Educational Research, Statistics, and Evaluation prepares students to plan and conduct empirical research and evaluation in order to add to the knowledge about educational practice and policy. The program prepares students to apply the quantitative and qualitative approaches in seeking solutions to educational problems by equipping them to state important educational questions, bring existing knowledge to bear on such questions, create efficient designs for collecting data that are relevant to such questions, use appropriate procedures for analyzing the data, and communicate the findings effectively.
Graduate training will prepare students to apply a variety of contemporary research methods to the investigation of problems in educational sciences. Successful students will:
- Understand the philosophical underpinnings of various approaches to scientific inquiry;
- Identify and state educational questions in ways that facilitate answering them through contemporary quantitative and/or qualitative research methods;
- Create efficient designs for collecting data that are relevant to such questions, use and analyzing data;
- Use powerful and appropriate procedures for analyzing the data, and communicate the findings effectively.
The PhD program includes coursework, a research apprenticeship in which students can focus their program of study to align with a quantitative, qualitative and/or program evaluation orientation through selection of appropriate mentors, and other experiences to: (1) analyze research methods in education literature, (2) conduct research in education with contemporary methods, (3) educate teachers of research methodology, and (4) serve as expert consultants in the design and implementation of educational research and/or evaluation.
Graduates at the master’s level are employed by school systems, state education departments, schools of education, nursing, medicine, etc., and other public and private organizations engaged in educational research or evaluation. Doctoral-level graduates are qualified for a wide variety of leadership positions. Many have become professors in universities, while others have found leadership positions in state and national educational agencies and organizations, in profit and non-profit private educational firms, and in industry.