Higher Education

Higher Education (EdD)

The EdD in Higher Education prepares accomplished higher education leaders for senior leadership positions in colleges and universities. Some students become faculty members in colleges or universities, using their higher education doctorate as a capstone for teaching in other disciplines, especially at the two-year college level, and in applied disciplines. Alumni include Provosts, Deans, and Directors in many areas, such as academic and student affairs, business, technology, continuing education and development. The program is designed to provide a rich intellectual and theoretical background combined with many applied experiences.

Program Objectives

Graduates of the EdD program in Higher Education will:

  • Demonstrate advanced understanding of the foundations of higher education, including knowledge of the history, politics, economics, and philosophy of higher education, theories of student development and organizations, and the institutional and social factors that contribute to student success in higher education.
  • Demonstrate a disciplined and analytic approach to professional practice in the organization and administration of academic and student affairs, including the use of assessment, evaluation, and research in decision-making; the ability to engage in strategic planning and goal-setting; the ability to lead with cultural sensitivity and ethical judgment; the ability to understand organizational behavior and dynamics; and the ability to communicate clearly and effectively about complex administrative issues to a wide array of audiences and stakeholders.
  • Demonstrate knowledge related to the functional core of the university, including teaching, research and service; management skills such as problem solving, planning, budgeting, fundraising, assessment and evaluation; and human relations skills such as managing conflict, effective communication, valuing diversity, and promoting organizational and individual development.
  • Gain a conceptual understanding of higher education organizations when viewed from multiple perspectives including organizations as academic enterprises, loosely coupled bureaucratic systems, and complex multifarious cultures, and be able to adopt those perspectives as analytic lenses for understanding and addressing administrative issues.
  • Demonstrate the ability to select and apply appropriate research and program evaluation designs and methods, including: An understanding of principles of research study design; the ability to synthesize relevant literature from across fields to inform practice and research; the ability to articulate and apply theory or conceptual frameworks to support analysis and evaluation; familiarity with an array of qualitative and quantitative methods and competence in data analysis strategies appropriate for contributing knowledge to advance effective higher education practice; and competence in academic writing conventions.
  • Enact habits of reflective and equity-conscious administrative practitioners, including conducting critical inquiry into issues of inequity or disparities in student access and success; engaging as learning agents on behalf of the institution; and collecting, interpreting, and communicating evidence to substantiate administrative issues.

Program Requirements

Explore our innovative coursework in your intended academic program.  Learn more about program requirements.

Ph.D. or Ed.D?

The PhD in Policy and Organizational Studies is research oriented whereas the EdD in Higher Education is directed towards educational practice and the application of theory and research. The EdD is equal in rigor, but different in substance from the PhD Find out more about the PhD versus the EdD.

How to Apply

Ready to turn opportunities into accomplishments? Learn about applying for admission.