Headshot of Joseph Morgan

Joseph Morgan, Ph.D.

Chair and Interim Director, CREW Disability Center

Early Childhood, Multilingual, and Special Education
CEB 143
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Dr. Joseph John Morgan is an Associate Professor of Special Education and Graduate Coordinator in the Department of Early Childhood, Multilingual, and Special Education. He has been at the University of Nevada, Las Vegas since 2009. His research focuses on three main areas: (1) supporting the social-emotional development and subsequent post-secondary outcomes of culturally and linguistically diverse students with emotional and behavioral disorders (EBD), (2) developing tiered intervention systems to support the needs of culturally and linguistically diverse students attending high-needs schools, and (3) teacher education, both for traditional and alternative pathways licensure programs, and ongoing professional development across the career continuum for in-service special education teachers.

He is engaged in applied research within public school environments and works actively in the preparation of doctoral students to focus on implementation science and the practical application of the scholarship they are producing. Dr. Morgan has currently published over 25 peer-reviewed journal articles, book chapters, and conference proceedings focused on the findings of his scholarship. In addition, he has been the principal investigator or co-principal investigator of over $5 million in externally funded grants, including both research and personnel preparation projects. Most recently, he was awarded a $2.5 million grant to fund ReInvent Schools Las Vegas – Community Schools Initiative, a project designed to implement a community schools model on three elementary school campuses within the Las Vegas Valley. He also received a $300,000 award to study the implementation of site-based professional development to support inclusive practices in partnership with the Nevada Partnership for Inclusive Education (NVPIE).

Dr. Morgan is actively engaged in teaching at the university level. His courses focus on characteristics and strategies for students with EBD, data-based decision making and student growth models, and implementation of culturally sustaining pedagogies in public school environments. He actively works with doctoral students and has chaired the dissertation committees of 10 students who successfully defended their dissertations and are serving as leaders in the field of special education across the country. He advises master’s students in the alternative pathways to licensure program and is actively engaged in curriculum design in special education teacher licensure programs at UNLV.

Dr. Morgan is involved in a variety of service activities at both the national and local levels. He serves as a member of the editorial review boards for Intervention in School and Clinic, the Journal of Special Education Technology, and TEACHING Exceptional Children. He was recently elected the Vice President of the Council for Learning Disabilities (CLD), an international organization focused on advocacy, research, policy, and teacher education for students with learning disabilities. In this capacity, he will serve a four-year term in the presidential chain of CLD, including president elect, president, and past president. At the university level, Dr. Morgan has served as the special education program coordinator since 2013 and as the graduate coordinator of programs in EMS since 2016.

He was elected to the position of Faculty Chair for the UNLV College of Education, coordinating faculty governance structures in the College. Locally, he was appointed the Chair of the Board for Democracy Prep at Agassi Campus, a local public charter school focused on college preparation, and as the Chair of the Board of NVPIE, an organization focused on supporting teachers in the implementation of inclusive school practices.

Research Expertise

Learning disabilities, emotional and behavioral disorders, technology integration in special education, provision of access to the general education environment for culturally and linguistically diverse students with disabilities