Teaching and Learning, Ph.D.

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Specialization in Language and Literacy Learning in Multilingual Settings (LLLMS)

This specialization is designed for students with a strong interest in research and its application to understanding language and literacy-related phenomena that intersect with issues of linguistic and cultural diversity in education. The LLLMS faculty conduct research on a variety of topics including bilingual education, family and community literacy practices, assessment, and digital literacies with a focus on culturally and linguistically diverse student populations.


The Ph.D. requires 60 semester hours of study beyond the undergraduate degree plus 12 credits of dissertation research. Up to 30 credits of study from a master’s degree may be applied to the requirements if approved by the student’s Supervisory Committee.

What our current students are saying

“The LLLMS program has allowed me to expand my research on language development, multimodality, digital literacies, and the use of technology to assist learning. The faculty are knowledgeable and supportive, frequently encouraging us to further our research, share it with peers in both domestic and international conferences, and publish our findings. These experiences have been crucial in my development as an educator and research scholar.”

--Cristiane Rocha Vicentini, fourth-year doctoral candidate, São Paulo, Brazil

“As a current student, the multiculturalism and multilingualism that permeates the Department of Teaching and Learning has made my days as a doctoral student a highly enriching experience. The different perspectives of peers, the critical insights of faculty, and the constant support from every single member of TAL allowed me to build a strong professional figure, conscious of my position in the world, and able to bring my own personality and lived experiences in my work in a constructive way. Spreading the seed of change is the mission of SEHD and will, from now on, be my own too.”

Michela Galante, second-year doctoral student

Hometown: Venice, Italy


Mary Avalos

Research Associate Professor

305 284 6467

Max Orovitz 305

Matthew Deroo

Assistant Professor

305 284 5217

Merrick 324-D

Scott Grapin

Assistant Professor

305 284 2140

Merrick 319

Jason Mizell

Asst. Professor

305 284 4842

Merrick 324-C

Core LLLMS Courses

TAL 731: Language Policy and Planning
The course focuses on the areas that have been of particular interest to sociolinguists and language planners, namely, status planning, corpus planning, prestige planning, language-in-education planning, the language rights of linguistic minorities, and the more recent movements from macro issues on language policy and planning (LPP) to micro issues involved in indexing linguistic, ethnic and racial identities. In addition, the course will address matters of migration, imperialism, state formation, and political conflicts due to LPP in the United States as well as in countries in Latin America, the Caribbean, Africa, Asia, and Europe.

TAL 733: Languaging and Literacies
This course will provide an introduction to theories and research on languaging and language development. The course is grounded in contemporary understandings of language as a set of meaning-making practices that learners develop across the lifespan as they engage with diverse contexts and communities of language use. Key areas of focus include theoretical perspectives on languaging and language development; language used for academic purposes; language assessment; bilingual/multilingual education; and multimodal communication. Within each area, students will read both foundational and contemporary work as well as explore methodological approaches for conducting research. Students will also grapple with enduring tensions and ongoing debates in the literature, particularly as they relate to teaching and learning in linguistically diverse K-12 contexts.

TAL 734: Theory and Research in Literacies and Literacy Development
This doctoral-level seminar explores a broad array of topics influencing the study and teaching of literacy, including the history of literacy/ies research; major theories and models of literacy development; issues in literacy development (including individual differences); motivation and special populations; evidence-based literacy instruction; connections between reading, writing, and learning; and reading and writing online and multimodal texts. Readings for this course include foundational papers, as well as recent studies, policy analyses, and reviews.

TAL 735: Special Topics in Language and Literacies: Current Issues
This seminar addresses current issues in language and literacies from theoretical, policy, practice, and research perspectives. Topics may include current issues related to languaging, literacy learning in and out of school, assessment, equity, and access for all learners. Additionally, research methods for investigating languaging and literacies, such as design-based, discourse, applied linguistics, multimodality, classroom observation, and community-based/engaged literacy scholarship.

Program Contacts

Admission Inquiries (LLLMS)

Matthew Deroo
Assistant Professor
Merrick 324D

Application Process Questions

Graduate Studies Office