We offer a way to combine substantive interests in education with advanced instruction in research methods. We give students the skills needed to use sophisticated methods that shed light on policies, programs, and practices that aim to facilitate learning and mitigate educational inequality. You will learn not only how to apply a methodological approach, but to think deeply about when and why the approach is sensible given the context that motivated the need for research. Learning how to conduct high-quality research is just one piece of the puzzle; communicating your findings with clarity is another. Here, you will develop the ability to convey the results from complicated studies for both the public as well as academic peers.
A spirit of critical inquiry is a defining feature of our community. When claims are made—by students or faculty—it is expected that those claims will be supported by an empirical warrant. Our faculty strive to foster an environment that is at once challenging and supportive. During our weekly REM seminar, you have the opportunity to interact with invited speakers, discuss timely research, brainstorm ideas for papers, and practice giving presentations. Close contact between students and faculty is the rule, not the exception. We teach courses and mentor students with the same commitment and dedication that is evident in our scholarly research. You can expect to experience ongoing support as you embark on a path that begins with coursework, transitions to dissertation prospectus and defense, and culminates in a job that meshes with your career aspirations.
Our graduates find fulfilling careers in university teaching and research; research, evaluation, and testing in state departments of education and large school districts; research and policy analysis for think tanks like the RAND Corporation, SRI International, and federally funded regional research and development laboratories; measurement or statistical analysis for assessment and testing organizations such as the Educational Testing Service; and consultation for government and education agencies.