Clemson Graduate School

Clemson Graduate School

Engineering & Science Education

General Information

Degrees Offered

Introduction

The PhD program in Engineering & Science Education is a nationally-unique graduate program in science, technology, engineering, and mathematics (STEM) education research.  The Department of Engineering & Science Education (ESE) in the College of Engineering and Science at Clemson University is the only department in the country that includes both engineering education and science education in a College of Science/Engineering.  As such, it includes faculty who are experts in several areas of science education and engineering education, and have active research programs in these fields.  Students in this program will be exposed to a wide breadth of STEM education research under current investigation as well as be prepared to interface between the development of new theory in STEM education and the implementation of new research findings in practice. This discipline-based education research (DBER) combines knowledge of teaching and learning with deep knowledge of discipline-specific science content. It describes the discipline-specific difficulties learners face and the specialized intellectual and instructional resources that can facilitate student understanding. (See the Board of Science Education website  for more discussion of this topic.)

The objectives of the ESE PhD program are to prepare students for academic careers in STEM education, science education policy in higher education or informal education institutions, or a range of other careers that require a deep disciplinary knowledge coupled with understanding of the factors that affect student learning, retention, and inclusion in STEM. Students who enroll in this program will be expected to be content experts in a STEM discipline with at least a Master's degree in their content area of expertise. Graduates from this program will be prepared to become faculty in traditional departments of engineering or science, as well as STEM education departments. They will be prepared to lead curricular and pedagogical reform at the post-secondary level as well as conduct research in the burgeoning fields of STEM education research.

About the Program

For additional information, please contact the program coordinator (Geoff Potvin)

Application Requirements

Applying

All students admitted into the program must have at least a Bachelor of Science degree in a science, technology, engineering, and mathematics (STEM) discipline from a college or university that is acceptable to Clemson University, with preference being given to those who have completed graduate studies (masters level or higher) in a STEM discipline. Those who enter the program with a STEM Bachelor of Science degree must take 12 credit hours at the graduate level in a single STEM discipline (i.e., mechanical engineering, physics, chemistry, etc.). Thus, the program is designed for students who are content specialists in a STEM discipline who seek to pursue discipline-based education research. Students will be admitted into the PhD program in Engineering & Science Education in the fall, spring, and summer semesters.  

Required Documents

For additional information, please contact the program coordinator (Geoff Potvin)

Financial Aid

To see the proposed Graduate Tuition Rates for this academic year, click here.

The School or Program offers a number of graduate assistantships to students each year based on merit. These are offered in the form of stipends and the additional benefit of tuition remission. Students must be enrolled in a minimum of 9 credit hours per semester to qualify for a graduate assistantship and must work a minimum of 10 hours a week as a teaching or research assistant or perform other tasks assigned by the School or Program.

Current ESE faculty members have active research projects in the broad areas of chemistry, physics, mathematics and engineering education including, for example, assessment and improvement of problem solving, relationships between motivation and learning, student-centered learning environments, equity and gender issues in STEM disciplines, identity development, modeling of large-scale data, the graduate school experience, and students’ academic and career development and success. It is expected that each ESE doctoral student will choose a research project in conjunction with their faculty advisor in one of these or a similar area. Assistantships are stipends paid to graduate students to conduct research (research assistantship, or RA) or teach (teaching assistantship, or TA).  RA and TA positions are subject to availability of funds, and may be offered to selected full-time students upon acceptance into the Clemson University Graduate School.

Course of Study

Program of Study

Students in the ESE doctoral program will be exposed to the wide breadth of STEM education research under current investigation as well as be prepared to interface between the development of new theory in STEM education and the implementation of new research findings in practice. Students who enter the degree without a Master’s degree in a STEM discipline will take 12 hours of coursework in their discipline. All studens will take 12-14 hours of coursework in discipline-based education research courses.

Program Coordinator

Additional Contact

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