(Program starts summer 2023.)
The Doctor of Philosophy in Educational Leadership prepares you to become equity-minded leaders and faculty. You will be prepared to critically analyze and dismantle inequity within pre-kindergarten through higher education systems, collaborate with community partners to understand and help advance educational justice, create new knowledge through rigorous research, and promote teaching practice from an equity perspective.
As a graduate of the educational leadership doctoral program, you will have a systematic and critical understanding of U.S. Pre-K-12 and higher education educational systems through the examination of historical trends, educational policy, and practice. You will gain specialized research skills for the advancement of learning, knowledge, and/or professional practice. You will apply knowledge and skills to demonstrate autonomy, authoritative judgment, adaptability, and ethical responsibility, and you will be prepared to lead within an organization in the role of practitioner and/or scholar.
Low Residency, Online Format
The educational leadership doctoral program was designed with the working professional in mind. As we value the strength of the cohort model, a one-week, on-campus session, in July, is required each year while you undertake coursework. Other than being on campus for that one week, all classes are held synchronously and asynchronously in an online format.
Each week, one of the two courses taken during the semester will meet virtually. Virtual classes will be scheduled on Saturdays a couple of times during the semester to allow for project-based collaboration between professors and students.
Complete the application form. No application fee.
Start your application process by completing the online application form. Be sure to complete your application by submitting all the required materials outlined in this section.
Graduate Admissions Essays
Once your application form is processed you will receive an email with your application portal login credentials. Once you login to your application portal you'll be able to upload your essays.
Applicants will be asked to write 2 statements:
In two to three double-spaced pages, please describe significant life experiences that have contributed to your interest in your field, your understanding of this field, your occupational objectives, and why you have chosen Springfield College.
Please develop a 3 to 5 page document addressing the following prompt: Identify a significant problem of practice faced in your work setting or community, including an analysis of why this is a problem and how it relates to equity and education. Please also address how this problem relates to your interest in pursuing a PhD in educational leadership.*
*The committee will be examining this writing sample with an eye toward how the candidate integrates relevant scholarly literature to support their statement.
Please include any college activities, out-of-school leadership experiences, work history, and community involvement to support your interest in or qualifications for graduate study. Once your application form is processed you will receive an email with your application portal login credentials. Once you login to your application portal you'll be able to upload your resume.
Letters of Recommendation
This program requires three letters of recommendation. Recommenders will receive an email when you submit your application and will be able to upload your letter to your application.
Upon review of all admissions materials, applicants being considered for admission will be interviewed (via Zoom) by two program faculty. We anticipate interviews will begin in March 2023.
This program requires a master's degree.
Official Transcripts from All Institutions Previously/Currently Attended
- An official transcript from each college/university you have attended is required.
- Transcripts must be in English. If the transcript is not in English you will be required to submit a professional credential evaluation completed by any member of the National Association of Credential Evaluation Services. In some cases, including if you plan to request coursework be transferred, a course-by-course translation is required. For this we recommend the World Education Services or Josef Silny & Associates, Inc.
- In order to be considered official, transcripts must be received directly from the original source, by email to email@example.com, or mailed to the college address:
Office of Graduate Admissions
263 Alden Street
Springfield, MA 01109
All international applicants from non-English speaking countries are required, in addition to the items listed above, to submit:
- Proof of English language proficiency by way of the TOEFL or IELTS. If your undergraduate degree was earned in the United States and you successfully completed College level English, we will consider English language proficiency met.
- Please note: Transcripts must be in English. If the transcript is not in English you will be required to submit a professional credential evaluation completed by any member of the National Association of Credential Evaluation Services. In some cases, including if you plan to request coursework be transferred, a course-by-course translation is required. For this we recommend the World Education Services or Josef Silny & Associates, Inc.
Our Associate Director of International Admissions Nicholas Venn can answer any questions you may have about enrolling in Springfield College as an international student. You may email him at firstname.lastname@example.org or via phone at (413) 748-3891.
To submit materials:
After submitting your online application form you will receive user login credentials to access your student application portal. From that portal, you will be able to upload your graduate admissions essay and your resume. Recommenders will receive an email when you submit your application and will be able to upload your letter to your application. In order to be considered official, transcripts must be received directly from the original source, by email to email@example.com, or mailed to the college address:
Office of Graduate Admissions
263 Alden Street
Springfield, MA 01109
This program consists of 59 credits. Coursework begins in the summer and concludes at the end of the third fall term. The qualifying paper proposal and qualifying paper you develop will serve as benchmarks, and successful completion allows you to advance to the dissertation proposal.
EDUC693: Leadership in a Diverse Society
EDUC637: Foundations of Multicultural Education
EDUC 638 Critical Theories
EDUC 655: Historical Context of Education in the United States
EDUC 632 Organization Development and Leadership in Education
RSCH 610 Foundations and Methods of Research
EDUC 618 Teaching and Learning for Democracies
RSCH 615 Qualitative Methods
EDUC 646 Qualifying Paper Proposal
RSCH 620 Stats 1
EDUC 619 Contemporary Issues in Education
EDUC 648 Qualifying Paper
EDUC 644 Financial Decision Making in Education
RSCH 712 Dissertation Proposal
RSCH 720 Stats II or Advanced Qualitative Methods
RSCH 735 Doctoral Dissertation
|Graduate Program Courses||$795 per credit|
|Approximate total cost (59 credits)||$46,905|
|Summer Residency Fee ($1,000/summer)*||$3,000|
All approximate costs above are based on 2022-23 academic year costs.
*The Summer Residency Fee does not include housing. It does include some meals.
We use nine competencies to serve as the foundation to guide your learning and scholarly pursuits. These competencies were developed to guide curriculum development and prepare leaders to advance equity and racial justice in the U.S. educational system.
- Identify one’s strengths and challenges as a leader and seek opportunities to develop skills.
- Nurture and advance an inclusive cohesive team and stakeholders to think strategically, critically, and creatively.
- Apply leadership theory and models.
- Take intelligent and ethically informed risks to create social change.
- Develop confidence and the capacity of individuals to promote equity in organizations.
Equity, Social Justice, and Inclusion
- Explain the systematic impact educational inequity has on society at large and develop strategies to create equity.
- Critically and systematically examine questions and problems of practice to generate equitable solutions.
- Use analytical and research methods appropriate to dismantling systems of oppression.
- Advocate for more equitable practice.
- Engage in consciousness-raising and lead by example in a way that allows others to learn and progress toward equity mindedness.
Historical Context of U.S. Educational Systems
- Describe the historical foundations of inequity in educational structures.
- Compare and contrast current issues with historical trends.
- Critique social and cultural issues and situate them in contemporary issues.
Teaching and Learning
- Apply pedagogy that educates diverse populations and creates an inclusive and just teaching and learning environment.
- Articulate how theoretical constructs influence learning and development.
Law, Policy, Governance
- Interpret how current laws and policies impact educational systems and promote or discourage inequity.
- Critically analyze state and federal laws and policy to dismantle inequities.
Administration and Organizational Resources
- Identify public and private educational funding sources.
- Critically analyze how the appropriation of resources affect equity.
- Examine the governance of educational systems.
- Develop a professional plan to keep knowledge and skills current.
- Present relevant information in a clear, organized manner, and convey essential information to appropriate audiences.
- Examine strengths and limits of research methodologies.
- Apply concepts, strategies, and techniques to conduct rigorous ethical research using multiple methodological approaches.
- Generate original knowledge and understanding to make a substantial contribution in leading the work to dismantle inequity in education.
- Connect with local and external resources to advance equity in education.
- Examine local and state context to create solutions for systemic educational issues.