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AL Seal of Biliteracy_Governor Kay IveyUAB Professors Lead Charge of Seal of Biliteracy for Alabama
UAB News
September 22, 2022
Efforts of two UAB faculty and their teams led to the state of Alabama's acquiring a Seal of Biliteracy, a national program that acknowledges high school students who have achieved a high level of proficiency in English and at least one other language. Krista Chambless, Ph.D., professor in the College of Arts and Sciences Department of World Languages and Literatures, introduced the need for a seal in the state of Alabama in 2015 in collaboration with Susan Spezzini, Ph.D., professor in the School of Education and Human Sciences's Department of Curriculum and Instruction. Chambless led efforts statewide among world language teachers and their school systems, while Spezzini supported these efforts among English language educators statewide and with officials at the Alabama Commission on Higher Education.

Student at whiteboard

Ask Yourself These 5 Questions Before Choosing an ESL Master's Program
UAB Reporter
September 24, 2021
There are easier ways to earn a graduate degree in English as a Second Language (ESL) than to enroll at UAB. Just ask Susan Spezzini, Ph.D., who directs the university's innovative ESL teacher preparation program. Spezzini has worked with hundreds of students who want to help others learn English, in their own classrooms or the classrooms where they hope to teach one day. When the call, stop by her office or send an email, Spezzini uses several questions to help them find their way.

Chelsea Walker Griner Gates Millennium Scholar

Gates Millenium Scholarship Recipient to Graduate from UAB
UAB News
December 9, 2020
A Gates Millennium Scholarship has enabled Chelsea Walker-Griner to earn a bachelor's degree, a master's degree in teaching English to speakers of other languages, and an Ed.S. in TESOL from UAB. "The UAB School of Education and Human Sciences has something special to offer to students," Chelsea said. "The experience I had at UAB reinforced the Gates Millennium Scholarship goal of promoting academic excellence and providing opportunities for minority students."

Spezzini2020 square

Spezzini Named a 2020-2021 Fulbright Scholar
UAB News
September 14, 2020
Dr. Susan Spezzini, Professor and Program Director of English as a Second Language in the School of Education and Human Sciences, has received a Fulbright U.S. Scholar Program award. Through the award, she will live in Paraguay from February to July 2021 for her project, "Enhancing the Efficacy of English Language Educators in Paraguay." During her time abroad, she will teach and conduct research at the National University of AsunciĆ³n and the Paraguayan American Cultural Center as part of a project to enhance the efficacy of English language educators in the country.

Josie Prado squareFaculty Honored for Excellence in Teaching 
UAB Reporter
July 27, 2018
Dr. Josephine Prado, Assistant Professor of English-learner education in UAB's ESL program, has selected as one of twelve UAB faculty to receive the President's Award for Excelllence in Teaching, which honors those who have demonstrated exceptional accomplishments in teaching. The 2018 honorees were recognized during the annual Faculty Convocation, held on October 22 in the Doubletree Hotel.

Meghan GillilandStudents Learn How to Teach English Everywhere
UAB Magazine
March 2018
By Gail Allyn Short; photo by Steve Wood
UAB's ESL program has been teaching research-proven methodologies for instruction ELLs for nearly two decades, allowing ESL teachers to reach their full potential. UAB's graduate program for teaching ESL has had a statewide and international impact, with UAB ESL students and alumni currently teaching in nearly a third of Alabama's school systems and around the world.

community english classesCommunity English Classes a Decades-long Tradition in Birmingham 
UAB Reporter
August 21, 2017
For more than twenty years, UAB has offered free English conversation classes to the Birmingham community, led by Dr. Josie Prado. Taught by a combination of community volunteers and graduate students learning to teach English as a second language (ESL), the classes are a trifecta of many core UAB values: leveraging knowledge while providing training to students and performing a service for the community.

2017 02 Kelly Hill Susan Spezzini squareUAB English as a Second Language Program Receives $5 Million to Improve Language Learning in Alabama 
UAB News
February 1, 2017
Two grants from the U.S. Department of Education's Office of English Language Acquisition will help improve instruction for English language learners in three east Alabama school systems and dual language learning for preschoolers across the state. The five-year grants, totaling $5 million, will fund two projects run by the University of Alabama at Birmingham School of Education and Human Sciences. The projects will provide professional development to current educators, assist future teachers in preparing to teach the English language learners, and provide outreach activities for parents, families and members of the community.

Sarah HicksUAB Alumna One of 35 Educators Selected as Grosvenor Teacher Fellow 
UAB News
October 4, 2016
Sarah Hicks, who received a Master's degree in English as a Second Language from the UAB School of Education and Human Sciences in 2013, is one of 35 educators from the United States and Canada to be selected for the 10th annual class of National Geographic Grosvenor Teacher Fellows.

UAB to Celebrate Commencement May 12 
UAB News
May 4, 2012
Frankie Perez, first MAEd/ESL graduate to give the post-baccalaureate speech.
Video of Frankie's speech

Profile on Students: Jeanne D'Arc Boohaker
Education Outlook: Volume 9, Number 2, page 10
Winter 2008

Oh, What a Feeling - Toyota Funds Family Literacy Project
Education Outlook: Volume 8, Number 2, page 8
Fall 2006

UAB School of Education and Human Sciences - DeKalb County
Education Outlook: Volume 7, Number 1, pages 2-3
Winter 2005

Overcoming Obstacles: Building a Strong Foundation
Education Outlook: Volume 6, Number 2, page 3
Spring 2004

Project EQUAL: Local Schools Target Cross-Cultural Disparity
Education Outlook: Volume 6, Number 2, page 6
Fall 2003

Press Releases

UAB Partners with Shelby, Homewood Schools for ESL Education Research
The University of Alabama at Birmingham (UAB) School of Education and Human Sciences has won two new 5-year federal grants totaling more than $2.5 million for English as a Second Language training for teachers in the Shelby County and Homewood City Schools.
August 8, 2007

Other News

Local Startup Partners with Brasfield & Gorrie to Save Lives
UAB ESL graduate Oscar Garcia has created an app called Need2Say which he hopes will help construction workers whose first language is not English to stay safer on the jobsite.
Birmingham Business Alliance
November 18, 2020

Hispanic Alabama - Migrant Preschool

Public educators are frontline witnesses to America's shifting patterns of migration. 
Alabama Public Radio by Amanda Dewald
October 2, 2007

Hispanic Alabama - Indigenous Languages
Hispanic immigrants to Alabama use many different languages and dialects, and this creates a communication barrier between parents and educators. 
Alabama Public Radio by Amanda Dewald
October 2, 2007

Perez Balances Roles as Teacher, Father
Shelby County Reporter by Sandra Thames
March 23, 2015

Afternoon Literacy Program Seeks to Connect Teachers, ESL Parents
Candace Hatcher, 2010 UAB ESL graduate and teacher at University Place Elementary School recently held a literacy afternoon for parents and students. 
The Huntsville Times by Pat Ammons

Gwin Elementary School's ESL Program Helps Hoover Students, Families Break through Barriers
At Gwin Elementary School in Hoover, Alabama, ESL students, their parents, and pre-school age siblings are offered various programs to help them succeed. 
Birmingham News by Tiffany Ray 
February 8, 2010