P. David Pearson

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Nominated by: Sharon J. Washington

P. David Pearson is a revolutionary scholar/practitioner. As a mentor, researcher, and educator, his school-based initiatives on literacy have improved reading achievement in students throughout the world.

P. David Pearson is a faculty member in the programs in Language and Literacy and Cognition and Development at the Graduate School of Education at the University of California, Berkeley, where he served as Dean from 2001-2010. Current research projects include Seeds of Science/Roots of Reading–a Research and Development effort with colleagues at Lawrence Hall of Science in which reading, writing, and language are employed as tools to foster the development of knowledge and inquiry in science–and the Strategic Education Research Partnership–a collaboration between UC Berkeley, Stanford, and the SFUSD designed to embed research within the portfolio of school-based issues and priorities. Prior to coming to Berkeley in 2001, he served on the faculties of education at Michigan State, Illinois, and Minnesota.

Awards include the 1989 Oscar Causey Award (NRC) for contributions to reading research, the 1990 William S. Gray Citation of Merit (IRA) for contributions to reading research and practice, the 2005 Albert J. Harris Award (IRA) for the year’s best reading disability publication, and the 2003 Alan Purves Award (NCTE) for a publication impacting practice. In 2006 the University of Minnesota honored him with the Alumni Outstanding Achievement Award, and in 2010 AERA gave him Distinguished Contributions to Research in Education Award.

He is the founding editor of the Handbook of Reading Research now in its fourth volume, he edited Reading Research Quarterly and the Review of Research in Education, and he has served on the Editorial Review Board for some 20 educational journals. Professor Pearson received his B.A. in History from the University of California at Berkeley, taught elementary school in California for several years, and went on to complete his Ph.D. in Reading Education at the University of Minnesota. He completed post-doctoral study at the University of Texas, Austin and Stanford University.

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