Outstanding Book Award
Outstanding Book Award


2017 Award Recipient

Roberto G. Gonzales
Harvard University            

Lives in Limbo: Undocumented and Coming of Age in America.

Through the pages of this remarkable book walk young people we all know, have learned from, and cherish as part of the true America. The book draws our attention to the essential role of acceptance, recognition of our history, and expectations for the future. Based on long-term engagement with 150 undocumented young people in Los Angeles, the volume brings us up close to the everyday lives of individuals who must ever live in fear of being “found out,” identified as “not belonging,” and “never being safe.” Far more than a set of case studies, this integrative work forces us to recognize that economic, political, and social factors cut into the lives of the undocumented among our students far more than do curricular programs or educational policies. Never again, after reading this book, should we as scholars fail to engage across disciplines. We do so to inform ourselves fully so that we may work together to preserve not only human rights but our nation’s true meaning for tomorrow. Gonzales forces us to face the question, Can we ever act with a collective faith in the power of being humane?  

The AERA Council established this award for the best book-length publication in educational research and development. To be considered for the Award, a book must be concerned with the improvement of the educational process through research or scholarly inquiry, must have a research base, and must have a copyright date of the past two years in the year in which the award is to be given. 

A book may be nominated by the author or by another scholar. The book may have been published anywhere in the world but must be available in English. No edited volumes are considered for the award. 

Past Recipients

2016 - Diana E. Hess & Paula McAvoy
2015 - David P. Baker
2014 - David L. Kirp
2013 - Christopher P. Loss
2012 - Valerie Kinloch
2011 - Richard R. Valencia
2010 - Jeffrey R. Henig - Spin Cycle: How Research Is Used in Policy Debates: The Case of Charter Schools
2009 - Paul Attewell & David E. Lavin - Passing the Torch: Does Higher Education for the Disadvantaged Pay Off Across the Generations?
2008 - C. J. Pascoe - Dude, You're a Fag: Masculinity and Sexuality in High School
2007 - Rami Benbenishty & Ron Avi Astor - School Violence in Context
2006 - William G. Bowen, Martin A. Kurzweil & Eugene M. Tobin -Equity and Excellence in American Higher Education 
2005 - Mica Pollock - Colormute: Race Talk Dilemmas in an American School, and Frederick D. Erickson -Talk and Social Theory
2004 - Amy J. Binder - Contentious Curricula: Afrocentrism and Creationism in American Public Schools 
2003 - No award made
2002 - Robin Alexander - Culture & Pedagogy 
2001 - Jeannie Oakes, Karen Hunter Qurtz, Steve Ryan and Martin Lipton - Becoming Good American Schools 
2000 - Angela Valenzuela -Subtractive Schooling: U.S. Mexican Youth and the Politics of Caring 
1999 - John M. Willinsky - Learning to Divide the World: Education at Empire's End 
1998 - Linda Darling-Hammond -The Right to Learn 
1997 - L. Scott Miller - An American Imperative 
1996 - David C. Berliner & Bruce J. Biddle - The Manufactured Crisis 
1995 - Jeffrey Mirel - The Rise and Fall of an Urban School System: Detroit 1970-1981 
1994 - No Award Given
1993 - Joan DelFattore & Jonathan Kozol
1992 - David B. Tyack, Elizabeth Hansot, Teun A. Van Dijk & Idit Harel
1991 - Stephen Brint & Jerome Karabel
1990 - James D. Anderson
1989 - Burton R. Clark & David F. Labaree
1988 - James C. Coleman & Thomas Hoffer
1987 - Robert J. Sternberg
1986 - David John Hogan
1985 - John I. Goodlad
1984 - Sarah Lawrence-Lightfoot, Teun A. Van Dijk & Walter Kintsch
1983 - Stephen Jay Gould & CarolGilligan

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