Educational Leadership (EdD)

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The Doctor of Education (Ed.D.) in Educational Leadership program is UTRGV's commitment to provide educational leaders with the knowledge and skills to make educational institutions better places for children, youth, and adults of all ages. The program leads to a Doctor of Education degree in Educational Leadership emphasizing preparation for careers in a variety of educational settings: K-12, community college, or university. The program is uniquely oriented toward the application of theory and knowledge derived from researching practical problems. Special focus is placed on preparing educational leaders for the Rio Grande Valley.

The educational objectives of the program are:

  • To  prepare  professional  individuals  capable  of  achieving  the highest levels of educational competence in daily practice.
  • To prepare outstanding academic and administrative leaders for educational agencies at the campus, district, higher education institution, county, regional, state and national levels, with emphasis on leadership skills required to educate minorities, particularly Hispanics.
  • To  provide  deeper  understanding  of  the  legal,  financial  and operational demands on the professional educator, as well as adequate historical and contemporary contexts that influence their role.
  • To  provide  an  understanding  of  the  theories  and  research methodologies that illuminate the significant role of the professional education practitioner.
  • To  provide  professional  educators  with  problem  solving  and applied research skills.
  • To  offer  access  to  a  doctoral-level  program  in  educational leadership to all Rio Grande Valley citizens who have the qualifications and motivation to pursue it.
  • To  assist  in  the  formation  of  professionals  who  will  serve  in administrative and policy positions in order to enhance the educational and economic opportunities of persons who need the most development of their human potential.
  • To provide uniquely qualified leadership, teaching and research skills required to meet the special needs of the culturally diverse student population in this area.

Application Letter/Packet

  • Admission Requirements

    Step #1: Submit a UTRGV Graduate Application at www.utrgv.edu/gradapply. The university application fee of $85 ($100 for International Applicants) can be paid online by credit card or electronic check (in the online application). All application fees are nonrefundable.

    Step #2: Request your official transcripts to be sent electronically to gradapps@utrgv.edu or mailed to:

    The University of Texas Rio Grande Valley
    The Graduate College
    Marialice Shary Shivers Bldg. 1.158
    1201 W. University Drive
    Edinburg, TX 78539-2999

     
    *Please Note: If you are a graduate of UTPA, UTB/TSC, or UTRGV you do not need to request an official transcript to be sent to the Graduate College.

    Review and submit all Program Requirements:

    • Earned master's degree from an accredited institution in a field related to Education with a minimum graduate GPA of 3.0.
    • Official transcripts from each institution attended (must be submitted directly to UTRGV).
    • Submission  of  personal  statement,  maximum  of  5  pages  double- spaced, including the following headings: Purpose of Pursuing an Ed.D. in Educational Leadership; Description of Professional Goals; and Commitment and Dedication.
    • Submission of 3 letters of recommendation from academic and/or professional sources.
    • Submission     of     resume     showing     professional     presentations, publications, grants, recognitions (e.g., honors and awards for leadership, teaching, academics), 5 years full-time leadership, supervisory experiences or classroom experience(college/university level, school/district, business, military, regional, state-level, international, other) leadership activity in community organizations, professional associations, or community service.
    • Submission of writing sample following the guideline provided by the program.
    • Participation of finalists in the Program’s Assessment Center, a daylong session to evaluate the applicant’s verbal, written, and analytical skills.

    Additional requirements for domestic applicants who attended foreign universities:

    • TOEFL or IELTS Language Proficiency Test with minimum scores: 550 on paper-based, 213 on computer based, or 79 on Internet-based for the TOEFL; 6.5 for the IELTS. TOEFL and IELTS scores are valid for 2 years. For additional information, visit the Additional Documents for Domestic Applicants who Attend Foreign Universities section of our website.
    • Certified English translation of educational records.

    Additional requirements for international applicants:

    • TOEFL or IELTS Language Proficiency Test with minimum scores: 550 on paper-based, 213 on computer based, or 79 on Internet-based for the TOEFL; 6.5 for the IELTS. For additional information, visit the English Proficiency Exam section of our website.
    • Certified English translation of educational records.
    • Financial   Documentation  showing sufficient funds to cover all expenses (living and academic) for the first year of study. For additional information, visit the Financial Documentation section of our website.
    • Immigration  documents, including a current copy of your valid passport. For additional information, visit the Immigration Documents section of our website.

    UPDATE ON INTERNATIONAL ADMISSIONS FROM U.S. IMMIGRATION AND CUSTOMS ENFORCEMENT:

    • SEVP regulations prohibit the issuance of a Form I-20 based on conditional admission, effective July 13, 2016. University officials can only issue a Form I-20 when students have met all standards for admission for the program of study listed on the Form I-20. These standards for admission include any English proficiency requirements.

  • Program Contact

    Program Coordinator: Dr. Roberto A. Peña

    Phone: (956) 665-7444

    Office: Edinburg Campus, EDUC 1.610

    E-mail: roberto.pena@utrgv.edu 

  • Deadlines

    Fall Spring Summer I Summer II
    Application Deadline: February 1 January 4 N/A N/A
  • Course Requirements

    Higher Education Administration Concentration
     
    Research Component Required Courses 12
    EDRE 8300: Introduction to Research Methods 3
    EDRE 8301: Qualitative Research 3
    EDRE 8302: Quantitative Research 3
     
    Choose 3 hours from the following:
    EDRE 8303: Advanced Qualitative Research 3
    EDRE 8304: Advanced Quantitative Research 3
    EDRE 8305: Program Evaluation 3
    EDRE 8306: Multivariate Educational Research 3
    EDRE 8307: Selected Topics in Research 3
     
    Core Courses 21
    EDUL 8301: Leadership and Organizational Behavior 3
    EDUL 8302: Theories of Learning and Instruction 3
    EDUL 8303: Educational Politics and Policy 3
    EDUL 8304: Social and Cultural Contexts of Education 3
    EDUL 8306: Ethics and Values in Educational Administration 3
    EDUL 8307: Organizational Theory in Education 3
    EDUL 8330: Education Law Seminar 3
    OR
    EDUL 8340: Higher Education Law 3
     
    Designated Electives 6
    Choose from the following:
    EDUL 8305: Economics of Education 3
    EDUL 8308: History of Education 3
    EDUL 8336: Problems in Education 3
    EDUL 8381: Problems in Organization and Administration of Public Schools 3
     
    Resource and Field Based Courses 18
    EDUL 8350: Doctoral Internship 3
     
    Choose 15 hours from the following:
    EDUL 8334: Topical Seminar (may be repeated) 3
    EDUL 8336: Problems in Education (may be repeated) 3
    EDUL 8340: Higher Education Law 3
    EDUL 8341: Student Affairs in Higher Education 3
    EDUL 8342: Policy, Politics, and Governance in Higher Education 3
    EDUL 8343: Higher Education Finance 3
    EDUL 8344: The American Community College 3
     
    Free Electives 6
    Courses at the 6000, 7000, and 8000 level, approved by advisor
     
    Dissertation 6
    EDUL 8390: Dissertation Proposal Development 3
    EDUL 8395: Dissertation Research and Writing 3
     
    Capstone Requirement
    Written Comprehensive Exam
    Dissertation Proposal Defense
    Dissertation Defense
     
    Total graduate hours required for degree: 69
     
    Needs-Based Concentration
     
    Research Courses 12
    EDRE 8300: Introduction to Research Methods 3
    EDRE 8301: Qualitative Research 3
    EDRE 8302: Quantitative Research 3
     
    Choose 3 hours from the following:
    EDRE 8303: Advanced Qualitative Research 3
    EDRE 8304: Advanced Quantitative Research 3
    EDRE 8305: Program Evaluation 3
    EDRE 8306: Multivariate Educational Research 3
    EDRE 8307: Selected Topics in Research 3
     
    Core Courses 21
    EDUL 8301: Leadership and Organizational Behavior 3
    EDUL 8302: Theories of Learning and Instruction 3
    EDUL 8303: Educational Politics and Policy 3
    EDUL 8304: Social and Cultural Contexts of Education 3
    EDUL 8306: Ethics and Values in Educational Administration 3
    EDUL 8307: Organizational Theory in Education 3
    EDUL 8330: Education Law Seminar 3
     
    Designated Electives 6
    Choose from the following:
    EDUL 8305: Economics of Education 3
    EDUL 8308: History of Education 3
    EDUL 8336: Problems in Education 3
    EDUL 8381: Problems in Organization and Administration of Public Schools 3
     
    Resource and Field Based Courses 18
    EDUL 8350: Doctoral Internship 3
    Courses at the 6000, 7000, and 8000 level, approved by advisor 15
     
    Free Electives 6
    Courses at the 6000, 7000, and 8000 level, approved by advisor
     
    Dissertation 6
    EDUL 8390: Dissertation Proposal Development 3
    EDUL 8395: Dissertation Research and Writing 3
     
    Capstone Requirement
    Written Comprehensive Exam
    Dissertation Proposal Defense
    Dissertation Defense
     
    Total graduate hours required for degree: 69
     
    Course Descriptions

    EDRE 8300: Introduction to Research Methods               [3‐0]

    This course introduces the research process, and focuses on the various quantitative, qualitative and mixed methods inquiry strategies including the epistemological differences between these approaches. Attention is given to formulating problem statements, posing research questions and hypotheses, and devising appropriate research designs.


    EDRE 8301: Qualitative Research              [3‐0]

    An examination of qualitative research methods including ethnography, case studies, grounded theory, narrative and other qualitative inquiries applied to education is the focus of this course.

    Prerequisite: EDRE 8300.


    EDRE 8302: Quantitative Research              [3‐0]

    An examination of quantitative research methods including descriptive, experimental, correlational and other inquiries. Strength, weaknesses, and appropriate uses of quantitative methods of inquiry will be stressed.

    Prerequisite: EDRE 8300.


    EDRE 8303: Advanced Qualitative Research              [3‐0]

    The purpose of advanced qualitative research is to develop a deeper understanding of qualitative designs, data collection, and data analysis.

    Prerequisite: EDRE 8300 and EDRE 8301.


    EDRE 8304: Advanced Quantitative Research              [3‐0]

    The purpose of advanced quantitative research is to develop a deeper understanding of quantitative designs, data collection, and data analysis.

    Prerequisite: EDRE 8300 and EDRE 8302.


    EDRE 8305: Program Evaluation              [3‐0]

    Methods related to planning and implementing evaluation of educational programs, including formative and summative evaluations are the focus of this course. National standards are examined for assessing the quality of evaluations relative to utility, feasibility, propriety, and accuracy.

    Prerequisite: EDRE 8300, EDRE 8301, and EDRE 8302.


    EDRE 8306: Multivariate Educational Research              [3‐0]

    The content of this course will include introduction to exploratory and confirmatory factor analysis; principal component theory; number of factor extracted; path analysis; canonial analysis; and analysis of covariance structures.

    Prerequisite: EDRE 8300, EDRE 8302 and EDRE 8304.


    EDRE 8307: Selected Topics in Research              [3‐0]

    Group and individual projects in research design and methodologies, and research execution in response to student needs and interests, and faculty expertise. Course may be repeated for credit.

    Prerequisite: EDRE 8300, EDRE 8301, and EDRE 8302.


    EDRE 8308: Proposal Writing and Conceptual Framework Development              [3‐0]

    This course is designed to empower students in their dissertation research endeavors through developing a research proposal. Emphasis will be on constructing a problem statement, designing research questions, reviewing and identifying theories and frameworks to be used with research, reviewing literature, and identifying methodologies in which to approach their research problem. The class activities relate to planning and conducting research, with an emphasis on developing a draft document of a three‐chapter proposal.

    Prerequisite: EDRE 8300, EDRE 8301, and EDRE 8302.


    EDUL 8190: Dissertation Proposal Development              [1‐0]

    Students will develop and defend a dissertation proposal before his or her committee. Students must be enrolled in a 3‐credit hour dissertation proposal development course at the time of a proposal defense.

    Prerequisite: Pass written comprehensive exam.


    EDUL 8195: Dissertation Research and Writing              [1‐0]

    Students will submit an application to conduct research to the University of Texas Rio Grande Valley Institutional Review Board and secure permission to conduct research prior to beginning any data collection, if applicable. Students must be enrolled in a 3‐credit hour dissertation research and writing course at the time of a dissertation defense.

    Prerequisite: Successful dissertation proposal defense, EDUL 8390.


    EDUL 8300: Scholarly Writing              [3‐0]

    This course will provide students with the skills and knowledge to write a literature review, a scholarly paper, and to organize a research proposal through conceptualization, design and writing that includes the major components of a research plan. Students will enhance their researcher capacity and their ability to critically analyze research‐based publications, proposals, reports and reviews of literature


    EDUL 8301: Leadership and Organizational Behavior              [3‐0]

    Application of theories of organization to the problems of educational institutions. Subjects such as motivation, work and careers, power and influence, communication and perceptions, group dynamics, work design and organizational control considered from the perspective of the leader and decisionmaker.


    EDUL 8302: Theories of Learning and Instruction              [3‐0]

    Examination of various theories of learning and instruction and their impact on current teaching practices. Instructional leadership will receive emphasis.


    EDUL 8303: Educational Politics and Policy              [3‐0]

    Survey of theoretical and empirical literature related to educational politics and policy, including political systems theory, intergovernmental relations, power and conflict, community relations and intergroup theory, and policies dealing with equity, quality, efficiency and choice.


    EDUL 8304: Social and Cultural Contexts of Education              [3‐0]

    The relationship of contemporary educational institutions, both public school and higher education, to their social setting.


    EDUL 8305: Economics of Education              [3‐0]

    Survey of theoretical and empirical literature related to the economic context of educational institutions, including scarcity, income determination, expenditures, resource allocation and perspectives on progressivity and economic development.


    EDUL 8306: Ethics and Values in Educational Administration              [3‐0]

    Examination, from the point of view of various ethical systems, of issues of equity, distributive justice, codes of ethics in educational professions, treatment of students and other issues that face administrators of educational systems. Designed to sensitize prospective educational leaders to the ethical content of educational decisions.


    EDUL 8307: Organizational Theory in Education              [3‐0]

    Application of theories of organization to problems of educational institutions; designed to develop diagnostic skills necessary for successful administration of complex educational enterprises.


    EDUL 8308: History of Education              [3‐0]

    The development of American education, formal and informal, from colonial times until the present. Areas of emphasis include the historical influences on educational development, the issues of each time period and current trends.


    EDUL 8330: Education Law Seminar              [3‐0]

    Analysis of legal problems in education, sources of law and the methods of legal research.


    EDUL 8334: Topical Seminar              [3‐0]

    Topics of interest in educational leadership or new courses in development can be offered under this course number. May be repeated for credit when the topics vary.


    EDUL 8336: Problems in Education              [3‐0]

    Major emphasis on current innovations in education. Students will conduct research related to selected problems, including action research, and working with educational determinants, new education programs, classroom teachers and/or persons in the community in order to improve the educational program. Credit may be applied toward the graduate programs in education when the appropriate problem is chosen by the student. This course may be repeated once for credit.


    EDUL 8340: Higher Education Law              [3‐0]

    An overview of historic and contemporary influences of the United States and state constitutions, federal and state statutes, case law and agency regulations that impact higher education institutions and their administrators, faculties and students.


    EDUL 8341: Student Affairs in Higher Education              [3‐0]

    Student affairs in higher education is a study of the professional foundations and conceptual models for student affairs administration, programs, and services in community colleges and four‐year institutions. Also included will be the development of higher education administrative skills, including those of particular relevance to student affairs.


    EDUL 8342: Policy, Politics, and Governance in Higher Education              [3‐0]

    This course is an advanced study of problems, issues and trends related to governance, organization and control of higher educational institutions.


    EDUL 8343: Higher Education Finance              [3‐0]

    Higher Education Finance is a study of contemporary policies and practices in the finance of American higher education. The interpretation and uses of financial data in the administration of institutions; sources and methods of securing funds; budget processes; and policies and issues regarding the finance of higher education are some of the topics considered.


    EDUL 8344: The American Community College              [3‐0]

    The American Community College is a study of the institutional components of the community college including a review of history, purposes, clientele, organization, finance, programs, and societal functions. Current issues facing community colleges are studied.


    EDUL 8350: Doctoral Internship              [3‐0]

    As stated in the THECB standards for Ed.D. programs in educational administration/leadership, “Each doctoral student will participate in, and be extensively evaluated in, an internship in an operational setting distinct from prior or concurrent work experience”. The site will be determined by agreement between the student and her/his advisor. Each student will have this experience during the final 30 hours of the program. The advisor, in cooperation with the on‐site cooperating supervisor, will provide continuous monitoring and advisement of the student’s experience, beginning with the selection of a set of objectives for the student for the period of the internship. The practicing school leaders used to
    coordinate field experiences will also be involved selectively in doctoral internships. May be repeated for credit once.


    EDUL 8381: Problems in Organization and Administration of Public Schools              [3‐0]

    Research, readings and thorough study of the organization and administration of elementary and secondary schools; a careful analysis of the role of middle management personnel in the improvement of instruction; an analysis of administrative function and leadership style will be emphasized.


    EDUL 8390: Dissertation Proposal Development              [3‐0]

    Students will develop and defend a dissertation proposal before his or her committee. Students must be enrolled in a 3‐credit hour dissertation proposal development course at the time of a proposal defense.

    Prerequisite: Pass written comprehensive exam.


    EDUL 8395: Dissertation Research and Writing              [3‐0]

    Students will submit an application to conduct research to the University of Texas Rio Grande Valley Institutional Review Board and secure permission to conduct research prior to beginning any data collection, if applicable. Students must be enrolled in a 3‐credit hour dissertation research and writing course at the time of a dissertation defense.

    Prerequisite: Successful dissertation proposal defense, EDUL 8390.


    EDUL 8690: Dissertation Proposal Development              [6‐0]

    Students will develop and defend a dissertation proposal before his or her committee. Students must be enrolled in a 3‐credit hour dissertation proposal development course at the time of a proposal defense.

    Prerequisite: Pass written comprehensive exam.


    EDUL 8695: Dissertation Research and Writing              [6‐0]

    Students will submit an application to conduct research to the University of Texas Rio Grande Valley Institutional Review Board and secure permission to conduct research prior to beginning any data collection, if applicable. Students must be enrolled in a 3‐credit hour dissertation research and writing course at the time of a dissertation defense.

    Prerequisite: Successful dissertation proposal defense, EDUL 8390.