2018-2019 Graduate Catalog

Educational Studies: Science Education Ph.D.

The Ph.D. in Educational Studies: Science Education prepares students who are qualified to engage in high-quality original scholarship. Recipients are prepared to assume faculty positions in science at the community college and university levels and take science leadership positions at district and state-level education agencies.


For admission into the program, applicants must have a master's degree in a science or education field. Applicants must present a strong academic record, acceptable GRE scores within the past five years, a writing sample (15-20 pages, exclusive of notes and works cited) that demonstrates appropriate academic writing skills needed for success in a graduate program and three letters of recommendation.

This program requires extensive knowledge from two academic units, including the College of Education and the College of Science & Engineering. Therefore, students may be admitted who lack the prerequisites for some of the courses required in the program. If such is the case, it is necessary for the student to complete the prerequisites in addition to the requirements of the Ph.D. degree.

Degree Requirements

A Ph.D. is a research degree. It is awarded for demonstrating competence in research by successfully defending a dissertation. The emphasis is on developing knowledge and skills in science education that result in the ability to conduct original research in science education. A general program of study is outlined below. Students are required to take a suitable number and variety of graduate courses and research apprenticeships to prepare them for the qualifying examination and for the writing of the dissertation. Depending on the graduate history of the student, the program would require 51-63 hours of coursework after acceptance into the program. The Ph.D. in Educational Studies: Science Education includes the following components.

I. Courses

Field of Education

Students take EDSC 70011 Colloquium in the Profession of Science Education, EDUC 60980 Internship and other courses for the equivalent of 27 hours as approved by the adviser in the College of Education.


Students take the equivalent of 12 hours of research coursework as approved by the adviser in the College of Education.

Science Content

Students take the equivalent of 18 hours of coursework that qualify for science content as approved by the adviser in the College of Education.

II. Apprenticeships

Students are required to join at least one research community during their second year in the program, as approved by the adviser in the College of Education. Students continue to have a research apprenticeship each term thereafter.

III. Comprehensive Qualifying Examination

Students take a qualifying examination to demonstrate their knowledge and ability in science education. Upon the successful completion of the qualifying examination, students are admitted to candidacy.

IV. Dissertation Research

Students propose and conduct original research, write a dissertation and defend the dissertation in a final oral examination. Six hours of dissertation are required.