Educational leadership Ph.D. programs emphasize high-level theoretical and practical aspects of education which requires applicants to have significant undergraduate and graduate coursework in the education field before applying. Areas of interest or specialization, as well as defined career goals, are usually needed when applying and will help during the research project phase of the program. Some program specializations include public school administration and college level administration. Reference letters from professors or supervisors and a personal statement are also requirements.
These programs typically require a dissertation and most states will require a certification exam in addition to the Ph.D. degree prior to obtaining a position in the field.
Find schools that offer these popular programs
- Adult Education Administration
- Community College Education
- Educational and Curriculum Supervision
- Educational Leadership
- Higher Education Administration
- K thru 8 Administration and Principalship
- Secondary School Administration
- Special Education Administration
- Superintendency Education
- Urban Education Leadership
Leadership in Educational Administration Doctoral Degree
Aspiring students in the Educational leadership Ph.D. programs will need to draw from their undergraduate and graduate education to complete the advanced courses required of the Ph.D. program. In addition to pursuing specific courses in areas of specialization, students will also conduct research projects focused on their area of interest. Typical course offerings include:
- Education organizational analysis
- Educational policymaking
- Educational research design
- Statistics in education
- Educational finance
- Higher education administration
Popular Career Options
People who earn Ph.D. degrees in educational leadership have several career options in most levels of academia. Depending on their specializations, graduates can hold the following positions:
- University dean
- Community college administrator
- School district superintendent
- High school principal
- Educational policy researcher
Salary and Career Outlook
The U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics predicted a 9% increase in jobs for postsecondary education administrators from 2014-2024. In May 2015, the mean annual wage for postsecondary education administrators, which includes several different positions, including provosts, deans and registrars, was $102,610. Education administrators who worked for elementary and secondary schools made an average of $92,940 per year. They were expected to see only a 6% increase in jobs, lower than the national average for all occupations.
Licensure and Continuing Education Information
Many educational administrative positions require state licensure in addition to advanced degrees. Many states require principals, vice principals and superintendents to pass a written exam and complete a supervised internship. Administrative positions at the postsecondary level don't require licensure, but applicants usually need extensive work experience to be hired.
Leadership in educational administration doctorate degrees prepare students for a career as a university dean or school district superintendent, among others.