Program Information

Students are eligible to apply for either the research or practitioner track after the completion of four doctoral-level courses with a MATH prefix. All students must apply for a track before beginning the comprehensive experience. The application consists of a one-page statement of purpose to be submitted to the program director. The statement of purpose should justify the selection of the track based on the student’s experiences, interests, accomplishments, and career goals. Other considerations may include work in courses, experience in the classroom, and research experience. The members of the mathematics education doctoral faculty will determine alignment between the student’s statement of purpose and the proposed track. Candidates are responsible for becoming familiar with the work program and dissertation descriptions for each track before submitting the application.

In addition to differences in the work programs, the two tracks differ with respect to the nature of the dissertation. At any point during (or before) the preparation of the dissertation proposal, if it is deemed by the dissertation committee or doctoral faculty members that the nature of the proposed dissertation is better aligned to the other track, the candidate will be advised to switch tracks.

Dissertation for Practitioner Track

This option is recommended for candidates intending to become leaders in their profession. The dissertation focuses on the development of knowledge related to topics such as curricula, policy, and professional development grounded in relevant literature. For example, under this option, candidates can write a theme-based curriculum, a policy manual for his/her school district, or create a professional development program. All work must be original and based on current research. To this end, candidates must justify the development of their work through a theoretical/conceptual framework and literature review. Though the development of the module, curriculum unit, policy manual, or program is this option’s main focus, candidates must include a process of formative and summative assessment on their work. This may take on the form of a pilot study, feedback from colleagues obtained through interviews, or some other small-scale review system. The dissertation under this option would inform professionals such as policy makers, curriculum developers, mathematics educators, classroom teachers, and administrators through publications in practitioner journals, classroom resource books, and conference proceedings. Additionally, candidates are strongly encouraged to present their findings at state, regional, national and international conferences. Applicability and relevance to a practitioner audience or setting are the defining characteristics of these studies.

Dissertation for the Research Track

This option is recommended for candidates intending to pursue a career in higher education. The dissertation focuses on the development and execution of a sound research project grounded in the literature. For example, under this option, candidates can engage in research in collaboration with teachers in order to develop a framework for effectively listening and responding to children’s mathematical thinking about a particular mathematical concept. The candidate works closely with the committee members to identify research questions and methods and to analyze results. All work must be original and based on current research. To this end, candidates must justify the development of their work through a theoretical/conceptual framework and literature review. The research may involve the collection of quantitative or qualitative data, or may employ mixed-methods. The dissertation would inform professionals such as mathematics education researchers and policy makers, curriculum developers, mathematics educators, classroom teachers, and administrators through publications in mathematics education research journals. Additionally, candidates are strongly encouraged to present their findings at state, regional, and national conferences. Applicability and relevance to advancing the field of research in mathematics education are the defining characteristics of these studies.

Course Requirements

  1. REQUIRED MATHEMATICS EDUCATION COURSES:

    Complete 5 courses from the list below for a total of 15 semester hours:

    • MATH 811 Mathematics Education Leadership (3 credit hours)
    • MATH 812 Mathematical Modeling for Middle Level & High School Grades (3 credit hours)
    • MATH 813 Geometry for Middle and High School Grades (3 credit hours)
    • MATH 814 Algebra and Analysis for Middle and High School Grades (3 credit hours)
    • MATH 815 Critical Thinking and Cognitive Development in Mathematics (3 credit hours)
    • MATH 816 Mathematics Curricula (3 credit hours)
  2. REQUIRED EDUCATION COURSES

    Complete 3 courses to earn 9 semester hours:

    • EDFD 801 Democracy and Education3
    • EDFD 803 Pedagogy: The Art and Science of Teaching and Learning (3 credit hours)
    • EDFD 804 Organizational Change, Policy and Leadership (3 credit hours)
  3. ELECTIVE MATHEMATICS EDUCATION COURSES

    Complete 3 courses from the list below to earn 9 semester hours.

    • MATH 740 Technological Tools for Education in Mathematics (3 credit hours)
    • MATH 741 Historical and Multicultural Foundations of Mathematical Thought (3 credit hours)
    • MATH 742 Mathematical Modeling in the Sciences (3 credit hours)
    • MATH 743 Advanced Perspectives in High School Mathematics (3 credit hours)
    • MATH 744 Selected Topics in Mathematics Education (3 credit hours)
    • MATH 745 The Use of Teacher Knowledge in Mathematics Teaching (3 credit hours)
    • MATH 790 Independent Study in Mathematics Education (3 credit hours)

PRACTITIONER TRACK IN MATHEMATICS EDUCATION

Complete 60 semester hours including the following 8 requirement(s).

  1. RESEARCH REQUIREMENT

    Complete the following 5 requirements for a total of 15 semester hours:

    • EDFD 820 Qualitative Methods for Educational Research (3 credit hours)
    • EDFD 821 Quantitative Methods for Educational Research (3 credit hours)
    • EDFD 822 Advanced Methods of Quantitative Inquiry in Education 3
      EDFD 823 Advanced Qualitative Research in Education (3 credit hours)
    • MATH 825 Research in Mathematics Education (3 credit hours)
    • MATH 830 Dissertation Proposal Seminar (3 credit hours)
  2. QUALIFYING ASSESSMENT

    Successfully complete the qualifying assessment requirement.

  3. REQUIRED DISSERTATION COURSES

    Complete the following 2 requirements:

    1. Dissertation Advisement
      MATH 900 Dissertation Advisement (12 credit hours)
    2. Dissertation Extension

      After 12 hours of Dissertation Advisement, register for 1 hour of each semester w/in time limit set by Grad School.

      MATH 901 Dissertation Extension 1
  4. ADMISSION TO CANDIDACY

    Following completion of pre-dissertation research courses and qualifying exam, one may be admitted to candidacy.

  5. DISSERTATION REQUIREMENT Complete a dissertation in accordance with University and doctoral program requirements.

RESEARCH TRACK IN MATHEMATICS EDUCATION Complete 67 semester hours including the following 10 requirement(s).

  1. RESEARCH REQUIREMENT

    Complete the following 6 requirements for a total of 18 semester hours:

    • EDFD 820 Qualitative Methods for Educational Research (3 credit hours)
    • EDFD 821 Quantitative Methods for Educational Research (3 credit hours)
    • EDFD 822 Advanced Methods of Quantitative Inquiry in Education (3 credit hours)
    • EDFD 823 Advanced Qualitative Research in Education (3 credit hours)
    • MATH 825 Research in Mathematics Education (3 credit hours)
    • MATH 830 Dissertation Proposal Seminar (3 credit hours)
  2. PRACTICUM REQUIREMENT

    Complete the following two requirements for a total of 4 semester hours:

    • MATH 821 Mathematics Education in Higher Education (3 credit hours)
    • MATH 822 Mathematics Education in Higher Education Practicum (1 credit hour)
  3. QUALIFYING ASSESSMENT

    Successfully complete the qualifying assessment requirement.

  4. REQUIRED DISSERTATION COURSES

    Complete the following requirement:

  5. Dissertation Advisement
    • MATH 900 Dissertation Advisement (12 credit hours)
  6. Dissertation Extension

    After 12 hours of Dissertation Advisement, register for 1 hour of each semester w/in time limit set by Grad School.

    • MATH 901 Dissertation Extension (1 credit hour)
  7. ADMISSION TO CANDIDACY

    Following completion of pre-dissertation research courses and qualifying exam, one may be admitted to candidacy.

  8. PUBLICATION REQUIREMENT

    Students in the research track will be expected to complete the following activities before defending the dissertation:

    1. submit an article for publication to a peer-reviewed mathematics education journal.
    2. present a research paper at a national or international conference
  9. DISSERTATION REQUIREMENT

    Complete a dissertation in accordance with University and doctoral program requirements.

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Comprehensives Experience

Guidelines for the comprehensive experience:
Candidates are eligible to commence the comprehensive experience after the completion of 75% of required coursework including MATH 825 and at least one of MATH 820 and MATH 821.
The comprehensive experience includes a written portion and a presentation.
  1. Written portion:
    1. Review of the research literature.

      Candidates prepare an extensive review of the literature related to a specific topic in mathematics education that focuses on current and relevant literature and connects theory to research and past research to current research. Candidates should choose a topic related to their potential dissertation topic. The review of the literature should include a broad perspective on the topic by describing different strands of research and providing comparative analysis. Although the work prepared for the literature review may become the basis of the candidate’s dissertation, the qualifying experience should focus on the literature and should be distinguished from the proposal stage, where the candidate presents his/her research questions. Candidates are encouraged to conclude their literature review by highlighting gaps in the extant literature and using the literature to propose future directions of research in the area. The literature review should be about 30 pages in length and must follow current APA guidelines. The literature review should explicitly address the following overarching questions:

      1. How has the theory underlying your topic evolved through the history of mathematics education? What are the seminal works?
      2. What are areas for further study?
    2. Integrative essay

      The purpose of the integrative essay is to enable students to demonstrate their theoretical and practical understandings of the core competencies of the Ed.D. in Mathematics Education. Through the integrative essay, candidates consider the wide body of literature related to mathematics education and demonstrates an understanding of the literature in a cogent way. Candidates are given two written prompts chosen by the program director. Candidates have three weeks to prepare responses to the two prompts. Each response should be 8 pages (single spaced) in length. The integrative essay is sent to each member of the committee two weeks prior to the anticipated presentation date.

  2. Presentation

    Candidates present their literature review (Part A of their written work) at a departmental seminar. The audience for the seminar will include faculty, undergraduate and graduate students and others from outside MSU who may be interested in applying to the doctoral program. The candidate presents his/her literature review for 30 minutes, followed by questions from the audience for an additional 15 minutes. Because this part of the comprehensive experience is intended to emulate conference presentations and because it is important to be able to present material in a succinct way, these time limits will be strictly enforced. Following the seminar, the committee remains to ask the candidate questions related to the integrative essay and any additional questions in regard to the literature review or the presentation. The candidate is not allowed any materials besides copies of the literature review and two integrative essays. After up to one hour of discussions, the candidate leaves the room and the committee members meet to discuss the presentation and the responses to questions about the integrative essay.

    The quality of the qualifying experience will be assessed with regard to understanding of the field, clarity of writing, ability to communicate effectively during the presentation, and ability to answer questions. Candidates are encouraged to take courses concurrent with their work on the qualifying experience but may not begin work on the dissertation proposal until the qualifying experience requirements have been fulfilled.

    Timeline:

    1. Candidate prepares literature review in consultation with advisor and committee members.
    2. Candidate sends literature review to entire committee for initial approval. Each member of the committee has two weeks to review the literature review and consult with one another to decide if the candidate has approval to move forward to the presentation stage. The committee advisor will notify the candidate of the committee’s approval of the literature review.
    3. Once the candidate receives initial approval from the committee, he/she notifies the program director for written prompts for the integrative essay.
    4. Candidate has three weeks to complete integrative essay.
    5. Candidate submits the integrative essay to his/her entire committee. Each member of the committee has two weeks to review the integrative essay and will consult with one another to decide if the candidate has approval to move forward to the presentation stage. The committee advisor will notify the candidate of the committee’s approval of the integrative essays.
    6. A presentation date is set, no earlier than two weeks upon submission of integrative essay.
    7. Candidate gives presentation, as described above.
    8. Committee members pass or fail the candidate, notifying them immediately of the decision. If the candidate passes, he/she can begin the dissertation process. The approval of dissertation committee form should be completed at this point. If the candidate fails the comprehensive experience, he/she may attempt it one additional time.

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Dissertation

Practice-based dissertation:
This option is suitable for candidates who wish to become leaders in their profession. The dissertation focuses on the development of knowledge related to topics such as curricula, policy, and professional development. For example, under this option, candidates might choose to write a theme-based curriculum, write a policy manual for his/her school district, or create a professional development program. All work must be original and based on current research. To this end, candidates must justify the development of their work through a literature review. Though the development of the module, curriculum unit, policy manual, or program is the main focus of the dissertation under this option, candidates must include a process of formative and summative assessment on their work. This may take on the form of a pilot study, feedback from colleagues obtained through interviews, or some other small-scale review system. The dissertation under this option would inform professionals such as policy makers, classroom teachers, and administrators through publications in practitioner journals, classroom resource books, and conference proceedings. Additionally, candidates are strongly encouraged to present their findings at state, regional, and national conferences.
Research-based dissertation:
This option is recommended for all candidates intending to pursue a career in higher education. The dissertation under this option focuses on the development and execution of a sound research project grounded in the literature. The candidate works closely with the committee members to identify research questions and methods and to analyze results. The research may involve the collection of quantitative or qualitative data, or may employ mixed-methods. Dissertations written under this option should be publishable in research mathematics education journals. Additionally, candidates are strongly encouraged to present their findings at state, regional, and national conferences.

View dissertation titles of recent graduates

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Course Projection

Fall 2014 - Summer 2015 | Fall 2015- Summer 2016

 Fall 2014Spring 2015Summer 2015
EDFD Requirement EDFD 804    
 
Math Requirement MATH 825 MATH 814  
 
Math Elective MATH 821 MATH 744  
 
Research MATH 825    
EDFD 820 - W EDFD 820 - W EDFD 820 - W
EDFD 821 - W EDFD 821 - W  
EDFD 822 - Th EDFD 822 - Th  
EDFD 823 - Th EDFD 823 - Th  
 Fall 2015Spring 2016Summer 2016
EDFD Requirement EDFD 801    
 
Math Requirement MATH 816 MATH 811  
 
Math Elective MATH 740 MATH 744  
 
Research      
EDFD 820 - W EDFD 820 - W  
EDFD 821 - W EDFD 821 - W  
EDFD 822 - Th EDFD 822 - Th  
EDFD 823 - Th EDFD 823 - Th  

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Program Progress

Coursework
  • Complete 75% of coursework including:
  • MATH 825
  • At least one from Quantitative Methods or Qualitative Methods
  • If not enrolling in coursework, sign up for continuous matriculation
Comprehensive Experience
  • Seek comprehensive experience chair and committee members
  • Complete coursework - run a model audit to make sure that you're not missing any classes
  • If you are not taking courses while working on your comprehensives, enroll in MATH 920
  • Submit "Qualifying Assessment Result" form and "Notification of Admission to Doctoral Candidacy" form
  • Begin IRB application - attend workshop and complete tutorial prior to applying
Dissertation Proposal
  • Seek dissertation chair and committee members
  • Submit "Approval of Dissertation Committee" form
  • Complete and defend proposal
  • Submit "Dissertation Proposal Approval" form
Dissertation
  • Enroll in MATH 900 (Dissertation Advisement) for 12 credits
  • Enroll in MATH 901 (Dissertation Extension) as necessary
  • Complete final audit through registrar's office the semester prior to anticipated graduation
  • Submit "Application for Dissertaton Defense Date" form no later than November 1 for January graduation or March 1 for May graduation.
  • Defend dissertation and submit "Report of Dissertation Defense" form to graduate school
  • Submit final copy of dissertation for formatting to the graduate school
  • Once approval received from The Graduate School, submit dissertation electronically

FINISH