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Program Requirements

The Doctoral Program in Instructional Psychology and Technology requires a minimum of 90 hours beyond the Bachelor's degree. Credits from a previously earned Master's degree may be included in the 90 hours with advisory committee approval.

The theoretical core of the Doctoral Program in IPT consists of the following courses or their equivalent at the graduate level:

EIPT 6101 Propaedeutic Seminar 1 hr.

EIPT 6183 Cognition and Instruction 3 hrs.

EIPT 6143 - Instructional Development and Learning Systems 3 hrs.

EIPT 5533 – Introduction to Instructional Technology 3 hrs.

EIPT 6203 – Instrument Development 3 hrs.

Total = 13 hrs.


The following courses, or their equivalent at the graduate level, constitute the methodology core:

EIPT 5023 Quantitative Meth. in Ed. I 3 hrs.

EIPT 6023 Quantitative Meth. in Ed. II 3 hrs.

EIPT 6043 Qualitative Research Methods 3 hrs.

Plus two other courses in either quantitative or qualitative research methods (6 hours)

Total = 15 hrs.


Students must also earn credits in the following categories:

Seminars or Independent Studies 6-9 hrs.

Specialization Courses 15 hrs.

EIPT 6980 Dissertation Hours 9 hrs


A listing of graduate courses in Instructional Psychology and Technology can be found at

Residency Requirement

The Department of Educational Psychology and the IPT program area have adopted a rigorous alternative to the traditional residency requirement. Rather than focus on the amount of time the student spends in residence, the new policy focuses on the specific nature of the products and experiences which the student is expected to accomplish during the graduate program. Each set of products and experiences is developed in consultation between the student and his/her doctoral committee. See the Department Graduate Student Handbook (1997 Edition) for a complete set of policies and procedures governing the residency requirement.

The General Examination (Generals)

Upon completion of all required coursework (exclusive of the dissertation), the student must complete the general examination.  Prior to attempting the general examination, a student must have demonstrated the required research proficiency(ies).

In order to take the general examination, the student must complete the Application for the general examination (available from the DEP Office) and submit the completed form to the Graduate Liaison Officer for approval by the Graduate Dean.  Following approval, the student should check with his or her advisor regarding the time and place of the examinations, which are usually scheduled during each long semester.  Students are strongly encouraged NOT to schedule general examinations for the summer term, when many faculty are away from campus.

The student's advisor will work with the other committee members to develop a set of examination questions intended to capture both the breadth and depth of the student's knowledge.  Although there is some flexibility in terms of when students complete the written portion of the exam, students are expected to write the exam within a 3 to 5 week time frame.  Prior to the oral portion of the exam, committee members will not give the student feedback on either answers to or thoughts about the questions.  During the period in which the student is writing, the advisor will consult with the student only regarding clarification of what is being asked in the question.

Upon completion of the written portion of the Generals, the student should schedule an advisory committee meeting for the oral portion of the examination.  Following satisfactory completion of this phase, a form stating the results of both portions of the examination shall be signed by the entire doctoral committee and must be submitted to the Graduate Dean and filed with the Graduate Liaison Officer.  Time limits following the general examination within which all degree requirements must be completed may not exceed the five year limit established by the Graduate College.  Failure to accomplish all requirements will necessitate another writing of the general examination.

The Dissertation

Following successful completion of the general examination, the "advisory committee" usually becomes the "dissertation committee."  Changes in membership are permitted, however, in order to bring needed expertise to the new committee.

Prospectus:  The student should identify the dissertation topic and begin the development of the prospectus in consultation with the major advisor and the dissertation committee.  When the major advisor agrees that the Prospectus is ready, the student distributes copies to the doctoral committee members and arranges a Prospectus Conference, preferably during one of the long semesters.  At that meeting the committee, working with the student, will suggest any needed modifications and sign their approval when satisfactory.  A signed copy of the Prospectus is filed with the Graduate Liaison Officer.  The student may now proceed with the dissertation research.  If modifications to the prospectus are necessary, the committee must approve them and they must be filed as amendments to the original prospectus.

No thesis, prospectus or dissertation meetings will be held during the summer if committees include faculty on nine-month contracts.  To hold thesis, prospectus or dissertation meeting during the summer, the student  must obtain written approval for a meeting from all committee members and the department chair prior to the first day of final exams of the spring semester.  In agreeing to such a meeting the student and committee members acknowledge that such action is voluntary and is not considered an expected part of faculty responsibilities during the summer.

Format and Process:  The student should ascertain precisely the format and processing requirements of his or her committee.  For example, the student should learn exactly how each committee member wishes to review work in progress, i.e., chapter by chapter or in larger portions.  Careful attention should be paid at this point to all the necessary procedural steps regarding dissertations and defense listed on the doctoral checklist, and all deadline dates (See calendar in current Class Schedule Bulletin).

Having once enrolled in dissertation hours, the candidate must maintain continuous enrollment by enrolling each long semester in at least two hours of Education 6980--Dissertation Research.  (See Graduate College Bulletin).  If continuous enrollment is interrupted for two consecutive semesters, excluding summer session, the candidate is dropped from the rolls and must reapply for admission if he/she wishes to complete the program.  On readmission a student is governed by the Graduate College regulations in effect at the time of readmission.

Final Oral Examination:  When approved by the major advisor a reading copy of the dissertation is submitted to the Graduate College along with a memorandum of approval from the major advisor and endorsed by the graduate liaison.  The Graduate College will provide a form authorizing the final examination (oral defense of the dissertation).  Reading copies should be distributed to committee members at least two weeks before the final oral examination is scheduled so that their corrections and comments can be incorporated into the final dissertation copy.

It is the student's responsibility to arrange with members of his/her doctoral committee the date, hour, and place of the examination and to send announcement of the final oral examination, an abstract of the dissertation, and a copy of the student's vita to Departmental faculty members at least one week before the examination.  Because many faculty in the College of Education are now on nine-month appointments, no dissertation defenses will be conducted during the summer unless the student obtains written approval for a meeting from all committee members and the department chair prior to the first day of final exams of the spring semester.

Major Advisor

Once the student is admitted to the Graduate College, an advisor is assigned by the program area or jointly selected with the student.  The advisor must have the appropriate graduate faculty status.  The student should meet with the advisor as soon as possible in order for them to have sufficient time together to initiate and develop the student's program of study.

Advisory Committee Selection

The advisory committee will consist of a chairperson (usually the student's advisor), at least two additional members from the IPT program area, at least one representative from outside the Department, and other faculty members to total at least five.  Under very exceptional cases due to staffing problems or other equally exceptional causes this rule may be modified, if and only if, a statement approved by the area faculty is filed with the Graduate Liaison Office indicating the approval of such an action.  The requirement of having at least one member from outside the Department may not be waived.

The advisory committee is chosen early in the program (but not later than the end of the second semester after admission), by the student with assistance from the advisor.  Invited faculty members individually decide whether or not to serve.  Their decision will usually depend upon their area of expertise, interest, advisory load, and committee load.

When all invited committee members have agreed to serve, the student should obtain and fill out the Doctoral Committee Appointment Form, obtain the signatures of the members and the advisor, and submit the form to the Graduate Liaison Officer for recording and approval and forwarding to the Graduate College.  The committee is then formally appointed by the Graduate Dean upon recommendation from the student's advisor and the DEP Graduate Liaison Officer.

Advisory Conference   (See also current Graduate College Bulletin)

The advisory conference is the time at which the full committee, in conference with the student, approves the coursework, research proficiency areas, and the residency plan.  The student distributes tentative versions of these plans to each committee member using the Advisory Conference Form and the Residence Requirement Form.  Also distributed are a copy of the student's personal vita, and a statement of the projected time frame for completing the remaining degree requirements.  Scheduling the meeting time and place are the responsibilities of the student. Following the advisory conference, all completed forms must be sent to the Graduate College after approval of the Graduate Liaison Officer.