Program Overview

The Doctorate in Education is an advanced program of study that prepares graduates to serve in leadership roles in their specific disciplines. The components of the curriculum provide an intellectual framework for investigating, understanding, and affecting the broad range of academic, social, economic, and cultural issues and pressures facing modern educational organizations. Through the research and course requirements of the program, students gain expertise needed to effect the significant educational changes needed in the region.

Doctoral Program Goals are correlated with all content, course objectives, and student assessment components. Comprehensive examinations assess student acquisition of the knowledge base and skills essential for performance outcomes attainment and for dissertation completion.

 VSU’s doctoral program has three majors: 1) Adult and Career Education, 2) Curriculum and Instruction, and 3) Leadership.


The Doctorate in Education is administered by the Doctoral Coordinating Committee, chaired by the doctoral coordinator, operating under the direction of the dean of the Dewar College of Education and the dean of the Graduate School. Responsibility for monitoring student progress is managed by the department for each major.


The mission of Valdosta State University’s Doctor of Education program is to provide advanced professional education for experienced practitioners to meet the educational needs and challenges of the region. The program draws on the region’s cultural and social diversity to develop graduates with the knowledge, skills, and attitudes for fostering equitable and inclusive educational environments. Graduates apply broad knowledge bases, critical thinking, inquiry skills, and ethical practices for the improvement of education in the region.


  • In order to develop advanced professional education leaders, The Doctorate in Education is designed to meet the following goals:
  • Provide a program of study that maximizes opportunities for study, inquiry, and reflection through contact with a broad range of educators beyond students’ area of specialization;
  • Provide for the development of the knowledge, skills, and attitudes essential for promoting technology-rich educational environments;
  • Provide an interdisciplinary approach to inquiry that promotes a variety of practical and theoretical perspectives;
  • Prepare students to engage in the investigation of educational issues and solution of educational problems; and
  • Provide opportunities for the development of leadership skills and perspectives necessary to meet the challenges of restructured education.

Investigations are conducted in simulation and in field sites in the research methodology and analysis courses. This provides a solid bridge between the theoretical and conceptual bases used in viewing educational practice and the analytical frameworks and methodologies for investigating them.

Admission Requirements and Programs of Study