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  • Online Doctorate in Educational Leadership and Management (EdD)

    In a world where new technologies, federal mandates, and global issues are rapidly changing the landscape of education, the need for educator-leaders – primed to transform the practice and invent the future of learning – is more critical than ever. Drexel’s fully online EdD in Educational Leadership and Management program fosters personal leadership growth, empowering you to move ahead professionally.

    Nichole Hall EdD Student at Drexel University

    Ready to take the next step? Apply for Fall 2023 term by the priority deadline, June 5, 2023, to receive priority application review. Learn more.

    What is a Doctorate in Education?

    The Doctor of Education program is specifically designed to prepare innovative leaders, capable of guiding complex organizations through uncertain times. With its focus on evidence-based theory, action research, and collaborative discourse, you will challenge old ways of thinking, while learning to create new models of effective practice across a wide range of educational and business environments.

    Learn how to complete your EdD dissertation online.

    Online EdD Program Features

    • The EdD program can be completed in three or five years on a part-time basis, allowing you to work full-time while earning your degree.
    • There is no residency requirement—all courses and the dissertation process can be completed 100 percent online.
    • Ten diverse concentration options are available, allowing you to tailor your degree to your area of interest.
    • You will become part of a student cohort, providing ample opportunities to network and receive support from a cohesive community that learns and grows together.
    • The program’s accredited curriculum incorporates the expert knowledge and skills you must have to become an effective 21st century leader in educational or business environments – from instructional technology integration and transformative leadership, to strategic decision-making, institutional finance, and program evaluation.

    Priority Application Deadline

    Drexel University offers a priority deadline for the online EdD in Educational Leadership and Management. Applications submitted by the priority deadline will receive priority review by the committee, and accepted students will receive an earlier decision. The priority deadline for Fall 2023 is June 5, 2023.

    Applications are still accepted up until the regular deadline for the term. The regular deadline for Fall 2023 term is July 31, 2023.

    Concentration Options

    • Creativity and Innovation
      • Option A: Creativity and Innovation
        Provides an in-depth understanding of creativity, enhanced communication, and creative problem-solving; and explores how these may be applied to practical situations in the workplace.
      • Option B: Mind, Brain, Learning, and Innovation
        Looks at advancements in technology and research related to the human learning process and how this informs pedagogical practices across learning formats.
    • Educational Administration
      Examines the impact of education on major social issues and provides the skills and knowledge necessary to develop interdisciplinary models of curricula and teaching strategies. Pennsylvania Superintendent Letter of Eligibility is optional and accredited by the Council for the Accreditation of Educator Preparation (CAEP).
    • Education Policy
      Engages with policies and policy issues that have an impact on education, those working in it, and those served by it. Includes a heavy emphasis on the roles of ethics and ethical decision-making in policy development.
    • Global & International Education
      Reviews the complex economic, political, cultural, and social structures that shape learning in different parts of the world.
    • Higher Education Leadership
      • Option A: Administration, Leadership, & Assessment
        Examines the historical growth and advancement of colleges and universities in the U.S. with a look at the impact of variables such as the law, politics, and power structures.
      • Option B: Administration, Student Success, & Innovation
        Explores the connection between strategic enrollment management and institutional planning and sustainability with an examination of the student lifecycle from recruitment to the student experience to graduation.
    • Human Resource Development
      Produces 21st century leaders with the competencies and capabilities to facilitate workplace learning, performance, and change in any organizational setting.
    • Learning Technologies
      Teaches the skills needed to solve the technological learning challenges facing schools and businesses. Includes a focus on areas such as instructional design, performance support, virtual communities, learning in participatory culture, and e-learning leadership.
    • Nursing Education
      Prepares registered nurses to assume faculty positions while providing a robust interdisciplinary education between Drexel's School of Education and the College of Nursing and Health Professions. Those who wish to pursue this concentration must have an RN license.
    • Special Education Leadership
      Provides the unique leadership knowledge and skills needed to successfully direct programs within special education. Pennsylvania Supervisor of Special Education certification is optional.
    • Sport Leadership
      Provides skills and knowledge in communications, planning, evaluations, and ethical decision-making to create more effective and impactful leaders in sport who are valued assets in their athletic communities.

    The Drexel Difference

    Learn more about what makes Drexel's EdD program unique and how our graduates have used the degree to further their careers.

    CPED Program of the year

    Drexel's EdD program received the Carnegie Project on the Education Doctorate (CPED) Program of the Year Award for 2019, a prestigious distinction that recognizes programs demonstrating excellence, innovation, and impact.

    Archived Webinars

    How long does it take to earn a Doctorate of Education online?

    Drexel operates on the quarter system, which means there are four terms in a calendar year (Winter, Spring, Summer, Fall). The online EdD program requires 60.5-61.5 quarter credits. As working professionals, part-time students typically take three years to earn their degree as part of a cohort. There is also a one-course per term non-cohort plan of study that can be completed in five years.

    Drexel's online EdD is specifically designed for working professionals. The online coursework and no residency requirement means that you can learn on your own schedule.

    What can you do with a Doctorate of Education in Leadership and Management?

    The EdD program is ideal for:

    • K-12 leadership: superintendents, principals, administrators, teachers
    • Higher education administrators
    • Organizers of community programs
    • Leaders in corporations that serve the educational community

    Drexel’s EdD program graduates go on to become leaders and innovators in the areas of instruction, administration, learning, and strategy within many kinds of organizations, including public and private schools, postsecondary institutions, government agencies, non-profit organizations, foundations, and corporations.

    Doctorate of Education Leadership (EdD) Salary Expectations

    Median Salaries for EdD Related Occupations:

    Job Title

    Median Salary*

    Postsecondary Education Administrator




    High School Teacher


    Middle School Teacher


    Elementary School Teacher


    *2016 figures via Bureau of Labor Statistics

    What is the difference between an EdD and a PhD in Education?

    Once you have earned a master’s degree, you have two options for completing a doctoral degree – an EdD or a PhD in Education. Although they are both doctoral programs, they are distinctly different in substance and focus.

    You might consider pursuing an EdD for these reasons:

    • You aspire to work in a hands-on administrative leadership position in educational or corporate environments, government agencies, or nonprofit organizations
    • You want to become a research-informed leader-practitioner, skilled in real-world problem solving, strategic decision making, and organizational transformation

    If you are interested in a faculty position at a higher education institution, a PhD in education would be a great choice. It is far more research-intensive, with an emphasis on creating "new knowledge" in a specific area of study that enhances the profession.

    Additional Program Formats

    State restrictions may apply to some programs.


    This program is organized into four 10-week quarters per year (as opposed to the traditional two semester system) which means you can take more courses in a shorter time period. One semester credit is equivalent to 1.5 quarter credits.

    Core Courses  
    EDUC 800 Educational Leadership & Change 3.0
    EDUC 801 Creative Strategies for Educational Leaders 3.0
    EDUC 804 Program Evaluation in Organizations 3.0
    EDUC 845 Transformative Leadership: Finding One's Source 3.0
    EEDD 888 Educational Leadership for Equity and Social Justice 3.0
    Concentration Course Options (See Below) 15.0-16.0
    Research Courses  
    EDUC 803 Educational Research Design I 3.0
    EDUC 810 Educational Research Design II 3.0
    EDUC 815 Writing for Research, Publication and Funding in Education 3.0
    EDUC 818 Applied Research Study 3.0
    EDUC 835 Quantitative Research Methods and Data Analysis 4.0
    EDUC 836 Qualitative Research Methods and Data Analysis 4.0
    EDUC 837 Advanced Qualitative Methods and Data Analysis 3.0
    EDUC 880 Doctoral Seminar 1.0-1.5
    EdD Candidacy Courses  
    EDUC 997 Doctoral Dissertation 6.0
    Total Credits 60.0-61.5

    Concentration Course Options

    Working closely with your advisor, you'll craft a program concentration most appropriate for your needs and background.

    Creativity and Innovation
    Option A: Creativity and Innovation
    CRTV 501 Foundations in Creativity 3.0
    CRTV 502 Tools and Techniques in Creativity 3.0
    CRTV 503 Creativity in the Workplace 3.0
    CRTV 620 Research Methods and Assessment of Creative and Innovative Thinking 3.0
    CRTV 630 Global Perspectives on Creativity 3.0
    Total Credits 15.0
    Creativity and Innovation
    Option B: Mind, Brain, Learning, & Innovation
    CRTV 615 Neuroscience, Creativity, and Innovation 3.0
    EDHE 620 Mind, Brain, and Learning 3.0
    EDHE 621 Neuropedagogy and Assessment 3.0
    EDHE 622 Neurodiversity in Education and Workforce 3.0
    EHRD 660 Principles of Adult Learning 3.0
    Total Credits 15.0
    Educational Administration
    EDAM 817 Curriculum Models 3.0
    EDAM 820 School Superintendency 3.0
    EDAM 824 Parents and Schools 3.0
    EDEX 712 Instructional & Curriculum Leadership in Special Education 3.0
    Total Credits 15.0
    Educational Administration
    (Pennsylvania Superintendent Certification)
    EDEX 712 Instructional & Curriculum Leadership in Special Education 3.0
    EDAM 817 Curriculum Models 3.0
    EDAM 820 School Superintendency 3.0
    EDAM 824 Parents and Schools 3.0
    EDAM 827 School Superintendent's Internship: Curriculum Models 1.0
    EDAM 828 School Superintendent's Internship: Parents and Schools 1.0
    EDAM 829 School Superintendent's Internship: Budget and Finance 1.0
    EDAM 830 School Superintendent's Internship: Human Resource Development 1.0
    Total Credits 16.0
    Education Policy   
    EDPO 620 Education Policy: Concepts, Issues, and Applications 3.0
    EDPO 624 The Shaping of American Education Policy: Global Forces, Interest Groups, and Politics 3.0
    EDPO 628 American Educational Policy and U.S. Competitiveness 3.0
    EDPO 632 Ethics in Educational Policy Making 3.0
    EDPO 636 Access & Equity in Educational Policy Making 3.0
    Total Credits 15.0
    Global and International Education  
    Select Five:
    EDGI 503 Global, International, & Comparative Education 3.0
    EDGI 506 Comparative Higher Education Systems 3.0
    EDGI 510 Culture, Society, & Education in Comparative Perspective 3.0
    EDGI 518 Analysis of Policy Issues in Global & International Education 3.0
    EDGI 520 Political Economy of Education Reform 3.0
    EDGI 522 Education for Global Citizenship, Sustainability, and Social Justice 3.0
    Total Credits 15.0
    Higher Education Leadership
    Option A: Administration, Leadership, and Assessment
    EDGI 506 Comparative Higher Education Systems 3.0
    EDHE 501 Foundations of Higher Education and Governance 3.0
    EDHE 531 Legal Issues & Ethics in Higher Education 3.0
    EDHE 541 Institutional Assessment, Accreditation, and Effectiveness 3.0
    EDHE 621 Neuropedagogy and Assessment 3.0
    Total Credits 15.0
    Higher Education Leadership
    Option B: Administration, Student Success, and Innovation
    CRTV 615 Neuroscience, Creativity, and Innovation 3.0
    EDHE 506 Comparative Higher Education Systems 3.0
    EDHE 651 Strategic Enrollment Management 3.0
    EDHE 655 Civic Engagement in Higher Education 3.0
    EDHE 665 Student Success: Learning and Innovative Support Services 3.0
    Total Credits 15.0
    Human Resource Development  
    EHRD 500 Foundations of Human Resources Development 3.0
    EHRD 602 Coaching and Mentoring for Sustainable Learning 3.0
    EHRD 611 Organization Development and Change 3.0
    EHRD 612 Strategic Human Resource Development 3.0
    EHRD 660 Principles of Adult Learning 3.0
    Total Credits 15.0
    Learning Technologies   
    EDLT 537 Technologies for Performance Support 3.0
    EDLT 543
    or EDLT 552
    Play & Learning in a Participatory Culture
    or Instructional Design: Project Management
    EDLT 551 Instructional Design Methods 3.0
    EDLT 554 Learning with Social Media and Mobiles 3.0
    ELL 501 The Purpose and Business of E-Learning 3.0
    Total Credits 15.0
    Nursing Education  
    NURS 591 Foundations of Nursing Education 3.0
    NURS 606 Curriculum Design for Higher Level Cognition 3.0
    NURS 613 The Role and Responsibility of the Nurse Educator 3.0
    NURS 615 Assessment, Measurement, and Evaluation 3.0
    NURS 616 Teaching Methods in Nursing Education 3.0
    Total Credits 15.0
    Special Education Leadership
    EDEX 600
    or EDEX 602
    Family, School, and Community Engagement in Special Education
    Special Education Dispute Resolution and Skills Training
    EDEX 710 School Law & Policy in Special Education 3.0
    EDEX 712 Instructional & Curriculum Leadership in Special Education 3.0
    EDEX 714 Development, Supervision, & Support: Special Education Leadership 3.0
    EDEX 716 Organization & Administration of Special Education 3.0
    Total Credits 15.0
    Special Education Leadership
    (Pennsylvania Supervisor of Special Education Certification)
    EDEX 710 School Law & Policy in Special Education 3.0
    EDEX 712 Instructional & Curriculum Leadership in Special Education 3.0
    EDEX 714 Development, Supervision, & Support: Special Education Leadership 3.0
    EDEX 716 Organization & Administration of Special Education 3.0
    Supervisor of Special Education Internship Courses  
    EDEX 721 Supervisor of Special Education Internship: Special Education Leadership 1.0
    EDEX 722 Supervisor of Special Education Internship: Instructional Leadership 1.0
    EDEX 723 Supervisor of Special Education Internship: Collaboration & Personnel 1.0
    EDEX 724 Supervisor of Special Education Internship: Finance & Management 1.0
    Total Credits 16.0
    Sport Leadership  
    CRTV 610 Creativity and Change Leadership 3.0
    SCL 501 Coaching Theory and Principles 3.0
    SCL 503 Pedagogical Strategies in Coaching 3.0
    SCL 504 Coaching Psychology 3.0
    SCL 615 Athletic Recruiting 3.0
    Total Credits 15.0

    View Course Descriptions

    Admissions Criteria

    • Bachelor's degree from a regionally accredited institution
    • Master's degree in Education (or another appropriate field) from a regionally accredited institution
      • Master's GPA of 3.5 or above
    • 3 years of work experience relevant to your professional goals
    • Nursing Education concentration only: Current, unrestricted United States RN license

    Required Documents

    With multiple ways to submit documents, Drexel makes it easy to complete your application. Learn more by visiting our Completing Your Application Guide.

    • A completed application
    • Official transcripts from all universities or colleges and other post-secondary educational institutions attended (including trade schools), verifying completion of your bachelor's and master's degrees
    • Three professional letters of recommendation
    • Resume
    • Nursing Education concentration only: Copy of your United States RN license
    • Additional requirements for International Students

    Writing Requirements

    Personal Essay

    • Discuss your professional goals and aspirations, including how your current skills, along with your study of educational leadership, will support the attainment of these goals. (300 words maximum)

    Problem of Practice

    • In the Drexel EdD program, you'll identify a problem of practice that becomes central to your dissertation research. While the final dissertation topic and document evolve over time, generally, our students arrive with one or more ideas for a problem of practice they have an interest in studying.
    • In this essay, please identify and describe a problem of practice relevant to your current (or a former) professional practice. (750 words maximum)
    • Describe the significance of this problem to the organization.
    • Based on your present understanding of the problem, discuss the potential underlying causes and contributing factors that have created the current challenges.
    • What questions could be explored to learn more about the problem that may help to create potential solutions.

    Writing Sample

    • Provide academic papers from prior coursework or journal articles that cite from peer reviewed articles and demonstrate your academic writing abilities. (5-30 pages)
    • If no prior academic papers are available, please create one on a topic of your choice. (5-8 pages)
    • Alternatively, you may provide a writing sample where you are the solo author—this may be a work-based report that evidences your critical thinking and writing skills.

    Supplemental Documents

    The application process is designed to highlight emerging leaders who can display experience leading teams and groups, strategic planning, and research and development. To make your application more competitive, you're encouraged but not required to submit two or more of the following:

    • A detailed statement discussing your sustained leadership activities
    • A detailed statement discussing your creative activities or products
    • A detailed statement discussing your significant research activities or publications

    Drexel University Employee Applicants

    The EdD program only accepts 5 employees per academic year. Once the application submission cycle is closed, all employee applications will be reviewed and decisions will be made at that time with offers being extended to the top five competitive applications. The Drexel University employee application deadline for Fall 2023 is July 31, 2023.


    The tuition rate for the academic year 2022-2023 is $1396 per credit.

    • The 3-year program is eligible for Financial Aid. The 5-year program is not eligible for Financial Aid.
    • 30% tuition savings available for:
      • Military members serving on active duty or with the National Guard or reserves, veterans, and military dependents
      • Full-time faculty and staff employed at community colleges and their immediate family members
      • Employees and members of Drexel University Online partner organizations and immediate family members
      • Alumni of Drexel University’s School of Education and College of Nursing & Health Professions master’s degree programs
    • When receiving special tuition plans with Drexel University Online, you may not combine them with other tuition benefits that may be available from Drexel University.
    • Students being readmitted to Drexel University must contact applyDUonline@drexel.edu within the first two weeks of the term to request tuition savings for which they qualify.

    Academic Calendar

    2022-2023 Academic Year


    Classes Begin

    Classes End

    Exams Begin

    Exams End

    Fall 2022

    September 19, 2022

    December 3, 2022

    December 5, 2022

    December 10, 2022

    Winter 2023

    January 9, 2023

    March 18, 2023

    March 20, 2023

    March 25, 2023

    Spring 2023

    April 3, 2023

    June 10, 2023

    June 12, 2023

    June 17, 2023

    Summer 2023

    June 26, 2023

    September 2, 2023

    September 4, 2023

    September 9, 2023


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