Doctor of Philosophy in educational psychology

This program is targeted to those who are oriented toward careers in college/university teaching, research, instructional practices and data management (e.g., in school systems, corporations, etc.). The program subscribes to the scientist-practitioner model and has a strong emphasis on theory, research and evidence-based practices. The study of educational psychology includes in-depth coverage of psychology and education, especially human development, motivation, learning processes and human diversity. Research design, methodology and analyses are also critical parts of this program. With a strong foundation in the theoretical and empirical research literature in this combination of areas, and skills in conducting research and evaluation in general, students are prepared for a number of careers and in a variety of settings, as noted above. This program does not lead to certification as a school psychologist or licensing as a Licensed Psychologist in the professional practice of psychology.


  • Learning & Instruction Sciences


This program is under an admissions moratorium and is not taking applications. If there are questions in the meantime, please refer to the faculty contact below. 


Applicants for direct admission with only a completed bachelor's degree must also have a minimum 15 semester hours of coursework in psychology with grades of B+ or better. These applicants should preferably have graduated with a psychology major, but majors in closely related fields will be considered. The applicants should also have an overall undergraduate GPA of at least 3.25 on a 4.0 scale. Applicants with one to two years of completed graduate work in an educational psychology, psychology or related master's program must have a minimum GPA of 3.50 on a 4.0 scale and be in good standing in their program.

Course Requirements

The Learning and Instruction Sciences Ph.D. requires at least 84 graduate semester hours in addition to the dissertation, following the baccalaureate degree for the Ph.D. Included in the Plan of Work is the 10-hour credit cognate requirement in the liberal arts psychology program. An additional 30 semester hours are required for the dissertation. The 30 dissertation hours must be taken at the rate of 7.5 credits per semester, over four consecutive semesters (spring/summer optional). While taking the dissertation hours, the student has full-time graduate student status. Students will find that a program of study consistent with their professional goals may require an amount of graduate credit beyond the minimum requirement.


Ph.D. in Educational Psychology Learning and Instruction Sciences Concentration

Psychological Foundations (30 hours required)

Courses - Individual Differences/Development (18 hours required) Cr. Hrs.
EDP 5450 Child Psychology 3
EDP 5480 Adolescent Psychology 3
EDP 8230 Fundamental Studies in EDP II: Growth and Development 3
EDP 7370 Adult Psychopathology 3
EDP 6210 Foundations of Educational Psychology 3
EDP 8250 Fundundamental Studies in EDP IV: Topical Seminar 3

Biological Bases of Behavior (3 hours required)

Courses Cr. Hrs.
PSY 7120 Biological Bases of Behavior 3

Cognitive Affective Bases of Behavior (11 hours required)

Courses Cr. Hrs.
EDP 7350 The Learning Process (doctoral section) 3
EDP 7420 Introduction to Behavior Psychology 4
EDP 7430 Applications I: Behavior Psychology and Social Learning 3

Social Bases of Behavior (3 hours required)

Courses Cr. Hrs.
EDP 7400 Foundations of Social Psychology 3

Statistics and Research Design (21 hours required)

Courses - Individual Differences/Development (14 hours required) Cr. Hrs.
ED 7999 Terminal Masters Project/Essay 3
EER 7630 Fundamentals of Statistics 3
EER 8800 Variance Covariance 4
EER 8820 Multivariate Analysis 4
EER 8992 Research and Expt. Design 4
EER 8760 Advanced Measurement I 3

Instructional Sciences and/or Educational Evaluation & Research (12 hours required)

Courses Cr. Hrs.
LDT 6110 Foundations of Instructional System Design 4*
LDT 7115 Understanding the Adult Learner 3
LDT 7210 Foundations of Distance Education 3*
LDT 7130 Facilitation of Online and Face to Face Learning 3*
LDT 7140 Web-based Courseware Development 3*
LDT 7240 Apps. Of New Technologies 3
LDT 7220 Multimedia for Instruction 3*
LDT 8120 Practicum in Instructional Technology 3*
EER 8720 Advanced Quantitative Program Evaluation: Theory and Research 3
EER 7870 Fundamentals of Qualitative Research 3
EER 8700 Advanced Qualitative Research 4
EER 8900 Qualitative Design for School Research 4
EER 8840 Structural Equation Modeling 3

* Required for certificate in online teaching

Professional Ethics (3 hours required)

Courses Cr. Hrs.
EDP 7300 Ethics, Standards & The Practice of Psychology 4
EDP 7520 Professional Ethics and Standards for Psychology 3

Cognate (10 hours required)

Courses Cr. Hrs.
PSY 7000 or above Electives including PSY 7120; students planning to teach at the college/university level should also take: PSY 78991 (1 credit) Preparing the Future Professional: Teaching Methods in Psychology 10

Dissertation (30 hours required)

Courses Cr. Hrs.
ED 9991 Doctoral Candidate Status I: Dissertation Research and Direction 7.5
ED 9992 Doctoral Candidate Status I: Dissertation Research and Direction 7.5
ED 9993 Doctoral Candidate Status I: Dissertation Research and Direction 7.5
ED 9994 Doctoral Candidate Status I: Dissertation Research and Direction 7.5

Program Handbook


Shannon Chavez-Korell, Ph.D., LP
Assistant professor (clinical)

Theoretical & Behavioral Foundations

Phone: 313-577-1613