Jessica Nina Lester Receives APA Award

Tuesday, February 20, 2018

Jessica Nina Lester, associate professor in Inquiry Methodology in the IU School of Education’s Department of Counseling and Educational Psychology has been recognized by the American Psychological Association, Division 5, with the 2018 Distinguished Early Career Contributions in Qualitative Inquiry Award.

This award is presented to an individual who has made outstanding contributions to qualitative research methods. This is not the first time Lester’s contributions to the field of qualitative research have been recognized. In 2014, she was awarded the American Educational Research Association’s 2014 Division D Early Career Award in Measurement and Research Methodology.

“I’m very honored by this award and particularly grateful for the heartfelt nomination submitted by my colleagues. I have been privileged to participate in work that I find meaningful and appreciate that my colleagues have acknowledged my contributions to the field.”

Lester’s research focuses on the study and development of qualitative research methodologies at a theoretical, conceptual, and technical level. Much of her empirical research focuses on the study of everyday and institutional social interactions in both education and mental health contexts.

She was nominated by Michelle O’Reilly, a Senior Lecturer at the University of Leicester in the United Kingdom, with additional letters of support written by Trena Paulus, a Professor of Qualitative Research at the University of Georgia and Phil Carspecken, a Professor of Inquiry Methodology at the IU School of Education.

“Dr. Lester’s productivity and the significance of her work to the academic community as well as to students and colleagues is nothing short of astonishing,” writes Phil Carspecken. “Her accomplishments in conducting and publishing research are absolutely outstanding.”

The Award will be presented in the Division 5 Award Symposium at the Annual Convention of the American Psychological Association in San Francisco in August, 2018.