Aera Dissertation Award 2012 Election


On behalf of the Officers of the Action Research SIG of AERA, we are happy to announce the competition for the 2018 Action Research SIG Dissertation Award. We welcome and encourage self-nominations for the award, based on the criteria and timelines presented below.

Description of the Award:  This award will be presented to a recent graduate student who submits a summary report of his/her action-research-based dissertation that meets the criteria below and best exemplifies the principles of action research and/or that advances best research practices.

Eligibility Criteria:

  • Dissertation must have been successfully defended in the time frame from December, 2012 to December, 2017
  • Need NOT be a member of AERA
  • Need NOT be a member of the Action Research SIG
  • Must submit a maximum ten-page summary report/description of the dissertation, highlighting the action research focus of the research

Nomination Process and Timeline:

  1. Nominees must self-nominate (by sending an “intent to submit” email to Craig Mertler, Chair of the Action Research SIG, at
  2. Timeframe for self-nominations: October 7, 2017 – November 15, 2017
  3. Deadline for submissions of 10-page summary reports/description of the dissertation (as Word documents ONLY) via email attachment to  December 1, 2017

Review/Selection Process and Timeline:

  1. Review Panel will begin review:  December 7, 2017
  2. Review Panels’ decision due to SIG Chair:  January 15, 2018
  3. Winner will be notified:  February 1, 2018
  4. SIG Chair will submit name of winner to AERA Central office:  February 15, 2018

Evaluation criteria:

  • The dissertation has a distinct action research focus and method.
  • The dissertation has action research design and methodological rigor.
  • The results, interpretation, discussion, and/or implications are clear and in line with action research tradition.
  • The dissertation includes implications and recommendations for continuing the action research cycle.
  • There is a substantive contribution to local context and/or the field of action research.
  • The overall quality of the dissertation writing and presentation is high.

Forms of Recognition:

    1. Certificate of recognition
    2. $300.00 stipend to cover AERA membership for one year, Annual Meeting fee, and to support travel to the annual meeting in New York City
    3. Formal presentation at the business meeting of the Action Research SIG at the AERA annual meeting
    4. Profile, synopsis, and picture on the Action Research SIG website

Please visit the "2017 Annual Meeting" page to see our 2017 Best Paper Award winners, and to download their action research paper!

Researchers from all over the world converge at AERA to share and discuss research across numerous education disciplines. Here is a look at the key events and honors involving MSU scholars.

Presidential Address
For the past year, MSU faculty member Barbara Schneider has been serving as president of the 25,000-member organization and will be giving a presidential address during the meeting. Schneider is the John A. Hannah Chair and University Distinguished Professor in the College of Education and Department of Sociology at MSU.

Her talk, titled “Aligned Ambitions: What’s Behind the College Mismatch Problem?,” is scheduled for 4:35 to 5:35 p.m. Saturday, April 5 followed by a Champagne Reception in the Convention Center, Terrace Level – Terrace I. The address will explore the hot-button issue of “undermatching,” the tendency for low-income and minority high school students to enroll in colleges that are “less selective than their grades, test scores and aspirations predict.”

Schneider will share findings from the College Ambition Program (CAP), a whole-high school invention designed to help students fulfill their ambitions. After four years in the field, working with over 3,000 students, results demonstrate that there are concrete strategies that change college plans and enrollment with the potential for scale-up at a national level.

The session Twitter hashtag is #AERAPres and will be livestreamed April 5.

Other Notable Sessions

  • Ann Austin and James Fairweather, professors of Higher, Adult and Lifelong Education, are participants in a Presidential Session focusing on improving undergraduate education in STEM (science, technology, engineering and technology). The session, which is co-chaired by Austin, will be held from 8:15 to 10:15 a.m. Sunday, April 6 in the Convention Center, 200 Level, 201A. The symposium features ways in which newer theoretical frameworks can inform innovative change projects—and how efforts to implement change can help refine theory as well as approaches to research. This includes the AAU STEM Undergraduate Education Initiative, of which Fairweather is co-principal investigator,  and the Center for the Integration of Research, Teaching, and Learning (CIRTL), of which Austin is leading research and evaluation.
  • William Schmidt is participating in a Presidential Session focused on the 2012 PISA Results: Why We Should Care About International Comparisons, to be held from 10:35 a.m. to 12:05 p.m. Saturday April 5 in the Convention Center, 200 Level, 201B. The presenter is Andreas Schleicher of OECD.
  • Ken Frank, professor of Measurement and Quantitative Methods (MQM), is participating in a Presidential Session on social network analysis as a way to study school improvement. The session will be held from 4:05 to 5:35 p.m. Sunday April 6 in the Convention Center, 200 Level, 201A. Min Sun, an MSU doctoral graduate, is serving as session chair.
  • As the 2013 recipient of the Early Career Award for AERA’s Division C (Learning and Instruction), Christine Greenhow, assistant professor of Educational Psychology and Educational Technology (EPET) will present an invited address at this year’s meeting. Her talk, “Leveraging Social Media to Create Opportunities for Learning and Scholarship,” is scheduled for 12:25 to 1:55 p.m. Friday, April 4 in the Convention Center, 100 Level, 103A. Greenhow is an assistant professor in Educational Psychology and Educational Technology (EPET). Fellow EPET Professor Rand Spiro, who nominated Greenhow for the award along with Gail Sinatra of USC, will serve as discussant for the session.

Awards and honors:

  • Two MSU scholars are receiving association-level awards from AERA. University Distinguished Professor Mark Reckase is recipient of the E. F. Lindquist Award. Dorinda Carter Andrews, associate professor of teacher education, is receiving the AERA Scholars of Color Early Career Contribution Award. Read more on both awards.

  • Three faculty members will receive the Award for Exemplary Research  in Teaching and Teacher Education from AERA’s Division K (Teaching and Teacher Education). Samantha Caughlan, Mary M. Juzwik andJodene Goldenring Fine are being honored for their efforts to build English teacher candidates’ capacity to engage in dialogic teaching practices. In particular, the award recognizes a February 2013 paper published in Research in the Teaching of English, which outlines findings from their study of 87 pre-service teachers in field experiences. Sharing in the award as additional co-authors on the paper are Carlin Borsheim-Black, MSU graduate and faculty member at Central Michigan University, and Sean Kelly of the University of Pittsburgh.
  • Ann Austin, professor of higher education, will receive the Exemplary Research Award Award from Division J (Postsecondary Education). The honor is reserved for scholars whose published research has made an outstanding contribution to knowledge and understanding in the field of higher education.
  • Terah Venzant Chambers, assistant professor of educational administration, was elected secretary of AERA’s Division A (Administration, Organization and Leadership).
  • Recent graduate Hsuan-Yi Huang has received the 2013 Outstanding Dissertation Award from Division B (Curriculum Studies). Faculty members Lynn Fendler and Jeff Bale were co-directors for her dissertation, titled “Hanwen and Taiwanese Subjectivities: A Genealogy of Language Policies in Taiwan, 1895-1945.” Huang is a 2013 graduate of the Curriculum, Instruction and Teacher Education (CITE) PhD program, and she is now a postdoctoral research associate at National Taiwan Normal University.

Also, plan to attend the College of Education’s AERA reception, from 8:30 to 11:55 p.m. on Saturday, April 5, in the Pennsylvania Convention Center, Terrace II, 400 Level. This event is an opportunity for alumni and friends to reconnect while enjoying great food and entertainment from the college band, Against School Violence.

Visit for full details.

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