Levy Awarded Grant to Study Adolescent Political Engagement and Tolerance

Albany, NY (March 11, 2015) – Dr. Brett Levy, assistant professor in Educational Theory and Practice, has been awarded a grant from the McCormick Foundation for his project, "A Closer View of a Catch-22: An Exploration of Adolescents’ Development of Political Engagement and Political Tolerance through an Innovative Curriculum."

Dr. Levy will examine the mechanisms involved in shaping adolescents’ political engagement and tolerance. What makes this study different from prior studies, which have often looked at political engagement and political tolerance separately, is that this will closely explore how adolescents’ political engagement and political tolerance relate to each other over time. By developing a greater understanding of how structured learning experiences can support adolescents’ motivation for civic action and development of civic values, this study’s findings will facilitate the design of instruction that can support a more enlightened and active citizenry.

Dr. Levy received his PhD at the University of Michigan, and was then visiting assistant professor of social studies education at the University of Wisconsin-Madison. His dissertation on adolescents’ political efficacy and engagement won the Exemplary Dissertation Award from the National Council for the Social Studies (2012). Dr. Levy has published articles in Educational Psychology, Journal of Teacher Education, and Theory and Research in Social Education. He has experience on a number of grant-supported projects, including as principal investigator on a grant from the Spencer Foundation. Dr. Levy has taught middle school social studies as well as a variety of graduate and undergraduate courses in social studies education. The goals of his work have been to strengthen public education for diverse learners by examining and developing programs in teacher preparation, professional development, social studies education, and educational technology.