Doctor of Philosophy (Ph.D.) in Learning & Technology

Students in class

UNLV Program Links

Admissions Deadline
 March 15
 Apply Now

The Ph.D. program in Learning and Technology is designed to enable students to become independent scholars, who are able to make significant contributions to knowledge in the discipline of educational psychology and the field of educational technology. The focus of the program is on the assessment and understanding of learning outcomes and processes in technology-rich learning environments and in modifying those environments in ways that promote more effective learning.

The program will prepare students for a variety of professional careers related to teaching and research in both academic and non-academic settings. For example, students will be prepared to fill faculty or research and development positions at academic institutions, such as universities, community colleges, and K-12 school districts. In addition, students will be prepared to work in non-academic state and federal agencies that deal with issues related to learning and technology as well as in the private sector.

The Ph.D. program in Learning and Technology is housed in the Department of Educational Psychology & Higher Education and operated in association with the Department of Teaching & Learning. Faculty from the Educational Computing and Technology area of the Department of Teaching and Learning and selected faculty from the Department of Educational Psychology comprise the program faculty for this degree.


Admissions Information

Admission to the Ph.D. in Learning & Technology is limited to the most qualified applicants based on a combination of undergraduate grade-point average, standardized test scores, letters of reference, and statement of professional interest and goals.

Admission will be limited to the most qualified applicants based on a combination of the following:

  • An undergraduate grade-point average of 3.00 or above.
  • A graduate grade-point average of 3.00 or above.
  • A combined score of 1000 on the verbal and quantitative sections of the Graduate Record Examination (GRE).
  • A score of 600 or above on the Test of English as a Foreign Language (TOEFL) is also required for students who do not speak English as their first language.
  • Three letters of reference from university faculty or other individuals qualified to judge the applicant's academic potential.
  • The applicant's statement of professional interests and goals.

Your first step in the admission process is the completion of an application for the UNLV Graduate College and the Department reference letter.

Deadline for receipt of materials is March 15.


Program Completion Requirements

In addition to the course requirements, a Learning & Technology student will be responsible for fulfilling the following program requirements:

Residence Credit Requirement

A minimum of 50 percent of the total credits required to complete the doctoral degree not including transferred and dissertation credits must be earned at UNLV after admission to the doctoral degree program.

Scholarly Paper Requirement

Each student must satisfy a scholarly paper requirement by the time he or she has completed 36 credits (Review I). The student must be primarily responsible for carrying out and reporting a study under the supervision of a program faculty member. The requirement may be fulfilled in one of two ways. First, the study may involve the collection and analysis of some empirical data (for example, a pilot study) resulting in a scholarly paper that is submitted to either a professional journal or as a proposal to an annual conference of a national organization. Second, the paper may consist of a literature review that is submitted for publication in a quality, peer-reviewed journal or submitted for presentation at a national conference. Prior to beginning, projects must be approved by a supervising faculty member. Once completed, students must submit to the program coordinator(s): (a) a copy of the paper, (b) a submission acknowledgement, and (c) a completed Review I form from the supervising faculty member.

Preliminary Examination

Each student must take the preliminary examination (Review II) in the last semester of coursework outlined in his/her program of study. This second formal assessment is an examination that will focus on areas of knowledge that are most relevant to the student's potential dissertation topic. The student and his/her committee will determine the content of this examination. In general, the format will focus on in-depth reading and writing directly related to the student's proposed dissertation topic as well as on the student's mastery of previously learned core information.

Dissertation Proposals and Defenses

After successfully completing Review I and Review II, students can then submit a dissertation proposal to their doctoral committee and submit the accompanying "Dissertation Prospectus" form to the Graduate College. The doctoral committee will meet and determine whether to accept or reject the prospectus. A prospectus can be accepted provisionally given that the student follows the committee's suggestions in the dissertation. Upon completion of the full dissertation, a defense will be scheduled. This defense will be scheduled and conducted in accordance with the Graduate College's policies for thesis and dissertation completion. It is the student's responsibility to file the required "Notification of Oral or Written Examination" form with the Graduate College in a timely manner.

A complete listing of the program requirements is available in the UNLV Graduate Catalog.


Course Requirements

Students are required to take core courses in three specialty areas: (1) research methods and statistics, (2) learning, and (3) technology. Students may specialize in either learning or technology, or a combination of both. However, all students are required to actively participate in research and research-related activities throughout their program of study. The Ph.D. in Learning and Technology will consist of 67 credits beyond the Master's degree. Of the 67 credits, 37 will be required courses, 18 will be electives, and 12 will be directed toward dissertation completion. Individual programs of study may exceed the minimum requirements and specific coursework will vary depending on particular area of emphasis.

A complete listing of the course requirements is available in the UNLV Graduate Catalog.


Dissertation

After successfully completing Review I (satisfying the scholarly paper requirement) and Review II (passing the preliminary examination), the student may then submit a dissertation proposal to her/his doctoral committee and submit the accompanying "Dissertation Prospectus" form to the Graduate College. The doctoral committee will meet and determine whether to accept or reject the prospectus. A prospectus can be accepted provisionally given that the student follows the committee's suggestions in the dissertation.

A dissertation is an original contribution to current knowledge in the field and a demonstration of sufficient mastery in the field to pursue independent research and scholarship.

When the dissertation is complete, a defense will be scheduled and conducted in accordance with the Graduate College's policies for thesis and dissertation completion. It is the responsibility of the student to file the required "Notification of Oral or Written Examination" form with the Graduate College in a timely manner.


Forms

Department forms can be downloaded using the links below. You will need Adobe Acrobat Reader Program to download, prepare, and then print the pdf forms. Completed forms are turned in at the main office of the Carlson Education Building, Room 320. Additional forms can also be found on the Graduate College website.

Admission Forms

Forms related to the admissions process can be found in the admissions section of this page.

Independent Study/Research

The form below must be submitted to the Department Office and approved prior to enrollment in individual study/research courses (EPY 780, 782, 783, 787).

  • Approval Request Form (Word | PDF)

Doctoral Committees & Programs of Study

Department Doctoral Examination Templates & Reports


Dr. Michael Nussbaum
Ph.D. in Learning & Technology Program Coordinator
Email: michael.nussbaum@unlv.edu
Phone: 702-895-2665
Room: CEB 325

Dr. Michael McCreery
Ph.D. in Learning & Technology Program Coordinator
Email: michael.mccreery@unlv.edu
Phone: 702-895-1750
Room: CEB 368