Doctorate Higher Education Leadership: Degree Info

A Ph.D. in Educational Leadership program generally requires about 90 credit hours of coursework covering organizational management, policy development and leadership.

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Essential Information

A Doctor of Philosophy (Ph.D.) in Educational Leadership program prepares graduates for top-level administrative positions at colleges, educational research institutions or government agencies. While pursuing the Ph.D., students take courses that will help them develop their research skills and analyze data. They learn about trends in higher education, such as staffing and financial resources, policy issues and leadership theory. Possible program specializations include global issues in higher education or academia. Other requirements include examinations, a qualifying paper and a dissertation.


Doctor of Philosophy in Educational Leadership

Applicants to a Ph.D. program should have a master's degree, and some programs require experience in higher education. Students may have the opportunity to tailor their course of study by focusing on special topics in the foundations of higher education, on academia as a profession, on student development or on higher education from an international perspective.

Programs teach students how policy analysis, student affairs, organizational culture and finance are interrelated in higher education settings, and might include the following courses:

  • Leadership theories
  • Student affairs
  • Politics and policy
  • Law in higher education
  • Governance in higher education
  • Instruction in higher education

Popular Career Options

Graduates of Ph.D. programs have multiple career options in higher education administration, government agencies or research. Graduates also pursue opportunities outside the education field and may work in libraries, human resources, information technology or purchasing. Some popular career options include the following:

  • Faculty member
  • Dean
  • Teaching
  • Research

A Ph.D. program in educational leadership will provide students with specialized education in major areas of education administration and management. Different programs may offer different areas of specialization, depending on their particular interests.

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