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K12 Education & Equity

PhD in Education

The PhD in Education with a concentration in K12 Education & Equity prepares forward-thinking educators who focus upon the important roles schools play to support our diverse communities.

As a student in this program, you may aspire to be university faculty whose area of expertise and research centers on issues related to schools, school age children, the intersectionality among child/family/schooling/community, teaching/learning theories, institutional and organizational structures, theories and examples of change and reform, teacher effectiveness and/or preparation, indicators of wellness and success post-K12 and college/career readiness, specific populations (English learners, first generation students, undocumented youth, etc.), school/district/state/federal policies, and the impact of education.

The School of Educational Studies understands education through a lens of educational equity and social justice. We believe that while colleges and universities are a microcosm of society itself (where biases and oppression can and do play out), they can also simultaneously be agents of change that disrupt historical discrimination and advance practices and ideologies rooted in individual and community wellbeing.

Program Highlights
  • Courses are held at convenient times for working and commuting professionals. Most meet once a week at 4:00 or 7:00 p.m. Others are held on weekends.
  • Join a well-established network of alumni from the School of Educational Studies. There are university leadership and faculty across the nation (and especially prevalent in California) who are ready to welcome you as kindred spirits and advocates of “the CGU Way.”
  • Earn an Allies of Dreamers certificate as part of your PhD program. The first program of its kind nationally, Allies of Dreamers is a graduate‐level certificate program that provides the historical context, theoretical framework, and specific knowledge needed by K12 teachers and administrators, student affairs professionals in higher education, and community leaders to offer mentorship and advocacy for Dreamers and other undocumented students.
  • Work with a faculty mentor who will help you navigate your way through graduate school in light of your specific aspirations and interests.

Program At-a-glance

  • 72 units

    required units

  • PhD in Education

    degree awarded

  • In Person


  • Spring, Summer, Fall

    program start

  • 4-7 years | full time*

    estimated completion time

Request info Apply now

Frank Frias

Director of Admissions & Recruitment



  • David Drew

    David Drew

    Professor of Education
    Joseph B. Platt Chair in the Management of Technology

    Research Interests

    STEM education, data science, model building, technology development and management

  • Portrait of Deborah Faye Carter

    Deborah Faye Carter

    Associate Professor of Higher Education

    Research Interests

    Higher education; transition to college; college student outcomes; access to college; race in education; mentoring, equity, and diverse learning environments in STEM

  • Portrait of Delacy Ganley

    DeLacy Ganley

    Dean, School of Educational Studies
    Professor of Education

    Research Interests

    Culturally relevant education; resiliency and achievement of marginalized populations; intersection of families, community, and school; language acquisition; social capital theory; systems theory

  • Portrait of Dina Maramba

    Dina C. Maramba

    Professor of Education

    Research Interests

    Equity and diversity issues in higher education; theory and practice in student affairs; college student development; access and retention; first-generation college students; Asian American and Pacific Islander populations; minority serving institutions

  • Frances Gipson

    Frances Marie Gipson

    Clinical Professor of Education
    Director, Urban Leadership Program

    Research Interests

    Urban schooling; distributed leadership; social-emotional learning; culturally relevant and linguistically responsive education; systems theory; learning and achievement; talent and leadership development; P-20 school policy

  • Gwen Garrison

    Gwen Garrison

    Clinical Professor of Education
    Director of Educational Evaluation and Data Analysis

    Research Interests

    Organizational effectiveness; diversity & inclusion; research & evaluation process; data systems; data management; data visualization and storytelling

  • Portrait of Linda Perkins

    Linda Perkins

    University Professor
    Director, Applied Gender Studies

    Research Interests

    Women and African-American higher education, history and contemporary issues on women in higher education, especially Black women, global gender issues.

  • Portrait of Mary Poplin

    Mary Simpson Poplin

    Senior Research Fellow
    Professor Emerita

    Research Interests

    Highly effective teachers in Los Angeles area; effective teaching methods; students, schools and poverty; differences between Judeo Christian and secular thought; Mother Teresa (worked with her in 1996)

  • Portrait of Susan Paik

    Susan J. Paik

    Professor of Education

    Research Interests

    Educational productivity; talent and leader development; giftedness and creativity; learning and achievement; psychosocial and environmental factors; urban and international studies; underserved students; Asian Americans and education; family-school-community partnerships; research methods, design, and evaluation

  • Portrait of Thomas Luschei

    Tom Luschei

    Professor of Education

    Research Interests

    International and Comparative Education; Economics of Education; Teacher Quality, Teacher Policy, and Teacher Distribution; Education Policy across the Americas; Bilingual Education Policy and Practice

  • Torie Weiston-Serdan

    Clinical Assistant Professor

    Research Interests

    Critical mentoring; critical youth work; non-profits and social enterprises; diversity and equity; non-profits and philanthropy; youth-serving non-profits; culturally sustaining pedagogy; abolitionist teaching; Black Feminism in education; learning and teaching

  • Guan Saw

    Guan K. Saw

    Associate Professor of Education

    Research Interests

    Educational inequality; diversity and inclusion; STEM education and workforce; college access and success; sociology of education; educational psychology; educational evaluation and policy analysis; quantitative, qualitative, and mixed methods; health disparities

  • Rebecca Hatkoff

    Rebecca Hatkoff

    Interim Director of Teacher Education and Clinical Assistant Professor

    Research Interests

    Critical Social Justice Teaching Competencies; Classroom and School Ecology; Effective and Empowering Pedagogy for all Students, Teacher Candidates, and Teachers; Strength-Based Views of Schools, Teachers, Students, Households, and Communities

  • Portrait of Carl Cohn

    Carl Cohn

    Senior Research Fellow
    Professor Emeritus

    Research Interests

    Education, Urban education, Education policy

  • Daryl G. Smith

    Daryl G. Smith

    Senior Research Fellow
    Professor Emerita

    Research Interests

    Organizational implications of diversity, Assessment and evaluation, Leadership and change, Governance, Diversity in STEM fields, Faculty diversity

  • Eligio Martinez

    Eligio Martinez

    Senior Research Fellow

    Research Interests

    P-20 education pipeline; college access and retention; community colleges; boys and men of color; middle school education; Chicana/o and Latina/o Students


Program Features

  • You will take an introductory course, Proseminar for Doctoral Study, designed to orientate you to doctoral study. Toward the end of your program, you will take another course, Capstone for Doctoral Research, to prepare you for the move from coursework into doctoral research and dissertation writing.
  • Sample research and methods courses include: Introduction to Educational Evaluation, Assessment & Effectiveness, Introduction/Advanced Qualitative Inquiry, Introduction/Advanced Quantitative Research Methods, Research Methods & Design, Community-based Participatory Research – Focus on Transformative Movement Organizing, Research Practicum
  • CGU embraces transdisciplinary learning and thinking. To foster the ability to communicate across discipline areas, you will take at least one transdisciplinary course.

Application Guidelines

Requirements Summary

Item Description
Application Fee $80
Official Transcripts Yes
Letters of Recommendation 3
Statement of Purpose Yes
Resume Yes
Other Requirements English proficiency exam

Spring 2024
Priority Deadline – November 1, 2023
Final Deadline (International) – November 15, 2023
Final Deadline (Domestic) – December 1, 2023
Classes begin – January 16, 2024

Summer 2024
Priority Deadline – February 1, 2024
Final Deadline (International) – March 1, 2024
Final Deadline (Domestic) – April 1, 2024
Classes begin – May 13, 2024

Fall 2024
Priority Deadline – February 1, 2024
Final Deadline (International) – July 5, 2024
Final Deadline (Domestic) – August 1, 2024
Classes begin – August 26, 2024

Application Checklist

Cost & Aid

Program 72 units
Tuition per unit* $2,020

*Based on 2023-2024 tuition rates.


$245 Student Fee
$150 Technology Fee
International Student Services Fee*: $661 fall semester, $776 spring semester
**Applies to all international students (F-1 visa only) who are registered in coursework, doctoral study, or continuous registration. The fee is assessed each fall and spring semester for annual ISO accident and sickness plans and administrative fees. Subject to change.

For estimates of room & board, books, etc., please download CGU’s Cost of Attendance 2022-2023 .

Review General Costs

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