2020 Outstanding Doctoral Research Award

2020 Outstanding Doctoral Research Award

The 2020 recipient of the NARST Outstanding Doctoral Research Award (ODRA) is:

Dr. Neta Shaby, Postdoctoral Scholar, College of Education, Oregon State University

Dr. Shaby received this award for her dissertation titled "Understanding the Interactions in a Science Museums - A Longitudinal Study of Elementary School Students".

This honor recognizes that Neta Shaby’s dissertation was judged by her NARST colleagues on the Outstanding Doctoral Research Award Selection Subcommittee to have the greatest merit and significance in the field of Science Education from among all dissertations nominated for the award this year. Dr. Neta Shaby completed her dissertation at Ben-Gurion University of the Negev in Israel, November 18, 2018, under the direction of Drs. Orit Ben Zvi-Assaraf of Ben-Gurion University and Tali Tal of the Technion in Israel.

Science museums can play an important role in science education. Neta Shaby followed the elementary school students from a marginalized community who visited a science museum over three years. A qualitative interpretative research approach was used to construct a multi-dimensional picture of the students’ experience. In particular, she focused on (a) the characteristics of museum exhibits that promoted student engagement, (b) the way students build off their prior engagement with exhibits in subsequent visits, and (c) the types of interactions that develop between museum educators and the students.

Since 1928, NARST has promoted research in science education and the communication of knowledge generated by research with the ultimate goal of helping all learners achieve science literacy. NARST achieves this goal by: 1) encouraging and supporting the application of diverse research methods and theoretical perspectives from multiple disciplines to the investigation of teaching and learning in science; 2) communicating science education research findings to researchers, practitioners, and policy makers; and, 3) cooperating with other educational and scientific societies to influence educational policies.