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Release: Oct. 16, 2002

Lewis receives Thomas N. Urban Research Award

Cynthia Lewis, an associate professor in the University of Iowa College of Education's department of curriculum and instruction, is the recipient of the sixth annual Thomas N. Urban Research Award.

Lewis received the award for her book "Literacy Practices as Social Acts: Power, Status, and Cultural Norms in the Classroom," which examined the social codes and practices that shape the reading and discussion of literature in a fifth/sixth-grade classroom.

A ceremony was held in her honor Oct. 4 at the Embassy Club in Des Moines, where she was awarded $2,000 from the FINE (First in the Nation in Education) Foundation and $2,000 from the award's namesake, Thomas N. Urban, director and former CEO/chairman of Pioneer Hi-Bred International.

The FINE Foundation created the Thomas N. Urban Research Award to recognize outstanding research by Iowa scholars. The monetary awards help to disseminate the findings of the research.

"I am grateful for the opportunity to disseminate this research, which has implications for research and instruction in literacy," Lewis said.

Lewis earned her Ph.D. in literacy education from the UI in 1995 and joined the UI faculty in 1997. She was promoted to associate professor in 2001. She is the coordinator of the Language, Literacy, and Culture doctoral program, and she has received the National Academy of Education/Spencer Postdoctoral Fellowship and the National Council of Teachers of English Promising Researcher Award.