Degree Details

Degree Type

  • Doctoral Programs


  • In-Person


  • Part-Time


  • On-Campus
Degree Requirements

Boston University’s Doctor of Education (EdD) in Educational Leadership & Policy Studies, with a specialization in Leadership in Early Childhood Education–Grade 12, is designed for current early childhood through Grade 12 school and district leaders. Housed at Boston University Wheelock College of Education & Human Development, the EdD program prepares students for high-level leadership positions in public, independent, and charter schools.

Students in the EdD program study leadership theory and practice. The program is designed for students with some leadership experience, either in formal or informal settings. It combines critically important theoretical background and practical experiences to position graduates to take on increased leadership responsibilities in schools and communities. This program has a strong focus on the marriage of academic excellence and social justice.

Note: The EdD in Educational Leadership & Policy Studies program admits new cohorts every other calendar school year. The next cohort will launch in July 2024.

About the EdD Program

Collaborative learning and fieldwork are at the heart of this doctoral program. Students admitted to the program will join a cohort of that includes organizational leadership peers, including superintendents, principals, assistant principals, department chairs, deans, program directors, and curriculum leaders. You will apply your learning to practice through projects based in your home schools and districts and work collaboratively to test, refine, and monitor innovative solutions to real problems, driving student, teacher, and leader growth in your own educational community.

The EdD in Educational Leadership & Policy Studies is offered in an executive education format designed for working professionals. Classes meet for two weeks in July and then for one weekend (Friday and Saturday) per month during the academic year. This is a three-year program is offered on a part-time basis and begins in the summer term.

Note: As the EdD in Educational Leadership & Policy Studies program is part-time, International students are not eligible for this program.

The EdD program culminates in a dissertation of the practice, which builds upon coursework and experience from students’ home schools and districts. To ensure timely completion of the dissertation, the program provides three dissertation development courses that serve to scaffold each phase of the research and writing process.

Students will learn to address fundamental challenges in our schools, including but not limited to:

  • Developing and sustaining inclusive and collaborative governance structures for our school and district cultures that reflect a “we/not I” ethos
  • Aligning school and district core values and goals with policies, practices, and budgets
  • Exercising leadership in challenging political environments
  • Engaging a diverse set of stakeholders in decision making
  • Ensuring equitable opportunities for student success
  • Planning strategically for an ever-evolving educational environment
  • Supporting families as partners in children’s success
  • Addressing longstanding and new legal issues that impact schools
  • Preparing for and managing crises
  • Providing alternatives to special education in math and literacy
  • Integrating high-impact strategies for behavioral/social/emotional development and intervention
  • Developing and implementing effective communication strategies
  • Having difficult conversations with educators in need of improvement
  • Empowering district and school-based leadership teams to develop their own professional learning

Dates & Deadlines

July 2024 START

Aug 15, 2023

Application Open

July 2024 Start

Feb 5, 2024

Application Deadline

Featured Faculty

The core faculty in the EdD in Educational Leadership & Policy Studies at Boston University include individuals who have exercised leadership in a variety of educational settings and communities. The program faculty offer numerous opportunities to connect theory to practice.

Career Outcomes

Graduates of Boston University’s EdD in Educational Leadership & Policy Studies are well-prepared to seek high-level administrative positions in educational settings from early childhood through Grade 12, including public, independent, and charter schools.

The EdD program prepares students for licensure in several areas:

  • Principal or assistant principal
  • Director
  • Supervisor
  • Superintendent or assistant superintendent

Additional non-licensure roles within community, state, and federal organizations and agencies include:

  • Equity, diversity & inclusion officer
  • Executive director
  • Head of school
  • Policy leader

Related Information

Field-Based Experiences

A practicum in a school setting is required for EdD students seeking state licensure. Students typically conduct their practicum in their own school setting or in one nearby. Faculty can help students identify appropriate settings.

Graduate Admissions

Connect with BU Wheelock to learn more about the EdD in Educational Leadership & Policy Studies. Hear about application requirements, deadlines, financial assistance, and more. Sign up for one of our upcoming information sessions.

Master’s Degree Programs

BU Wheelock’s Educational Leadership & Policy Studies program offers several options for those seeking a master’s degree. Explore our master’s degrees, which include both licensure and non-licensure options.

Area of Study
Area of Interest