American Psychological Foundation

APF-funded research will expand on revered educational theory

Can Kenneth and Mamie Clark's groundbreaking 1950s research help explain today's educational achievement gap? Michael Strambler, PhD, of the Yale University School of Medicine hopes to find out with the inaugural $10,000 APF Kenneth B. and Mamie P. Clark Early Career Grant.

On average, black and Hispanic students underperform by about two grade levels compared with their white peers, according to the National Assessment of Education Progress. Using the Clarks' concept of "sense of self," Strambler is exploring how ethnic minority students' perceived social status, community and school affect how they view themselves academically, and how this in turn affects academic outcomes. Strambler will be collecting data from eighth-grade students to test whether social status impacts academic performance via academic identification and alternative identification.

This year's Kenneth B. and Mamie P. Clark Grant will support a graduate student.

APF grant supports longitudinal research on adoption and same-sex couples

Thanks to a $15,000 Wayne F. Placek grant, Rachel Farr, PhD, is continuing the first longitudinal comparison of adoptive families between lesbian or gay and heterosexual parents with school-age children.

The APF Placek grant encourages research to increase the general public's understanding of homosexuality and sexual orientation and to alleviate the stress that lesbian women, gay men, bisexuals and transgender people experience now and in the future.

Farr, a psychology professor at the University of Massachusetts, Amherst, is studying the adjustment of children adopted by same-sex couples to inform policy debates about whether prospective parents' sexual orientation should be considered when screening adoptive families.

Farr's work has important ramifications for the more than 100,000 U.S. children waiting to be adopted.

Upcoming APF deadlines


For more information on APF's grants and scholarships, please contact Parie Kadir, Program Officer, at (202) 336-5984.