University of Vermont

Name of CPED-Influenced Program: Educational Leadership and Policy Studies
Program Description: 

Founded in 1982, the doctoral program in Educational Leadership and Policy Studies is an applied research program for professionals serving in educational leadership positions in Pre-K-12 schools, colleges, healthcare, law enforcement, and social service organizations. The program seeks to produce leaders who can construct and apply knowledge to make a positive difference in the lives of individuals, families and communities through promoting excellence in:

  • Leadership and change strategies in and across organizations;
  • Development of learning organizations in response to social issues;
  • Design, implementation and supervision of applied research in education;
  • Interpretation and application of recent research findings;
  • Understanding of broad social issues and policies from the perspectives of justice, equity, and diversity;
  • Analysis of policy in preK-12 through high school education, law enforcement, healthcare, and social services;
  • Effective management and collaboration skills.

The Cohort Model

The EdD Program at the University of Vermont has been designed as a cohort model. In this approach, a new group of no more than 20 students will be admitted each year. Each cohort group proceeds through the first two years of the program together, enrolling in the required courses. Program faculty members assist each cohort to develop into an effective learning community where students challenge and support one another. We believe that a cohort approach for adult learners fosters a spirit of community, maintains commitment, and leads to a higher completion rate as compared to other approaches to doctoral studies. In addition, the composition of the cohort represents a variety of specialized interests including Pre-K-12 education, higher education, law enforcement, healthcare and social services. Through knowledge acquisition, research, spirited dialogue and collaboration, students form lifelong professional relationships that often span decades. There is no residency requirement at this time.

Stage in Redesign Process: Experienced with Graduates
Signature Pedagogy: 

Since the program is organized around the cohort an informal system of both advising and support has developed that takes advantage of depth of student experience. The signature pedagogy of the program is its responsiveness to the needs and aspirations of its students. The program design is highly interdisciplinary drawing on the strengths and experiences of faculty and students alike. After completing the core courses in the program, students sit for a comprehensive exam. Passing this examination allows a student to submit a qualifying paper to the Graduate Faculty. After completing this final hurdle, a student may submit a dissertation proposal for review. Each doctoral student is assigned an advisor who helps with academic issues that appear from time to time. Both the Program Coordinator and their administrative assistant monitor all student progress.

Laboratories of Practice: 

At UVM EdD candidates also work full time in schools, universities and social service agencies. Much of the class discussion and course content stresses the application of theory and research to real world problems in organizations that the students are a part of. There is no formal laboratory of practice, but faculty and students are constantly creating networks of exchange based on common areas of interest and practice.

Capstone: 

The culmination of the EdD Program is the dissertation. This work can take the form of a qualitative study, quantitative study, or a scholarly personal narrative. EdD candidates are looked upon as intellectual apprentices and are also asked to work on action research and consulting projects that are organized by the faculty. Some EdD candidates are also working on grants with the Office of Sponsored Programs.

Description of each year of the Program: 

Core Curriculum Themes

The coursework and experiences contained within the 21-hour core requirement are organized around these five major themes. Associated with each theme is a listing of knowledge and skills that will be addressed across the core and other courses. Throughout the core, students will be expected to provide evidence of their knowledge and skills related to each of the themes below.

  • Organizational Theory, Change, and Leadership
  • Process of Inquiry/Applied Research and Utilization of Knowledge
  • Critical Perspectives
  • Learning and Development
  • Policy Study and Analysis

Concentrations

While the program is designed within the broad rubric of leadership, three specific concentration areas are available to students:

  • curriculum and instruction
  • leadership and policy
  • special education
 
Program Milestones: 

Schedule of Coursework

The program is designed to accommodate professionals who are currently employed in full time positions in schools, health and social service agencies, and institutions of higher education. Full time enrollment is also possible. The program requires a minimum of 56 semester credit hours beyond the Masters degree. Coursework is divided into 21 hours of Core Courses and 15 hours of courses in a selected concentration. Twenty hours of dissertation research credits are required.

Year One: The Core

During the first year, students participate in the learning community known as the cohort. This experience is comprised of two core courses each semester which are offered one evening per week from 4:00 to10:00 P.M. The content of these courses includes critical perspectives, emerging views of leadership, adult learning, organizational development and change, and qualitative research methods.

Year Two and Beyond

The core experience culminates during the second year, and includes courses on quantitative research methods and policy development and analysis. Once students have completed the core course requirements, an individually designed plan of study is constructed with the assistance of faculty members to help identify an additional 15 hours of coursework related to their area of interest. Nine of the fifteen credits can be independent study.

Admission Requirements: 

Interested candidates are required to complete an application for admission that includes the following:

  • Statement of Purpose
  • Vita
  • Letters of Recommendation
  • Transcript
  • Writing Sample
  • GRE scores

A formal application form and instructions are available online at http://www.uvm.edu/~gradcoll/.

Statement of Purpose

You must submit a one or two-page statement in which you outline your reasons for pursuing the EdD degree here at UVM. Please present a clear and compelling case for admission, which is cogent and congruent with our program's goals of providing social justice, equity, and academic excellence. Your interest in providing leadership in K-12, Higher Ed, or Human Services settings should also be clearly stated along with any other additional information concerning your background and plans that may be helpful in considering your application.

Vita

Include a current vita describing your educational background, professional experience, and publications.

Letters of Recommendation

Your letters of recommendation are a very important part of your application. Three letters are required, one from your immediate supervisor, one from a person who can speak to your academic work, and one who knows your professional work and background. Ask your references to speak specifically to your leadership experience and successes by clearly describing the kinds of initiatives you have undertaken. Academic references should speak to your intellectual/conceptual skills, writing skills, and interpersonal skills observed in class.

Transcripts

You must submit official transcripts of all prior course work (undergraduate and graduate) bearing the signature of the registrar and the seal of the institution. Unofficial copies will not be accepted.

Writing Sample

Please submit at least one sole-authored, scholarly writing sample. This can be in the form of an article, or course paper, which demonstrates the integration of, or references into the ideas and concepts articulated in the paper. Standardized Test Scores Graduate Record Examination (GRE) scores are only required if candidates are applying for a Graduate Assistantship/Fellowship. All application materials for September admission should be submitted to the Graduate Admissions Office as early as possible, but no later than FEBRUARY 1. Notification of admission, wait listing, or denial will be mailed to applicants by April 15. Please submit your GRE scores (taken in the last 5 years) from ETS.

 

Program Overview

The Doctoral Program (Ed.D.) in Educational Leadership and Policy Studies is an applied research program for professionals serving in educational leadership positions in schools, colleges, policy arenas, and social service organizations. The program seeks to produce leaders who can construct and apply knowledge to make a positive difference in the lives of individuals, families and communities through promoting excellence in:

  • leadership and change strategies in and across organizations;
  • development of learning organizations in response to social issues;
  • design, implementation and supervision of applied research in education;
  • interpretation and application of recent research findings;
  • understanding of broad social issues and policies from the perspectives of justice, equity, and diversity;
  • meeting the needs of students with disabilities and their families;
  • analysis of policy and fiscal management in education and human services; and
  • implementation of policies and practices that promote collaboration and cultural reciprocity

The Cohort Model

The Doctor of Education at the University of Vermont has been designed with a cohort approach to learning. In this approach, a new group of students are admitted each year and called a cohort. Each cohort will proceed through the first two years of the program together, enrolling in all required core courses. Program faculty will assist each cohort to develop into an effective learning community wherein students challenge and support one another. We believe that a cohort approach for adult learners fosters a spirit of community, maintains commitment, and leads to a higher completion rate as compared to other approaches to doctoral studies.

In addition, the composition of the cohort represents a variety of specialized interests including Pre-K-12 education, higher education, special education, policy study, and social services. Through knowledge acquisition, research, spirited dialogue and collaboration, students form lifelong professional relationships that often span decades.

The faculty who teach in the program, and advise students, represent multiple programs and departments in the College of Education and Social Services (e.g. Teacher Education, Special Education, Leadership, School Administration, Social Work, Higher Education)

General Information:
  • Program Delivery: On Campus
  • Average number of students admitted into the EdD program each year: 15
  • Types of employment students hold upon entering the program: The composition of the cohort represents a variety of specialized interests including Pre-K-12 education, higher education, special education, policy study, and social services. Through knowledge acquisition, research, spirited dialogue and collaboration, students form lifelong professional relationships that often span decades.
  • Student : Faculty Ratio (Courses): 15:1
  • Student : Faculty Ratio (Advising): 5:1
  • Typical bachelors degrees held by students upon entering the program: Due to the interdisciplinary nature of our doctoral program, our students hold Bachelor degrees from a number of different disciplines.
  • Typical masters degrees held by students upon entering the program: Due to the interdisciplinary nature of our doctoral program, our students hold Master's degrees from a number of different disciplines.
  • Number of credits in the program (beyond the Masters): 56
  • Professional qualifications required of prospective students: Prospective students must hold both a Bachelors and Masters degree, have experience broadly defined in the area of leadership, are committed to the principles of social justice and equity, have competent writing skills, and some background in conducting research.
  • Length of Program: 4-5 years
  • Percentage of students that graduate on time: 77%
  • Are most students part time or full time?: part time
  • Admissions Cycle: Student are admitted annually.
  • What competencies and/or attributes best characterize graduates of your program?: 
  • Average number of students enrolled in each cohort: 15
  • Total number of faculty: 25
  • Graduation Rate: 77%
  • Attrition Rate: 7%
  • Former PK-20 Practitioner, Current University Faculty: 50%
  • Current University Faculty: 50%
  • University faculty from discipline outside of education: 2%
Core Courses:
  • EDFS 455 Social Processes (3 credits)
  • EDLP 431 Organizational Leadership (3 credits)
  • EDLP 437 Policy Seminar (3 credits)
  • EDLP 432 Organizational Theory (3 credits) 
Research (9 credits - 6 preselected and 3 elective)
  • EDLP 409 Applied Qualitative Educational Research (3 credits)
  • EDLP 419 Applied Quantitative Research (3 credits)
Elective Research Courses
  • EDLP 264 Program Evaluation (3 credits)
  • EDLP 350 Survey Research Methods (3 credits)
  • EDLP 429 Advanced Quantitative Research (3 credits)
  • EDLP 439 Hierarchical Modeling (3 credits)
  • EDFS 348 Advanced Qualitative Research (3 credits)
  • EDLP 449 Dissertation Writing Seminar (3 credits)
Concentration (15 credits) Concentration (guided by student interest and committee approval) Comprehensive Examination A set exam developed by program faculty given to all students after completing core courses.. Dissertation (20 credits)Minimum 20 credits

Carnegie Project on the Education Doctorate (CPED)
Headquartered @ The University of Pittsburgh School of Education
4318 Posvar Hall - 230 S. Bouquet Street - Pittsburgh, PA 15260
info@cpedinitiative.org   +1 (412) 648-7428