California State University, Sacramento

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Doctorate in Educational Leadership College of Education

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Program Design & Curriculum

The Doctorate in Educational Leadership Program is designed to produce exemplary educational leaders for schools, community colleges, and related areas within education. Graduates of this program will be prepared to lead in educational environments that promote learning, equity, and achievement for all students.

Sacramento State is a member of the University Council for Educational Administration.

UCEA Member Seal

Program Requirements

Why Choose Sacramento State for your Education Doctorate?

  • Camaraderie with the same cohort of students throughout the program
  • Every-other-weekend schedule designed for working professionals
  • Renowned faculty who are steeped in regional and national education issues
  • Support to help you succeed throughout the dissertation process
  • Face-to-face interaction and networks with students and faculty
  • Accelerated 3-year program

Information Session Slides

Innovative & Collaborative Curriculum

Three major core curricular elements form the basis of the California State University, Sacramento Doctorate in Educational Leadership and Policy program:

  1. Leadership
  2. Research Methods
  3. Field-based Study.

In addition, three key curricular themes provide the focus for all coursework in the program:

  1. Transformational Leadership
  2. Critical Policy Analysis and Action
  3. Informed Decision-Making

The program is an interdisciplinary collaboration between two departments — Educational Leadership and Policy Studies and Public Policy and Administration.

Public schools and community colleges in the area also partner with the program to develop a meaningful course of study and graduate experience.

doctoral students working together in class

Designed for Working Professionals

The program, while rigorous, is organized to meet the needs of working education professionals.

A variety of innovative measures encourage students to use their job-related problems as topics for research assignments, thus increasing relevance and facilitating learning.

During the three-year program, courses are undertaken year-round:

  • The first two years, students typically take classes on Friday evenings and all day Saturday, every other week.
  • During the third year, students work independently on a doctoral dissertation under the guidance of a faculty committee.
  • Students should also expect to do extensive reading and research outside of class meeting times.

The majority of the program classes will be held on the Sacramento State campus. However, there may be sessions held with partner institutions in public schools and community colleges as appropriate.