DALLAS (SMU) – Candace Walkington, an associate professor in Teaching and Learning at SMU (Southern Methodist University), is a recipient of the Presidential Early Career Award for Scientists and Engineers (PECASE). Announced by the White House, the award is the highest honor bestowed by the U.S. government to outstanding scientists and engineers who are beginning their independent research careers and who show exceptional promise for leadership in science and technology.

Walkington, who works in SMU’s Simmons School of Education & Human Development, is among 11 selected from Texas to receive the award. She was nominated by the U.S. Department of Education.

Her research focuses on how abstract mathematical ideas can become connected to students’ concrete, everyday experiences so concepts are more understandable. By examining students’ out-of-school areas of interest and their intended careers, her research looks at “personalizing” mathematics instruction.

For more on her research, see the following:

Walkington, C., Clinton, V., & Shivraj, P. (2018). How Readability Factors Are Differentially Associated with Performance for Students of Different Backgrounds When Solving Math Word Problems. American Educational Research Journal55(2), 362-414. DOI: 10.3102/0002831217737028

Walkington, C. & Bernacki, M. (2018). Personalization of Instruction: Design Dimensions and Implications for Cognition. Journal of Experimental Education86(1), 50-68.

Walkington, C. (2013). Using learning technologies to personalize instruction to student interests: The impact of relevant contexts on performance and learning outcomes. Journal of Educational Psychology105(4), 932-945.