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Doctor of Educational Leadership (EdD)

Students in a classroom

Our program prepares educators for government and private sector top-level P-20 administrative and policy-making positions.

Overview & Distinctions


D’Youville’s Educational Leadership students gain real-world research and policy analysis experience that confronts key challenges faced by educational institutions. Students also make life-changing connections with fellow peers in the doctoral program, who serve in a variety of administrative and leadership positions throughout the region. The network of EDL alumni is growing and provides an impressive range of opportunities for research and professional growth.

Through disciplined discussions, student presentations at regional and national conferences, awards dinners and social seminars, students engage with peers, faculty, local and regional leaders and researchers. Coursework not only includes the traditional academic paper which prepares students for the dissertation, but also incorporates the crafting of policy briefs and other projects that apply classroom learning to the student’s practice site and the education profession at large.

Our graduates go on to advance their careers, with many now occupying senior leadership positions in K12 and post-secondary educational institutions; many conduct nationally recognized research, are noted policy analysts, and innovators of educational practice.

Our program can be completed part-time or full-time and is ideal for working professionals who want to give their career a boost. Most courses are offered during evenings, using a hybrid (50% online format), with many offered during the summer.

What You'll Learn

  • Research and evaluation methods, including an array of quantitative and qualitative data analysis techniques and designs.
  • The foundations for writing the dissertation with an early start on the dissertation process.
  • An examination of cutting-edge research into the history and future of education policy, the relationship between education and inequality, and the significance of culture, gender and identity for school and university leaders.
  • Analysis of the legal and policy dynamics surrounding the finance and governance of education, as well as advanced study of assessment, accreditation, curricular issues, and community relations.

D'Youville Advantages

  • Our program can be completed part-time or full-time, ideal for working professionals who want to give their career a boost. Most courses are offered during evenings, using a hybrid (50% online format), with many offered during the summer.
  • Our faculty bring a diverse range of research, education, and professional experience to the classroom, providing you with a comprehensive education informed by real-world experience.
  • Through close interactions with faculty and collaboration with classmates, you’ll develop the kinds of professional and personal networks that will support you as you progress through the program and your career.
  • Collaborate and network with peer learners in a small-class environment.
  • Benefit from D'Youville's admissions partnerships.


We offer an increasing number of scholarship and financial aid opportunities for doctoral students, including articulation agreements and discounts for military veterans.



The Educational Leadership EdD curriculum combines research, academic study, and real-world learning opportunities to create a robust, interactive learning experience.

Find detailed course information for the Doctor of Educational Leadership (EdD) Program, tools to plan your education, and complete academic policies and procedures in the D'Youville academic catalog.

Credits required for EdD courses 50
Transfer Credits 40
Total Credits 90

Course Requirements for the Program

Research Core

EDL-732 Advanced Statistics & Lab 4
EDL-733 Quantitative Research Design 3
EDL-734 Qualitative Research Design 3
EDL-735 Case Study Method and Design 3
Total Credits 13

Academic Core

EDL-731 Doctoral Seminar 3
EDL-737 Inequality and Education 3
EDL-738 History & Future of Education Reform 3
EDL-739 Cultural Perspectives in Education 3
Total Credits 12

K-12 Professional Core

ELK-741 K-12 Education Governance, Law & Policy. 3
ELK-742 Education Finance & Planning 3
ELK-743 School-Community Relations 3
ELK-744 Curriculum, Instruction & Assessment Of Learning 3
ELK-745 Applied Research Practicum I 3
ELK-746 Applied Research Practicum II 3
Total Credits 18

Higher Education Professional Core

ELH-741 Higher Education Governance, Law and Policy 3
ELH-742 Higher Education & Strategic Planning 3
ELH-743 Higher Education Curriculum 3
ELH-744 Program Evaluation and Outcomes Assessment 3
ELH-745 Applied Research Practicum I 3
ELH-746 Applied Research Practicum II 3
Total Credits 18

No dissertation core courses can be taken until the Comprehensive Exam has been completed successfully.

Dissertation Core

EDL-752 Dissertation Proposal I 3
EDL-753 Dissertation Proposal II 2
EDL-831 Dissertation Guidance 4
Total Credits 9

Additional Requirements

In addition to the course work, students are also required to complete the following:

  • Complete the Comprehensive Examination at the completion of all coursework prerequisites to the dissertation. Students must successfully pass the comprehensive examination before proceeding to take Dissertation Proposal I (EDL-752).
  • Present a defense of the dissertation proposal and completed dissertation. 



D'Youville graduates become top-level administrators, superintendents, and education analysts who make a difference in the schools, colleges, universities and communities they serve.*

Higher Education

For higher education administrators, D'Youville's doctoral program in Educational Leadership enhances the leadership and managerial abilities needed in colleges and universities.

K-12 Administrators

Doctoral degrees are often the preferred qualifications for district leadership positions.

*The Educational Leadership EdD program is not intended to lead to certification as a school principal.

Admission Requirements

Admission Requirements

Prospective applicants must forward the following materials to the graduate admissions office:

  • A completed, no-cost application.
  • Official undergraduate and graduate transcripts of all institutions attended.

In addition to the application procedure, candidates must present the following:

  • A completed Master's degree in education or a related field.
  • Evidence of leadership and professionalism in education or a related field.
  • A minimum graduate grade point average of 3.5 (based on a 4.0 system).
  • Two letters of professional recommendation.
  • Statement of Interest regarding your professional goals and objectives.
  • One writing sample from within your graduate program, at least 5 pages long.
  • Professional resume or curriculum vitae.
  • Students being considered for admission may be asked to come to campus to be interviewed by education leadership faculty.

Applications for admission are considered on a competitive basis; applicants meeting minimum requirements may not be admitted.

Personal Stories

Agnieszka Zak-Moskal

Agnieszka Zak-Moskal | Alumni Story

The work and research Agnieszka Zak-Moskal began during her Educational Leadership dissertation led to conferences, workshops, consulting opportunities, and even the landing of her dream job.

Read Her Story
Catherine Huber

Catherine Huber | Alumni Story

Catherine Huber took on new roles as a leader and broadened the ways in which she thinks about public education with D'Youville's Educational Leadership program.

Read Her Story

Bonnie Fox Garrity

Bonnie Fox Garrity | Alumni Story

In D'Youville's Educational Leadership program, you'll share ideas, connect, and work with like-minded peers. Dr. Fox Garrity used that environment and the program's flexibility to advance her career as an educator and researcher.

Read Her Story
Timothy Oldenburg

Timothy Oldenburg | Alumni Quote

"I am extremely confident in performing the duties and responsibilities of my job due to the transformative experience I had as a student at D'Youville. The requirements of the program changed me as an educational leader and as a person."

— Timothy Oldenburg, Superintendent of Schools for the City of Tonawanda

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