Online Doctorate of Education: Program Options

Dec 04, 2019

Essential Information

Several schools offer Doctor of Education programs that incorporate online classes and seminars. These programs usually also require brief on-campus residencies. In the online courses, students may be able to view lectures and complete class assignments on their own schedules. They can usually interact with professors and other students via the Web as well.

Doctor of Education degree programs train educators to be leaders of teachers and administrators. Some programs allow students to choose an area of specialization, such as teacher leadership, special education, higher education administration and adult education. These programs usually require about two years of full-time study to complete.

A Doctor of Education degree program focuses on research. Students generally complete courses that give them a foundational knowledge of research methodology in education. Gathering data and developing and presenting a thesis or a final research project is a major part of the doctoral program. Students take several courses in their area of specialization and base their thesis on that subject.

As a prerequisite, students applying to these programs need to have a master's degree. Students will also need to have accesses to software programs, such as Adobe Acrobat Professional, Adobe Acrobat Reader, Microsoft Office Professional and Norton Antivirus, to complete online coursework.

Doctor of Education Degree

This online doctoral program is intensive to education and includes courses in educational leadership, program management and educational research. Students acquire skills that help them direct teachers and administrators to use funds in ways beneficial for schools, create solid curricula and develop new ways to help students learn. To be eligible for the doctoral degree program, students usually must have at least a master's degree. There are several doctoral degree programs in education available online.

Information and Requirements

The online Doctor of Education program is available through a hybrid format. Students complete some courses online, some through Webinars and others through on-campus residencies. To complete the courses, students log onto the university's Web-based application, where they can interact with other classmates, discuss questions with professors, watch video lectures, complete assignments and take tests.

Students must have high-speed Internet and a working computer to complete the program. Software programs, such as Adobe Acrobat Professional, Adobe Acrobat Reader, Microsoft Office Professional and Norton Antivirus, are also required.

Common Online Education Courses

The online doctoral degree program in education can be completed asynchronously at most schools, with students completing courses entirely on their own time. Some schools also require that students participate in activities on-campus that can be completed at certain times throughout the year.

Cultural and Social Analysis of Education Systems

This course introduces students to various forms of classroom management, classroom reform and studies the way various social groups interact. Students analyze and apply research pertaining to different systems of educational instruction and classroom management techniques.

Conflict Management

This core course trains students to resolve conflicts between groups of people by analyzing the severity of the differences and finding common ground. Students discuss factors that play a role in conflict management, such as ineffective communication, different personal styles and different values.

Leadership for Schools

Students examine how leadership communities operate so they can understand the changing needs of the community. They study modern research in school leadership and learn practical ways to apply it.

Policies: Public and Institutional

Students study issues related to the operating effectiveness of an education institution. They learn about the politics that surround teaching principles and practices, organizational methods, classroom management and even the way the school is viewed by local, state and federal organizations.

Trends, Issues and Perspectives in Global Leadership

This course helps teachers of adult learners make their classroom's learning experience more effective. Students analyze the role technology, brain research and globalization play in learning trends and teaching styles.

Career Information

With a doctorate in education, students can find careers as university professors, human resource consultants, education administrators or school superintendents. According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, the demand for education administrators, including principals and vice principals, is expected to grow by four percent between 2018 and 2028 ( The median annual salary for elementary and secondary school administrators was $95,310 in 2018, while post-secondary administrators made $94,340.

Teachers and education administrators who have masters degree and are looking to take on a greater leadership role may benefit from pursuing a Doctor of Education degree. With online courses and brief on-campus residencies, these programs allow aspiring education leaders to specialize in areas like teacher leadership, special education, higher education administration and adult education.

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