Educational Studies Ed.D.:
Innovation and Education Reform Emphasis
Online + Summer Loveland Visits

A Mostly-Online Doctoral Program for Educators

US News best online graduate programs in education offical badge

UNC Online Graduate Programs in Education Rank Top 10 in the Nation According to US News & World Report

Our programs rank particularly high in student engagement.

This mostly-online Doctor of Education (Ed.D.) degree in Educational Studies provides working teachers and administrators with access to a premier doctoral program in education. The online program features our Innovation and Education Reform Emphasis, preparing informed, reflective and forward-thinking educational leaders who are prepared to implement and study educational change in today’s rapidly evolving educational systems.

In this Educational Studies Ed.D. program, you will study

  • Relationships between research, policy and practice in education
  • How to conduct, analyze and apply research of education
  • Issues surrounding curriculum, evaluation and implementation
  • Critical evaluation skills and perspectives of education and society
  • Ways to contribute to the improvement of education systems

This doctoral program begins the Summer term of each odd-numbered year. It is delivered mostly online with one-week courses delivered in Loveland, Colorado, the first three Summers. Your dissertation defense will also be presented face-to-face the final semester of your program. Other courses and experiences are completed online.

The Highest Level of Educational Leadership Preparation
from a National Leader in the Field

Graduates will be able to pursue careers in academia, the K–12 world, and other educational settings and agencies.

  • Take on leadership roles in school districts.
  • Become a University faculty member.
  • Work as a consultant to state and federal agencies.
  • Plan and implement curriculum at the district level.
  • Assume leadership roles for non-profit and private schools and agencies.

More Resources

We also encourage you to visit the School of Teacher Education page for this program.

Contact the Academic Program Coordinator

Educational Studies Ed.D.—Academic Program Coordinator

Dr. Mia Williams
(970) 351-2414

Course of Study

This 4-year, 64-credit (including dissertation) program is delivered mostly online. One-week face-to-face courses at the UNC Loveland Center at Centerra in Loveland, Colorado, the first three Summers fulfill your doctoral residency requirement and allow you to interact with program faculty and your peers in person. Additionally, your dissertation defense will be presented face-to-face the final semester of your program. The course sequence below completes the following degree requirements for the Educational Studies Ed.D.: Innovation and Education Reform emphasis.

  • Educational Studies Core—12 Credit Hours
  • Research Core—12 Credit Hours
  • Innovation and Education Reform—24 Credit Hours
  • Dissertation—16 Credit Hours

Scholarly Paper
In addition to the coursework and dissertation, doctoral students are required to complete and submit one publishable paper prior to completing comprehensive examinations. Other research endeavors prior to the dissertation are encouraged.

  Summer Fall Online Spring Online
Year 1

EDF 701 Doctoral Seminar (1) – 1-week in Loveland in July or August

EDF 670 Introduction to Research Literature (3)

EDF 685 Philosophical Foundations of Education (3)


SRM 602 Statistical Methods I (3)

SRM 680 Intro to Qualitative Research (3)

Year 2

EDF 778 Social Theories of Learning and Organizational Change (3) – Online

ELPS 666 Planning and Change in Education (3)

EDF 773 Literacy as Social Practice (3)

EDF 775 History of Education Reform and Change (3) – Online

SRM 686 Qualitative Case Study Research (3)

EDF 781 Perspectives on Curriculum (3)

EDF 701 Doctoral Seminar (1) – 1-week in July or August



Year 3

EDF 700 Implementation & Evaluation of Curriculum (3)

EDF 777 Social Justice in Educational Reform (3)

EDF 755 Design of Educational Research (3)

EDF 701 Doctoral Seminar (1) – 1-week in July or August

EDF 787 Technology, Innovation and Education (3)

EDF 795 Comprehensive Seminar (3)

Year 4

EDF 797 Doctoral Proposal Research (4) – Online

EDF 799 Doctoral Dissertation (6)

EDF 799 Doctoral Dissertation (6)

Admission Requirements and Transfer Credit

Tuition, Financial Aid and Health Insurance

Get Started

View a Video Demonstration of an Online Course

Top Rated for Quality

Best Online Graduate Education Programs

Ranked #8 in the nation by US News.

US News Best Online Graduate Education programs learn more button

Top Rated for Degree Cost

Most Affordable Online Degrees

Ranked among the top 50 in the nation.

Most Affordable Online Degrees-Learn More Button

Featured Program

Sports Coaching Master's

Enhance knowledge and expertise for your coaching career.

Sports Coaching Learn More Button