Doctor of Philosophy in Educational Leadership

Doctor of Philosophy

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"I would like to extend my gratitude to professors and staff at WMU. Your sophisticated intellect, unbridled dedication to the field, and seemingly unending fountain of knowledge provided inspiration and motivation throughout the course of my study. It has been a privilege and an honor to study with and learn from you."Dr. Jill Van Hof

Upcoming Info Sessions for Educational

Leadership K12 Concentrations!

Program description

Due to the increasingly complex tasks including research and data analysis within all types of educational institutions, there is a demand for strong, transformational leaders.

Applying theory to practice is an overall theme for the Doctor of Philosophy in educational leadership, with the case-study approach to learning used extensively. In addition, a very integrated "professional inquiry, research, and dissertation core" has been developed to assist you in adding to your higher education knowledge base, and to ensure that students complete a Ph.D. rather than adding to the number of "all-but-dissertations" (ABD's) that exist in academia.

The EDLD concentrations require a minimum of 60 graduate credits, including 12 dissertation credits. If you are a working professional and able to take two classes per semester you can complete your doctoral work, including dissertation, in about 3.5 – 4 years.


Application information

The admissions deadline for students hoping to start the program Fall 2023 (or summer if requested) is January 15, 2023. The admissions application process is completely online. If you wish to be considered for department funding as a graduate assistant (GA or DGA), please complete the application by the stated deadline (

EDLD has permanently suspended the GRE requirement as an admission requirement. Be aware that there may be additional requirements during the admissions review to provide supplemental information about applicant's preparedness to be in a doctoral program.

Please review the following web pages for information about graduate/doctoral assistantships (GA): and If you have additional questions, contact the Interim Department Chair, Dr. David Szabla.

Program information

These are applicable for existing students in all concentrations:

For questions about the Ph.D. program, contact Dr. Donna Talbot.

EDLD faculty

EDLD faculty