This year’s annual meeting of the American Educational Research Association clearly will be a huge departure from the norm: Because of the threat posed by coronavirus, the meeting – themed “The Power and Possibilities for the Public Good when Researchers and Organizational Stakeholders Collaborate” – will be held online rather than convening thousands of educators in San Francisco as originally planned.

But in at least one way, the meeting will resemble those in previous years: Several members of the Teachers College extended community will be receiving significant honors.

Now slated to be held online, AERA 2020 will resemble meetings in previous years in at least one way: Several members of the Teachers College extended community will be receiving significant honors.

As of now, the list includes:

Ioana Literat, Assistant Professor of Communication, Media, and Learning Technologies Design. Literat is receiving the Early Career Award from AERA's Media, Culture & Learning Special Interest Group (SIG). Literat, who was a unanimous choice for the award, has extensively documented and analyzed how youth use online platforms such as the fan fiction site AO3, hitRECord, a  focal point for collaborative audio, video and text, and Scratch, which promotes game programming and animation, as venues for political expression and engagement. In the wake of the 2016 presidential election, Literat and her research partner, Neta Kligler-Vilenchik, Assistant Professor of Communication and Journalism at the Hebrew University of Jerusalem, audited more than 1,100 “digital artifacts” and 14,200 comments from these sites and concluded that “civic education programs – both in schools and other, informal contexts – should explicitly encourage young people to talk about connections between the political realm and their personal lives.”

Through TC’s Media and Social Change Lab (MASCLab), Literat currently is co-leading development of Lamboozled, a media literacy card game set in the fictional sheep town of Green Meadows – where, as the game’s tagline reads, “some news stories just want to pull the wool over your eyes!”

Sonya Douglas Horsford, Associate Professor of Education Leadership and Co-Director of TC’s Urban Education Leaders Program (UELP) in the Department of Organization & Leadership. Horsford has been elected Chair of both the AERA Politics of Education Association and Leadership for Social Justice Special Interest Groups. Horsford is founding director of the Black Education Research Collective (BERC), which seeks to generate new knowledge at the intersection of Black studies and education research and build connections across research, policy, and practice communities in ways that support the education of historically disenfranchised and underserved learners of all ages. Her most recent book, coauthored with Janelle T. Scott and Gary L. Anderson, is The Politics of Education Policy in an Era of Inequality: Possibilities for Democratic Schooling (Educational Leadership for Equity and Diversity), published in 2019 by Routledge. This past summer, in an essay titled “Whose School Integration?”, published in the journal Voices in Urban Education, she argued for “a redistribution of resources, with less concern on the ‘separate’ and a greater focus on the ‘equal,’ must be used to provide children with access to caring, demanding and well prepared teachers with high expectations, a curriculum that teaches the history of their group, and a supportive affirming environment that fosters self-knowledge, self-confidence and self-respect.”

Janet Miller, who retired from TC last year as Professor of English Education. Miller was to be recognized at AERA 2020 with a conference session – “Light in Bleak Times: Reflections on Janet Miller's Four Decades of Curriculum Theorizing and Praxis” – honoring her decades of scholarship focusing on intersections of curriculum, feminist and qualitative research theories (especially as the latter inform and disrupt constructions of curriculum) and teacher and researcher “subjectives.” Her books include Sounds of Silence Breaking: Women, Autobiography, Curriculum (Complicated Conversation), published in 2005 by Peter Lang Publishing; A Light in Dark Times: Maxine Greene and the Unfinished Conversation, coauthored with William C. Ayers (Teachers College Press 1998) and Creating Spaces and Finding Voices: Teachers Collaborating for Empowerment (SUNY Series 1990). In 2008 she received AERA’s Lifetime Achievement Award from Division B-Curriculum Studies. In 2010, she was elected an AERA Fellow – the organization’s highest recognition – for “sustained achievement in education research.”  And in 2015, she received the Mary Anne Raywid Award of the Society of Professors of Education (SPE) at the AERA annual conference. Miller also recently led creation of the M. Archive – a repository of previously unseen writings, letters and photographs of the late TC education philosopher Maxine Greene, housed within TC’s Gottesman Libraries.

Phillip Smith (Ph.D. ’19), a graduate of TC’s Education Leadership Program in the Department of Organization and Leadership. Smith is receiving both the Outstanding Dissertation Award from AERA Division A and the Distinguished Dissertation Award from AERA Division G. Smith is a Research Fellow with TC’s Institute for Urban and Minority Education and also serves as Program Director of the College’s Black Education Research Collective (BERC) and Director of its Reimagining Education Summer Institute. His dissertation is titled “Leading While Black and Male: A Phenomenology of Black Male School Leadership.” In addition to Horsford, the members of his dissertation committee include TC faculty members Mark A. Gooden, Christian Johnson Endeavor Professor of Education Leadership, and Michelle Knight-Manuel, Professor of Education and Editor of the Teachers College Record, as well as former TC faculty member Ernest Morrell, the Coyle Professor in Literacy Education and Director of the Center for Literacy Education at the University of Notre Dame, and Kofi Lomotey, Bardo Distinguished Professor, Department of Human Services, Educational Leadership, Western Carolina University.

Kenneth Graves (Ph.D. ’19, M.A. ’13), a graduate of the Education Leadership Program who currently serves as Upper School (9-12) Ethics & Technology Coordinator at New York City’s Ethical Culture Fieldston School and is an adjunct professor at TC’s Klingenstein Center for Independent School Leadership and at Boston College. He also recently co-organized a major conference at TC focused on how data can help school leaders in their work. Graves is receiving the Dissertation of the Year Award from the AERA Advanced Studies of National Databases SIG. Graves, His dissertation, titled “Disrupting the Digital Norm in the New Digital Divide: Toward a Conceptual and Empirical Framework of Technology Leadership for Social Justice through Multilevel Latent Class Analysis,” was previously awarded an AERA Dissertation Research Grant award in 2016. In addition to Horsford and Gooden, Graves’ dissertation committee included TC faculty members Alex Bowers, Associate Professor of Education Leadership, and Ellen Meier, Professor of Practice, Director of the Center for Technology and School Change and Coordinator, Educational Technology Specialist Program.