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EdD FAQ

Program Questions

  • Do I have to be in the field of education to enter the EdD program?

    You do not have to work in an educational setting to join the EdD program. The degree is ideal for educators, educational administrators and organizational trainers, such as HR specialists and corporate trainers. Regardless of professional background, you are required to have at least five years of administrative and/or leadership experience.

  • How do I prepare my writing skills for the EdD program?

    We will have already have done a preliminary assessment of your writing skills as a part of the admissions process, but it is important to note that writing skills are developed over a very long period of time, so there is little that can be done in the short term to "become a writer."

    One of the first courses in the EdD program will be Academic Writing, which will further assess your writing skills, especially as they pertain to writing in an academic format, and provide recommendations for how to address any substantial shortcomings. In addition, students have access to free tutoring services for those requiring additional help.

  • What can I do/How can I progress in my career with an EdD?

    There are many districts (mostly mid-size to larger ones) that require their superintendent and/or executive team (e.g., curriculum director, finance manager, etc.) to possess a terminal degree. Additionally, full-time positions in higher education often require a doctorate. Other positions, such as those found in consulting, carry more weight and prestige with the terminal degree. Just two percent of people have terminal degrees, making the EdD a valuable way to stand out in the marketplace.

    Perhaps most importantly, you will be better equipped to empower your students, coworkers, subordinates and trainees to achieve great things.

  • In the Educational Leadership specialization, how do you prepare students to get their Texas Superintendent Certification?

    There are five courses embedded in the specialization that were specifically designed around Texas State Superintendent standards to prepare an administrator for the TeXes Superintendent Exam. You will not have to take any additional courses.

  • What is the difference between an EdD and a PhD?

    An EdD is typically a practitioner’s degree for educators who will actually work in the field of K-12 education or those who are professional corporate trainers.

    EdD courses are most often taught by those with current/former principal or superintendent experience. The PhD is more theoretical in scope and is better suited to someone who will pursue research or higher education as a career. Research courses are usually more predominant and advanced in PhD programs.

  • What happens if I am in the Educational Leadership specialization and I leave my job during the program?

    If you leave your job during the program (and it is a school job), you will still have the responsibility of securing entry into a district for your practicum.

  • How will we be graded? What happens if I fail a class?

    Grades will be determined based on very explicit criteria outlined for each course, and grades will be updated on a regular basis in Blackboard, so you should know where you stand at any point in the course.

    Before failing a course, struggling students should be in regular contact with their professors to remedy any learning deficiencies and overcome any procedural misunderstandings.

    Should a student fail a course, a decision will have to be made, depending on the course in question, whether the student can continue with the course sequence and pick up the failed course the next time it is offered. Any course taken out of sequence is likely to delay completion of the program due to the way courses are scheduled.

  • What is the expected workload?

    This is a doctoral-level program designed for working professionals. We understand that students have families and a day job. We also understand that students process material differently. It is difficult to say how many hours will be required for class preparation, outside readings, research and follow-up reporting.

    Some courses will demand more time than other courses for students to fully comprehend the material and complete the assignments. Students will definitely need to budget time and reconsider some of life's priorities throughout the program.

  • What if I have to take a semester off for personal, family, health, etc.?

    Anyone who has to miss a semester of the program due to personal situations will have to sit out until that point in the next cohort advances, but you can pick up where you left off.

  • Is there a time limit to finish the program? If it takes me longer than a year to write my dissertation, how long do I have?

    There is a limit of six years to complete the entire program, including coursework, practicum and either the culminating research-based inquiry of practice (CRIP) or dissertation.

    You will spend the first two years completing coursework, providing you with four years to complete your practicum and CRIP/dissertation, although it is not expected to take you that long.

  • Do Educational Leadership students have to work directly with the superintendent of their district for practicum, or can they work with another superintendent?

    Students may work with any central office administrator who is certified as a superintendent. The work must reflect the standards established by the State of Texas.

Program Cost

  • How much will books cost? What other educational materials will I need?

    Instructions (PDF) for signing up for the Password Reset Service

  • What are Concordia's password requirements and recommendations?

    You are automatically enrolled in the optional Tornado Textbooks program, which means less expense for you! A laptop computer will also be of great use during the program.

Admissions Questions

  • What if I have only taught for 3-4 years? Can I apply my future teaching experience that I will get during the program to the application?

    The requirement is a combination of five years experience, at least part of which has been in a leadership capacity, so three to four years teaching experience would work only if you have an additional year or two of administrative work.

  • What is a "service record"?

    A service record is the official employment record a school keeps on its employees. This is the document that records the years of service upon which an employer determines compensation. It's also used to determine Teacher Retirement eligibility.

  • What can I tell my employer/supervisor who is writing the letter of support about the program?

    A letter from the supervisor should have the supervisor acknowledge that the applicant is entering into an online doctoral program with two residencies, which will require a significant time commitment.

    Further, the supervisor understands that during the practicum, the supervisor will allow the candidate to expand his or her job duties to log at least 200 hours over the eight months of practicum within the standards as required. Employers can be given a brochure that describes the program.

  • I am not currently working at a school. Will this affect my admission eligibility? Will I need to be employed at a school during the program?

    You do not have to be employed at a school to be in the program, but you will have to have a relationship with a district that will allow you to conduct your 200-hour practicum with them.

  • Can I transfer credit in from another EdD/PhD program? If so, what classes will transfer? Is there a maximum amount of credits? If I can transfer classes, what information do I need to submit?

    A student can transfer in a maximum of six credit hours, which will be evaluated on a case-by-case basis.

  • Do I have to get my Texas Superintendent Certification if I am in the Educational Leadership specialization? What if I already have it?

    You do not have to obtain Texas Superintendent Certification to go through the Educational Leadership specialty, but you will have to take the same courses since they focus on leadership skills needed by all school administrators.