Top 20 Online Doctor of Education (Ed.D.) Programs

Top 20 Online Doctor of Education (Ed.D.) Programs

The Online Doctor of Education Ed.d Degree is a practice-focused online degree that gives educators the skills to be leaders and administrators in K-12 schools, school districts, colleges, and other educational organizations. In these programs, students study education theory and research. Graduates with this degree have the tools to fix problems that they face in their schools and organizations on a daily basis. Some graduates work as administrators and teachers on the college level, while others have careers as superintendents or other high-level administrators in the public school system.

According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, the Doctor of Education Degree may be quite likely to provide students with a position. The rate of growth for post-secondary education administrators is 15 percent which is 4 percent higher than the average rate for all occupations. A career as a school superintendent may also be available as more than 1,500 schools are looking to hire superintendents and, according to Fortune Magazine, face a lack of qualified applicants.

According to U.S. News and World Report, median salaries range from about $69,000 for post-secondary teachers to about $90,000 for education administrators in elementary and secondary schools.

The criteria for this list are reputation and primarily, degrees that can be earned completely online. Because the Ed.D. is the terminal degree in its field, usually a trip to the campus is necessary in order to defend a dissertation or take a concentrated class. However, these degrees will most effectively accommodate the schedules of educational professionals that are looking to develop in their field by pursuing an online Doctorate in Education.


1. Johns Hopkins University

The Online Doctor of Education Degree is offered by Johns Hopkins University through their School of Education. Johns Hopkins School of Education partners with “school systems, traditional and nontraditional education stakeholders, government agencies and colleagues throughout the Johns Hopkins research community.” The Johns Hopkins School of Education specializes in the needs of PK-12 schools, preparing their students for the following:

  • School Leadership Capacity
  • Helping Children with Special Needs
  • Developing Research-Based Curricula
  • Closing the Achievement Gap
  • Addressing the Social and Emotional Needs of Children, Youth, and Families

Johns Hopkins School of Education also specializes in educating and training counselors and public safety leaders through evidence-based research and instruction. Programs are offered by the School of Education at three locations and online. The online Doctor of Education degree program offers 100% online coursework and only a 3-day residency in the summer once each year. The School of Education at Johns Hopkins University is accredited by the National Council for Accreditation of Teacher Education.


The online Doctor of Education (Ed.D.) degree program at Johns Hopkins University School of Education follows the same goals and mission as the on-campus programs. The goal of the program is “designed to prepare an exceptional corps of educational practitioner-scholars, both nationally and internationally, who can set a high standard for transformational leadership in education” as well as applying evidenced-based practices to their work situations. Because of the great challenges that come along with improving the learning outcomes in private and public educational settings, the Ed.D. program at Johns Hopkins seeks to prepare highly equipped professionals in these fields.

Requirements and Prerequisites:

The requirements for the Ed.D. program at Johns Hopkins include:

  • A minimum of 90 graduate credits
  • At least 48 graduate credits completed at the doctoral level at Johns Hopkins University

In order to enter the program, students must already have obtained:

  • A bachelor’s and master’s degree with a minimum GPA of 3.0 on a 4.0 scale.
  • The master’s degree must be comprised of a minimum of 36 graduate level credits.  These credits will be transferred into the Ed.D. program.

Students who do not have these requirements may be admitted on a conditional basis and must complete the additional graduate-level credits at an accredited college or university.


  • Online Doctoral (Ed.D.) program: $4,100 per course

Time Frame:

Students are expected to finish the Ed.D. program in three years. However, students who need to take longer may take up to five years to complete the coursework for the program. The dissertation must be finished within seven years of entering the degree program. For a complete list of the required coursework components, see here.

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2. Liberty University Online 

Liberty University, located in Virginia, has an online education component called Liberty University Online which boasts around 100,000 students. They claim to be the largest evangelical university in the world. Launched in 2009, its online education component provided adult learning courses and programs through the LU School of Lifelong Learning (LUSLLL). The online school runs simultaneously with the on-campus programs. However, LU Online students take 16-week classes for some of their courses and 8-week sub-terms for the remainder of them. These sub-terms allow the students more flexibility through shorter, overlapping sessions. Liberty University Online caps their class sizes at 25 students which allows for more personal and interactive discussions and teaching. Liberty Online offers a unique format for their doctoral students in that they combine research, application and examination techniques.


Liberty University’s Online Doctor of Education (Ed.D.) degree offers exceptional training for people seeking to work in higher education. The purpose of the degree is to develop leaders who are effective as teachers, superintendents, principals, and college instructors. It also prepares its students for other academic positions requiring leadership skills and decision-making abilities in the educational world. The program is accredited by the National Council for Accreditation of Teacher Education. The program delivery format is 100% online but does require 3 on-campus intensives and an on-campus dissertation defense. The specializations in the Doctor of Education program follow:

Requirements and Prerequisites:


  • Master’s Degree in Education with at least a 3.0 GPA from an institution that is accredited by an agency that is recognized by the U.S. Department of Education.
    • Applicants with a non-educational master’s degree may be required to complete M.Ed. core courses (up to 12 additional hours)
  • A GRE score report with a total verbal and quantitative score of 900

Credits Required:

The credits required to graduate with an Ed.D at LU Online are 60 total hours. Up to 15 of these credit hours can be transferred in from an accredited and un-conferred degree. Up to 24 hours of coursework can be applied from an accredited, conferred Ed.S. degree. A 6 credit hour dissertation is a required part of the Ed.D. program. To download a degree completion plan, see Liberty University’s Ed.D website.

The Ed.D. program at Liberty University Online must be completed in 7 years. However, many students finish their degree in 3-5 years.


  • Doctorate Programs
    • Part-time per hour rate – $650
    • Full time per hour rate – $595

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3. University of Nebraska – Lincoln

The University of Nebraska – Lincoln has been accredited by the North Central Association of Colleges and Schools since the association first started accrediting colleges and universities in 1913. The online program provides online/distance education classes to all 50 states in the U.S. and more than 135 countries worldwide. The University of Nebraska – Lincoln is also a member of the Big Ten Conference which is a group of world-class academic institutions who share “a common mission of research, graduate, professional & undergraduate teaching & public service.” Online courses are taught by the same award-winning professors who teach the on-campus classes. The Ed.D. Program at the University of Nebraska – Lincoln is part of the highly regarded College of Education and Human Sciences.


The Educational Studies: Specialization in Educational Leadership & Higher Education (Ed.D.) Degree at the University of Nebraska – Lincoln is offered fully online. It has been designed to prepare individuals for professional practice and to develop leadership skills necessary to confront the difficult problems that come along with the practice of P-20 education. It also equips its students to work as administrators in higher education, community colleges or other educational institutions. According to the University of Nebraska – Lincoln website, the following interests should inspire one to pursue this program:

  • Leadership in a college, university, or community college
  • Studying various aspects of higher education in a collaborative setting involving other professionals
  • Gaining real-world administrative experiences tied to the major cognate areas of importance to practitioners
  • Seeking an advanced degree to support your goals

The three specializations offered under this degree are:

  1. Educational Leadership
  2. Higher Education Administration
  3. Community College Leadership

The Ed.D. at the University of Nebraska – Lincoln is accredited by the Council of Accreditation of Educator Preparation. The curriculum is focused on helping its students to develop analytical and leadership skills that enable them to meet difficult problems of practice in education.

Requirements and Prerequisites:

Although the Ed.D. program is offered entirely online, all students are encouraged to travel to the campus and summer classes are held in order to facilitate this goal. The requirements of the program are:

  • A minimum of 96 credit hours beyond the bachelor’s degree
  • Master’s degree
  • 12 hours of dissertation
  • 9 hours of research tools
  • 3 credit hours of common doctoral courses
  • 24-36 credit hours of electives

An advisor will work with each student to develop a concentration of elective courses in either educational leadership or higher education. In order to acquire the community college leadership certificate along with the Ed.D. program, an additional 15 credit hours of coursework is required.


  • The tuition for the Ed.D. program at the University of Nebraska – Lincoln is 700 dollars per credit hour.

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4. Ball State University

Ball State University Online is offered through Ball State University’s Teachers College. The Teachers College at Ball State is in the top 25 in the nation for the number of nationally recognized educator preparation programs it offers. It was also one of four universities in Indiana selected by the Woodrow Wilson National Fellowship Foundation to begin a program helping to change the face of teacher education and promote exceptional science and math teacher candidates to seek long-term careers in high-need classrooms. The program has now successfully expanded beyond the borders of Indiana. The graduates of Ball State Teachers College have a nearly 100 percent pass rate on the Praxis exams which are required for initial teacher licensure in Indiana. All Teachers College education programs are fully accredited by the Council for the Accreditation of Educator Preparation (CAEP), the Higher Learning Commission, and the Indiana Professional Standards Board. Additionally, the graduate education programs were ranked 16th in U.S. News & World Report’s 2017 “Best Online Programs.” Significantly for those interested in the education program at Ball State University, the Indiana Academy for Science, Mathematics, and Humanities, located on the campus of Ball State, was ranked No. 3 on Niche’s “Best Public High Schools in America.”


Ball State Online offers a Doctorate of Education (EdD) in Adult, Higher, and Community Education. This degree offers 3 different specializations:

Other unique advantages of the program, listed on the Ball State website are:

  • A low student to faculty ratio which assures personal attention and valuable mentoring
  • Classes that can be taken in a variety of sequences
  • Several electives allow students to customize the program to their needs

Requirements and Prerequisites:

The requirements of the program are:

  • 12 credit hours in the core courses
  • 21 credit hours in research courses
  • 24 credit hours in one of the three major concentrations
  • either a single cognate of 24 credit hours or two cognates of 15 credit hours each
  • 10 credit hours for dissertation

Applicants to the Ed.D. program at Ball State must:

  • Hold an earned baccalaureate or equivalent degree with a GPA of at least 3.0 from a college or university accredited by its regional accrediting association
  • Hold an earned master’s degree or equivalent with a GPA of at least 3.2
  • Achieve acceptable scores on the GRE


  • In state residents cost per credit hour – $394
  • Out of state residents cost per credit hour – $590

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5. University of the Cumberlands

The University of the Cumberlands, in Williamsburg, Kentucky is a small, Christian liberal arts college that has been providing education for students in Kentucky for over 125 years. The approach of the University of the Cumberlands is to provide small class sizes and personal attention throughout the education of their students. This approach applies to both their on campus and online programs. Eighty percent of the faculty at the University of the Cumberlands have earned the highest degree in their field, helping their students to think critically and creatively in order to achieve lives of responsible service and leadership. The University of the Cumberlands is accredited by the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges to award associate, baccalaureate, masters, education specialist and doctorate degrees.

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The Doctorate of Education in Educational Leadership (Ed.D) Program is designed for those who are looking to lead educational institutions with specialized skills and knowledge. The program is made to accommodate working professionals and focuses on addressing the educational issues that arise in today’s schools. The Ed.D. Program at the University of the Cumberlands develops “advanced practitioner skills” grounded in established research methodologies. The program can be completed 100% online with optional on-campus classes available which generally meet on Saturdays. “The program empowers graduates to apply the critical and creative thinking skills necessary to meet the complex demands placed on organizations dedicated to education and development.”

Requirements and Prerequisites:

Students who apply for the Ed.D. program at the University of the Cumberlands must:

  • Hold a master’s degree from an accredited college
  • Have a 3.5 GPA on all graduate work
  • Have earned at least 300 on the GRE or a score of at least 400 on the Miller Analogies Test

The Ed.D program at the University of the Cumberlands can be completed in less than three years and is a 60 credit hour program.


The current tuition for the Ed.D. program at the University of the Cumberlands is:

  • $375 per credit hour
  • $50 technology fee per term (there are 6 eight-week terms per year; 2 in the spring, 2 in the fall and 2 in the summer)

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6. Northcentral University

Northcentral University is an online, for-profit university which was established in 1996. The corporate headquarters is based in San Diego, California. The unique strategy of Northcentral University is their one-to-one learning model instruction for each of their online students. Every student is paired with one faculty member causes a deeper understanding of the material and a relationship of mutual respect to be formed between the professor and the student. The mission of the School of Education at Northcentral University is:

“to prepare professional educators at all levels to become effective leaders, reflective practitioners, and successful communicators within the diverse field of education. The School of Education’s mission is centered on improving teaching, learning, research and leadership contributions throughout all levels of human development and education.”

In 2003, Northcentral University was accredited by the Higher Learning Commission (HLC) of the North Central Association of Colleges and Schools. In 2015, Northcentral was accredited by WASC Senior College and University Commission (WSCUC).


According to Northcentral University School of Education Dean, Dr. Rebecca Wardlow, “NCU’s Doctor of Education is an applied doctoral degree that emphasizes the application of theoretical knowledge to advance practice in the field of education. For this reason, the online Ed.D. degree program at Northcentral University is a great option for education professionals who already have leadership responsibilities in various areas of education, including colleges, PK-12 schools, proprietary organizations, private and public businesses, or the military.”

The Ed.D. program at Northcentral University has 16 professionally relevant specializations and is offered 100% online with starting dates every week.

Requirements and Prerequisites:

The following time and credit hours are required in order to complete the program:

  • Total Credit Hours: 60
  • Courses: 20
  • Recommended Completion Time: 40 Months

To enter the Ed.D. program at Northcentral University, no GRE is required.


The total tuition and fees to complete the entire Ed.D. program at Northcentral University are currently $50,958.

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7. Sam Houston State University

Sam Houston State University, was founded in 1879 and is the third oldest public institution of higher learning in the State of Texas. Its physical location is 50 minutes outside of Houston and is one of the oldest purpose-built institutions in Texas and west of the Mississippi River. The school is named for Sam Houston, “Texas’ greatest hero”, who was buried in the university city. Now, with over 20 bachelor’s and graduate degrees available entirely online, SHSU Online is carrying the original legacy of the campus to the rest of the world. Sam Houston offers two Ed.D. programs completely online:


Doctorate of Education in Instructional Technology:

  • Ranked one of the Best Online Programs for Grad Education by U.S. News & World Report, the Ed.D. in Instructional Technology at Sam Houston is a fully online professional practice doctoral program which prepares individuals to integrate technology into the curriculum. This doctoral program enables people to be leaders in the field of instructional technology who will meaningfully integrate technology into education. The Ed.D. in Instructional Technology consists of a collaborative curriculum between the Department of Curriculum and Instruction and the Computer Science Department.

Doctorate of Education in Developmental Education Administration:

  • The Ed.D. in Developmental Education Administration is a fully online interdisciplinary doctoral program designed to prepare educators to develop and administer programs for underprepared community college and university students in math, reading, and/or writing.

Requirements and Prerequisites:

Both Ed.D. programs require:

  • A bachelor’s and master’s degree from an accredited institution
  • Graduate GPA of 3.5 or higher

The Ed.D. in Instructional Technology requires:

  • Master’s Degree in Instructional Technology or a similar degree
  • Minimum of three years of teaching, direct services, administrative experience with technology, instructional design either in school, administrative, or business/industry.

Each of the Ed.D. programs is a 60 credit hour program which can be completed in approximately 3.5 years.


The current cost of one semester of online graduate education at Sam Houston State University, including the distance learning fee, is 5,418.00.

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8. University of West Georgia

The University of West Georgia is a doctoral-granting university in Carrollton, Georgia. The University rests on around 1,000 acres 45 miles outside of Atlanta. Off-campus classes are available in Dalton, Newnan, Georgia Highlands College in Rome and several other community locations throughout the state. Founded in 1906, as an agricultural and mechanical school, UWG grew from a two-year institution to a four-year college in 1957. The school achieved university status in 1996. Now, with over 13,000 students and a continuously developing online program, the University of West Georgia is accredited by the Commission on Colleges of the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools. It is classified as a SACS Level VI University, the highest level possible. The Carnegie Classification of Institutions of Higher Education awarded UWG the classification of Doctoral Research University R3, making it one of only 7 Georgia institutions of higher learning that qualifies as a doctoral university. The University of West Georgia, over the last ten years, has been repeatedly named as one of the Best Southeastern Colleges by The Princeton Review.


The University of West Georgia offers a Doctor of Education (Ed.D.) with a Major in School Improvement. The degree is offered 100% online. The online Ed.D. program in School Improvement “offers a unique opportunity for educators looking for an interdisciplinary, inquiry-based doctoral program that prepares graduates to become the next generation of change agents.” Two unique aspects of the Ed.D. program at the University of West Georgia according to its website are:

  • The program provides for students to develop a specialized “Area of Concentration.” The currently available areas of concentration are:
    • School Counseling
    • Educational Leadership
    • K-12 Online Learning
    • Instructional Technology
    • Reading
    • Media Specialist
    • Special Education
  • Students work on their dissertations simultaneously with their coursework which means that students can complete their dissertation by the end of their coursework.

The program is accredited by the Council for the Accreditation of Educator Preparation (CAEP).

Requirements and Prerequisites:

  • Applicants for the Ed.D. program at the University of West Georgia must have completed a master’s degree at a regionally or nationally accredited university.
  • The time required to complete the program is 3 years.
  • The program requires 60 credit hours.


  • The total tuition for the Ed.D. program at UWG is $4,088. This amount is for 12 credit hours including all fees.

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9. Trevecca Nazarene University

Trevecca Nazarene University is a private, liberal arts university located in Nashville, Tennessee.  The school was founded in 1901 out of an effort by Rev. McClurkan, a Presbyterian minister, to teach a small group of parishioners who wanted to be more effective Christian workers. In the same year, McClurkan announced the establishment of the Literary and Bible Training School for Christian Workers. It has gradually grown to over 3,000 students on a 90-acre campus and also an online school. The purpose of Trevecca is “that its graduates be socially-conscious, globally-aware, and actively-engaged individuals who are developing holistically in the cognitive, emotional, physical, social, and spiritual areas of being.” Trevecca Nazarene University is accredited by the Commission on Colleges of the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools to award associate, baccalaureate, masters and doctoral degrees. The Teacher Education Unit of Trevecca is accredited at the national level by the National Council for Accreditation of Teacher Education (NCATE).


Trevecca University’s Doctor of Education (Ed.D.) in Leadership and Professional Practice is designed for aspiring leaders who wish to advance their careers by gaining skills and expertise in exceptional leadership. The program appeals to professionals across various fields including:

  • Business
  • Health care
  • Non-profit organizations
  • Ministry
  • Education

Trevecca’s Ed.D. program takes a research-based, theory into practice approach to its standardized curriculum. The topics covered include:

  • Leadership (self, team, and organizations)
  • Research (applied research and statistics)
  • Professional Practice (transformational change; cultural influences; strategic policy and planning; professional practice; theories, systems and structures; and technology)

This program is a non-licensure doctoral program and allows the student to complete their dissertation at the same time as the rest of their coursework.

Requirements and Prerequisites:

Admission requirements include:

  • A completed master’s degree from an accredited institution
  • A 3.4 cumulative GPA for all prior graduate coursework

The doctorate extends for 27 months with the dissertation being completed in tandem with the coursework of the program. The applied research dissertation will address the following modes of action:

  • Identify a need within the workplace
  • Formulate a plan of action to address the need
  • Implement the plan of action
  • Evaluate the results of the action plan using both qualitative and quantitative data


The tuition for the Ed.D. at Trevecca Nazarene University is a $699/credit hour. This includes 57 credit hours. Over 27 months this makes the total tuition of the program$39,843.

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10. Creighton University

Creighton University is a private, Jesuit university in Omaha, Nebraska. Founded by the Society of Jesus in 1878, Creighton is Nebraska’s largest private religious university. Creighton is one of 28 Jesuit colleges and universities in the U.S. As members of the Society of Jesus, there are over 17,000 Jesuits still serving around the world who continue the Ignatian tradition by advancing education. The Society of Jesus-the world’s largest Catholic religious order of priests and brothers was founded in the mid-1500s by St. Ignatius of Loyola. Creighton has over 8,000 undergraduate, graduate and professional students who come to Creighton each year “to find their place in the world through lives of leadership and service.” Creighton University is ranked #1 in the category of Regional Universities Midwest by U.S. News and World Report.


Creighton University offers a fully online Doctorate of Education (Ed.D.) in Leadership. However, two required residencies take place on the Creighton University campus. The points of focus of the Ed.D. in Leadership at Creighton include:

  • Leadership
    • the program concentrates on cultivating leadership skills in an academic setting with some of the most respected leadership experts in the country. These experts combine the real-world application with a format that is interdisciplinary, self-reflective and values-based.
  • Interdisciplinary
    • Creighton’s faculty members that teach in the online Ed.D. program come from the arts and sciences, business, education and health and law. This broad perspective gives students applicable skills in a range of industries, especially business, education, nonprofit, military and health care.

To see a full list of possible career options that can result from the leadership skills acquired from this degree see the Leadership Doctorate Career Outlook page at Creighton University’s website.

Requirements and Prerequisites:

  • Students applying to the Ed.D. program at Creighton should have a master’s or equivalent professional degree from a regionally accredited institution.
  • Students that take one course per session take 3 1/2 years to finish the program. Each session is 8 weeks in duration.
  • There are two required residencies on Creighton University’s campus. The first serves as a four-day orientation where students meet classmates and faculty. The second concludes the program with the dissertation defense.
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The current tuition for the Ed.D. in Leadership at Creighton University is $820 per credit hour.

Applicants currently working full-time in K-12 Catholic school education may be eligible to apply for the Presidential Scholarship for Catholic Educational Leadership.

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11. Boise State University

Boise State University was founded in Boise, Idaho, in 1932 by the Episcopal Church. It became an independent junior college in 1934 and has been awarding baccalaureate and master’s degrees since 1965. Boise State offers 201 degrees in 190 fields of study and has more than 100 graduate programs. The school became Idaho’s third state university in 1974.  As of 2010, the university has over 75,000 alumni. The Graduate College at Boise State awards over 900 graduate degrees and certificates each year. “Programs span the breadth of graduate education, from certificate and master’s programs that prepare students for leadership roles in a wide variety of professional settings, to research-focused doctoral programs that develop the next generation of scholars.” Boise State is accredited by the Northwest Commission on Colleges and Universities.


The Doctorate of Education in Educational Technology at Boise State University is part of Boise State’s College of Education. The College of Education at Boise State is ranked by 2017 U.S. News and World Report as one of the Best Education Schools in the Northwest and Intermountain West and is supported by accomplished faculty and staff, research centers, and institutes. Students who pursue the Ed.D in Educational Technology program explore the use of current and emerging technologies for effective and efficient teaching in a dynamic global society. Areas of particular focus include:

  • online teaching and learning
  • technology integration
  • academic technology leadership
  • innovative teaching in K-12 and higher education
  • educational software development for the web and mobile platforms
  • educational games and simulations

People who pursue this degree are highly motivated by two things:

  • applying research to the practice of teaching and learning
  • a driving desire to lead and innovate in this ever-changing field.

The Ed.D. in Educational Technology program at Boise State can be completed entirely online. There are no on-campus or in-person requirements. All courses and exams/defenses can be completed at a distance, though in some cases synchronous attendance is required.

Requirements and Prerequisites:

  • It is expected that students who are enrolled part-time will complete the program in 4-5 years.
  • 66 total credits (including the dissertation) are required in order to complete the program
  • A recent GRE score is required for the application


The current cost of the Ed.D. in Educational Technology at Boise State, per 3 credit hour course, is $1,428.

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12. Texas A&M University-Commerce

Texas A&M University-Commerce is a public research university located outside of the Dallas-Fort Worth metropolitan. The university is the third largest institution in the Texas A&M University System. Founded in 1889, it is the fourth oldest state university or college in Texas. Texas A&M Commerce offers more than 100 graduate and undergraduate degrees with graduate education entering the curriculum in 1935. The first doctoral program was instituted in 1962. The College of Education and Human Services is one of the most well-known colleges within the University and has produced numerous successful and notable teachers and school administrators. Texas A&M Commerce has agreements with many school districts in the DFW area and Northeast Texas to send their undergraduates to student-teach and has a notable graduate school for those seeking an advanced degree in teaching and education. In 2013, The College of Education and Human Services at Texas A&M-Commerce was ranked #1 in the State of Texas for Teaching Education among all Universities, public and private, and 13th in the nation by the Directory of U.S. Colleges Database Online Magazine.


The Department of Educational Leadership offers the Doctor of Education degree in Educational Administration fully online. The degree is designed for a K-12 public school administration emphasis. Graduates of the doctoral program often pursue leadership positions in schools, districts, and state agencies. The coursework for the program includes:

  • preparation in foundations of educational administration
  • governance of educational organizations
  • advanced organizational behavior
  • research methods
  • administration of instructional programs
  • program evaluation for school leaders
  • ethics and philosophy
  • economics of education
  • dynamics of change.

Doctoral students also participate in a residency that promotes continuous study in the field of scholarship and regular interaction between the student and faculty members. Students may also choose to apply to take school superintendent certification courses while pursuing a doctoral degree.

Requirements and Prerequisites:

  • Doctoral program applicants have generally completed a master’s degree in educational administration and principal certification coursework
  • Applicants are encouraged to have a strong achievement record in academics and scholarship ability, leadership abilities and commitment to education
  • Candidates must provide a copy of their State Principle Certificate or have 18 hours of successfully completed Educational Administration coursework
  • GRE Scores are required for all applicants
  • A 3.40 GPA is required on previous graduate work


  • The tuition and fees for the Ed.D. in Educational Administration at Texas A&M University-Commerce is $2,980 per semester. This includes all fees and assumes a 9 credit hour semester.

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13. Kennesaw State University

Kennesaw State University is the third-largest university in Georgia with more than 33,000 undergraduate and graduate students representing 142 countries. It is one of the top fifty largest universities in the United States. Kennesaw State University is a public, research university located in Kennesaw, Georgia, 20 miles outside of Atlanta. Accredited by the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools (SACS), KSU offers over 70 online degree, certification, and endorsement programs and over 500 online courses. Kennesaw State University’s national reputation has grown and is recognized by U.S. News & World Report’s America’s Best Colleges issue in 2010 as one of the top universities in the region. KSU’s first-year experience program has also been named an “Academic Program to Look For” by U.S. News for nine consecutive years.


There are two online Doctor of Education (Ed.D.) programs offered through Kennesaw State University’s Bagwell College of Education.

  • The Doctor of Education in Instructional Technology
    • The Doctor of Education in Instructional Technology is designed for educators who currently hold or aspire to hold a technology leadership position at the school, district or state level. The Ed.D. is intended to enhance the educational technology leadership knowledge and skills of the students. The program is based on the ISTE Standards for Technology Directors of the CoSN Framework of Essential Skills for K-12 CTO.
  • The Doctor of Education in Teacher Leadership
    • The Doctor of Education in Teacher Leadership prepares candidates for a variety of career choices. The goal of the program is to give its students the tools to develop as leaders in their schools and school systems. The Ed.D. provides degree candidates with nine credit hours of pure leadership coursework.

Requirements and Prerequisites:

  • Doctor of Education in Instructional Technology
    • requires 66 credit hours
  • Doctor of Education in Teacher Leadership
    • includes a minimum of 45 hours of study in four areas:
      • Certification in Teacher Leadership
      • Advanced Teacher Leadership
      • Research
      • Dissertation
    • requires a six-month residency in which the teacher leader candidate works with the Candidate Support Team to develop:
      • An Individual Growth Plan
      • A Residency Project Proposal

Doctorate of Education degrees at Kennesaw State University typically require:

  • An earned master’s degree in education or closely related field
  • A clear-renewable professional certificate
  • At least 3 years of professional teaching or administrating
  • A competitive GRE score and GPA


  • The current tuition for the Ed.D. at Kennesaw State University is $613 per credit hour. This includes all tuition and student fees.

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13. University of South Carolina

The University of South Carolina also referred to as USC, is a public research university located in Columbia, South Carolina. USC is categorized by the Carnegie Foundation for the Advancement of Teaching as having “highest research activity.” It has been ranked as an “up-and-coming” university by U.S. News & World Report. Founded in 1801, the University of South Carolina “flourished pre-Civil War, overcame postwar struggles, was rechartered in 1906 as a university and transformed itself as a national institution in the 20th and 21st centuries.” USC now offers more than 350 programs of study, leading to bachelor’s, masters and doctoral degrees from fourteen colleges and schools. The enrollment is around 50,000 students.


The University of South Carolina offers two online Doctor of Education (Ed.D.) programs.

  • Doctor of Education in Curriculum & Instruction – Educational Technology Concentration Online
    • Designed for professional educators in K-12 and higher education institutions
    • Prepares leaders for the challenges of technology-based learning, instruction, and training with a practical, project-based emphasis on design, development, implementation, evaluation, and research
    • Initial on-campus orientation with each cohort in order to build community
    • Faculty with a rich history of teaching online & researching technology-based learning online and in classrooms
    • A project-based approach to courses
    • Sound principles and techniques of instructional systems design plus technological competence development
  • Doctor of Education in Curriculum & Instruction – Curriculum Studies Concentration Online
    • Also designed for professional educators who also want to excel as curriculum specialists in PK-12, higher education institutions or in the private sector.
    • Prepares leaders for the challenges of curricular administration including culture and leadership, ethics and morals, and curriculum design and implementation
    • Perspective on contemporary, historical, and critical curriculum issues
    • Diverse curriculum from one of the premier research educational institutions in the country
    • Preparation for educational leadership roles including university professorships, district-level curriculum administration, and school-level instructional positions

Requirements and Prerequisites:

  • Program requirements for both of the Doctor of Education Curriculum & Instruction degrees at USC include 60 credit hours of class and dissertation credits.
  • The complete coursework estimated completion time for both degrees is 36 months.
  • Both degrees require a master’s degree from an accredited institution.
  • Both degrees require a GRE score from within the last 5 years.


  • $29,950 in-state
  • $33,145 out-of-state

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14. University of Florida

The University of Florida was founded in 1853 and has been functioning continuously in Gainesville, Florida on its current campus since September 1906. The school is consistently ranked as one of the best value universities in the country: No. 2 in Kiplinger’s “Best College Values” (2016, No. 3 in Forbes’ “Top 50 Best Value Colleges” (2016), No. 15 in MONEY’s “Best Colleges” (2016), No. 6 in Washington Monthly’s “Best Bang for the Buck – Southeast” (2016, No. 3 in the Fiske Guide to Colleges’ Public Best Buys (2015), and on Princeton Review’s list of “Top 50 Colleges that Pay You Back” (2016). The University of Florida is accredited by the Southern Association of Colleges and School Commission on Colleges (SACSCOC). The University of Florida has sixteen academic colleges and more than 150 research centers and institutes. It offers multiple graduate professional programs on one contiguous campus and administers 123 master’s degree programs and seventy-six doctoral degree programs in eighty-seven schools and departments.


There is two online Doctor of Education programs at the University of Florida:

The Ed.D. in Curriculum & Instruction with a specialization in Curriculum, Teaching, and Teacher Education (CTTE) is made specifically for the practicing educator. Working together within a community of practice, students will tackle their school’s problems while learning through theory and research to inform their teaching. The focus of the program is positive, practical changes. Students in the program focus on 3 core areas of expertise:

  • Theoretical
  • Pedagogical
  • Research

The Doctorate in Education (Ed. D.) in Curriculum and Instruction with an emphasis on Educational Technology at the University of Florida is designed for those aiming to be researching professionals. Professionals who conduct research related to educational technology in educational environments.

Requirements and Prerequisites:

Ed.D. in Curriculum and Instruction with a specialization in Curriculum, Teaching and Teacher Education:

  • Online sessions are either eight or sixteen weeks in length
  • Required week-long on-campus experiences every summer during the first 3 summers.
  • On campus qualifying exams (one day) and dissertation defense (one day).
  • The standard time to completion is 4 years

For admission into the online Ed.D. program with a specialization in Curriculum, Teaching and Teacher Education, applicants must:

  • Have a minimum GPA of 3.0 for all upper-division undergraduate work and previous graduate work
  • Have an acceptable score on the GRE
  • Have a Masters or Specialist degree in education
  • Have a minimum of 3 years of practical experience in the field of education
  • Have a current role as a full-time practicing educator

Ed.D. in Curriculum and Instruction with an emphasis on Educational Technology:

  • Ed.D. is offered online with three required campus-based summer experiences
  • Two years of required online coursework, followed by qualifying exams at the end of the second year
  • Dissertation under the guidance of the full-time faculty
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For admission into the Ed.D. with an emphasis on Educational Technology, a completed master’s degree from an accredited institution is required.


The online graduate tuition for Florida residents per credit hour is:

  • $448.73

For non-Florida residents:

  • $690.21

For More Information

15. Lamar University

Lamar University was founded in 1923 and became the first college in Texas to receive Texas Department of Education approval during the first year of operation. By 1925, Lamar became fully accredited. Now, home to 15,000 students, Lamar University is among the fastest growing Texas colleges and universities. Located near Houston in Beaumont, TX, Lamar is a member of the Texas State University System. Lamar University offers more than 100 programs of study leading to bachelor’s, masters and doctoral degrees. The school has been nationally recognized for the quality of its core curriculum and the diversity of its student body. Lamar is accredited by the Commission on Colleges of the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools.


Lamar University offers an online Doctoral of Education Degree (Ed.D.) in Educational Leadership through its College of Education and Human Development. Lamar’s doctoral program in education provides a quality educational experience and is designed to meet the needs of full-time working professionals through a 100% online delivery method. Students are never required to be online. Online courses are delivered in five-week increments with a week off between each class. The program is designed to be completed in eight semesters, including summers.

Requirements and Prerequisites:

To apply for the Ed.D. in Educational Leadership at Lamar University students must have:

  • GRE Scores
  • Completed a master’s degree in a related field from an accredited college or university
  • Minimum 3.5 GPA
  • Other leadership experience
  • Current leadership position

The requirements to graduate with the Ed.D. include:

  • 60 credit hours
  • An average of 3 years to completion time
  • All coursework must be completed within a 10-year time frame


Resident (12+ hours):

  • $5218

Non-Resident (12+ hours):

  • $10,114

An average of 1,000.00 is granted to students as institutional financial support.

For More Information


16. University of Arkansas – Fayetteville

University of Arkansas – Fayetteville is located in Fayetteville, Arkansas and is a public research university. Founded in 1871, when the state legislature approved a land-grant for the university, the school was first known as Arkansas Industrial University. Now, more than 140 years later the University of Arkansas has over 26,000 students and over 188 undergraduate, graduate, and professional programs. The university serves as the major provider of graduate-level instruction in Arkansas and its public service activities affect every county in Arkansas. It is classified by the Carnegie Foundation as a research university with the highest research activity.


The Doctorate in Education (Ed.D.) degree in Educational Leadership provides professional preparation for students pursuing careers as principals, administrators and supervisors in public and private schools; superintendents and other central office personnel; federal and state governmental agency officials; and other education leadership related professionals. The coursework can be finished completely online but requires three intensive weekend seminars on campus. The program consists of:

  • An extensive network of K-16 partners throughout the state
  • A faculty committed to providing a highly rigorous and relevant classroom experience
  • Researchers that bridge theory and practice to respond to the needs of policymakers and practitioners in the field
  • Students who are passionate about transforming schools and improving the lives of children

The Ed.D. in Educational Leadership at the University of Arkansas – Fayetteville is accredited by the Council for the Accreditation of Educator Preparation.

The mission of the College of Education at the University of Arkansas is:

“To graduate educational leaders with the knowledge, skills, ethics, and motivation to transform educational organizations; to facilitate student success, and to respond affirmatively to the increasing expectations of customers in a technological society and a global environment.”

Requirements and Prerequisites:

  • 42 credit hours
  • Dissertation required
  • GRE required
  • Can be completed in 3 years

In order to be accepted to the Ed.D. in Educational Leadership at the University of Arkansas, students must have an E.D. degree or equivalent and a valid teaching license.


The tuition for the Ed.D. in Educational Leadership at the University of Arkansas is $404.92 a credit hour.

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17. Central Michigan University

Central Michigan University is one of the nation’s 100 largest public universities with more than 20,000 students on its Mount Pleasant, Michigan campus and another 7,000 online and at more than 40 locations across America. Central Michigan was established in 1892 as the Central Michigan Normal School and Business Institute, with classes in teaching, business, and stenography. Its focus at that time was to train teachers since few of the state’s teachers received any formal training in teaching. In 1971, Central Michigan entered into training beyond the master’s degree level with its Specialist in Education degree which now includes specialist degrees in several disciplines and eight doctoral degrees. CMU’s Global Campus continued to grow also, allowing the university to offer its first online courses in 1994. Now, over 125 years later, Central Michigan University now offers more than 200 academic programs at the undergraduate, master’s specialist and doctoral levels and has combined the online and educational focus of its history to offer the online Doctor of Education in Educational Leadership.


The Doctorate of Education in Educational Leadership at Central Michigan University prepares students for success at the highest levels of administration with emphases in K-12 or Higher Education. In the program, students develop in-depth knowledge and skills to transform educational institutions through theory and practice. The program is offered:

  • In hybrid cohorts, meaning students follow a set schedule of courses with the same group of students from start to finish
  • Predominantly online with four face-to-face summer meetings per cohort with location and dates provided a year in advance
  • With asynchronous and synchronous online components, designed to build a sense of community and form professional networks.
    • Sessions utilize audio and video technology to simulate an actual classroom experience permitting immediate feedback, detailed collaboration with instructors and fellow students

Accomplish career goals through enhanced knowledge and skills in advanced research and analysis, ethical leadership, organizational culture and change, organizational theory. Promote these skills working as a:

  • principal
  • superintendent
  • curricular leader

This emphasis qualifies students to take the Praxis SSA and earn their Michigan Central Office Certificate through EDL 880 Doctoral Internship.

The Ed.D. in Educational Leadership, within the College of Education and Human Services, at Michigan State University is accredited through the Teacher Education Accreditation Council.

Requirements and Prerequisites:

  • 63 required credits including field-based research and dissertation credits

In order to be accepted into the Ed.D. program at Michigan State University students must:

  • Have a master’s degree from an accredited institution
  • Have a 3.5 minimum GPA
  • Have completed 3 years of professional education experience
  • Have a recent GRE score


  • The current tuition for the Ed.D. program at Michigan State University is $627 per credit.

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18. Utah State University

Utah State University is a public doctorate-granting university in Logan, Utah. It is the largest public residential campus in Utah with around 30,000 students 735 of which are doctoral students. Utah State University was founded in 1888 and now has nine colleges offering a total of 176 bachelor’s degrees, 97 master’s degrees and 38 doctoral degrees. Utah State has produced 7 Rhodes Scholars, 1 Nobel Prize winner, 1 MacArthur Fellows program inductee, 4 recipients of the Harry St. Truman Scholarship and 34 recipients of the Barry M. Goldwater Scholarship. A professor from the university has been named Utah’s sole Carnegie Professor of the year 14 of the last 20 years. Utah State has 31 regional campuses throughout Utah and operates more than 20 distance education centers. The research university is accredited by the Northwest Commission on Colleges and Universities.


The online Doctorate of Education at Utah State is provided through the  Emma Eccles Jones College of Education and Human Services. The School of Teacher and Education and Leadership housed by the College ranks in the top 2% of all graduate colleges of education. The college was also ranked third in the nation in total research dollars received, according to “America’s Best Graduate Schools” by U.S. News & World Report. The School of Teacher Education and Leadership administers an interdepartmental program leading to a doctoral degree in education with a required specialization in curriculum and instruction. The degree is designed for educators who wish to prepare to become:

  • curriculum specialists, coordinators, or supervisors in public or private school systems or state departments of public instruction
  • faculty members at the college or university level, generally in a teacher preparation area

The Ed.D. program prepares candidates to serve as curriculum and instruction leaders in public or private educational institutions and to teach in education and education-related programs in colleges and universities. These degrees are also the only distance-delivered doctoral degrees in the state.

Students must choose an area in which to focus their research. These areas are:

  • Instructional Leadership
  • Mathematics Education and Leadership
  • Literacy Education and Leadership
  • Career and Technical Education

Prerequisites and Requirements:

Applicants must have:

  • A master’s degree
  • Two years of teaching experience
  • Applicants with master’s degrees in fields other than education-related fields require teaching experience
  • Score at or above the 40th percentile on the GRE
  • GPA of 3.0 or higher during the most recent 60 semester hours

To complete a doctorate degree requirements are:

  • A minimum of 60 total credits for students with a master’s degree and a minimum of 90 total credits for students without a master’s degree
  • A completed “Unifying Curriculum and Instruction Program of Studies Core (12-15 semester credits) and a Research and Statistics Core (12-semester credits)
  • A completed planned program of supporting electives
  • A written comprehensive examination with a passing grade which advances the student to candidacy
  • A complete and satisfactorily defended doctoral research study
  • All final requirements


  • Tuition for a semester of graduate education at Utah State University is $2,490.89.

For More Information


20. University of Northern Colorado

The University of Northern Colorado is a public graduate research university with around 12,000 students and six colleges. The university was founded in the late 1880s when citizens of Greeley petitioned the Colorado government to create a school to educate teachers in their community. At that time, Governor Cooper signed a bill establishing the Colorado State Normal School and Greeley’s citizens raised the money for the first building. Recently celebrating its 125th birthday, the University of Northern Colorado now has 106 undergraduate programs, 120 graduate programs and has expanded its online programs to meet the growing educational needs of the broader population of the U.S.


The Doctorate of Education (Ed.D.)  in Educational Leadership is offered through the College of Education and Behavioral Sciences. The College was awarded the prestigious Christa McAuliffe Award for Exemplary Programs in Teacher Education. The award demonstrates the commitment of Northern Colorado University to their state-mandated mission to prepare education professionals and offer high-quality undergraduate and graduate programs.

The Educational Doctorate in Educational Leadership prepares educators to assume a variety of roles, including district leadership, research, advocacy, or teaching in higher education. Critical reading, analysis of data, and original research are emphasized in addition to content courses in individualized areas of concentration. The principal licensure, administrator licensure, and research concentrations allow students to design their program to best fit their career goals and interests. The program is delivered face-to-face over six Saturdays each semester. Face-to-face courses are supplemented with online components, as well as three courses which are delivered entirely online. Students meet with fellow leaders in their area in order to still fit the program around their work and family life.

Requirements and Prerequisites:

Applicants require:

  • A minimum GRE score of 140 Quantitative, 146 Verbal Reasoning, Combined score of at least 297 with analytic writing minimum of 3.5
  • A previous master’s degree or EdS from an accredited college or university with a 3.0-grade point average on the most recent degree
  • Documented ability in completed, published research
  • SRM 600 Introduction to Graduate Research (3) or equivalent

Coursework will take 2-2 1/2 years and is delivered primarily in a face-to-face format over six Saturdays each semester. Face-to-face courses are supplemented with online components, as well as three courses which are delivered entirely online. Dissertation proposal and research will take place after the completion of required coursework.


The 2016-17 program tuition is $605 per credit hour.

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