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Amber Mabus earns doctoral degree from Murray State University

Holmes Community College English and Foreign Language Division Chair Amber Mabus recently earned her Doctor of Arts (D.A.) in English Pedagogy with an emphasis in writing pedagogy from Murray State University in Kentucky. Dr. Mabus’s capstone project was titled “Teaching Community College Composition Students How to Use AI Technology Ethically Through the Research Process.”

“After completing my research on how Generative AI (GenAI) programs affect writing courses, I designed a curriculum unit designed to teach students the basics of how Generative AI works, the benefits and downfalls of using the technology, and how to use such tools ethically in their coursework,” Mabus explained. ” I implemented the unit in my Spring 2024 English Composition II courses, and I analyzed data from student surveys, reflections, and assignment submissions to determine students’ feelings toward the technology and whether they had learned how to use GenAI in an ethical manner. Overall, the curriculum unit was a success, but I was surprised to learn that students had concerns about Generative AI similar to those of my colleagues and the general public.”

The Murray State University Doctor of Arts in English Pedagogy program is unique because it is designed for current teachers in the field of English at both secondary and postsecondary levels. The program has a core of foundation courses tied to teachers’ work in the classroom and encourages students to use their professional environments as sites of reflection and imaginative inquiry. The Doctor of Arts (D.A.) degree is a terminal degree that requires extensive research and is recognized by accrediting agencies and governmental bodies like the National Science Foundation. However, the D.A. degree is more focused on pedagogy than the Ph.D. and is more disciplinarily centered than the Ed.D.

Dr. Mabus holds M.Ed. and B.S.E. degrees in English Education from Delta State University and an associate degree from Holmes. Before accepting a full-time position at Holmes, she taught English at Grenada High School for six years. Dr. Mabus just completed her ninth year as an English Instructor and seventh year as chair of the English and Foreign Language Division at Holmes.

An active member of the community, Dr. Mabus is a member of Providence Baptist Church in Gore Springs, where she is the worship leader and young women’s Sunday School teacher. She is active in the Kirk Academy PTA, where she served as president during the 2023-2024 school year, and she is a provisional member of Junior Auxiliary of Grenada. In 2017, Dr. Mabus received the Ovid Vickers Award for Excellence in the Teaching of English, awarded by the Two-Year College English Association of Mississippi. During her time at Murray State, she also accepted membership into Omicron Delta Kappa and Phi Kappa Phi honor societies.

Dr. Mabus and her husband, Jack, have one daughter, Isla, who just finished kindergarten. She enjoys reading, traveling, exercising and binge-watching TV in her spare time.

“The Murray State University DA program allowed me to learn techniques I could apply in my classes the next day,” Dr. Mabus said. “I learned different perspectives on teaching English from my cohort members, who are educators from all over the world. I am incredibly thankful for this program, my cohort and my family, who supported me throughout this process. I could not have finished the program without their help!”

Holmes Community College does not discriminate on the basis of race, color, religion,
national origin, sex, age, disability or genetic information in its educational programs and activities,
employment practices, or admissions processes. The following administrators have been designated to handle
inquiries regarding the non-discrimination policies of Holmes Community College:

Inquiries regarding compliance with Title VI, ADEA, and Title IX are coordinated by the Vice President for
Compliance and Institutional Research, Henry B. McClellan Administration Building, Post Office Box 369,
Goodman, MS 39079, Phone: 662-472-9429,

Inquiries regarding compliance with Section 504 and ADA are coordinated by the Disability Student Services
Coordinator, M.R. Thorne Vocational-Technical Building, Room 110, Post Office Box 369, Goodman, MS 39079,
Phone: 662-472-9088,
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