Columbus State University Print Logo



Doctor of Education
Curriculum and Leadership

College of Education and Health Professsions

Department of Counseling, Foundations, and Leadership

Program Description

With the present climate of accountability, there is a significant demand for educators among administrative ranks and in the classroom who have a high degree of expertise in school improvement, research, and professional learning. The development of professional educators with the research skills necessary to improve student achievement in schools is critical given the need for leadership frameworks, curriculum models, and instructional practices that are supported by research. The Ed.D. program develops educators with the skills to meet these demands.

Classes in the 63-credit hour program are intended for classroom educators, school administrators, district personnel and other individuals seeking professional expertise in leadership.

This program is delivered in a cohort model in which students work together through their required coursework in face-to-face or hybrid classes. Some approved electives may be offered online.

Educator Preparation at Columbus State University is accredited by the National Council for Accreditation of Teacher Education (NCATE).

The Ed.D. program is approved by the Georgia Professional Standards Commission.

Additional program information can be found on the CSU Department of Counseling, Foundations, and Leadership website.

Career Opportunities

With a Doctorate in Curriculum and Leadership, you obtain a more competitive degree for job positions in education. Careers such as teacher leaders, curriculum leaders in schools or districts, curriculum specialists, assistant school principals, school principals, school district superintendents are all available to doctorate degree holders. You have a higher level resume with a doctorate degree in all of these careers, but with careers such as school district superintendents it is almost required to have a doctorate level degree. Therefore, this is the right time to further your degree.

Admission Requirements

Admissions decisions are based on a holistic combination of criteria, including the interview, writing assessment, recommendations, professional experiences, academic transcripts, and GRE scores. 

  • Applicant must hold at least a master’s degree from an accredited United States institution, or the equivalent from an international institution.

  • Good academic standing at previous institution(s).

  • Cumulative GPA of at least 3.5 on all graduate course work at an accredited United States institution in fulfillment of the requirement for a graduate degree and post-baccalaureate coursework.

  • Official Graduate Record Exam (GRE) scores within the last 5 years.  Preferred minimum scores include a combined total of 297 for the general portion (Quantitative Reasoning and Verbal Reasoning) and 3.5 for the Analytical Writing component.

  • Four (4) years of experience in a school setting or in a leadership role in the private sector.

  • Background check to verify no criminal record or discharge from the armed services that would prevent recommendation for related teacher, counseling, or leadership certifications.

  • Successful completion of interview and timed writing assessment.

  • For international students, additional criteria may be required.  See International Graduate Admissions for more details.

Learning Outcomes

Graduates will:

  • Develop a high degree of expertise in school improvement, research, and professional learning.
  • Develop and implement leadership frameworks, curriculum models, and instructional practices that are supported by research.
  • Develop research models similar to those implemented to test the efficacy of specific treatments in the field of medicine.
  • Identify problems in the schools, employ research strategies, analyze data, and make appropriate program revisions that positively impact student learning and achievement.
  • Identify practices, rigorously test those practices, and ascertain best practice to implement in a specific environment.

Additional Program Requirements

Additional Program Requirements

  • Completion of all required coursework (minimum of 63 semester hours) with a 3.25 GPA and no more than one grade of C applying toward the degree
  • Completion of 9 credit hours of EDUF 8999 Dissertation
  • Completion of dissertation
  • Successful defense of dissertation
  • Acceptance of dissertation by the COEHP Office of Graduate Studies
  • Residency of a minimum of 51 semester hours
  • Students must be continuously enrolled in dissertation hours until completion of the dissertation.

Program Of Study

RESEARCH Required Hours: 15
EDUF 8117 Qualitative Research Methods
EDUF 8125 Mixed Methods Research in Education
EDUF 8126 Introduction to Statistical Methods in Education
EDUF 8127 Quantitative Experimental Research
EDUL 8715 Doctoral Seminar in Curriculum and Leadership

Choose one area of specialization: Curriculum, Educational Leadership, or Higher Education

SPECIALIZATION Curriculum Required Hours: 24
EDUF 8112 Curriculum Design and Evaluation
EDCI 7157 Curriculum Development and Reform
EDCI 8115 Diversity in Education 
EDCI 8116 Trends and Issues in Curriculum Studies
EDCI 8117 Professional Development and Learning
EDCI 8157 Quality Assessment and Evaluation
EDCI 8555 Selected Topics in Education
EDUL 8108 Applications of Neurological Research to Student Learning

SPECIALIZATION Educational Leadership Required Hours: 24
EDUL 8101 Management of Educational Organizations
EDUL 8102 Leading for Change
EDUL 8104 Supervision of Teaching and Learning
EDUL 8105 Leadership Theory
EDUL 8115 Educational Policy and Ethics
EDUL 8126 Politics of Education
EDUL 8129 System Level Finance
EDUL 8128 Educational Facilities, Development and Implementation

SPECIALIZATION Higher Education Administration Required Hours: 24
EDHE 8101 Introduction to Higher Education
EDHE 8102 Academic Affairs
EDHE 8103 Finance and Administrative Affairs
EDHE 8110 Policy and Politics of Higher Education
EDHE 8112 Higher Education Student Services
EDHE 8123 Research in Higher Education
EDHE 8125 Educational Evaluation
EDHE 8720 Current Issues in Higher Education

DISSERTATION Required Hours: 12
EDUF 8000 Dissertation Defense
EDUF 8129 Developing the Dissertation Prospectus
EDUF 8999 Dissertation
EDUF 8999 Dissertation
EDUF 8999 Dissertation

ELECTIVES Required Hours: 12 
12 approved semester hours in discipline as approved by advisor

Total Required Hours: 63