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Program Equips Graduate Students With Advanced Research Skills

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Students interested in education research can hone their skills while expanding their career options through one of the College of Education’s newest programs, the Master of Science in Research Methods in Education in the Department of Educational Policy Studies and Evaluation.

The master’s degree program, which is available fully online, fully on campus, or as a mix, also includes a graduate certificate option, which provides a foundation of core research methods classes. This certificate can stand alone, be applied to the master’s degree program, or be incorporated into other master’s or doctoral degrees.

“Research methods has always been a core component of studies in Educational Policy Studies and Evaluation,” said Dr. Kelly Bradley, the program’s director. “Building on our success, we have developed a graduate certificate and master’s degree that allow students to obtain a strong foundation in applied research skills suited to a range of fields. Both allow graduates to expand career options and academic opportunities.”

The interdisciplinary curriculum crosses fields of study within education, drawing from perspectives in policy, sociology, psychology, pedagogy, and history. Students enrolled develop research knowledge and skills within a problem-of-practice framework, while learning to apply research methods, techniques, and constructs to real world education settings, issues, and data sets. Master’s degree students also complete a focused area of emphasis in quantitative methods, evaluation or research design.

Experience in research methods or education is not required. Instead, Bradley noted that program faculty are looking for applicants who desire to learn and apply research skills in an array of contexts. The GRE is optional, and applications are accepted and considered on a rolling basis year-round.

This program is designed for individuals seeking career advancement or a new career in areas including K-12 teaching, school and district leadership, higher education administration, state and federal agencies, healthcare, foundations, and others. Upon completion of the master’s degree program, students will be prepared to undertake commissioned research or evaluations, or progress to doctoral study.