Educational Leadership and Policy Studies
*Ed.D. in Educational Leadership
Campus: Blacksburg, Roanoke, Hampton Roads, Southwest Virginia, National Capital Region, Richmond
Instructions: Residential/On Campus (Some Online Courses)
Ed.D. students complete a minimum of 69 hours of coursework, conduct practically-focused dissertation research, and usually pursue careers in higher-level educational administration. Currently, the vast majority of our doctoral students pursue the Ed.D.: as such, we advertise our doctoral cohorts as “Ed.D. cohorts” and treat the Ed.D. as the default degree option. Students may attend the doctoral program at one of five Virginia Tech graduate extension centers: the Hampton Roads Center (in Virginia Beach), the Northern Virginia Center (in Falls Church), the Richmond Center, the Roanoke Center, and the Southwest Virginia Center (in Abingdon).
Why choose this program?
- The VT Educational Leadership Program is approved by the Virginia Board of Education. It is accredited by Southern Association of Colleges and Schools, National Council for Accreditation of Teacher Education, and the Educational Leadership Constituent Council.
- Since 2015, the program has been a member of the University Council for Educational Administration (UCEA), a consortium of higher education institutions committed to the advancement of educational leadership.
What You'll Study
Successful candidates will complete a minimum of 69 postmaster's credits for the Ed.D. Courses are conducted in the evening to fit the schedules of full-time educators, and the majority of courses are taught in-person or via blended learning.
Students complete all core coursework within six semesters, and graduate after a minimum of eight semesters, or approximately three years. Some students require additional semesters to complete their dissertation research, but most still graduate within three to four years of starting the program.
Course topics include advanced school law, advanced school finance, instructional leadership, governance and policy, facilities planning, theories of administration, and quantitative research methods. Each course touches upon relevant, contemporary issues in K-12 education, such as standardized testing, school safety, special education, school accreditation, diversity, educational politics, and educational reform.
In keeping with the university’s land grant mission, we strive to meet the preparation needs of educational leaders in all regions of the Commonwealth. As the result of our efforts, between one-forth and one-third of all Virginia school superintendents are Virginia Tech Educational Leadership graduates. Alumni of our program also serve as school principals, central office administrators, university presidents, state department of education officials, members of state boards of education, researchers, university faculty, and administrators of various colleges and universities including Virginia Tech itself.
Through our partnership with local P-12 schools, the Educational Leadership Program contributes substantially to the quality of education in Virginia. Under Section 23-38.88.B.9 of the Code of Virginia, the University commits itself to “work actively and cooperatively with elementary and secondary school administrators, teachers, and students in public schools and school divisions to improve student achievement, upgrade the knowledge and skills of school administrators.”
The VT Educational Leadership doctoral program is accredited by the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools, the Council for the Accreditation of Educator Preparation, and the Educational Leadership Constituent Council. It is approved by the Virginia Board of Education.
To enroll in the doctoral program, an applicant must have:
- An appropriate masters-level degree from an accredited institution
- At least a 3.3 GPA on one’s most recent two years of university coursework
- Experience serving in a school leadership position
- Doctoral applicants are expected to have already earned the Virginia school administration and supervision endorsement or equivalent licensure and to already have some experience in administration.
There is a discount for in-state K-12 teachers; use this application form in order to receive the reduced costs. Otherwise, as with on-campus students, we refer you to the VT Office of Scholarships and Financial Aid for information on financial assistance. Generally, distance learners may qualify for federal loans if they take 5 or more credit hours per semester.
*Fall: August 1
*Fall: April 1
*Deadline for early decision admission for Fall: February 1
School of Education Academic Programs Support
VT Richmond Center
2810 Parham Road,
Richmond, VA 23294
Faculty Experts in Educational Leadership