Instructional Systems Technology

Ph.D. in Instructional Systems Technology

The Instructional Systems Technology Doctor of Philosophy in Education degree program is designed for individuals seeking to be researchers in the field of instructional technology. The IST program prepares Ph.D. students to discover new knowledge through basic research and answer specific questions about practical problems through applied research. Ph.D. program graduates typically conduct research and teach in university settings or work as researchers within private or public research and development centers involved in instructional technology.

Degree Requirements

Major Requirements (42 cr.)
Instructional Systems Technology Core (18 cr.)

  • R690 Application of Research Methods to Instructional Systems Technology (3 cr.)
  • R695 Topical Inquiry Seminar in Instructional Systems Technology (3 cr., take four times for a total of 12 cr.)
  • R711 Readings in Instructional Technology (3 cr.)

Instructional Systems Technology Electives (24 cr.)

  • Options here include all Instructional Systems Technology graduate courses, as approved by the student’s doctoral advisory committee.

Inquiry Requirements (9 cr.)

  • Y502 Intermediate Statistics Applied to Education (3 cr.)
  • Y521 Methodological Approaches to Educational Inquiry (3 cr.)
  • Y611 Qualitative Inquiry in Education (3 cr.)
  • Students are allowed to make course substitutions in accordance with the inquiry policy, as approved by the student’s doctoral advisory committee. A list of approved inquiry courses may be found at

Minor Requirements (12 cr.)
The minor must have integrity in its own right and must complement the major. The minor field must demonstrate wholeness within itself and contribute to the student's overall doctoral program. Minors are normally formulated within a single program area. However, an interdisciplinary or individualized minor is also possible. Interdisciplinary or individualized minors require a written description of the minor's underlying theme along with a rationale for each course's contribution to that theme through the Minor Justification form. This form should be submitted and approved by the Graduate Studies Office prior to enrolling in the minor courses. Major area courses may not be used in the minor.

Foundations Requirements (6 cr.)
Options here include any School of Education courses outside of IST. These courses typically are in the areas of educational psychology and educational foundations.

Elective Requirements (6 cr.)
Options here include any graduate-level courses approved by the student’s doctoral advisory committee.

Dissertation Requirements (15 cr.)

  • R795 Dissertation Proposal Preparation (3 cr.)
  • R799 Doctoral Dissertation in Instructional Systems Technology (12 cr.)

Academic Bulletins

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Contact Us

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Additional program information can be found at the Office of Graduate Studies.