What Makes Education Research "Educational"?

Thursday, September 13, 2007 (All day)

Abstract: Schools of education are under fire -- again. Critics point to the uselessness of education research, the low intellectual demand of teacher education, and the weak academic qualifications of education students and their professors. Disdain for schools of education is not new; from Koerner (1963) to Reid Lyon, criticisms have been heaped on the colleges, schools, and departments whose central mission is "education." Even ed school scholars have been among the sharpest e.g., Labaree, Levine).

This presentation argues that schools of education should exist not because of professional self-interest or historical convenience, but because they are in fact, the place where research in education is conducted and where people who have expertise in education are housed and trained. The talk focuses on the question, "What is research IN education, and what makes it both special and essential?" Using a sample of studies that exemplify this educational perspective, the talk unpacks its key features and raise challenges for school of education and their inhabitants.