Ph.D. Student Navigation Guide

Welcome to the Ph.D. navigation guide for doctoral students in the Department of Instructional Systems and Workforce Development at Mississippi State University. We have compiled this page to serve as a guide in helping you navigate the different areas of the program to enhance your journey. Please review each aspect of it and bookmark this page to be referenced throughout your path to the Ph.D. It contains information and links applicable to each aspect you will encounter. While we endeavoured to ensure the guide is inclusive, if you find that you still have questions, please direct them to us in an email at or call us at 662.325.2281.

Click the title to expand the section.


The admissions requirements for a MSU graduate program are outlined in the following links:

Prerequisites for admission into the graduate program include all the general requirements of the Graduate School. In addition, scores from all sections of the GRE must be submitted. International students must obtain a minimum TOEFL score of 550 PBT (213 CBT or 79 iBT) or a minimum IELTS score of 6.5.

A complete admission packet consists of the following items:

  • Application to the graduate degree program.
  • Three letters of recommendation (must come from faculty and administrators who can comment about your scholarly ability)
  • Statement of purpose (a minimum of one-page single-spaced): In the statement, please make sure to address the following:
    • For Ph.D. degree:
      1. describe the purpose of applying for the Ph.D. degree in the program area
      2. identify your research interest
      3. discuss your career goals
  • Official scores from all sections of the Graduate Record Examination (GRE - less than 5 years old)
  • Official transcripts from all colleges and universities attended

Full Admission to any department graduate programs requires a minimum undergraduate GPA of 2.75 or higher from a four-year accredited institution or a minimum graduate GPA of 3.00 or higher on previous graduate work from an accredited institution.

Provisional Admission. If a student does not fully meet the admission requirements of the program, it may be possible for that student to be admitted provisionally. If admitted provisionally, the student must attain a 3.00 GPA on the first 9 hours of graduate courses at Mississippi State University after admission to the program. Courses with an S grade, transfer credits, or credits earned while in Unclassified status cannot be used to satisfy this requirement. If a 3.00 GPA is not attained, the student shall be dismissed from the graduate program.

Contingent Admission. There are no contingent admissions. The admission packet must be complete and all admission requirements met before admission will be considered.

Applying For Domestic Deadline International Deadline
Summer first 5-week April 1 March 1
Summer second 5-week April 1 March 1
Summer 10-week April 1 March 1
Fall July 1 May 1
Spring November 1 September 1

The Departmental of Instructional Systems and Workforce Development requires that a student who has not been enrolled for three consecutive semesters must submit a readmission application that includes:

  • New GRE scores (if the GRE is older than five years)
  • Three letters of recommendation (if they are older than three years since the last application)
  • A revised statement of purpose that:
    1. describes the purpose of reapplying
    2. discusses the applicant's career goals
    3. explains how circumstances have changed making academic improvement a realistic goal
    4. identifies the applicant's research interest (Ph.D. students only)

Click the link below to view the department's admission requirements and deadlines. After reviewing, you can begin the application process via the Application link.

Once you have completed the admission process, the Graduate School will forward your information to the Department of Instructional Systems and Workforce Development for review. After review by the department admissions committee, College Dean, and Graduate Dean, you will be notified of the decision by an email from the Graduate School. If you have any further questions, you may contact the Graduate School and/or ISWD Department at the links below.

After your admission to the program, you will be assigned an advisor from our department. You will need to contact your advisor to schedule an appointment to complete your course schedule for the upcoming semester. The first link below directs you to our program curriculum sheet. The second link directs you to our faculty directory. Click on the faculty member's name to view a full profile including research interests.

Graduate assistantships are available to graduate students both in our department and in other departments at the University. The three types of assistantships are service, research and teaching. Assistantships offer students an opportunity to gain hands-on experience in the field of study as well as earn a stipend. Please click on the following links to learn more about graduate assistantships and the application process. For opportunities in the ISWD Department, contact the department head.

Degree Requirements

Information concerning number of hours that can be shared between graduate hours and hours that can be transferred into a new program are outlined in the following link.

The following links discuss graduate committee membership, membership changes and details concerning who may serve on a graduate committee as well as all necessary forms for selecting your committee.

Students are required to complete a program of study with the aid of their advisor. The contents of a student's program of study are documented in the student's CAPP report, which can be accessed in myBanner. A signd CAPP report must be on file for all graduate students. Details concerning the CAPP report/program of study are included in the following link:

The student and his/her major advisor may use the following forms to design a program of study, that will then be keyed in the student's CAPP report. Page one consists of the degree requirement courses. Page two (continuation) contains courses that could not fit on the first page. Page three (attachment) contains courses that are accepted from previous graduate work.

The CAPP report will be used as the final program of study. The CAPP report should be approved and signed by the student, the major advisor, and all committee members.

It is recommended that our Ph.D. students complete a program of study/CAPP report after the second semester of enrollment. This provides a clear path of what courses remain to be taken in the program.

The policy concerning Ph.D. degree time limit is discussed in the following link as well as the necessary forms for time extensions.

Preliminary Examination

The department administers written preliminary examinations in October, March, and June. The exact deadlines are posted each semester on the ISWD website. You may also contact the graduate coodinator.

  • Completed examination application. The office associate in IED Room 100 distributes the application.
  • Approved Program of Study
  • Committee Request Form
  • 3.00 GPA on all courses attempted for graduate credit after admission to the degree program (i.e., program and non-program courses)
  • Course Requirements
    • The student must be within six hours of completing the coursework and must have completed all statistics and research courses.
    • The minor examination must be completed prior to taking the written preliminary examination.

The written preliminary examination is comprised of three examination periods:

Thursday Afternoon Friday Morning Friday Afternoon
1 p.m. - 5 p.m. 8 a.m. - Noon 1 p.m. - 5 p.m.
Part One: Research and statistics. (4 hours). The examination covers the 19 hours of research and statistics required in the degree. This examination is administered on Thursday, 1 p.m. - 5 p.m.
Part Two: Foundations AND postsecondary knowledge and approved technology major area. (4 hours). The portion of the examination includes questions in the foundations AND postsecondary requirements of the degree as well as one question on the approved technology major area of the degree. This examination is administered on Friday morning, 8 a.m. to noon.
Part Three: Technology major area. (4 hours). This portion of the examination includes two questions from the approved technology area of the degree. This examination is administered on Friday afternoon, 1 p.m. to 5 p.m.

The examination is administered by faculty proctors and is held in one of the departmental computer labs in the Industrial Education Building. Students are provided the examination questions for the examination period, provided a flash drive for saving their responses, and provided specific instructions and procedures for taking the examination. Students are not permitted to use the Internet, email, or any resource materials during the examination. These procedures are shown at the link below.

Procedures for Students Taking Preliminary Examination

The student will request a study guide from each of his/her committee members. The study guide (not exam questions) will guide the student in specific areas of study. The application to take the examination cannot be completed until the student has received all study guides.

  • Prepare for the Examination Early. Begin studying for the preliminary examination when you enter the Ph.D. degree. Throughout your course work, save all course lectures and notes to use later for study materials while preparing for the preliminary examination. Build a notebook (paper or digital) that combines information and research articles that can be used as study materials.
  • Set Aside Time to Study. As the time approaches to take the exam, devote time each week for preparing for the examination.
  • Research Study Guide Topics. Spend time on the research needed to complete the examination questions. Refer to course notes and scholarly research articles and books related to the study guide topics.
  • Practice Answering a Question. Ask your major advisor to provide a practice question. Write your response in a timed setting. Review and rewrite your response. Ask your major advisor to critique using the examination rubric.
  • Form Study Groups. Find fellow Ph.D. students and form a study group to discuss ways to prepare for the examination.
  • Use the Rubric to Guide Quality of Response. Review the rubric and be sure you are addressing all components of the rubric in the answer. The components are Completeness, Knowledge, Organization, and Quality of Writing.
  • Practice Time Management During the Examination. Do not spend an excessive amount of time on one question and attempt to rush the others. Attempting to answer all questions will be essential in reaching the passing score and excelling on the examination.
  • Evaluate the Length of Answer. Over the years many students have asked about the number of pages expected. Although it seems a perplexing question, the answer is quite simple. Write enough pages to fully answer the question and show the committee mastery of the subject. Again, refer to the rubric as it describes the criterion for completeness, knowledge, organization, and quality of writing.
  • Document Response with Sources. Knowledge of examination question is best evidenced by use of sources/citations to support the knowledge presented in the question. Although in most scenarios you will not be expected to memorize the entirety of an APA reference, you will be expected to show concrete evidence and knowledge of your sources which may include the author(s), journal, and article where information or quote was taken. You will not be permitted to use the Internet, email, or any resources you may have collected.
  • Quality of Writing. Always remember that this is also a writing exam and students will be expected to use proper grammar, spelling, and sentence structure. Writing should be done in an academic form and not written as simply conversational. See the organization element on the grading rubric that clearly expects an introduction, body, and summary.
Rubric for Ph.D. Written Preliminary Examination

The oral preliminary examination will be give three to four weeks after the student passes the written preliminary examination. The students should contact his/her major professor concerning their oral preliminary examination. During the oral preliminary examination, graduate committee members will pose questions regarding your answers to the written preliminary examination. You may be asked to clarify, expand, or justify your answers.

See the link below for the oral preliminary examination rubric.

Dissertation Hours Requirements

A minimum of 20 hours of TKT 9000 Dissertation Research hours is required for the Ph.D. in ISWD. You may register for one credit hour or more per semester; however, the course requirements will reflect the number of credit hours in which you enroll.

According to departmental policy, a doctoral student should register for TKT 9000 Dissertation Research hours only after passing the preliminary examination (written and oral). After passing the preliminary examination, you must be continuously enrolled until submitting the final approved dissertation to the Library.

Continuous Enrollment Policy

Note: Although registration in TKT 9000 is not permitted during coursework, it is expected that the doctoral student will discuss potential dissertation research topics with his/her major adviser and committee during coursework and be prepared to register for TKT 9000 immediately after passing the preliminary examination.

TKT 9000 Dissertation Research Hours course sections are listed in the master schedule for each graduate faculty member in the department. You will register for your major adviser and/or dissertation director’s section. If the dissertation director is not your major adviser, register for the dissertation director’s section. Your dissertation director must be a faculty member in the Department of Instructional Systems and Workforce Development.

By the fifth day of class, you must complete the Learning Contract required for TKT 9000 and return to the instructor of the TKT 9000 section in which you enroll. You are entering into an agreement with your instructor on what you will achieve during the semester to earn the credit hours in which you enroll. You would expect to work at least 30 hours for one-credit hour, 60 hours for two-credit hours, and so forth. Be very specific and realistic in completing the learning contract. The instructor may revise the learning contract after reviewing your first draft.

The final grade for TKT 9000 is based on your completion of the tasks agreed upon on the final learning contract that was signed by both the student and the instructor. The grades assigned are “S” for Satisfactory and “U” for Unsatisfactory. The letter grade “I” for Incomplete is not permitted.

According to departmental policy, a doctoral student should register for TKT 9000 Dissertation Research hours only after passing the written and oral preliminary examinations. Although registration in TKT 9000 is not permitted during coursework, it is expected that the doctoral student will discuss potential dissertation research topics with his/her major adviser and committee during coursework.

The grades assigned for TKT 9000 are “S” for Satisfactory and “U” for Unsatisfactory. The letter grade “I” for Incomplete is not permitted.

According to department policy, a grade of "U" in TKT 9000 is considered unsatisfactory performance. After the first grade of “U”, the student will receive a warning letter. After the second grade of “U”, the student will receive a probation letter with requirements. After the third grade of “U”, the student will be recommended to the Graduate School for dismissal from the program.

Dissertation Jump Start

From proposal to defense, this workshop provides strategies for starting and completing your thesis or dissertation.

Search and Register for Workshops

In this workshop, you will learn the basics of how to struture and write a literature review, with a focus on the thesis or dissertation review.

Search and Register for Workshops

This session discusses issues related to ethical research. Topics covered include avoiding plagarism, the ethical use of data, and the MSU Honor Code.

Search and Register for Workshops

This workshop covers the submission process for format review and demonstrates how to use the automated templates to format MSU thesis and dissertations to the requirements set forth in the standards.

These templates were designed to help an author organize and format their documents with minimal effort so that their focus can be on the content. Those who have already started writing or have already defended are welcome to bring their current documents (either on flash drive or email attachment) to start the process of placing their content into the template.

Search and Register for Workshops

The dissertation is the cornerstone of your academic career and as a result will require many hours of diligent work and dedication. Staying organized is extremely important in the dissertation writing process. Selecting the appropriate software early on in the writing process will allow you to stay better organized and on track with your writing and research.

In this guide are listed two potential notetaking tools (EverNote and OneNote) and two reference managers (Mendeley and Zotero). Notetaking software will give you the ability to take notes as you conduct research and even as you write. The primary benefit to using notetaking software versus traditional word processing is the increased focus on organization. One primary characteristic of modern notetaking applications is the ability to sort and categorize notes into notebooks. Another reason to use notetaking software is the ability to share your notes across all your devices via the cloud.

On the otherhand the reference managers listed serve a different function. Mendeley, Zotero, and EndNote provide the ability to sort, organize, and categorize references. Throughout your dissertation journey, you will read many articles related to your topic and it may be difficult to keep track of all of these options. Cloud-based reference managers will give you the ability to manage your references easily and will even store a second copy in the cloud.

Notetaking and reference managers will give you freedom, help you stay organized, and provide peace of mind.

Evernote is a cloud-based notetaking application that is available on all major platforms: PC (web or standalone), smartphones, and tablets. The application possess many features such notebooks, pages, web clipper, and the ability to seamlessly share notes among all devices. Evernote is free for the basic package but does offer a paid version for additional features such as additional storage.

Get Evernote
Evernote Official Tips and Tutorials
Evernote Official Youtube Channel

OneNote is Microsoft's solution to notetaking. It is a characteristically standalone application with limited cloud features as compared to Evernote. OneNote is available on all major platforms including Apple platforms.

Get OneNote
Official OneNote Getting Started Course
Official Office Training Youtube Channel

Mendeley is a cloud-based reference manager that is offered free of charge. The application works seamlessly among all devices including PCs, tablets, and smartphones. Mendeley supports features such as: pdf markup for easy notetaking, one-click bibliography creator, categorization or references, and more.

Download Mendeley
Mendeley's Official Training Page
Mendely Getting Started Videos

Zotero is a cloud-based reference manager, like Mendeley. However, the application is marketed as a free-EndNote alternative. Many features of EndNote are present in Zotero and the list of features continues to grow with each new release.

Download Zotero
Zotero Official Training Page
Zotero Getting Started Video

When writing the dissertation, it is important to ensure that the formatting follows the APA formatting guide but also follows the Mississippi State University policies concerning formatting.

The Mississippi State University Library has prepared a Word document to be used a template for the dissertation. Students should carefully read the standards and formatting guide prior to using the template. It is also beneficial to attend the Dissertation Template Workshop that is hosted by the MSU Library. It would be most beneficial to start using the template when beginning to write the dissertation, rather than trying to import an existing dissertation into the template.

Standards for Preparing Thesis and Dissertations
Obtain the Thesis and Dissertation Template

The dissertation journey is a long and arduous process that requires dedication. It is important to set deadlines and milestones early on to ensure that you stay on track with your research and writing. Deadlines should be realistically achievable in the amount of time allotted. There is no particular guide since every student is different and works at a different pace. You should split the process up into different parts and set a specific date for each part to be completed. Setting deadlines and milestones will ensure that you stay on track, but will also assist in keeping you organized.

You can use software such as Google Calendar or Google Keep. Google Calendar is a great tool that works on all devices and is cloud based. The application provides the ability to manage and track your day-to-day activities and appointments. Google Keep is a to do list organizer that can assist in setting up milestones and deadlines for your dissertation journey.

Google Calendar
Google Keep

It is important to setup frequent meetings with your dissertation director to stay on track with your research and writing. The dissertation director will be able to point out any potential pitfalls that you may miss during your dissertation journey and offer invaluable advice. Students and professors have busy schedules so meeting freqeuently may be difficult. However, there are online options available for meeting when face to face simply is not an option.

Setup Face to Face Meetings
Meet Online via Skype
Meet Online via Google Hangouts

Dissertation Proposal

The dissertation proposal will be your first major undertaking throughout your dissertation journey. The dissertation proposal is the first three chapters of the dissertation written in future tense. It should be a document stating your intentions and your justifications for your study. It will also serve as the cornerstone for your dissertation upon approval from your committee.

The proposal shows your committee that you have clearly researched your topic area and identified any potential gaps in the literature along with any pitfalls that you may face along the way. It will also allow you to plan how you will collect and analyze the data for your study. The proposal process gives your committee the opportunity to offer advice and improvements to your study. The dissertation proposal should be viewed as an integral part of the dissertation journey that will prepare you for the road to come.

Please consult dissertation writing sources at the bottom of this guide for additional resources.

Prior to conducting your study, you must apply for IRB approval through the MSU Internal Review Board. IRB approval is required for all research conducted by MSU students and faculty alike that involves human or animal subjects. The application is completely digital and can be completed by navigating to the Office of Research Compliance website (link below) and clicking myProtocol at the bottom of the page.


Selecting a dissertation topic is a daunting task but it is not an impossible task. You must focus on what you are most interested in and use that to guide your path to finding your topic. It may be beneficial to select at least three possible avenues for your research, three areas in which you are most interested. Once you've identified these areas of interest you should seek out literature on those topics. Read as much as you can on your three potential topics or until you have reached saturation (the literature begins to repeat itself). At this point you should have narrowed your focus down to the topic that you find the most interesting and can begin working from there with the guidance of your dissertation director.

See below for more advice on selecting an appropriate dissertation topic.

Please consult dissertation writing sources at the bottom of this guide for additional resources.

The introduction is the first chapter of the dissertation proposal. It is in this chapter that you will make a case for your study while also introducing the topic or problem that is being addressed by the study. The writer should strive to provide a historical background of the topic, including any relevant trends over time as well as the theoretical background of the topic. You may choose to discuss the education theory underpinnings of your topic such as how the topic is related to education theory. Another important subject that should be discussed during the introduction is the importance of the study and what it could offer to the field. Finally, the writer must include the research questions or hypothesis that are being addressed by the study.

Generally, the introduction is broken down into three overarching sections: (a) Introduction (b) Statement of Problem, (c) Purpose of the Study, (d) Hypothesis or Research Questions, (e) Limitations/Delimitations, and (f) Definitions.

The review of literature typically begins with a general, theoretical overview of the topic(s) followed by brief summaries of the articles or studies related to the topic(s). The literature review should be organized by subject areas related to the general topic. If several topics are to be reviewed, divide the review according to these topics. If a pilot study was conducted, it should be described either in the review of the literature or in the procedures section of Chapter III. Typically, the review of literature will cover the essential variables or concepts presented in each hypothesis or question.

The following contain recommendations related to the review of literature:

  • Describe existing studies relative to the study; when and where latest research studies were completed; and brief details related to design and results.
  • Include various theoretical positions relevant to bases for the hypotheses or research questions.
  • Establish a rationale or need for the study.
  • Paraphrase most of the literature review and quote sparingly.
  • In general, the literature review provides the depth of knowledge needed to fully understand the problem developed in Chapter I.
  • Finally, the literature review sets the stage for the introduction of the methodology in Chapter III. The design and methodology of the study is to flow logically from other studies in the literature. All items to be included in a survey or questionnaire must first be developed through existing literature.

Please consult dissertation writing sources at the bottom of this guide for additional resources.

Chapter III should begin with an introduction which describes the content and organization of the chapter. This chapter is critical to future replication and should be the most thorough and precise of the dissertation. It is also important to mention that this chapter should be written in future tense, as you will be discussing what you intend to do for your study. You will change this chapter to past tense after the proposal.

(a) Research Design. First the research methodology or approach (e.g., experimental, quasi-experimental, correlational, casual-comparative, or survey) is described. The experimental or quasi-experimental design should be specified. The advantages and limitations of this design should be noted. A diagram of the design is very useful. The independent and dependent variables must be clearly described. Attention should be given to how all extraneous variables are to be controlled. Note that the research design and statistical design are not identical. This section should be limited to the research design. Threats to internal and external validity should be discussed.

(b) Participants. This section should include a demographic description of the participants used, including the number of subjects. The description of the subjects should include information on the sample and the population. Methods used to select subjects and solicit participation should be described. If parental consent is required, how it will be obtained should be explained. The type of institution with which the subjects are associated (if applicable) should be described.

(c) Instrumentation. This section includes a description of all instrumentation or tasks for which quantitative or qualitative data are obtained (e.g., tests, measures, observations, scales, questionnaires, interviews, focus groups, etc.) These instruments may be used as measures for the independent, dependent, or organismic variable(s).

The description of each instrument must include the following: a discussion of what the instrument is designed to measure, a description of the scales or subtests on the instrument, a discussion of how the items were derived, how the instrument is scored, the norms (if any) for the instrument, and the reliability and validity data concerning the instrument.

Depending upon the type of study, why this instrument was selected may need to be explained. If a pilot study was done to establish either or both the validity and reliability of the instrument, it should be described and the results given.

Any survey or questionnaire developed for specific use in the research must be justified. For example, categories or items included on a questionnaire should be based on the review of literature.

(d) Materials. This section includes a description of any materials used during the study, such as laboratory apparatus, tape recordings, and drawings. Usually these are materials used as part of the experimental treatment.

(e) Procedures. This section includes a detailed account of what was done with (or to) the participants, where it was done, the order in which it was done, and any other relevant information. Procedures used to control for extraneous variables should be discussed. This section is essentially a description of data collection methods and procedures. If assistants were used, these should be discussed as well as substantiation of their ability to carry out the appropriate procedures. Post-experimental explanations or debriefing sessions should be explained in this section.

(f) Data Analysis. All data processing and analyses should be discussed in this section. The appropriateness of statistical analyses should be covered. Any post hoc comparisons should be described. The level of significance should be given in this section. If packaged computer programs are utilized, describe and reference these. If analytic procedures other than statistical analyses are used, they should be described and justified. All analytic procedures must be appropriate for the hypotheses or questions under investigation.

Throughout the course of your research, you will collect much data. Keeping your data organized will be one of the keys to success during your dissertation journey. As a result, it is advised to use a matrix, which will let you group your study into sections based on the individual research questions. Every matrix will be different for every study. Please review the examples below.

Matrix Example


Much of your time and effort will be focused on the content of your dissertation proposal. However, it is wise to also examine the formatting of your document. One of the final steps of the dissertation is submitting the finalized document to the library for review. This is a long process that begins with your dissertation director, dissertation committee, graduate coordinator, College of Education, and the MSU Library. Ensuring that your dissertation document follows the appropriate formatting guidelines as specified by the APA Publication Manual, College of Education, and the MSU Library will save you much time. Below you will find a list of common dissertation errors shared by the College of Education.

Common Dissertation Errors

Upon completing the dissertation and checking for errors, the student should send a copy of the dissertation to all graduate committee members along with the dissertation director. Please give ten days after submitting the dissertation proposal before requesting a date and time for the oral proposal defense.

Once the student has finished the dissertation proposal and submitted it to the graduate committee and dissertation director, they should contact the major professor with a completed Announcement of Proposal Dissertation Defense Form (see below). Students should include multiple possible dates for the defense. It is also important to keep in mind that the dates listed must be a minimum of fifteen working days from the date the form is signed. The student is also required to submit both a hard copy and an e-copy of the dissertation proposal to his/her committee members.

Dissertations will be evaluated as follows: (a) accepted proposal as presented, (b) accepted the poposal with minor changes, (c) accepted the dissertation topic as a legitamate area for study; but poposal needs major revision, or (d) rejected the proposal as unacceptable as an ready of study for the dissertation. Below you may also find the dissertation proposal and oral presentation rubric.

Ph.D. Proposal and Oral Presentation Rubric
Announcement of Proposal Dissertation Defense Form

Dissertation Writing Resources

American Psychological Association. (2010). Publication Manual of the American

Psychological Association (6th ed.). Washington, D.C.

Best, J.W., & Kanh, J.V.(2003). Research in education.

Boston, MA: SAGE Publishing Inc.

Bolker, J. (1998). Writing your dissertation in fifteen minutes: A guide to starting,

revising, and finishing your doctoral thesis. New York, NY: Owl Books.

Butin, D.W.(2010) The education dissertation: A guide for practitioner scholars.

Thousand Oaks, CA: Corwin.

Caldwell, S. (2012). Statistics unplugged (4th ed.). Belmont, CA: Wadsworth.

Creswell, J.W. (2014). Research design: Qualitative, quantitative, and mixed

methods (4th ed.). Thousand Oaks, CA: SAGE Publications, Inc.

Davis, G.B., Parker, C.A., & Straub, D.W. (2012). Writing the doctoral dissertation:

A systematic approach (3rd edition).

Fraenkel, J.F., Wallen, N.E., & Hyun, H.H. (2012). How to design and evaluate

research in Education. New York: McGraw Hill.

Gall, J.P., Gall, M.D., & Borg, W.R. (1999). Applying educational research: A practical

guide. New York: Longman.

Galvan, J.L. (2012). Writing literature reviews: A guide for students of the social and

behavioral sciences (5th ed.). Glendale, CA: Pyrczak Publishing.

Gay, L.R., Mills, G.E., & Airasian, P. (2012). Educational research: Competencies for

analysis and application. Boston, MA: Pearson Education, Inc.

Office of Graduate School. Guidelines for Preparing Dissertations and Theses.

Mississippi State University.

Kranthwohl, D.R. & Smith, N.L. (2005). How to prepare a dissertation proposal:

Suggestions for students in education and the social and behavioral sciences.

Syracuse, NY: Syracuse University Press.

Lawrence, L.A. (2012). The literature review: Six steps to success. Thousand Oaks,

CA: Corwin.

Locke, L.F., Spirduso, W.W., Silverman, S.J. (2013). Proposals that work: A guide for

planning dissertations and grant proposals. Thousand Oaks, CA: SAGE

Publications, Inc.

Ollhoff, J. (2011). How to write a literature review. Farmington, MN: Sparrow

Media Group, Inc.

Ridley, D. (2012). The literature review (2nd ed.). Los Angeles, CA: SAGE.

Roberts, C.M. (2010). The dissertation journey: A practical and comprehensive guide

to planning, writing, and defending your dissertation. (2nd ed.). Thousand Oaks,

CA: Corwin.

Wentz, E.A. (2013). How to design, write, and present a successful dissertation

proposal. Thousand Oaks, CA: SAGE publications, Inc.