2022-2023 Graduate Course Catalog 
    Jul 16, 2024  
2022-2023 Graduate Course Catalog [ARCHIVED CATALOG]

Cultural Foundations of Education, PhD

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Alan Foley, Chair, 363 Huntington Hall, 315-443-3343, afoley@syr.edu

Cultural Foundations of Education is a highly demanding and nationally prominent interdisciplinary graduate program created to support fundamental inquiry into the nature of education. Graduate students draw on the disciplines of history, philosophy, and sociology to analyze issues related to inequality in education. Faculty interests include disability, the relationship of popular culture and mass media to education, race, racism and multiculturalism, identity and difference, democracy and education, intergroup dialogue, theories of knowledge and feminist theory. Our alumni have success finding jobs in higher education, foundations, policy research, school systems, and government agencies.

Each program is individually designed, allowing students to work with their advisors to build their own program around their research interests. This may include courses from other Syracuse University programs and colleges, including the Maxwell School of Citizenship and Public Affairs, the S.I. Newhouse School of Public Communications, and the College of Arts and Sciences. At the same time, cohorts of students take courses in the department together so that students share a common vocabulary.

Faculty members are well-known in their fields and actively engaged in ongoing research. The department's outstanding graduate students collaborate with faculty in research, publishing, and professional activities. The department regularly sponsors opportunities for students and faculty to share their work, discuss current issues, or read and critique current articles. There is a strong emphasis on community amongst scholars.

Student Learning Outcomes

1. Explain historical, philosophical, and/or sociological foundations of educational practice and policy on issues related to inequality in education

2. Expand and synthesize knowledge base on the way in which schools reproduce or reduce inequality in schools and schooling

3. Evaluate research that explores the taken-for-granted assumptions and values underlying education.=

4. Compare and contrast methodological frameworks to shape the conceptualization, design and process of educational research

5. Conduct interdisciplinary scholarly research that integrates multiple perspectives

Major Requirements

The department supports interdisciplinary work and encourages the use of diverse research approaches including empirical and philosophical work, historical research, and policy analysis. The doctoral degree program is designed so that students both receive a broad education and develop disciplinary tools without being restricted to a narrowly specialized program of study. Students can choose a particular concentration-history of education, philosophy of education, or sociology of education-or they can work between these areas. Within these concentrations, students may want to focus on particular areas of research such as disability studies, popular culture, urban education, gender and education, popular culture and race, racism and education.

A minimum of 90 credit hours beyond the baccalaureate degree which includes a minimum of 45 credit hours in a Major area is required plus 9-24 dissertation credit hours.

At least half of all coursework must be taken at Syracuse University and up to 30 credits can be transferred in from a graduate program at another institution with advisor’s approval.

Each program of study must include EDU 781: Institutions and Processes of Education. 

The PhD program in Cultural Foundations of Education is research-oriented. Students are required to take at least 12 credit hours of coursework on research methodology so they will have a depth of competence in one research methodology and be sufficiently familiar with other methods used with some frequencies in their area of expertise. Students work with their advisor to select research methodology courses that are most appropriate for students’ professional goals.

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