PhD in Curriculum & Instruction: Science Education


The PhD in Curriculum & Instruction with a specialization in Science Education is structured to support interdisciplinary studies and individualization for researchers and practitioners. Students prepare to be scholars and leaders in the field of science education with advanced course work and research. 

Program Structure

The program requires 90 hours beyond the bachelor’s degree, at least 12 of which must be taken outside the School of Education. The major area of study is Curriculum & Instruction.

Required Coursework

These courses must be taken consecutively during the first year of enrollment:

ELRC 7299 Introduction to Scholarship in Education (fall)
EDCI 7910 Traditions of Inquiry in Education (spring)

Students will develop a plan of study in consultation with and approved by their graduate advisory committee. The following course topics have been offered in the past and are specific to the Science Education area of specialization:

EDCI 5880 Special Topics in Education: Assessment in Math and Science (3)
EDCI 7307 Topics in Curriculum and Instruction: Using Informal Settings to Teach Science and Math (3)
EDCI 7308 Topics in Science Education: Teaching the Nature of Science (3)
EDCI 7308 Topics in Science Education: Technology Integration in Science and Math (3)
EDCI 7921 Analysis of Research in Curriculum & Instruction: Inquiry in Science and Mathematics (3) 
EDCI 7930 Seminar: Curriculum & Instruction: Trends and Issues in Science Education (3)
EDCI 7931 Seminar: Curriculum & Instruction: Project-Based Learning in Science and Mathematics (3)
EDCI 7931 Seminar: Curriculum & Instruction: Sociocultural Perspectives in Science and Mathematics (3)

Dissertation hours (EDCI 9000): a minimum of 12 hours and a maximum of 18 hours are to be taken within the 90-hour program. Additional hours may be taken beyond the 18 but cannot be used to satisfy the research requirement.

Three research courses: ELRC 7006 or equivalent; ELRC 7241 or equivalent; ELRC 7243 or equivalent. Students may use courses from the list below or other courses approved by the major advisor:

Generic methods courses

  • LHRD 7921 Applied Qualitative Research Methods
  • SOCL 7211 Seminar: Methods of Social Investigation
  • Or approved equivalent o

Qualitative methods courses

  • ANTH 4090 Ethnographic Methodology
  • ELRC 7243 Qualitative Methods in Educational Research
  • or approved equivalent

Quantitative methods courses

  • ELRC 7006 Educational Statistics
  • ELRC 7016 Advanced Educational Statistics
  • ELRC 7241 Educational Research Methodology
  • ELRC 7242 Experimental and Quasi-Experimental Designs in Ed. Research
  • PSYC 7117 Methodology and Research Design
  • SOCL 7201 Fundamental Statistics in Sociology
  • SOCL 7203/POLI 7963 Advanced Research Methods in Social Science
  • or approved equivalent

Electives - Up to 12 hours may be taken with the major advisor’s approval.

12 to 18 hours, or as required by the minor field, are to be taken. At least one doctoral committee member must represent the minor field.

This program should be completed within seven years of completing the master's or education specialist requirements. 

Students should meet regularly with their advisors in order to determine what course loads and requirements best suit their individual schedules and professional goals.  



Financial Information



Emily A. Dare, PhD

204A Peabody Hall

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Joshua Ellis, PhD

204C Peabody Hall

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