ECED PhD Program Information

Early Childhood Program Vision

The vision of the early childhood program is to engage in and encourage lifelong learning and produce teachers, researchers and leaders who advocate for and create quality early childhood experiences in early care and education.

Early Childhood Education

The PhD program in Early Childhood Education will develop scholars and leaders in the field of early childhood. The program is guided by the conceptual framework of the Claudius G. Clemmer College of Education, at East Tennessee State University, and the principles of the National Association for the Education of Young Children (NAEYC).

We believe in the vision of NAEYC for educating early childhood leaders. Our candidates will demonstrate the knowledge and skills of the NAEYC Core Standards for Professional Preparation. Upon completing the program, the doctoral candidates are expected to demonstrate:
Knowledge and response to culture, language, and ethnicity;
Teaching knowledge to become early childhood leaders/professionals; Knowledge and application of NAEYC ethical principles;

  • Ability to access and integrate a wide range of professional resources leading to mastery of relevant theory and research;
  • Inquiry skills in conducting research;
  • Flexible, diverse skills to work collaboratively and effectively with others;
  • A mastery level of oral, written, and technological communication skills;
  • Comprehensive skills as an advocate for children and their families.
For information on a PhD in Early Childhood Education please review the doctoral program brochure (Click here or on the brochure photo to access) and our Early Childhood Doctoral Program Course of Study.

Faculty Research Interests

  • Early Childhood STEM; Physics Pre-K through Age 8
  • Problem Solving in Toddlers
  • DefenseTeacher and Child Interactions
  • The Primary Learning Environment
  • Empirical Studies of Emergent Curriculum
  • Environmental Attitudes, Knowledge, & Behaviors of Young Children
  • Technology and Young Children
  • Early Childhood Literacy
  • Classroom Management
  • Assessment in Early Childhood Education
  • Mentoring
  • Teacher Dispositions
  • Pre-Service and New In-Service Teachers
  • Self-Regulation in Infants/Toddlers
  • Temperament in Infant/Toddlers
  • Conflict Resolution in Young Children

Research focus of current PhD students

  • Working Title: Professional Learning Communities as a Model of Professional Development for Focusing on the Instructional Practice Teachers Use to Teaching Developmental Writing
  • Working Title: An Exploratory Critical Study of Questioning Strategies Posed by Early Childhood Teachers During Literacy Blocks
  • Working Title: Determining if Grandparents as Primary Caregivers of Pre-K through Third
  • Grade Students In Northeast Tennessee Are Served Effectively
  • Working Title: Preschool teachers' attitudes toward outdoor education programs for young children

PhD Fellowships

Inquire about the availability of PhD Fellowships when applying. Typically fellowships are offered for three-year periods

 


 Curriculum

The PhD requires 69-72 semester hours distributed as follows:Students engaging in diversity drumming activity

Core Courses

  • ECED-6100 Hist. and Theoretical Basis for ECE - 3 credit hours
  • ECED-6200 Implications/Trends & Dvlp. of Children- 3 credit hours
  • ECED-6300 Soc. & Cult. Diversity in Families- 3 credit hours
  • ECED-6400 Seminar in Prof. Dvlp. and Leadership- 3 credit hours

Specialization

  • ECED-6600 Processes of Language & Literacy Learning- 3 credit hours
  • ECED-6610 Teaching & Learning Env. & Impacts- 3 credit hours
  • ECED-6620 Leadership, Admin. & Supervision in ECE- 3 credit hours
  • ECED-6630 Paradigms of Inquiry-Based Constructivism- 3 credit hours
  • ECED-6640 Critical Analysis of Brain Research- 3 credit hours

Collateral

The three collateral courses must be taken in the same academic area, as determined by the student, doctoral advisor, and collateral area advisor.

Other Credits

  • ELPA-7810 Educational Statistics- 3 credit hours
  • ELPA-7811 Quantitative Research- 3 credit hours
  • ELPA-7812 Qualitative Research- 3 credit hours
  • ELPA-7814 Analysis and Interp. of Research Designs- 3 credit hours
  • ELPA-7950 Advanced Research in EC and Seminar- 3 credit hours
  • ELPA-7000 Apprenticeship in Research (*required) - 3 credit hours
  • ELPA-7960 Dissertation (3 to 6 hours – repeatable) - 3 credit hours
  • ELPA-7990 Readings and Research (1 to 3 hrs – variable credit, if needed)

Apprenticeship

  • ECED-7000* Apprenticeship in Research (required as indicated under research)

*Choose one or two Apprenticeships in addition to ECED 7000 for a total of 3-6 hrs.

  • ECED-7001* Apprenticeship in University Teaching- 3 credit hours
  • ECED-7002* Apprenticeship in Dvlp. of Teachers - 3 credit hours
  • ECED-7003* Apprenticeship in Early Intervention - 3 credit hours
  • ECED-7004* Apprenticeship in Early Childhood - 3 credit hours

 

ETSU Early Childhood Program's First PhD Graduate - December 2012

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ETSU Early Childhood Faculty pose with Dr. Helen Lane, the first recipient of the ETSU Early Childhood Program PhD. Dr. Helen Lane, the first graduate of the ETSU Early Childhood Doctoral Program poses with her dissertation chair, Dr. Lissy Gloeckler. Dr. Helen Lane poses with members of her dissertation committee.

Click here to read an article about Dr. Helen Lane receiving the first ETSU doctoral degree in Early Childhood in the Johnson City Press