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Educational Leadership and Policy Studies EdD, PhD

The Educational Leadership and Policy Studies program is not accepting new students at this time.

The Department of Educational Leadership (DEL) assumes a leading role locally, nationally, and internationally in preparing a new generation of transformative educational leaders and policy analysts committed to the pursuit of scholarship and serving those most in need. 

The doctoral program in Educational Leadership and Policy Studies is distinctive and unique because it:

  • combines different fields of study and disciplines. 
  • draws on highly qualified, interdisciplinary faculty and staff.
  • creates the opportunity for stronger partnerships and collaborations.
  • blends theory and and calls for the development of innovative pedagogies.
  • enables deeper reflection about educational achievement in environments that are dynamic, diverse, democratic and socially just.

Upon entering the program, students become part of a cohort who work together for the duration of the program. This model helps to encourage a more dynamic, supportive and collaborative learning environment.

The EdD path prepares reflective practitioners with the leadership and management skills necessary to transform educational institutions and improve student learning in a variety of school environments.

The PhD path is designed for those who wish to combine a strong base of theoretical knowledge with an individualized focus to analyze policy about PreK-12, postsecondary, and adult learning environments.

Degree requirements

  • Complete 82 credits of study (includes courses, colloquia, seminars and thesis)
  • Maintain a GPA of 3.0 or higher
  • Pass the written and oral comprehensive examination
  • Successfully defending a final dissertation
Michael Savaria, 2017 Graduate Commencement Student Speaker
Michael Savaria, PhD '17

Advocate for equal education opportunities

University requirements for graduate admissions

  • Statement of Purpose, minimum 300-600 words. Unless otherwise indicated in the program requirement details, indicate your graduate study objectives, research interests and experience, and business or industry experience if applicable. If you are applying for a teaching or research assistantship, include any special skills or experience that would assist us in making assistantship decisions.
  • Resume
  • Transcripts for all post-secondary institutions attended (regardless of whether a credential is earned or not). Unofficial transcripts are accepted for admissions application review, once enrolled a final official transcript is required.
  • Many programs have specific recommendations/requirements, please see the additional program-specific requirements for more information.
  • International students: official TOEFL, IELTS, Pearson PTE or Duolingo (if accepted by program) score. Unofficial scores are accepted for admissions application review, once enrolled official scores are required and must be sent by the testing agency (copies/scans not accepted). This is required of any applicant who did not earn a bachelor’s degree or higher degree from an accredited academic institution in the U.S. or accepted English-speaking country, see exemptions for more details. The Duolingo test is not accepted for the following programs: Art Education, Biology/Marine Biology, Luso-Afro-Brazilian Studies & Theory, Marine Science and Technology (MS, PSM, PhD), Nursing (MS, DNP, PhD), Portuguese Studies, Professional Writing and Communication, Psychology (ABA, Clinical, Research), Public Policy, and Teaching (MAT).

Program deadlines

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Course schedules and requirements