Ph.D. in Special Education

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“I appreciate the creative solutions that faculty commit to building community, collaboration and inclusion throughout the program.”

- Amber Brown Ruiz, Ph.D. ’21

he Ph.D. in special education is a stand-alone doctoral degree program. The program designed to prepare researchers who are ready to assume leadership positions at universities, research centers, state departments of education, or other educational and governmental institutions in the field of special education.

The program provides a solid research foundation, broad theoretical perspectives and structured opportunities to develop expertise in research, teaching and policy/service.

Grounded in core knowledge through focused coursework and an emphasis on both “learning” and “doing,” doctoral students are mentored by a group of diverse faculty members who are engaged in school-based research and dissemination. Doctoral students participate in research, teaching, and policy internships that prepares them to be leaders in special education research, personnel development, and policy implementation.

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The VCU Holmes Scholars Program is a selective program that provides accepted doctoral students from historically underrepresented groups with resources and professional development to best position them for tenure track faculty positions in high (R2) and very high (R1) research universities. Our cross-disciplinary scholars create a network that leverages the collective and individual strengths of each member to maximize their VCU School of Education program. Learn more about how we live our values through the Holmes program!

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