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UT Tyler education professor earns national award

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TYLER (KYTX) - Dr. Kouider Mokhtari has received the 2013 Outstanding Book Award from the American Association of Colleges for Teacher Education, Dr. Ross Sherman, The University of Texas at Tyler College of Education and Psychology interim dean, announced.

Mokhtari serves as the Anderson-Vukelja-Wright Endowed professor of education within the UT Tyler School of Education. He, along with co-editors Drs. Joyce Nutta and Carine Strebel, have been recognized for their work on the 2012 book, "Preparing Every Teacher to Reach English Learners: A Practical Guide for Teacher Educators."

The award recognizes exemplary books that make a significant contribution to the knowledge base of educator preparation or of teaching and learning with implications for educator preparation. He and his colleagues were recognized at the AACTE's 65th Annual Meeting in Orlando, Fla.

"As educators we are charged with meeting needs of our English learners. But it is not enough to accept this challenge. We need the tools to transform intention into reality," said Sherman. "Dr. Mokhtari and his colleagues have designed a model for preparing every teacher to reach English learners. We at The University of Texas at Tyler are proud that AACTE has recognized the important contribution of Dr. Mokhtari and his colleagues to promoting educational opportunity for all students."

The book, published by Harvard Education Press, reinforces the profession's sense of urgency to prepare teachers who have the knowledge, commitments and practices to meet the needs of English language learners in their classroom. The volume provides a useful framework and programmatic model to guide conversations among teacher educators about how to redesign and reimagine courses and clinical experiences.

Mokhtari currently serves as co-chair of the Literacy & English Learners Committee of the International Reading Association, whose work is focused on enhancing the education of English learners.

He also serves as co-editor of the journal, "Tapestry," which is dedicated to the advancement of research and instruction for English language learners.

Mokhtari holds a Ph.D. in applied linguistics, cognitive psychology and curriculum and instruction with a specialization in reading from Ohio University.

His research focuses on the acquisition of language and literacy by first and second language learners, with particular emphasis on children, adolescents and adults who can read but have difficulties understanding what they read.

The AACTE is a national alliance of educator preparation programs dedicated to the highest quality professional development of teachers and school leaders in order to enhance PK-12 student learning. The 800 institutions holding AACTE membership represent public and private colleges and universities in every state, the District of Columbia, the Virgin Islands, Puerto Rico and Guam. AACTE's reach and influence fuel its mission of serving learners by providing all school personnel with superior training and continuing education.

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