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Imogene Okes Award
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For Outstanding Research in Adult Education


Nominations are invited for the Imogene Okes Award. This award recognizes persons whose research contributes significantly to the advancement of adult and continuing education and honors the memory of Imogene Okes, whose reports on adult education participation have been widely used and quoted in the field. It is given annually by the American Association for Adult and Continuing Education (AAACE) for a report of original research done by single or joint authors and published in English in the previous year for a work that reflects the ideals for which Imogene Okes stood. Nominated works should exemplify outstanding and original research in adult education.


  • Published in the previous or current year.
  • Single or jointly authored original research publications are eligible. Theses and dissertations are not eligible, but books or articles derived from them are eligible.
  • Nominee must be able to accept the award personally at the AAACE Conference.
  • A publication may not be nominated for both the Houle and Okes Awards.
  • Nominee must be a member of AAACE (award includes one year membership if not a current member).

Criteria — original research nominated must:

  • Be written in English.
  • Be a specific piece of research and not a review of accumulated projects across a professional lifetime.
  • Exemplify high standards of scholarship and research.
  • Be well-organized and well-written.
  • Have significant implications for adult and continuing education.

Letter of Nomination should include:

  • Award identification: Identify the nomination by typing at the top of the page: “AAACE National Awards Nomination: Okes Award for Outstanding Research.”
  • Submission information: Name of the work, year published, name of publication, name of publisher, publisher’s address.
  • Author(s) information: Name, job title, organization, address, phone number, fax, and email address.
  • Nominator information (if different from author): Name, job title, organization, address, phone number, fax, and email address.
  • Brief statement as to why the submission is suitable for the award.
  • Signature: Nominators must sign and date the letter of nomination.


  • The 2020 award deadline for nominations was June 5, 2020.  2021 nominations will be open March 1, 2021.
  • Nominations must include the letter and the nominated publication on a PDF document and linked to the Nomination Form.
  • All information and copies of the publication MUST arrive by June 5, 2020.

Selection Process:

The AAACE Awards Committee works with the Commission of Professors of Adult Education (CPAE) to provide general oversight for the Okes Award process. The Okes Award Committee consists of five CPAE/AAACE members. Whenever possible, the most recent recipient(s) of the Okes Award is asked to Chair or Co-Chair the committee for the following year. The committee may choose not to make the award at its discretion.


  • 2019 - Dr. Ramon B. Goings, "Making Up for Lost Time: The Transition Experiences of Nontraditional Black Male Undergraduates"
  • 2018 - Dr. Bo Chang, "Patterns of Knowledge Construction"
  • 2017 - Dr. Elizabeth Tisdell, Dr. Robin Redmon Wright, Dr. Edward W. Taylor, "Adult Education Faculty and Programs in North America"
  • 2016 - No Award
  • 2015 -  Dr. Eric Platt & Dr. Lilian H. Hill, University of Southern Mississippi, "Research Project: Spatial practices and the learned sex trade in the city that care forgot"
  • 2014 -  Wendy Jean Sonstrom, Ph.D., John R. Rachal, Ed.D., & Richard S. Mohn, Ph.D., University of Southern Mississippi, “The Commission of Professors of Adult Education 2008 Standards as evidenced in the curricula of doctoral education in North America.” (Published 2013 in Adult Education Quarterly 63 (2), 147-164.)
  • 2013 - David S. Stein, Constance E. Wanstreet, Paula Slagle, Lynn A. Trinko, and Michelle Lutz, “From ‘hello’ to higher-order thinking: The effect of coaching and feedback on online chats” published in Internet and Higher Education, 16, 78-84, 2012
  • 2012 - Ralph G. Brockett and Susan L. Stockdale, “Development of the PRO-SDLS: A Measure of Self-Direction in Learning Based on the Personal Responsibility Orientation Model,” published in Adult Education Quarterly, Vol 61, No. 2, pp. 161-180, 2011
  • 2012 - John B. Collins, and Daniel D. Pratt, “The Teaching Perspectives Inventory at 10 Years and 100,000 Respondents: Reliability and Validity of a Teacher Self-Report Inventory,” published in Adult Education Quarterly, Vol. 61, No.4, pp. 358-375, 2011
  • 2011 – No Award
  • 2010 - Esther Prins and Kai A. Schafft for “Individual and Structural Attributions for Poverty and Persistence in Family Literacy Programs: The Resurgence of the Culture of Poverty” Teachers College Record, Vol. 111, No. 9, pp. 2280-2310, 2009
  • 2009 – No Award
  • 2008 - Marilyn McKinley Parrish, and Edward W. Taylor for “Seeking Authenticity: Women and Learning In The Catholic Worker Movement” Adult Education Quarterly, Vol. 57, No. 3, pp. 221-247, 2007
  • 2005 – 2007 – No Award
  • 2004 - John R. Rachal for Outstanding Research in Adult Education for “A Symposium” Adult Education Quarterly, Vol. 54, No. 1, pp. 59-72, 2003
  • 2003 – No Award
  • 2002 - Michael R. Welton for “Little Mosie from the Margaree: A Biography of Moses Michael Coady.” Thomas Educational Publishers, Niagara, NY, 2001
  • 2001 - Ben Salt, Ron Cervero, and Andrew Herod for "Workers' Education and Neoliberal Globalization: An Adequate Response to Transnational Corporations?" Adult Education Quarterly, 51, pp. 9-31, 2000.
  • 2000 – No Award
  • 1999 - John Rachal for "We'll Never Turn Back: Adult Education and the Struggle for Citizenship in Mississippi's Freedom Summer." American Educational Research Journal, 35, pp. 167-198, 1998.
  • 1998 Arthur Wilson and Ronald Cervero for "The Song Remains the Same: The Selective Tradition of Technical Rationality in Adult Education Program Planning Theory." International Journal of Lifelong Education, 16, 84-108, 1997.
  • 1997 – No Award
  • 1996 David Mills, Ronald Cervero, Christine Langone, and Arthur Wilson for “The Impact of Interests, Power Relationships, and Organizational Structure on Program Planning Practice: A Case Study.” Adult Education Quarterly, 46, 1-16, 1995.
  • 1995 Carol E. Kasworm and Sally S. Blowers for "Adult Undergraduate Students: Patterns of Learning Involvement." Final Research Report. Knoxville: University of Tennessee, 1994. (ED 376 321)
  • 1994 - No Award
  • 1993 Hanna Arlene Fingeret and Susan Danin for "They Really Put a Hurtin' on My Brain": Learning in Literacy Volunteers of New York City. New York: Literacy Volunteers of NYC, 1991.
  • 1992 Juliet Merrifield, Center for Literacy Studies, University of Tennessee, 1989
  • 1991 Hal Beder for "Adult Literacy: Issues for Policy and Practice." Malabar, FL: Krieger, 1991.
  • 1988 Harold Stubblefield for "Towards a History of Adult Education in America." Dover, NH: Croom-Helm, 1988.
  • 1987 David W. Stewart for "Adult Learning in America: Eduard Lindeman and His Agenda for Lifelong Education." Melbourne, FL: Krieger, 1987.
  • 1986 Stephen Brookfield for "Understanding and Facilitating Adult Learning." San Francisco: Jossey- Bass, 1986.
  • 1984 Carol B. Aslanian and Henry M. Brickell for "Americans in Transition." New York: College Entrance Examination Board, 1980.
  • 1982 Richard E. Anderson and Elizabeth S. Kasl for "The Costs and Financing of Adult Education and Training." Lexington, KY: Heath, 1982.
  • 1981 Cyril Houle for "Continuing Learning in the Professions." San Francisco: Jossey-Bass, 1980.
  • 1980 Jack Mezirow, Alan Knox, and Gordon Darkenwald for "Last Gamble on Education: Dynamics of Adult Basic Education." Washington: Adult Education of the USA, 1975.
  • 1978 Alan Knox for "Adult Development and Learning: A Handbook on Individual Growth and Competence in the Adult Years," San Francisco: Wiley & Sons, 1977.
  • 1976 Roger Boshier for "Factor Analysts at Large: A Critical Review of Motivational Orientation Literature." Adult Education, 27(2), (1976), 24-47.

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