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PhD in Education - English Language Learning

Northcentral University's Ph.D. in Education with a specialization in English Language Learning program is designed to develop learners' knowledge of methods for assessing and instructing school-aged students whose primary language may not be English. Read more about this research-focused ESL program here.

Official Program Name:

Ph.D. in Education with a specialization in English Language Learning

School Offering Program:

Northcentral University

Degree Level:


Program Prerequisites:

Individuals interested in this program might include practicing teachers or related instructional professionals. Fluency in a second language may prove beneficial. Applicants to Northcentral University's online graduate programs should already possess a bachelor's degree; some programs may have additional requirements.

Program Description:

Participants enrolled in this Northcentral University program have the opportunity to learn techniques for developing curricula that are inclusive and targeted toward educating a population of culturally diverse students. They will have the chance to learn to create developmentally appropriate programs that adhere to governing norms in education. In addition, the curriculum is designed to examine strategies for teaching and evaluating English language learners as well as bilingual students. Individuals who are interested in seeking field-specific instructional certification or licensure should check with the appropriate agency to see if this course meets credentialing requirements.

Learning Format:


Program Length/Total Credits Required:

This program may be completed in 60 credit hours. However, students who need additional time to complete dissertation research can take up to an additional 15 credit hours, for a maximum allowance of 75 credit hours.

Financial Aid Available:

Financial aid is available to qualifying students. Graduate students may apply for Federal Stafford Loan or the Federal Graduate PLUS Loan. Military personnel and veterans may qualify for special assistance or tuition reduction.

Tuition, Financial Aid & Start Dates

Since every student is different, there isn't a "one size fits all" for school information. Start dates and tuition often vary between selected programs, and financial aid opportunities are unique to each student's circumstances. Complete the form to the right to get the most up-to-date and accurate information based on your selected program and circumstances.

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Required Courses for a Ph.D. in Education with a Specialization in English Language Learning

Program and course requirements are subject to change. Contact Northcentral University to confirm the most accurate information before enrolling in a program.

Doctor of Education Foundation Courses (24 credits)

  • Foundations for Graduate Study in Education
  • Advanced Scholarly Writing
  • Scholarly Literature Review
  • Research Methods
  • Statistics I
  • Statistics II
  • Advanced Qualitative Design and Measurement
  • Advanced Quantitative Design and Measurement
  • One additional Specialization or Elective Course

English Second Language Requirements (18 credits)

  • Instructional Practices
  • Cultural Diversity
  • Evaluation of Diverse Students
  • Bilingual Instructional Methods
  • Developing Curriculum for ESL Students
  • Second Language Foundations

Doctoral Comprehensive Examination (3 credits)

  • Doctoral Comprehensive Assessment: Pre-Candidacy Prospectus

Dissertation Requirements (12 credits)

  • Components of the Dissertation
  • The Dissertation Proposal
  • Institutional Review Board (IRB) and Data Collection
  • The Dissertation Manuscript and Defense

Post Graduation Opportunities

Career Paths:

Practicing educators who earn a Ph.D. in Education with a specialization in English Language Learning degree could be able to undertake ESL-specific instruction or administrative responsibilities within their district or school. In addition, opportunities could be found globally or domestically with K-12 schools, colleges, private instructional firms, government education departments, or education-centered not-for-profit organizations. Professionals in this field might undertake tasks in curriculum development, policy creation, research, or instruction.

Job titles that graduates of this Northcentral University program could be able to pursue might include:

  • English as a second language (ESL) specialist
  • College ESL instructor
  • Bilingual educational consultant

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