Forbes receives early career research honor

Forbes receives early career research honor

Cory Forbes
Mekita Rivas | Natural Resources
Cory Forbes

Cory Forbes, associate professor of science education and science literacy coordinator, has been named the 2014 recipient of the National Association for Research in Science Teaching Early Career Research Award.

The award is given annually to a researcher who, within the first seven years after earning his or her doctoral degree, demonstrates the greatest potential to make outstanding and continuing contributions to research in science education. The recipient is selected by scholars in the field of science education.

"It is very rewarding to be recognized by my peers for the research I've conducted during the early stage of my career," Forbes said. "I was both honored and humbled. I want to acknowledge the role others have played in this accomplishment – particularly the mentorship of my doctoral adviser, Betsy Davis, (which) provided a strong model for educational research that has helped me tremendously as an early-career researcher. I also thank my current and former graduate students: Mandy Biggers, Laura Zangori, Jaime Sabel and Tina Vo."

A NARST member for more than a decade, Forbes is actively involved with the organization. He reviews conference proposals each year, currently serves as an editorial board member for the Journal of Research in Science Teaching and has served on the JRST award committee.

Forbes will be presented with the award at the NARST awards luncheon on April 1 in Pittsburgh.

"It's an engaging community that spans the worlds of scholarship and practice," he said. "I always learn a lot from the work shared at the conference and it's a great opportunity to connect with colleagues."

Forbes holds undergraduate and graduate degrees from the University of Kansas, in addition to master's and doctoral degrees from the University of Michigan. He joined UNL in September 2013 as part of an IANR hiring initiative, which aims to fill 36 new positions primarily in the areas of science literacy, stress biology, computational sciences, healthy humans and healthy systems for agricultural production and natural resources.

"We are very excited for Cory in receiving this award," said John Carroll, director of the School of Natural Resources. "He is an excellent leader for our new team of science literacy faculty."

Forbes is one of four science literacy faculty members who were all part of the initiative's first hiring wave in summer 2013.

"My new position at UNL, and specifically in SNR, affords me many opportunities to continue to pursue a robust research and development agenda focused on curricular and instructional components of K-12 science learning environments grounded in food, water and energy systems," Forbes said.

Through his work on externally-funded projects, Forbes has pursued an active discipline-based educational research program, including studies of third grade students' learning about biological structure and function/hydrologic systems, as well as elementary teachers' enactment of science curriculum modules.

"I am incredibly excited to be a part of the interdisciplinary and collaborative culture of UNL, IANR and SNR, and to explore new projects that build upon my past and present work," he said.

Founded in 1928, NARST is a worldwide organization of professionals committed to the improvement of science teaching and learning through research.