Defeat at Newcastle last weekend together with rivals picking up results has closed the gap at the bottom of the table with just five points separating 12th and 20th.
And Kilman says Dawson’s experience is proving crucial as they look to fight their way clear of the relegation dogfight.
Kilman’s overall game has improved since the turn of the year and the 25-year-old believes the arrival of the former Albion and West Ham stopper has been a key factor.
“He’s been really good. You can see his quality, he’s a leader and a very experienced player who has played many games in the Premier League. He’s been a great addition to the squad.
“We have a lot of great players in each position and it’s good. It’s great to have more experience and top level players in our team.
“Me, Nathan (Collins) and Toti (Gomes) are learning a lot from Daws. We have really good centre-halves, so it’s good competition in each position, and I think it’s what the manager wanted.
“It’s good for everyone, everyone works hard and pushes each other to do better, so when we come to games, we can do our best.”
Despite the late 2-1 defeat at Newcastle, Kilman believes the team are playing much better brand of football and that the players won’t let the pressure affect them on the pitch.
“This part of the season, we’ve played much better as a team, been more together and performed much better. Regardless if it’s been a win or a loss, we still feel really confident going into games.
“We know the quality we have and the way we’re playing is working really well. We’re all quite confident going into each game right now so it’s good. These final 11 games of the season we can hopefully push on even more and try to finish in a good position.”
He added: “The pressure has been different this year as it’s been a difficult season, but it’s part and parcel of being a professional football that you have to deal with different situations.
“It’s not been great, but we’ve pushed on and we’ve climbed up the table. These last 11 games are massive and hopefully we’ll do our best and see where we finish at the end of the season.”
n Former Wolves midfielder Carl Robinson has returned to MLS as Wayne Rooney’s assistant at DC United.
Well-travelled Robinson, 46, had previously spent five successful years in the United States leagues in charge of Canada outfit Vancouver Whitecaps.
For the last three years he has worked in Australia with Newcastle Jets and Western Sydney Wanderers but now returns stateside to work with Manchester United and England legend Rooney.
Rooney said: “Carl is an experienced MLS coach who has a great understanding of the league, both as a player and coach. He’s already added a lot of value to the coaching side and his knowledge and experience will be a great addition.”
Robinson added: “I’m proud to join DC United and be a part of the coaching staff for such a historic MLS club.
“I’m excited about the project that’s being led by Wayne Rooney and believe that the team can be successful this season.”