Aylin AykanatPostdoctoral Research Assoc
Marc BoudreauASSISTANT PROFESSOR
Kathleen BowePostdoctoral Research Assoc
Christine CaputoASSOCIATE PROFESSOR
Margaret GreensladeASSOCIATE PROFESSOR
Anyin LiASSISTANT PROFESSOR
Nate OldenhuisAssistant Professor
Roy PlanalpASSOCIATE PROFESSOR
John TsavalasASSOCIATE PROFESSOR
Katharine WinansSENIOR LECTURER
Chemistry: Chemistry Education (Ph.D.)
Chemistry: Chemistry Education (Ph.D.)
Why pursue a Ph.D. in chemistry education at UNH?
Our purpose is to prepare professionals who will change the field of teaching and learning in chemistry.This requires developing a deep knowledge of chemistry, fluency with the literature and methods of education,and skill with research tools from the cognitive and social sciences. You will be prepared for careers involving college-level chemistry teaching, STEM curriculum design, student assessment and STEM professional development. You will conduct original research leading to submission of a dissertation, and develop strong written and oral communication skills necessary for advanced work in education, research and academia.
UNH has one of the early national Ph.D. programs in chemistry education. You will engage with the program like all other chemistry graduate students—taking a small set of core advanced chemistry courses and participating in master’s-level chemistry research. Some students may enter the program with a master’s degree, courses, and research experience already in hand. Within the first year, you will begin to participate in chemistry education group meetings and to plan your pathway for study of human cognition, qualitative research methods, and quantitative statistical methods. Your research could involve interviews to understand how a few students conceive of molecules or solve chemistry problems. Or you might design and test a new learning approach within a chemistry course of hundreds. There is a variety of interesting research questions in this relatively new field of study. Financial support is typically available through teaching assistantships.
Potential career areas
- Chemistry professor
- College laboratory coordinator
- Curriculum designer
- Educational program assessment coordinator
- Teaching and learning center professional development provider
Curriculum & Requirements
The Ph.D. Option in Chemistry Education is designed for students who plan a career at the interface of Science and Education (e.g. discipline-based education research, educational program assessment, STEM curricular design, chemistry teaching, etc.). The rigorous program involves coursework in Chemistry, Psychology and Education and original research in Chemistry Education, leading to the submission of a dissertation. Students with a research-based MS (or equivalent) will be admitted directly to the program. Students with a BS (or equivalent) will first obtain an MS degree, carrying out original laboratory-based research with a faculty mentor, and submitting a thesis. The program has a focus on developing strong writing and oral communication skills. Financial support is typically available through a teaching assistantship.
Ph.D. Option in Chemistry Education
- Demonstration of a broad understanding of undergraduate chemistry by passing a series of basic examinations or satisfactory performance in approved courses.
- Demonstration of chemistry laboratory research proficiency by completing a thesis-based M.S. (or equivalent) either at UNH or another university.
- Satisfactory performance in a series of courses in science education, cognition, and qualitative/quantitative research methods.
- Attendance at Department seminars.
- Attendance at Graduate Research Update sessions and presentation once annually from year 2 onward.
- Satisfactory presentation of a Research Progress Report in the second year of residence,
- One oral presentation at a regional or technical conference, and one oral or poster presentation at the UNH Graduate Research Symposium.
- Preparation and oral defense of an original research prospectus in the third year of residence. Successful completion of the research proposal defense enables the student to advance to candidacy.
- Preparation, public presentation, and oral defense of a written dissertation.
- GPA of 3.0 or higher required to graduate.
- Please contact the department for additional information on this option.
Faculty Research Advisor and Dissertation Committee
Students select a research advisor during the ﬁrst semester in the program after interviewing at least three faculty members. During each semester thereafter, students conduct independent research under the supervision of the Faculty Research Advisor. In the second year of residence and before the Research Progress Report, a dissertation committee is selected. This committee evaluates the student's Research Progress Report and the Research Proposal Defense. Once the Research Proposal Defense has been passed and the student advances to candidacy, a fifth committee member is selected and added to the Dissertation Committee to evaluate the Dissertation Defense.
|Required department courses|
|CHEM 800||Introduction to Chemistry Teaching and Research Practices||1|
|CHEM 801||Modern Tools for Researchers in the Chemical Sciences||1|
|CHEM 802||Critical Thinking for Chemists||1|
|CHEM 803||Creative Thinking for Chemists||1|
|CHEM 995||Colloquium (CHEM 995F Colloquium: Chemistry Education)||1-4|
|CHEM 999||Doctoral Research||0|
|3 Chemistry CORE courses in a sub-discipline recommended by research advisor or MS degree|
Choose 2 courses (see examples below)
|PSYC 705||Tests and Measurement||4|
|PSYC 805||Research Methodology and Statistics I||4|
|PSYC 806||Research Methodology and Statistics II||4|
|PSYC 907||Research Methods and Statistics III||4|
|EDUC 978||Applied Regression Analysis in Educational Research||4|
|EDUC 979||Applied Multilevel Modeling||4|
|EDUC 981||Quantitative Inquiry: Methods and Techniques of Educational Research||4|
|MATH 835||Statistical Methods for Research||3|
|MATH 836||Advanced Statistical Modeling||3|
|MATH 839||Applied Regression Analysis||3|
Choose 1 course (example below)
|EDUC 904||Qualitative Inquiry in Research||4|
|EDUC 982||Qualitative Fieldwork & Data Analysis||4|
|SOC 904||Sociological Methods IV: Qualitative and Historical Research Methods||4|
Choose 1 course (examples below)
|PSYC 783||Cognitive Development||4|
|PSYC 710||Visual Perception||4|
|PSYC 712||Psychology of Language||4|
|PSYC 716||Cognitive Neuroscience||4|
|PSYC 731||Brain and Behavior||4|
|PSYC 914||Advanced Seminar in Cognition||4|
|PSYC #917||Advanced Seminar in Sensory and Perceptual Processes||4|
All graduates will be able to:
- Comprehend, plan and conduct advanced research under the guidance of a research advisor while developing their intellectual independence that demonstrates scholarship.
- Develop the ability to design and conduct experiments safely, as well as to analyze and interpret data.
- Develop and demonstrate oral and written communication skills to enable effective communication in all aspects of their professional career. This would include presentations, developing papers for published works and grant writing.
- Develop and apply theories, methodologies, and knowledge to address questions and resolve problems in the field of chemistry and in associated interdisciplinary projects.
- Develop the capacity of function and work effectively alone and in a team environment.
- Develop professional and ethic responsibility and follow this throughout their careers in the field or in academia.
- Investigate research ideas related to the content, context, and human experience of chemistry learning.
- Understand and implement research methodologies from education, psychology, and sociology.
Applications must be completed by the following deadlines in order to be reviewed for admission:
- Fall: Feb. 15 (for funding); April 1 (final)
- Spring: Dec. 1
- Summer: N/A
- Special: N/A
Application fee: $65
New England Regional: No
Accelerated Masters Eligible: No
New Hampshire Residents
Students claiming in-state residency must also submit a Proof of Residence Form. This form is not required to complete your application, but you will need to submit it after you are offered admission or you will not be able to register for classes.
If you attended UNH after September 1, 1991, and have indicated so on your online application, we will retrieve your transcript internally; this includes UNH-Durham, UNH-Manchester and UNH Non-Degree work.
If you did not attend UNH, or attended prior to September 1, 1991, then you must upload a copy (PDF) of your official transcript in the application form. International transcripts must be translated into English.
If admitted, you must then request an official transcript be sent directly to our office from the Registrar's Office of each college/university attended. We accept transcripts both electronically and in hard copy:
- Electronic Transcripts: Please have your institution send the transcript directly to email@example.com. Please note that we can only accept copies sent directly from the institution.
- Paper Transcripts: Please send hard copies of transcripts to: UNH Graduate School, Thompson Hall- 105 Main Street, Durham, NH 03824. You may request transcripts be sent to us directly from the institution or you may send them yourself as long as they remain sealed in the original university envelope.
Transcripts from all previous post-secondary institutions must be submitted and applicants must disclose any previous academic or disciplinary sanctions that resulted in their temporary or permanent separation from a previous post-secondary institution. If it is found that previous academic or disciplinary separations were not disclosed, applicants may face denial and admitted students may face dismissal from their academic program.
Letters of recommendation: 3 required
Recommendation letters submitted by relatives or friends, as well as letters older than one year, will not be accepted.
Prepare a brief but carefully crafted statement that includes: 1) Research experience. State the goals of your previous research and accomplishments to date. Including a list of publications, presentations, and awards within the Experience and Background section of the application is encouraged; however, please do not send actual publications or presentations. 2) Clear reasons why you wish to perform graduate work in chemistry education research. Include your immediate and long-range objectives. 3) Those UNH Chemistry faculty whose research interests you and why. If you do no yet hold a research-based M.S. degree, be sure to include those faculty whose laboratory-based research interests you. 4) Additional information that will enhance the selection committee’s understanding of your personal background and life experiences, including educational (e.g. teaching and leadership experience), cultural, familial, or other opportunities or challenges.
Statements must be included with your submitted application.
All applicants are encouraged to contact programs directly to discuss program-specific application questions.
Prospective international students are required to submit TOEFL, IELTS, or equivalent examination scores. English Language Exams may be waived if English is your first language. If you wish to request a waiver, then please visit our Test Scores webpage for more information.
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