DOCTORAL

Educational Foundations and Policy

Overview & Requirements
Applying
Careers & Internships

The Educational Foundations and Policy concentration offers the opportunity to engage a diverse community of doctoral students and faculty members in reimagining education as a central component of the transformation needed to create more inclusive and just societies.

In this program, we offer students a wealth of opportunities: 

  • Participate in a trans-disciplinary course of study that integrates philosophical, historical, sociological, cultural, anthropological, organizational, political, and psychological perspectives. 
  • Examine diversity, structured inequality, and equity as matters central to the past, present, and future of education. 
  • Explore ways researchers, policy makers, leaders, and reformers can collaborate with practicing educators to transform schools and society.

The foundation for this work is preparation in multiple, complementary theoretical and methodological traditions that support both critical and practical educational research and scholarship.

Human diversity encompasses differences related to individuals' and groups' experiences, meaning making, and identities; and thus, their learning assets, needs, opportunities, and challenges. This program stresses the importance of educators and other professionals appreciating, responding to, and learning from diversity in a way that fosters educational equity.

Equity encompasses providing high quality education to all students. Equity-oriented work requires a sophisticated understanding of extant social and structured inequalities, and the historical processes that created them. This program emphasizes understanding inequality both in terms of educational outcomes and how inequality can be structured into sense-making, relationships, and systems. We examine how inequities can be inadvertently reproduced or intentionally challenged and overcome via educational practices, policies, discourses, and approaches to inquiry.

Examining the interplay, then, among policy, practice, inquiry, public discourse and educational reform is central to students' preparation. Working within a wide array of methodological traditions, faculty members facilitate students' efforts to: 
  • Engage in a critical analysis of educational issues by considering power differentials, relationships, sociocultural contexts and outcomes, and issues of privilege, marginalization, and agency. 
  • Examine educational issues across micro, meso, and macro contexts, and in local, national, and international settings. 
  • Explore transformative possibilities for change and develop specific recommendations for educational improvement.
Additional Certificate and Endorsement Opportunities
Learning Experience Design Certificate

Requirements

The concentration offers flexibility in planning your doctoral study and supports transdisciplinary learning by encouraging election of University courses outside of Education. You might choose relevant courses in programs such as the Ross School of Business, the Ford School of Public Policy, the School of Social Work, the Institute for Social Research; also, in the philosophy, history, political science, sociology, anthropology, Afro-American and African Studies departments; and, in Latina/o Studies.

Total Credit Hours Required
60

Core credits

19

Students complete the following courses:

  • EDUC 790 – Foundations of Schooling (3 credits)
  • EDUC 791 – Foundations of Teaching & Learning (3 credits)
  • EDUC 792 – Methods of Educational Research: Qualitative (3 credits)
  • EDUC 793 – Introduction to Quantitative Methods in Educational Research (3 credits)
  • EDUC 898 – Professional Development Seminar (1 credit); need 4 credits total
  • An advanced research methods course (3 credits)

Concentration credits

15

Students choose from the following courses:

  • EDUC 641 – History of American Education (3 credits)
  • EDUC 642 – Philosophy and Politics of Education (3 credits)
  • EDUC 643 – Sociology of Education (3 credits)
  • EDUC 644 – Comparative and International Education (3 credits)
  • EDUC 645 – Education and Cultural Studies (3 credits)
  • EDUC 646 – Educational Policy Analysis (3 credits)
  • EDUC 768 – Economics and Education (3 credits)
  • EDUC 895 – Logic of Inquiry (3 credits)

Elective credits

12

EDUC 747 – Special Topics and EDUC 847 – Advanced Study courses may be student-initiated electives.

Cognate credits

6

Cognates are defined as graduate, non-Education courses. Cross-listed, meet-together courses with Education can be elected to fulfill the cognate requirement. With advisor approval, students may choose Higher Education courses.

Apprenticeship credits

2–6

Students complete a minimum of one and up to three credits in each of the following apprenticeships:

  • EDUC 789 – Research Apprenticeship
    • Graduate Student Research Assistant (GSRA) Position or Apprenticeship to Faculty Member
  • EDUC 798 – Teaching Apprenticeship
    • Graduate Student Instructor (GSI) Position or Apprenticeship to Faculty Member

Preliminary exam credits

2–6

Students complete a minimum of one and up to three credits in each of the following courses:

  • EDUC 991 – Prelims Part A (1 credit minimum) (may be elected more than once) 
  • EDUC 992 – Prelims Part B (1 credit minimum) (may be elected more than once)

Questions?

Questions?

Frequently Asked Questions

Prospective students

Prospective Students

2018 Ed Studies masters cohort poses in front of School of Education building
Discover more offerings from ES

Educational Studies

Associated Faculty

Associate Professor, School of Education; Associate Professor, Department of History, College of Literature, Science, and the Arts

734-615-0585

John Dewey Collegiate Professor of Education

734-647-2461

Arthur F Thurnau Professor; Professor of Education; Director, Wolverine Pathways

734-647-0606

University Diversity and Social Transformation Professor

(734) 647-2447

Connect with ES

Contact

Phone: (734) 763-9497
Master's: edstudiesma.info@umich.edu 
Doctoral: edstudiesphd.info@umich.edu  

Location

610 E. University Avenue
Room 4218
Ann Arbor, Michigan 48109-1259

Office Hours

Monday–Friday
8:00 a.m.–5:00 p.m.

Application Deadline

Educational Studies is suspending admissions to its PhD program for the fall of 2021. We are doing this to ensure that we can continue to provide the support needed by our current students at this uncertain time. However, we are engaged in an exciting redesign of our PhD program and look forward to welcoming your applications in the fall of 2021 for the fall of 2022. Please check in (at this site) for updates regarding our redesign efforts.

Quick Facts

GRE general exam required

Yes

Financial aid available

Yes

Applications for part time students

No

Starting term

Fall term only

Connect with ES

Contact

Phone: (734) 763-9497
Master's: edstudiesma.info@umich.edu 
Doctoral: edstudiesphd.info@umich.edu  

Location

610 E. University Avenue
Room 4218
Ann Arbor, Michigan 48109-1259

Office Hours

Monday–Friday
8:00 a.m.–5:00 p.m.

Careers

100%

of known graduates found full time employment in education

100%

of known graduates found employment within 12 months

$61K

average first year salary
Graduates typically go into these industries
  • Educational foundations and policy
  • Educational leadership
  • Mathematics education
  • Teaching and teacher education

 

Graduates often work as
  • Education Consultant
  • Director of Research
  • Professor
  • Research Design Specialist
  • Research Investigator
  • Research Specialist

Recent job titles include

  • Associate Director of Education Research
  • Chief of Research
  • Clinical Professor
  • Deputy Director
  • Director of Enrollment Research and Data Management
  • Director of Mathematics Learning Center
  • Instructional Consultant
  • Principal Researcher
  • Research Scientist

Internships

Although no internship is required, students must satisfy the apprenticeship requirement by completing a minimum of one and up to three credits in each of the following apprenticeships:

  • EDUC 789 – Research Apprenticeship
    • Graduate Student Instructor (GSI) Position or Apprenticeship to Faculty Member
  • EDUC 798 – Teaching Apprenticeship
    • Graduate Student Research Assistant (GSRA) Position or Apprenticeship to Faculty Member