Community College Education
Fathe, Kettlewell, Kuhta, Lyne, Muir, O'Connor, Salmon, Vaughan
This program offers all course work designated CTCH in the Course Descriptions chapter of this catalog.
Doctor of Arts
Community College Education, DA
The Doctor of Arts in Community College Education (DACCE) prepares students to be leaders in undergraduate education. In addition to expertise in a selected disciplinary or interdisciplinary knowledge area, graduates of this program are proficient in four core areas related to undergraduate education: scholarly activity related to teaching and learning; effective integration of technology in the teaching and learning process; pedagogy appropriate to the discipline; and program and curriculum design, development, and assessment. With this background and the guided practical experience provided by internships, students are prepared to lead their institutions to respond to the changing needs of 21st century students.
Students are accepted for the fall semester only. The deadline for receipt of all application materials is February 15. Applications submitted after this date will be considered on a space available basis. In addition to meeting admission requirements for graduate study at George Mason, applicants to the DA in Community College Education should have a master's degree in a knowledge area offered by the participating departments and schools, submit a writing sample appropriate to the knowledge area, three letters of recommendation, and a resume. While GRE/GMAT scores are not required, they represent valuable support for admissions decisions.
Candidates for the DA in Community College Education must complete a minimum of 60 credits beyond the master's degree, distributed as follows:
Once enrolled in 998, a student must maintain continuous registration in 998 or 999 each semester until the dissertation is submitted to and accepted by the university library.
Within the 60 credits, a minimum of 6 credits need to be in courses with a technology-focus. These include the required CTCH 603, courses in the knowledge area, or electives in the education core, as approved by the program director.
Substantial work in a knowledge area is essential to the leadership in curriculum expected of students earning the DACCE. Given the dynamic nature of the community college and the growth of programs in nontraditional fields, the choice of a knowledge area and relevant course work should be guided by the student's developing interests and a vision of the student's role as a community college educator. While many DACCE candidates take their 24 knowledge area credits exclusively in one discipline or department, candidates are encouraged to think broadly and in terms of multiple disciplines and to work with their advisors to choose appropriate courses from more than one discipline/department.
The 18-credit core of education courses is designed to develop leaders in undergraduate education. The program emphasizes a broad knowledge base in teaching as well as course work in the history and philosophy of the community college and in instructional technology. These courses concentrate on scholarship and practice in the fields of teaching and learning, instructional technology, and program and curriculum design and assessment. All courses emphasize leadership, ethics, and diversity in higher education.
Students participate in two three-credit internships to learn skills applicable to college-based teaching and higher education administration or policy. Internships provide an important educational experience that complements the classroom-based course work. Students doing an internship should have completed a minimum of 18 credits of core requirements, including CTCH 601, 602, 3 credits in the knowledge area, and have an approved program of study. Internships must be approved by the advisor and the Internship Coordinator; they require a minimum of 200 hours of work for 3 credits and participation in an internship seminar.
Program of Study
Working with an advisor, students develop a program of study that outlines the courses that will be used to fulfill the degree requirements. The program of study is approved by the advisor and program director, and any modifications require the student to file a revised program of study.
Students must pass candidacy exams to demonstrate a breadth and depth of knowledge in both the knowledge area and the education core. To be eligible to take a candidacy exam, students need to have completed all course work in the specific area, to be in good standing (have a minimum cumulative GPA of 3.000); and to be registered for at least one credit. The competency exam for the education core is a written exam administered by the DACCE program. The knowledge area exams are administered by the liaison in the knowledge area; each area has its own exam guidelines.
Students who do not pass a candidacy exam in either area have until the last day of the next semester (published in the Schedule of Classes) to retake it. (For students who take exams in the summer months this will be the published date for fall semester.) Students who do not retake the exam by this deadline or who do not successfully complete the candidacy exam the second time will be terminated from the program.
Advancement to Candidacy
Once students complete all course work, pass candidacy exams, have an appointed dissertation committee, and a signed proposal, they are, with the recommendation of the committee, advanced to candidacy by the dean.
In the dissertation, students demonstrate an ability to conduct original research that contributes new knowledge or a reinterpretation of existing knowledge to the area of investigation. This research can be theoretical in nature, focusing on pedagogy, the knowledge area, or a combination of both. Students who focus their dissertation in the knowledge area must include at least a chapter which shows how the results of the dissertation research may be applied to undergraduate education. Dissertations may also be practice-oriented, focusing on new and replicable ways of teaching within the knowledge area.
To register for dissertation proposal (998), students need to have an approved program of study and must have completed the two internships, all other course work, and the candidacy exams in both the core and the knowledge area. To register for dissertation research (999), students must be advanced to candidacy. Students enrolled in 999 are required to submit evidence of progress to the dissertation advisor and the program by the last day of classes each semester (as published in the Schedule of Classes) (e.g., a draft of a chapter or a brief, descriptive report of research activities). Students showing successful progress will receive a grade of "IP." Those who do not will receive an "IN."
Students are required to take at least 3 credits of proposal research (998) and 9 of research writing (999). They must have at least 12 credits of 998 and 999 combined, and no more than 12 credits of 998 and 999 combined may be applied to the doctoral degree. Once enrolled in 999, students must maintain continuous enrollment each semester until the dissertation is completed. Unless defending in summer, students do not need to be registered during the summer sessions.
Certificate in College Teaching
The Certificate in College Teaching is designed for graduate students who are planning a career in undergraduate education. The certificate offers courses that enhance pedagogical skills, explore pedagogical scholarship and the use of technology in instruction, and explain the history and philosophy of the two-year college.
Admission requirements for the certificate are the same as for the doctoral program, except that certificate applicants do not need to have a master's degree and do not need to specify a knowledge area in their goals statement. Deadlines for receipt of all admission materials are April 15 for fall admission and November 1 for spring admission.
Students must complete 18 credits distributed as follows.