Educational Studies - Postsecondary Leadership/Community College Leadership


Educational Studies - Postsecondary Leadership/Community College LeadershipDoctor of Education (Ed.D.)

Program Length

3-4 years


Credits

96


Format

Hybrid


GRE/Entrance Exam

Not Required

Application Process

Preparing Professional's for Challenging and Rewarding Careers in Higher Education

The Doctoral Specialization in Postsecondary Leadership or Community College Leadership provides academic preparation and professional development for those individuals interested in the study of educational leadership and higher education.

Specializations

This program allows students to choose from two different areas to focus. Below are the two specializations which are available. 

Postsecondary Leadership
The Ed. D. in Educational Studies with a specialization in Postsecondary Leadership allows students who are currently employed at a college or university the ability to advance their knowledge in the field so that they can be more marketable when advancing in their career.

Community College Leadership
The Ed. D. in Educational Studies with a specialization in Community College Leadership allows students who are currently employed at a community college the ability to advance their knowledge in the field so that they can be more marketable when advancing in their career.

The program is described as an online program; however, all students are encouraged or required to travel to campus. The Ed.D. requires students to complete a minimum of 6 credit hours of on-campus research residency seminars. Normally, all doctoral students will be on campus to present the dissertation proposal and for the final defense of the dissertation study.

Courses are offered on the regular semester and summer session schedule of the University of Nebraska-Lincoln. Research residency seminars are offered during the summer in a hybrid fashion (time-intensive on-campus experiences followed by additional online content) to facilitate the on-campus residency requirement. Courses are announced in the UNL schedule available online and students register for courses using the University web-based enrollment and billing system.

New applicants should be aware that not all advisors can accept new students every year. We recommend that you contact the individual faculty members to learn about their scholarly interests and advising capacity in the course of preparing your application for admission. 

The Nebraska Difference

We’ve built a program aligned with national standards, supported by research, and accessible for busy professionals seeking to advance their knowledge and careers on college and university campuses. Our team of faculty have gone a step further, identifying key skills and attributes practiced by top leaders in higher education and integrated those skills, knowledge, and dispositions into our program. We call it The Nebraska Difference.

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Nebraska higher education leaders engage in Effective and Informed Administrative Practice and Lifelong Learning

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Nebraska higher education leaders engage in Equitable, Scholarly, and Reflective Practice as rising higher education administrators and leaders

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Nebraska higher education leaders Communicate and Collaborate Effectively, promoting diversity and inclusive learning environments

Our Unique Program

Faculty

  • Students learn from faculty who conduct and share leading research on contemporary challenges and opportunities in higher education. These scholars have devoted their careers to teaching, researching, discovering, and sharing what works in higher education administration.
  • Students also learn from faculty with decades of combined experience as higher education administrators and leaders who have lived and breathed the work of directors, coordinators, and supervisors at a variety of higher education institutions.
  • Courses are taught by current UNL administrators and carefully selected external professors, bringing an extra dimension of real-world credibility and authenticity to the program.

Individual Attention, Support, & Hands-on Learning

  • Students apply administrative theory and current research to their unique work environments while building supportive relationships with faculty and colleagues. Students leave the program with an expanded network of support, connections, and perspective.
  • Multiple opportunities to grow through additional, no-cost learning opportunities such as the Women in Educational Leadership Conference (WELC), the Critical Issues Forum, and the Sybouts Student Research Symposium.

Access to Leading Higher Education Professionals

  • Experienced college and university administrators share expertise from the very beginning on current issues, such as enrollment, retention, access, campus culture and climate, law, student involvement, equity, and other key topics.

From Day One

  • With a thorough background in theory and experience with its application, our graduates are Day-One-Ready for student engagement and success, recruitment and retention of students, faculty and staff, human and alumni relations, and other aspects of higher education administration.

Courses and Schedule

  • The University of Nebraska grants the EdD degree only to students who have completed a minimum of 96 graduate semester hours after attaining their Bachelor's degrees. The EdD requires completion of a minimum of 48 semester hours at UNL after admission for doctoral study, regardless of how many graduate hours you may have already acquired before admission. EdD students are required to complete 12 hours of doctoral-level research and statistics courses.

Launching Your Journey

Program Curriculum

The Ed. D. in Educational Studies with a specialization in Postsecondary Leadership allows students who are currently employed at a college or university the ability to advance their knowledge in the field so that they can be more marketable when advancing in their career.

Deviating from this sequence may delay program completion, as certain courses are offered at certain times and are subject to enrollment limits. Students unable to follow the sequence above should be in regular communication with their advisor.

Summer Courses

  • EDAD 987A Superintendent Academy I (3 hours, requires 1 week on-campus w/additional online content) A forum for dialogue and an exchange of ideas and experiences while creating a network of support for colleagues. Exploration and developing the skills, knowledge, understandings and unique features required of the superintendent's roles and responsibilities. Multiple perspectives on effective leadership and participants will be challenged to look at educational issues in new ways. Participants will be encouraged to bring contemporary educational issues to the sessions for intensive, confidential review and discussion. Interaction with session leaders and participants will be facilitated in an effort to examine the rapidly changing realities of public education and the impact these changes are having on the roles/responsibilities of the public school superintendent.
    • Credit Hours: 3
  • EDAD 920 – Diversity and Equity in Educational Organizations Understanding the individual and organizational issues of diversity and multiculturalism in P-20 schools. Increase the student’s knowledge and appreciation of the cultural, social, political, and economic realities of our complex, pluralistic society in relation to our educational system. Through the integration of relevant information from history, law, interpersonal development, organizational development, and philosophy, students will develop a complex, comprehensive understanding of diversity and equity.
    • Credit Hours: 3

Fall Courses

  • EDAD 906 Issues in System Level Administration Selected system level issues faced by pre-K to grade 12 school administrators.
    • Credit Hours: 3
  • Research/Statistics class
    • Credit Hours: 3

Spring Courses

  • EDAD 905 Issues in Governance of Educational Institutions Issues in the governance of K-12 schools including administrator-school board roles and relationships.
    • Credit Hours: 3
  • Research/Statistics class
    • Credit Hours: 3

Summer Courses

  • EDAD 988 Dissertation Proposal Development (3 hours, requires 1 week on-campus w/additional online content) Intended for students who are working on the development of their dissertation proposal. Component parts of the dissertation proposal. Students from all areas of Teachers College and the University of Nebraska who are in the process of developing their proposal will find this course to be of use. Typically the course should be taken after the research tools have been completed.
    • Credit Hours: 3
  • EDAD 986 Leadership in Educational Organizations The examination of leaders and leadership in educational organizations. Through assigned readings and written assignments, students will make applications of the readings to: a) the organization of educational institutions and programs, b) the leadership that occurs in educational organizations and programs, c) the leadership skills and actions that are necessary to achieve the mission, goals, and objectives of educational organizations, d) the student's individual leadership growth and development.
    • Credit Hours: 3

Fall Courses

  • EDAD 901 System-Level School Improvement Knowledge and skills required for system-level leaders to bring about school improvement and enhance student achievement. Creating systems that engage the public, performing in complex political environments, and delivering needed services to schools and classrooms.
    • Credit Hours: 3
  • Research/Statistics class
    • Credit Hours: 3

Spring Courses

  • EDAD 835 Business Management of Schools Allocation and management of fiscal resources including aspects of financial planning and reporting, budgeting and accounting procedures, purchasing, risk management and insurance, investing and bond issues, and auxiliary service.
    • Credit Hours: 3
  • Research/Statistics class
    • Credit Hours: 3

Comprehensive Examination should be taken in Fall of 3rd year

Summer Courses

  • EDAD 987B Superintendent Academy II (3 hours, requires 1 week on-campus w/additional online content) Designed to provide future school superintendents a link between theory and practice through case studies and voice-of-experience discussions. This academy is a forum for processing the "on-the-job" experiences with participants who are pursing doctoral studies, those who are about to enter the role of the superintendent, or those who are new to the work of school leadership. Provides training situations for developing leadership skills, examination of the practical challenges that school leaders face. Examination of contemporary educational issues through different organizational frameworks and review of various issues related to the management of change.
    • Credit Hours: 3
  • Elective
    • Credit Hours: 3

Fall Courses

  • EDAD 987C Internship: Superintendency Opportunity for educational administrators to gain an understanding of administering changes or innovations, and to obtain supervised field experience. Consideration will be given antecedents of change, change models, the role of government, forces that restrict or stimulate change, tools to implement change, and evaluation.
    • Credit Hours: 3
  • Elective (Ed Politics & Policy OR Data for Decision Making)
    • Credit Hours: 3

Upon completion of the courses through UNL, students will then spend the next few semesters writing their dissertation.

  • 12 hours of dissertation (EDAD 999) to be completed between Spring 3rd year and Spring 5th year
  • EDAD 842: College Students in America This course is designed to provide students an understanding of a broad range of facts and issues pertaining to undergraduate college students in America
    • Credit Hours: 3
  • EDAD 920: Diversity & Equity in Educational Organizations Understanding the individual and organizational issues of diversity and multiculturalism in P-20 schools. Increase the students¿ knowledge and appreciation of: cultural, social, political, and economic realities of our complex, pluralistic society in relation to our educational system. Through the integration of relevant information from history, law, interpersonal development, organizational development, and philosophy, students will develop a complex, comprehensive understanding of diversity and equity.
    • Credit Hours: 3

Frequently Asked Questions

 "My education at UNL in the EdD program prepared me well for my current position and provided me the credentials and knowledge to pursue a faculty position.  I loved my courses--a mixture of online courses and on-ground courses--and I am grateful for the outstanding faculty I was able to learn from.  Lastly, I appreciated engaging with and learning from my colleagues from across Nebraska and across the country."

Allison Kinney-Walker, Ed.D., Associate Professor, Nebraska Methodist College

 "When I transitioned into an administrative role at the community college where I had been a full-time instructor for 21 years, I realized the need to better understand the role of academic leadership and how it was vital to help faculty. The EDAD program at UNL met those needs for me and more. Not only was I challenged to look at my own skill levels as a leader, but also I was given relevant opportunities to explore aspects of the two-year college, its role and vital importance to local communities, and its vital link with its four-year partners."

Troy Nordman, Ed.D., Associate Dean of Humanities, Social and Behavioral Sciences, Butler Community College

Application Process

The application deadline for Fall admission is January 15.
Graduate Admission Requirements
  • Application for Admission with $50 non-refundable application fee. Fee waiver requests will be accepted beginning December 1, 2021. See below.
  • One set of transcripts.
  • If the student’s native language is not English, verification of English proficiency is required.
  • If International: upload copies of all college- or university-level transcripts or mark sheets (records of courses and marks earned), with certificates, diplomas, and degrees plus certified English translations.
    • Official documents are required from all students who are admitted and enroll. Photocopies of certified records are not acceptable. International students enrolled in other U.S. institutions may have certified copies of all foreign records sent directly to the Office of Graduate Studies by their current school’s registrar office.
  • If applicant is not a US citizen and expects an F or J visa: financial information.
  • Applicants must also fulfill any additional requirements the department specifies at the time of application.
    Major Admission Requirements
      • Personal Statement(2-3 pages):
        • In this letter to the admissions committee, address the following questions: What are your professional education and leadership experiences? How are equity and diversity centered in your work as an educator and a leader? How does an Ed.D. in Educational Administration figure into your career trajectory and goals as an educational leader? What is your plan and strategy to complete your degree in a timely manner? (For instance, online coursework, occasional required on-campus experiences).
      • Essay (4 pages):
        • In this essay, describe what you see as an important pressing educational challenge or opportunity in your organization or community. Be sure to identify what has been said or done (or not said or done) regarding the issue by local stakeholders to date (e.g. teachers, faculty, administrators, community members). Explain why this challenge/opportunity is important to address in your context, and how you might address it through organizational improvement efforts as part of your dissertation in practice. Explain how your scholarly inquiry regarding this challenge or opportunity could help resolve a problem of practice.
      • Resume
      • Two scholarly or professional writing samples.
      • Three recommendation letters

    FOR MORE INFORMATION AND TO START THE APPLICATION PROCESS


    Application Fee Waiver

    The Department of Educational Administration is offering an opportunity to request a waiver for the $50 Graduate Studies Application Fee. Starting January 3, 2022, EDAD will accept requests for a fee waiver for Doctoral Programs in Educational Studies. To be eligible for the waiver, students must:

    • Reside in the U.S.A. or currently be enrolled in an educational institution located in the U.S.A ;
    • Explain financial need due to the pandemic, family economic hardship, service in PeaceCorps or Americorps, etc;
    • Express a specific interest in or benefit of being in the program, summarizing their application essay in not more than 200 words.

    To request the application fee waiver, applicants to the Ph.D. in Educational Studies – Higher Education Studies/ Community College program should send an email to Program Coordinator Dr. Deryl Hatch-Tocaimaza(derylhatch@unl.edu) explaining how they meet the criteria. Waivers will be awarded on a rolling basis until designated funds are exhausted.

    Want to know more?

    Deryl Hatch-Tocaimaza Associate Professor, Educational Leadership and Higher Education ED.D. & PH.D. Coordinator

    Full Deryl Hatch-Tocaimaza bio

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