Ph.D. in OLPD: Executive Ph.D. Cohort
NOTE: The Fall 2015 Executive Ph.D. cohort is currently full. A new cohort is offered every three years and we anticipate the next cohort to start Fall 2018.
Fall semester start only.
This doctoral program focuses on leadership of educational systems and is specially designed to meet the needs of mid-career educational leaders. The curriculum establishes foundational understandings of educational systems, leadership dynamics and the realities of power and politics in schools, as well as the role of research in educational innovation and improvement. Students will learn to examine multiple dimensions of PK-12 educational systems, including their cultural and historical contexts, policies and mandates that shape practice, and strategies to build consensus among diverse stakeholders. Students completing program requirements earn a Ph.D. degree in Organizational Leadership, Policy, and Development (OLPD).
Students take 48 credits of coursework examining system leadership focusing on:
- Systems thinking and the interdependent structures of organizational systems
- Theory and practice of leading complex learning systems
- Organizational culture and change
- Leadership to address race-based achievement gaps
- Analysis of education policy and practices and their influence on student learning
- Politics of decision making and communication
- Public engagement and cross-sector partnerships
- Global innovations in educational leadership and school effectiveness
- Evaluation of program effectiveness
- Analysis and application of research
Students also take courses in quantitative, qualitative, and mixed/complementary research methods. For the culminating Ph.D. dissertation, students identify a researchable problem, process or topic of interest, carry out original research, and disseminate findings to relevant audiences.
Advantages of this Cohort Program
- The University of Minnesota is one of the finest of its kind in the United States, highly ranked among private and public universities.
- Course content is relevant to the needs of experienced educational leaders.
- Courses are taught by OLPD faculty and faculty from across the University who are experts in educational policy and research, educational politics, leadership, organizational theory and practice, systems thinking, and research methods. They are widely recognized for their scholarly work and are excellent and committed teachers and advisers.
- A cohort-based program comprised of diverse education professionals provides a robust learning community in which members support and learn from each other.
- Courses are offered on the University of Minnesota—Twin Cities campus during a 3-4 week summer session and in full-day meetings twice a month during the academic year.
- It is possible to remain fully employed while completing requirements for this degree.
All components of an individual’s application credentials are considered in a holistic admissions process. The admissions committee looks for evidence of demonstrated leadership and doctoral level academic capability. Students can transfer adviser approved credits from previous graduate programs. The admissions committee may request a phone or Skype interview with an applicant.
- A completed master's degree or equivalent from an accredited institution GRE scores (taken within the last 5 years): Preferred scores: 153 verbal, 144 quantitative, 4.0 analytical writing
- 3.5 graduate grade point average; 3.0 undergraduate grade point average (preferred)
- At least 3 years of experience working in education or related organizations
- Completed essays (see application)
Indicate in the first sentence of your Personal Statement (essay #1) that you are applying for the EPL Executive Ph.D.
- Two recommendations from persons qualified to attest to the candidate’s critical thinking, problem-solving, and analytical writing capabilities, leadership skills and experience in educational leadership
- Resume or CV
How to Apply
- Note: Indicate in the first sentence of your Personal Statement (essay #1) that you are applying for the EPL Executive Ph.D. program.
NOTE: The Fall 2015 Executive PhD cohort is currently full. A new cohort is offered every three years and we anticipate the next cohort to start Fall 2018.
Revised March 9, 2016