GSE Courses

Courses Overview

The Doctoral degree at the GSE is a very individualized program of study. It is designed by a student, in conjunction with his or her faculty advisor, based on the student’s research needs and interests. The Core requirements guide each student’s educational plan as established by the faculty of the program or concentration within the student’s Area, the faculty of the GSE, and the University.

Appropriate courses in other departments of the University (e.g., Anthropology, Linguistics, or Psychology), as well as courses within the GSE, may be used to fulfill GSE course requirements. Students must consult with their advisor when selecting courses outside the GSE to fulfill degree requirements.

Note: All units must be in courses at or above the 100-level in a degree-granting program in order to count toward the doctoral degree requirements in the GSE. The GSE expects students to take all of their courses at the 200 level or above (at least 50 percent of courses at the 200 level are required by the university). A limited number of 100-level courses may count with advisor and Area Committee approval. English for Foreign Students (ESFLANG 600 level) courses and Athletic (ATHLETIC) courses, e.g., social dance or yoga, do not count toward the doctoral degree requirements in the GSE.

Core Courses

The doctoral program consists of five groups of required courses:

  1. In the first year: Proseminar 1, 2, 3 (EDUC 325A, B, C) in Autumn, Spring and Winter.
  2. Autumn Quarter of the first year: EDUC 400A (formerly EDUC 200C), Introduction to Statistical Methods in Education.
  3. By the end of the second year: Research Methods Core:
    1. For students who entered in the fall of 2011 or earlier: EDUC 250A; for students who entered in the fall of 2012 or later: a research methods course chosen by the student in consultation with their advisor (course must be at least 3 units, be at or above the 200 level, and have a research methods focus)
    2. EDUC 400B (formerly EDUC 250B), Statistical Analysis in Education: Regression
    3. EDUC 450A (formerly EDUC 250C), Qualitative Analysis in Education
  4. Advanced Research Methods
  5. Area requirements or Area Core courses specific to a student’s Area and emphasis (e.g., Higher Education Administration).

With the exception of EDUC 325A, B and C, a student may use the same course to satisfy more than one of the above areas. For example, 400B counts toward Core requirements, and could possibly count toward an Area-specific requirement as well (see Area Course Requirements section below).

Research Methods Core

Doctoral students are required to complete a Research Methods Core within their first two years of the program.

Students who take 400B are responsible for having mastered the content of EDUC 400A. Students should consult with their advisors at the beginning of their first year about whether they need to take EDUC 400A to be adequately prepared for 400B.

Students are encouraged to complete the Research Methods Core as soon as possible because their Qualifying Paper, due at the end of the second year or sixth quarter, will depend upon methodology skills and expertise acquired in these courses.

Students who are interested in further methods course offerings may wish to explore the GSE Qualitative Course Guide and the GSE Quantitative Course Guide.

Area Requirements or Area Core Courses

Each of the School’s three program Areas (CTE, DAPS, and the subplans within SHIPS), as well as the cross-area specializations (LSTD and RILE) require specific courses, dependent upon a student’s emphasis or concentration. See the applicable Area sections in this Handbook for more details.

Course Waivers

In the GSE, students have the ability to request a course waiver exempting them from needing to take a required GSE methods or area course. These courses include the methods sequence: EDUC 400A (formerly EDUC 200C), EDUC 400B (formerly EDUC 250B), and EDUC 450A (formerly EDUC 250C); as well as required courses for a student's area or subplan (see that area/subplan's section of the handbook for course requirements). For methods courses, approval is required from the instructor of the course the student is waiving, and for area/subplan courses, approval is required from the advisor and area chair. Students are should obtain written confirmation from the required parties and submit it to the Director of Degree Programs. The same procedure should also be followed in cases where a student would like to substitute another course in place of an area or methods requirement.