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Method of Making particles including a YAG core and a coating of sintering aid deposited thereon. The particles and agglomerates thereof maybe formed as a powder. The coated YAG-containing particles are well-suited to production of polycrystalline YAG-containing ceramics. The coated YAG-containing particles may be fabricated using a novel fabrication method which avoids the need for formation of a homogeneous powder mixture of YAG and sintering aid. The mixture may be sprayed into a drying column and dried to produce coated particles. Alternatively, the YAG particles and sintering aid or sintering aid precursor solution may be separately introduced to the drying column and dried to form coated YAG-containing particles.