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Rosalyn Barnes, Ed.D., GSE ’21 Winner of the National 2021 Carnegie Project on the Education Doctorate Dissertation in Practice of the Year Award


The Fordham Graduate School of Education’s Educational Leadership, Administration and Policy (ELAP)  program is proud to announce that Rosalyn Barnes, Ed.D., GSE ‘21, is the 2021 Carnegie Project on the Education Doctorate (CPED) Dissertation in Practice of the Year Award winner, for her work entitled: Transforming School-Wide Professional Development Using Culturally Relevant Pedagogy to Engage Black Boys in Literacy.

This prestigious award honors scholarly practitioner work that adheres to the CPED definition of Dissertation in Practice (DIP): “scholarly endeavor that impacts a complex problem of practice.”

Barnes was driven to pursue this research because during her tenure, Black boys at her school were the lowest performing subgroup on school, district, and state literacy assessments. With an educational background in literacy – her passion – she wanted to get to the root cause of this problem and test some ideas to improve the performance and achievement of Black boys.

Margaret T. Orr, Ed.D., GSE ELAP chair, stated on Barnes’ nomination, “We believe that Rosalyn Barnes’ Dissertation in Practice is an exemplar in a focused, collaborative problem-solving process, innovative in its approach to tackling a complex, persistent problem and solution testing process, using multiple sources of evidence and applying rigorous inquiry methods. She and her teachers creatively developed several data collection tools to support their inquiry work including empathy interview guides, a culturally responsive teaching observation guide, and parallel student and teacher surveys to measure cultural responsiveness and engagement. We are extremely impressed with the rigor, innovativeness, feasibility, and impact of her work, particularly as a foundation for further school improvement in reading and other content areas. We believe her work is a useful model for others as well.”

Judging for this highly acclaimed national award is through a committee comprised of faculty members representing a diverse group of university members, utilizing a set of CPED-defined criteria that distinguishes the dissertation of scholarly practitioners as a work grounded in high-quality research with the potential to impact educational practice.

The Fordham Graduate School of Education ELAP team developed a Dissertation in Practice model that has a distinct design, organized around a five-pillar dissertation outline.


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