Doctorate in Curriculum and Instruction

Make Discoveries That Matter
For Students, Teachers, Schools, and Society

Designed to meet the needs of working professionals, this Doctor of Education (EdD) in Curriculum and Instruction program focuses on cross-disciplinary research and reflective practices related to curriculum, teaching and learning, teacher education, and broader educational issues and policies.

Students explore cutting-edge education issues in formal and informal learning environments, such as museums.





Specialized Research Focus
Collaborate on a Research Practice Team and address pressing educational issues through hands-on research opportunities from the onset of the program.


Partnership Opportunities
Students become part of a community that links scholars with practicing professionals, policymakers, and educational organizations.


Share Your Voice
The research-active program offers publication and professional conference opportunities.




Only at GW

Education is the foundation for societal transformation. Where better to study and prepare to influence this transformation than in the heart of the nation’s capital at the George Washington University, alongside leading international education institutions and diverse school systems?





 Program at a Glance


Doctor of Education (EdD) in the Field of Curriculum and Instruction


Curriculum and Pedagogy

Course Delivery:

-Main Campus
-Virginia Academic Centers
-Hybrid (select research teams)

Program Entry:



Our Mission

The mission of our program is to:

  • Cultivate a vibrant and diverse community of education scholars.
  • Explore research and practice related to pressing issues in education.
  • Develop, study and share exciting innovations in curriculum, teaching, and learning.

The following requirements must be fulfilled: A minimum of 48 credits, successful completion of a master's comprehensive examination, and a doctoral dissertation. This includes the successful completion of an oral defense of the proposal and the completed dissertation.

View full requirements for the Doctor of Education programs >

CPED 8325 Curriculum Theory
CPED 8330 Foundations of Education Research in Curriculum and Instruction
CPED 8331 Seminar in Teaching
CPED 8334 Seminar in Learning
Doctoral Internship
CPED 8354 Doctoral Internship (taken for 6 to 9 credits)
Research Methods
EDUC 8120 Group Comparison Designs and Analyses *
EDUC 8122 Qualitative Research Methods
3 credits of Level B Research Methods coursework in consultation with advisor.
3 to 6 credits in elective courses selected in consultation with advisor.
Comprehensive Examination
Successful completion of a comprehensive examination is required.
CPED 8998 Doctoral Seminar in Curriculum and Instruction (taken for 3 credits)
CPED 8999 Dissertation Research (taken for a minimum of 12 credits to meet program requirements)
An approved dissertation proposal is required.

*Prerequisite statistics courses must be taken during the master's degree program or must be completed prior to taking required advanced courses. For students who have not had an introductory statistics course or do not feel confident in their understanding and application of basic statistical techniques (i.e., through one way analysis of variance), EDUC 6116 should be completed prior to enrolling in EDUC 8120.

Program Outcomes

This program prepares education leaders to apply knowledge of curriculum, teaching, learning, and research to transform practice.

Graduates will:

  • Be skilled in collaborating with schools, districts, and institutional partners to create innovative education activities;
  • Know how to design and conduct research to transform practice;
  • Demonstrate and facilitate professional learning in diverse settings.



 Research Practice Teams

Curriculum and Instruction EdD students are admitted to join a Research Practice Team based on their interests, experience, and career goals. Each team consists of a faculty advisor and doctoral students conducting research related to the team's focus. Applicants should identify which team they would like to be considered for in their statement of purpose. We are currently accepting applications to the following teams:

Supporting Students’ Evidence-based Thinking across the Curriculum

As social issues become more and more complex and increasingly entangle perspectives from science, mathematics, economics, politics, and history, it has never been more important to weigh and consider various sources of evidence when making personal, social, or policy decisions. But what counts as evidence? How can individuals use evidence to make compelling arguments and support their stance on an issue? These are questions that have relevance in current society and also within classrooms across the K-12 curriculum. The Evidence-based Thinking Research Practice Team (RPT) will explore:

  • How do students engage in evidence-based thinking within and across disciplines?
  • How do teachers build capacity in students’ evidence-based thinking skills?
  • How can we build teachers’ capacity to incorporate evidence-based thinking in their classrooms?
  • How can argument-driven instructional approaches support students’ evidence-based thinking?
  • What curricular implications are there for integrating argument-driven practices to support students’ evidence-based thinking?

The work of this RPT will prepare graduates to become educators with deep knowledge of the theory and research backing the design of learning environments and curricula that support students’ use of evidence within diverse disciplines and the associated instructional implications. Participants in the RPT will have the opportunity to collaborate with leading researchers and organizations specializing in supporting students’ evidence-based thinking and related teacher professional learning. The findings generated as part of this RPT will be shared broadly with schools and districts through the creation and dissemination of teacher resources and curriculum supports, publication in high-impact research and practitioner journals, as well as presentations in high visibility teacher and researcher conferences.


For more information, please contact Dr. Jonathon Grooms (

Data and Innovation

The overarching purpose of the Data and Innovation Research Practice Team is to increase fairness in college and career outcomes for all students. The team will bring together teachers, school leaders, counselors, and other education professionals to analyze large-scale data sets and create action plans in local schools. Questions the team may explore include:

  • What courses over time best support college vs. career attainment?
  • Is there a significant effect of school curricula on performance in college majors (e.g. Math, Science, English)?
  • Do qualities of schools (elementary, middle, high-school, community college, college) impact college and/or career outcomes?
  • What types of programs and interventions influence academic engagement and achievement?

A core objective of the team is to apply data science methods to build and refine multi-level longitudinal classification models to better understand pathways to majors and careers within the public-school system. Informed by the expertise of the team, variables from state and/or national data will be merged with local school system data to identify critical features predicting college and career outcomes for students. A second core objective is aimed at improving practice. The team will identify, develop, and study interventions relevant to the variables modeled that can improve engagement and learning in disciplinary pathways. Each team member will analyze model results in the context of a local school or system and apply personal expertise, results of prior research, and local knowledge to propose an intervention and evaluation plan. The third core objective is to engage in implementation and evaluation of approved interventions.

Doctoral students joining the team may work with the Virginia Longitudinal Data System (VLDS), the National Center for Educational Statistics High School Longitudinal Study (NCES-HLS), or an alternative large-scale data set appropriate to their school.

For more information, please contact Dr. Curtis Pyke (

Research of Informal Learning in the Arts and Humanities

Taking place among DC’s world-famous museums and performance spaces, this Research Practice Team (RPT) will engage with arts and humanities and its pedagogies to conduct research of informal learning experiences. A focus of the RPT is on interdisciplinary content and methods, creativity, and the integration of the arts and humanities with other ways and means of inquiry and formal education practices, such as those of PreK-12 schools. The team will explore:

  • What informal learning experiences and approaches do educators and students find to be the most novel and useful both in terms of their everyday lives and in relation to formal education?
  • How might museum and performance art experiences inspire visitors, audiences, and researchers to take social and political action?
  • What do we know and what needs to be developed in terms of arts and humanities integration with other content areas and research?
  • How might permanent and temporary public arts, performances, and humanities content and practices function as public pedagogy?

The RPT experiences will prepare graduates to apply knowledge of teaching, learning, and research in designing, analyzing, and assessing education programs and developing curriculum and instruction both in and out of schools. Individuals in PreK-12, museum education, social sciences, performing and visual arts, government, public administration, and non-profit organizations are encouraged to apply. The work of this RPT will be shared through international conferences and publications in high impact venues.

For more information, please contact Dr. Jonathan Eakle (

Professional Learning

This Research Practice Team (RPT) will provide students with experiences in how to design, implement, evaluate, and sustain effective educator professional learning in a variety of settings. The team’s research will focus on identifying crucial features and strategies of high impact, effective professional learning that supports both educator practice and student learning. Doctoral students on this team may explore questions such as:

  • What aspects of professional learning work, don’t work, and why?

  • What are the challenges to developing effective professional learning programs for educators?

  • What design features and related curriculum products effectively improve instructional practice and student outcomes across classrooms and contexts?

  • What design features are particularly effective in schools serving large concentrations of students living in poverty or from historically marginalized backgrounds?

  • How can professional learning most effectively support teaching for equity and justice?

  • What data are needed to correlate education professional learning with student outcomes?

Individuals in early childhood and K-12 education, museum and heritage site education, social sciences, and non-profit organizations are encouraged to apply. The work of this RPT will be shared through regional professional development networks, leading conferences, and publications in high-impact venues.

For more information, please contact Dr. Karen Kortecamp (

Reimagining Curriculum through the Humanities

Engaged with the field of curriculum studies, the Research Practice Team (RPT) will explore the significance of curriculum scholarship and its foundations in the humanities for the practice of education in schools and communities. Curriculum is widely understood as an institutional plan for education. The field of curriculum studies, however, calls for and fosters an understanding of curriculum as a complex human experience with subjective and social dimensions demanding elaboration and reconceptualization. Within this framework, using modes of interpretation and composition specific to the humanities, doctoral students in the RPT will reimagine curriculum and expand its significance, pursuing questions about curriculum in sites of educational practice relevant to their professional lives. The RPT supports doctoral students as they establish unique lines of inquiry into curriculum theory and educational practice, and it serves as a humanities-oriented educational community. Students contribute to the development of this scholarly community through the shared labor of study, writing, and conversation. Each student engages with humanities scholarship to enhance the understanding of curriculum as content, form, and place of human experience. The RPT will prepare graduates to research and develop curriculum through the purposes, frameworks, and methods of the humanities. Individuals in PreK-12 education, higher education, and community- based education with experience or interest in humanities scholarship (e.g., literary studies, psychoanalytic criticism, theories of race and gender, etc.) are encouraged to apply.

For more information, please contact Dr. Brian Casemore (



 Apply Now

GSEHD’s Office of Admissions invites you to apply for a spot in our program. Please review the following admission and financial information.

Ready to take the next step in your career? Review our step-by-step guide to applying to GSEHD >

To learn more about the program, admission process, and upcoming events, please connect with the GSEHD Admissions Team at or 202-994-9283.

Apply Now   Schedule Consultation with Admissions Counselor  

To be considered for admission, applicants must submit the online application form as well as the following required supporting documents. There is no application fee.

  • Prerequisite: Master's Degree
  • Resume
  • Transcripts from all previously attended colleges or universities
  • Statement of Purpose addressed to a specific Research Practice Team
  • 2 Letters of Recommendation, preferably one from a faculty member and the other from a professional supervisor
  • Interview with Faculty

*Additional application requirements may exist for international applicants.

View more details about requirements 

Applications are now being accepted for Fall 2024. We encourage you to apply as early as possible. 

Application Timeline Fall
Priority Deadline Nov 1
Round 1 Deadline Dec 15
Round 2 Deadline Jan 16
Round 3 Deadline March 1
Round 4 Deadline May 1
Round 5 Deadline June 15
Round 6 Deadline Aug 1


For more information or to inquire about the next admissions cycle, contact the GSEHD Admissions Team at or 202-994-9283.



 Tuition & Financial Aid

We know embarking upon graduate school is a big decision - due in part to the costs of attending. At GW, we understand the time and thought behind making graduate school work for you. Please take a moment to learn more about the options and opportunities available to help fund your graduate education.

Learn more about scholarships, grants & financial aid  

Graduate tuition is charged per credit hour, unless otherwise noted. Rates vary by program and location.

  • The tuition rate* for the On-Campus EdD in Curriculum and Instruction program is $1,870.
  • The tuition rate* for the Hybrid EdD in Curriculum and Instruction program is $1,205 per credit hour.
  • This program requires a minimum of 48 credits.

Please note: Additional fees may apply for international students, late fees, etc. Current tuition rates may be updated during the year.

*Summer 2023, Fall 2023 and Spring 2024

View the current fee chart   

Scholarships are available to eligible admitted students. Review eligibility requirements and learn more about funding your education >



William Zhou headshot
quotation mark

As an educator with extensive experience in schools, museums, non-profit organizations, and the private sector, pursuing my Doctor of Education at GW is an exciting opportunity for me to further advance my pedagogical expertise and prepare myself for addressing the current educational challenges of our era. As a member of the Informal Learning in the Arts Research Practice Team, I've had the opportunity to conduct research that was presented at top education conferences, including the 2023 American Educational Research Association annual meeting.

WILLIAM ZHOU (Current Student)



 Career Outlook

According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, employment in education, training, and library occupations is expected to grow faster than average from 2019-2029.1

1Bureau of Labor Statistics, U.S. Department of Labor, Occupational Outlook Handbook, [Education, Training, and Library Occupations], Retrieved September 2020 from

Curriculum & Instruction Career Opportunities
GSEHD faculty member speaks to auditorium class

Graduates may serve as:

  • Education Specialists
  • Museum Educators
  • Researchers
  • Clinical Faculty
Potential Employment Settings
male teacher in white lab coat conducts experiment with colored liquids and beakers while elementary students watch
  • Universities
  • Government Agencies
  • Education Organizations



Curriculum & Instruction (EdD) Faculty

Dr. Sylven Beck

Associate Professor, Curriculum and Pedagogy

(202) 994-9084
Dr. Brian Casemore

Associate Professor, Curriculum and Pedagogy

(202) 994-2011
Dr. Jonathan Eakle

Department Chair and Associate Professor, Curriculum and Pedagogy

(202) 994-6821
Dr. Colin Green

Associate Professor, Curriculum and Pedagogy

(202) 994-0997
Dr. Jonathon Grooms

Assistant Professor, Curriculum and Pedagogy; Co-Director, GWTeach

(202) 994-2007
Dr. Karen Kortecamp

Associate Professor, Curriculum and Pedagogy

(202) 994-1527
Dr. Curtis Pyke

Associate Professor, Curriculum and Pedagogy

(202) 994-4516
Dr. Tiffany-Rose Sikorski

Associate Professor, Curriculum and Pedagogy



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