Cultural Foundations of Education, Ph.D.

The doctoral degree in Cultural Foundations of Education is a community of scholars who design critical and innovative projects centered on important questions concerning educational justice.

The interdisciplinary nature of this program allows students to develop doctoral research tailored to their specific interests, built on the foundational perspectives and knowledge offered through CFE’s curriculum. Drawing from the humanities and social sciences, we train our students in interdisciplinary analysis, critical theory, and diverse methodological frameworks. The program’s personalized and flexible approach to doctoral students’ work is guided by the expertise and training provided by CFE’s core and affiliated faculty, and is designed to foster critical inquiry into the cultural and social forces that shape issues of education and beyond.

Application Deadline: December 1 | More admissions information

CFE Ph.D. students will have opportunities to:

  • Gain scholarly expertise across a range of disciplinary perspectives on educational issues.
  • Receive advanced training in various methodological frameworks, which will contribute to the research design for their doctoral projects.
  • Develop the rigorous analytical and writing skills required of academic research.
  • Collaborate on research and creative works occurring in the department and across the university.
  • Present at conferences and participate in other professional activities.
  • Attend, participate in, and present at the CFE Colloqium Series, which regularly engages faculty, students, and alumni to share and discuss their research and work.

Expertise in teaching and instruction is developed through both Teaching Assistantships within the department, and participation in the Future Professoriate Program. This includes orientations, year-round services for teaching assistants, and opportunities to co-teach with fellow doctoral students and department faculty, guest lecture, and independent instruction.

Faculty, students, and graduates are committed to:

  • Intersectional and critical analysis for the purpose of radical social and political transformation.
  • Broadening public conversations about education, equity, and social justice.
  • Producing research, scholarship, and creative projects that address educational policy and practice, institutions, and underrepresented communities.
  • Building a dynamic cadre of students and alumni who are committed to engagement, participation, and disruption of systems of power, oppression, and privilege in education.

Graduates of the Cultural Foundations of Education Ph.D. program work in a broad range of academic and policy contexts, including teaching and administration at some of the top universities in the country, research and policy work, and working with foundations, NGOs, or K-12 schools and districts.

Program Contacts

Breana Nieves Vergara, Assistant Director of Graduate Admissions
Gretchen Lopez, Associate Professor; Director, Intergroup Dialogue|315.443.8344
Gretchen Lopez