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School of Education - George Mason University

The PhD in Education with a specialization in multilingual/multicultural education (MME) is individualized, interdisciplinary, and experiential.  Students plan their own programs to meet self-defined goals with the guidance and support of faculty advisors.  MME courses can be applied to primary or secondary specialization areas.

If you have questions about this specialization, please contact the specialization representative, Joan Shin.

About the Specialization

The Multilingual/Multicultural Education (MME) Specialization prepares education researchers and practitioners across local, national, and international contexts to serve as advocates and change agents who support the empowerment of linguistically, culturally, and racially diverse students, families, and communities.

Doctoral students in this program apply cutting-edge theories and bring critical perspectives to educational inequities, embrace language as a resource, and place bilingual and multilingual students at the center of advocacy and social justice. Through rigorous scholarly training, students prepare to engage with interdisciplinary research that informs education policy and practice.

Coursework is designed to appeal to applicants from a wide range of disciplinary backgrounds. We offer students from various specializations (such as education leadership, education policy, STEM education, special education, and teaching and teacher education) opportunities to explore the impact of cultural and linguistic diversity in their own fields.

What Will You Learn?

The specialization features coursework and applied internships that enable you to learn:

  • Theory and research in multilingual/multicultural education across the developmental spectrum
  • Foundational knowledge about multilingual/multicultural teaching and learning at all levels
  • Research methodologies to address a variety of multilingual/multicultural education topics
  • Specialized knowledge in multilingual/multicultural education related to your area of interest

How Will You Learn?

Your advisor will guide your doctoral experience by supplementing coursework with professional experiences, including:

  • Attending and/or presenting at professional conferences
  • Independent study
  • Teaching and/or co-teaching
  • Writing, editing, and reviewing for scholarly journals

Where Can This Specialization Take You?

Graduates of this specialization hold professional positions such as:

  • Academic faculty at post-secondary institutions
  • Consultants with national, professional, government, non-profit, and advocacy organizations
  • Curriculum leaders in major K-12 school districts

Specialization Courses

Each student prepares an individual program of study in consultation with their Program Advisory Committee. The following courses can be taken as part of a student’s primary or secondary specialization coursework:

See additional coursework required as part of the PhD in Education degree.

Our Graduates

Jeremy Aldrich, PhD 2021

  • Dissertation Title: Characteristics and Careers Decisions of Secondary Dual Language Teachers in the United States
  • Dissertation Chair: Dr. Rebecca Fox

Maria Alva, PhD 2021

  • Dissertation Title: Teachers' Literacy Perspectives and Practices with Culturally and Linguistically Diverse Students: From Theory to Classroom
  • Dissertation Chair: Dr. Shelly Wong & Dr. Betsy DeMulder

Aseel Almubaddel, PhD 2020

  • Dissertation Title: Culturally Responsive Teaching in the Eyes of Saudi University Faculty: A Mixed Methods Study
  • Dissertation Chair: Dr. Marjorie Haley

Tiffany Williams, PhD 2020

  • Dissertation Title: Mapping the Institutionalization of Evaluation in the U.S. Federal Government
  • Dissertation Chair: Dr. Marjorie Haley

Tiah McKinney, PhD 2019

  • Dissertation Title: Closing the Gap(s): A School-based Health Center Partnership Improving Health and Educational Outcomes for Low Socioeconomic Status African American Youth in an Urban Public School Academy
  • Dissertation Chair: Dr. Shelley Wong

Faridah Turkistani, PhD 2019

  • Dissertation Title: Toward a Better Understanding of Arabic as a Heritage Language: A Case Study of a High School Arabic Language Teacher
  • Dissertation Chair: Dr. Marjorie Haley

Dalal Al-Kandil, PhD 2018

  • Dissertation Title: Thinking Beyond the Given: Case Study on Saudi Graduate Students' Reflective Learning
  • Dissertation Chair: Dr. Marjorie Haley

Jennifer Santiago, PhD 2018

  • Dissertation Title: Newcomer ELs: How Experiences Shape Self-Identity
  • Dissertation Chair: Dr. Marjorie Haley