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Penelope Peterson



Prior to her appointment as dean in September 1997, Penelope Peterson served as University Distinguished Professor of Education at Michigan State University and Sears-Bascom Professor of Education at the University of Wisconsin-Madison. In 1986 she received the Raymond B. Cattell Early Award from the American Educational Research Association (AERA) for her outstanding programmatic research on effective teaching and learning. She served as president of AERA from 1996-1997, and is a fellow of the American Psychological Association and the American Psychological Society. During her tenure as AERA president, Peterson led initiatives to reform the organization and to synthesize research-based knowledge and make it more useful to policy makers and practitioners. More recently, she served as a member of the National Academy of Sciences Study Panel on the "Science of Learning," which produced the volume, How People Learn-a comprehensive study of learning, based on a synthesis of the research on cognition, cognitive neuroscience, learning, and the design of educational environments that foster effective learning. 


Learning and teaching in schools and classrooms, particularly in literacy and mathematics; student and teacher learning in reform contexts; relations among educational research, policy and practice. 


Prawat, R. & Peterson, P. L. (1999). Social constructivist views of learning. In J. Murphy and K. S. Lewis (Eds.), Handbook of Research in Educational Administration (203-226). New York: Macmillan.

Neumann, A., Pallas, A., & Peterson, P. L. (1999). Learning the practice of educational research. In Lagemann, E., Shulman, L. S . & Collins, A. (Eds). Improving Educational Research: Strategies, Training, and Communication (247-288). San Francisco: Jossey-Bass.

Neumann, A. & Peterson, P. L. (Eds.) (1997). Learning From Our Lives: Women, Research, and Autobiography in Education. New York: Teachers College Press.