Degree Requirements

Undergraduate Degree Programs

Degree and Licensure Requirements for Teacher Education Students

Completion of the Teacher Education Program requires 4 years. After completing a minimum of 120 approved hours and the requirements for the specific teacher licensure program, the student receives a bachelor’s degree and is eligible for a Kansas teaching license.

Majors are available in the following teaching fields:

  • Unified Early Childhood (Birth-Grade 3)
  • Elementary (K-6)
  • Secondary English (6-12)
  • Middle Mathematics (5-8)
  • Secondary History and Government (6-12)
  • Middle Science (5-8)
  • Foreign languages (Chinese, French, German, Japanese, Latin, Russian, Spanish) (PreK-12)
  • Health and Physical Education (PreK-12)

Endorsements are available in the following areas:

  • English for Speakers of Other Languages (ESOL)
  • Special Education

  • (Note: Students must speak to the appropriate advisors while planning these added endorsements.)

A minimum cumulative grade-point average of 2.5 is required for graduation. However, admission requirements for student teaching in the senior year are based on the following criteria:

  1. Complete an Intent to Student Teach form and pass a criminal background check.
  2. At least a 2.5 grade-point average in the field in which a student intends to teach at the elementary, middle, and secondary level.
  3. A cumulative grade-point average of 2.75.

Students who complete the requirements for teacher licensure in their area, pass with a minimum score of 20 on the Kansas Performance Teaching Portfolio (KPTP), pass the state’s licensure examinations and PRAXIS II subject examination meet Kansas requirements for teacher licensure. Upon application through the Licensure Office, students are recommended to the Kansas State Board of Education for licensure. A handbook issued by the state board contains a summary of rules and regulations governing teachers’ licenses in Kansas. Each state has different requirements. Students planning to teach in other states should check with those states. Information about teaching requirements may be obtained from the Licensure Office. Information about the Kansas licensure examinations is available at Testing Services, 2150 Watkins Memorial Health Center, 785-864-2768.

Professional Development Schools

Before the senior year, teacher candidates may apply to complete their experiences in one of the Professional Development Schools. PDS schools are in 4 different districts, which may include elementary, middle, or secondary sites. The PDS experience is based on a collaborative team-teaching model, on-site application of content and teaching, and specific research designed around school improvement plans of the assigned sites. For more information, visit the School of Education.

Degree Requirements for Students in Nonlicensure Areas

Students in the non-teacher-licensure areas of athletic training, exercise science, sport managment, and community health usually complete the bachelor’s degree program in 4 years. Students seeking admission to undergraduate sport science and community health programs must have minimum cumulative grade-point averages of 2.75. Achieving the minimum grade-point average is not a guarantee of admission. Admission also is based on performance in core courses, academic preparation for the major, and the number of students each program can admit.

Licensure: Added Endorsements

At least 8 hours of the required course work must be completed at KU if it is to be the recommending institution for adding endorsements to the teaching license. For information about adding endorsements, contact the School of Education at 785-864-3726.

Master's Degree Programs

Master’s degrees are granted on satisfactory completion of not less than 1 academic year, or its equivalent, of graduate study. The school provides 3 options for the master’s degree:

  • The thesis option,
  • The project option, and
  • A minimum 36-graduate-credit-hour study option.

At least 20 of the credit hours required for master’s programs must be in regular course work, as contrasted with independent study and similar enrollments. Students pursuing the 36-hour program option must have 26 hours in regular course work. All master’s programs require a graduate class in research and evaluation methods, successfully completed during the first 12 hours. As part of the requirement for the degree, the candidate must pass a final oral or written examination. A candidate’s advisor and 2 additional members of the Graduate Faculty constitute the examining committee for the thesis or project options. The department prepares and evaluates the written examination for the credit-hour degree option.

To ensure continuity of progress and currency of knowledge, there is a 7-year time limit for completion of master’s degree requirements. The Graduate Division has the authority to grant a 1-year extension for compelling reasons, on recommendation of the department/committee. If more than 8 years are requested, the appropriate appeals body of the school considers petitions for further extensions and, where evidence of continuous progress, currency of knowledge, and other reasons are compelling, may grant further extensions.

Note: Because substantive and procedural differences exist among the programs, some may have more stringent policies on time extensions. Students should inquire about the specific policies in effect in the department or program in which they intend to study.

Note: To be eligible for the degree, a student pursuing the thesis option must deposit signed title and acceptance pages and a signed ETD Release form and complete all other requirements before the degree requirements submission deadline in the graduate academic calendar. Graduate Studies establishes the degree submission deadline each year. Please see the Graduate Studies website for more information.

Master of Arts

A candidate for the Master of Arts degree completes work both in education and in a teaching area (other than physical education). For students who choose the thesis or project option, a minimum of 30 hours of graduate credit is required for this degree, of which no fewer than 10 and no more than 15 hours must be earned in the teaching area. Some work must be elected in at least 2 of the approved graduate program areas in the School of Education. The candidate must complete a thesis related to the teaching area (6 hours maximum credit applicable to degree requirements) or complete the nonthesis option by enrolling in Master’s Project (4 hours applicable to degree requirements). While enrolled, the candidate submits a research paper related to the teaching area to the advisor. Check with the department for specific course requirements for the 36-hour master’s degree option.

Master of Science

A candidate for the degree of Master of Science in Counseling Psychology earns a concentration in mental health counseling. A minimum of 30 credit hours is required for this degree, of which no fewer than 10 hours must be in the concentration. In most cases, additional credit hours are required.

Master of Science in Education

A candidate for the degree of Master of Science in Education selects 1 of the program areas as a concentration for graduate study. A minimum of 30 credit hours is required, of which no fewer than 10 hours must be in the concentration. Credit in Thesis or Master’s Project may not be included in these 10 hours. The candidate must elect course work in at least 2 graduate program areas outside the major concentration. Normally, these courses would be in the School of Education. The candidate must complete a thesis in the concentration (6 hours maximum credit applicable to degree requirements) or complete the nonthesis option by enrolling in Master’s Project (4 hours applicable to degree requirements). While enrolled, the candidate submits a research paper related to the specialization to the advisor. Check with the department for specific course requirements for the 36-hour master’s degree option.

Specialist in Education Degree Program

The Specialist in Education program consists of 2 years of full-time graduate study (about 70 semester credit hours) followed by a third year of internship. Students completing the program are licensed for early childhood through grade 12 if they obtain 100 hours of applied experience with young children and their families in practica or internship.

Doctoral Degree Programs

Doctoral Degree Admission Policies

The application for admission to graduate studies and the Graduate Division of the School of Education for doctoral study must specify the major program area. Materials included with the application form usually consist of

  1. Official transcripts of undergraduate- and graduate-level courses indicating grade-point average,
  2. Letters of recommendation and/or survey-type evaluation forms from previous instructors and professional colleagues,
  3. Personal statements about professional goals,
  4. Representative writings and/or other media samples related to the proposed area,
  5. A résumé of professional experience, and
  6. Scores from the verbal, quantitative, and writing sections of the Graduate Record Examination.

Each department in the Graduate Division has determined the specific information and scores required for admission. Contact the graduate advisor of the department that offers the major for instructions about completing the application for admission.

In general, applicants with 3.5 grade-point averages on a 4.0 scale for the first 30 graduate-level hours (e.g., master’s degree), scores at the 50th percentile across the 3 GRE subtests, and validated strengths on the additional indicators are viable candidates for admission. However, this profile is intended only as an example and should not be construed as a guarantee of admission to a doctoral program. Several programs have limited student admissions because of the need to balance faculty resources with the demands of maintaining high-quality teaching, scholarship, and professional service activities.

Departments offering approved doctoral programs may recommend provisional admission of a student who has not met the criteria or prerequisites to do advanced graduate-level work. Provisional admission requires the satisfactory completion (e.g., with a 3.5 grade-point average) of 12 or more hours in regularly scheduled graduate courses, at least half of which must come from core areas. After the completion of the provisional program, the department recommends to the Graduate Division that the student

  1. Be transferred to regular status or
  2. Be allowed to continue for another 9 hours or
  3. Be dropped from the program.

Doctor of Education

The Doctor of Education is awarded upon completion of 3 years of advanced training in both the theory and the practice of education. It is a professional degree intended primarily for practitioners in education rather than for researchers, for whom the Ph.D. is the appropriate degree plan. The Ed.D. is offered in curriculum and instruction, educational administration, higher education, and special education.

Advisory Committee

A student admitted to study for the Ed.D. is considered an aspirant for the degree until the comprehensive examination has been passed. After passing this examination, the student is considered a candidate for the degree. Each student must have an advisory committee of at least 3 members of the Graduate Faculty. 1 member of the committee serves as the chair. The student meets with this committee before completing 12 hours of course work to plan and approve formally an appropriate program leading to the Ed.D. The approved program, signed by members of the committee and the student, is placed in the student’s file in the School of Education Graduate Division office.

Requirements

Students must acquaint themselves thoroughly with departmental requirements for the degree, which may be in addition to general requirements and those of the School of Education. Consistent with Graduate Studies’ general regulations, it is each student’s responsibility to know and observe all university, school, departmental, and academic program regulations and procedures relating to the graduate program. In no case will a regulation be waived or an exception be granted because a student pleads ignorance of, or contends he or she was not informed of, requirements, regulations, procedures, or deadlines. Responsibility for following all policies and meeting all requirements and deadlines rests with the student.

1. Time Limit

To ensure continuity of progress and currency of knowledge, doctoral degree students normally complete all requirements for the degree in 8 years after first enrollment in a program leading directly to a doctoral degree. Except for the core requirement, course work submitted to complete doctoral degree requirements must be completed within school or departmental time limits or extensions thereto. The Graduate Division has the authority to grant a 1-year extension of the normal 8-year time limit for compelling reasons, on the written advice of the dissertation committee. If more than 9 years are requested, the appropriate appeals body of the school considers petitions for extensions and, where evidence of continuous progress, currency of knowledge, and other reasons are compelling, may grant further extensions. There is a 10-year limit on combined master’s and doctoral degree programs.

Note: Because substantive and procedural differences exist among the programs, some may have more stringent policies on time extensions. Students should inquire about the specific policies in effect in the department or program in which they intend to study.

A student may petition the School of Education Graduate Division through the department for a leave of absence during either the pre- or post-comprehensive period to pursue full-time professional activities related to the student’s doctoral program and long-range professional goals. Leaves of absence also may be granted because of illness or other emergency. Ordinarily a leave of absence is granted for 1 year, with the possibility of extension on request. After an absence of 5 years, however, a doctoral aspirant or candidate loses status as such and, to continue, must re-apply for readmission to the program and to Graduate Studies.

2. Period of Continuous Study

The student must spend the equivalent of 3 academic years, including the time spent attaining the master’s degree, in a period of continuous study at this or another approved university. During the time the student is engaged in the Ed.D. program at KU, 1 of the following options must be satisfied:

  • (a) 2 consecutive semesters, 1 of which may be a summer session, of full-time enrollment in regularly scheduled courses normally at the program’s home campus. (Full time equals 9 hours in fall or spring and 6 hours in summer.)
  • (b) 2 consecutive semesters of at least 6 hours and an adjacent summer session of at least 3 hours, all in regularly scheduled courses at the program’s home campus.
  • (c) 3 consecutive semester enrollments (excluding summer session) of at least 6 hours each in regularly scheduled courses on the program’s home campus.
  • (d) 18 hours taken during the period encompassed by 2 consecutive summer sessions with enrollment in each of the 4 semesters: summer, fall, spring, summer.
  • (e) 27 hours taken during any 5 consecutive semesters (including summer sessions) with enrollment in each semester. During this period, the student must be employed full-time in a field directly related to the student’s academic major.

These options include the following stipulations:

  • Only course work taken after the first year of graduate study, that is, after the master’s degree or its equivalent, may satisfy the period-of-continuous-study requirement.
  • Dissertation, individual study, field experience, and off-campus practicum hours may not be included in the stated minimal requirements.
  • For all enrollments of 8 hours or more, 1 course may be taken away from the program’s home campus, e.g., on the KU Edwards Campus, if need can be demonstrated from a scheduling standpoint.

For options (b), (c), and (d), at least quarter-time, appropriately related, professional involvement on or off campus is required.

The period of continuous study is not merely a requirement measured in hours of enrollment or of credit in courses counted toward a degree but may include other academic and professional activities appropriate to the field of study.

The student, with the help of the advisory committee, must file in the Graduate Division office a period-of-continuous-study plan congruent with School of Education requirements before the beginning of the formal period of continuous study. This plan may be filed as a part of the overall program plan.

The period-of-continuous-study requirement for the Ed.D. ensures a minimum period of bona fide on-campus study and related academic and professional involvement. Because of the particular professional nature of the degree, appropriately related professional endeavors may include off-campus activities. However, the credit-hour elements of the requirement must be fulfilled by course work on the program’s home campus. (Note the exceptions above.) Exceptional circumstances or plans must be approved in advance on an individual basis by petition to the Graduate Division of the School of Education.

3. Program Area

All candidates for the Ed.D. must complete a minimum of 27 credit hours in their major area, excluding credits used to fulfill Research Skills, Dissertation, and the doctoral practicum requirements. Coursework completed at KU or at another institution as part of a previous graduate degree, cannot be used to meet the credit hour requirements for this degree.

4. Research Skills

Upon admission to doctoral study, students who have not completed a research and evaluation methods course for the education master’s degree must take the course, e.g., PRE 715, during the first doctoral enrollment. The course used to fulfill this requirement, whether taken at KU or at another institution, does not count toward any doctoral requirements.

Before being admitted to the comprehensive examination, students must present satisfactory evidence that they possess the professional research skills of advanced practitioners in their concentrations by meeting the following research skills requirements: Complete a minimum of 9 hours of graduate study in 1 or more supporting areas that develop skills relevant to understanding, promoting, and evaluating professional practice. Supporting areas may include statistics, assessment and evaluation, qualitative methods, or historical or philosophical methods. Up to 6 hours, excluding credit hours for the required master’s course in research methods and evaluation, whether taken at KU or elsewhere, may be waived using prior B-level or higher graduate course work. Research skills requirements vary among programs to meet the individual needs of students. The student must secure the most recent information on research skills requirements from the appropriate department.

The research skills requirements chosen by the student must be approved and passed upon by the advisory committee. The chair must file the results in the School of Education Graduate Division office on the appropriate form so that they may be recorded on the student’s permanent record.

Responsible Conduct of Research: All students must satisfy departmental and university requirements regarding the responsible conduct of research. Contact your department or program for more information about research skills and responsible scholarship, and the current requirements for doctoral students. Current Lawrence and Edwards Campus policies on Doctoral Research Skills and Responsible Scholarship are listed in the KU Policy Library.

5. Doctoral Practicum Enrollment

Ed.D. aspirants must complete at least 1 structured 3-credit-hour practicum in a supervised internship setting. A description of the practicum prepared by the student and approved by the advisory committee must be filed with the department and the graduate records office. Specific requirements for this practicum experience are available from students’ departments.

6. Comprehensive Examination

The comprehensive examination should be scheduled after the student has completed the research skills requirements and all, or a major portion, of the course work for the concentration. The department must request the School of Education Graduate Division office to schedule the comprehensive examination. This request is to be made at least 2 weeks before the date of the written portion of the examination.

The examining committee must consist of at least 5 members (usually including the advisory committee). All must be graduate faculty, and 3 of the 5 must be regular faculty from the student’s home department.

The student passes the comprehensive examination if a majority of the official examining committee (including the chair) approves the student’s performance. The grade on this examination is Honors, Satisfactory, or Unsatisfactory. If the aspirant fails the comprehensive examination, he or she may be allowed, upon the department’s recommendation, to repeat it, but it may not be taken more than 3 times. In any case, the student may not repeat the examination until at least 90 days have elapsed since the last unsuccessful attempt.

Note: Students in Ed.D. programs must pass both written and oral components of the comprehensive examination. Satisfactory performance on the written component must be attained before the oral component may be attempted. To fail either component is to fail the examination. All members of the student’s comprehensive examination committee are involved in the evaluation process. The written component of the comprehensive examination, like the oral, focuses on advanced knowledge in the major and any appropriately related areas. The focus of the examination is the ability to relate this knowledge to tasks and problems faced by practitioners. The duration of the entire written component of the comprehensive examination is to be a minimum of 16 hours. If a student passes the written component but fails the oral, the examining committee determines whether both components or only the oral must be repeated, after the minimal 90-day interim period.

7. Dissertation Committee and Proposal

Doctoral aspirants may begin work on the dissertation after they complete the equivalent of 1 full-time semester of doctoral study in regular student status and may use their research practicum experience in preparation for the dissertation. However, students may first enroll in dissertation credit hours only during the semester in which they take their comprehensive examinations. Dissertation hours taken during that semester count toward the minimum of 12 hours of post-comprehensive enrollment only if the examinations are passed during that same semester.

Upon passing the comprehensive examination, the aspirant becomes a candidate for the Doctor of Education degree. Based on recommendations of the candidate’s department, the Graduate Division designates the candidate’s dissertation committee at this time. The dissertation proposal committee must consist of at least 3 members (usually including the advisory committee) and may include members from other departments and, on occasion, from outside the university. All committee members are to be members of the graduate faculty. A committee member from outside the university becomes an ad hoc member of the graduate faculty.

The dissertation proposal must be read by all members of the dissertation committee. 1 copy of the approved dissertation proposal, signed by all members of the dissertation committee, must be submitted (with the appropriate form) to the School of Education Graduate Division office.

8. Continuous Enrollment

After passing the comprehensive examination, the candidate must be continuously enrolled, including summer sessions, until the degree is completed. Each enrollment must reflect as accurately as possible the candidate’s demands on faculty time and university facilities. A student must be continuously enrolled in accordance with the following schedule: Until the degree is completed or until 18 post-comprehensive hours have been completed (whichever comes first), the student must enroll for a minimum of 6 hours a semester and 3 hours during summer session. Students who have not completed the degree after completing 18 hours of post-comprehensive enrollment must continue to enroll for the amount of credit that best reflects their demands on faculty time and university resources each semester and each summer session until they pass the final oral examination.

Post-comprehensive enrollment may include enrollment during the semester or summer session in which the comprehensive examination has been passed. Students may enroll for dissertation hours as well as other courses when the examination is taken. Students who do not pass the examination cannot apply dissertation hours to degree requirements. The candidate may petition the School of Education Graduate Division for a leave of absence during the period between the comprehensive examination and the final oral examination. Again, specific degree programs may have more stringent rules than general requirements.

9. Dissertation

The candidate must present a dissertation that exhibits the application of existing knowledge in the major field of professional study. Ed.D. candidates may satisfy the dissertation requirement by completing a comprehensive, critical assessment of the relevant literature on a major educational issue or problem. This study should demonstrate the application of existing knowledge to the author’s area of professional practice. Various styles and formats for theses and dissertations are acceptable. The format and style of a student’s thesis or dissertation is left to the discretion of the student and the advisor, but format and style options may be constrained or dictated by the policy of the department from which the student is to receive the degree. The dissertation is prepared under the direction of the dissertation committee. The minimum number of dissertation hours in any degree program is 12. Instructions regarding the proper form of the final document may be obtained from the School of Education Graduate Division office.

10. Final Oral Examination

When the dissertation has been tentatively accepted by the dissertation committee, the chair of the dissertation committee may request the School of Education Graduate Division office to schedule the final oral examination. This request must be made at least 2 weeks before the desired examination date. At least 5 months must elapse between the successful completion of the comprehensive examination and the date of the final oral examination. Upon approval by the Graduate Division, the final oral examination is scheduled at the time and the place designated in the request and publicly announced. Although the dissertation committee is responsible for the certification of the candidate, any member of the Graduate Faculty may be present at the examination and may participate in the questioning.

The official examining committee consists of at least 5 members, including the dissertation committee. At least 1 member must be from a department other than the candidate’s major department. This member is called the Outside committee member and represents Graduate Studies.

The final examination must be partly oral and may be wholly so. The examination covers the dissertation and the concentration. The candidate passes the final examination if a majority of the official examining committee (including the chair) approves the candidate’s performance. When the final oral examination has been passed, the dissertation committee reports a grade of Honors, Satisfactory, or Unsatisfactory. Candidates who fail the final oral examination may be allowed to repeat it upon the recommendation of the dissertation committee.

11. Dissertation Copies

When the final oral examination has been passed and the dissertation has been signed by the members of the dissertation committee, a title page and acceptance page with original signatures and the ETD Release form are to be delivered to the Graduate Division so that completion of degree requirements may be officially certified.

Doctor of Philosophy with a Major in Education

The Doctor of Philosophy degree is awarded for mastering a field of scholarship, learning the methods of investigation appropriate to that field, and completing a substantial piece of original research. The degree is intended to produce highly competent scholars who are prepared to be university faculty members and other professionals, to conduct and evaluate original research, to teach at the college/university level, and to provide discipline-related leadership to the field and to the public. The Ph.D. is offered in all education graduate programs.

Although the courses and the research leading to the Ph.D. are necessarily specialized, the attainment of this degree should not be an isolated event in the enterprise of learning. The aspirant for the Ph.D. is expected to be a well-educated person and should have acquired a broad base of general knowledge, both as preparation for more advanced work and as a means of knowing how the concentration is related to other fields of human thought.

Advisory Committee

A student admitted to study for the Ph.D. is known as an aspirant for the degree until the comprehensive examination has been passed. After passing this examination, the student is known as a candidate for the degree. Each student must have an advisory committee consisting of at least 3 members of the Graduate Faculty. 1 member of the committee serves as the chair. 1 member must be from the graduate department representing the student’s minor area. The student meets with this committee before completing 12 hours of course work to plan and approve formally an appropriate program leading to the Ph.D. The approved program, signed by members of the committee and the student, is placed in the student’s file in the School of Education Graduate Division office.

Requirements

Students must acquaint themselves thoroughly with departmental requirements for the degree, which may be in addition to general requirements and those of the School of Education. Consistent with Graduate Studies’ general regulations, it is the student’s responsibility to know and observe all university, school, departmental, and academic program regulations and procedures relating to the graduate program. In no case will a regulation be waived or an exception be granted because a student pleads ignorance of, or contends that he or she was not informed of, requirements, regulations, procedures, or deadlines. Responsibility for following all policies and meeting all requirements and deadlines rests with the student.

1. Time Limit

To ensure continuity of progress and currency of knowledge, doctoral degree students normally complete all requirements for the degree in 8 years after first enrollment in a program leading directly to a doctoral degree. Except for the core requirement, course work submitted to complete doctoral degree requirements must be completed within school or departmental time limits or extensions thereto. The Graduate Division has the authority to grant a 1-year extension of the normal 8-year time limit for compelling reasons, on the written advice of the dissertation committee. If more than 9 years are requested, the appropriate appeals body of the school considers petitions for extensions and, where evidence of continuous progress, currency of knowledge, and other reasons are compelling, may grant further extensions. There is a 10-year limit on combined master’s and doctoral degree programs.

Note: Because substantive and procedural differences exist among the programs, some may have more stringent policies on time extensions. Students should inquire about the specific policies in effect in the department or program in which they intend to study.

A student may petition the School of Education Graduate Division through the department for a leave of absence during either the pre- or post-comprehensive period to pursue full-time professional activities related to the student’s doctoral program and long-range professional goals. Leaves of absence also may be granted because of illness or other emergency. Ordinarily, a leave of absence is granted for 1 year, with the possibility of extension on request. After an absence of 5 years, however, a doctoral aspirant or candidate loses status as such and, to continue, must re-apply for readmission to the program and to Graduate Studies.

2. Resident Study

The student must spend the equivalent of 3 academic years, including the time spent attaining the master’s degree, in resident study at this or another approved university. Because general requirements do not specify a minimum number of hours for the degree, no transfer of credits is appropriate. Departments do, however, consider relevant prior graduate work in setting up programs of study leading to the doctorate.

Residence Requirement. 2 semesters (which may include 1 summer session), usually consecutive, at any time beginning with the first semester of doctoral study must be spent in resident study at KU. Residence is not merely a period measured in hours. During this period the student must be involved full time in academic pursuits, which may include up to half-time on-campus teaching or research, or under certain circumstances, a greater percentage of research if it is directed specifically toward the student’s degree objectives. Such activities permit commensurate decreases in the hourly enrollment minima. The student must continue to be enrolled in at least 6 hours under any special conditions. Increased research involvement must be fully supported and documented by the dissertation advisor as contributing to the student’s dissertation. The research work must be performed under the direct supervision of the student’s advisor, if on campus, or with adequate liaison, if off campus. Special circumstances such as internal employment for more than half time as a teaching or research assistant, or as another type of university employee, must have advance approval on an individual basis by petition to the Graduate Division of the School of Education. The student, with the help of the advisory committee, must file in the Graduate Division office a residence plan congruent with School of Education requirements before the beginning of the formal residence period. This plan may be filed as a part of the overall program plan. Because residence is not merely a requirement measured in hours of enrollment or of credit in courses toward a degree, the plan may include other academic and professional activities appropriate to the field of study.

Note: Hourly enrollment requirements must be met through courses at the program’s home campus, and if appropriate internal employment is not involved, at least 9 hours must be in regularly scheduled courses.

3. Program Area

In applying for doctoral study, the student specifies a program area in which formal classes and research work are to be done and in which she or he expects to become a scholar. A minimum of 36 credit hours is required in the major area, excluding credits used to fulfill research skills and the dissertation requirements. The doctoral core requirement (EDUC 800) may be included as part of the major if it is consistent with the student’s area of study and if doing so is supported by the student’s department and doctoral committee. Fifty percent of the student’s major must be 800-level or above (18 credit hours). The program must include at least 6 credit hours outside of the student’s home department, not including courses required to fulfill the student’s research skills component or the doctoral core (EDUC 800).

Note: Course work completed at KU or at another institution as part of a previous graduate degree, cannot be used to meet the credit hour requirements for this degree.

Upon admission to doctoral study, students who have not completed a research and evaluation methods course for the education master’s degree must take the course, e.g. PRE 715, during the first doctoral enrollment. The course taken to fulfill this requirement, whether taken at KU or at another institution, does not count toward any doctoral requirements.

4. Core Requirement

All students are required to complete EDUC 800: Education as a Field of Scholarship, in their first year of doctorate enrollment.

5. Teaching Experience

In addition to the requirements above, the student must satisfactorily complete at least 1 semester of supervised college teaching experience under the direction of a KU faculty member. This may be completed during the semester in which the student takes the comprehensive examination, but ordinarily it should be completed before admission to the comprehensive examination.

6. Research Skills

Before being admitted to the comprehensive examination, the student must have completed the research skills requirements established for the degree. Specific research skills requirements vary with department and program, but all reflect the expectation of a significant research skills component distinct from the dissertation but strongly supportive of it. The Ph.D. research skills requirement includes completion of at least 12 graduate hours relevant to the aspirant’s research: statistics, measurement and assessment, qualitative methods, historical and philosophical methods, or foreign language (a reading knowledge in 1 foreign language is equivalent to 6 hours of credit). Up to 6 hours, excluding credit hours for the required master’s course in research methods and evaluation, whether taken at KU or elsewhere, may be waived using prior B-level or higher graduate course work. A statement concerning specific research skills should be secured from the student’s major department. At least 9 of the 12 credit hours must be 800 level or above. The 12 credit hours cannot include PRE 715 or its program equivalent.

When the student has met the requirements for research skills, the committee chair must report this to the Graduate Division on the appropriate form, certifying that the student is prepared to proceed to the comprehensive oral examination. If a program requires research skills that are tested separately rather than integrally with the program, the completion of each requirement should be reported immediately to the Graduate Division so that it may be recorded on the student’s permanent record.

Some commonly used skills are listed under Doctoral Degree Requirements, Doctor of Philosophy, Research Skills and Responsible Scholarship  in the Graduate Studies section of the online catalog.

Responsible Conduct of Research: All students must satisfy departmental and university requirements regarding the responsible conduct of research. In order to meet this requirement, students are required to complete EDUC 800 Education as a Field of Scholarship, in their first years of doctorate enrollment.

7. Comprehensive Examination

When a Ph.D. aspirant has completed the major portion of the course work at a satisfactory level and has completed the research skills requirement and all other departmental requirements prerequisite to the comprehensive examination, the department asks the School of Education Graduate Division office to schedule the comprehensive examination. This request is to be made at least 2 weeks before the date of the written portion of the examination. Students must be enrolled when they take the exam. The examining committee must consist of at least 5 members (usually including the advisory committee). All must be graduate faculty, and 3 of the 5 must be regular faculty from the student’s home department.

The comprehensive examination consists of both written and oral parts and covers the major and minor areas pursued by the student. The student passes the comprehensive examination if a majority of the official examining committee (including the chair) approves the student’s performance. The grade on this examination is Honors, Satisfactory, or Unsatisfactory. An aspirant who receives a grade of Unsatisfactory may be allowed, upon the recommendation of the department, to repeat it, but it may not be taken more than 3 times. The aspirant may not repeat the examination until at least 90 days have elapsed since the last unsuccessful attempt.

Note: Students in Ph.D. education programs must pass both written and oral components of the comprehensive examination. Satisfactory performance on the written component must be attained before the oral component may be attempted. To fail either component is to fail the examination. All 5 members of the student’s comprehensive examination committee are involved in the evaluation process. The written component of the comprehensive examination, like the oral, focuses on advanced knowledge in the major and any appropriate related areas. To pass, the student must be evaluated as having responded satisfactorily to questions in the major areas. If a student fails any portion of the written comprehensive component, a failure of the examination is recorded. The examining committee determines if the entire written component of the examination, or only the failed portion(s), must be retaken. The entire written component lasts a minimum of 16 hours. If a student passes the written component but fails the oral, the examining committee determines if both components or only the oral must be repeated, after the minimal 90-day interim period.

8. Dissertation Committee and Proposal

Doctoral aspirants may begin work on the dissertation after they complete the equivalent of 1 full-time semester of doctoral study in regular student status and may use their research practicum experience in preparation for the dissertation. However, students may first enroll in dissertation credit hours only during the semester in which they take their comprehensive examinations. Dissertation hours taken during that semester count toward the minimum of 18 hours of dissertation credit only if the examinations are passed during that same semester.

Upon passing the comprehensive examination, the aspirant becomes a candidate for the Ph.D. The Graduate Division, using the recommendations of the candidate’s department, designates the dissertation committee at this time. This committee consists of at least 3 members (usually including the advisory committee) and may include members from outside the university. All committee members are to be members of the Graduate Faculty. A committee member from outside the university becomes an Ad Hoc member of the Graduate Faculty.

The dissertation proposal must be read by all members of the dissertation committee. 1 copy of the approved dissertation proposal, signed by all members of the dissertation committee, must be submitted (with the appropriate form) to the School of Education Graduate Division office.

9. Continuous Enrollment

After passing the comprehensive examination, the candidate must be continuously enrolled, including summer sessions, until the degree is completed. A student must be continuously enrolled in accordance with the following schedule: Until the degree is completed or until 18 post-comprehensive hours have been completed (whichever comes first), the student must enroll for at least 6 hours a semester and 3 hours a summer session. Students who have not completed the degree after completing 18 hours of post-comprehensive enrollment must continue to enroll for the amount of credit that best reflects their demands on faculty time and university resources each semester and each summer session until they pass the final oral examination.

Post-comprehensive enrollment may include enrollment during the semester or summer session in which the comprehensive examination has been passed. Students may enroll for dissertation hours as well as other courses when the examination is taken. Students who do not pass the examination cannot apply dissertation hours to degree requirements. Under certain conditions, the candidate may petition the School of Education Graduate Division for a leave of absence during the period between the comprehensive examination and the final oral examination.

10. Dissertation

The candidate must present a dissertation showing the results of original research. The dissertation for the Ph.D. considers applied or basic concerns and results in conclusions that have broad theoretical implications. Various styles and formats for theses and dissertations are acceptable. The format and style of a student’s thesis or dissertation is left to the discretion of the student and the advisor, but format and style options may be constrained or dictated by Graduate Studies policies. The dissertation is prepared under the direction of the dissertation committee. The norm for dissertation enrollment is about 24 credit hours. The minimum number of dissertation hours in any degree program is 18. Instructions regarding the proper form of the final document may be obtained from the School of Education Graduate Division office.

11. Final Oral Examination

When the dissertation has been tentatively accepted by the dissertation committee, the chair of the dissertation committee may request the School of Education Graduate Division office to schedule the final oral examination. This request must be made at least 2 weeks before the desired examination date. At least 5 months must elapse between the successful completion of the comprehensive examination and the date of the final oral examination.

The examining committee must consist of at least 5 members (usually including the advisory committee). All must be graduate faculty, and 3 of the 5 must be regular faculty from the students home department.

The final examination must be partly oral and may be wholly so. The examination covers the dissertation and the candidate’s concentration and minor area. The candidate passes the final examination if a majority of the official examining committee members (including the chair) approves the candidate’s performance. When the final oral examination has been passed, the dissertation committee reports a grade of Honors, Satisfactory, or Unsatisfactory. Candidates who fail the final oral examination may be allowed to repeat it upon the recommendation of the dissertation committee.

12. Dissertation Copies

When the final oral examination has been passed and the dissertation has been signed by the members of the dissertation committee, a title page and acceptance page with original signatures and ETD Release form are to be delivered to the Graduate Division so that completion of degree requirements may be officially certified.

Licensure: Added Endorsements

At least 8 hours of the required course work must be completed at KU if it is to be the recommending institution for adding endorsements to the teaching license. For information about adding endorsements, contact the School of Education at 785-864-3726.

Contact Info

School of Education

Welcome Center, Joseph R. Pearson Hall
1122 West Campus Road, Room 208
Lawrence, KS 66045-3101
785-864-3726
785-864-5076
soe@ku.edu
http://www.soe.ku.edu/
Rick Ginsberg, Dean
785-864-4297
Lon Dehnert, Assistant Dean, Academic Services
785-864-9603

School of Education

Welcome Center, Joseph R. Pearson Hall
1122 West Campus Road, Room 208
Lawrence, KS 66045-3101
785-864-3726
soe@ku.edu
http://www.soe.ku.edu/
Sally Roberts, Associate Dean, Undergraduate Programs
785-864-0553

School of Education

Welcome Center, Joseph R. Pearson Hall
1122 West Campus Road, Room 208
Lawrence, KS 66045-3101
785-864-3726
soe@ku.edu
http://www.soe.ku.edu/
James Lichtenberg, Associate Dean, Graduate Programs and Research
785-864-9656
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