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EdD, Educational Leadership, FlexPath option

School of Public Service and Education

The EdD in Educational Leadership specialization is designed to prepare practicing professionals for leadership roles in colleges, universities, P–12 schools as well as corporate, governmental and non-governmental education organizations. Throughout the specialization, learners develop and deepen the knowledge, skills, and habits of mind that characterize successful leaders of learning organizations. Based on current professional knowledge and standards, the curriculum is centered on an inquiry-based approach to continuous improvement with a focus on systems thinking and analysis. The specialization provides learners with the opportunity to strengthen and apply analytical, leadership, communication, and change management skills to address critical, real-world problems of practice. Learners who pursue this specialization through the FlexPath option earn an EdD through self-paced demonstrations of competencies. These specialization requirements are not designed or intended to meet professional licensure requirements for the education profession.

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Core courses:

Foundations of Doctoral Studies in Education

In this course, learners gain understanding of the EdD program and insights into how cycles of inquiry and systems thinking are utilized to address problems of practice. Additionally, learners engage in critical thinking and communication while reflecting on their own personal learning and growth.  Must be taken during the learner’s first quarter. Cannot be fulfilled by transfer.

2 program points
The Dynamics of Organizational Improvement

This course provides an introduction to fundamental systems principles and skills of leadership in organizations with a focus on continuous organizational learning and improvement processes. Learners apply personal values and behaviors and those of organizations. Learners use basic principles of systems thinking, systems mapping, and approaches to inquiry cycles in relation to leadership processes and organizational change. In addition, learners apply disciplines of learning organizations and a change model to a problem of practice to real-world leadership challenges.  Cannot be fulfilled by transfer. ​

2 program points
EDD-FPX8030 *
Investigating Problems of Practice

In this course, learners examine continuous improvement models, engage in an inquiry cycle, develop skills of data and information literacy, and collaborate with stakeholders to assess organizational needs and dynamics. Learners identify an organizational issue, collect and analyze relevant data, and develop valid inferences. Learners document the process utilized to tell the story of their research as a way to effectively share with stakeholders. This course requires obtaining an organizational site and completing site-based-related assignments.  Prerequisite(s): EDD-FPX8010, EDD-FPX8020. Cannot be fulfilled by transfer.

2 program points
EDD-FPX8040 *
Research Design for Practitioners

In this course, learners are introduced to research approaches, designs, and methods with a focus on the needs of educational leaders. Learners assess conceptual and theoretical foundations of quantitative, qualitative, mixed methods, and action research designs and analyze a variety of research literature and journal articles through the lens of a practitioner. Learners acquire the knowledge necessary to assess the applicability of research and theoretical literature to practice and become critical consumers of research. Learners apply course concepts to the design of an action research study relevant to the learner’s organization.  Prerequisite(s): EDD-FPX8030. Cannot be fulfilled by transfer.

2 program points
EDD-FPX8050 *
Data Literacy for Leaders

In this course, learners apply the data literacy skills required by leaders for effective organizational planning, decision making, and communication with stakeholders. Learners examine skills such as data interpretation, data aggregation and disaggregation, transformation of data, use of multiple data sources, analysis, statistical techniques, and selection of appropriate metrics for the intended purpose. Learners also utilize technology to process data and present and communicate results.  Prerequisite(s): EDD-FPX8040. Cannot be fulfilled by transfer.

2 program points

Specialization courses: 

EDD-FPX8520 *
Educational Leadership by Design

Learners in this course continue the study of systems thinking and foundational leadership concepts and apply them to workplace environments. Learners examine systems thinking, use of systems tools, and inquiry and design cycles as ways to maximize available resources to solve problems under conditions of uncertainty and ambiguity. This course emphasizes the importance of evidence-based reasoning and critical analyses as essential skills of practitioners who plan action research interventions or engage in the design and implementation of any improvement process.  Prerequisite(s): EDD-FPX8010, completion or concurrent registration in EDD-FPX8020. Cannot be fulfilled by transfer.

2 program points
EDD-FPX8522 *
Leading a Culture of Learning and Inclusion

In this course, learners evaluate the role of culture in supporting an organization’s ability to learn, improve, and successfully adapt to a changing environment, and the leader’s role in shaping it. Learners analyze patterns of behaviors within organizations, as well as the knowledge, skills, and dispositions of the inclusive leader that support values of diversity and equity in organizational culture and in organizational development and improvement processes. Additionally, learners examine the characteristics and theoretical bases of cultural awareness, sensitivity and responsiveness, and their roles in achieving the goals of a learning organization.  Prerequisite(s): EDD-FPX8520. Cannot be fulfilled by transfer. 

2 program points
EDD-FPX8524 *
The Future of Educational Leadership

Learners in this course demonstrate leadership skills that support the ability to exercise influence regardless of position in an organization and the importance of deep knowledge and understanding of internal and external environmental factors impacting an educational organization. This course emphasizes ongoing learning about current research and future trends in education in a rapidly changing environment. Learners also examine social influence and communication skills, commitment rather than compliance, empowerment of others, creative practice, and management of self, along with a robust professional knowledge base as they consider ways to build the capacity of an organization to envision its future.  Prerequisite(s): EDD-FPX8520. Cannot be fulfilled by transfer. 

2 program points
EDD-FPX8526 *
Change Leadership in a Learning Organization

In this course, learners evaluate leading and managing organizational change processes. Learners evaluate several change models, and examine the theory and practice of change leadership and the application of collaboration and communication skills that lead to organizational learning and desired outcomes. Learners apply knowledge of systems thinking and tools, organizational development principles, and research methods to planning, implementing, and monitoring improvement interventions.  Prerequisite(s): EDD-FPX8520, EDD-FPX8522, EDD-FPX8524. Cannot be fulfilled by transfer.

2 program points
EDD-FPX8528 *
Assessment and Evaluation in the Learning Organization

In this course, learners examine the varied purposes of evaluation and evaluation models and how and when to apply them. Evaluation and assessment processes are framed as learning tools leading to new knowledge and understanding with a focus on emergent and evidence-based recommendations to determine next steps leading to ongoing cycles of continuous improvement. The course emphasizes reflective practice, data literacy, research reasoning, and habits of mind as leadership characteristics that support a continuous personal and organizational learning process.  Prerequisite(s): EDD-FPX8030, EDD-FPX8526.  Cannot be fulfilled by transfer.

2 program points

Upon completion of all required coursework: 

EDD-FPX9951 *
EdD Doctoral Project 1

In this course, learners collaborate with stakeholders at their doctoral project sites to collect evidence and share relevant literature to identify and frame a chosen problem of practice. Learners demonstrate inquiry, analysis, communication, and leadership skills as well as the ability to evaluate and interpret organizational data to determine performance gaps and root causes. Learners increase knowledge and understanding of a problem and the factors that impact it in order to develop a problem statement for their doctoral project. Learners also secure the commitment of their project site to conduct their applied improvement project.  Prerequisite(s): EDD-FPX8050, EDD-FPX8528.  Cannot be fulfilled by transfer.

2 program points
EDD-FPX9952 *
EdD Doctoral Project 2

In this course, learners collaborate with stakeholders at their doctoral project site to begin to develop a potential intervention that addresses a problem of practice. Learners develop an in-depth literature review that synthesizes relevant theory and best practices pertaining to the problem and the proposed solution and begin to develop an implementation plan to address a problem of practice. Prerequisite(s): EDD-FPX9951. Cannot be fulfilled by transfer.

2 program points
EDD-FPX9953 *
EdD Doctoral Project 3

In this course, learners continue to collaborate with stakeholders at their doctoral project site to develop a potential intervention that addresses a problem of practice and develop a detailed implementation plan. Learners complete and submit IRB applications for approval. Prerequisite(s): EDD-FPX9952. Cannot be fulfilled by transfer.

2 program points
EDD-FPX9954 *
EdD Doctoral Project 4

In this course, learners collect and evaluate doctoral project data, applying appropriate quantitative and qualitative analysis tools. Learners make valid inferences from the data in relation to the goals of the intervention and the implementation process. Learners incorporate written and visual formats to effectively communicate their results in preparation for developing their written report in EDD-FPX9955Prerequisite(s): EDD-FPX9953. Cannot be fulfilled by transfer.

2 program points
EDD-FPX9955 *
EdD Doctoral Project 5

In this course, learners synthesize their findings, key learnings, and next steps in relation to their doctoral project in a written report that includes learner reflections on the applied improvement project experience, and provides the basis for the doctoral project presentation learners develop in EDD-FPX9956.  Prerequisite(s): EDD-FPX9954. Cannot be fulfilled by transfer.  ​

2 program points
EDD-FPX9956 *
EdD Doctoral Project 6

In this course, learners complete their doctoral project by developing a presentation on the problem, intervention, results, and sharing with stakeholders. In addition, learners submit a portfolio of their signature assignments related to their doctoral project.​  Prerequisite(s): EDD-FPX9955. Cannot be fulfilled by transfer. ​

2 program points






At least 32 program points

* Denotes courses that have prerequisite(s). Refer to the descriptions for further details.

Learners who do not complete all program requirements within quarter credit/program point minimums will be required to accrue such additional quarter credits/program points as are associated with any additional or repeat coursework necessary for successful completion of program requirements.

GuidedPath courses and FlexPath courses fulfill the program requirements and prerequisites for each delivery model.

This specialization is not designed to lead to license, endorsement, other professional credential, or salary advancement. Contact your school district for a determination on qualifications for salary advancement.