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Overview


Engineering education research and computing education research primarily focuses on understanding how people learn engineering and computing respectively and how to improve instruction. Both are species of discipline-based education research (DBER), similar to chemistry education research and physics education research. There is also a significant research area that focuses on broadening participation in engineering and computing, fields that have long exhibited underrepresented of women and underserved minority populations. A Ph.D. in engineering and computing education will strengthen the quality and reputation of the teaching of graduate and undergraduate engineering and computer science.
 
This degree program merges two existing strengths: those of the STEM Transformation Institute, whose researchers conduct nationally impactful research in STEM Education primarily in physics, biology, and mathematics, and the strength of FIU’s College of Engineering and Computing, which in 2017-18 produced $25M of externally funded research and hosts one of the largest undergraduate programs in the nation.

Admission Requirements 

The Application Requirements, as described below, are meant to provide information about an applicant’s interests, goals, previous experiences, and strengths. Each requirement will be reviewed as part of the complete application package by SUCCEED faculty.

Deadlines: The priority application deadline is January 15th of the same year for Fall semester admission. The Graduate Program Committee will continue to review and consider applications after this deadline.

Please note, for international students, additional time is required to process visa applications. Therefore, although the committee will review applications after January 15th, the committee cannot guarantee an international student, if admitted, will be able to enroll the following fall semester due to the necessary visa processing time.

The Graduate Program Committee will also consider applications for spring enrollment. Please reach out to either the Graduate Program Director and/or the Senior Program Coordinator if you are interested in spring enrollment. Deadlines will be posted on the SUCCEED website as appropriate.

Requirements:

  1. A one to two-page, single-spaced Statement of Purpose that describes your professional goals, how the program would help you achieve those goals, and what experiences have prepared you to pursue a doctoral degree in Engineering and Computing Education.
  2. Three letters of recommendation.
  3. A copy of your transcripts from the institutions where you pursued a Bachelor’s degree and, if relevant, a Master’s degree.
  4. [Waived for Spring 2022 and Fall 2022 Applicants] A copy of your Graduate Record Exam results. Scores should be from an exam taken within the past five years.
  5. International students whose native language is not English must submit TOEFL or IELTS scores OR Duolingo (NOTE: Duolingo will be accepted for Spring 2022 and Fall 2022 applicants. (Note: a score of 80 or higher on the TOEFL iBT (this corresponds to 550 on the old TOEFL test) or 3 overall on the IELTS. The University Graduate School has a list of countries that are exempt from this requirement.)
  6. OPTIONAL:
    1. A copy of your resume or CV.
    2. We also recommend reaching out to at least one SUCCEED faculty member prior to applying to learn more about the program.

 

Note: Incoming students are expected to have (or be currently completing) a Bachelor’s (or Master’s) in Engineering or Computing or a closely-related field.

For more information about the application requirements, please contact the Graduate Program Director, Dr. Alexandra Coso Strong (Alexandra.strong@fiu.edu) or the Senior Program Coordinator, Ileana Lindsay (ilindsay@fiu.edu).

Graduation Requirements for the program:

The Engineering and Computing Education (ECED) doctoral program aims to prepare students:  

  • To conduct and direct research in engineering or computing education,  
  • To design and assess inclusive, innovative, and effective educational experiences in engineering, computing, and/or engineering and computing education,  
  • To address critical issues in equity, diversity, and inclusion within engineering and computing education, and  
  • For a diverse set of professional trajectories both inside and outside the classroom.  

These learning outcomes are achieved and assessed through coursework, teaching and service experiences, a comprehensive exam, and independent research in the form of a doctoral dissertation. Please see the graduate handbook for additional details on the degree requirements in detail and various resources for students.  

COURSEWORK: 

Overall, an ECED Ph.D. requires a minimum of 75 credit hours beyond the bachelor degree, which include  

  • Engineering and Computing Education Core Courses (9 courses, 20 Credits)  
    • 4 Foundational Courses (11 credits)  
    • Seminar on STEM Education Research (0 credits) 
    • 3 Research Methods and Statistics Electives Courses (9 credits)  
  • Teaching Requirement/Pedagogy Courses (2 courses, 4 credits)  
  • Engineering and Computing Education Specialization Courses (3 Courses, 9 credits)
  • Discipline-Specific Specialization (5 courses, 15 credits) 
  • Dissertation Research Credits (15 credits)  
  • Additional credits in the form of graduate research or other coursework (12 credits)  

 See below for additional information about the coursework. 

 PROGRAM MILESTONES:  

The completion of the ECED curriculum is one component of the doctoral program. To achieve all of the outcomes of the program, doctoral students will also be required to:  

  • Select a Major Advisor and assemble a Dissertation Committee.  
  • Successfully complete the Comprehensive Exam. Upon completion of the required coursework and the Comprehensive Exam, the student advances to Candidacy.  
  • Successfully present and submit a Dissertation Proposal.  
  • Successfully submit and present a Dissertation based upon original research in Engineering and/or Computing Education.  

Lastly, to support each student’s professional development, all students in the program will annually have to complete (1) a Service and Professional Development requirement and (2) an Evaluation and Mentoring Plan Review. 

Each of these milestones is outlined in detail within the ECED Graduate Student Handbook. 

Course Requirements

  • Engineering and Computing Education Foundations (12 credits)

    Students must complete the following courses:

    • EGS-6008 Fundamentals of Engineering and Computing Education (3) - Introductory course providing a conceptual understanding of engineering and computing education through philosophical theories for research and practice. Theory-based methods will guide students through a historical context of engineering and computing education and its impact on current and future aspects of the fields. 

    • EGN-6900 Methods and Practices in Engineering and Computing Education Research (3) - Foundational course in research methods and practices of engineering and computing education researchers, focusing on research design decisions, research quality, ethical implications, and publishing. Prerequisite: EDF 6481 or permission of instructor 

    • EGS-6057 Equity in STEM Education: Research, Policy, and Practice (3) - An analysis of diversity and inclusion through research, policy, and practice within science, technology, engineering and mathematics (STEM) education for the private and public sectors. The primary focus of this course will be engineering and computing education with topics in science, technology, and math incorporated as applicable. 
    • EGN-6942 Mentored Teaching Practicum in Engineering and Computing Education (1) - Structured application of educational theories and pedagogy through classroom teaching experiences and weekly learning community meetings. Requires students find a faculty teaching mentor. Prerequisite: EGS 6055 – Foundations of Engineering and Computing Teaching and Learning 

    • EGN-6957 Professional Development in Engineering and Computing Education Research (2) - An exploration of professional development tools and techniques within engineering and computing education research and practice. 
  • Required Engineering Pedagogy (3 credits)
    EGS-6055: Foundations of Engineering and Computing Teaching and Learning (3) - Introduction to learning theory and inclusive, learner-centered, and evidence-based pedagogy and assessment in engineering and computing, using a human-centered design approach to educational design. 
  • Research Methods/Statistics Electives (9 credits)

    Students are required to complete three research methods courses. EDS 6481 is required for all students. In conjunction with their advisor, students must choose two additional research methods courses.  

    • EDF 6481 Education Research Methods (3) - This course is designed to provide doctoral students with an in-depth analysis of the methods and procedures of research in education. Topics will include conceptualizing educational research, writing research proposals, constructing measurement instruments, collecting and analyzing qualitative and quantitative data, and drawing inferences. 

    • 2 Research methods electives 
  • Specialization Courses (9 Credits)
    In conjunction with their advisor, students must complete nine credit hours of courses that focus on an area of specialization.  
  • Seminar (0 credits)

    Students are required to register for a seminar course and attend weekly seminars hosted by the STEM Transformation Institute. 

    • EGN-6935 Seminar on STEM Education Research Weekly interactive and engaging presentations featuring faculty, students and guest speakers sharing research topics in science, technology, engineering, and mathematics (STEM) topics. Prerequisite: Graduate standing. 
  • Discipline-Specific Specialization (15 credits)

    Students must complete any five courses from one of the specialization tracks listed below. The list of courses is maintained by the unit that houses the track. This requirement can be satisfied by an appropriate Master’s degree from an accredited university. 

    • Biomedical Engineering
    • Civil Engineering 
    • Computer Engineering 
    • Computer Science 
    • Electrical Engineering
    • Engineering Management
    • Environmental Engineering 
    • Information Technology 
    • Mechanical and Materials Engineering