Pursue excellence with the Doctor of Philosophy (Ph.D.) in Special Education at the University of Florida, a premier full-time, on-campus program crafted to equip future leaders with the expertise to support individuals with disabilities in educational contexts.

Our program offers doctoral students a wealth of scholarly opportunities, enabling them to engage in rigorous research and teaching at both undergraduate and graduate levels. With a track record of success, our doctoral graduates thrive as faculty in higher education and hold pivotal leadership positions in agencies, school districts, and various academic settings.

Program Overview

Our Ph.D. in Special Education program is for aspiring researchers and educators dedicated to advancing scholarship that tackles vital societal challenges. We believe in empowering our students to be active contributors to academic communities. Career goals for prospective students include entering the academy as professors, instructors, or researchers. If your goals differ, we also offer an online Special Education Ed.D. program. For more information about the Special Education Ph.D. program, please contact Dr. Melinda Leko.

 

Program Highlights

Students admitted to doctoral programs in the Special Education program area will major in special education. Programs of study are developed collaboratively by the doctoral student and must be approved by the supervisory committee. The program of study consists of a minimum of 90 semester hours beyond the baccalaureate degree and must include required courses as described below.

Ph.D. in Special Education Core Curriculum

Our carefully crafted curriculum provides a comprehensive foundation for success. Mandatory courses are available both online and face-to-face, enhancing the collaborative learning experience. The program’s requirements include electives, quantitative and qualitative research courses, and dedicated dissertation hours. The Ph.D. in Special Education is a full-time, on-campus program at the UF College of Education in Gainesville, Florida.

Transformative Journey

Join us on a transformative journey where you’ll learn to shape the future of education. Dive into scholarship and become a leader in the field with our Ph.D. in Special Education program. Your path to academic excellence begins here.

Ready to unlock your potential? Apply now to start your journey.

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    Ph.D. Program Curriculum

    Students admitted to doctoral programs in the Special Education program area will major in special education. Programs of study are developed collaboratively by the doctoral student and must be approved by the supervisory committee. The program of study consists of a minimum of 90 semester hours beyond the baccalaureate degree and must include required courses as described below.

    Required Courses

    All courses are 8-week online offerings except for seminars, research courses, and dissertation research that are full semester courses.

    • EEX 6745; Trends 1: Historical and Theoretical Foundations of Disability in Education
    • EEX 7934; Trends 2: Trends in Special Education 
    • EEX 7304; Research 1: Introduction to Field of Inquiry in Special Education
    • EEX 7303; Research 2: Inquiry in Special Education: Analysis of the Literature
    • EEX 6936; Research 3: Inquiry in Special Education: Proposal Development

    Research Requirements

    Qualitative Methods

    • EDF 6475–Qualitative Foundations of Educational Research (4)
    • EDF 7483–Qualitative data collection (3) Prereq: EDF 6475
    • EDF 7479–Qualitative data analysis (3) Prereq: EDF 6475
    • EDF 7639–Research in Educational Sociology (3) Prereq: EDF 6475

    Quantitative Methods

    • EDF 6403–Quantitative Foundations of Educational Research (6) OR,
    • EDF 6400–Quantitative Foundations in Educational Research: Overview (3), and
    • EDF 6402—Quantitative Foundations in Educational Research: Inferential Statistics (3).
    • EDF 6436–Theory of Measurement (4) Prereq: EDF 6403 or 6400 & 6402 o EDF 6471–Survey Design and Analysis in Educational Research (3) Prereq: EDF 6403 or 6400 & 6402
    • EDF 6481–Quantitative Research Methods in Education (4) Prereq: EDF 6403 or 6400 & 6402
    • EDF 7405–Advanced Quantitative Foundations of Educational Research (4); Prereq: EDF 6403 or 6400 & 6402
    • EDF 7491–Evaluation of Educational Products and Systems (3) Prereq: EDF 6403 or 6400 & 6402
    • EDF 7412–Structural Equation Models (3) Prereq: EDF 6403 or 6400 & 6402; and EDF 7405
    • EDF 7439–Item Response Theory (3) Prereq: EDF 6403 or 6400 & 6402; and EDF 6436
    • EDF 7474–Multilevel Models (3) Prereq: EDF 6403 or 6400 & 6402; and 7405
    • EDF 7432–Multivariate Analysis in Educational Research (3) Prereq: EDF 6403 or 6400 & 6402; and 7405

    Electives

    • EEX 6296: Differentiated Instruction
    • TBD from other EEX, Methods, or AOS

    Program Requirement

    • A bachelor’s degree from an accredited U.S. college or university, or a degree deemed equivalent by the University of Florida Office of Admissions.
    • A minimum grade point average of 3.0 upper-division (last 60 credits) undergraduate work.
    • An acceptable grade point average for previous graduate work.

    Program Highlight

    Entry: December 1st
    Typical Course Load: 9-12 credits per semester
    Full-Time/Part-Time: Full-Time
    Application Deadline: See dates published by the college
    Average Class Size: 20-27
    Program Completion: 3-4 years