The award honours Brian Sutton-Smith. Professor Sutton-Smith was awarded the first Education PhD in New Zealand in 1954. The Sutton-Smith Doctoral Award is awarded annually for an excellent Doctoral thesis by an NZARE member. The Award was approved at the 2004 NZARE Annual General Meeting, awarded for the first time in 2006. The award consists of a written citation and a cash prize of $1000.
2008: Helen Dixon, University of Auckland
2007: Tony Dowden, Massey University
2006: Veronica O'Toole, University of Canterbury
Purpose of the Award
This award honours Brian Sutton-Smith. In 1954 Professor Sutton-Smith was awarded the first Education PhD in New Zealand. The Sutton-Smith Doctoral Award is awarded annually for an excellent Doctoral thesis by an NZARE member.
In making its decision, a sub-committee of NZARE Council will consider the theses' contributions to new knowledge in education, which may be empirical, theoretical and/or methodological. Contributions to educational theory, practice, policy, innovation, and research methodology will be considered equally. Originality, thoroughness and high quality design and analysis will also be considered.
The Award was approved at the 2004 NZARE Annual General Meeting, awarded for the first time in 2006. The award consists of a written citation and a cash prize of $1000. The NZARE Council retains the right to make no award in any one year. The Award will be conferred at the NZARE annual conference, and notified in the Association's publication Input (He Pātaka Tuku Kōrero) and on its website.
Due to the budgetary constraints that have arisen since the Covid19 pandemic and the cancellation of the NZARE 2020 Conference, NZARE Council have made the difficult decision to cancel all awards for 2020. Please note that we will be accepting nominations for those students who would have qualified for all 2020 student award categories to also be eligible for the 2021 round of student awards.
The Nominator is to be the Chief/Main Supervisor and must be a current NZARE member. The Nominee must be a current NZARE member. Theses nominated must have been undertaken in New Zealand within a New Zealand tertiary institution. Theses nominated must have been undertaken at a New Zealand and/or have clear implications for New Zealand education. Theses must have been completed and examined between 1 August and 31 July of the calendar year prior to the closing date for nominations which is 1 August. Theses completed after this date may be nominated for the following year’s award. Nominations should be forwarded electronically NZARE Executive Officer at email@example.com by 1 August 2021.
Nominations must include:
- Name, address /phone/email details of nominator(s) and nominee;
- Thesis title;
- An electronic copy of the thesis (NB the selection panel will focus on the Method, Discussion and Conclusion Chapters in coming to a decision);
- A substantial letter of nomination;
- Copies of the examiners’ reports;
- A recent colour photo of nominee;
- Current NZARE membership can be verified by contacting firstname.lastname@example.org
In each year a sub-committee appointed by the NZARE Council will receive and consider the nominations and make a recommendation to the Council regarding conferring the award. The final decision must be ratified by the Council. The Council retains the right to make no award in any one year.
Criteria for Selection
- Nominee is a current NZARE member;
- Research work has been undertaken within a New Zealand tertiary institution. undertaken in New Zealand and has clear implications for New Zealand education;
- Nominee’s work contributes to new knowledge in education, which may be empirical, theoretical and/or methodological;
- Nominee’s work contributes to educational theory, practice, policy, innovation, and / or research methodology;
- Nominee’s work shows evidence of originality, thoroughness and high-quality design and analysis.
The successful applicant will be informed of the award prior to the annual NZARE conference. Unsuccessful applicants will be notified by email and/or letter after the selection process has been completed and the successful candidate has accepted the award.
Brian Sutton Smith Biographical Notes
Brian Sutton-Smith was born in Wellington in 1924. He trained as a teacher, completed a BA and MA, and taught in primary schools prior to taking up a doctoral fellowship with the then University of New Zealand. Professor Sutton-Smith's PhD was titled The historical and psychological significance of the unorganized games of New Zealand primary school children. Following the completion of his PhD Professor, Sutton-Smith travelled to the USA on a Fulbright Travel Grant and Smith Mundt Research Fellowship. After a brief period back in New Zealand teaching in a primary school and working as a sessional assistant in educational psychology at Victoria University, he returned to the USA in 1957 and began an outstanding academic career with a major research focus on children's games, adult games, children's play, children's drama, films and narratives, as well as children's gender issues and sibling position.
Professor Sutton-Smith was the author and editor of some 50 books, the first of which was Our Street (1950, Reed) for New Zealand children, written in their own way of speaking. He was also the author of some 350 scholarly articles. The children's novel Our Street, about his own growing up in the suburb of Island Bay in Wellington, is a metaphor for Professor Sutton Smith's life work.
Professor Sutton-Smith's academic life was 10 years at Bowling Green State University, Ohio; 10 years at Teachers College, Columbia University New York; and 17 years at the University of Pennsylvania. He has been at times known as a Professor of Psychology, a Professor of Education, a Professor of Human Development, and a Professor of Children's Folklore.
Brian Sutton-Smith passed away March 2015.