The Mathematics and Science Education (MSE) Ph.D. program is designed to prepare graduates for positions in colleges and universities where they will conduct discipline-based education research and prepare America's next generation of K-12 mathematics and science teachers, as well as for leadership positions in a variety of educational settings. Concentrations for this interdisciplinary degree are offered in Biological Education, Chemical Education, Interdisciplinary Science Education, and Mathematics Education. Students have research opportunities for collaborative projects with faculty and for externally funded assistantships. Graduates are required to develop substantial content mastery of mathematics and/or science; demonstrate an understanding of educational theories, research methodologies, and best practices; and conduct discipline-based education research at the interface between the fields of education and mathematics or science. This program offers opportunities to improve the way K-16 science, technology, engineering, and mathematics (STEM) courses are taught.
Natasha Gerstenschlager (Ph.D., August 2015) helped develop active learning modules to be used in introductory statistics courses at MTSU through the MTStatPal project, funded by a National Science Foundation grant. Dr. Ginger Rowell served as faculty chair. Ten all-inclusive modules were created and tested for inexperienced teachers to teach activity-based lessons in their statistics classrooms. Gerstenschlager (B.S., M.S., Mathematics) also assisted with Dr. Angela Barlow’s Project IMPACT grant. She helped facilitate a two-week development professional workshop for 7th- and 8th-grade teachers in Barlow’s summer program, which supports K-8 math teachers transitioning to meet the expectations of the Tennessee State Standards. Gerstenschlager also joined Dr. Rongjin Huang's lesson study project, assisting with collecting and analyzing his data. “The program, the director, and faculty have all presented me with many opportunities to write manuscripts; present at regional, national, and international conferences; engage in scholarly research; and all while improving my knowledge of mathematics education,” she says.
Sandy Lampley, a middle and high school science teacher for 11 years, received one of the provost’s annual dissertation writing fellowships before earning her Ph.D. in August 2015. Her dissertation examined the potential that lesson study, a form of professional development successful in Japan’s K-12 education, holds for advancing graduate teaching assistants’ pedagogical content knowledge while teaching an introductory biology course. “GTAs at many universities are not offered any training in educational theories or strategies,” Lampley says. “For the biological sciences, this is concerning since such a high volume of laboratory classes are taught by GTAs.” Lampley, passionate about biology education, chose the doctoral program to increase her content knowledge and study new research about how students learn. “Although my students were making the necessary gains according to the required yearly standardized tests, I felt like there was more I could be doing to make their learning experiences more valuable, engaging, and relevant to their lives,” she says. Other dissertation writing fellowships for 2014-15 went to Jeff Bonner (active learning strategies in microbiology) and Teresa Schmidt (development of sixth-graders’ spatial visualization skills).
This program aims to produce college-level professors and researchers in mathematics and science education. It also helps prepare leaders in K-12 mathematics and science education whose jobs require them to perform, evaluate, and integrate the results of research in mathematics and science education into classrooms.
Our graduates have been employed by the following institutions:
MTSU’s College of Basic and Applied Sciences offers the Doctor of Philosophy (Ph.D.) in Mathematics and Science Education, an interdisciplinary program with concentrations in
All students in the Mathematics and Science Education Ph.D. program will be expected to meet the expectations of the residency requirement during their first year enrolled in the program at MTSU.
For unconditional admission, applicants must
Applicants holding only a baccalaureate degree will be expected to have earned an undergraduate degree in an area of mathematics or science and will be expected to earn a master's degree in Science, Mathematics, or Education as they complete the requirements of the Ph.D.
Applicants entering with a master's degree must have earned at least 24 semester hours of graduate mathematics, science, and/or education credit, corresponding to the concentration area that they select.
Admissions will be based on a comprehensive assessment of an applicant's qualifications including Graduate Record Examination (GRE) test scores, undergraduate and graduate grade point average, and letters of recommendation.
Applicants who do not meet these minimums but whose application materials indicate high potential for success may be admitted conditionally.
Doctoral candidates are required to
The application deadline is Feb. 15 for those wishing to be considered for graduate assistantships for the following fall. Late applications may be considered but financial support is not guaranteed.
For complete curriculum details, click on the REQUIREMENTS tab above.
Biological Education Chemical Education Interdisciplinary Science Education Mathematics Education
The Doctor of Philosophy (Ph.D.) in Mathematics and Science Education is an interdisciplinary program requiring students to (1) develop substantial content mastery of mathematics and/or science; (2) demonstrate an understanding of educational theories, research methodologies, and best practices; and (3) conduct discipline-based educational research at the interface between the fields of mathematics or science and education. This program aims to produce college-level professors and researchers to perform, evaluate, and integrate the results of research in mathematics and science education. It also seeks approaches to improve the way K-16 science, technology, engineering, and mathematics (STEM) courses are taught.
The goals of this program are to prepare students to
All students in the Mathematics and Science Education Ph.D. program will be expected to complete the residency requirement during the first year of enrollment in the program. Please see Residency Requirement (below) for more information.
Please see undergraduate catalog for information regarding undergraduate programs.
Admission to the Ph.D. in Mathematics and Science Education with a concentration in Biological Education is based on a comprehensive assessment of a candidate’s qualifications including Graduate Record Examination (GRE) scores, undergraduate and graduate grade point average, and letters of recommendation.
Admission requires
Applicants must submit all application materials to the College of Graduate Studies.
Application deadline: February 15 for those wishing to be considered for graduate assistantships for the following Fall. Late applications may be considered, but financial support in the form of an assistantship is not guaranteed.
Applicant must
NOTE: International students must also meet the College of Graduate Studies requirement for proof of English language proficiency. This may be accomplished by submission of TOEFL, UMELI test, or IELTS scores that meet the college's requirements or by successful completion of level 112 of ELS coursework.
Applicants who do not meet these minimums but whose application materials indicate high potential for success may be admitted conditionally. Such students must meet the conditions of their admission in the time stated to remain in the program of study.
Once admitted to the program, each candidate must
During the residency year, students are expected to complete at least 18 hours of coursework that apply directly to the degree. Of these 18 hours, 14 hours of coursework are required.
Fall Semester(5 hours)
Spring Semester(6 hours)
Summer (3 hours)
In addition, during the residency year, students are expected to complete each of the following:
All Ph.D. candidates must complete 75 hours in the following course of study:
3 credit hours
Prerequisite: Permission of department. Admission based on recommendations and performance in teaching. Offered every term.
1 credit hours
Prerequisite: Must be currently enrolled in the Mathematics and Science Education Ph.D. program. Required of graduate students specializing in mathematics and science education. Involves presentations on current issues, related research, and policy developments in mathematics and science education. May be repeated.
2 credit hours
Focuses on the Nature of Mathematics (NOM) and the Nature of Science (NOS). Attention given to how the fields of mathematics, biology, and chemistry practiced as well as scientific inquiry, mathematical, practices, conceptions of NOS and NOM, and pedagogical considerations.
2 credit hours
Focuses on the knowledge required to be an effective teacher. Attention given to teacher knowledge constructs and the recognition of one's self as a mentor and teacher educator in formal and informal contexts.
3 credit hours
Focus on theoretical and practical issues regarding how students learn mathematics and science, best practices for teaching mathematics and science topics, and issues from current literature on the teaching and learning of mathematics and science.
3 credit hours
Topic-oriented overview of cognitive psychology. Models of attention, perception, memory, language, reasoning, problem solving, and decision making. Issues in cognitive development and cognitive neuropsychology.
3 credit hours
Prerequisite: PSY 3020 or equivalent or admission to Psychology graduate program. Corequisite: PSY 7281. Survey of theoretical and practical aspects of multiple regression as typically used by psychologists. Simple and multiple regression through model comparison approach in the general linear model paradigm. Laboratory included.
0 credit hours
Corequisite: PSY 7280.
3 credit hours
Prerequisite: PSY 3020 or equivalent or admission to Psychology graduate program. Corequisite: PSY 7291. Review of basic statistics. Scientific quantification, research design, and statistical analysis from the perspective of analysis of variance: one-way, factorial, repeated measures, and mixed designs. Laboratory included.
0 credit hours
Corequisite: PSY 7290.
3 credit hours
Designing research studies, including development of understandings, as well as skills and techniques needed in gathering, structuring, interpreting and presenting data required for educational research. SPSE 7010 is a prerequisite for enrollment in FOED 7610, which is recommended to be taken the following semester.
3 credit hours
Examines the historical and current learning theoretical principles, concepts, and research findings as related to education in a variety of settings. Focuses on cognitive, behavioral, constructivist, and humanistic learning theorists, theories and applications.
3 credit hours
Theoretical factors, methodological approaches, and frameworks related to evaluating and conducting qualitative research. Students required to identify specific problems and apply qualitative concepts and procedures related to classroom practice.
3 credit hours
Advanced teaching strategies using technology with online instruction, distance learning tools, computer simulations, applets, webpage construction, presentation software, streaming-videos and multimedia applications. Explores how technology tools support teaching and research in both K-12 and college level learning environments.
*Students are required to take this course at least twice before candidacy.
3 credit hours
Prerequisite: BIOL 3250/3251. Mutation, natural selection, adaptation, isolating mechanisms, genetic drift, hybridization, ploidy in the process of species formation, and a history of the development and ideas of evolution. Two lectures.
4 credit hours
Prerequisite: BIOL 3400/3401. Measuring biodiversity: species, ecosystem, and genetic diversity. Topics include conservation ethics, extinctions, habitat degradation, exotic species, and management of populations and ecosystems. Six hours lecture/laboratory.
3 credit hours
Prerequisite: Permission of instructor. Overview of biology education with an emphasis on how students learn biology and current best practices for teaching biological concepts. Primary literature of the field featured as course emerges through lectures, discussion, small group activities, and group/individual presentations. Capstone experience will be student's development of an instructional unit of study including the formal teaching of selected biological concepts. Three hours lecture/discussion.
4 credit hours
Prerequisites: BIOL 2230/2231 and 3250/3251; CHEM 1110/1111 and 1120/1121. Recent advancements in microbial genetics and gene manipulation with emphasis on applications of molecular genetics, including gene regulation and recombinant DNA technology. Six hours lecture/laboratory.
4 credit hours
Prerequisites: BIOL 1110/1111 and 1120/1121 and CSCI 1170 or consent of instructor. Explores the emerging field of bioinformatics which involves the application of computer science to biological questions. Bioinformatics applies to the computational aspects of data gathering, processing, storage, analysis, and visualization methods used in revising and testing biological hypotheses. Student should have a strong background in either computer science or biology, be willing to learn about the other field in an accelerated fashion, and be willing to work cooperatively as part of an interdisciplinary team. Four hours of lecture/problem solving per week.
In consultation with his or her major advisor and dissertation committee, each student will choose 11-12 credit hours from courses in the College of Basic and Applied Sciences and the College of Education at the 6000 or 7000 level.
Students in the Biological Education concentration should select their electives to ensure that they have completed at least 21 hours of coursework with a BIOL rubric.
1 to 6 credit hours
Selection of a research problem, review of pertinent literature, collection and analysis of data, and composition of the dissertation. Once enrolled, students must register for at least one credit hour of dissertation research each semester until completion. S/U grading.
Candidate must
The Doctor of Philosophy (Ph.D.) in Mathematics and Science Education is an interdisciplinary program requiring students to (1) develop substantial content mastery of mathematics and/or science; (2) demonstrate an understanding of educational theories, research methodologies, and best practices; and (3) conduct discipline-based educational research at the interface between the fields of mathematics or science and education. This program aims to produce college-level professors and researchers to perform, evaluate, and integrate the results of research in mathematics and science education. It also seeks approaches to improve the way K-16 science, technology, engineering, and mathematics (STEM) courses are taught.
The goals of this program are to prepare students to
All students in the Mathematics and Science Education Ph.D. program will be expected to complete the residency requirement during the first year of enrollment in the program. Please see Residency Requirement (below) for more information.
Please see undergraduate catalog for information regarding undergraduate programs.
Admission to the Ph.D. in Mathematics and Science Education with a concentration in Chemical Education is based on a comprehensive assessment of a candidate’s qualifications including Graduate Record Examination (GRE) scores, undergraduate and graduate grade point average, and letters of recommendation.
Admission requires
Applicants must submit all application materials to the College of Graduate Studies.
Application deadline: February 15 for those wishing to be considered for graduate assistantships for the following Fall. Late applications may be considered, but financial support in the form of an assistantship is not guaranteed.
Applicant must
NOTE: International students must also meet the College of Graduate Studies requirement for proof of English language proficiency. This may be accomplished by submission of TOEFL, UMELI test, or IELTS scores that meet the college's requirements or by successful completion of level 112 of ELS coursework.
Applicants who do not meet these minimums but whose application materials indicate high potential for success may be admitted conditionally. Such students must meet the conditions of their admission in the time stated to remain in the program of study.
Once admitted to the program, each candidate must
During the residency year, students are expected to complete at least 18 hours of coursework that apply directly to the degree. Of these 18 hours, 14 hours of coursework are required.
Fall Semester(5 hours)
Spring Semester(6 hours)
Summer (3 hours)
In addition, during the residency year, students are expected to complete each of the following:
All Ph.D. candidates must complete 75 hours in the following course of study:
3 credit hours
Prerequisite: Permission of department. Admission based on recommendations and performance in teaching. Offered every term.
1 credit hours
Prerequisite: Must be currently enrolled in the Mathematics and Science Education Ph.D. program. Required of graduate students specializing in mathematics and science education. Involves presentations on current issues, related research, and policy developments in mathematics and science education. May be repeated.
2 credit hours
Focuses on the Nature of Mathematics (NOM) and the Nature of Science (NOS). Attention given to how the fields of mathematics, biology, and chemistry practiced as well as scientific inquiry, mathematical, practices, conceptions of NOS and NOM, and pedagogical considerations.
2 credit hours
Focuses on the knowledge required to be an effective teacher. Attention given to teacher knowledge constructs and the recognition of one's self as a mentor and teacher educator in formal and informal contexts.
3 credit hours
Focus on theoretical and practical issues regarding how students learn mathematics and science, best practices for teaching mathematics and science topics, and issues from current literature on the teaching and learning of mathematics and science.
3 credit hours
Topic-oriented overview of cognitive psychology. Models of attention, perception, memory, language, reasoning, problem solving, and decision making. Issues in cognitive development and cognitive neuropsychology.
3 credit hours
Prerequisite: PSY 3020 or equivalent or admission to Psychology graduate program. Corequisite: PSY 7281. Survey of theoretical and practical aspects of multiple regression as typically used by psychologists. Simple and multiple regression through model comparison approach in the general linear model paradigm. Laboratory included.
0 credit hours
Corequisite: PSY 7280.
3 credit hours
Prerequisite: PSY 3020 or equivalent or admission to Psychology graduate program. Corequisite: PSY 7291. Review of basic statistics. Scientific quantification, research design, and statistical analysis from the perspective of analysis of variance: one-way, factorial, repeated measures, and mixed designs. Laboratory included.
0 credit hours
Corequisite: PSY 7290.
3 credit hours
Designing research studies, including development of understandings, as well as skills and techniques needed in gathering, structuring, interpreting and presenting data required for educational research. SPSE 7010 is a prerequisite for enrollment in FOED 7610, which is recommended to be taken the following semester.
3 credit hours
Examines the historical and current learning theoretical principles, concepts, and research findings as related to education in a variety of settings. Focuses on cognitive, behavioral, constructivist, and humanistic learning theorists, theories and applications.
3 credit hours
Theoretical factors, methodological approaches, and frameworks related to evaluating and conducting qualitative research. Students required to identify specific problems and apply qualitative concepts and procedures related to classroom practice.
3 credit hours
Advanced teaching strategies using technology with online instruction, distance learning tools, computer simulations, applets, webpage construction, presentation software, streaming-videos and multimedia applications. Explores how technology tools support teaching and research in both K-12 and college level learning environments.
* Students are required to take this course at least twice before candidacy.
3 credit hours
Prerequisite: CHEM 3020/3021 or 2030/2031 or equivalent. Concepts and modern theories of organic chemistry: stereochemistry of reactions, mechanistic interpretation of organic reactions, and multistep synthesis. Offered every fall.
NOTE: Graduate standing is the prerequisite for graduate courses in chemistry. The 5000-level courses also have the same prerequisites as listed for the corresponding 4000-level courses in the undergraduate catalog.
4 credit hours
Prerequisite: CHEM 2230/2231 or equivalent. Selected instrumental methods of analysis including but not limited to gas and liquid chromatography methods; ultraviolet, visible, and infrared spectroscopic methods; and flame emission and atomic absorption spectrometry. Three lectures and one three-hour laboratory period. Offered every spring.
NOTE: Graduate standing is the prerequisite for graduate courses in chemistry. The 5000-level courses also have the same prerequisites as listed for the corresponding 4000-level courses in the undergraduate catalog.
3 credit hours
Key concepts from classical thermodynamics, quantum theory, and chemically relevant spectroscopies. Statistical thermodynamics introduced. Offered every spring.
NOTE: Graduate standing is the prerequisite for graduate courses in chemistry. The 5000-level courses also have the same prerequisites as listed for the corresponding 4000-level courses in the undergraduate catalog.
3 credit hours
Concepts of inorganic chemistry needed for effective teaching of general chemistry and for safe and effective use of inorganic chemicals and materials in industrial and academic laboratories; atomic theory, principles of inorganic reactivity in acid-base; precipitation, complexation, and oxidation-reduction reactions; crystal and ligand field theory; symmetry; molecular orbital theory; organometallic chemistry. Offered every fall.
NOTE: Graduate standing is the prerequisite for graduate courses in chemistry. The 5000-level courses also have the same prerequisites as listed for the corresponding 4000-level courses in the undergraduate catalog.
3 credit hours
Chemical properties of biological molecules such as proteins, lipids, nucleotides, and carbohydrates. Chemical basis of enzyme catalysis. Structure of biological membranes. Offered every fall.
NOTE: Graduate standing is the prerequisite for graduate courses in chemistry. The 5000-level courses also have the same prerequisites as listed for the corresponding 4000-level courses in the undergraduate catalog.
3 credit hours
Areas and ideas associated with chemical education. Readings from the current literature or seminal texts on misconceptions in chemistry, theories of learning, and theories of teaching. Offered summer only.
NOTE: Graduate standing is the prerequisite for graduate courses in chemistry. The 5000-level courses also have the same prerequisites as listed for the corresponding 4000-level courses in the undergraduate catalog.
In consultation with his or her major advisor and dissertation committee, each student will choose 11-12 credit hours from courses in the College of Basic and Applied Sciences and the College of Education at the 6000 or 7000 level.
Students in the Chemical Education concentration should select their electives to ensure that they have completed at least 21 hours with a CHEM rubric.
1 to 6 credit hours
Selection of a research problem, review of pertinent literature, collection and analysis of data, and composition of the dissertation. Once enrolled, students must register for at least one credit hour of dissertation research each semester until completion. S/U grading.
Candidate must
The Doctor of Philosophy (Ph.D.) in Mathematics and Science Education is an interdisciplinary program requiring students to (1) develop substantial content mastery of mathematics and/or science; (2) demonstrate an understanding of educational theories, research methodologies, and best practices; and (3) conduct discipline-based educational research at the interface between the fields of mathematics or science and education. This program aims to produce college-level professors and researchers to perform, evaluate, and integrate the results of research in mathematics and science education. It also seeks approaches to improve the way K-16 science, technology, engineering, and mathematics (STEM) courses are taught.
The goals of this program are to prepare students to
All students in the Mathematics and Science Education Ph.D. program will be expected to complete the residency requirement during the first year of enrollment in the program. Please see Residency Requirement (below) for more information.
Please see undergraduate catalog for information regarding undergraduate programs.
Admission to the Ph.D. in Mathematics and Science Education with a concentration in Interdisciplinary Science Education is based on a comprehensive assessment of a candidate’s qualifications including Graduate Record Examination (GRE) scores, undergraduate and graduate grade point average, and letters of recommendation.
Admission requires
Applicants must submit all application materials to the College of Graduate Studies.
Application deadline: February 15 for those wishing to be considered for graduate assistantships for the following Fall. Late applications may be considered, but financial support in the form of an assistantship is not guaranteed.
Applicant must
NOTE: International students must also meet the College of Graduate Studies requirement for proof of English language proficiency. This may be accomplished by submission of TOEFL, UMELI test, or IELTS scores that meet the college's requirements or by successful completion of level 112 of ELS coursework.
Applicants who do not meet these minimums but whose application materials indicate high potential for success may be admitted conditionally. Such students must meet the conditions of their admission in the time stated to remain in the program of study.
Once admitted to the program, each candidate must
During the residency year, students are expected to complete at least 18 hours of coursework that apply directly to the degree. Of these 18 hours, 14 hours of coursework are required.
Fall Semester(5 hours)
Spring Semester(6 hours)
Summer (3 hours)
In addition, during the residency year, students are expected to complete each of the following:
All Ph.D. candidates must complete 75 hours in the following course of study:
3 credit hours
Prerequisite: Permission of department. Admission based on recommendations and performance in teaching. Offered every term.
1 credit hours
Prerequisite: Must be currently enrolled in the Mathematics and Science Education Ph.D. program. Required of graduate students specializing in mathematics and science education. Involves presentations on current issues, related research, and policy developments in mathematics and science education. May be repeated.
2 credit hours
Focuses on the Nature of Mathematics (NOM) and the Nature of Science (NOS). Attention given to how the fields of mathematics, biology, and chemistry practiced as well as scientific inquiry, mathematical, practices, conceptions of NOS and NOM, and pedagogical considerations.
2 credit hours
Focuses on the knowledge required to be an effective teacher. Attention given to teacher knowledge constructs and the recognition of one's self as a mentor and teacher educator in formal and informal contexts.
3 credit hours
Focus on theoretical and practical issues regarding how students learn mathematics and science, best practices for teaching mathematics and science topics, and issues from current literature on the teaching and learning of mathematics and science.
3 credit hours
Topic-oriented overview of cognitive psychology. Models of attention, perception, memory, language, reasoning, problem solving, and decision making. Issues in cognitive development and cognitive neuropsychology.
3 credit hours
Prerequisite: PSY 3020 or equivalent or admission to Psychology graduate program. Corequisite: PSY 7281. Survey of theoretical and practical aspects of multiple regression as typically used by psychologists. Simple and multiple regression through model comparison approach in the general linear model paradigm. Laboratory included.
0 credit hours
Corequisite: PSY 7280.
3 credit hours
Prerequisite: PSY 3020 or equivalent or admission to Psychology graduate program. Corequisite: PSY 7291. Review of basic statistics. Scientific quantification, research design, and statistical analysis from the perspective of analysis of variance: one-way, factorial, repeated measures, and mixed designs. Laboratory included.
0 credit hours
Corequisite: PSY 7290.
3 credit hours
Designing research studies, including development of understandings, as well as skills and techniques needed in gathering, structuring, interpreting and presenting data required for educational research. SPSE 7010 is a prerequisite for enrollment in FOED 7610, which is recommended to be taken the following semester.
3 credit hours
Examines the historical and current learning theoretical principles, concepts, and research findings as related to education in a variety of settings. Focuses on cognitive, behavioral, constructivist, and humanistic learning theorists, theories and applications.
3 credit hours
Theoretical factors, methodological approaches, and frameworks related to evaluating and conducting qualitative research. Students required to identify specific problems and apply qualitative concepts and procedures related to classroom practice.
3 credit hours
Advanced teaching strategies using technology with online instruction, distance learning tools, computer simulations, applets, webpage construction, presentation software, streaming-videos and multimedia applications. Explores how technology tools support teaching and research in both K-12 and college level learning environments.
*Students are required to take this course at least twice before candidacy.
Students who choose this concentration must select at least 18 hours (in consultation with their major advisors and dissertation committee) from the courses listed in the Biological Education, Chemical Education, and Mathematics Education concentrations in Mathematics and Science Education or from the courses listed below:
3 credit hours
Prerequisite: Permission of instructor and one undergraduate biology course. Uses a process-oriented approach to the study of life science with emphasis on execution and analysis of content-based activities and experiments suited to actual classroom situations. (May not be used for biology majors or minors.)
3 credit hours
Mathematics as problem solving, communication, and reasoning. Connecting different fields of mathematics. Topics include number and number relationships, number systems and number theory, computation and estimation, patterns and functions, statistics and probability, algebra, geometry, measurement.
3 credit hours
Prerequisite: Permission of instructor. Review and extension of algebraic skills and concepts as they relate to the teaching and learning of algebra. Focus on algebraic thinking and problem solving, algebraic systems, functions, graphing, and linear algebra.
3 credit hours
Prerequisite: Permission of instructor. Investigations into the foundations of plane, solid, and coordinate geometry, motion geometry, similarities and congruencies, measurement and the application of geometry. Instruction will model the suggested pedagogy appropriate for school mathematics.
3 credit hours
Prerequisite: Permission of instructor. Relation to school mathematics. Development of central tendency and variation, concepts of chance including sample space, randomness, conditional probability, and independence.
3 credit hours
Focus on theoretical and practical issues regarding how students learn mathematics and science, best practices for teaching mathematics and science topics, and issues from current literature on the teaching and learning of mathematics and science.
1 to 3 credit hours
Prerequisite: Graduate standing or consent of instructor. Topics from astronomy to chemistry and physics, with special emphasis on the development of hands-on activities, determination of content cognitive demand, development of appropriate assessment instruments/implementation plans, and implementation of these across the pre-college curriculum. For practicing pre-college science teachers and school administrators. Consult the listed instructor for costs and specific credits. Does not apply toward chemistry graduate degrees. Offered on sufficient demand. May be repeated for a total of six credits with departmental approval. Repeatable for up to six credit hours.
3 credit hours
Prerequisite: PSY 6280 or equivalent. Advanced topics in quantitative psychology. Focus on current topics, recent issues, and less traditional areas of quantitative psychology. Relevant computer programs. May be repeated for a total of six credits.
3 credit hours
Prerequisites: PSY 6280, HHP 6700, or equivalent. Structural equation modeling. Review of correlation, multiple regression and path analysis. Conceptual review of measurement models. Model specification, estimation, goodness of fit, and power of structural equation models. Relevant computer programs.
3 credit hours
Prerequisites: PSY 6280, HHP 6700, or equivalent. Classical test theory and item response theory. Model, assumptions, and problems of classical test theory. Mathematical modeling, parameter estimating, and adaptive testing procedures using item response theory. Both theories utilized for test construction.
3 credit hours
Prerequisites: PSY 6280, HHP 6700, or equivalent. Surveys each of the major multivariate data analysis techniques, with main focus on their application. Nature, power, procedure, computer programming, interpretation, and limitations of each.
3 credit hours
Selected concepts and theories within the physical sciences of astronomy, chemistry, geology, and physics such as the solar system and the Earth, physical and chemical changes, chemical bonding, acids and bases, rocks and minerals, density, kinematics, electricity, and magnetism. Particular emphasis placed on developing strong content and pedagogical content knowledge in these areas.
3 credit hours
Prerequisite: Permission of instructor. Overview of biology education with an emphasis on how students learn biology and current best practices for teaching biological concepts. Primary literature of the field featured as course emerges through lectures, discussion, small group activities, and group/individual presentations. Capstone experience will be student's development of an instructional unit of study including the formal teaching of selected biological concepts. Three hours lecture/discussion.
3 credit hours
Areas and ideas associated with chemical education. Readings from the current literature or seminal texts on misconceptions in chemistry, theories of learning, and theories of teaching. Offered summer only.
NOTE: Graduate standing is the prerequisite for graduate courses in chemistry. The 5000-level courses also have the same prerequisites as listed for the corresponding 4000-level courses in the undergraduate catalog.
3 credit hours
Focus on theoretical and practical issues regarding how students learn mathematics, best practices for teaching mathematics, and issues from current literature on the teaching and learning of mathematics.
In consultation with his or her major advisor and dissertation committee, each student will choose 11-12 credit hours from courses in the College of Basic and Applied Sciences and the College of Education at the 6000 or 7000 level.
1 to 6 credit hours
Selection of a research problem, review of pertinent literature, collection and analysis of data, and composition of the dissertation. Once enrolled, students must register for at least one credit hour of dissertation research each semester until completion. S/U grading.
Candidate must
The Doctor of Philosophy (Ph.D.) in Mathematics and Science Education is an interdisciplinary program requiring students to (1) develop substantial content mastery of mathematics and/or science; (2) demonstrate an understanding of educational theories, research methodologies, and best practices; and (3) conduct discipline-based educational research at the interface between the fields of mathematics or science and education. This program aims to produce college-level professors and researchers to perform, evaluate, and integrate the results of research in mathematics and science education. It also seeks approaches to improve the way K-16 science, technology, engineering, and mathematics (STEM) courses are taught.
The goals of this program are to prepare students to
All students in the Mathematics and Science Education Ph.D. program will be expected to complete the residency requirement during the first year of enrollment in the program. Please see Residency Requirement (below) for more information.
Please see undergraduate catalog for information regarding undergraduate programs.
Admission to the Ph.D. in Mathematics and Science Education with a concentration in Mathematics Education is based on a comprehensive assessment of a candidate’s qualifications including Graduate Record Examination (GRE) scores, undergraduate and graduate grade point average, and letters of recommendation.
Admission requires
Applicants must submit all application materials to the College of Graduate Studies.
Application deadline: February 15 for those wishing to be considered for graduate assistantships for the following Fall. Late applications may be considered, but financial support in the form of an assistantship is not guaranteed.
Applicant must
NOTE: International students must also meet the College of Graduate Studies requirement for proof of English language proficiency. This may be accomplished by submission of TOEFL, UMELI test, or IELTS scores that meet the college's requirements or by successful completion of level 112 of ELS coursework.
Applicants who do not meet these minimums but whose application materials indicate high potential for success may be admitted conditionally. Such students must meet the conditions of their admission in the time stated to remain in the program of study.
Once admitted to the program, each candidate must
During the residency year, students are expected to complete at least 18 hours of coursework that apply directly to the degree. Of these 18 hours, 14 hours of coursework are required.
Fall Semester(5 hours)
Spring Semester(6 hours)
Summer (3 hours)
In addition, during the residency year, students are expected to complete each of the following:
All Ph.D. candidates must complete 75 hours in the following course of study:
3 credit hours
Prerequisite: Permission of department. Admission based on recommendations and performance in teaching. Offered every term.
1 credit hours
Prerequisite: Must be currently enrolled in the Mathematics and Science Education Ph.D. program. Required of graduate students specializing in mathematics and science education. Involves presentations on current issues, related research, and policy developments in mathematics and science education. May be repeated.
2 credit hours
Focuses on the Nature of Mathematics (NOM) and the Nature of Science (NOS). Attention given to how the fields of mathematics, biology, and chemistry practiced as well as scientific inquiry, mathematical, practices, conceptions of NOS and NOM, and pedagogical considerations.
2 credit hours
Focuses on the knowledge required to be an effective teacher. Attention given to teacher knowledge constructs and the recognition of one's self as a mentor and teacher educator in formal and informal contexts.
3 credit hours
Focus on theoretical and practical issues regarding how students learn mathematics and science, best practices for teaching mathematics and science topics, and issues from current literature on the teaching and learning of mathematics and science.
3 credit hours
Topic-oriented overview of cognitive psychology. Models of attention, perception, memory, language, reasoning, problem solving, and decision making. Issues in cognitive development and cognitive neuropsychology.
3 credit hours
Prerequisite: PSY 3020 or equivalent or admission to Psychology graduate program. Corequisite: PSY 7281. Survey of theoretical and practical aspects of multiple regression as typically used by psychologists. Simple and multiple regression through model comparison approach in the general linear model paradigm. Laboratory included.
0 credit hours
Corequisite: PSY 7280.
3 credit hours
Prerequisite: PSY 3020 or equivalent or admission to Psychology graduate program. Corequisite: PSY 7291. Review of basic statistics. Scientific quantification, research design, and statistical analysis from the perspective of analysis of variance: one-way, factorial, repeated measures, and mixed designs. Laboratory included.
0 credit hours
Corequisite: PSY 7290.
3 credit hours
Designing research studies, including development of understandings, as well as skills and techniques needed in gathering, structuring, interpreting and presenting data required for educational research. SPSE 7010 is a prerequisite for enrollment in FOED 7610, which is recommended to be taken the following semester.
3 credit hours
Examines the historical and current learning theoretical principles, concepts, and research findings as related to education in a variety of settings. Focuses on cognitive, behavioral, constructivist, and humanistic learning theorists, theories and applications.
3 credit hours
Theoretical factors, methodological approaches, and frameworks related to evaluating and conducting qualitative research. Students required to identify specific problems and apply qualitative concepts and procedures related to classroom practice.
3 credit hours
Advanced teaching strategies using technology with online instruction, distance learning tools, computer simulations, applets, webpage construction, presentation software, streaming-videos and multimedia applications. Explores how technology tools support teaching and research in both K-12 and college level learning environments.
*Students are required to take this course at least twice before candidacy.
3 credit hours
Prerequisite: Permission of instructor. Examines factors influencing research and critical analyses of selected research in mathematics education. Studies representing different methodologies critiqued.
3 credit hours
Focuses on how researchers utilize theoretical frameworks while conducting and reporting research in mathematics education. Attention given to prominent theoretical frameworks in mathematics education and the role of frameworks in connecting methodology and the reporting of findings in mathematics education research.
3 credit hours
Required of students in Mathematics Education concentration of Mathematics and Science Education Ph.D. program. Examines research on teaching and learning mathematics through problem solving as a process, problem-solving strategies and heuristics, and assessing problem solving. Focuses on all branches of mathematics providing an opportunity to synthesize mathematical knowledge.
3 credit hours
Prerequisite: Admission to MSE program and successful completion of either MATH 6900 or MSE 7848. Focuses on the philosophical and theoretical perspectives of ethics and ethical decision making as they relate to the roles and responsibilities of teacher education and researchers in mathematics education. Ethical decision making will be applied through the teaching case method.
3 credit hours
Prerequisite: Admission to MSE program. Explores the history of mathematics education with particular attention to curriculum development and policy development. Major factors that influence the development of curriculum and policy discussed.
3 credit hours
Focus on theoretical and practical issues regarding how students learn mathematics, best practices for teaching mathematics, and issues from current literature on the teaching and learning of mathematics.
Choose one:
3 credit hours
Prerequisite: Permission of instructor. Review and extension of algebraic skills and concepts as they relate to the teaching and learning of algebra. Focus on algebraic thinking and problem solving, algebraic systems, functions, graphing, and linear algebra.
3 credit hours
Prerequisite: Permission of instructor. Investigations into the foundations of plane, solid, and coordinate geometry, motion geometry, similarities and congruencies, measurement and the application of geometry. Instruction will model the suggested pedagogy appropriate for school mathematics.
3 credit hours
Prerequisite: Permission of instructor. Relation to school mathematics. Development of central tendency and variation, concepts of chance including sample space, randomness, conditional probability, and independence.
Choose two:
3 credit hours
Prerequisite: MATH 2010. Continuation of linear algebra topics in MATH 2010 including advanced topics in inner product spaces and structure of linear operators.
3 credit hours
Includes topics in three categories: 1) Propositions, predicates, quantifiers, truth tables, tautologies, and methods of mathematical proof including mathematical induction. 2) Sets, relations, functions, graphs, cardinality, and the Axiom of Choice. 3) Applications of these foundations to selected results in algebra and analysis as time permits. It is recommended that this course be taken early in the graduate program.
3 credit hours
Prerequisite: MATH 4250 or equivalent. Rigorous treatment of limits, continuity, differentiation, and integration; infinite series; introduction to metric spaces.
Choose one:
1 to 9 credit hours
Prerequisite: Mathematical maturity, preparation in the area, and normally nine semester hours of graduate study. Problems course dealing with theory methods and applications.
1 to 9 credit hours
Prerequisite: Mathematical maturity, preparation in the area, and normally nine semester hours of graduate study. Problems course dealing with theory methods and applications.
1 to 9 credit hours
Prerequisite: Mathematical maturity, preparation in the area, and normally nine semester hours of graduate study. Problems course dealing with theory methods and applications.
1 to 6 credit hours
Selection of a research problem, review of pertinent literature, collection and analysis of data, and composition of the dissertation. Once enrolled, students must register for at least one credit hour of dissertation research each semester until completion. S/U grading.
Candidate must
Research and teaching assistantships, with stipends beginning at $18,000, are available on a competitive basis to full-time students in the MSE program. In addition to the stipend, the university also pays all tuition and most fees for assistantship holders. Non-Tennessee residents who are awarded a graduate assistantship are not required to pay out-of-state fees. To learn more about the types of graduate assistantships and to download an application, visit the Graduate Studies Assistantship page.
The College of Graduate Studies also awards a limited number of scholarships. For additional information and applications, visit the Graduate Studies Finance page.
In addition to assistantships and scholarships, MTSU's Office of Financial Aid assists graduate students seeking other forms of financial support while in school.
Dr. Sarah K. Bleiler-Baxter
Sarah.Bleiler@mtsu.edu
615-898-5353
Dr. Sarah K. Bleiler-Baxter
Sarah.Bleiler@mtsu.edu
615-898-5353
Mathematics and Science Education, Ph.D. Program
MTSU Box 76
1301 East Main Street
Murfreesboro, TN 37132
College of Graduate Studies
Middle Tennessee State University
MTSU Box 42
1301 East Main Street
Murfreesboro, TN 37132
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