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PhD in Learning Sciences and Computer Science

About the Program

The Joint PhD Program in Computer Science and Learning Sciences builds on enduring and growing connections between research on learning and computation. Rapid technological advances continue to create new and exciting ways to both understand and support learning in all settings and in all stages of life. This program is intended for students with an interest in both fields who would otherwise be forced to choose one area or the other.

Overarching Themes

Sociocultural Contexts

Examining the social, organizational and cultural dynamics of learning and teaching situations, including classrooms, schools, school districts, museums, corporations and homes.


Constructing scientific models of the structures and processes of learning and teaching by which organized knowledge, skills and understanding are acquired.


Building environments for learning and teaching, incorporating multimedia, artificial intelligence, computer networks and innovative curriculum and classroom activity structures.

Curriculum Overview

Course work in the Learning Sciences and Computer Science doctoral program includes a core curriculum and electives.

units of required coursework
core LS + CS faculty members

View Curriculum

Our Students

Developing the next generation of leaders at the intersection of computer science and learning sciences.

Average number of enrolled students
Average number of years to complete the program
Connor Bain photo

Computer science is a tool in both education and science classrooms. You can apply it to whatever you’re interested in and that was the intersection I was looking for. It also requires us to question and reimagine the ways we teach computation– to connect it to students’ lives, rather than casting it as something that ‘other people’ do.”

—Connor Bain
Assistant Professor of Instruction, McCormick School of Engineering, Northwestern University. First graduate of the Learning Sciences and Computer Science PhD program, class of 2021

Contact Learning Sciences and Computer Science

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Physical Address:
Walter Annenberg Hall  
2120 Campus Drive  
Evanston, IL 60208