Doctor of Education: Curriculum and Instruction Degree Overview

Oct 13, 2019

A Doctor of Education in Curriculum and Instruction can lead to various leadership roles in the education field. These programs help students enhance their research skills, allowing them to solve educational problems.

Essential Information

A Doctor of Education (Ed.D.) in Curriculum and Instruction is a professional degree program. While Ph.D.s are also offered, the Ed.D. focuses on practice and applying research to common educational problems; Ph.D. programs are centered around theory and conducting research. Individuals can gain skills in scholarly writing and presentation while developing their dissertations. Specialization options include administrative studies, higher education, instructional technology and curriculum studies.

A master's degree is generally required for admission into Ed.D. programs, although some also accept students who only have bachelor's degrees. Many programs require applicants to submit transcripts and goal statements. Some programs also ask applicants for a writing sample, a professional resume and GRE scores.

Doctor of Education in Curriculum and Instruction

Students in Ed.D. in Curriculum and Instruction programs learn about or expand their knowledge in educational practice, teacher education and interpretation of research. Most programs educate their students in designing, implementing and evaluating curricula for a variety of learners. Students also learn about ethical issues related to education. Programs address theoretical frameworks, applying them to school environments, teaching, learning and teacher development. Students also develop skills in leadership, supervision and collaboration. These programs also offer individuals information on how to create, use and measure the effectiveness of materials in education. In general, students study topics such as:

  • Literacy
  • Learning assessment
  • Educational research
  • Teaching issues
  • Instructional technology
  • Curriculum design

Popular Career Options

Having gained skills in curriculum design and research, individuals who obtain a Doctor of Education in Curriculum and Instruction may pursue careers in higher education or in leadership roles in K-12 education. Individuals may choose positions as:

  • Curriculum specialist
  • Curriculum administrator
  • College faculty
  • School principal
  • Preschool director

Employment Outlook and Salary Information

According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS), demand for elementary and secondary school principals is expected to grow by 4% between 2018 and 2028, and demand for postsecondary school teachers in education may increase by 8% over that period. Employment opportunities for instructional coordinators are likely to expand by 6% over the 2018-2028 decade, as reported by the BLS.

Instructional coordinators earned a median annual wage of $64,450 in May 2018, and postsecondary teachers in education earned a median annual wage of $64,780 that year, based on data from the BLS. The BLS also states that elementary and secondary education administrators earned a median annual wage of $95,310 in May 2018.

Continuing Education and Licensure

Individuals seeking educational leadership positions in public schools need a state-issued license in order to work as a school principal, superintendent or preschool director, according to the BLS. Licensure requirements vary by state, but generally require candidates to pass an exam.

By earning an Ed.D. in Curriculum and Instruction, students gain the advanced educational knowledge they need for high-level positions in the field.

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