Career and Technical Education Doctorate of Philosophy

Applied Sciences, Technology, and Education

Career and Technical Education
Doctorate of Philosophy

The Applied Sciences, Technology, and Education (ASTE) faculty welcome a diverse group of students seeking to improve education. The Ph.D. program prepares candidates for academic careers in formal and nonformal settings that demand research expertise and an understanding of the theoretical foundations. Accepted applicants will work collaboratively with faculty and other students to increase their research, program development, and teaching abilities. The Career and Technical Education (CTE) Ph.D. program is a four-year online or campus-based program. On-campus students are provided with opportunities to teach undergraduate courses and engage in place-based research. Students who engage in the program online have flexibility as they continue with their careers while earning their degree. All Ph.D. students are required to meet face-to-face on the Logan campus the second week of July for three consecutive summers. The summer meeting provides an opportunity for students to complete additional professional competency requirements. Most students in the program take two-three classes (6-9 credits) per semester. To get a cost estimate for your graduate degree go to the USU Tuition Tables. Learn more about why you'd like to earn this degree at USU!


This degree is designed to prepare professionals and scholars who are seeking to become:

  • curriculum specialists
  • coordinators and supervisors in public or private school systems
  • educators or administrators in higher education
  • leaders working in communications or as educators in formal and nonformal settings
  • educational evaluators or researchers in various settings
The CTE Ph.D. Program Guide provides additional details. If you have questions about this degree program please contact Dr. Michael Pate

CTE Ph.D. Program Guide

Application Process

Application documents are submitted to the School of Graduate Studies. Students are admitted each year for a fall start. Application documents are submitted to the School of Graduate Studies. The required documentation for the application package is noted on the ASTE Graduate Admission and Application webpage. To be eligible for this degree, students must have completed or be completing a master's thesis or intensive writing capstone project in an area related to career and technical education or take the GRE, and have been involved in formal or nonformal education for a minimum of two years. We are not accepting international applications at this time. Applications are due no later than May 1 for a fall start. To be considered for the Presidential Doctoral Research Fellowship award, applications are due February 1. Consult the USU Academic and Registration Calendar for additional semester begin and end dates.

View the application requirements and submit your application!


The CTE Ph.D. Program Guide outlines a course schedule for a Fall Semester Odd Year and Fall Semester Even Year start. The course list below provides a quick view of the required courses and when they are offered. All course are 3 credits each unless noted. To view course syllabi, go to the USU Canvas Syllabus Tracker website and select the semester when the course was last taught (as noted on the table below). Courses from other departments may be approved on a program of study. When registering, register for the section that is part of the "online" campus as designated by the letter "I" (i), e.g., I01. Out-of-state and in-state tuition will be calculated based on where you live.  Be sure to obtain textbooks prior to each course start date so you can successfully complete each course. Register for these courses by the published registration dates online through MyUSU. Additional questions concerning transfer credits, continuous registration fees, time limits, leave of absence, etc., may be answered under the Graduate General Regulations or under Graduate Degree Requirements in the General Catalog.

Required Courses (52 credits)

Semesters Offered

Course Numbers Course Titles Spring Even Summer Even* Fall Even Spring Odd Summer Odd* Fall Odd
ASTE 6360
History, Philosophy and Policy Development in Career and Technical Education
ASTE 6750 Research Methods and Design X     X    
ASTE 6800
Analysis of Social Science Research Data - Quant 1 (Prerequisite: ASTE 6750 or instructor approval based on an ASTE 6800 Pretest)
  X**     X**  
ASTE 6090 Curriculum Design (for formal educators)      X     X
ASTE 6960
Readings and Conference (1 credit each summer, total 3 credits)***
  X     X  
ASTE 7100 Research and Academic Writing   X     X  
ASTE 7170 Program Theory and Evaluation X***          
ASTE 7200 Qualitative Methods       X**    
ASTE 7310 Theories of Teaching and Learning           X
ASTE 7370 Grant Writing and Management     X      
ASTE 7400

Occupational Analysis

ASTE 7500 Diffusion of Innovations X          
ASTE 7800 Advanced Data Analysis - Quant 2****     X      
ASTE 7810 Graduate Seminar - Orientation to Research (1 credit, first fall)     X     X
ASTE 7970 Dissertation Research (minimum 12 credits)*** X X X X X X

Recommended Elective Courses (8 credits)

Semesters Offered

Course Numbers Course Titles Spring Even Summer Even* Fall Even Spring Odd Summer Odd* Fall Odd
ASTE 6160 Foundations of Adult Education*    X     X  
ASTE 6170 Program Planning and Evaluation            X
ASTE 6180 Administration & Leadership      X      
ASTE 6220 Volunteer Programs and Partnerships X     X    
ASTE 6300 Advanced Teaching Methods X     X    
ASTE 6315 Career and Technical Student Organization Development         X  
ASTE 6460 CTE and STEM       X    
ASTE 6470 Digital Tools for Learning   X     X  
ASTE 6920 Communication Tools for Extension           X
ASTE 6950 Internship (1-6 credits - view requirements)*** X X X X X X
ASTE 7300

Mixed Methods Research

ASTE 7600

The Professoriate (2 credits)

ASTE 7900 Independent Study (1-6 credits - view requirements)*** X X X X X X

*May not be required if an introduction to research methods course has been taken in the past 5 years 

**Prerequisite, ASTE 6750 or equivalent, a B in PSY 3010, Social Science Statistics OR a 70% on the ASTE 6800 Pre-test (Virtual Proctor). More information about this prerequisite can be found in the CTE PhD Program Guide.

***How to register for variable credit at USU. In addition to registering for variable credit, you will need to adjust variable credit courses in Degree Works when you enter your Program of Study. This tip sheet shows how to change the variable credits when adding the course to your Program of Study in Degree Works: Variable Credit Courses on your Program of Study.

****Prerequisite, ASTE 6800