Graduate School of Education - George Mason University
Graduate School of Education - George Mason University

Our Graduate School of Education is the alma mater for one third of teachers and administrators in Northern Virginia’s world-class school systems. Each year, more than 3,000 graduate students enroll in our innovative academic programs, which include advanced study for teachers and school leaders, instructional design and technology, and a renowned PhD in Education program that is among the largest in the country.

School of Recreation, Health, and Tourism - George Mason University

The School of Recreation, Health, and Tourism (SRHT) offers exciting, career-ready majors in dynamic fields such as athletic training, tourism and events management, health and physical education, kinesiology, sport management, and recreation management. SRHT features renowned faculty, cutting-edge research, six laboratories and centers, and a diverse student body of more than 1,000 undergraduate and graduate students each year. Each major requires one or more internship or clinical experiences, ensuring that students graduate not just with a transcript but with a resume that demonstrates their professional aptitude and skills.

Education, PhD - Specialization in Higher Education

Our graduates have contributed to higher education literature through dissertations related to teaching and learning in their disciplines as well as to administrative and academic leadership research.

Program Structure

The program requires a minimum of 85 credits of study beyond the baccalaureate degree or a minimum of 55 credits beyond the master's degree. However, an individual's program typically requires 10 more credits depending on the person's goals, program requirements, and previous preparation. Students have five years to complete all course work and the portfolio reviews. Five additional years are allowed to complete the dissertation. Most students complete the entire program in five or six years.

Course Work

General Culture (3 credits)

Research Methods (15 credits)

Professional Specialization (24 credits)

Doctoral studies for the Higher Education specialization in the PhD in Education and Human Development program allows for flexible academic planning and research according to participants' interests, career goals, and learning format. Three courses are required. Students are also encouraged to take a three credit-hour internship and independent study.

Secondary Concentration Area (12 credits)

Students have a number of options for secondary concentrations including concentrations within the Graduate School of Education, within other George Mason University departments, interdisciplinary concentrations, or using the master's degree as part of the secondary concentration requirements.

Dissertation (12 credits)

Portfolio

Students complete an educational portfolio as part of the requirement of the PhD in Education and Human Development program. The portfolio is an organized, selective collection of documents designed to facilitate a student's academic and professional development, and to provide a basis for evaluation of degree progress. The portfolio represents the scope and depth of a student's goals, plans, and accomplishments in coursework, independent study, research, internships, and other advanced learning activities. The portfolio thus provides both a vehicle for self-reflection and a comprehensive record of a doctoral student's experiences and ongoing progress toward academic and professional goals.

Contact the PhD in Education and Human Development Program for additional information.