Join a community of scholars.
Doctoral study in education at Washington University in St. Louis is aimed at strengthening and deepening the student's analytical understanding of education in both research and practice. Our doctoral program focuses on two major strands of study:
- Social Contexts & Policy Studies
- Applied Psychology of Learning & Motivation
Students working toward a PhD in education are expected to acquire an understanding of education as a complex social, cultural, and moral/political activity and as a field of study with rich literature bases and strong ties to disciplinary knowledge, classroom practice, and a variety of technologies.
Our faculty bring special interests and expertise to the examination of educational interactions in such sites as schools, families, and other cultural institutions. Students are expected to acquire theoretical and empirical expertise in an area of concentration even as they demonstrate their broader understanding of educational processes and problems. Finally, students are expected to acquire methodological competence in empirical inquiry and to pursue questions that are of interest and import for the student individually as well as a larger educational community. Graduates of the PhD program should be prepared to join the community of professional educators who contribute to our understanding of the complexity of education and to continue inquiring into educational processes and problems wherever they choose to work.