The University of North Carolina at Greensboro

School of Education - Educational Leadership and Cultural Foundations

Doctorate in Philosophy (Ph.D.) in Educational Studies with a Concentration in Cultural Studies


The Department of Educational Leadership and Cultural Foundations offers a graduate program of study leading to a 60 hour Ph.D. degree in Educational Studies.

The program in cultural studies is concerned with the breadth and depth of what is fundamental to educational practice-its ideology, philosophical assumptions, and moral claims-and is grounded in the study of education and culture with a particular interest in the integration of the arts, humanities, social analysis, and moral inquiry.

The program focuses on theoretical and policy issues related to educational practice. In particular the degree emphasizes the following concerns.

  • A concern for the disciplined study of the relationship between culture and education, encompassing philosophy, sociology, history, social psychology, cultural anthropology, and human development.
  • A concern for the disciplined study of the relationships among the arts, humanities, education, and culture.
  • A concern for providing broad philosophical, moral, and spiritual perspectives on educational policies and practices.
  • A concern for the rigorous study of the impact of current important intellectual movements in educational theory, including feminism, critical theory, popular culture, moral inquiry, and post-modern thought.
  • A concern for providing a philosophical framework and understanding to current educational discourse.
  • A concern for the serious study of emerging forms of inquiry, such as hermeneutical inquiry, ethnographic studies, critical theory, phenomenological studies, and life history narrative.
  • A concern for cross and interdisciplinary work requiring significant involvement of faculty across the School and University.
  • A concern for integrating personal and professional selves and for providing synthesis, perspective, and direction.

PhD Program Vision

The framework for the PhD program in cultural foundations revolves around fundamental issues of social justice as they pertain to educational theory and practice–its ideology, philosophical assumptions, moral claims and social analysis.

Program Information and Requirements

The Department of Educational Leadership and Cultural Foundations offers a graduate program in cultural foundations. This program of study entails a 60 hour PhD degree in Educational Studies.

Within this concentration, the program of study is negotiated between the student and his or her individual doctoral advisory/dissertation committee. Although the program involves course recommendations, every effort is made to avoid rigidity and repetition. The program has both formal and informal dimensions—course work, comprehensive examinations, doctoral dissertation, as well as discussions with faculty and other students, reflections, attending lectures and performances, etc.

The program has four course areas:

Educational Foundations – Total of 18 credit hours

Normally students in this program take courses reflecting social, philosophic, and historic dimensions of education.

Curriculum and Teaching – 15 to 24 credit hours

Normally students take courses that encourage a broad, critical understanding of school, pedagogy, and society.

Research and Methods of Inquiry – 15 credit hours

Normally students take courses from a variety of qualitative and epistemological methodologies to guide in dissertation research. The following course is required:

  • ERM 617 Statistical Methods in Education OR ERM 680 Intermediate Statistical Methods in Education OR acceptable substitute pending approval by advisor and the Graduate School.

Dissertation – 12 credit hours

ELC 799 Dissertation

Application Criteria & Procedures

Check out the application procedures

Plan of Study (POS) Form

Plan of Study Form (POS)

Financial Information

Check out the financial aid information

Contact Information

Guide For the Preparation of Theses and Dissertations


For application forms for fellowships and assistantships, or for other basic information:


PhD Program & Admissions Coordinator (direct queries to):

Dr. Leila Villaverde
PhD Admissions Coordinator
(336) 334-4737 (fax)
360 School of Education Building
P.O. Box 26170
University of North Carolina at Greensboro
Greensboro, NC 27401-6170

Student financial support questions:

Dr. Silvia Bettez
Coordinator, Student Funds & Fellowships Committee
336-334-4737 (fax)
358 School of Education Building
University of North Carolina at Greensboro
P.O. Box 26170
Greensboro, NC 27402-6170

Further information and regulations governing graduate degree work at UNCG can be found in the Graduate Bulletin (

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