School of Education
Ph.D. Program Requirements
Students generally complete the degree in 4-5 years of full-time study. A minimum of 55 credit hours is required to complete the Ph.D. program. Most students will take far more than this minimum in order to complete apprenticeship and specialization requirements or maintain full time status. Program requirements include:
1. Core Content Courses: Doctoral Core coursework includes two proseminars (EDUC 805, EDUC 806) that students take in the first two semesters of their program.
2. Research Methods Core Courses: Students take two core research methods courses (EDUC 850 and 856) while taking their core content courses. They also choose primarily a qualitative (EDUC 852, 858, 859) or quantitative (EDUC 812, 865, 874) set of three courses to fulfill the methodology core requirement. In some cases, and with the approval of their advisor, students may fulfill the methodology core by choosing courses from both tracks.
3. Specialization Area Courses: All students are accepted into one of 6 specialization areas. These areas vary in how specialized knowledge and skills are acquired, but each requires between two and four specialization courses. All students will take at least two additional specialization core courses from one or more areas outside of their primary area. Students must choose courses carefully to ensure that this requirement is met, recognizing that most courses are offered every other year (some may be offered less frequently depending on enrollments). The six specializations are:
- Evaluation, Measurement and Statistics
- Learning Sciences
- Literacy Development and Learning Problems
- Mathematics Education
- School Psychology
- Sociocultural and Community-Based Approaches
4. Colloquium Series: Research colloquia expose students to some of the foremost thinkers and researchers in the field of education. Guest scholars are invited to share their research findings with doctoral students and faculty in a setting that encourages collegiality and familiarizes students with a number of scholarly presentation styles and content areas. A one-credit course (EDUC 840) is offered each semester in conjunction with the colloquium series and students must complete a minimum of 4 credits of colloquium.
5. First Year Assessment: All students in the program are required to successfully pass the First Year Assessment, which serves as the qualifying exam for the program. This assessment occurs during finals week of the spring semester. Students critique a research article given to them one week in advance of the exam. Students have three hours to write their critique in an exam setting.
6. Scholarly Apprenticeship Requirements: Scholarly Apprenticeship Requirements consist of the following activities and requirements: participation in an annual College of Education and Human Development Research Forum; submission of a publication to a peer-reviewed journal; presentation at a national conference in the student’s area of expertise; and supervised university teaching experience.
7. Individual Program Plan: By the beginning of the third semester of enrollment, students will write an Individual Program Plan (IPP) that must be approved by the student’s advisor. The IPP will include a listing of the courses the student plans to take to fulfill research methods core and specialization area requirements, and it will outline a timeline of research the student intends to undertake. (Current students can find the Individual Program Plan form on Graduate Resources and Forms.)
8. Residency Requirement: University policy requires Ph.D. students to complete one year in residence (one continuous academic year—9 credit hours per semester). Students in this cohort-based program are encouraged to complete the residency requirement during their first year in the program.
9. Dissertation Proposal: A written proposal that is defended before one’s advisory committee.
10. Dissertation and Defense: An original work of scholarship, meeting School, University and professional requirements, plus an oral defense of the work. Nine hours of dissertation credit (EDUC 969) are required of all Ph.D. students.