Educational Studies Professors Offer Own Department as Case Study for Engaged Scholarship

Joseph Derrick Nelson, Lisa Smulyan '76, Elaine Allard '05, Roseann Liu, Jennifer Bradley, and Edwin Mayorga.

Joseph Derrick Nelson, Lisa Smulyan '76, Elaine Allard '05, Roseann Liu, Jennifer Bradley, and Edwin Mayorga.

Six faculty members from the Educational Studies Department recently spoke at the annual meeting of the American Educational Research Association in New York, N.Y. The AERA is a national research society that strives to advance knowledge about education, encourage scholarly inquiry related to education, and promote the use of research to improve education and serve the public good.

The panel - Elaine Allard '05, Jennifer Bradley, Roseann Liu, Edwin Mayorga, Joseph Derrick Nelson, and Lisa Smulyan '76 - spoke on their proposal, "School Partnerships for Racial Equity: Case Studies of Engaged Scholarship in Educational Studies," which examines the rise in partnerships between increasingly underfunded public schools and higher education institutions that try make up the difference.

These partnerships fall under an umbrella of "engaged scholarship," a point of emphasis for the Lang Center for Civic & Social Responsibility and its partnerships with academic departments. The panel offered their own Educational Studies Department as a case study, providing "a model of how a group of interconnected scholars can move toward more just research relationships through both individual and collective effort."

"Naming what we do as engaged scholarship gives us a way to communicate and work within a shared set of values - and to constantly interrogate what we mean, what we do, and how we 'engage' with each other, our academic communities, our students, and our community partners," says Smulyan.

Also in attendance at the conference were George Woodliff-Stanley '18, a cognitive science and educational studies special major from Denver, Colo., Sonya Chen '18, an honors political science major from Hong Kong who co-presented with Nelson, Stanford University doctoral candidate in education Sarah Cotcamp McGrew '07, and Claire Robbins '01, an assistant professor of higher education at Virginia Tech.