Feb 19 2019

Nancy’s work in the history of education has been seminal, for it topples conventional wisdom on the relationship between the growth of public education and the growth of the nation-state.

Walter Parker

Nancy Beadie, an education historian at the University of Washington College of Education whose scholarship exploring the creation and growth of American schools in the early national period overturned conventional wisdom, has been named a Fellow of the American Educational Research Association.

The AERA Fellows Program honors education researchers with substantial research accomplishments, conveys the association’s commitment to excellence in research and emphasizes the importance of sustaining exemplary research in the field. The selection of Beadie to join the AERA’s 2019 Class of Fellows was based on nomination by her peers and approval of the AERA Council.

Beadie’s research focuses on historical relationships among education, economics and state formation at the local, state, national and international levels. She is author of “Education and the Creation of Capital in the Early Republic” (2010), which received the outstanding book award from the History of Education Society, and is currently senior editor of History of Education Quarterly, the premier journal in the field of education history.

“Nancy’s work in the history of education has been seminal, for it topples conventional wisdom on the relationship between the growth of public education and the growth of the nation-state,” said her colleague Professor Walter Parker. “We have come to believe that the state created schools; her research shows that, to a surprising extent, it was the reverse.”

Beadie teaches courses on the history of education and education reform in the United States, the history of urban education, education as the transfer of culture, historical research methods in education and the social history of gender in education. Her previous work includes co-editing “Chartered Schools: Two Hundred Years of Independent Academies in the United States, 1727-1925” and authoring two articles for which she received the prize for Best Article Published in a Refereed Journal awarded by the History of Education Society.

Her current book project, “Paramount Duty of the State: Education and State Formation in the U.S., 1846-1912,” analyzes the significance of education in federal policy and the process of state (re)formation during the rise of the U.S. as a global economic and imperial power at the end of the 19th century. 

Beadie has served as president of the History of Education Society and led the History and Historiography Division of AERA.

Beadie is the College’s seventh current or emeritus faculty member to be named a Fellow, joining Robert Abbott, James Banks, John Bransford, Walter Parker, Sheila Valencia and Kenneth Zeichner.

Watch Prof. Beadie's EduTalk: Path Dependence in Federal Education Policy

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