News Article

Nomination Period Open for 2008 Jan Hawkins Award

Thursday, January 10, 2008

The nomination period is now open for the 2008 Jan Hawkins Award for Early Career Contributions to Humanistic Research and Scholarship in Learning Technologies, presented by Division C of the American Educational Research Association (AERA). The award carries a stipend of $500 and the opportunity for the award winner(s) to present a talk at the following year's AERA annual meeting.

This award recognizes an individual, individuals, or small collaborative team that is engaged in research that combines, in some way, practice and advocacy. While research must play a central, informative role in the work of the nominee, the individual or group submitting the application can include practitioners, directors of innovative educational programs, or individuals in informal or non-traditional educational environments who are blending research, practice, and advocacy.

The award is intended to recognize a body of work that does one or more of the following:

  • Explores and demonstrates powerful new ways to think about technologies in contexts of learning and education, and uses innovative research techniques to understand the impact of those technologies
  • Places young people and/or practicing educators at the center of the problem-solving process by making their meaning-making process, their needs and constraints, and their priorities central to the project of making technology useful to teaching and learning
  • Strikes an effective balance between innovation--inventing new approaches to K-12 learning with technologies--and understanding-examining existing educational environments and the processes of change that they undergo when technologies are introduced or used in new ways
  • Uses technology to bring about broad improvements in educational systems with a focus on issues of diversity, equity, and learning for all
  • Is an early career contribution with the above orientations (the award will emphasize recognition for those individuals who are at the pre-tenure stage in academic careers, or pre-tenure-level equivalents in non-university contexts)

Any member of AERA Division C may make a nomination, including self-nominations. The recipient(s) of the award need not belong to Division C. The nominations should include the following information:

LETTER: A nomination letter introducing the nominee or small team, detailing how this nominee combines research and advocacy.

VITA: The vita of the nominee (for individual nominations) or a description of the team, its history, and a vita for team members (for small group nominations).

REPRESENTATIVE WORK: One to three examples of work (research papers, publications, or other forms of professional work) that demonstrate the key contributions of the nominee's recent research. For a small group, the examples of representative work should consist of collaborative work authored by the team.

Please assemble and submit these materials in one of the following ways (electronic nominations only): 1) A web portfolio with links to the nominating letter, vita, and work. (The reviewers will use links to web sites as illustrations and will not extensively explore websites unless there are clear indications of how the sites relate to the program of research of the nominee.) Be sure to send the chairs an email note informing them of the nomination and that the web portfolio is complete. 2) Attached electronic materials in commonly shared formats (MS- WORD, PDF, JPG, GIF, etc) sent though email. The submission deadline is February 25, 2008. Please send all electronic nominations (including self-nominations) to this year's co- chairs, Rand Spiro and Barry Fishman with "Jan Hawkins Award" in the subject header.

Dr. Jan Hawkins (1952-1999) was a developmental psychologist with a cognitive, cultural, and social-interactionist orientation, and was well known for her respectful, humanistic conceptions of appropriate roles for using technology in K-12 learning environments. Her work illustrates the balance that can be achieved in recognizing the innovative, emergent properties of new technologies while simultaneously respecting the individuals and conditions of the learning environments in which these new technologies are being used. She also was concerned with how complex social systems interact with emerging technologies to provide or prevent access to information for various groups of people based on gender, race, and cultural and ethnic background. Her work helped researchers, practitioners, and policy makers alike to think critically about technologies and learning, encouraging them not to seek out technology as a panacea or avoid it as a deterministic influence. She was also exemplary in her nurturing of young research scholars in learning technologies, and has been a model for them through her research and leadership.