This is the preliminary (or launch) version of the 2024-2025 VCU Bulletin. Courses that expose students to cutting-edge content and transformative learning may be added and notification of additional program approvals may be received prior to finalization. General education program content is also subject to change. The final edition and full PDF version will include these updates and will be available in August prior to the beginning of the fall semester.

Program goal

The research, assessment and evaluation concentration is designed for individuals who want to develop skills to undertake, use and teach research, assessment and evaluation. Emphasis is placed on developing proficiency in quantitative, qualitative and mixed methods modes of inquiry and providing students with expertise to study varied educational and social research questions. Students select a focus in either research or evaluation.

Student learning outcomes

Education core outcomes

  1. Knowledge of foundations of educational research and design: Students will demonstrate an appropriate level of knowledge of theoretical and social issues of scholarly inquiry, policy and ethics of educational research and will demonstrate an appropriate level of knowledge and skills essential to designing, conducting and interpreting qualitative and quantitative design research.
  2. Application of leadership, research and/or professional skills: Graduates will engage in and practice leadership, research and/or professional skills in a professional placement in a school, agency or corporate setting (e.g., school, agency, corporation).
  3. Research design and implementation: Graduates will design and conduct original educational research, including developing novel educational research questions, demonstrating proficiency in selecting the most appropriate study designs, demonstrating proficiency in data collection, analysis and synthesis within the identified theoretical/ conceptual framework of study.  
  4. Oral and written communication skills: Students will demonstrate effective oral communication skills, framing questions appropriately and implementing active listening skills, developing effective presentations with respect to content, organization and appropriate use of language. Students will demonstrate proficiency in academic writing, including writing for publications and presentations.

Research, assessment and evaluation concentration-specific outcome

  1. Students will demonstrate general and applied knowledge of different theoretical/conceptual approaches that are used in research methodology, assessment and evaluation.
  2. Students will write succinct, coherent and well-conceived research/evaluation proposals on a selected topic or program as required in core courses.
  3. Students will demonstrate ability to apply rigorous methodologies (quantitative, qualitative and/or mixed) through designing a research study, collecting and analyzing data, and writing up findings.
  4. Students will articulate the relative strengths and weaknesses associated with different research methodologies in general and in the context of formal and informal educational settings and will demonstrate proficiency in pairing specific methodologies and approaches with different research aims.
  5. Students will demonstrate ability to communicate scholarship to professional audiences (e.g., academic, K12 educators) in education and related fields.

VCU Graduate Bulletin, VCU Graduate School and general academic policies and regulations for all graduate students in all graduate programs

The VCU Graduate Bulletin website documents the official admission and academic rules and regulations that govern graduate education for all graduate programs at the university. These policies are established by the graduate faculty of the university through their elected representatives to the University Graduate Council.

It is the responsibility of all graduate students, both on- and off-campus, to be familiar with the VCU Graduate Bulletin as well as the Graduate School website and academic regulations in individual school and department publications and on program websites. However, in all cases, the official policies and procedures of the University Graduate Council, as published on the VCU Graduate Bulletin and Graduate School websites, take precedence over individual program policies and guidelines.

Visit the academic regulations section for additional information on academic regulations for graduate students.

Degree candidacy requirements

A graduate student admitted to a program or concentration requiring a final research project, work of art, thesis or dissertation, must qualify for continuing master’s or doctoral status according to the degree candidacy requirements of the student’s graduate program. Admission to degree candidacy, if applicable, is a formal statement by the graduate student’s faculty regarding the student’s academic achievements and the student’s readiness to proceed to the final research phase of the degree program.

Graduate students and program directors should refer to the following degree candidacy policy as published in the VCU Graduate Bulletin for complete information and instructions.

Visit the academic regulations section for additional information on degree candidacy requirements.

Graduation requirements

As graduate students approach the end of their academic programs and the final semester of matriculation, they must make formal application to graduate. No degrees will be conferred until the application to graduate has been finalized.

Graduate students and program directors should refer to the following graduation requirements as published in the Graduate Bulletin for a complete list of instructions and a graduation checklist.

Visit the academic regulations section for additional information on graduation requirements.

Apply online today.

Admission requirements

Degree: Semester(s) of entry: Deadline dates: Test requirements:
Ph.D. Summer or fall Jan 15 GRE optional

In addition to the general admission requirements of the VCU Graduate School, the following represent the minimum requirements for admission:

  1. Master’s degree
  2. Three letters of recommendation addressing the student’s potential for graduate study in education
  3. Statement of intent
  4. Transcripts of all previous college work
  5. A personal interview and additional writing sample (may be requested)
  6. Professional vitae/resume

If an applicant chooses to submit a GRE score, it will be considered holistically with other application materials. If an applicant chooses not to submit a GRE score, that decision will have no impact on the application review.

Please visit the School of Education website for further information.

Degree requirements

In addition to the VCU Graduate School graduation requirements, students are required to complete course work in core and elective courses.

  1. Credit hour requirements: Students are required to complete a minimum of 60 credit hours.
  2. Grade requirements: Receipt of a grade of C or below in three courses constitutes automatic dismissal from the program. Courses with a grade below C cannot be used to satisfy degree requirements.
  3. Externship requirement: Students must complete an approved externship.
  4. Examination requirements: Students must pass both a qualifying examination early in the program and a comprehensive examination near the end of the program.
  5. Dissertation requirements: Students must complete and defend a research dissertation.

Curriculum requirements

Course Title Hours
EDUS 702Foundations of Educational Research and Doctoral Scholarship I3
EDUS 703Foundations of Educational Research and Doctoral Scholarship II3
EDUS 608Educational Statistics3
EDUS 710Quantitative Research Design3
EDUS 711Qualitative Methods and Analysis3
• Collaborative research3
Collaborative Scholarship
Directed Research
• Research elective3
EDUC 700Externship3
EDUC 899Dissertation Research (minimum of six credit hours)6
EDUS 890Dissertation Seminar3
Concentration courses
EDUS 661Educational Evaluation: Models and Designs3
EDUS 662Educational Measurement and Evaluation3
EDUS 663Applied Multivariate Statistics in Education3
EDUS 664Multilevel Modeling in Education3
EDUS 667Applied Structural Equation Modeling in Education3
EDUS 668Applied Machine Learning in Education Research3
EDUS 712Mixed Methods Research3
EDUS 713Critical Methods in Educational Research for Justice and Equity3
EDUS 714Qualitative Data Analysis3
Total Hours60

The minimum number of graduate credit hours required for this degree is 60.

Students who complete the requirements for this concentration will receive a Doctor of Philosophy in Education.

Enrollment Management
(804) 828-3382

Additional contact
Kamden Strunk, Ph.D.
Associate professor and graduate program director
(804) 828-1332

Program website: