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Physics Education Research and Development Group

Degree Information:


At the University of Minnesota, there are 2 paths one can take to obtain a Ph.D. in Physics Education Research:
1) Ph.D. in Physics with a M.A. in Education or M.S. in Physics; and
2) Ph.D. in Education with a M.S. in Physics.

Students in either program develop strong theoretical backgrounds in Physics, Cognitive Psychology, and Educational Research.  In addition to course work, members of the Physics Education Research Group are involved in numerous application-oriented projects, such as the development and refinement of introductory laboratories, evaluations of course and student performances in the introductory physics sequence, and various aspects of Graduate Teaching Assistant Training (see list under Research on PERG Home Page and Recent Talks and Papers).  In other words, members graduate with substantial experience in applying their knowledge of physics, cognitive psychology, and educational research in very practical contexts.

A list of suggested courses in both Physics and Education have been compiled at the bottom of the page.


   1) Ph.D. in Physics with Masters in Education or Physics

Physics Ph.D. (for more information consult School of Physics and Astronomy Graduate Student Handbook)

Total Semester Credits (not including thesis credits)

40

Major Course Requirements

12 from Quantum Mechanics 5001/2 and Classical Mechanics 5011/2, 2 seminar credits, plus electives

Thesis Credits

24

Minor or Supporting Program Semester Credits

12*

Graduate Written Exam

Pass by Fall of 2nd year

File Degree Program

After passing Graduate Written Exam

Preliminary Oral Exam

Pass by end of 3rd year

File Thesis Proposal

After passing Preliminary Oral Exam

Final Oral Committee

5 members: 3 from major field, 1 from physics outside major field or from declared minor field, 1 from outside physics

Thesis Reviewer

3 member panel: advisor, 1 from major field, and 1 from outside major field, representing minor or supporting field.  Thesis must be approved one week before defense 

With ...

Education Masters (for more information consult Department of Curriculum and Instruction M.A. page

 

M.A. (Plan B)

Total Semester Credits

30

Major Course Requirements

14

Minor or Supporting Program Semester Credits

6*

File Degree Program

After 10 credits

Plan B Project

Minimum of 120 hours of work

Final Oral Committee

3 members: 2 from major field, 1 from minor or related field

Thesis Reviewer

 All members of oral committee

Or ...

Physics Masters (for more information consult School of Physics and Astronomy Graduate Student Handbook)

M.S. (Plan A)

M.S. (Plan B)

Total Semester Credits (not including thesis credits)

20

30

Major Course Requirements

14

including either Quantum Mechanics 5001/2 or Classical Mechanics 5011/2, plus electives

14

including either Quantum Mechanics 5001/2 or Classical Mechanics 5011/2, plus electives

Thesis Credits

10

0

Minor or Supporting Program Semester Credits

6

6

Graduate Written Exam

Taken once

Taken once

File Degree Program

After 10 credits

After 10 credits

File Thesis Title

Register thesis title when distributed to reviewers

NA

Plan B Project

NA

Minimum of 120 hours of work

Final Oral Committee

3 members: 2 from major field, 1 from minor or related fields 

3 members: 2 from major field, 1 from minor or related fields 

Thesis / Plan B Project Reviewer

All members of oral committee

All members of oral committee

*Note: Masters course work count towards Ph.D. course work in terms of the minor/supporting program


2) Ph.D. in Education with Masters in Physics

Education Ph.D. (for more information consult Department of Curriculum and Instruction Ph.D. page)

Total Semester Credits (not including thesis credits)

54

Major Course Requirements

24

9 from Core I - Critical Examination of Curriculum in Context (CI8131), Core II - Teaching Theory and Research (CI8132), Core III - Research Methods in Curriculum and Instruction (CI8133), plus electives

Research Methodology Courses

12

6 in quantitative research methods (Statistics) and 6 in qualitative research methods (Ethnography, Phenomenology, Case Studies, etc.)

Educational Foundations Courses

6

3 in psychological foundations and 3 in social, historical, cultural, or philosophical foundations

Thesis Credits

24

Minor or Supporting Program Semester Credits

12*

File Degree Program

Approximately 2 semesters prior to the preliminary examination

Graduate Written Exam

Taken near completion of course work

Preliminary Oral Exam

Taken after completing substantial part of course work

File Thesis Proposal

After passing Preliminary Oral Exam

Final Oral Committee

4 members: 3 from major field, and1 from outside major field, representing minor or supporting field

Thesis Reviewer

3 member panel: advisor, 1 from major field, and 1 from outside major field, representing minor or supporting field.  Thesis must be approved one week before defense 

With ...

Physics Masters (for more information consult School of Physics and Astronomy Graduate Student Handbook)

M.S. (Plan A)

M.S. (Plan B)

Total Semester Credits (not including thesis credits)

20

30

Major Course Requirements

14

including either Quantum Mechanics 5001/2 or Classical Mechanics 5011/2, plus electives

14

including either Quantum Mechanics 5001/2 or Classical Mechanics 5011/2, plus electives

Thesis Credits

10

0

Minor or Supporting Program Semester Credits

6

6

Graduate Written Exam

Taken once

Taken once

File Degree Program

After 10 credits

After 10 credits

File Thesis Title

Register thesis title when distributed to reviewers

NA

Plan B Project

NA

Minimum of 120 hours of work

Final Oral Committee

3 members: 2 from major field, 1 from minor or related fields 

3 members: 2 from major field, 1 from minor or related fields 

Thesis / Plan B Project Reviewer

All members of oral committee

All members of oral committee

*Note: Masters course work count towards Ph.D. course work in terms of the minor/supporting program


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  • Last modified on October 15, 2012