Program Requirements

Program Prerequisites

Completion of HDLC M.A. Degree or equivalent program in educational, developmental, or cognitive psychology or a related field. This includes the following courses or equivalents:

EPSE 501 (3)   Seminar in Human Development, Learning and Culture

EPSE 503 (3)   Cultural Perspectives on Learning, Development and Media

EPSE 505 (3)   Foundations in Human Development: Infancy to Adulthood

EPSE 592 (3)   Experimental Designs and Analysis in Educational Research

EPSE 595 (3)   Qualitative Research Methods

If students would like to explore whether they have equivalents, or the possibility of taking an alternative course instead of one of the required ones, please refer to the HDLC’s Principles Page.

Program Requirements

The Ph.D. program in HDLC is individually tailored to balance program requirements with each student’s academic preparation toward professional and career goals. Specific coursework requirements are developed by each student in consultation with her/his academic advisor and faculty advisory committee, as outlined on the individualized Program of Graduate Studies (PGS).

Alert: As of September 2020, the HDLC program area shifted the program requirements to allow more flexibility for students, advisors, and program committees to individualize course requirements to meet students’ needs. Students who began their programs prior to September 2020 can work with their advisor/committee to either continue with program requirements at the time they started, or to follow these new guidelines. Note that, for reference, previous requirements are included on PGS forms from previous years (see HDLC Forms and Resources)

HDLC Content Requirements (6 to 12 credits)

At least two HDLC graduate-level courses chosen in consultation with your program committee.

HDLC Research and Methodology Requirements (6 to 12 credits)

By the end of their coursework, students in the HDLC Ph.D. Program are expected to demonstrate a high level of proficiency in research methodology that will enable them to (a) conduct their doctoral research and (b) teach courses that entail a level of research literacy at the senior undergraduate level or above (quantitative and/or qualitative).

To that end, in addition to our program prerequisites or equivalent (EPSE 592; EPSE 595), HDLC doctoral students must complete at least one additional advanced course in research methodology, chosen in consultation with their program committee.

Note that students who wish to further develop their methodological expertise might consider enrolling in the MERM sub-specialization (see link).

Additional Content Requirements (6 credits)

Students, in consultation with their academic advisor and program committee, will identify and enroll in at least two graduate-level courses that engage them in an exploration of theories, research, and methodologies that are relevant to their Doctoral Thesis. A record of this coursework should be documented on the individualized Program of Graduate Studies (PGS).

Comprehensive Examinations

Comprehensive Examinations are required of all Ph.D. students following completion of their coursework and prior to embarking on their doctoral research.

Find details regarding requirements for the Comprehensive Examinations. 

Doctoral Thesis

All HDLC Ph.D. students are required to complete a Doctoral Thesis (EPSE 699).

Find details regarding requirements for the Doctoral Thesis.