Jun 21, 2024  
2020-2021 Graduate Catalog 
2020-2021 Graduate Catalog [ARCHIVED CATALOG]

Education Major, PhD, Leadership Studies in Education Concentration

The PhD major in Education with a concentration in Leadership Studies program is directed toward developing practitioner-scholars who understand the power of ideas and who place those ideas in service to improve educational practice. The doctoral program seeks to develop in these scholar-practitioners both the skill and disposition to inquiry, policy analysis, and evaluation. Students admitted into the program are seasoned leaders in their school systems and possess both the intellectual ability to become scholars and the disposition of mind to become exemplary practitioners.

Further, doctoral study is designed to:

  1. accent the heritage of the educational enterprise and its centrality to the strength of a democratic society,
  2. equip students with the dispositions and skills to challenge the status quo and engage in evaluative policy dialogue and scholarship regarding   the role and performance of educational organizations,
  3. link competence and conscience via the study of ethics, and
  4. emphasize the connection between theory and practice.

The Leadership Studies in Education doctorate presents leadership as an artistic endeavor enhanced through self-awareness and validation. The program assists students with opportunities and techniques for enhancing self-understanding in conjunction with acquiring knowledge and skills. The program assumes that 1) leaders lead from their values, and 2) encourages self-exploration and clarification of values as a means for interpreting and responding to learned theory.

Concentration (Required)

Leadership Studies in Education

Campus Code

Knoxville Campus

Admissions Standards/Procedures

  • Admission Requirements and Materials to be Submitted
    • The University of Tennessee, Knoxville, online graduate application to the Office of Graduate Admissions.
    • The Educational Leadership and Policy Studies Departmental Application for Graduate Study.
    • Three letters of reference from those who know of the candidate’s record and promise are required.
    • An overall GPA of 3.50 in previous graduate study is required for admission to doctoral study and an interview with the faculty may be required.
  • Admissions decisions are made on a holistic basis to discern the candidate’s promise for doctoral study and to ascertain the match of the candidate’s educational goals with the resources and goals of the department.

Credit Hours Required

75 graduate credit hours

Required Courses

  • Educational Administration Foundations (18 graduate credit hours)
  • Research Foundation courses (15 graduate credit hours)
  • Specialization courses (12 graduate credit hours)
    • Designed to meet students’ professional goals and interests.
    • Specialization interests may be pursued in regularly scheduled coursework in the program and/or cognate work in other departments and via internships, independent studies and reading courses. The courses chosen in consultation with the Graduate Advisor or Major Professor.
  • Cognate (6 graduate credit hours)
    • Taken outside the Department of Educational Leadership and Policy Studies.
  •  Dissertation (24 credit hours) 

Non-Course Requirements

  • The comprehensive examination is taken near or at the completion of coursework. The examination involves a written and an oral component.
  • An overall GPA of 3.50 is required to take the comprehensive examination.
  • Successful completion and defense of a dissertation.