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Education

Human Development & Learning

PhD in Educational Studies, Low-Residency

Explore factors that affect human development across the lifespan.

If your goal is a career serving individuals in an academic, social, or political context, such as community and social services, correctional facilities, colleges, or governmental agencies, this highly regarded program will help you get there.

You’ll advance your knowledge of the social, psychological, and biological factors that affect the development of human beings, with particular emphasis on adults. You’ll learn theories of human development, learning, and cognitive and emotional development. Explore developmental neuroscience, adult learning, adult development, and mental health. 

You'll also acquire a deep understanding of the interdisciplinary field of developmental science. Gain insights into how individuals change over time in real-life contexts. Examine culture and conflict, and organizational development and change.

During your studies, you'll conduct novel research and create new knowledge, all drawn from your personal and professional experiences. With faculty mentorship, you'll create a dissertation that explores your area of scholarly interest and inquiry. We'll encourage you to engage in the evidence-based thinking and self-reflection that will foster development throughout your career.

And by joining this low-residency program, you'll join a close-knit community of diverse learners who co-construct knowledge and support each other throughout residencies and online coursework.

Program Structure

Low-residency PhD program

45 Credits
PhD in Human Development & Learning 2020
Students entering our PhD program this year will take the following program.
Summer 2020 Residency Update for New and Returning Students

For the well-being of our community, and in keeping with federal and state health and safety guidelines related to COVID-19, we have made some changes to our upcoming residencies for this program.

New Students

We have decided to delay Residency I of our new cohorts until the spring and launch the fall semester with two required online courses: Nature of Inquiry and Quantitative Research Methods. Program directors and faculty advisors will meet with new students during the fall semester.

Returning Students

Returning students will engage in a virtual summer residency, completing core courses and other benchmarks. While we will miss being together in our much-loved face-to-face residency, we look forward to seeing each other in our virtual courses and community gatherings. We will communicate more details in the coming weeks.

PhD residency students at long desk
Dissertation

After receiving senior advisor and doctoral committee approval for your qualifying paper in the second year, you will be eligible to write your dissertation proposal and dissertation. The oral defense of your dissertation is open to the public. Year three is devoted to helping you write your dissertation proposal and dissertation. The program of study concludes with a public defense of your dissertation, doctoral committee approval and graduation.

Gain Skills and Expertise
Our PhD in Educational Studies program prepares you to:
Charles River with Boston skyline in the background

Cambridge, MA

Cambridge is located in the heart of a dynamic urban area near a variety of institutions and organizations, where you'll benefit from a unique concentration of diverse learners and teachers from all over the world. We are close to a number of other universities, where our doctoral students routinely participate in research and educational events.

$88,134
Average salary for education professionals with a doctoral degree in New England (Source: Burning Glass Labor Insight)
#1
Superintendents and other hiring managers across Massachusetts prefer to hire Lesley graduates. With a combination of theory and practice, our graduates are prepared for leadership positions on day one. (Source: Radius Global Market Research)
Top Schools
Massachusetts ranks as the best state to work in education, with some of the highest performing schools and best salaries in the country, according to US News.
Stephen Gould
Dr. Stephen Gould
Steve is director of the Human Development and Learning and Educational Leadership PhD programs. He has over 30 years of experience as an assistant superintendent, principal, and teacher, and served on the Massachusetts Elementary School Principals Association for over 10 years. His expertise includes leadership development, organizational development, team building, strategic planning, and executive coaching.
Careers
Where You'll Work
Graduates of our PhD in Human Development and Learning are prepared for rewarding careers in a range of settings, including:
PhD in Educational Studies Programs

Faculty

Total approximate cost for this PhD degree program. Tuition and fees are for the 2020–2021 academic year.
Human Development & Learning
  • Tuition
    $1,050/credit x 45
    $47,250
  • Fees
    PhD Matriculation Fees
    $8,970
    Residency Fees
    $1,050
    Registration Fees
    $360
    Degree Completion Fee
    $75
  • Total
Estimated Cost

Review all graduate tuition and fees, and what they cover.

Tuition and fees are subject to change each year, effective June 1.

Apply Now

Your degree is an investment, and we're committed to ensuring its value. That's why we offer the best education programs in Massachusetts, at competitive tuition rates.
We'll help ensure your degree is as affordable as possible. Use our step-by-step guide to apply for federal and university funding. Scholarships, grants, Work-Study, and loans. It’s all right here.

Next steps to apply

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