Launching a Hybrid Ph.D. in Educational Psychology and Educational Technology: Lessons Learned from Faculty Deliberations, Student Experiences, and Technological Challenges
Abstract: This paper discusses faculty deliberations leading to a decision to offer a substantially online hybrid access to an established Ph.D. program in educational psychology and educational technology. Announcements via the Web in late January 2010, resulted in 200 inquiries and 30 applications. All 14 students offered admission accepted and began in summer 2010 with an intensive two-week session on campus. The high interest and quality of applicants points to pent up demand for access to a Ph.D. by educators who wish to remain in their jobs. Interviews with students and faculty place this innovation in the context of broader changes in higher education and society. Lessons from the first year raised many issues regarding faculty roles, articulation with the on-campus program, use of Web 2.0 tools such as Ning, blogs, and wikis to support online learning community, synchronous vs asynchronous components, and mentoring research skills at the doctoral level.