CPED logoThe College of Education, Health and Human Development is a proud member of the Carnegie Project on the Education Doctorate.

The Department of Education is not accepting applications to the EdD in Educational Leadership at this time. 


Those students completing the degree requirements for the EdS or EdD will have met the academic requirements necessary for a Montana Class III Administrative license with a Superintendent endorsement.  Additionally, a the School Superintendent Certificate program is available for those students who already hold a Master’s degree and Principal Licensure.

Program Flow

The Educational Leadership program courses are offered using a combination of delivery methods. Online courses are delivered completely via distance technology and blended courses use a combination of distance delivery and face-to-face meetings. The structure of the course will determine the delivery methods employed.  For example, many EdD program courses are usually blended such that the class meets for face-to-face instruction one weekend a month and online during the weeks in between meetings.

After admission to the EdD program, the applicant will be assigned a temporary advisor and should then meet with his/her assigned advisor. Actual courses taken during the initial stage will be based on the student's previous academic work and advisor/committee approval.

Program of Study

Course Number
Course Title
Doctoral Core
Advanced Educational Psychology
Ldrshp and Organizational Thry
Supervision & Instruct Ldrshp
Leading Social Justice
Ed Policy & Politics
Special Topics
Critical Race Theory
Planning Program Assessment
Superintendent Certification Required Courses
Field Experience in Educ Leadership
The School Superintendent
Personnel & Collective Bargaining in MT
MT Finance & Facilities
MT Legal & Policy Studies

Research Required Core

Doctoral Seminar
Educational Statistics II
Quantitative Educational Research
Qualitative Educational Research

Dissertation Seminar

EDCI 506, EDCI 501 or equivalent are prerequisite courses and do not satisfy research component of the degree.
Dissertation Credits
Doctoral Thesis
Total Credits
View the Graduate Research Methods 3-year rotation for both required and elective research offerings. 


Each doctoral student's committee must consist of at least four approved members. The majority of the committee should be made up of faculty from the degree-granting department. The chair and one other approved member must be from the Educational Leadership faculty. Two other approved members will be selected based upon their ability to contribute to the student's studies leading up to and through the dissertation research. These two committee members must have academic credentials in the area of the student's program of study and be approved by the Head of the Department of Education and Dean of the Graduate School. For information regarding graduate representatives, please refer to the Graduate School policy.


The student should carefully select his/her chair after thorough conversations with the Educational Leadership faculty members that he or she believes might have an interest in their doctoral research and/or the ability to work with them towards generating a defensible dissertation. The committee as a whole is subject to approval by the Head of the Department of Education. The chair will advise students in selecting committee members and in understanding the dissertation process. The chair and at least one committee member will be the primary readers of the dissertation as it is being written. The importance of selecting the right chair cannot be overstated. However, chairs and members of the student's committee are subject to change. In addition, revision to the program of study can be made during the course of study with the committee's approval.

Comprehensive Examinations

Comprehensive examinations are required for completion of all EdD degrees in Educational Leadership. Students are expected to demonstrate mastery of the program of study and the ability to interact with the research in that area. Students should refer to The Graduate School's Policies and Procedures web page.

After completion of at least two thirds of the required coursework, EdD students will complete a written comprehensive exam. The exam is completed in writing and then orally defended in front of the entire Graduate Committee. Through the comprehensive exam, students will be expected to demonstrate: 1) the ability to integrate concepts from courses into a holistic viewpoint; 2) the ability to apply material to anticipated real-life situations based on the theoretical principles and concepts covered in classes; 3) the ability to critically read, analyze, and critique research; and 4) a readiness to move forward to create their own research.

Generally, there are two primary question areas: 1) Identification of a topic with the potential to contribute to the literature in Educational Leadership, and a critical evaluation of the research on that topic; and 2) Design a research project on the topic of interest. Students will be expected to demonstrate a mastery of aspects of both qualitative and quantitative projects (such as sampling, validity, reliability, data analysis).

Additional Doctor of Education Requirements

The Doctor of Education degree must meet the minimum requirements in the For Doctoral Students section of the Graduate School's website with the following exception: only fourteen (14) credits of dissertation are required. Additional requirements for the EdD degree beyond these minimums are available through the Department of Education. All EdD degree candidates are expected to be familiar with both The Graduate School's degree requirements and Department of Education degree requirements listed on the program's website.

Contact Information

Dr. Jason Cummins, Program Leader and Assistant Professor of Educational Leadership
Phone: 406-994-4142   Email: [email protected]

Dr. Bill Ruff, Professor of Educational Leadership
406-994-4182  Email: [email protected]

Dr. Tena Versland, Associate Professor of Educational Leadership
406-994-6799  Email: [email protected]