Clark-Woodson Research Fellowship

About The Clark-Woodson Research Fellowship

The Clark-Woodson Research Fellowship is named after two pioneering Black educators – Septima Clark and Carter G. Woodson. Both educators were committed to using education as the instrument for the liberation of Black people.

Clark-Woodson Fellows will have the opportunity to support BTC’s research agenda in service of fostering Black liberatory education for Black students, while simultaneously advancing their own scholarship. Fellows will be offered a one year award of $60,000 and an additional $5,000 research budget. BTC seeks to advance our understanding of Black liberatory education by fostering research that will help us refine our understanding of the Black liberatory educational experience in service of Black children.

Fellows will work closely with a dynamic group of people with diverse backgrounds as researchers and practitioners on the BTC Program and Innovation and the Research and Policy teams. In the pilot year (2022-2023) of this initiative, Clark-Woodson Fellows will serve as an extension of the BTC family assisting with the design and development of programs and research. Fellows can participate in this fellowship while maintaining a full-time role elsewhere.


Septima Poinsette Clark was a teacher and civil rights activist who, after teaching in South Carolina’s Black public schools, developed a citizen education program linking literacy to political empowerment through the Highlander Folk School. She lost her public school teaching job because of her refusal to relinquish membership in the NAACP and end her court battles for teacher pay equity for Black teachers and desegregation. Clark was a key figure in the Southern Christian Leadership Conference’s (SCLC) as they used her citizen education model in their work to advance voting rights.

An advocate for intellectualism and self-determination, Septima Clark said, “We need to be taught to study rather than believe, to inquire rather than to affirm.”

Carter G. Woodson

Carter G. Woodson was an educator and scholar committed to documenting and celebrating the history of Black people and Black culture. Woodson’s seminal work, The Mis-Education of the Negro, focused on Black self-deterimination and intellectual self-empowerment. This fellowship is rooted in their enduring legacies of fierce commitment to Black education and scholarship for and about Black children.

Woodson said “…every man has two educators: ‘that which is given to him, and the other that which he gives himself. Of the two kinds the latter is by far the more desirable. Indeed all that is most worthy in man he must work out and conquer for himself. It is that which constitutes our real and best nourishment. What we are merely taught seldom nourishes the mind like that which we teach ourselves.”

Fellowship Eligibility

Applicants should have completed doctoral work by the start of the fellowship (July 1, 2022) and are expected to submit an initial interest form explaining your intent to apply for the fellowship and how this fellowship opportunity provided by Black Teacher Collaborative is an interesting opportunity for you and connects to your research interests.

  • Demonstrated research interest in Black Child Education, Black Liberatory Pedagogy, or Black Child Development
    • K-12 content expertise and prior teaching experience a plus
  • Flexibility to devote at least ten (10) hours a week to the Fellowship over the course of the Fellowship Period (Start: July 1, 2022 to End: June 30, 2023)

Application Timeline:

  • March 15th – Interest Form Submissions Due
  • April 15th – Application Due
  • May 18th – Announcement of Fellows (2)
  • July 1st – June 30th – Fellowship Period

*Application Requirements:

  • Your CV
  • Cover letter detailing research interests
  • One (1) writing sample (e.g., a dissertation chapter or published article)
  • Three (3) letters of reference from those acquainted with your work
  • 2-3 research questions you might pursue in this fellowship

Fellow Responsibilities

  • Act as principal investigator or co-investigator on a research project to produce two (2) case studies on Black liberatory schools
  • Write and prepare a publication-ready systematic literature review (SLR) on one of the following topics:
    • the needs of Black liberatory pedagogy in the Black education experience
    • the literacy experiences and outcomes of Black children in X grade band
    • the mathematics experiences and outcomes of Black children in Y grade band
  • Contribute at least one co-authored education-focused publication in collaboration with BTC (building on case studies & SLRs)
  • Collaborate with the Program and Innovation (P&I) and Research and Policy (RaP) teams, to define a strategy to sustain and scale the Clark-Woodson Research Fellowship
  • Collaborate with the P&I team to apply research and literature review outcomes to developing ideas for programming
  • Plan and facilitate at least one (1) classroom strategy workshop designed for classroom K-12 teachers of Humanities or STEM courses
  • Share insights and contribute to the development of solutions on the P&I team
  • Advance BTCs research agenda by actively collaborating with members of the RaP team

Image Credits: Bob Fitch photography archive, © Stanford University Libraries, Library of Congress

Goto Top