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Pair of MC English Faculty Make Advanced-Placement History

David Miller and Steve Price
David Miller and Steve Price

Steve Price and David Miller are putting their summer breaks to good use, as the pair of Mississippi College English professors are slated to make advanced-placement history later this summer, with Miller relinquishing his title as the National Chief Reader of the Advanced Placement English Literature and Composition exam to Price.

The chief reader is charged with organizing the reading and scoring of the AP English Literature exam, which is taken by well over a quarter-million high school students each year. 

Price and Miller both have a storied history with the exam, working their way up in the organization since Miller’s induction in 1993 and Price’s seven years later, in 2000. 

Although the College Board had never selected two chief readers from the same institution—to say nothing of the same department— Price’s commitment to student success and student’s voice spoke volumes. As a result, the board ultimately decided that Miller’s colleague was the clear choice to lead teachers and students of literature around the country.

MC Executive Vice President and Provost Keith Elder is unsurprised but thrilled by the duo’s national recognition, saying, “The selection of two MC English faculty members speaks to the national peer recognition of the expertise and exemplary work of Dr. Miller and Dr. Price.”

Price credits the institution that gave him its top job with forming his teaching practices. 

“AP has immensely shaped my philosophy of English literature and composition,” he noted. “Writers and thinkers need a starting point, and we need to know what we have accomplished before fine-tuning what we can improve, and that philosophy is firmly anchored in my AP experiences.” 

These advanced-placement-inspired lessons have served Price well during his tenure at MC. He currently serves as the director of the MC Writing Center and the London semester program. Price was also heralded as the school’s distinguished professor in 2020 and served as the commencement speaker for the December 2020 commencement. 

Although Miller is grateful to begin his retirement from the AP program, he has faith that Price and the army of readers he leaves behind will remember what he said throughout his nearly three decades of service to the AP Literature exam.

“I remind the readers that the next essay that they pick up is ‘someone’s student, someone’s child,’ and while it may be their 100th essay of the day, it was new and fresh to that human being who read the passage, thought those thoughts, and wrote those words.”