Cantrell Honored as a 2022-23 University Research Professor

Susan Chambers Cantrell is a 2022-23 University Research Professor. Mark Cornelison | UK Photo
Susan Chambers Cantrell is a 2022-23 University Research Professor. Mark Cornelison | UK Photo.

UKNow is highlighting the University of Kentucky’s 2022-23 University Research Professors. Established by the Board of Trustees in 1976, the professorship program recognizes excellence across the full spectrum of research, scholarship and creative endeavors at UK. 

LEXINGTON, Ky. (July 15, 2022) — Susan Chambers Cantrell, a professor within the University of Kentucky’s College of Education’s Department of Curriculum and Instruction, is one of the 14 University Research Professors for 2022-2023. The University Research Professorship Awards honor faculty members who have demonstrated excellence that addresses scientific, social, cultural and economic challenges in our region and around the world. 

College leadership develop criteria for excellence within their area of expertise and then nominate faculty who excelled at these criteria. Each University Research Professor receives a one-year award of $10,000. 

“I feel extremely honored to be recognized as a University Research Professor,” said Cantrell. “I am grateful every day for the privilege of working with wonderful research collaborators and to be part of a university that has such a positive impact on Kentucky and the world.”

Cantrell, a former elementary teacher, joined the UK College of Education faculty in 2003 and currently teaches courses in the literacy education, preparing K-8 teachers and literacy specialists for the classroom.

Her research focuses on teachers’ professional learning, self-efficacy development and instructional change — working to create more equitable classrooms for students.

She has been published in more than 60 peer-reviewed articles, book chapters and technical reports including Journal of Literacy Research, Journal of Educational Psychology, Teaching and Teacher Education, Reading Psychology, Journal of Educational Research, Reading and Writing Quarterly, Literacy Research and Instruction, Journal of Adolescent and Adult Literacy and the Reading Teacher.

In addition, to her research Cantrell has co-edited two books on equitable classroom practices, “A Framework for Culturally Responsive Practices: Implementing the Culturally Responsive Instruction Observation Protocol in K-8 Classrooms” and “Culturally Sustaining Literacy Pedagogies: Honoring Students’ Heritages, Languages and Literacies.”

Cantrell has served as principal investigator on grants exceeding $10 million and currently serves as the principal investigator on a U.S. Department of Education, Office of English Language Acquisition National Professional Development grant, Partnerships for Learning, Achievement and Classroom Engagement. This grant initiative is designed to support classroom teachers’ work with multilingual students in diverse classroom environments.

As the state’s flagship, land-grant institution, the University of Kentucky exists to advance the Commonwealth. We do that by preparing the next generation of leaders — placing students at the heart of everything we do — and transforming the lives of Kentuckians through education, research and creative work, service and health care. We pride ourselves on being a catalyst for breakthroughs and a force for healing, a place where ingenuity unfolds. It's all made possible by our people — visionaries, disruptors and pioneers — who make up 200 academic programs, a $476.5 million research and development enterprise and a world-class medical center, all on one campus.   

In 2022, UK was ranked by Forbes as one of the “Best Employers for New Grads” and named a “Diversity Champion” by INSIGHT into Diversity, a testament to our commitment to advance Kentucky and create a community of belonging for everyone. While our mission looks different in many ways than it did in 1865, the vision of service to our Commonwealth and the world remains the same. We are the University for Kentucky.