College of Education Offers Rare Doctorate in Science

The program targets current teachers desiring to be a science educator, supervisor or a regional science coordinator.

Smith said Texas Tech is one of very few U.S. research universities that offer a blended delivery Ph.D. specializing in science education.

Smith said Texas Tech is one of very few U.S. research universities that offer a blended delivery Ph.D. specializing in science education.

Texas Tech’s College of Education recently unveiled a new doctoral option in Curriculum and Instruction with a specialization in science education – attainable mostly at a distance – that should appeal to location-locked education professionals.

“To the best of my knowledge, we are alone among research universities in the U.S. in offering a blended delivery Ph.D. that specializes in science education, not including mostly online schools like the University of Phoenix,” said Walter Smith, Helen DeVitt Jones Professor of Education.

The department is taking applications through the end of April; review of applicants will begin May 1, with coursework beginning in the fall 2012 semester.

“We are targeting people who want to be a science educator at the university level, a science supervisor for a school district, or a regional or state science coordinator,” Smith said. “Probably the majority of students will be from Texas because of the cost; half as much for Texas students as for out-of-state, but students can be from anywhere in the world, as long as they can get to the face-to-face meetings.”

Applicants are required to have a master’s in science education or a closely related field, and they must have three years’ experience teaching science in K-12 or in informal science, such as a zoo or museum.

Smith said everything is online except for two weeks on campus face-to-face each summer (2013, 2014 and 2015) and attendance each spring (2013, 2014 and 2015) at a three-day national conference of a professional association. Those are the National Science Teachers Association in April 2013, Association for Science Teacher Education in January 2014, and National Association for Research in Science Teaching on a date to be decided in 2015.

The program is designed to produce graduates who can make a difference in science education at the local, state, national or international level with skills attained for positions such as a science education researcher; school-based science education change agent; advocate for science education policy and practice; science teacher leader or global science educator.


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College of Education

The College of Education at Texas Tech University offers a full range of programs, including 9 doctoral degrees, 10 master's degrees, two bachelor's degrees and numerous specializations which can lead to careers in public or private education as teachers, professors, administrators, counselors and diagnosticians.

Programs in the college are housed in three departments.

The Department of Curriculum & Instruction offers advanced degrees that prepare leaders, researchers, and professors with the knowledge, skills, and practical application experience needed to analyze, construct, and evaluate curricula in ways that create optimal learning conditions for all learners. Language and literacy, bilingual education and STEM education are just a few of the specializations offered by C&I.

The Department of Educational Psychology & Leadership consists of a diverse group of academic programs that equip students with a comprehensive knowledge of learning, motivation, development, and educational foundations. The disciplines of counseling and school psychology are housed within the EP&L department as are programs to prepare future college administrators, primary and secondary school and district leaders, as well as practical and academic educational psychologists.

The Department of Teacher Education focuses solely on teacher preparation, ensuring that teacher candidates are ready for the classroom on day one. The Teacher Education Department is home to TechTeach, an innovative teacher preparation program that puts teacher candidates into public school classrooms for a full year and requires that students pass teacher certification tests prior to entering the classroom. Various paths to teaching careers, including fast-track distance programs statewide and alternative certification options, are also housed in this department.