Smith wins literacy award

Cristine Crispin Smith, associate professor, College of Education’s Department of Educational Policy, Research and Administration, has been awarded the Kenneth J. Mattran Award for Promoting Literacy Nationally and Internationally by the Commission on Adult Basic Education (COABE). This award is given to a practitioner with five or more years of adult education teaching experience who participates in school and community activities, who understands the characteristics of the adult learner and who is committed to the adult/continuing education profession.

Smith has a distinguished record of achievement in promoting literacy at the national and international levels through which she has demonstrated professional commitment to the field of adult basic education. She is a nationally recognized researcher and expert on teacher change and professional development in adult education. As Deputy Director of the National Center for the Study of Adult Learning and Literacy (NCSALL) for six years, Smith served as principal investigator of the NCSALL staff development study “How Teachers Change: A Study of Professional Development in Adult Basic Education” and  led NCSALL’s Research to Practice initiative focused on “translating” research to classroom-friendly, evidence-based practices that engage adult educators and also on ensuring that academic research is grounded in the realities of the adult education field and its most pressing needs.

One of her recent and often cited articles is “The great dilemma of improving teacher quality in adult learning and literacy” published in the journal of Adult Basic Education and Literacy (2010).

Smith is principal investigator of a ground-breaking, longitudinal study that follows over 200 adult learners in the U.S. The Adult Transitions Longitudinal Study (ATLAS) is a five-year research project to document the educational and economic outcomes for adult students who participate in the New England ABE-to-College Transition Project.