The College of Education is committed to creating an intellectual environment that promotes quality instruction, significant research, and professional service. Particular attention is focused on preparing professionals for diverse educational settings and on contributing to educational and pedagogical knowledge through scholarly endeavors. The College provides leadership in both the art and science of educational practice. Furthermore, the College is committed to creating an inclusive learning environment that values and promotes diversity. Collaboration among students, faculty, other professionals, and community members is essential to the College in achieving its goals. Integral to the mission is a dedication to being a premier college of education that serves our dynamic and expanding community, the state, the region, and the nation.
The College of Education provides dynamic graduate programs that engage students in field-based practice and research, offering students an exciting opportunity to study at a nationally recognized university situated within one of the fastest growing cities and school districts in the country.
Graduate programs in the College of Education include master, educational specialist, and doctoral degrees as well as post-baccalaureate programs for initial teacher licensure and additional endorsement to licensure. These programs are available in the departments of Educational & Clinical Studies, Educational Psychology & Higher Education, and Teaching & Learning. The College of Education has an outstanding graduate faculty who are nationally recognized for their scholarship and leadership in their respective disciplines.
The College of Education is accredited by the Northwest Commission on Colleges and Universities (NWCCU), which is an independent, non-profit membership organization recognized by the U.S. Department of Education as the regional authority on educational quality and institutional effectiveness of higher education institutions in the seven-state Northwest region of Alaska, Idaho, Montana, Nevada, Oregon, Utah, and Washington. It fulfills its mission by establishing accreditation criteria and evaluation procedures by which institutions are reviewed.The COE is also accredited by the National Association of School Psychologists, and the Council for the Accreditation of Counseling and Related Educational Programs. The COE is also accredited by the State of Nevada.
William Speer, College of Education Interim Dean
(1998), Professor; B.S., M.S., Ed., Northern Illinois University; Ph.D., Kent State University.
Types of Degrees Offered through the College of Education
Doctoral Degrees in Education
The College of Education offers the Doctor of Philosophy (Ph.D.) and the Doctor of Education (Ed.D.) degrees.
Doctor of Philosophy programs are designed to prepare individuals to become skilled researchers, university faculty, and leaders in school districts and community agencies.
Doctor of Education (Ed.D.) programs are designed to prepare candidates for a lifetime of professional service, effective practice, and the application of inquiry.
The following doctoral degrees are offered:
Ed.D. Curriculum & Instruction
Ph.D. Curriculum & Instruction
Educational Psychology Ph.D.
Higher Education Ph.D.
Learning & Technology Ph.D.
Special Education Ph.D.
Doctor of Philosophy in Education & Juris Doctor Dual Ph.D./J.D.
All general academic regulations of the Graduate College apply to students in doctoral programs except for specific variations identified by the respective department. In addition, individual departments may have supplementary doctoral program requirements and may limit program enrollment. Therefore, students are advised to contact their department of choice for additional information.
All general admission requirements of the Graduate College must be satisfied. Responsibility for establishing and applying supplemental admission requirements rests with each department. The Graduate College and the departments screen applications for admission. Upon recommendation of the department, the Graduate College gives the final approval of admission. Admission to each department program is limited and each department has established a deadline for completed applications. However, any approved courses taken after the application is filed may be used on the program of study if admission is accomplished. Please refer to departmental guidelines regarding this point. To apply for doctoral program admission, the applicant must:
- Hold a master’s degree from an accredited program in an area of study closely related to the chosen field of specialization;
- Present evidence of successful professional experience in a field related to the chosen field of specialization; and
- Meet all additional criteria and provide the necessary evidence of qualifications stipulated by the department in which admission is desired.
The Doctor of Philosophy (Ph.D.) and Doctor of Education (Ed.D.) degrees require a minimum of 60 to 72 semester hours beyond the master’s degree. The Doctor of Philosophy/Juris Doctor requires the completion of 80 law credit hours and a minimum of 63 education credit hours. Each department/program specifies how these semester hours are distributed. Students must maintain continuous enrollment of at least three hours each semester (except summers) throughout the program period.
Residency Requirements for Doctoral Programs
A minimum number of semester hours of credit must be earned at the University of Nevada, Las Vegas campus. Each department has specific requirements for the number of semester hours that constitute the residency requirement.
Course requirements and semester hours taken elsewhere (whether prior to or subsequent to admission) or course requirements taken at the University of Nevada, Las Vegas prior to admission may be utilized in meeting degree requirements at the discretion of each department. Acceptance of courses taken prior to admittance into the doctoral program are subject to the constraints noted in the general academic regulations of the Graduate College and the specific residence requirements of the doctoral program.
The Advisor and the Student’s Committee
At the time a student is admitted, the department must designate a temporary program advisor who is a graduate faculty member of the department. The Graduate College must approve the selection of the student’s committee when the student has completed a specific number of semester hours determined by the department and committee. The committee guidelines are as follows:
- The chair and/or co-chairs must be a member(s) of the doctoral faculty designated by the department. It may be the individual(s) who has served as the temporary advisor.
- The committee must include at least two members of the doctoral faculty in the student’s department. A representative who is a member of the graduate faculty at the University of Nevada, Las Vegas and who is from a department other than the student’s must serve on the student’s committee.
- The temporary program advisor is responsible for the guidance of the student in course selection and general advisement up to the time of appointment of the student’s committee. The chair/co-chairs of the student’s committee will have primary responsibility for developing, in consultation with the student, a program of study based on the stated requirements and tailored to meet the student’s degree objectives. The committee is responsible for conducting and evaluating the comprehensive and final examination and approving the dissertation topic.
The Program of Studies
When the student has completed the minimum number of semester hours specified by the committee, the program of studies must be filed with the Graduate College. Changes in the approved program require approval by the student, the student’s committee, and the Graduate College.
The Doctoral Core Requirement
Each doctoral student will be required to complete a core of studies, which is selected and approved by the student’s committee. The content of the core will include but not be limited to the following:
- Analysis and evaluation of major issues confronting American education that are of significance to all professional educators and/or historical, philosophical, or social foundations of American education.
- Research concepts and tools that are appropriate to the needs of the student as a consumer of research-based information, as a user of concepts and tools in the dissertation project and as an informed conductor of applied studies. At least six semester course credits are required to be taken by each doctoral student in research methods, interpretation, and/or application. Courses are to be selected by the student’s committee from an approved list of courses provided by the department.
- The Qualifying Examination
- Some departments require a qualifying examination as a part of the screening process for admission or for diagnostic purposes to be given shortly after admission. Students should consult the specific department for more information
The Qualifying Examination
Some departments require a qualifying examination as a part of the screening process for admission or for diagnostic purposes to be given shortly after admission. Students should consult the specific department for more information.
The Comprehensive Examination
A comprehensive examination must be conducted by the committee during the term in which all work on the program, except the dissertation, will be completed. The examination will be scheduled, announced, and conducted according to the procedures established by each department and the Graduate College. The comprehensive examinations must be completed successfully before the student is advanced to candidacy. Satisfactory performance on the examination requires unanimous approval of the Committee.
Advancement to Candidacy
The student will be advanced to candidacy immediately following their proposal meeting. Students may register for three dissertation credits before they have been formally advanced to candidacy. Advancement to candidacy must be approved unanimously by the committee. The degree program must be completed within six years. If these contingencies are not met, the student will be separated from the Graduate College.
The dissertation topic will involve scholarly, practical consideration of some professional problem designed to contribute to the improvement of educational practice or the body of educational theory. The dissertation should be related to the student’s individual program of study, and it must be approved by the committee. The student is referred to department and Graduate College regulations governing the preparation and submission of the dissertation for all technical matters such as form, style, and deadlines for filing.
Following completion of the dissertation, an oral defense will be conducted by the committee. It will be scheduled, announced and conducted according to the procedures and deadlines noted by the department and the Graduate College. Satisfactory performance on the examination requires unanimous approval of the committee.
Application for Graduation
Formal application for graduation must be made according to the procedures noted by the Graduate College.
Master’s and Educational Specialist Degrees
Each department offers the Master of Education and/or Master of Science degree, and several departments also offer the Educational Specialist degree. Due to the unique nature of these programs, each department provides information specific to these graduate degrees.
The following master’s and educational specialist degrees are offered:
Curriculum & Instruction Ed.S.
M.Ed. & M.S. Curriculum & Instruction
Educational Psychology M.S.
Special Education Ed.S.
The College of Education provides programs to meet the needs of persons who hold the baccalaureate degree and who wish to be licensed in the State of Nevada. Graduate Licensure Programs are offered for persons who wish to pursue a license and/or a master’s degree while obtaining a license in administration or in elementary, secondary, special or postsecondary education. Individuals interested in graduate level licensure possibilities are encouraged to contact the appropriate department.