Public Release: 

University of Arizona scholar to present AERA Brown Lecture in Education Research

American Educational Research Association

WASHINGTON, D.C., October 5, 2009--Luis C. Moll, a University of Arizona scholar and expert on the connection among culture, psychology and education, will deliver the American Educational Research Association's 6th Annual Brown Lecture in Education Research this month. AERA's Brown Lecture features significant scholarship that advances equality and equity in education.

The 2009 Brown Lecture, "Mobilizing Culture, Language and Educational Practices: Fulfilling the Promises of Mendez and Brown," will be presented on Thursday, October 22, at 6:00 p.m. in the Ronald Reagan Building and International Trade Center in Washington, D.C. A reception will follow.

Moll's lecture will commemorate the importance of the U.S. Supreme Court's 1954 landmark Brown v. Board of Education decision on educational equity in this country and also honor the 1946 Mendez v. Westminster case, which represented the first major and successful challenge to segregated schooling in California. As with Brown, this case also featured social science research as testimony to the harms of segregation.

In this lecture, Moll will highlight the sociocultural and education conditions of Mexican American children and how changing demographics serve as a catalyst for action. The Méndez family, who were agricultural workers, assumed leadership, at great risk, in bringing this case to fruition. With the Mendez case as backdrop, Moll will then address contemporary education issues within the social context produced by continuing major demographic changes.

Moll is a Professor in the College of Education's Department of Language, Reading and Culture and previously served as the College's associate dean for academic affairs. His research has influenced lines of education research, sociology, and cultural anthropology, specifically focusing on education practice that has improved education experiences of underserved students, particularly Latino/a children.

In major research studies, Moll has analyzed the quality of classroom teaching, examined literacy instruction in English and Spanish, studied how learning takes place in the broader social contexts of household and community life, and attempted to establish pedagogical relationships among these domains. In addition, he has conducted research on transnational family life in the U.S.-Mexico borderlands. He is presently undertaking a longitudinal study of biliteracy development in children and the language ideologies that mediate that development.


Moll's substantive research has been supported by grants from the National Science Foundation, as well as the Andrew Mellon Foundation, The Spencer Foundation, and the W.K. Kellogg Foundation.

Among his professional honors, Moll is a Fellow of the American Educational Research Association and an elected member of the National Academy of Education. For his scholarly work, he has been recognized by Texas Christian University with The Green Honor's Chair, School of Education in 1999 and has received the Henry T. Trueba Lifetime Achievement Award, presented by the Journal of Latinos and Education in 2005. He received his Ph.D. degree from the University of California, Los Angeles, and was a pre-doctoral fellow at The Rockefeller University's Institute for Comparative Human Development.

Moll was selected by the 2009 Brown Lecture Selection Committee, chaired by Kris D. Gutierrez, who was also chair of AERA's Social Justice Action Committee (SAJC). Gutierrez is AERA President-elect. Other Selection Committee members were Zenaida Aguirre-Munoz and James Earl Davis, SAJC Committee Members; Lorraine M. McDonnell, then AERA President; Carol D. Lee, now AERA President; Felice J. Levine, AERA Executive Director; and George L. Wimberly, AERA Director of Social Justice and Professional Development.

The AERA Brown Lecture was inaugurated in 2004. Edmund W. Gordon, Director of the Institute of Urban and Minority Education at Teachers College, Columbia University, delivered the first Brown Lecture. Other Lecturers include Claude M. Steele, Columbia University; Linda Darling-Hammond, Stanford University; Margaret Beale Spencer, University of Chicago; and Stephen W. Raudenbush, University of Chicago.

To RSVP for this public lecture, please e-mail or call (202) 238-3234.

To reach AERA Communications, call (202)238-3200; Helaine Patterson ( or Lucy Cunningham (

The American Educational Research Association (AERA) is the national interdisciplinary research association for approximately 25,000 scholars who undertake research in education. Founded in 1916, AERA aims to advance knowledge about education, to encourage scholarly inquiry related to education, and to promote the use of research to improve education and serve the public good.

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