Program Structure

Hybrid Format

Doctor of Education cohort model

The format of this program is designed for educators and administrators to be able to continue full-time employment while pursuing their doctorate. Classes are held online during fall and spring semesters, while summer sessions are offered in a hybrid format (three weeks online and one week of on-campus residency at George Fox Portland Center in Portland, Oregon).

Residency Requirement in Portland, Oregon

Starting in Summer of 2020, on-campus residency will occur once per summer in Portland, Oregon and is designed to be a one-week full-time intensive experience embedded into a four-week summer session. During residency, students engage in face-to-face instruction as well as activities that build scholarly engagement in an intellectual community. Residency is a critical social environment in which faculty and students will get to know one another, shape and practice scholarly habits of mind, and grow in their academic knowledge.

Program Length

The Doctor of Education (EdD) in Educational Leadership program is designed to be completed in three years.

Students Learn within a Cohort

The EdD program is designed around the cohort model, meaning students take all core classes with the same group of students. Students build lasting relationships with both faculty and with their cohort members – experienced leaders from all over the country (and sometimes the world).

Coursework

The EdD program contains 56 credit hours of coursework. Students will fulfill these requirements by taking:

  • 38 Core Semester Credits
    • Faith and Learning/Ethics – 6 credits
    • Educational Foundations – 3 credits
    • Leadership – 3 credits
    • Teaching and Learning – 3 credits
    • Colloquium – 3 credits
    • Research – 12 credits
    • Dissertation – 8 credits
  • 12 Concentration Credits
  • 6 Elective Credits

For more information on coursework, see the curriculum sequence for each concentration.

Core Curriculum Outcomes

Core courses in the EdD program are designed to equip learners with knowledge and skills foundational to their discipline. Successful candidates will demonstrate the following outcomes:

  • Reflect critically and ethically on matters of equity and social justice in educational settings
  • Collaborate to solve educational problems and implement strategic actions that reflect justice for all students and stakeholders
  • Apply research-based skills to improve educational practice and student outcomes
  • Provide strategic leadership in educational settings
  • Analyze and apply research-based learning solutions that support schools and educational settings toward improved practice and student outcomes
Expand All

Curriculum Plan

Core Requirements

Complete the following:

This course approaches the study of ethics by examining the teachings of Jesus and contemporary ethical theories and applies them to the dilemmas of leadership within both public and private education in the culturally diverse communities they serve. Additionally, this course will examine theories and practices of educational equity in relation to various forms of social inequality and marginalization in the American context. Close reading and analysis of contemporary educational research will offer students an opportunity to explore how social justice issues play out in contemporary educational contexts and their implications for practice.
This course examines how faith, and particularly the Christian faith, can sustain the life of the mind, serving as an energizing and guiding force in the work and life of a scholar-practitioner. We will examine both the positives and challenges of serving a public religion, the shaping influence of denominational beliefs, what might it mean to teach from a Christian perspective, the concerns regarding maintaining distinctiveness yet avoiding proclamation in educational settings, and the characteristics and commitments that make an educational institution truly Christian. Quaker testimonies (values) will also be examined as a case study for the formation of wisdom communities.

Complete the following:

Educators operate in a complex web of political relationships - within schools and universities, between educational institutions and their communities, and across levels of government. This course is designed to enable educators to become more effective and responsible actors within this web of political and social relationships in order to improve, restructure, and transform educational institutions. The following questions are examined: What is power? How is political consciousness formed in children and adults? How do social problems become political issues? How is the political decision-making agenda set? How are policy issues decided? How do policy decisions affect and how are they affected by the organizational structure of institutions? How can educational leaders use political power to transform schools? The issues of change; desegregation; decentralization; equality of educational opportunity; structure of educational organization; teacher/student relationships; reform in education at elementary, secondary, postsecondary levels; and multiculturalism are also examined.

Complete the following:

After a survey of contemporary leadership theories, this course will focus on strategies for effective organization change, thoughtful organizational development, and the impact of leadership on institutional vitality – both positive and negative. Leadership will be understood as both an art form open to creativity, passion and care, and a craft requiring disciplined thought and action. Each student will also develop a personal philosophy of leadership.

Complete the following:

Analysis and investigation of current research in effective teaching methods as related to specific subject areas, learning styles, and current school reform will be applied.

Complete the following:

One-credit colloquia will be offered at each summer intensive experience in the program. Students must complete 3 credits:
This course is designed to extend and deepen thinking about education, "educational leadership" and inquiry through shared readings, interaction with faculty and local educational leaders, and critical reflective writing and conversation.

Complete the following:

This course introduces the student to both qualitative and quantitative research conducted in schools and colleges. Students learn to critically read and evaluate research in both qualitative and quantitative research paradigms, and begin to develop a literature review for their research project.
This course is designed to provide students with directed experience in critical inquiry, emergent research design, and academic writing. Basic processes of inquiry, research synthesis, and scholarly habits of mind will orient students to the kind of research and scholarship expected in their graduate program and professional careers. Article analysis and writing well as a developmental process are strong course foci. Prerequisite: EDDL 790.
This course provides an introduction to descriptive and inferential statistics for beginning educational researchers; a necessary foundation for understanding and evaluating quantitative research designs and findings. Topics focus on the statistical process of investigating education-related questions and problems of practice through data collection, analysis, and interpretation. Prerequisite: EDDL 790.

Choose one of the following:

Qualitative research does not mean just using words instead of numbers. This research tradition is increasingly being used in education to answer questions for which experimental and quantitative methods are inappropriate or incomplete. This course introduces the basic issues of theory and method in qualitative research and provides a structured, supportive environment for learning the essential skills of qualitative research. These skills include negotiating a research relationship with those studied, identifying and critiquing one's own assumptions about the people and issues studied, developing research questions, conducting observations and interviews, confronting ethical issues, analyzing qualitative data, and communicating the results of research. Prerequisite EDDL 790.
This course is designed for those who desire further preparation in quantitative research designs. Specific focus will be on the nature and issues associated with prominent quantitative designs in employed in educational research such as existing data, survey research, experimental and quasi-experimental designs, and meta-analyses. The course will examine the advantages and disadvantages of various quantitative designs. It will also help students to identify which designs are best suited for the general research question they are considering. Prerequisite: EDDL 790

Complete the following:

Within six units of core plus concentration, students take the following dissertation courses.

Note:
**Doctoral students may take a maximum of 4 hours of doctoral dissertation research hours in any semester. EDDL 805 is for students who do not finish their dissertation research within the minimum 8 hours, and is repeated until the dissertation is finished. Students who make satisfactory progress each semester on their dissertation will receive a Pass grade until the dissertation is completed.

Students are required to take a minimum of 8 semester credits for dissertation work (typically spread across fall/spring semesters of Year 3). If the student has not finished the dissertation in this timeframe, s/he must stay continuously enrolled in dissertation credits (2 credits per semester) until the dissertation is completed. Prerequisites: EDDL 790, 791, 792 and 793 or 794.
Students are required to take a minimum of 8 semester credits for dissertation work (typically spread across fall/spring semesters of Year 3). If the student has not finished the dissertation in this timeframe, s/he must stay continuously enrolled in dissertation credits (2 credits per semester) until the dissertation is completed. Prerequisite: EDDL 800. Can be enrolled concurrently with EDDL 800 with the permission of the Doctor of Education Program director.
Students are required to take a minimum of 8 semester credits for dissertation work (typically spread across fall/spring semesters of Year 3). If the student has not finished the dissertation in this timeframe, s/he must stay continuously enrolled in dissertation credits (2 credits per semester) until the dissertation is completed. Pre-requisite: EDDL 801
Students are required to take a minimum of 8 semester credits for dissertation work (typically spread across fall/spring semesters of Year 3). If the student has not finished the dissertation in this timeframe, s/he must stay continuously enrolled in dissertation credits (2 credits per semester) until the dissertation is completed. Pre-Requisite:EDDL 802. Can be enrolled concurrently with EDDL 802 with the permission of the Doctor of Education Program director.
Required of doctoral level students who did not complete their dissertation research in EDDL 800-803. Credit hours to be determined by dissertation chair regarding time to completion.

Concentrations (18 hours - Choose one)

Complete the following:

A course designed to lead professors to gain knowledge and skill in instructional planning, teaching, and assessment in face-to-face, blended, and online instructional environments. Students will review current research focused on young adult and adult learners.
A course designed to introduce students to the history of higher education from ancient times through the Middle Ages to the development of the current state of the American research university from a Colonial College Model. The course is designed to focus on how events and issues from the past have been addressed and how they tend to resurface today. The intent is to provide the student with insight, perspectives, and wisdom to address contemporary issues and improve current practice.
This course is designed to accomplish three things: (1) provide an synopsis of cogent leadership theories and their application to higher education; (2) offer an overview of the structures, challenges, and concerns facing senior higher education administrators, and (3) identify and examine the management functions at work in contemporary higher education.
This course examines contemporary trends and issues in American higher education designed to orient students to issues, ideas, and literature that constitute the study of higher education, with emphasis on underlying social and political issues that shape higher education and organizational change.

Elective Coursework (6 hours required)

Bringing about change in organizations requires a unique set of leadership skills. Those charged with leadership responsibilities need knowledge and skill to lead people and teams in productive ways. This course explores emerging theories related to leading people.
This course examines the idea of the university since its beginning in medieval times, paying particular attention to thinkers in the 19th, 20th, and 21st centuries. The intent is to provide the student with a philosophical orientation and perspective on recurring contemporary issues related to HE, helping to guide decision making at all levels of the institution in order to provide wise care of the structures, values, practices, and persons who live and work in institutions of higher education.
In this course, teacher leaders will explore and practice processes that help educators to make informed data driven decisions related to classroom and school-wide outcomes. Advanced work with formative and summative assessment prepares teacher leaders to direct building initiatives.
This course focuses on the real-world issues of planning for, implementing, sustaining, and institutionalizing the use of technology to enhance teaching and learning throughout an educational organization.
Education is ever on the agenda of national governments. What role is education expected to play in national development? In this course students will examine the varied ways by which different nations tackle issues such as equity, efficiency, and quality in education. The course will also examine the conceptual and methodological questions underlying the field of comparative education. Particular attention is given to types of social and political analysis that may be applied to comparative and cross-national studies in education.
1, 2, or 3 credits: This internship provides apprenticeship-learning opportunities alongside EdD professors, with a focus on developing and applying knowledge for educational practice. Students may demonstrate proficiency in program evaluation as part of the internship. Internships provide students with in-depth learning experiences in settings outside the university classroom. Opportunities include research-based partnerships with EdD professors or other possible educational partners. All internships are planned and completed under the guidance of a university faculty member. Students in the EdD program should consider internships as elective options to enrich their program of study. Please contact an individual faculty member for each internship experience at least one semester prior to enrolling.
Research, theory and effective practice is explored in this course on mentoring in educational settings.
This course is designed for students who wish to delve more deeply into a specific area of study relevant to their doctoral concentration, and to write about that subject in a scholarly manner, producing material worthy of publication. In partnership with the professor of record, students will construct a list of scholarly publications and resources to engage, and a writing schedule with content criteria, submission due dates, and desired outcomes for the seminar.
1, 2, or 3 hours: This internship provides apprenticeship alongside GFU professors teaching undergrad or graduate teacher education courses in the student’s field of study. Emphasis is on developing thoughtful and informed pedagogy in online, hybrid, or face-to-face learning environments. Internships provide students with in-depth learning experiences in settings outside the university classroom. Opportunities include teaching-based partnerships with EdD professors. All internships are planned and completed under the guidance of a university faculty member. Students in the EdD program should consider internships as elective options to enrich their program of study. Please contact the individual faculty member for each internship experience at least one semester prior to enrolling.

Complete the following:

In this class, candidates will gain advanced knowledge of curriculum theory, policy, models and practice. They will learn to lead curriculum development and assessment projects, and explore research-based instruction and assessment to support curriculum development.
This course examines the adult learner and principles of effective professional development.
Bringing about change in organizations requires a unique set of leadership skills. Those charged with leadership responsibilities need knowledge and skill to lead people and teams in productive ways. This course explores emerging theories related to leading people.
This course will lead students to reflect and act on the intersection of personal, interpersonal, and organizational influences on beliefs, values, policies, practices, and structures. They will examine the ways these influences prohibit or advantage educational equity and opportunity for all individuals. Students will explore leadership that promotes equitable policies, procedures, and systems to enhance learning within P-20 or community-based educational organizations.

Elective Coursework (6 hours required)

Bringing about change in organizations requires a unique set of leadership skills. Those charged with leadership responsibilities need knowledge and skill to lead people and teams in productive ways. This course explores emerging theories related to leading people.
This course examines the idea of the university since its beginning in medieval times, paying particular attention to thinkers in the 19th, 20th, and 21st centuries. The intent is to provide the student with a philosophical orientation and perspective on recurring contemporary issues related to HE, helping to guide decision making at all levels of the institution in order to provide wise care of the structures, values, practices, and persons who live and work in institutions of higher education.
In this course, teacher leaders will explore and practice processes that help educators to make informed data driven decisions related to classroom and school-wide outcomes. Advanced work with formative and summative assessment prepares teacher leaders to direct building initiatives.
This course focuses on the real-world issues of planning for, implementing, sustaining, and institutionalizing the use of technology to enhance teaching and learning throughout an educational organization.
Education is ever on the agenda of national governments. What role is education expected to play in national development? In this course students will examine the varied ways by which different nations tackle issues such as equity, efficiency, and quality in education. The course will also examine the conceptual and methodological questions underlying the field of comparative education. Particular attention is given to types of social and political analysis that may be applied to comparative and cross-national studies in education.
1, 2, or 3 credits: This internship provides apprenticeship-learning opportunities alongside EdD professors, with a focus on developing and applying knowledge for educational practice. Students may demonstrate proficiency in program evaluation as part of the internship. Internships provide students with in-depth learning experiences in settings outside the university classroom. Opportunities include research-based partnerships with EdD professors or other possible educational partners. All internships are planned and completed under the guidance of a university faculty member. Students in the EdD program should consider internships as elective options to enrich their program of study. Please contact an individual faculty member for each internship experience at least one semester prior to enrolling.
Research, theory and effective practice is explored in this course on mentoring in educational settings.
This course is designed for students who wish to delve more deeply into a specific area of study relevant to their doctoral concentration, and to write about that subject in a scholarly manner, producing material worthy of publication. In partnership with the professor of record, students will construct a list of scholarly publications and resources to engage, and a writing schedule with content criteria, submission due dates, and desired outcomes for the seminar.
1, 2, or 3 hours: This internship provides apprenticeship alongside GFU professors teaching undergrad or graduate teacher education courses in the student’s field of study. Emphasis is on developing thoughtful and informed pedagogy in online, hybrid, or face-to-face learning environments. Internships provide students with in-depth learning experiences in settings outside the university classroom. Opportunities include teaching-based partnerships with EdD professors. All internships are planned and completed under the guidance of a university faculty member. Students in the EdD program should consider internships as elective options to enrich their program of study. Please contact the individual faculty member for each internship experience at least one semester prior to enrolling.

Complete the following:

Students participate in discussions and/or activities dealing with site-based management, decision making, mentoring, management of human resources, and issues dealing with professional leadership in education.
This course focuses on legal issues that arise in elementary, secondary, and collegiate institutions. The course provides educators with knowledge and analytic skills needed to apply legal frameworks to educational policy including the statutes regulating financial policy. The course investigates creative ways in which law can be used to help address current problems in schools, and helps educators think through questions of ethics and policy that legal disputes raise but do not resolve.
This course examines how belief structures undergird the methods educators use to motivate people to learn. Through the light of ethical theory, students examine how organizational leaders respond to the situations they face. Students also reflect on and apply their own values and ethical understanding to shed light on case studies that represent situations they often face as educational leaders.
This course is designed to help educational leaders understand key ideas central to ongoing research on teaching and learning to establish educational policy and transform educational practice at their institutions. The course emphasizes ways in which cultural, social, and organizational contexts influence learning. Students will learn to use the clinical supervision model and other tools for supervising and evaluating teacher performance based on best practices. The course will examine the leader's role in establishing and maintaining an environment that is conducive to student and adult learning.
This course is designed for those who want to understand how to manage the school budget successfully in a school. The day-to-day budget issues, including prioritizing, monitoring, and approving expenditures, will be discussed as well as the underlying framework of public budgets, Oregon State Chart of Accounts. This course provides practical knowledge and skills needed to read budget documents with understanding. Practices that encourage ethical care, goal oriented spending, and knowledgeable monitoring are explored and developed.
This course provides an opportunity for candidates for the Preliminary Administrator License to prepare and to present evidence that the practicum experience developed knowledge, skills, and dispositions reflected in the TSPC standards, the School of Education conceptual framework, and the dispositions.
Practicum experiences are carried out at a building level of responsibility by working concurrently in two different authorization level sites. Principal License candidates will begin a practicum in elementary, middle level, and high schools under the direct supervision of a university supervisor and a licensed school administrator. Assignments will require candidates to learn about issues at the site, work with mentors to resolve the issues, and evaluate how they are being handled. These experiences will be supplemented by online administrative academic projects that focus on school governance and partnerships along with school management topics. The university supervisor and candidates will communicate via the Internet providing feedback to colleagues on various projects. Pass/No Pass
Practicum experiences continue at a building level of responsibility. Principal License candidates will complete a practicum in elementary, middle level, and high schools under the direct supervision of a university supervisor and a licensed school administrator. Practicum experiences are supplemented by online administrative academic projects that focus on curriculum and staff development, supervision and evaluation, and personnel hiring. The supervisors and candidates will communicate via the Internet. Pass/No Pass

Complete the following:

This is a core requirement of the Professional Administrative Licensure program and requires admission to the doctoral program, the Professional Administrative Licensure program, or specific advisor approval. This course focuses on district-level leadership roles and the importance of shared vision. Participants will assess their management styles in light of the requirements of various upper-level management positions in a variety of educational organizations. The class will examine how education districts of various sizes organize to maximize learning and to perform necessary functions as required by state and national mandates. Topics include establishing a vision for the organization, empowering others to lead, human resource selection and development, working with other leaders, making public presentations, and dealing with hostile constituents.
This is a core requirement of the Professional Administrative Licensure program and requires admission to the doctoral program, the Professional Administrative Licensure program, or specific advisor approval. This course focuses on leadership responsibilities of specialized programs. The class will examine how educators can navigate federal mandates for special programs using Oregon's statutes, administrative rules, and agencies as a model. Participants will be involved through discussions, simulations, and presentations utilizing materials and personnel from a variety of educational organizations. Course topics include: administrating special programs (e.g., special education, talented and gifted, English as a second language); dealing with curricular and legal issues encountered in delivering these services to children; and developing strategies to improve the academic performance of students through special programs. Additional emphasis will be placed on emerging leadership strategies to address the needs of alternative education students.
This is a core requirement of the Professional Administrative Licensure program and requires admission to the doctoral program, the Professional Administrative Licensure program, or specific advisor approval. The role of the school superintendent is increasingly challenging and requires specialized knowledge and skills to avoid common pitfalls. This course provides practical knowledge and skills needed to succeed in the superintendent role focusing on school board relations and communication, facility development, collective bargaining, grievance resolution, board meeting management, board member development, and advanced personnel issues such as dismissal and sexual harassment investigation.
This is a core requirement of the Professional Administrative Licensure program and requires admission to the doctoral program, the Professional Administrative Licensure program, or specific advisor approval. This course surveys the principles and practices useful to the evaluation of organizational programs and policies. Participants examine the models and tools used in informing educational and other leaders as to evaluation purpose, design, and methods for understanding the role of evaluation in program planning, implementation, and accountability. The course focuses on understanding: the purposes of evaluation, the role of the evaluator, evaluation designs and analysis, presentation of evaluation results, and the role of evaluation conclusions in organizational decision making.
This is a core requirement of the Professional Administrative Licensure program and requires admission to the doctoral program, the Professional Administrative Licensure program, or specific advisor approval. Educational leaders must balance the allocation of scarce resources among competing interests while managing the organizational structure and empowering those who support the organizational mission. This course prepares educators to address the value tensions inherent in the allocation of resources and the educational consequences linked to those fiscal decisions. Issues of efficiency, equity, adequacy, and control in educational finance will be specifically addressed from historical, economic, moral, legal, and political perspectives. The course also provides a critical analysis of organizations, how they function, why people in organizations behave as they do, and examines the formal and informal decision-making structures that affect educational organizations.
Practicum experiences are carried out at building or district level of responsibility. Practicum experiences are supplemented by online administrative academic projects that focus on advanced competencies of administration. The supervisors and candidates will communicate via the Internet. Pass/No Pass
Practicum experiences will continue at a district level of responsibility. Practicum experiences are supplemented by online administrative academic projects that focus on advanced competencies of administration. The supervisors and candidates will communicate via the Internet. Pass/No Pass