Educational Psychology Professor Joe Robinson honored by UI Social and Behavioral Research Council

by The College of Education  /   Apr 29, 2013

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Joseph Robinson, assistant professor of Educational Psychology, has been recognized for his paper, "Bullying explains only part of LGBTQ-Heterosexual disparities: Implications for policy and practice." He was selected as the co-winner of the inaugural Junior Faculty Best Paper Award by the Social and Behavioral Research Council.

The award recognizes the best paper(s) published in the preceding year (February 2012–February 2013) by a junior (assistant professor) tenure track faculty in social and behavioral sciences. Robinson was nominated by Professor Helen Neville.

"In this study, Robinson and Dorothy Espelage explored the extent to which LGBTQ-heterosexual disparities in bullying explain disparities in suicidal ideation suicide attempts, and unexcused absences," Neville wrote in her nomination letter. "They undertook this study because they observed that many school districts were implementing anti-bullying policies, but they weren’t putting into place other policies or programs that might help LGBTQ youth (e.g., incorporating LGBTQ issues in curricula, supporting gay-straight alliances). They wanted to empirically investigate if bullying alone explained these disparities."

He and other award winners were recognized at a ceremony on April 23 to celebrate the accomplishments of the campus' social and behavioral science community.

The council, which received a number of worthy nominations for the award, calls it "a well-deserved recognition" of Robinson's commitment to academic excellence.

Robinson’s research focuses on the use of novel and rigorous methods to study equity and policy, particularly concerning sexual minorities, women, and language minorities. With his colleagues, he has recently examined how bullying relates to psychological disparities between sexual-minority and heterosexual youth, how teachers’ expectations of girls’ and boys’ math abilities predict growth in the gender gap, and how well-intentioned education policies may hinder achievement for English language learners.