The Inquirer yesterday was named the third-place winner in the national Philip Meyer Awards for its investigation of the Camden test-score cheating scandal.

The paper was honored for the statistical analysis that allowed it to uncover the test-score cheating scandal in the Camden school district. The analysis showed that two Camden schools had unusually high test scores.

The award names reporters Melanie Burney, Frank Kummer and Dwight Ott.

The award, announced by Investigative Reporters and Editors, notes that the investigation "ultimately led to the resignation of the district superintendent, an investigation, and strict monitoring by the state department of education."

The Meyer Awards recognize the best uses of social science methods in journalism. The awards will be presented March 9 in Cleveland.

First place went to the Wall Street Journal for a series that exposed the secret and widespread practice of backdating stock options grants; second place to Gannett News Service for a project that rated hospitals on the care of heart patients.

The awards are administered by the National Institute for Computer-Assisted Reporting (a joint program of Investigative Reporters and Editors and the Missouri School of Journalism), and the Knight Chair in Journalism at the Walter Cronkite School of Journalism and Mass Communication at Arizona State University.

The awards are in honor of Philip Meyer, the Knight Chair in Journalism at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill and author of Precision Journalism, which encourages the use of social science methods in reporting.