Postsecondary Education (J)
Postsecondary Education (J)
Preparing for Virtual AERA 2020

Message from Division J VP Torres

The AERA Council continues to meet and provide guidance about how the Virtual AERA 2020 conference will transpire. Though not everything is in place, I want to take a moment and update Division J members on what to expect.

AERA Office will be announcing the programs that will be conducted virtually during the days that the meeting would have taken place (April 17 to 21) and programs that will be offered those dates. Final arrangements are being made for AERA to provide the platform for those virtual sessions as well as information about how accepted research paper sessions will upload papers online. As you may be experiencing on-campus, getting the infrastructure set up takes time.

Division J Executive Committee met virtually last week and discussed that the Business Meeting at AERA goals would not be the same in a virtual format. We recognize that the face-to-face meeting was also a networking opportunity for Division J members. For this reason the Division will not hold a virtual business meeting. Instead we will use the PEN Newsletter to make the announcements and award winners we normally make at the business meeting. Look for the PEN Newsletter in the coming weeks! I want to personally thank Nicole Wilson the PEN Editor for being flexible this semester.

As a Division and an Association, there are still more decisions and plans that need to be enacted. Please be patient as announcements roll out in the next weeks. While disappointed that we will not see each other, I sense that we are all experiencing a new normal on our campuses and can appreciate all the issues that come with these types of change in plans.

Vasti Torres, Division J Vice President


Message from Division VP

Welcome to the Division J scholarly community. As a longtime member of Division J, it is a pleasure to serve AERA in the Vice President role. This Division of AERA focuses on scholars and practitioners who study postsecondary issues such as postsecondary organizations, policy, college student experiences and transitions, and postsecondary curricular issues. The Division provides a venue for scholars to come together for research conversations and collaborations. 

As part of AERA, Division J is dedicated to expanding and deepening knowledge around issues that influence postsecondary education in today’s societal context. The programs sponsored by Division J at the AERA Annual Meeting challenge the status quo by attempting to address systems and processes that can deny access and limit the potential of students, faculty, and staff. As a group of scholars, we seek to interrogate current practices to make them better for the diverse individuals who are part of the higher education enterprise.

I welcome you to engage with seasoned and early-career colleagues through the various programs sponsored by the Division. Though AERA is a large educational conference, the Division J Business Meeting is an opportune place to connect with scholars and practitioners you know and to recognize the accomplishments of our peers. I look forward to seeing you at the Business Meeting at the upcoming AERA Annual Meeting. 

Vasti Torres
Vice President, Division J
Professor in the Center for the Study of Higher & Postsecondary Education
University of Michigan 

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Who We Are

Division J serves as an international forum for policymakers, faculty, graduate students, and other researchers to promote and advance research, policy, and practice in all areas of postsecondary education.

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Check out the Fall 2020 Issue of  The PEN, the Division J newsletter!

Key Initiatives

Each year Division J has multiple initiatives.

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Each year Division J accepts nominations for four awards: Outstanding Publication, Exemplary Research, Dissertation of the Year, and Outstanding Poster. 

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