The Doctor of Education (Ed.D.) program is a 90-quarter credit (post-master's) interdepartmental degree offered by the SPU School of Education. The Ed.D. program serves school practitioners who are primarily interested in preparing for a variety of leadership positions in educational systems, including superintendent, district office, school counseling, and other areas.
In addition, the program also serves students interested in other related careers in education, including nonprofit and higher-education administration, and other education-related professions. It can be tailored to meet varied professional needs and interests. This degree is for active professionals interested in leadership positions in all fields and levels of education.
For additional program information, see the Doctoral Handbook (PDF).
COURSE OF STUDY
Using the educational benefits of collaborative and cooperative learning combined with continued professional association, the program uses a cohort approach for core doctoral classes. Once admitted to the program, you proceed though these cohort courses as a group, following a defined schedule and sequence. Cohort courses are noted with an asterisk in the following listings.
Because this is an interdepartmental degree, you select courses and learning experiences with the assistance of the director of doctoral studies, from a variety of areas and opportunities in the School of Education, or from other schools within Seattle Pacific University (subject to approval by the School of Education Doctoral Committee).
AREAS OF SPECIALIZATION
LEADERSHIP COLLOQUIUM AND COMPREHENSIVE EXAMS
After approximately one year of coursework (24 credits), you may register for the leadership colloquium (EDU 7990). This requires you to write a scholarly paper and present that paper in a formal setting to the educational community.
Graduate faculty of the School of Education conduct an evaluation of the scholarship and colloquium. The leadership colloquium must be taken before you can take the comprehensive exams.
Upon completion of all courses, you must pass written comprehensive examinations. These examinations will cover the foundations, professional and research components of the core, and your area of specialization. Successful completion of the comprehensive examination advances you to the doctoral candidacy.
Under the direction of a faculty dissertation advisor and committee, you complete a dissertation project during the final phase of the degree program. The dissertation is designed to integrate theories and tools learned throughout the program, and should demonstrate your mastery of concepts and methods. As a final demonstration of scholarly competence, you prepare a written dissertation report and conduct an oral presentation/defense.
The dissertation requirement may be demonstrated by a study of an educational problem such as curriculum evaluation, development and evaluation of administrative models, field testing of a diagnostic tool or curricular material, or development and evaluation of educator training models. It may also take the traditional form of a research study. You are encouraged to take additional research courses linked to your specific dissertation methods and design.
You will choose problems of practice originating from external practitioners and policymakers, generated through the suggestion and review of faculty members. External practitioners may include school districts, educational service districts (ESDs), universities, state agencies, and research groups.
Because the doctoral program requires considerable faculty time and resources, a limited number of students will be admitted to the program each year. It is expected that all applicants will have at least a bachelor's degree (135-credit doctorate) or a master's degree (90-credit doctorate) from a regionally accredited college or university.
Cohort classes begin each summer. Screening applicants for admission is an ongoing process and you may be admitted to the program throughout the year so you can begin needed prerequisites, foundations, and elective courses.
PROGRAM AND ENROLLMENT POLICIES
At the time of admission, you may transfer up to 15 post-master's degree credits into the doctoral program with the approval of the director of doctoral studies. Courses transferred must be graduate level, from a regionally accredited institution and relevant to your course of doctoral study.
GRADE POINT AVERAGE
You must complete all requirements for the doctoral degree within five years from the quarter the first post-admission course was taken. Students needing more than five years to complete the degree must file a time-extension petition with the director of doctoral studies.
APPLICATION AND ADMISSIONS QUESTIONS
Seattle Pacific University