Mar 17, 2018  
USC Catalogue 2016-2017 
USC Catalogue 2016-2017 [ARCHIVED CATALOG]

Doctor of Education (EdD)

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The Doctor of Education (EdD) is a three-year degree program that equips practitioner-scholars with the skills needed to lead high-performing organizations, connect research with practice and help all students to learn. The program is geared toward working professionals who aspire to be leaders in urban education. Admission requires a master's degree and a minimum of three years of work experience in a related field.

Preliminary Review

The EdD preliminary review must be passed before the student has completed more than 21 units. Passing the preliminary review is prerequisite to continuing in the program.

Advisement Committee

The student selects a three-member advisement committee in consultation with the adviser upon applying to take the qualifying examination.

The committee chair must have a full-time appointment in the Rossier School of Education. One member of the committee may be a faculty member elsewhere or a full-time professional educator holding a doctorate and with strength in the area of the dissertation topic, if nominated by the committee chair and approved by the director of the EdD program.

Areas of Concentration

There are four areas from which students must select a specialization: K–12 Leadership in Urban School Settings, Educational Psychology, Higher Education Administration and Teacher Education in Multicultural Societies.

Unit Requirement

The EdD requires completion of 60 units of course work. A maximum of 4 dissertation units (794 Doctoral Dissertation) may be applied toward the degree. Students admitted with Advanced Standing complete a minimum of 43 units.

Additional Information


All EdD students must complete EDUC 532 Inquiry Methods I  and EDUC 536 Inquiry Methods II  for a total of 6 units.


Students must complete 6 units of research course work (EDUC 792 Critique of Research in Education  and EDUC 790 Research ).


In consultation with assigned advisers, students take 14 units of elective course work.

Admission to Candidacy

Admission to candidacy is a formal action taken by the faculty of the Rossier School of Education. That action is based upon passing the qualifying examination.

Doctoral Dissertation

A dissertation based upon original research is required. An acceptable dissertation must show technical mastery of a special field, capacity for independent research and scholarly ability. The student must be enrolled in 794 Doctoral Dissertation each fall and spring semester after admission to candidacy until the dissertation has been approved. A minimum of two semesters (4 units) is required. Enrollment in 794 prior to admission to candidacy is not permitted and such registration is invalid.

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