2021 AERA News Releases
2021 AERA News Releases


Statement by AERA Executive Director Felice J. Levine on the U.N. International Day of Persons with Disabilities
Since 1992, the United Nations has designated December 3 as the International Day of Persons with Disabilities, aiming to promote an understanding of disability issues and mobilize support for the dignity, rights, and well-being of individuals with disabilities. Read more


Study: Admissions Lotteries at Selective Colleges Might Dramatically Reduce the Enrollment of Students of Color, Low-Income Students, and Men
Many advocates for more equitable college admissions policies have called for random-draw lotteries as a simple and transparent way to fix the “problem” of elite college admissions. However, simulations of lottery admissions conducted in a new study find dramatic and negative potential effects of lotteries on the admission of students of color, low-income students, and men. Read more


Distinguished Scholar Lori Patton Davis to Challenge Narratives Surrounding Brown v. Board of Education in 2021 AERA Brown Lecture
In her 2021 AERA Brown Lecture in Education Research talk on October 21Lori Patton Davis, professor of higher education and student affairs at Ohio State University, will challenge prevailing narratives surrounding Brown and introduce perspectives that might help account for our lack of progress—perspectives that typically are overlooked or erased in wider Brown discourses. Read more



Prominent Scholar Sylvia Hurtado to Address Racial Bias and Exclusion in Higher Education in 2021 AERA Distinguished Lecture
Sylvia Hurtado, a professor at the University of California, Los Angeles (UCLA), will give the 2021 AERA Distinguished Lecture on September 30. Rescheduled from the AERA Virtual Annual Meeting in April, the lecture is titled “The Inevitability of Racial Bias and Exclusion: Implications for Identity-Based Education and Practice.” Read more



AERA Announces 2021 Award Winners in Education Research
AERA has announced the winners of its 2021 awards for excellence in education research. Recipients include Congressman Bobby Scott, Nikole Hannah-Jones, and exemplary scholars across education research fields and career stages. Read more


Study Finds “Thriving Gap” Between Students Who Attended High School Remotely Versus in Person
New research finds that high school students who attended school remotely during the COVID-19 pandemic suffered socially, emotionally, and academically compared with those who attended in person. Read more

AERA Announces 2021 Fellows
AERA has announced the selection of 19 exemplary scholars as 2021 AERA Fellows. Read more 

AERA Announces New Editor Team for AERA Open
AERA has announced the appointment of Kara S. Finnigan, Terah Venzant Chambers, Stella M. Flores, Michal Kurlaender, Elizabeth Birr Moje, Michele S. Moses, and Cecilia Rios-Aguilar as the new editor team of AERA Open for 2022–24. Read more


Interacting with Therapy Dogs Can Improve Struggling College Students’ “Thinking” Skills
New research finds that college students at risk of failing academically showed significant improvement in executive functioning after interacting with therapy dogs one hour a week for a month. Read more

AERA Statement in Support of Teachers and Educators
As the end of the school year draws near, we want to acknowledge the incredible creativity, resilience, and hard work of educators this year. It has been a time like no other. Read more

Preeminent Scholar Edmund Gordon to Be Named Honorary President of the American Educational Research Association Today
Edmund W. Gordon, a distinguished education researcher renowned for his pioneering scholarship on the gaps in education opportunities and supports for children of color and low-income students, will be named AERA honorary president. Read more

Study Snapshot: Paying for Whose Performance? Teacher Incentive Pay and the Black-White Test Score Gap
Teacher incentive pay programs that focused on raising student achievement in high-need high schools expanded the test score gap between Black and White students by between 64 percent and 85 percent. Read more

Study Snapshot: Untested Admissions: Examining Changes in Application Behaviors and Student Demographics Under Test-Optional Policies
The adoption of test-optional policies at selective private institutions was linked to a 3-4 percent increase in undergraduate enrollment of Pell Grant recipients, a 10-12 percent increase in enrollment of first-time Black, Latinx, and Native students, and a 6-8 percent increase in enrollment of first-time students who were women. However, these gains translate into only a 1 percentage point increase in the share of the student body receiving Pell Grants, a 1 percentage point increase of the share of incoming students who were from underrepresented racially/ethnically minoritized backgrounds, and a 4 percentage point increase in the share of incoming students who were women. Read more

Study Snapshot: Disproportionate Burden: Estimating the Cost of FAFSA Verification for Public Colleges and Universities
The institutional compliance costs of the FAFSA verification mandate in 2014 totaled nearly $500 million, with the burden falling disproportionately on public institutions and community colleges in particular. Twenty-two percent of an average community college’s financial aid office operating budget is devoted to verification procedures, compared to 15 percent at public four-year institutions and 1 percent at private four-year institutions. Read more

Study Snapshot: 21st Century Tracking and De Facto School Segregation: Excluding and Hoarding Access to College Prep
The prevalence of Black, non-Hispanic students in high schools that do not offer any AP or IB courses in multi-school districts that fund college-prep curricula cannot be explained by resource or school factors. Read more

Study Snapshot: The Infrastructure of Social Control: A Multi-Level Counterfactual Analysis of Surveillance, Punishment, Achievement, and Persistence
After controlling for levels of school social disorder and student misbehavior, students attending high-surveillance high schools are more likely to be subjected to in-school suspension than those at low-surveillance schools, have lower math achievement, and are less likely to attend college. Black students are four times more likely to attend a high versus low-surveillance school. Read more

Study Snapshot: Do Students in Gifted Programs Perform Better? Linking Gifted Program Participants to Achievement and Nonachievement Outcomes
Participating in elementary school gifted programs is associated with reading and math achievement for the average student, though the observed relationships are small. Black and low-income students do not see the academic gains that their peers experience when receiving gifted services. There is no evidence that participating in a gifted program is related to nonachievement outcomes such as student absences, engagement in school, or whether a student leaves or stays in a school. Read more

Study Snapshot: Which U.S. Elementary Schoolchildren Are More Likely to Be Frequently Bullied?
Kindergarten children who frequently externalize problem behaviors (i.e., are aggressive or otherwise target their behavior at others) are at high risk of being frequently bullied later in 3rd–5th grades. Children with higher academic achievement and who can better self-regulate their behaviors are at slightly less risk of being frequently bullied in later grades, particularly girls. Black children are at greater risk for reputational bullying, particularly boys. Children with disabilities are more likely to be bullied, including physically and socially. Read more

Study Snapshot: Exploring the Association Between Student-College Match and Student Outcomes Over Time
Over the past 20 years, bachelor’s degree completion rates for students who overmatch (i.e., attend colleges that may appear too academically selective for them) have improved substantially. Over the same time period, bachelor’s degree completion rates for students who undermatch and match have remained stable. When the analysis is restricted to students with relatively high academic qualifications who begin their college careers at four-year institutions, matched and overmatched students’ graduation rates improve over time, but undermatched students’ do not. Read more

Study Snapshot: Students Enrolled in Late-Start-Time Districts Report Higher Academic Achievement and Sleeping More
Later school start times are linked to higher grade point averages and higher proportions of students getting the recommended number of hours of sleep. Read more

Study Snapshot: Characterizing Remote Instruction Provided by Elementary School Teachers during School Closures due to COVID-19
While teachers in spring 2020 felt that 60 percent of their students were prepared for the next grade level, in fall 2020 teachers reported that only 50 percent of students had the skills needed to transition to their class when schools reopened. Additionally, 75 percent of teachers reported spending more time reviewing material from the previous grade, when compared to prior years. Approximately two-thirds of teachers reported in fall 2020 that reading achievement gaps at their school were larger than in previous years; however, only approximately 40 percent of teachers reported providing more reading intervention than in previous years.  Read more

Study Snapshot: How Do Weighted Funding Formulas Affect Charter School Enrollments?
The adoption of a school funding system in California that increased revenues for schools enrolling higher-need students led to an increase in the rate at which charter schools enrolled low-income students. This effect was concentrated among charter schools initially enrolling low-income students at relatively low rates, suggesting that some charters “cream skim” high achieving, wealthier students, but that such behavior also can be mitigated. Read more

AERA Council Votes to Keep Association Meetings Out of States that Pass Anti-Trans Laws
The AERA Council unanimously passed this resolution: Whereas transgender and non-binary youth and educators deserve safe and supportive schools, communities, and workplace environments; Whereas many states across the U.S. are presently considering laws that would be educationally harmful and otherwise devastating to trans and non-binary persons both in and out of schools; Therefore, be it resolved that the American Educational Research Association (AERA) has determined that it will hold no conferences or public events in states or any other locations enacting anti-trans laws until such time as the laws are rescinded or AERA otherwise revisits the issue. Read more

AERA Statement in Support of Transgender and Non-Binary Persons
On the eve of our first-ever virtual conference, we call for AERA members and all others who work in education to accept responsibility for transphobic attitudes, cultures, practices, and policies that threaten and inflict harm on transgender and non-binary students and educators."—AERA President Shaun R. Harper and Executive Director Felice J. Levine. Read more


OECD PISA Report on Student Growth Mindset to Be Released April 8
The Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD) will release a new PISA report on student growth mindset on Thursday, April 8 at 5:00 a.m. ET, followed by a press conference held in collaboration with the American Educational Research Association (AERA) and the Yidan Prize Foundation at 10:30 a.m. ET. Read more

Rich Milner Voted AERA President-Elect; Key Members Elected to AERA Council
H. Richard Milner IV, Cornelius Vanderbilt Distinguished Professor of Education in the Department of Teaching and Learning at Vanderbilt University’s Peabody College of Education and Human Development, has been voted president-elect of AERA. Read more

Statement by AERA Executive Director Felice J. Levine and President Shaun R. Harper on the Shootings in Atlanta and Growing Anti-Asian Violence
"The shooting deaths of eight people, including six women of Asian descent, in Atlanta yesterday is a horrendous tragedy, and just the latest incident in an ever growing wave of mass violence in our country. We extend our deepest sympathy to the loved ones of the victims and to communities in Atlanta and across the United States that have been deeply affected by this senseless assault." —AERA Executive Director Felice J. Levine and President Shaun R. Harper. Read more

Analysis Finds that Digital Picture Books Harm Young Children’s Learning—Unless the Books Have the Right Enhancements
A comprehensive meta-analysis of prior research has found, overall, that children ages 1 to 8 were less likely to understand picture books when they read the digital, versus print, version. However, when digital picture books contain the right enhancements that reinforce the story content, they outperform their print counterparts. Read more

Media Invited to Register for 2021 Virtual Annual Meeting of Education Researchers
Members of the media are invited to register to attend the 2021 AERA Virtual Annual Meeting, April 8-12, for five days of cutting edge research, ideas, and engagement. The 2021 Annual Meeting theme is “Accepting Educational Responsibility.” Read more

Study Finds Parents’ Online School Reviews Correlated with Test Scores and Demographics, Not School Effectiveness
A first-of-its-kind analysis of parents’ reviews of U.S. public K–12 schools, posted primarily from 2009 to 2019 on the popular school information site GreatSchools.org, found that most reviews were written by parents at schools in affluent neighborhoods and provided information that correlated strongly with test scores, a measure that closely tracks race and family income. Learn more

AERA, APA, and NCME Announce the Open Access Release of the Standards for Educational and Psychological Testing
AERA, APA, and NCME announce that the current edition of Standards for Educational and Psychological Testing is now available as a free download in English and Spanish. Readers have the option of downloading the book as a pdf, a pdf eBook, and an ePub eBook. Read more


AERA Executive Director Felice J. Levine to Testify Before Congress about the Impact of COVID-19 on Early Career Scholars and Doctoral Students
Felice J. Levine, executive director of the American Educational Research Association (AERA), will testify before the U.S. House of Representatives Committee on Science, Space, and Technology at a hearing titled “Building Back the U.S. Research Enterprise: COVID Impacts and Recovery” on Thursday, February 25. Read more

Study: Including Videos in College Teaching May Improve Student Learning
A new comprehensive review of research finds that, in many cases, replacing teaching methods with pre-recorded videos leads to small improvements in learning and that supplementing existing content with videos results in strong learning benefits. Learn more

Study: After COVID-19 Hit, Federal Financial Aid Applications Dropped Sharply among Potential First-Year Students​
After the COVID-19 crisis hit last March, federal student aid applications among potential college freshmen in California dropped 14 percent between mid-March and mid-August, relative to prior years. Read more


AERA and Spencer Foundation Release Focus Group Findings on the Impact of the COVID-19 Pandemic on Early Career Scholars and Doctoral Students
AERA and the Spencer Foundation have released a report, Voices from the Field: The Impact of COVID-19 on Early Career Scholars and Doctoral Students, that shares findings from focus groups conducted in spring 2020. Read more

Statement by AERA Executive Director Felice J. Levine, PhD, on the Mob Attack on the U.S. Capitol​
“AERA is horrified by this attack on our democracy; the violence wrought to the heart and soul of all humanity; and the unconscionable acts that threaten the safety of our elected officials, their staffs, and law enforcement and Capitol building workers.”– AERA Executive Director Felice J. Levine, PhD. Read more