Marilyn Cochran-Smith, the Cawthorne Professor of Teacher Education for Urban Schools, has received the 2018 American Educational Research Association's Division K Legacy Award, which recognizes scholars' significant and exemplary contributions through research, teaching, and professional service in teaching and teacher education.

Marilyn Cochran-Smith
Marilyn Cochran-Smith

Cochran-Smith, who served as AERA president from 2004-05, received her award at the worldwide association's annual meeting in New York City on April 16.  

"I am honored to be the recipient of this award recognizing my contributions to teacher education research, practice and policy over many years," said Cochran-Smith. "It has been a professional pleasure to work in this area with so many LSOE colleagues and doctoral students, many of whom are now teacher education researchers at colleges and universities all over the country."

"This is such an apt honor for a scholar who is doing such important and consequential work in teaching and teacher education," said Katherine Schultz, vice president of Division K, and dean of the School of Education at the University of Colorado Boulder.

With more than 25,000 members globally, the Washington, DC-based AERA is the largest and most prominent interdisciplinary research association devoted to the scientific study of education and learning.  Division K, one of the AERA's 12 major areas of education research, is focused on the advancement of knowledge within instruction and teacher preparation.

"We're very pleased that Marilyn received this well-deserved recognition," said Stanton Wortham, the Charles F. Donovan, S.J., Dean of the Lynch School of Education.  "She is one of the most important experts in the fields of teaching and teacher education, and after all these decades, her work continues to be insightful, innovative and timely."

Cochran-Smith, who began teaching at the Lynch School in 1996, has concentrated her research on teachers and teaching, including practice, policy, and teacher education, both domestic and international.  Her topic areas of expertise include equity, diversity, and social justice in teaching and higher education. As teacher evaluation and credentialing have become targets of increasing scrutiny and public pressure in the U.S. and Europe, she has been frequently sought after for her wide-ranging knowledge of assessment in teacher education.

Her extensive engagement at last year's national AERA conference reflects her deep commitment and dynamic leadership in the field. She participated in seven symposia, including "Teacher Education for Equity: National and International Perspectives" and "Getting Accountability Right in Teacher Education." The latter featured a discussion of developing democratic accountability standards that Cochran-Smith said would hold teachers "accountable for preparing people to work and live in a democratic society."

She and longtime research collaborator Susan Lytle of the University of Pennsylvania also co-chaired a symposium that focused on marginalized students, families, and communities.

Cochran-Smith serves as an adjunct professor of education at the University of Auckland, New Zealand, and has participated for four years in Project RITE (Rethinking Initial Teacher Education for Equity), a collaborative effort between Boston College and the University of Auckland to develop a theory of teacher learning in the context of initial teacher education.

In the past 30 years, she has written more than 200 books, chapters, and articles about her educational research, including those during her six-year term as editor of the Journal of Teacher Education.

—Phil Gloudemans | University Communications | April 2018