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DEd in Educational Leadership

online EdD online DEd
Nancy Heapes

Upcoming Informational Meet-and-Greet

Interested in pursuing your Doctorate of Education (DEd)? Come to our online meet-and-greet Tuesday, February 21 from 5:00-6:30pm to hear from current and past students about the program! RSVP your interest to Angela Burham, our Graduate Student Services Coordinator, at

The University of Oregon’s Department of Educational Methodology, Policy, and Leadership (EMPL) offers a Doctorate of Education (DEd) using a state-of-the-art virtual delivery system that debuted in 2015-16. The system blends real-time interaction with faculty, students, and online content that will enable faculty and students to present and collaborate virtually using any computer or mobile device. This system facilitates e-meetings, sharing documents and other media-rich content, running polls, and establishing virtual break-out groups. Students come to campus up to six times to learn with other DEd cohort members and work directly with faculty. Through this system, our students can access this program from anywhere in the nation.

New Equity Leadership Fellows Program!

Click here for detailed information and application.

DEd Program Presentation

Click here to view our DEd Information Presentation.

DEd Overview

Click here to view our DEd Overview Presentation.

DEd Fact Sheet

Download the EMPL DEd Fact Sheet here.

PhD and DEd Comparison Video

Please click here to see a presentation comparing our PhD and DEd programs.

Next application deadline: March 27, 2017

EMPL’s DEd enables its graduates to:

  • Improve K-12 student learning performance & progress
  • Improve effectiveness of professional practice
  • Enhance building/district capacity and capabilities
  • Cultivate and sustain professional communities of practice
  • Advance professional knowledge and analytical expertise

EMPL DEd students begin as a programmatic cohort in Year 1. The program’s core curriculum provides practicing educational professionals with a foundation for an advanced graduate degree, emphasizing leadership development, oral and written communication, and understanding of educational assessment and research. In students’ initial applications, they choose from three concentrations to frame their Year 2 coursework around problems of practice that inspire them. Those concentrations include:

  • Equity Leadership
  • Literacy Leadership
  • Policy and Leadership

Applicants may apply to one of the three concentrations or may delay their concentration choice until the end of Winter term during the first year of coursework.

Listen to EMPL Department Head, Dr. Charles Martinez, introduce our DEd concentration lineup.

By Year 3, students from all three concentrations will choose from one of three dissertation options, all of which are designed to affect changes in practice:

  • a scholarly article for an audience of academics and researchers
  • a grant proposal for an audience of potential funding organizations, or
  • a policy analysis for an audience of state/local education authorities or professional organizations.

Listen to EMPL alumni and distinguished educational leaders speak about our DEd Program

Click here to view video profiles of distinguished alumni.

Online EdD and DEd

Program Structure & Requirements

The DEd is the highest degree offered to those interested in developing practice-oriented expertise. EMPL’s DEd is adapted for the realities experienced by working educators. Courses are offered in the evenings and on weekends with on-campus and virtual course delivery, as well as with asynchronous modules that are family and job-friendly. The academic experience can be demanding at times; success requires careful time management. However, the program balances the competing demands of the classroom and the workplace.

To receive the doctorate, students must complete at least 144, at least 96 of which must be earned after admission to the program. Pending pre-approval from the department, students may transfer up to 48 prior, related Master’s credits from an accredited university if those credits were earned within 15 years prior to application to this program. Students must complete this program within 5 years.

The completion of the process includes a dissertation defense to the student’s committee. These defenses are scheduled on campus and are open to the public. Students may extend completion of the dissertation beyond the Year 3 as needed.

Planned Programs

The planned program, signed by the advisor and the student, should be emailed to Student Services Coordinator Angela Burham ( by the end of Year 1.

  • Planned Program for students admitted Summer 2016 - Policy Leadership Concentration
  • Planned Program for students admitted Summer 2016 - Equity Leadership Concentration
  • Planned Program for students admitted Summer 2015 - Equity Leadership Concentration
  • Planned Program for students admitted Summer 2015 - Literacy Leadership Concentration
  • Planned Program for students admitted Summer 2015 - Policy Leadership Concentration
  • Planned Program for students admitted Fall 2014 - Equity Leadership Concentration
  • Planned Program for students admitted Fall 2014 - Literacy Leadership Concentration
  • Planned Program for students admitted Fall 2014 - Policy Leadership Concentration
  • Planned Program for students admitted Fall 2013

Program Manuals

Online EdD, Online DEd

Concurrent Administrator Licensure Options

Students who begin the DEd with a Preliminary Administrator License (PreAL) will also receive the Professional Administrator License upon completion of their degree program. Students who do not have a PreAL have the option of the PreAL/DEd joint program, in which all 27 credits required to earn a PreAL apply toward the 142 credits needed for the DEd. Click here for more information.

Director: Nancy Heapes, PhD
Contact: Angela Burham, Student Services Coordinator
Department: Educational Methodology, Policy, and Leadership
Phone: (541) 346-1492
Degrees: DEd
Physical Address: 102 Lokey Education
Mailing Address: 5267 University of Oregon   Eugene, OR  97403