Ideally located in the nation’s capital, the Doctoral Program in Curriculum and Instruction (C&I) prepares education leaders who will work to improve pre-K through 16+ education in local, national and international settings. The program encourages critical thought and creative work through coursework focusing on curriculum, instruction, research, and additional courses and learning opportunities that intentionally link teaching and learning, policy, and evaluation to students’ substantial prior experiences. C&I doctoral students have the opportunity to meet national leaders in education and participate in internships that expand horizons. Doctoral students often choose to contribute to our K-12 teacher-preparation programs through teaching and supervision opportunities.
The program focuses on understanding how curriculum and instruction can be constructed and applied to educational reform and diverse populations of students. Students work together to build research skills and study in a collaborative social context, grounded in the realities of schooling. There are close ties with faculty. Doctoral students will become part of a community that links scholars with practicing professionals, policy makers and educational organizations in Washington, DC and beyond. Students can also use the program expand their content knowledge or delve into other fields through linkages with GW's Columbian College of Arts and Sciences or other schools at GW.
Graduates of the program can be found working in government agencies, teaching in university settings, or running informal education organizations. They also may be curriculum supervisors in school systems or master teacher leaders in schools.
For more information, download the Curriculum & Instruction Handbook.
A minimum of 66 credits, including 18 credits of core courses, 6 credits of policy and evaluation courses, 15 credits in research, and 3 credits of internship, and 9 credits of electives.
CPED 6305 Foundations of Curriculum Theory
CPED 8325 Advanced Ideas in Curriculum Theory
CPED 8330 Paradigms of Instruction and Assessment
CPED 8331 Seminar in Instruction
CPED 8334 Seminar in Research in Curriculum and Instruction I
EDUC 8110 Advanced Study: Ideas, Issues, and Practices in Education
CPED 8354 Doctoral Internship: Teacher Education (taken for 3 credits)
CPED 8335 Seminar in Research in Curriculum and Instruction II
EDUC 6116 Introduction to Educational Statistics (Prerequisite)
EDUC 8120 Group Comparison Designs and Analyses
EDUC 8122 Qualitative Research Methods
6 credits from the following:
EDUC 8100 Experimental Courses
EDUC 8130 Survey Research Methods
EDUC 8131 Case Study Research Methods
EDUC 8140 Ethnographic Research Methods
EDUC 8142 Phenomenological Research Methods
EDUC 8170 Educational Measurement
EDUC 8171 Predictive Designs and Analyses
9 credits of electives selected in consultation with advisor
Approved dissertation proposal required
Successful completion of comprehensive exam required
Leading ideas in government, schools and think tanks. A few recent graduates include:
Dr. Carol O'Donnell, Ed.D. '12, A former public school teacher, Dr. O'Donnell now serves as a Group Leader in the Office of State Support at the US Department of Education in Washington, DC, coordinating the policy and financial resources associated with major grant programs that support States, districts, and schools as they implement programs and initiatives focused on education reform, school improvement, teacher quality, and improved student achievement.
Dr. Rob Ochsendorf, Ed.D. '09, Currently a program officer at the Institute of Education Sciences in Washington, DC Rob oversees research grants and helps develop national research priorities focused on math and science education for at risk learners. His experiences at GSEHD were invaluable in helping him develop a deep understanding of the qualities inherent in high quality education research.
Dr. Philip Bernhard, Ed.D. '12, Currently serving as an Assistant Professor of Secondary Education and Department Chair of Secondary Education, Educational Technology, and K-12 Education at the Metropolitan State University of Denver.
Dr. Jim Reese, Ed.D., '08, The director of studies at Washington International School, Dr. Reese oversees curriculum coordination and professional development of faculty. He also works closely with Project Zero, a research group at Harvard's Graduate School of Education. He credits two GSEHD programs, the M.Ed. in Secondary English and the Ed.D. in Curriculum and Instruction, for preparing him well for his career in education.
Dr. Lottie Baker, Ed.D. '13, Dr. baker coordinated an English language curriculum project for police academies in Southeast Asia through a U.S. State Department grant before joining the faculty at GSEHD in 2015.
Program Entry: Fall
*Additional application requirements may exist for international applicants
For more information on any of these requirements, please visit our Admissions page.
Current student Sarah Jennings (master's, international education), Dr. Laura Engel, and current student Beth Short (Ed.D., curriculum and instruction) presented a poster, Global Campaign for Urban Sustainability: Building K-12 Student Agency, Environmental Literacy, and Global Competencies Through Digital Storytelling, at the Service-Learning and Civic Engagement Conference at Towson University.