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Evaluation, Statistics, and Measurement Program

esm

Institute for Assessment and Evaluation

PhD Program
  ESM Students

The Ph. D. program in Evaluation, Statistics, and Measurement (ESM) has been carefully designed to provide students with an integrated, sequenced, and experientially-based doctoral program leading to a meaningful professional career. The overall focus of the program is to provide students with the requisite skills and experiences essential for three types of professional careers:  1) as an evaluation, applied statistics, and assessment/measurement faculty member in various higher education settings, 2) as an external evaluator employed by an evaluation group or organization providing external evaluation services, or 3) as an internal evaluator/in-house ESM consultant serving the needs of the organizations in which they are employed. Located within the University of Tennessee’s Department of Educational Psychology and Counseling, the ESM program integrates evaluation, statistics, and measurement theory, content knowledge, technical skilsl, and highly relevant and meaningful field experiences to enable graduates to function as esteemed professionals, productive scholars, and leaders in their particular sub-fields of interest.

Intended Audience

The ESM program is intended for students with education, social science and/or applied statistics interests and related academic backgrounds seeking employment within the growing fields of applied evaluation, assessment and statistics.  These fields have grown substantially in response to the needs of the federal and state governments, non-profit organizations and foundations, private sector entities to demonstrate and continually improve the effectiveness of their programs and services. The ESM doctoral program is based squarely upon the needs of students seeking to enter ESM fields, expand opportunities within their current professional situation, or prepare for an academic career and engage in research.

Curriculum Elements


  1. Basic Concentration (21 hours): Basic coursework required to develop a foundation for further, more advanced study.  The basic concentration includes a one-year sequence of statistics, two basic introductory research courses introducing students to qualitative and quantitative research elements and traditions, and seminars in Educational Psychology and evaluation. Specific course requirements are identified in Figure 1.

  2. Advanced Concentration (18 hours): Advanced coursework including hands-on application of evaluation and statistics basics acquired in the basic concentration, consisting of a second evaluation course, a one-year sequence of advanced evaluation, an internship and an advanced statistics course. Specific course requirements and options are identified in Figure 1.

  3. Research (15 hours): Research courses addressing more advanced qualitative and quantitative designs, and a more advanced statistics course or topics course addressing evaluation research requirements. Specific course requirements and options are identified in Figure 1.

  4. Cognate (6 hours): The cognate is comprised of two courses outside the program area. Other areas of Educational Psychology may be suitable. Courses do not have to have the same prefix.

    Additional Requirements:
    Students, in consultation with their program advisor, will select an area of interest outside ESM for a cognate.  The purpose of the cognate is to allow students to explore content areas in which they intend to practice their ESM on a professional basis.  Generally, the cognate would represent 2 graduate level courses (3 credit hours each). 

  5. Elective (6 hours): Electives include two courses outside the program area in accordance with a student’s area of evaluation interest and future practice expectations.

    Additional Requirements: Students in consultation with their advisors will select two courses outside of ESM in which they seek to develop additional content knowledge or research/statistical skills.

  6. Dissertation (24 hours): A minimum of 24 dissertation hours taken at the conclusion of ESM coursework

Other Program Requirements: To enter and complete the ESM program, students must posses an earned baccalaureate degree, satisfy all Department and Graduate College requirement for admission, residence, and graduation, pass doctoral comp exam or portfolio examination, and prepare/defend a dissertation.

Suggested Course Schedule

Updated 05/06/2013

ESM Program Faculty

Schuyler Huck, Ph. D.       
     Email: shuck@utk.edu

Jennifer Ann Morrow, Ph. D.     
     Email: jamorrow@utk.edu

Gary J. Skolits, Ed. D.           
     Email: gskolits@utk.edu

For more information on the ESM program, contact:

Dr. Gary Skolits
ESM Coordinator, 2012-2013

A503 Bailey Education Complex 
The University of Tennessee
Knoxville, TN 37996-3456

Phone: 865-974-2777
Fax: 865-974-0135 
Email: gskolits@utk.edu

Contact EPC

535 Jane & David Bailey Education Complex
1122 Volunteer Boulevard
Knoxville, Tennessee 37996-3452

Phone: 865-974-8145
Fax: 865-974-0135