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Best Doctorate in Education (Ed.D) Degrees in 2021

October 5, 2021 | Staff Writers

Doctorate in Education
Degree Finder
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The Doctorate in Education (Ed.D) degree is a terminal degree and provides professionals with the opportunity to expand their career opportunities by advancing into positions as post-secondary instructors, administrators or leaders in education. Several sources indicate the need for individuals to advance their education to have the best opportunities for an increased salary as well as the opportunity to work in the highest positions of education.

What is the Difference Between the Doctor of Education and Doctor of Philosophy in Education Degrees?

Understanding the difference between the Doctor of Education (EdD) and the Doctor of Philosophy (PhD) in Education helps individuals determine which terminal degree program is the right choice for their goals and professional direction.

Although both of the degrees are equal in level, they have defining qualities which can serve different purposes. Northeastern University describes the Doctor of Education degree (EdD) program as a degree for educators that want to pursue leadership roles in education. Candidates for the Doctorate in Education degree work in a variety of fields, including K-12 educations, at government or non-profit institutions, and the military, in addition to other workplace settings.

The Doctor of Philosophy (PhD) degree program prepares graduates for a role in research or teaching, particularly at the university level. Candidates for the degree conduct original research with the goal of inspiring change in their field or to inspire other professionals to make changes based on the results of the candidates’ work.

What are the Benefits of Earning a Doctor of Education Degree?

Earning a doctorate in education, whether offered in the traditional format or offered as an online doctorate in education, gives the graduate the opportunity to excel as an educational leader in the public or the private sector. Candidates have the opportunity to work in higher education, business, government, or human resources, an opportunity that is potentially not available to individuals with less than a doctoral degree.

There is a significant impact on the potential earnings when an individual decides to earn a doctorate degree in education. The Bureau of Labor Statistics lists the median weekly wages for an individual with a master’s degree in education at $1,497, and the median weekly earnings of an individual with a doctoral degree at $1,883. Post-secondary teachers make an average of $79,540 per year, while the BLS lists other education career wages for professionals with a doctoral degree at a median salary of $94,390 per year.

Students sometimes receive tuition reimbursement or some reduction in the cost of a doctorate in education from their employer. This is another benefit, and helps reduce the overall cost of the program.

Rank School Location
1University of West GeorgiaCarrollton, Georgia
2Valdosta State UniversityValdosta, Georgia
3University of WyomingLaramie, Wyoming
4Kennesaw State UniversityKennesaw, Georgia
5University of the CumberlandsWilliamsburg, Kentucky

These colleges and universities offer doctor of education degree programs, with some schools providing traditional degrees while others offer their program as a hybrid or online doctorate in education.

1

University of West Georgia

  • Carrollton, Georgia
  • Graduation Rate: 39%

Earn a Doctor of Education degree at the University of West Georgia, where the students chooses from the School Improvement concentration, the Professional Counseling and Supervision concentration, or the Higher Education Administration concentration. Each of the program concentrations are offered exclusively in an online format.

The Doctor of Education (Ed.D.) in Higher Education Administration option focuses on the application of applied knowledge through a process of continued practice and research, and addressing critical issues in higher education. The School Improvement concentration prepares graduates for a career focusing on the next generation of change and that initiates improvement in schools.

School Overview

Tuition: $241 per credit hour
Admissions requirements: Submit transcripts from accredited schools, submit letter of intent, and three letters of support, and writing sample
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2

Valdosta State University

  • Valdosta, Georgia
  • Graduation Rate: 36%

The Doctor of Education in Adult and Career Education program at Valdosta State University provides advanced, professional learning opportunities for individuals that are pursuing careers in teaching and leadership of adult and career education and closely related educational fields.

Students have the opportunity to choose from three specialization tracks, including Workforce Education, Career and Technical Education and Business Education and Information Technology.

School Overview

Tuition: $254 per credit hour
Admissions requirements: Submit transcripts verifying completion of master’s degree from regionally accredited school, with minimum 3.5 GPA, submit GRE or MAT scores, resume, letters of recommendation
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3

University of Wyoming

  • Laramie, Wyoming
  • Graduation Rate: 54%

The University of Wyoming offers the Doctor of Education (EdD) degree with several concentration options, including the Curriculum and Instruction option. Students engage in the applied program that focuses on training and experiences in areas such as problem-based research, along with curriculum and field experiences that students can customize to their personal educational or professional goals.

School Overview

Tuition: $271 per credit hour
Admissions requirements: Submit application with transcripts from previous colleges, application with fee, and letters of recommendation
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4

Kennesaw State University

  • Kennesaw, Georgia
  • Graduation Rate: 41%

Kennesaw State University offers five concentrations in its Doctor of Education (EdD) program with the Doctor of Education in Instructional Technology offered in an online format. The other programs, such as the Doctor of Education in Teacher Leadership, prepares teachers to maintain the role as classroom teacher while also building a school culture of continual improvement.

Graduates have the skills to mentor and coach other teachers, to analyze data and improve learning through data-informed decision-making, and to engage in instructional leadership.

School Overview

Tuition: $296 per credit hour
Admissions requirements: Submit application with non-refundable fee, along with transcripts from all previous schools demonstrating a minimum 2.75 GPA
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5

University of the Cumberlands

  • Williamsburg, Kentucky
  • Graduation Rate: 78%

The online Doctor of Education – Doctoral of Educational Leadership program at the University of the Cumberlands features several benefits. The program is offered completely online, and can be completed in less than three years. It is also considered one of the most affordable Doctorate of Education programs in the nation.

Educators learn to make valuable and cutting-edge contributions across a variety of academic leadership roles and settings. The program features 11 concentrations, allowing students to tailor their degree to their interests.

School Overview

Tuition: $375 per credit hour
Admissions requirements: Submit official transcripts from all universities previously attended, demonstrate a minimum 3.5 GPA in master’s degree program
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6

University of Arkansas

  • Fayetteville, Arkansas
  • Graduation Rate: 64%

The Online Doctor of Education in Educational Leadership program at the University of Arkansas provides students with the preparation that they need to pursue a career as a principal or other building-level administrator or supervisor in private or public schools. Although the coursework is delivered in an online format, there is one intensive weekend seminar per semester.

School Overview

Tuition: $430.69 per credit hour
Admissions requirements: Submit application to both the University of Arkansas Graduate School and application specifically to the program, submit all official transcripts, copy of teaching license
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7

Florida State University

  • Tallahassee, Florida
  • Graduation Rate: 80%

The Educational Leadership and Administration Doctor of Education program at Florida State University develop high-performing leadership skills and improvement of public and private educational systems. Students gain the theoretical skills and professional knowledge to focus on practical application of content and program objectives. The online program also provides graduates with skills in applied research.

School Overview

Tuition: $479.32 per credit hour
Admissions requirements: Proof of graduate degree with at least 3.5 GPA, GRE test scores, transcripts from prior institutions, research statement
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8

North Greenville University

  • Tigerville, South Carolina
  • Graduation Rate: 58%

The Doctor of Education degree at North Greenville University provides students with the knowledge and skills needed to attain leadership positions in either a K-12 or higher education setting. The program focuses on developing trained and skilled educational leaders that make a difference by gaining the skillset to meet both current and future leadership challenges in education. Some other skills learned while in the program include applied research, social intelligence and systems thinking.

School Overview

Tuition: $495 per credit hour
Admissions requirements: Hold a master’s degree from an accredited university with at least 3.0 GPA, submit test scores for the GRE or MAT exam, letters of recommendation
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9

University of Louisiana Monroe

  • Monroe, Louisiana
  • Graduation Rate: 46%

Earn a Doctor of Education (EdD) degree at the University of Louisiana Monroe and learn to relate theoretical foundations to curricular and instructional issues that professionals face in real-world settings. Learn the applicable quantitative and qualitative methods and explore the foundations of education.

Students have the opportunity to complete the program via eight-week terms over a period of two years. There are five start dates each year.

School Overview

Tuition: $500 per credit hour
Admissions requirements: Must submit previous transcripts showing completion of a master’s degree in any discipline, minimum GPA of 3.25, and GRE score minimum of 292
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10

Arizona State University

  • Tempe, Arizona
  • Graduation Rate: 67%

The Arizona State University Online Doctor of Education in Leadership and Innovation is designed for current educator-leaders that want to lead the effort for change and to implement innovation in their profession. Students also focus on ‘research in action,’ and learn to improve critical thinking skills, and problems in the practice of their preferred concentration areas. The concentrations offered are Pre-Kindergarten-Grade 12 Change Leadership, Higher Education Change Leadership and Systems, Professional, and Re-Imagined Change Leadership.

School Overview

Tuition: $543 per credit hour
Admissions requirements: Must have completed the last 60 bachelor’s degree or overall master’s degree with minimum 3.0 GPA, submit three letters of recommendation, and official transcripts
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11

Murray State University

  • Murray, Kentucky
  • Graduation Rate: 48%

The Murray State University online Doctor of Education in P-20 and Community Leadership is one of the first online doctorate in education programs ‘to provide an innovative and integrated P-20 approach to educational leadership across the continuum.’ Students have the benefit of no classroom components required and the opportunity to connect to virtual classrooms.

The university offers several benefits to students including recently lowered tuition, and the possibility of receiving credit for prior learning in the workplace. There are also special military discounts available.

School Overview

Tuition: $544 per credit hour
Admissions requirements: Submission of GRE or GMAT report, copy of valid teaching license if applicable
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12

Oregon State University

  • Corvallis, Oregon
  • Graduation Rate: 63%

The Oregon State University Doctor of Education program is guided by the principle that leadership can be learned and enhanced, and is delivered in an online format and a part-time hybrid format. Designed for students that want to develop practitioner knowledge, apply research to practice, and demonstrate a commitment to the mission of higher education.

School Overview

Tuition: $590 per credit hour
Admissions requirements: Must hold master’s degree in a related field and minimum of three years of full-time professional experience in a higher education organization or field related to teaching, learning and leadership.
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13

University of Memphis

  • Memphis, Tennessee
  • Graduation Rate: 41%

Enjoy the flexibility of the online University of Memphis Global Doctorate of Education in Higher and Adult Education: Higher Education Concentration. The program curriculum is designed for professionals seeking doctoral-level preparation that is primarily for mid-level and senior-level administrative positions in higher education institutions or agencies.

School Overview

Tuition: $647 per credit hour
Admissions requirements: Use electronic admissions submission form, submit all transcripts and required test scores
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14

University of Virginia

  • Charlottesville, Virginia
  • Graduation Rate: 94%

The Curry School of Education and Human Development Doctor of Education program prepares scholars-practitioners to become highly-qualified to become educational leaders at their organizations, and to work in a variety of settings.

The program focuses on reflecting on professional practices, bridging practice and research and expanding professional knowledge.

School Overview

Tuition: $705 per credit hour
Admissions requirements: Submission of GRE scores within five years of application, submit goal statement, submit transcripts from previous institutions
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15

Allen College

  • Waterloo, Iowa
  • Graduation Rate: 89%

The Allen College Doctor of Education in Health Professions Education program is offered with the purpose of guiding students through the process of transitioning from practitioner to educator, and to support those individuals that want to become experts in education and leadership roles. The program prepares students for the leadership and educator roles in the health sciences. The degree program also prepares graduates to have a role in policy formation, problem-solving, teaching, and service.

School Overview

Tuition: $865 per credit hour
Admission requirements: Holds a master’s or higher educational degree with a minimum 3.0 GPA, completion of statistics course
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16

Northeastern University

  • Boston, Massachusetts
  • Graduation Rate: 84%

Northeastern University offers a Doctor of Education which is fully online, with professional learning communities (Learning online, meet occasionally in person) available in Charlotte and Seattle. There are three concentrations, Higher Education Administration, Organizational Leadership Studies and Curriculum, Teaching, Learning and Leadership.

School Overview

Tuition: $897 per credit hour
Admissions requirements: Three years work experience in related field, two professional recommendations, academic transcripts submission
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17

Azusa Pacific University

  • Azusa, California
  • Graduation Rate: 75%

Azusa Pacific University challenges prospective professionals enrolling in the Doctor of Education in Higher Education Leadership program to ‘help shape the future of higher education.’ Students that are highly motivated learn to serve as transformational leaders, and have opportunities to help offer new directions in higher education through cutting edge developments in the profession. Second year students participate in an immersion experience and travel to London, England with the purpose of exploring the constantly changing nature of higher education.

The university consistently ranks among top-rated schools in the U.S. and is a yellow ribbon military friendly school.

School Overview

Tuition: $1,127 per credit hour
Admissions requirements: Must possess several years working experience in a college or university setting, a master’s degree in higher education or a related field, recommendation letters
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Methodology

We researched accredited Doctor of Education programs across the United States and narrowed our list based on the tuition rate. Then tuition rate is the cost of in-state tuition for one credit hour of study. We also included admission requirements for each school.

Do you need to update the information for your school? Please feel free to contact us.

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BestValueSchools.org is an advertising-supported site. Featured or trusted partner programs and all school search, finder, or match results are for schools that compensate us. This compensation does not influence our school rankings, resource guides, or other editorially-independent information published on this site.
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