Manuel Luis Espinoza, PhD

School of Education and Human Development Assistant Professor Manuel Luis Espinoza, PhD, has been named a 2012 National Academy of Education (NAEd)/Spencer Postdoctoral Fellow.

The focus of Espinoza’s work, which already is in progress, is “rooted in a trio of approaches to education – social interactional studies of classrooms, philosophical investigations into the value of learning, and legal examinations of landmark educational cases. The project seeks to establish an empirical approach to the study of learning in school settings as potentially ‘rights-generative’ activity.”

Espinoza’s research questions are:

  1. What does interaction that manifests educational rights look and sound like in a classroom?
  2. What are its distinctive characteristics in patterns of classroom organization and discourse?
  3. How does such interaction differ from more conventional classroom interaction that does not manifest educational rights?

The $55,000 award will support his research “to analyze the rich audio-video and writing archives of a summer educational apprenticeship for migrant students.”

His interest in the subject continues work he did as a doctoral student at the University of California Los Angeles (UCLA). He plans to create a series of ‘touchstone’ illustrations to show how educational rights develop in and through talk-in–interaction in the school setting.

The NAEd administers the postdoctoral fellowship program with funding from the Spencer Foundation. Since the program’s inception, more than 700 current and former fellows, including many of today’s strongest education researchers, have been awarded this prestigious fellowship.

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