PhD in Teaching and Learning with a Focus on Early Childhood and Childhood Education
NYU Steinhardt's Department of Teaching and Learning welcomes applications from individuals seeking a rigorous doctoral program in Teaching and Learning with a focus on Early Childhood and Childhood Education. The program prepares researchers and educators dedicated to improving children's access to equitable opportunities for learning from birth through elementary school.
The doctoral program, which leads to a PhD, requires a minimum of 60 points beyond the master’s degree. The program is designed for people seeking leadership roles such as serving on a college or university faculty, as an educational researcher, or as a curriculum specialist. Extensive individual mentoring is available by our skilled faculty representing many dimensions of early childhood and childhood education.
Points are distributed among courses in the foundations, cognate areas, research, specialization, and dissertation research and preparation. The program is flexible and highly individualized, providing specialties in such related areas as teacher education, curriculum development, child development, innovations in schooling, and specific content areas such as literacy, numeracy, and social studies. Extensive faculty mentoring is a distinctive feature of the doctoral program.
A World-Class Facility for Research
NYU Steinhardt offers a world-class facility for conducting educational research. Factors that distinguish our doctoral programs are:
- Faculty conduct research in a wide variety of educational settings, providing doctoral students with a wide range of potential sites for research activities
- Faculty use a wide range of qualitative and quantitative methodologies
- Faculty serve as doctoral advisors across discipline and program areas
- Programs are designed to foster community among the students and promote greater interaction with research faculty
- Programs are designed to prepare students for all aspects of research process including development and design of research proposals, implementation of a research agenda and dissemination of finding
- NYU Steinhardt's location is one of the most ethnically diverse and cosmopolitan in the world
Faculty Research Interests
Faculty interests and research center on the following key themes in teaching and learning for children from birth through the primary grades:
- Human and child development
- Social contexts of learning
- The influence of culture on teaching and learning
- Multiple ways of knowing
- Families as partners in children's schooling
- The uses of evaluation and assessment in teaching and learning
- The impact of language and literacy development on children's learning
- Curriculum development
Faculty participate in grants and studies that provide students with opportunities to establish their own research agenda.
All doctoral students must complete both Steinhardt-wide and area specific requirements for a total of 60 points prior to the dissertation.
Steinhardt-wide requirements are as follows:
- Pro-Seminar, to be taken in the first semester (3 points)
- Two cognate courses, to be selected by the doctoral student with approval of the advisor; must be taken in an area outside of the student's concentration that are supportive to the student's research (6 points)
- Two Foundations courses (6 points)
- Five research methodology courses, two of which (one quantitative and one qualitative) must be taken in the first year (15 points)
- One specialized methodology course to support the student's area of
- research (3 points)
- Doctoral Dissertation Seminar (3 points)
Early Childhood and Childhood Education-specific requirements are as follows:
- Four seminars, two of which must be taken in the first year (12 points)
- Child Development in Early Childhood or Childhood
- Advanced Studies of Theories of Learning in Early Childhood and Childhood
- Advanced Study of Literacy Development, Teaching, and Learning in Childhood and Childhood Education
- Contemporary Issues in Early Childhood and Childhood Education
Each doctoral student is assigned a faculty adviser in the doctoral student's chosen area of specialization. This adviser serves as an interim academic adviser until the doctoral student selects a doctoral dissertation adviser. Learn more about doctoral advising at Steinhardt.
How to Apply
See application requirements and deadlines for the PhD program in Teaching and Learning. Please indicate your specific interest in Early Childhood and Childhood Education on your application.
See the Graduate Admissions Application Guide for instructions on how to apply online.
Fellowships, research assistant work, and other forms of funding are available. Please see Financial Aid.
All prospective students must meet or provide the following criteria for consideration of admission to this PhD program:
- MA or MS degree, preferably in education or a related field
- 3.5 grade point average in master's program
- Official transcripts from all previous degree granting institutions
- Graduate Record Exam test scores (GRE)
- Statement of Purpose
- Writing sample that shows evidence of capacity for research (e.g., literature review, data collection, data analysis)
- 3 recommendations (2 academic, 1 work-related)