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EdD Program Requirements | College of Education

EdD Program Requirements

Program Description & Goal

The Doctor of Education (Ed.D.) degree program prepares students for scholarly inquiry and professional leadership in education. The program consists of (1) applied research, (2) courses and professional experiences in education and related fields designed to develop a comprehensive academic basis for leadership roles in education, and (3) applied professional experiences tailored to individual needs and career goals.

The degree of Doctor of Education is offered to students who wish to pursue a program of study and participate in appropriate activities in preparation for professional service and leadership in education. The program is designed to meet the needs of those for whom intensive research is not a prerequisite to accomplishing professional goals. Doctoral students are expected to participate not only in organized coursework but also in other activities that will ensure breadth of outlook and technical competence. The goal of the Ed.D. degree program is to prepare graduates to improve their professional practice as educators in early childhood-12, corporate or government settings, community college, or other settings.

General Program Outcomes

  1. Academic Knowledge:  Students will demonstrate a deep understanding of education and professional leadership, a broad understanding of various methods of inquiry in education and applied research theory.
  2. Practical Competence:  Students will demonstrate competence in leadership, various methods of inquiry, and the skillful application of research findings to practice settings.
  3. Reflective Inquiry:  Students will demonstrate the ability to monitor and reflect upon leadership traits, to guide their own scholarship, to foster ethical and professional research and practice in education, as well as to demonstrate a reflective and analytical stance towards scholarship in general. 
  4. Democratic Commitment:  Students will demonstrate in both scholarship and leadership a deep commitment to diversity in education and an understanding of the relationship between educational settings and the complex process of democracy and a commitment to pursue this process with a focus on access to quality education for all learners in their own professional work.
  5. Professional Engagement:  Students will continuously promote excellence in applied professional practice. In doing so students will belong to local, regional, and national/international associations and make evident benefits and contributions that result from these memberships.

Applicant Eligibility & Admission

Consult program for additional requirements

Applicants must have completed a master’s degree from an accredited institution and have a minimum of 3 years early childhood to grade 12 teaching experience or equivalent (with the exception of the Educational Administration – Adult & Post Secondary cognate and Instructional Technology). Admission to the program requires the following: 

  • UW application & fee
  • Official Transcripts
  • Three current letters of recommendation
  • College of Education application
  • Academic Resume

International students - TOEFL (minimum score of 540 written, 76 online) or IELTS (minimum score of 6.5)

  • GRE (minimum score of 153 verbal, 144 quantitative, and 4.0 analytical writing)
  • Application cover letter
  • Sample of academic writing

Application deadlines and any additional requirements are determined by faculty in the specific program areas.          

General Program Requirements & Descriptions

Consult program for additional requirements

A minimum of 72 semester hours beyond the Bachelor's degree is required by UW for a doctoral degree, although each program concentration typically requires additional credits. Students may, with the approval of the faculty, transfer up to 30 semester hours from an accredited, relevant master’s degree program. All coursework, including transfer courses, must be approved by the student's committee. The program of study, developed collaboratively by the student and the committee, constitutes an agreement wherein the minimum coursework requirements for that student’s degree are listed. In addition to organized coursework, the doctoral student will be required to complete a preliminary exam and an approved applied project within the major field of professional specialization.

Outreach Delivery 

All programs are offered through Outreach Credit Programs; courses are delivered via distance modalities such as online, video-conferencing, audio, intensive weekends, and hybrid approaches. A very limited number of courses will be offered on the Laramie campus but will be scheduled to accommodate distance students. 

Residency Requirement

There are no college-wide residency requirements. However, some programs may require students to come to campus for various reasons such as orientations, workshops, courses, or committee meetings.

Time to Completion

Students are required to complete the degree within 8 calendar years, and within no more than 4 calendar years of the completion of their preliminary examination.

Graduate Student Committees

Graduate student committee membership will be approved by the department head and the college dean. Committees will consist of the following three members:  two faculty members from within the student’s program area (including the chair) and one UW faculty member from outside the program and department. Additional members may be added as determined by the student and the chair.

Preliminary Examination 

The format of the preliminary examination will be determined by faculty in each specific program area. Options may include traditional written examinations, oral examinations, annual reviews, portfolios, or any combination.

Final (Applied) Project

Doctor of Education students will use research methods to explore practical leadership problems. Applied projects are problem-based and may be collaborative. Projects may involve evaluating curriculum, designing and implementing professional development or training, developing applications to be used in local settings (e.g., early childhood-12 education, corporate and government centers), as well as other projects designed to advance knowledge in a specific field or setting. 

The following requirements apply to all projects:

  • Research-based (literature review)
  • Scholarly, academic writing using APA style
  • Primary or secondary data
  • Authored by individual or small groups of students
  • Uploaded to Wyoming Scholars Repository (WySR), except dissertations, which will be submitted to ProQuest

Suggested project formats and brief descriptions are:

Dissertation

  • A dissertation is original empirical research with data collection expected from primary sources. 

Local Case Study

  • A case study is a descriptive, exploratory, or explanatory analysis of a person, group, or event.  Thomas (2011, p. 354) offered the following definition of case study: “Case studies are analysis of persons, events, decisions, periods, projects, policies, institutions, or others systems that are studied holistically by one of more methods.”

Faculty Directed Individual or Team-based Inquiry

  • This type of inquiry involves individual or a small group of students working together on a single project under the guidance of a faculty member. Data can be obtained from primary or secondary sources.

Documentary on an Educational Issue

  • A documentary is an in-depth and extensive study with an analysis presented in video form accompanied by a written summary of the purpose and outcome.

Submitted Manuscript

  • A full-length research manuscript must be submitted to a refereed mid- or top-tier national or international scholarly journal.

Program Evaluation

  • A program evaluation report typically uses both qualitative and quantitative research methods to examine and collect data on a current program that is in place in a school or another organization.

Additional project formats may be proposed and approved by the student’s committee as long as they meet the requirements listed above.

Final Project Processes

As in the traditional dissertation process, all students are expected to meet with their committees to gain project approval (at the pre-prospectus and/or prospectus stage). The Report of Final Examination will indicate whether or not the final project is acceptable to the committee. The deadline for submitting projects to WySR (or dissertations to ProQuest) is the same as the Report of Final Examination, the last day of classes for the semester during which a student intends to graduate.

All projects will be evaluated by committee members and also by the student. An annual award will be given to one student each spring based on these evaluations and on an external review of the project.


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College of Education

Ray Reutzel, Dean

Dept. 3374

1000 E. University Ave.

Laramie, WY 82071

Phone: (307) 766-3145

Email: edquest@uwyo.edu

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