EdD in Educational Leadership

The Doctor of Education in educational leadership is an innovative program premised on the belief that theory and practice must be combined in a hands-on learning environment that focuses on learning by doing. This degree program is intended for practicing professionals in K-12, higher education, and other educational organizations who wish to further develop and enhance their leadership capacity. Rather than the typical lecture classroom, seminars are held in a setting where faculty and students meet as equals and share ideas and presentations.


Applicants must have a minimum grade point average of 3.500 on a 4.000 scale for all graduate-level hours. In addition, applicants must have validated strengths on the multiple indicators listed as follows:

  1. Official transcripts of all college-level work completed, and indication of a degree conferral;
  2. Evidence of three years of formal experience in P-12, higher education, or other educational organizations;
  3. At least three letters of recommendation from supervisors and/or professional peers that attest to the applicant’s potential for success as an educational leader;
  4. A current resume or curriculum vita of educational and professional experience;
  5. A brief, one-page statement of professional goals related to the completion of the doctoral degree in educational leadership; and
  6. A sample of academic writing (such as a published article or paper written for a graduate-level course).

Review of completed applications begins in the fall semester. Applications are accepted until June 1st. Summer admission only.

Program Requirements

Completion of the EdD in educational leadership requirements include 55 graduate credit hours (including a minimum of 15 dissertation hours), comprehensive examinations, and an approved dissertation.

Required Courses

EL 968Technology Orientation1
EL 969Introduction to Educational Research and Academic Writing3
EL 970Theoretical Research Perspectives and Applications for Educational Leadership3
EL 981Introduction to Field-Based Research5
EL 971Contemporary Policy and Organizational Theories in Education3
EL 982Introduction to Field-Based Research II5
EL 984Theoretical Frameworks for Organizational Analysis3
EL 983Research Proposal Development3
EL 972Leadership Theories Seminar3
EL 986Advanced Field-Based Research I5
EL 987Advanced Field-Based Research II3
EL 989Research Design3
EL 999Dissertation Research3
EL 999Dissertation Research6
EL 999Dissertation Research6
Total Credit Hours55

The five-member dissertation com­mittee will include at least three university professors holding graduate faculty status (the chair must hold graduate faculty status), one member must hold affiliate graduate faculty status, and an outside department university professor who also holds graduate faculty status who will serve as the graduate dean’s representative. See Graduate Faculty for graduate faculty status definitions.

Applied Learning

Students in the educational leadership (EdD) program are required to complete an applied learning or research experience to graduate from this program. The requirement can by met by completing the dissertation.