I work with future secondary or all-level classroom teachers, including those seeking teacher certification while majoring in physics, mathematics, chemistry, biological sciences, kinesiology, special education, English, history, music, studio art and theatre!

Julie Mills, Ph.D.
Assistant Professor and Secondary Center Coordinator

  • Alum
  • Faculty
Curriculum and Instruction
Contact Julie
Sowers Education South 222
Related Department
Curriculum and Instruction

Dr. Julie Mills grew up in rural areas across the state. As a high school senior in Hopkins County, she aspired to attend Texas A&M University-Commerce because it was close to home and her father worked at the university. Though she chose A&M-Commerce for its location, she quickly realized the university was also an excellent fit for her. She earned her bachelor's and master's degrees at A&M-Commerce.

Her love for the university also inspired a desire to work at A&M-Commerce. She fulfilled that dream and again found A&M-Commerce a perfect fit for her career. She felt at home interacting with faculty and staff from her undergraduate days and saw many of her former K-12 students teaching and taking classes at the university.

Mills is passionate about creating safe and productive learning environments. She is determined to prepare teachers who create positive learning environments for all students. She believes it's important that teachers create safe spaces that are physically, emotionally, socially and mentally conducive to learning.

A Conversation with Dr. Mills

What would you tell a student who is thinking about attending A&M-Commerce?

A&M-Commerce is a school with lots of opportunities! It's a small enough university and town that you run into people you know when you are in the cafeteria or even shopping off-campus. However, it is still large enough to have a variety of organizations, activities and majors to choose from. And, we have a Starbucks on campus!

What draws you to your discipline?

I am a former 6-12th grade teacher. I loved teaching in Northeast Texas but also loved mentoring new teachers and leading professional development. Those interests led me to work on my doctorate in curriculum and instruction.

What has been your favorite course to teach?

This is a tough question! I really enjoy all my classes and especially like teaching new classes because I love designing curricula and aligning assessments and activities.

Tell us about a project you are currently working on or recently completed.

I just submitted a manuscript for a follow-up study on how parents supported mathematics learning during the pandemic. In this study, we reached out to parents one year after the pandemic began and asked them questions about their families' successes and challenges in learning mathematics at home. Many parents were concerned their children had fallen behind in mathematics. Some parents were happy to be back to face-to-face instruction while others embraced the option of online learning. Thankful for some changes due to the pandemic, some parents expressed being more familiar with what their children were learning due to technology integration.

Educational Background

  • Ph.D., Curriculum and Instruction, University of North Texas, 2015
  • M.Ed., Secondary Education, Texas A&M University-Commerce, 2008
  • B.S., Sociology, Texas A&M University-Commerce, 2004

Standard Texas Educator Certificate

  • Mathematics (4-8)
  • Family and Consumer Sciences (6-12)

Awards and Honors

Research Interests

  • Preparation of preservice teachers
  • Mathematics learning in the home
  • Mathematics education

Professional Organizations

Selected Publications

  • Williams Mills, J., Quast, J., & Fields, M. (2021). COVID-19 virtual dilemma: Parents' perspectives on math learning at home. In P. Keough (Ed.), Educational recovery for PK- 12 education during and after a pandemic (25-44). IGI Global.
  • Quast, J. & Williams Mills, J. (2020). Preservice teachers' expectations of faculty. SRATE Journal, 29 (2).
  • Williams, J., Tunks, J., Gonzalez-Carriedo, R., Faulkenberry, E., & Middlemiss, W. (2020). Supporting mathematics understanding through funds of knowledge. Urban Education, 55 (3), 476-502.
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