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Doctorate in Education

Education Ed.D.


The Doctorate in Education (Ed. D.) degree at Concordia University is for graduate students seeking to maximize their leadership and scholarship talents with the support of their colleagues, faculty, and instructional practitioners. The coursework blends leadership and scholarship learning through 17 courses which prepare students to research, analyze, and write their dissertation. Each student is assigned a leadership coach to support and mentor them throughout their learning experience.


Course Length

64 Credit Hours


On Campus & Online

At the completion of the eight semesters of coursework, students will have developed a draft of the first three chapters of the required five chapter dissertation and a personalized leadership profile website.  The program ensures a four-year pathway to completion of the doctorate degree.

Two salient leadership areas are designed into the program. The first area of concentration addresses the application of leadership approaches to advance organizations through implementation of planning, problem-solving, communication, collaboration and learning facilitation. The second area focuses on scholarship for understanding, evaluating, and producing research applicable to improving organizations. The program is designed to enhance leadership and scholarship skills in a student’s current role and as they plan for their dynamic future with the completed degree.

The doctoral degree provides advanced career opportunities in a variety of educational fields. The degree is also transferable to numerous leadership opportunities beyond education, including private, non-profit, public, and government organizations. Most importantly, students complete their doctorate with a recognition of the importance that the embedded learning has had on their effectiveness to serve, lead research and continually develop as a practitioner. An optional Educational Specialist degree in Organizational Leadership is available to students that are not able to complete their dissertation because of a life circumstance.

The graduate profile identifies the attainable Leadership Doctorate Outcomes through a collective commitment from all students, faculty and instructors. 

“Transforming communities through Educational Leadership” 

  • Graduates acquire a broad understanding of the theory, knowledge and research foundational to the field of educational leadership.  This includes the ability to analyze, evaluate and eventually produce research for the purposes of addressing a problem of practice and improving organizations and systems.

    Graduates attain expertise in a specialized area of study through inquiry, analysis research, and problem solving.  This expertise, in turn, enhances their applied leadership talents.

    Graduates demonstrate their analytical skills through effective written and oral communication for a variety of audiences, including academic, practitioner, organizational and community audiences.  

  • Graduates demonstrate mission-focused leadership strategies to advance organizations and systems of any size through the implementation of planning, problem-solving, communication and learning facilitation.

    Graduates demonstrate leadership skills in self-reflection, moral courage, political relations and well-being.

  • Graduates demonstrate solution-seeking approaches to problems by engaging others through inspiration, design and creativity.

    Graduates demonstrate the ability to lead by accessing change theories, data analysis, resource management, future directions and continuous improvements models.

  • Graduates understand the power of community by being equity-focused, engaging of all, empathic and civically responsible.

    Graduates demonstrate the principles of servant leadership and collaboration.

Meet our Faculty

Dr. Ric Dressen

Chairperson Education Doctorate Programs

Stephen O'Connor

Assistant Professor, Ed.S. Educational Leadership

Dr. Laura Wangsness Willemsen

Assistant Professor of Education