Our graduate programs at Clemson University build on the rich experiences and expertise of faculty and students to provide an educational environment in which both groups share in research, exploration and inquiry. The result of this synergy is impact — on our community and beyond.
The Doctor of Philosophy degree in curriculum and instruction is a research degree designed to prepare the student to become a scholar who can discover, integrate and apply knowledge, as well as communicate and disseminate it. The intent of the program is to prepare the student to make a significant original contribution to knowledge in a specialized field. The program prepares students in one of the following specialty concentrations: elementary education, English education, mathematics education, science education, social studies education, literacy education or special education. In addition, students may choose from a range of scholarly focus areas including academic and behavioral interventions for diverse learners; early childhood learning and development; informal education; STEM; international-global education; learning technologies and educational psychology; legal and policy issues in education; mixed methods and design-based research; motivation and learning; professional development and educational quality; qualitative research methodologies; research, evaluation, measurement and statistics; social, historical and philosophical foundations of education; social justice and educational equity; and sustainability education.
All students — regardless of the specialty concentration and/or areas of scholarly focus — are expected to work with faculty to design programs uniquely suited to their areas of interest.
Applications for the curriculum and instruction doctoral program are considered throughout the year. Only complete application packets are considered for admission and should be submitted by Oct.1 for spring admission and March 1 for summer/fall admission. Admission requirements include the following:
In addition to the application packet, students may be required to participate in an on-campus or telephone interview. Interviews are conducted in October and December for spring admissions and February and May for fall admissions.
This section includes the requirements for completing the doctoral degree. More detailed information about these requirements can be found in the Program Handbook.
Doctoral Seminars (2 hours)
Students will take these seminars beginning their first fall semester and continuing into the following spring semester.
ED 9030: This course initiates new doctoral students into the academic culture of a doctoral program, particularly at Clemson, with emphasis on the skills, strategies and dispositions of academic research and writing.
ED 9040: This course continues the process of introducing new doctoral students into the academic culture of a doctoral program, particularly at Clemson, with emphasis on the roles and responsibilities of teacher educators.
Program Core (Minimum 21 hours)
Core knowledge consists of constructs in educational foundations and curriculum and instruction. Core knowledge should be demonstrated in the following areas:
Area of Specialization (Minimum 24 hours)
Students study in a focused area of curriculum and instruction chosen from their concentration area. Each specialty area includes at least 24 hours of course work designed by the student's doctoral committee, to include:
Dissertation Credits (Minimum 18 hours)
Total minimum program hours – 65
Program Benchmark Expectations and Assessments
1. Professional Competence (documented by advisory committee). These competencies will be fulfilled before the student is awarded the doctoral degree.
2. Comprehensive Examination
3. Dissertation Proposal
While students must select from one of the special concentration areas listed below, they are also encouraged to work with faculty to design programs uniquely fitted to their areas of interest.
C&I Speciality Concentrations
In-depth knowledge of one or more of the academic areas taught in the elementary school with an understanding of how the selected area or areas relate to the learning and instructional needs of all students.
Mikel Cole, assistant professor (Language, Literacy and Culture)
Cynthia Deaton, assistant professor (Science)
Alison Leonard, assistant professor (Arts and Creativity)
David Reinking, distinguished professor (Literacy)
Debbie Smith, professor (Physical Education)
Mindy Spearman, associate professor (Social Studies)
Andrew Tyminski, assistant professor (Mathematics)
In depth knowledge in the field of reading with an understanding of the learning and instructional needs of all students.
Ysaaca Axelrod, assisstant professor (Early Childhood, Language, Literacy and Culture)
C.C. Bates, assistant professor
Mikel Cole, assistant professor (Language, Literacy and Culture)
Pamela Dunston, associate professor
Susan Fullerton, associate professor
Linda Gambrell, distinguished professor
Jonda McNair, associate professor
David Reinking, distinguished professor
In depth knowledge of disability and at-risk characteristics integrated with an understanding of how these characteristics relate to the learning and instructional needs of the individual.
Jennie Farmer, assistant professor
Janie Hodge, associate professor
Antonis Katsiyannis, distinguished professor
Sara Mackiewicz, assistant professor
Joe Ryan, associate professor
Pam Stecker, professor
Students completing an emphasis in English education will demonstrate a research knowledge base that includes the areas of teaching composition, literary response, language development, developments in English language and multimedia applications for the English classroom.
Students completing an emphasis in mathematics education will develop a knowledge base in current mathematics education issues, research and classroom applications and be able to select and pursue appropriate research topics in mathematics education.
Nicole Bannister, assisstant professor (middle level)
S. Megan Che, associate professor (secondary)
Robert Horton, professor (secondary)
Sandra Linder, assistant professor (early childhood)
Andrew Tyminski, assistant professor (joint appointment elementary and mathematical sciences)
Students completing an emphasis in science education will demonstrate an understanding of how the science process and content are most effectively learned, the components of state-of-the art curriculum models and the utilization of the most effective research methodologies designed to expand the theory base.
Michelle Cook, associate professor (secondary)
Cynthia Deaton, assistant professor (elementary)
Jeff C. Marshall, associate professor (secondary)
Cassie Quigley, assistant professor (middle level)
Students completing an emphasis in social studies education will develop a knowledge base in current social studies issues, research and classroom applications and be able to select and pursue appropriate research topics in social studies.
Robert P. Green, distinguished professor (educational foundations)
LaGarrett King, assisstant professor (secondary)
Suzanne Rosenblith, associate professor (educational foundations)
Mindy Spearman, associate professor (elementary)
Faculty research interests and expertise span many domains related to education. Below is a list of current areas of faculty scholarly interest and expertise.
C&I Faculty Research and Scholarhship
Research and scholarship focuses on instructional and behavioral interventions to address academic and behavioral learning needs of diverse students including those with disabilities and at risk of academic problems.
Research foci include: emergent bilingualism, first and second language development and learning in and out-of-school, as well as language ideologies and policies as they interact with schooling for linguistically diverse students.
Research examines the possibilities related to meaningfully integrating the STEM disciplines.
Matthew Boyer S. Megan Che
Jeff C. Marshall
Mixed methods research is the complementary use of quantitative and qualitative research methods in the collection and analysis of data, integration of findings and conclusions drawn from findings, while a design-based research is pragmatic and goal-oriented.
Research examines the various interventions and programs that better prepare in-service and pre-service educators.
David Barrett C.C. Bates
S. Megan Che
Jeff C. Marshall
Research that examines the teaching and learning processes using such traditions as ethnography, case study, phenomenology, grounded theory, historical and narrative research as well as emerging methodologies such as photo voice, self-study, portraiture and arts-based research.
Sustainability education is a 21st century reincarnation of the environmental education field with attention to sociocultural and economic factors affecting the environment. Education for sustainability seeks to educate students about creating a future where relationships between the environment, economic systems and human culture remain healthy.
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