Endicott students and faculty in class

Doctor of Education (Ed.D.)

Endicott is the first college on Boston’s North Shore to be authorized to award a doctoral degree. With endorsement by the Massachusetts Board of Higher Education, Endicott College will award a doctoral degree in Educational Leadership to qualified candidates.

Links and Contacts

The Doctor of Education (Ed.D.) in Educational Leadership will focus on preparing unique leaders for small to mid-size organizations in higher education, non-profit agencies, and schools. Emphasizing Endicott College’s strength, the program will focus on theory, research, and applying these skills to improving organizations.

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Doctoral students say why they chose Endicott.

Doctor of Education (Ed.D) Educational Leadership

Program Overview 

Course Description 

Meet the Faculty 



Program Mission Statement

Leadership for small higher education institutions requires creativity, flexibility, strategic thinking, an entrepreneurial stance, and a respect for student-centered institutions. The mission of the Doctor of Education (Ed.D.) in Educational Leadership is to prepare professionals for leadership roles in the administration of small colleges and universities, non-profit agencies and schools.

This doctoral program integrates research and practice so that doctoral students understand the historical, political, social, and philosophical aspects of small colleges and universities which have challenges and opportunities that distinguish them from larger institutions. Applied learning, the hallmark of Endicott, is demonstrated through an apprenticeship in which doctoral students explore areas of specializations within senior leadership positions such as academic affairs, student development, institutional advancement, financial affairs, faculty development, and facilities.

The Doctor of Education (Ed.D.) in Educational Leadership is designed for career professionals in higher education who wish to attain leadership positions in small- to mid-sized colleges or universities, including both two and four-year college settings, or in smaller colleges or satellite campuses within larger universities. In this cohort-based program, a combination of different roles, perspectives, and experiences enriches the program and its participants.


Program Overview

The Doctor of Education (Ed.D.) in Educational Leadership program is a cohort-based degree option which allows students to complete coursework within five semesters, followed by completion of the qualifying examination. Upon successful completion of phases I and II, students engage in a unique apprenticeship where they apply and reflect on leadership knowledge and skills, test theory in a practice setting, acquire credentials for advancement , and concurrently design and develop their dissertation proposal.   Dissertation research and writing is completed with the support and guidance of a faculty committee.

The Doctor of Education (Ed.D.) in Educational Leadership program is not an online program. The program is structured to offer face to face week-end courses to cohort groups of students.  Students are expected to have information and communication technology (ICT) skills and capability. Online elements will supplement the classroom interactions.

A distinguishing feature of Endicott’s educational leadership program is the administrative apprenticeship designed to assist doctoral students in acquiring the credentials needed for advancement. The apprenticeship will help develop talented leaders who will be able to assist small- to mid-sized institutions in the challenging years ahead.

Program Requirements

The Doctor of Education (Ed.D.) in Educational Leadership program is a 48 credit program with three phases of study that encompass the following elements:

  • 36 credits of required core courses
  • Comprehensive Exam
  • 6 credits of Administrative Apprenticeship
  • 6 credits of Dissertation Proposal
  • Participation in Human Subjects Protection Training
  • Dissertation Research and Report
  • Public presentation of Dissertation Research to the Community


Program of Study

***Doctoral Schedule*** 

Year 1

Phase I (33 credits) – Doctoral Study 
Fall Semester I
EDL 701 History and Administration of Small Colleges 3 credits
EDL 715 A Research Methods I: Qualitative 3 credits
Spring Semester II
EDL 726 Organizational Management in Higher Education 3 credits
EDL 735 Research Methods II: Quantitative 3 credits
EDL 762  Leading in a Technological World  3 credits 
Summer Semester III 
EDL 732  Creativity and Leadership in Challenging Times  3 credits
EDL 764  Theories and Practice in Academic Leadership  3 credits


Year 2

Fall Semester IV  (New Tuition Rates Apply) 
EDL 752  Research Methods III: Issues in Research  3 credits 
EDL 760  Student Development: History and Issues  3 credits
Spring  Semester V
EDL 746  Finance, Budget and Operations  3 credits 
EDL 768 Teaching, Learning & Institutional Culture in Higher Education 3 credits
Phase II  Comprehensive Exam
EXM 700  Comprehensive Exam  0 credits 
Phase III (15 credits) - Dissertation
Summer  Semester VI
EDL 770A  Administrative Apprenticeship: Pt I  3 credits
EDL 755A  Dissertation Proposal: Pt I  3 credits


Year 3

Fall  Semester VII   
EDL 770B  Administrative Apprenticeship: Pt II  3 credits 
EDL 755B Dissertation Proposal: Pt II 3 credits
Spring Semester VIII    
EDL 740  Inquiry in Higher Education  3 credits 
EDL 782 Dissertation Study 0 credits
Summer– Semester IX
EDL 782

Dissertation Study
(note: students continue to register each semester for Dissertation Study until completion)
0 credits


*Note:  Course Sequence Subject to Change


Student Advising

Each student admitted to the Doctor of Education (Ed.D.) in Educational Leadership program will be assigned a faculty advisor who will guide his/her study until Phase III.  The Dissertation Committee serves during Phase III. It consists four members: the student, who serves as convener of the committee; a chair, who can be the student’s advisor; and two additional professional/faculty members, one of whom can be from outside Endicott College. The responsibilities of the Dissertation Committee are to approve the dissertation prospectus and the dissertation research methodology, to advise students to seek approval of the IRB before proceeding with data collection, and to evaluate the dissertation as a contribution to the field of Educational Leadership. The student convenes a final meeting, during which the student will make an oral defense of the dissertation to committee members and the Director of the Doctor of Education (Ed.D.) program. The student also makes a public presentation to the Endicott community, once the committee has approved the dissertation.


Program Components

Phase I. Students accepted to the Doctor of Education (Ed.D.) program will be admitted in cohort groups. Students will complete 33 required credits of coursework in educational leadership, administration, and qualitative and quantitative research.

Phase II. In Phase II of the Doctor of Education (Ed.D.) program all students are required to pass a comprehensive exam that is based on the core courses. Students will take the exam in the spring of the second year (semester five) or when all the required courses are completed. Students must pass the exam before beginning EDL 770 Administrative Apprenticeship and EDL 755 Dissertation Proposal.   A student will advance to Phase III—Doctoral Candidate after passing the comprehensive exam.

Phase III—Doctoral Candidate, This is the final phase of the program and includes the completion of an apprenticeship and a dissertation. The administrative apprenticeship, a 6 credit course will be two semesters long and have a minimum of 224 hours of apprenticeship, which will be documented by the student and submitted at the end of the class with the remaining course requirements. By enrolling in EDL 770-Administrative Apprenticeship and EDL 755 Dissertation Proposal, simultaneously, the student will be able to link their dissertation topic with their apprenticeship experiences. The dissertation is research-based and must include original research. Students will develop dissertation proposals in consultation with their dissertation committee. 


Application Requirements

Students must submit an application form, an application fee, plus:

  1. Complete, official transcripts from all previous, post-secondary education.
  2. Three letters of recommendation. At least one letter of recommendation must be authored by an academic respondent holding an earned doctorate degree who can attest to your ability to complete doctoral study successfully.
  3. An original 6-10 page (double-spaced, 12 pt. font) Personal Statement. Please respond to these questions: 1) What relevant knowledge, skills, experiences bring you to this point of considering doctoral study? 2) In what ways will doctoral study support your academic, professional and/or personal goals? 3) What would be your ideal apprenticeship and why? This is an opportunity for you to demonstrate your writing skills. Please be sure that your full name is included on the pages of your Personal Statement. 
  4. Official copy of scores from either the Graduate Record Exam (GRE) Code: 3854 or the Miller Analogies Test (MAT) Code: 2567. 
  5. All students for whom English is not a first language must submit scores from the Test of English as a Foreign Language (TOEFL). Code 3369
  6. A copy of your resume or curriculum vitae with evidence of at least three years of related, professional experience.
  7. A Writing Sample. In addition to the Personal Statement, doctoral applicants are asked to submit a short paper (limit 10 pages), double-spaced, in 12 point font responding to a particular question: What are the most critical challenges facingleaders in higher education today? The writing sample will be evaluated for evidence of:  thoughtful analysis, ability to develop main points and support claims, focus and organization, academic style, use of sentence variety and vocabulary to convey meaning clearly, control of sentence structure, language, grammar and punctuation. Please be sure that your full name is on the document. 
  8. An admission interview is required of all candidates; please call the Program Director at 978-998-7753 to make arrangements.

Application Deadline: The deadline to apply for the Fall 2013 cohort is June 1, 2013


Financial Aid

Financial aid is limited to US citizens or eligible non-citizens with a valid Alien Registration Number. Students must be enrolled in an approved program and be in good academic standing to receive financial aid. Aid for graduate students is limited to federal Stafford Loans. If students are interested, please refer to the Endicott GPS Financial Aid web page.

Tuition and Fees

Tuition and fees are paid on a semester basis. The cost for each semester is $4,788 (fall 2013 rate) plus a $1,200 per semester doctoral fee. Small increases are anticipated to take place each fall semester.

Tuition Refund Policy

The Doctor of Education (Ed.D.) in Educational Leadership program is approved by the Massachusetts Board of Higher Education.  Endicott College is accredited by the New England Association of Schools and Colleges (NEASC).  In spring 2011 NEASC reviewed and approved Endicott’s request to offer the new doctoral degree level. 


Program of Study


Year 1


EDL 701 - History and Administration of Small Colleges (Cr: 3 cr.)
EDL 715 - Research Methods I: Qualitative (Cr: 3 cr.)
EDL 726 - Organizational Management in Higher Education (Cr: 3 cr.)
EDL 732 - Creativity and Leadership in Challenging Times (Cr: 3 cr.)
EDL 764 - Theories and Practice in Academic Leadership (Cr: 3 cr.)

Learning Outcomes

  1. Incorporate mastery of knowledge from nursing and other disciplines to engage in activities that extend disciplinary knowledge as a scholar and researcher.
  2. Combine logical, critical and scientific thinking with ethical integrity in the design, conduct, analysis, interpretation and dissemination of nursing research.
  3. Integrate the philosophical foundations of knowledge into theory and research development that contributes to the improving nursing care and practice.
  4. Select theories and research relevant to the care of diverse, ethnic and cultural populations.
  5. Collaborate and communicate as a scholar within nursing and interdisciplinary community in the conduct and application of research.
  6. Pursue lifelong learning and ongoing personal development through excellence in scholarly activities within and beyond the discipline.
  7. Embrace the diversity of opportunities for career development, professional roles and disciplinary leadership as a nurse scientist, scholar, educator or mentor.

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