Ed.D. FAQs

FAQs for Ed.D. in Educational Leadership Students

Coursework generally takes 3 years to complete. Students take 2 courses in the fall, 2 courses in the spring and 3 courses in the summer for 3 years. Your dissertation will be embedded in your coursework with year 4 used to finalize the dissertation if needed. Below is a sample of a schedule used in the 2024 cohort.

Fall 2024 A600A785 or elective 
Spr 2025 A653Y520 
Sum 2025 A638 or electiveA677 or electiveA686
Milestone One: By end of the first year, Formulation of the Problem of Practice from A600
Fall 2025 A754Y611 
Spr 2026 A615Y501 
Sum 2026 A639A675A682
Milestone Two: By the end of the second year, Review of Evidence tied to the Problem in A754
Fall 2026 A671A799 
Spr 2027 A795A799 
Sum 2027 electiveElective 
Milestone Three: By the end of the third year, Design and carry out an improvement cycle from A671
Milestone Four: A799 Chair provides review and clean up 

The Executive Ed.D. program is 60 credits. You must have completed a master’s in a related-field before starting the Ed.D. program.

Typically, courses meet on the IU Bloomington Campus three weekends each semester and on-line between the face-to-face meetings. Students schedule two courses each semester. The weekend schedule allows students to meet for two classes on Saturday and Sunday. Saturday classes are typically held from 10:00-2:00 and 2:30-6:30. On Sunday, classes are typically held from 8:00-12:00 and 12:30-4:30. The program was set up this way in order to be accessible to students all over the state. If traveling from out of town, students generally stay in area hotels.

Due to the Ed.D. program delivery, course format, and schedule, attendance is essential during the face-to-face classes that occur three weekends per semester. As a result, class absences are reflected in a student’s course grade. Students are required to attend all classes, participate in discussions, and read the assigned material prior to each class. Regardless of the reason (illness, funeral, family or personal emergency), students will be deducted up to 5% of the course grade for every missed face-to-face class. If a student must relocate during the duration of the program, s/he may need to exit the program unless s/he is able to attend the face-to-face classes. If there is inclement weather predicted for a face-to-face class, the professor will notify students of alternative class plans.

We generally begin cohorts every other year. The next cohort begins Fall 2024.

Our program is cohort based. The next cohort will start Fall 2024.

Up to 18 credits may be transferred into the 60 credit EdD program; however, such credits must be above and beyond master’s level coursework. Typically, students are approved to transfer no more than 9 credits, reflecting the student’s elective credits. These courses require prior approval. Students must have earned a B or better in any transfer coursework. After admission, students should submit a completed transfer of credit form found on the graduate student portal. This form along with the email approval from the student's advisor or chair must be submitted to Ed Leadership Student Support at educlead@indiana.edu. The approval process typically takes 2-3 months.

You do not need to revalidate ANY of your master’s credits that were part of your admission to the executive EdD program (remember a master’s is a prerequisite for this program). However, any courses that you transfer in (those above and beyond your master’s degree) that are older than 7 years must be revalidated. Students will work with the instructor of record for the course in order to determine what needs to be done to revalidate (e.g., retake the course, take an exam, attend a conference, etc.). Contact Ed Leadership Student Support at educlead@indiana.edu or 812-856-8371.

We consider a variety of factors including undergraduate and graduate GPA, 2 letters of recommendation (at least one from a supervisor), a resume and a personal statement. Requirements and application can be found here. We are interested in highly motivated students who have demonstrated strong leadership skills. A strong academic record is also required.

Students should check Student Central for the latest information about tuition and fees.

Our program consistently ranks very highly in US News & World Report. You can see our current rankings here.

It is competitive. Students are encouraged to submit their application materials at least five months prior to the start of the next cohort. Cohorts generally fill several months before they begin. We generally accept 10-12 students per cohort.

The Educational Leadership faculty review EdD admission applications periodically and commit to rendering an admission decision well in advance of the next cohort. Cohorts begin every other year, thus it can take some time to receive an admission decision if you apply well before the beginning of the next cohort. If you have applied and would like more information about the status of your application, please contact Ed Leadership Student Support at educlead@indiana.edu or 812-856-8371.

Please see the School of Education Graduate Bulletin for a list of required courses for this program.

Your courses will generally be taught by full-time faculty members at Indiana University. Our professors have worked as teachers, principals, superintendents, lawyers, and have published widely in their areas of expertise. Several of the faculty members have been school and district administrators Indiana and/or other states.

Students begin their dissertations as part of their coursework with milestones completed towards the Problem of Practice Dissertation each year. By the end of the third year, the student will have a clearly defined problem of practice, a review of relevant evidence, and an implementation cycle for the problem of practice. Students will complete a four chapter dissertation under this model.

Yes, courses in the Ed.D. count toward the specialized certificate programs. To be eligible, you must take coursework required for the certificate prior to earning the Ed.D. In other words, you can’t graduate with a doctorate degree and then return to IU for this certificate and transfer courses in. IU has a policy that credits from a higher degree can’t transfer to a lower degree. Students interested in earning a certificate must submit an application to that certificate program, complete an ePOS, and apply to graduate.

Yes, but only if you have not already been nominated to candidacy. Students who are not enrolled at the IU School of Education for more than two years (and not yet nominated to candidacy) will need to submit a new application for the EdD program. Students who reapply are not guaranteed admission.

Visit the Doctoral Guide in the Graduate Student Portal for a variety of information related to our programs.

Contact Ed Leadership Student Support at educlead@indiana.edu or 812-856-8371.