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Education researcher named national postdoctoral fellow

June 15, 2010

KALAMAZOO--An education researcher at Western Michigan University has received a 2010-11 National Academy of Education-Spencer Postdoctoral Fellowship, which includes a $55,000 monetary award.

Dr. Jessaca Spybrook, WMU assistant professor of education leadership, research and technology, was among 20 applicants selected as fellows this year from a competitive pool of more than 160 scholars of education across the country.

The NAEd-Spencer Postdoctoral Fellowship program is administered by the National Academy of Education, an honorary educational society. It is the oldest source of support for education research, nationally or internationally, for recent recipients of doctoral degrees.

Funding comes from the Spencer Foundation, which seeks to improve education around the world, largely by providing financial support for educator training and high-quality research.

The nonresidential fellowship supports early-career scholars working in critical research areas that will make significant scholarly contributions to the field of education. The program also promotes skills and career growth through professional development activities involving NAE members.

Spybrook came to WMU in 2008 after earning a bachelor's, master's and doctoral degree from the University of Michigan. Prior to pursuing a university teaching career, Spybrook was a seventh grade math teacher for Romulus Middle School in Romulus, Mich., from 1999 to 2001.

She teaches in the Department of Education Leadership, Research and Technology and is an adjunct faculty member for WMU's interdisciplinary doctoral program in evaluation. Since 2008, she also has been serving as an ad-hoc reviewer for the Journal for Research on Educational Effectiveness.

Spybrook focuses her research on quantitative research methods, evidence-based practices in education, experimental design and statistical power, and program evaluation.

Among her current projects is "Examining the Changes in Methodology that Occur Between the Design and Implementation of Field Trials in Education." She is the principal investigator for that project, which is being funded by a $300,000 award from the U.S. Department of Education's Institute of Education Sciences.

NAEd-Spencer Fellows receive $55,000 for a period of up to two years to pursue critical research projects in education. Spybrook will use the funding to work on a project titled "Detecting Intervention Effects Across Context: An Examination of the Power of Experimental Studies Launched by the Institute of Education Sciences."

For more information about the National Academy of Education-Spencer Postdoctoral Fellowship, contact the National Academy of Education at info@naeducation.org or (202) 334-2341.

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Media contact: Jeanne Baron, (269) 387-8400, jeanne.baron@wmich.edu

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