PhD in Educational, School, and Counseling Psychology with Emphasis in Educational Research Methods and Analysis

Degree Requirements

This program focuses on design and analysis of quantitative studies. Researchers typically begin with adopting appropriate study designs (e.g., experimental, quasi-experimental, and observational study designs) for their research purpose. Researchers must verify that their measures are reliable and valid and may use analytic techniques like classical test theory or item response theory (IRT). Researchers submit their data to statistical techniques like analysis of variance (ANOVA), regression, structural equation modeling (SEM), and hierarchical linear model (HLM) to analyze the relationship among variables to answer their research questions.

General Core Courses33
Overview of Research Methods
Statistics and Research21
Foundations of Educational and Psychological Measurement
Quantitative Foundations in Educational Research
Qualitative Methods in Educational Research I
Application of Multivariate Analysis in Educational Research
Structural Equation Modeling
Hierarchical Linear Modeling
Human Learning6
Advanced Human Learning
Human Diversity (relevant course)3
Technology (relevant course)3
Reserch Methods21
Advanced Measurement3
Advanced Statistics≥ 9
Program Evaluation≥ 3
Specialized Topics Seminar≥ 3
Reading in Statistics and/or Measurement≥ 3
General Electives18
Elective courses can be taken from Educational, School, & Counseling Psychology or from other departments such as Psychological Sciences, Statistics, or Information Science and Learning Technology.

Sample Plan of Study

The plan of study will depend on the student’s career goals and research interests, and should be completed in consultation with the Doctoral Dissertation Committee.

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Qualifying Process

The Graduate School requires that students pass a qualifying examination as a condition of official admittance to the PhD  program. Acceptable performance on the Departmental Qualifying Examination is defined as achieving a grade of “B” or better in each of the courses comprising the “core” courses. For educational research methods and analysis, these courses are the following:

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Comprehensive Examination Process

To complete the comprehensive exam, students must complete evidence of professional activity (e.g. publication in a refereed journal, paper presentation at a national conference, development of a professionally published test or measure that is used nationally, evidence of teaching), evidence of teaching, and successful completion of a written comprehensive exam.

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Dissertation Requirements

After working with the academic advisor on developing a dissertation proposal, the student meets with the doctoral program committee to obtain approval of the written dissertation proposal. This happens before data collection begins. After the project is completed, the student submits a written dissertation and defends the dissertation to the doctoral program committee. The defense can occur only when MU is officially in session.

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Applicants are required to meet two sets of minimum qualifications for admission: the requirements of the PhD in Educational, School & Counseling Psychology program and the minimum requirements of the Office of Graduate Studies.  

  1. Apply online by submitting the following documents using the MU Office of Graduate Studies application form by January 15th for the next Fall cohort.
  2. The three letters of recommendation
  3. Curriculum Vita
  4. Official academic transcripts of all previous undergraduate and graduate work
    1. Minimum undergraduate GPA of 3.0 from an accredited institution in psychology, education, or a related major.
  5. Statement of purpose addressing the following:
    1. Describe experiences teaching, designing instruction, and engaging in research and how these experiences have prepared you for graduate study. (500 word maximum)
    2. Describe (1) your research interests that you hope to pursue in graduate school (2) how these interests match those of specific faculty (3) your career objectives, and (4) how being accepted into MU’s program will benefit your career aspirations. (Please limit to 500 words)
  6. Official Graduate Record Examination (GRE) scores for tests taken on or after August 1, 2011 should have a combined Verbal and Quantitative score of 305 or tests taken prior to August 1, 2011 combined Verbal and Quantitative score of 1200 or higher.
  7. TOEFL for international students (preferred score of 580 for paper test, 92 iBT, IELTS 6.5 or higher).

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