Degree Requirements

Course Requirements


Beginning in Fall 2013, all doctoral students entering the program will fulfill the same basic course requirements. This ensures that all students have substantive expertise in research methods and a broad grounding in major areas of educational research. To fulfill the basic requirements, all students are required to take 5 research methodology courses, 1 proseminar for new students, and 3 breadth courses. Except for the required proseminar, students can choose courses from menus as described below. In addition, all students are required to take 5 elective courses that will prepare them for doctoral dissertation research. These courses can be chosen from any area within the department, as well as from courses in other departments. The student’s advisor must approve the choice of electives.

Milestone Requirements


Research Apprenticeship: During the first year, each student is required to participate in a research apprenticeship under the guidance of his or her faculty advisor or another qualified faculty member. The purpose of the apprenticeship is to acquaint students with the hands-on conduct of research by having them participate in the research activities of a faculty mentor.

Independent Research Project: The Independent Research Project should involve a topic of interest to the student and the student should assume major responsibility for all aspects of the project from research review through data collection and analysis. Completion of the project should result in a paper that is appropriate for submission for publication. There is an oral defense of the project.

Qualifying Exam: The Qualifying Exam has both a written component and an oral component. The student chooses substantive topics and develops a reading list for each of these topics that is approved by the doctoral committee. The written component of the exam can consist of either a literature review based upon the reading lists or essays written in response to questions posed by the doctoral committee. The oral component takes place after the written exam has been reviewed by the committee.

Dissertation Proposal: The dissertation proposal is detailed proposal for the dissertation research, including a description of the problem or issue to be addressed, a review of the pertinent literature, and a description of the procedures by which the study will be conducted. There is an oral defense of the proposal with the doctoral committee.

Dissertation Defense: A dissertation defense involves a formal oral presentation of the dissertation project by the student and a series of questions by the doctoral committee. The dissertation is considered complete once it has been approved by the faculty and filed with the Graduate Division.

Choose one course from 3 of the 4 breadth menus below

Language, Culture and Society

ED 202 Bilingual Language Development 4.0
ED 205 Anthropological Studies in Education 4.0
ED 210E Foundations of Sociocultural Theory 4.0
ED 210F Contemporary Sociocultural Theory 4.0
ED 270H Language, Culture, and Learning 4.0
ED 272 Cultural Studies in Education 4.0

Learning and Teaching

ED 210A Advances in the Learning Sciences and Education 4.0
ED 219B Research on Classroom Teaching 4.0
ED 256 Technology and Learning Contexts 4.0
Ed 282 Research Along the Learning to Teach Continuum: Teacher Education, Induction, and Professional Development 4.0
ED XXX General Course on Curriculum (New course to be developed) 4.0

Policy, Organization, and Leadership

ED 240A Educational Policy 4.0
ED 242A Organizational Theories 4.0


ED 211B Development: Infancy and Early Childhood 4.0
ED 211C Development: Middle Childhood to Adolescence 4.0
ED 211G Theories in Human Development 4.0
ED 210B Children’s Thinking 4.0
ED 222A Introduction to Exceptional Children 4.0
ED 228E Families and Disabilities 4.0