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Doctor of Education (Ed.D.) in Educational Leadership

Program Description
Program of Study
Course Rotation
Program Resources
Program Faculty

Program Description

The Doctor of Education in Educational Leadership is the College of Education’s highest degree preparing leaders for pre K-12 and Higher Education. Concentrations in Educational Administration and Higher Education Administration share a core of doctoral studies and branch to more focused curricula with specialty courses. Typically, students enter the programs with substantial knowledge, skills, abilities, and experience. The program supports their further development as scholars, researchers, and, especially, as leaders. Those core areas of the programs are represented in the curriculum and are the foundation of assessment as students journey from admissions to program completion.

Undergirded throughout the program by a deepening understanding of leadership theory and practice, students as scholars master content and develop the necessary dispositions and skills to conduct useful education research. Finally, based on a deep understanding of leadership developed through coursework and guided practicum experiences, Doctors of Education demonstrate the ability to use their knowledge, dispositions, and skills as leaders, scholars and researchers in applied leadership settings.


The admissions requirements and procedures are detailed in the Idaho State University (ISU) Graduate Catalog. Students are required to adhere to policies and procedures outlined in the ISU Graduate Catalog. Students must maintain a 3.2 grade point average to qualify for the Doctor of Education. Two grades of C+ or below during the entire program will result in Doctoral Advisory Committee review of student performance with the possibility of dismissal.

Program of Study

Doctoral of Education in Educational Leadership requires the following credits of course work: For Educational Administration, 18 credits in the doctoral core and a minimum of 24 credits in the area of concentration. For Higher Education Administration, 17 credits in the doctoral core and 39 credits in the area of concentration, including 6 credits of electives. Both emphasis include 9 credits of graduate level (500 or above) cognate study (determined in consultation with the student’s advisor and concentration area review), and at least 10 dissertation credits. The student may select from the following areas of emphasis: Educational Administration, or Higher Education Administration.

Doctoral Core Studies (18 credits)
  • EDLP 7700 Change Strategies (3 credits)
  • EDLP 7703 Leadership & Organizational Development (3 credits)
  • EDLP 7705 Advanced Research Design – Qualitative (3 credits)
  • EDLP 7706 Advanced Research Design – Quantitative (3 credits)
  • EDLP 7721 Intermediate Educational Statistics (3 credits)
    EDLP 7722 Advanced Statistics in Education (3 credits)
  • EDLP 8800 Doctoral Seminar (1 credit)
  • EDLP 8801 Capstone Seminar (1 credit)
  • EDLP 8830 Doctoral Comprehensive Exams (1 credit)

Dissertation (10 credits)

  • EDLP 8850 Dissertation (A&B) 10 credits
Area of Concentration (student selects one emphasis area):
Educational Administration (minimum of 24 credits)
  • EDLA 6643 School Personnel Administration (3 cr)
  • EDLA 6662 Superinterdency (3 cr)
  • EDLA 6664 Public School Monetary and Business Policy (3 cr)
  • EDLA 7720 Legal Issues in Educational Organizations (3 credits)
  • EDLA 7721 Educational Policy & Governance (3 credits)
  • EDLA 7723 Educational Planning & Evaluation (3 credits)
  • EDLA 7724 Data Informed Instructional Leadership (3 credits)
  • EDLA 7737 Practicum (6 credits)
  • Electives (9 credits)
  • Cognate Study 9 credits
    Cognate Study (minimum 9 graduate level credit (5500 or above)—to be determined prior to cognate study enrollment, in consultation with the student’s advisor and confirmed by concentration area review).
Higher Education Administration (minimum of 39 credits)
  • EDLH 7730 History & Philosophy of Higher Education (3 credits)
  • EDLH 7731 Law in Higher Education (3 credits)
  • EDLH 7732 College & University Curriculum (3 credits)
  • EDLH 7733 Finance in Higher Education (3 credits)
  • EDLH 7734 Issues/Trends in Higher Education (3 credits)
  • EDLH 7736 Instructional Leadership & Faculty Affairs in Higher Education (3 credits)
  • EDLH 7737 Practicum (3 credits)
  • EDLH 7738 Assessment & Accountability in Higher Education (3 credits)
  • Cognate Study (9 credits)
    Cognate Study (minimum 9 graduate level credit (5500 or above)—to be determined prior to cognate study enrollment, in consultation with the student’s advisor and confirmed by concentration area review).
Electives (3 credits):
  • EDLH 7735 Government and External Relations (3 credits)
  • EDLC 7730 The Modern Community College (3 credits)
  • EDLH 7739 Higher Ed Leadership: Strategic & Enrollment Planning, Governance, and Institutional Research (3 credits)
  • COUN 6680 Foundations of Student Affairs (3 credits)
  • EDLA 6630 Education Equity & Ethics (3 credits)

Comprehensive Examinations
Candidates are required to take written comprehensive examinations over the Doctoral Core and may take written comprehensive exams over the Higher Education Educational Administration emphasis. An alternative comprehensive exam that consists of a Case Study may make the place of the written comps over the Higher Education emphasis. Comps are normally written during or immediately following the last semester in which the candidate takes formal course work. Procedures for comps are explained in the EDLP 8801 Capstone Seminar.

Continuous Enrollment
Once candidates begin the Ed.D. program, they are required to maintain continuous enrollment, including during summers, throughout the program.

Course Rotation

Course Rotation PDF

Program Resources

Ed.D. Handbook PDF

Program Faculty

Educational Administration Emphasis
Dr. Mark Neill
Dr. Gloria Jean Thomas (.5)
Dr. Gary Storie

Higher Education Administration Emphasis
Dr. Paul Watkins
Dr. Gloria Jean Thomas (.5)
Dr. Alan Frantz

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