School of Education launches interdisciplinary PhD program

Full tuition, stipend offered to eight scholars in inaugural class

The Johns Hopkins University School of Education will launch a new full-time doctor of philosophy in education program in fall 2013, offering full tuition and a $25,000 annual stipend to eight of the PhD candidates in the inaugural class.

The university's goal is to prepare an exceptional core of interdisciplinary scholars who will address the policy and practice challenges associated with improving pre-K-12 learning outcomes in high-risk school communities, according to David Andrews, dean of the School of Education.

"We believe that a new approach to educational research is required to meet the educational challenges of the 21st century, in that research must help solve problems of practice and inform the policies needed to scale and support evidence-based practices," Andrews said. "Achieving this will require both an interdisciplinary approach and the integration of research, practice, and policy.

"Our PhD program examines the multiple and complex obstacles to improving student achievement by broadening the scope of what is typically thought to influence educational outcomes," Andrews added. "To this end, the program is designed to prepare top scholars in education research and policy who possess the analytical capabilities for identifying problems and crafting evidence based solutions beyond one academic discipline."

This unique program will draw upon intellectual resources from across the Johns Hopkins community and will provide an extraordinary learning environment that promotes multidisciplinary collaboration among students and leading scholars. Students will work on research teams at the School of Education's Center for Social Organization of Schools, Center for Research and Reform in Education, Center for Technology in Education, and with Success For All, the nationally acclaimed research-driven, whole-school reform model. In addition, the school has 20 joint faculty appointments with the university's schools of medicine, nursing, and public health.

The framework for the PhD program is focused on research methodology, core knowledge, and the dissemination and application of that knowledge to ensure candidates are equipped to assume roles as university faculty, researchers, or leaders in policy making. Typically, doctoral students at the School of Education complete three years of coursework and engage in one-year of independent study. The school will accept more students into the program for the fall, but only eight will be fully covered. The scholarship and stipend will support the inaugural class as well as future scholars.

Key to the program is the ability for students to plan their course of study based on their interests of finding solutions to pressing problems in education. In addition, students can enroll in courses across multiple disciplines and university divisions (education, arts and sciences, medicine, and public health) and work with leading educational reform researchers, including American Education Research Association (AERA) Fellows.

The School of Education will continue to offer its EdD program which is part-time and focuses on the preparation of education leaders who can apply evidence-based practices in educational settings.

The priority application deadline for the program is Monday, April 1; applications will continue to be accepted thereafter on a space-available basis until the program is filled. For more information or to participate in an online information session about the program, which is pending final approval from the Maryland Higher Education Commission, visit The online information session will take place from 7 to 8 p.m. on Wednesday, Feb. 13.

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