Reprinted from the Cornell Chronicle, March 8, 2017.
Charles Brainerd, professor and chair of the Department of Human Development in the College of Human Ecology, and 13 other scholars nationwide have been elected the newest members of the National Academy of Education (NAEd) for their scholarly contributions in the field of education research.
NAEd advances high-quality education research and its use in policy and practice. It consists of 209 U.S. members and 11 foreign associates who are elected on the basis of outstanding scholarship related to education.
“It was not something that I anticipated and came as a surprise,” Brainerd said. “For me, this is another indicator of the international stature of the human development department.”
Brainerd joins fellow Cornell NAEd members Stephen Ceci, Ronald Ehrenberg, Robert Sternberg and Kenneth Strike.
Brainerd has published more than 300 research articles and chapters and more than 20 books. His research covers human memory and decision-making, statistics and mathematical modeling, cognitive neuroscience, learning, intelligence, cognitive development, learning disability and child abuse.
Within the field, Brainerd’s research is known for having had deep impacts on educational, developmental and cognitive psychology, and he is credited with major breakthroughs across both his theoretical and empirical contributions.
His current research centers on the relation between memory and higher reasoning abilities in children and adults, also focusing on false-memory phenomena, cognitive neuroscience, aging and neurocognitive impairment.
Academy members are tapped to serve on expert study panels and are also engaged in NAEd’s professional development programs, including postdoctoral and dissertation fellowship programs.
“It’s an opportunity to serve,” said Brainerd. “The national academy forms committees and study groups of leading scholars to work on important issues in higher education – important and prominent questions of the day – and provides advice and leadership on those questions.”
Stephen D'Angelo is assistant director of communications for the College of Human Ecology.