Pirjo Aunio

Professor / Head of Research - Department of Special Needs Education
Image of Pirjo Aunio
Norwegian version of this page
Phone +47-22858049
Room 429
Postal address Post box 1140 Blindern 0318 Oslo

Current position

Professor (Mathematical learning difficulties), University of Oslo, 2017-; Docent, University of Helsinki, 2009-; Visiting professor (early childhood education), University of Johannesburg, 2015

Education and training

University of Helsinki, 1997 M. Ed. (incl. teacher qualification), 2002 Lic. Ed., 2006 PhD (special education)

Previous professional appointments              

  • University of Helsinki, Special Education: Professor (head of unit 2015-2016) (total 3 years 11 months) 2013-2017; University lecturer (total 3 years 11 months) 2010-2013.
  • University of Jyväskylä, Niilo Mäki Institute: Project manager & researcher (leading researcher) (2 years 11 months) 2007-2010; Post Doctoral researcher (9 months) 2006-2007
  • Singapore Finnish Supplementary School: Principal (incl. teaching) (9 months) 2006-2007.
  • University of Helsinki, Special Education: PhD student (4 years) (2002-2005)

Short term and visiting positions abroad

  • Nanyang Technological University, National Institute of Education, Singapore: Visiting professor (1 month) 2016
  • University of Oslo, Norway: Visiting professor (3 years 5 months) 2014-2017
  • Chinese Academy of Sciences, Institute of Psychology: visiting PhD-student (2 years) 1998-2000

Lectured courses

  • Mathematical learning difficulties courses (bachelor, master, in-service training; together 18) in University of Helsinki, University of Oslo and Niilo Mäki Institute.

Research interest

  • Development of mathematical skills
  • Assessment of mathematical skills, mathematical learning difficulties and related factors
  • Interventions for children at risk for learning difficulties in mathematics

Other academic and professional activities

  • Membership in scientific societies: 2 societies
  • Scientific per reviewed papers in international journals: 42, Personal Google Scholar H-Index 15 and ISI WoS index 6 (24.5.2017).
  • Referee for Scientific Journals: 17 journals
  • Member of editoral board for 4 international journals (Educational Psychology: An International Journal of Experimental Educational Psychology, 2017- 2018; Learning and Individual Differences, 2017-2019; South African Journal of Childhood Education, 2015- ; Journal of Early Childhood Research, 2012- )
  • Referee for International Research Grant proposals: 6

Curriculum Vitae

Pirjo Aunio: Curriculum Vitae (pdf)



Tags: Special Needs Education, Learning difficulties in mathematics


A1 Original scientific article (selected)

Journal ratings are inside the brackets in the end of each article. Finnish Publication Forum index  (FPB) has three levels:  1=basic, 2=leading, 3= top (www.tsv.fi/julkaisufoorumi/english). SJR ratings are checked on 3 April 2016 from www.scimagojr.com. I have marked # those that were part of my PhD-thesis.



Aunio, P.  Aubrey, C. Godfrey, R., Yuejuan, P. & Liu, Y. (2008). Children’s early numeracy in England, Finland and People’s Republic of China. International Journal of Early Years Education, 16 (3) 203-221. (FPF level 1, SJR provided only 2010 onwards SJR 2012 0.561)

#Aunio, P., Ee, J., Lim, A., Hautamäki, J., & Van Luit, J.E.H. (2004). Young Children’s Number Sense in Finland, Hong Kong and Singapore. International Journal of Early Years Education, 12, 195-216. (FPF level 1, SJR provided only 2010 onwards SJR 2012 0.561)

#Aunio, P., Hautamäki, J., Heiskari, P. & Van Luit, J. (2006). The Early Numeracy Test in Finnish – Children’s Norms. Scandinavian Journal of Psychology, 47, 369-378. (FPF Level 2, SJR 2006 0.36)

#Aunio, P.,  Hautamäki, J., Sajaniemi, N., & Van Luit, J. E. H. (2009). Early Numeracy in Low-Performing Young Children. British Educational Research Journal, 35 (1) 25-46. (FPF Level 2, SJR 2009 1.605)

#Aunio, P., Hautamäki, J. & Van Luit, J.E.H. (2005). Mathematical-thinking intervention programmes for preschool children with normal and low number sense. European Journal of Special Needs Education, 20,131-146. (FPF level 1, SJR 2009 0.279)

Aunio, P., Heiskari, P., Van Luit, J.E.H  & Vuorio, J-M. (2015) The development of early numeracy skills in preschool and kindergarten. Journal of Early Childhood Research, 13, 13-16. (FPF level 1, no SJR)

Aunio, P., Korhonen J., Bashash, L. & Khoshbakht, F.  (2015) Children’s Early Numeracy in Finland and Iran. International Journal of Early Years Education (FPF level 1, SJR  2014 0.47)

Aunio, P., Mononen, R., Ragpot, L., & Törmänen, M. (2016) Early Numeracy Performance of South African School Beginners. South African Journal of Childhood Education, 6 (1) 1-8. DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.4102/sajce.v6i1.496. (FPF level 1, no SJR)

Aunio, P. & Niemivirta, M. (2010) Predicting children’s mathematical performance in grade one by early numeracy skills. Learning and Individual Differences, 20, 427-435. (FPF level 2, SJR 2010 1.661)

#Aunio, P., Niemivirta, M., Hautamäki, J., Van Luit, J.E.H., Shi, J. & Zhang, M. (2006) Young Children’s Number Sense in China and Finland. Scandinavian Journal of Educational Research, 50 (5) 483-502. (FPF level 2, SJR 2006 0.144)

Aunio, P. & Räsänen, P. (2015) Core numerical skills for learning mathematics in children aged five to eight years - a working model for educators. European Early Childhood Education Research Journal DOI:10.1080/1350293X.2014.996424 (FPF level 1, SJR 2014 0.53)

Ekstam, U., Korhonen, J., Linnanmäki, K., & Aunio, P. (accepted for publication). Special education and subject teachers’ self-perceived readiness to teach mathematics to low-performing middle school students. Journal of Research in Special Educational Needs. FPF level 1, SJR  2015  0.47)

Ekstam, U., Korhonen, J., Linnamäki, K.  & Aunio. P. (2017)  Special education pre-service teachers' interest, subject knowledge, and teacher efficacy beliefs in mathematics. Teaching and Teacher Education, 63, 338-345. (FPF level 2 , SJR  2015 1.84)

Ekstam, U., Linnanmäki, K. & Aunio, P. (2015) Educational support for low performing students in mathematics: the three-tier support model in Finnish lower secondary schools.  European Journal of Special Needs Education. 30 (1) 75-92. (FPF level 1, SJR 2014 0.55)

Holm, M., Aunio, P., Björn, P Klenberg, L.. Korhonen, J. & Hannula, M. Behavioral Executive Functions among Adolescents with Mathematics Difficulties. Journal of Learning Disabilities. In press. FPF level 3 , SJR 2015 1.48)

Hotulainen, R., Mononen, R. & Aunio, P. (2016) Thinking Skills Intervention for Low-Achieving First Graders. European Journal of Special Needs Education, 31 (3)  360-375. DOI 10.1080/08856257.2016.1141541(FPF level 1, SJR 2014 0.55)

Korhonen, J., Linnanmäki, K. & Aunio, P. (2012) Language and Mathematical Performance: a Comparison of Lower Secondary School Students with Different Level of Mathematical Skills. Scandinavian Journal of Educational Research, 56:3, 333-344. (FPF Level 2, SJR 2012 0.327)

Korhonen, J., Linnanmäki, K. & Aunio, P. (2014). Learning difficulties, academic well-being and educational dropout: A person-centred approach.  Learning and Individual Differences, 31, 1-10. (FPF level 2, SJR 2014 1.08)

Korhonen, J., Tapola, A. Linnanmäki, K. & Aunio, P. (2016) Gendered pathways to educational aspirations: The role of academic self-concept, school burnout, achievement and interest in mathematics and reading.  Learning and Instruction, 46, 21-33. (FPF level 3, SJR 2015 2.85)

Kyttälä, M., Aunio, P., Lehto, J.E., Van Luit, J. & Hautamäki, J. (2003). Visuospatial working memory and early numeracy.  Educational and Child Psychology, 20 (3) 65-76. (FPF Level 1, SJR provided only 2012 onwards, SJR 2012 0.12)

Kyttälä, M., Aunio, P., & Hautamäki, J. (2010) Working memory resources in young children with mathematical difficulties.  Scandinavian Journal of Psychology, 51, 1–15. (FPF level 2, SJR 2010 0.437)

Kyttälä, M., Aunio, P., Lepola, J. & Hautamäki, J. (2014).  The Role of working memory and language skills in the prediction of word problem solving in 4- to 7 year old children. Educational Psychology, 34 (6) 674-696. (FPF level 2, SJR 2014 0.7)

Mononen, R. & Aunio.P.  (2013) Early Mathematical Performance in Finnish Kindergarten and Grade One. LUMAT 1(3) 245-261. (No FPF level, no SJR, a new journal)

Mononen, R. & Aunio, P.  (2014) A mathematics Intervention for Low-performing Finnish Second Graders: Findings from a Pilot Study. European Journal of Special Needs Education. DOI: 10.1080/08856257.2014.922794.  (FPF level 1, SJR 2014 0.55)

Mononen, R. & Aunio, P. (2016)  Math intervention for low-performing first graders. South African Journal of Childhood Education, 6 (1) a407.http://dx.doi.org/10.4102/sajce.v6i1.407. (FPF level 1, no SJR)

Mononen, R., Aunio, P. & Koponen, T. (2014) A pilot study of the effects of Right Start instruction on early numeracy skills of children with specific language impairment. Research in Developmental Disabilities, 35 (5) 999-1014. (FPF level 1, SJR 2014 0.99)

Mononen, R., Aunio, P. & Koponen, T. (2014). Investigating RightStart Mathematics Kindergarten Instruction in Finland. Journal of Early Childhood Education Research, 3 (1) 2-26. (No FPF level, no SJR, a new journal)

Mononen, R., Aunio, P., Koponen, T., & Aro, M. (2014) A Review of early numeracy interventions: Effectiveness and pedagogical implementation.  International Journal of Early Childhood Special Education, 6, 1, s. 25-54.(FPF level 1, no SJR, a new journal)

Räsänen, P. Salminen, J., Wilson, A., Aunio, P. & Dehaene, S. (2009) Computer-assisted intervention for early number skills in children with low numeracy: A short review and a randomized controlled trial. Cognitive Development, 24, 4, 450-472. (FPF level 2, SJR 2009 1.722)

Vandenbroucke, L., Verschuren,K., Desoete, A., Aunio, P., Chesqiuère, P. & Baeyens, D.  Crossing the bridge to elementary school: The development of  children’s working memory components in realtion to teacher-student relationships and academic achievement. Early Childhood Research Quaterly, in press



Published Feb. 14, 2014 12:51 PM - Last modified Aug. 18, 2017 11:15 AM