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STEM Education

The STEM Education PhD program at UMass Dartmouth helps address the national shortage of essential STEM educators and the need for better STEM education teaching practices. Doctoral students gain in-depth knowledge, robust interdisciplinary research skills, and a variety of practical experiences. The STEM Education PhD offers concentrations in Mathematics Education and Science Education.

In this doctoral program, you will develop the knowledge and skills needed to:

  • reconstruct, appropriate, and develop mathematical and scientific knowledge
  • explore approaches that emerge from the study of the research literature
  • write original research that represents your own contribution to knowledge
  • use critical-thinking skills to deal with transformation of knowledge
  • formulate and design solutions to complex educational problems


Your research projects involve real-world situations ranging from local schools to higher education departments and other formal and informal learning settings. Your advisors will work with you as you conduct, publish, and present your own research throughout the program.

Doctoral students can explore questions about:

  • how to improve STEM education at the K-12 level
  • how to promote better learning in STEM fields
  • how to engage more K-20 students in STEM-related fields
  • how to prepare teachers to better teach STEM content
  • how to develop materials to support teaching and learning in STEM fields

The Kaput Center

UMass Dartmouth has a long-standing tradition of leadership in STEM with its nationally renowned Kaput Center for Research and Innovation in STEM Education. The Kaput Center fosters a spirit of innovation among the faculty, graduate students and educational and scientific institutions, industry, and federal agencies. All benefit from the expertise of UMassD faculty and graduates and their research.

  • 18 credits of introductory coursework to develop your knowledge of research tools, methodologies and theories
  • 18 credits of preparatory coursework that refines and focuses your understanding of the research process
  • 36 hours of doctoral work, 12 of which are doctoral coursework and 24 credits of dissertation research

Student Success

Travis Weiland
Travis Weiland, PhD '17

Accepts tenure-track position at Appalachia State University

A limited number of assistantships are available on a competitive basis. This award is subject to the work needs of the position and department, your satisfactory performance of duties, your academic record, and availability of funds, and may be subject to change.

Learn more about assistantships at UMass Dartmouth

University requirements for graduate admissions

  • Submit an application via the online portal. Be sure to provide your full legal name and to capitalize the first letter of all proper nouns.
  • Pay non-refundable $60 application fee (American Express, Discover, MasterCard or Visa) via the online portal. For Nursing applicants, the non-refundable application fee is $75.
  • Statement of Purpose, minimum 300 words. Unless otherwise indicated in the program requirement details, indicate your graduate study objectives, research interests and experience, and business or industry experience if applicable. If you are applying for a teaching or research assistantship, include any special skills or experience that would assist us in making assistantship decisions.
  • Resume
  • Transcripts for all post-secondary institutions attended (regardless of whether a credential is earned or not). Unofficial transcripts are accepted for admissions application review, once enrolled a final official transcript is required. International students applying for Data Science must submit semester-by-semester transcripts as well as consolidated transcripts. 
  • Many programs have specific recommendations/requirements, please see the additional program-specific requirements for more information.
  • International students: official TOEFL, IELTS, Pearson PTE or Duolingo (if accepted by program) score. Unofficial scores are accepted for admissions application review, once enrolled official scores are required and must be sent by the testing agency (copies/scans not accepted). This is required of any applicant who did not earn a bachelor’s degree or higher degree from an accredited academic institution in the U.S. or accepted English-speaking country, see exemptions for more details. The Duolingo test is not accepted for the following programs: Art Education, Biology/Marine Biology, Luso-Afro-Brazilian Studies & Theory, Marine Science and Technology (MS, PSM, PhD), Nursing (MS, DNP, PhD), Portuguese Studies, Professional Writing and Communication, Psychology (ABA, Clinical, Research), and Public Policy.

Program-specific requirements

Candidates must submit the required application materials, university requirements and program-specific requirements, for consideration.

  • GRE is waived
  • 3 letters of recommendation. Applicants will be required to provide the recommenders name and email address so we can contact the recommender for the letter of recommendation.

Program deadlines

STEM Education Faculty

Beste Gucler
Christopher Clinton
Maureen Hall
Shakhnoza Kayumova
Sheila Macrine
Stephen Witzig
Walter Stroup

Explore more

Course descriptions, schedules and requirements