Alabama A&M’s School of Education Awarded First Ph.D. Program

Alabama A&M’s School of Education Awarded First Ph.D. Program


Alabama A&M University’s School of Education has been awarded its first Ph.D. degree program.
“The new Ph.D. program will offer its candidates the area’s only program in what we refer to as ‘pure’ reading,” says Dr. Mary W. Spor, an AAMU professor and reading specialist.

While AAMU has harbored the concept for a Ph.D. degree program in reading for some time, the notion did not receive its impetus until a year and a half ago. Led by Dr. John Vickers Jr., dean of the School of Education, and Spor, the university recently presented the program proposal to the Alabama Commission on Higher Education.

“The phones are already ringing,” says longtime educator and administrator Dr. Joe Boyer, adding that “the market is rich for the program.”

“A Ph.D. degree program in pure reading is unique in this region,” says Boyer, who directs the university’s NCATE and State Education Programs.

“The subject of reading appears to be among the more critical needs of North Alabama,” he says. “We are proud to offer a pure reading program that will not be a concentration of a curriculum and instruction or general education program.”

The awarding of the new Ph.D. degree program in reading comes as AAMU is busy preparing for reaffirmation of its accreditation by the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools (SACS), as well as the National Council for Accreditation of Teacher Education (NCATE). An NCATE team of six to eight individuals will visit campus Oct. 4-8.

AAMU expects to enroll the first class in the new doctoral program in January 2004.

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