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The Doctor of Education with a concentration in K-12 Education Leadership is designed for working professionals seeking training to become highly qualified educational leaders for K-12 school districts. Emphasis is placed on the expanding and changing role of education for social change to meet the needs of society. The program focuses on providing broad knowledge of social, political, and economic forces at work in society, as well as developing leaders that can meet both current and future leadership challenges in K-12 education. The program combines theory and practice with the goal of equipping its graduates with an in-depth knowledge of key leadership skills such as applied research, problem-solving, systems thinking, social intelligence, professional development, and higher order cognitive skills.


ED.D. Formats


Blended: Online & On-Campus (Greer, S.C.)


Click the link below to see the Academic Terms


Click the link below to see the required texts for this major.



K-12 Leadership Concentration


EDL 701 Introduction to Doctoral Studies: K-12 (3)

EDL 702 Social Foundations: K-12 (3)

EDL 703 Organizational Development: K-12 (3)

EDL 704 Leadership and Technology: K-12 (3)

EDL 705 Advanced Ethical Leadership Studies: K-12 (3)

EDL 706 Conflict Resolution, Mediation and Personnel Management: K-12 (3)

EDL 707 Politics of Education: Historical Frameworks: K-12 (3)

EDL 708 Learning and Instruction: K-12 (3)

EDL 721Curriculum, Instruction, and Supervision (3)

EDL 722 Accountability (3)

EDL 723 Field Analysis of Current Practices (3)

EDL 724 Directed Independent Study: Self Selected (3)

Elective Bank (3)

Elective Bank (3)

Elective Bank (3)

EDL 761Quantitative Research (3)

EDL 762 Qualitative Research (3)


Oral and Written Comprehensive Exams


EDL 763 The Dissertation Proposal (3)

EDL 764 Dissertation 1 (3)

EDL 765 Dissertation 2 (3)

Dissertation Defense




EDL 701 or EDL 711 Introduction to Doctoral Studies
This course is designed as an introduction to the doctoral program. Major themes of the course include an overview of the requirements for a doctorate, coursework, comprehensive exam process, research and the dissertation process. An overview of data analysis and data-driven decision making; modeling and critiquing effective leadership practices; developing good research questions; reviewing the steps of the doctoral process and acquainting the candidate with the process to successfully complete the degree. NOTE: Lower course number is K-12 emphasis and higher course number is Higher Education emphasis

EDL 702 or EDL 712 Social Foundations
This course is designed to explore the social, historical, philosophical, and cultural foundations of United States public education. Students will examine past and contemporary school practices, educational policy and the relationship between policy, identity and practices as a leader.
NOTE: Lower course number is K-12 emphasis and higher course number is Higher Education emphasis

EDL 703 or 713 Organizational Development
This course provides students with the knowledge and practices necessary to identify and understand organizational behavior and development. The processes involved in managing and sustaining organizations are examined. Philosophical, psychological, social and economic issues impacting educational organizations will be identified for analysis and problem-solving as candidates learn to positively study and develop organizations. NOTE: Lower course number is K-12 emphasis and higher course number is Higher Education emphasis

EDL 704 or 714 Leadership and Technology
This course focuses on preparing educational leaders to develop a system-wide analysis of educational technology and integrate technology into their leadership roles. Candidates will develop knowledge and skills required for data-driven leadership, and explore the potential of technological trends for leadership. NOTE: Lower course number is K-12 emphasis and higher course number is Higher Education emphasis

EDL 705 or 715 Advanced Ethical Leadership Studies
Designed to promote studentsí purposeful inquiry for knowledge in the study of ethics above the Masterís level. Applies ethics analysis and evaluates ethical decision making. Candidates study ethical leadership styles and apply that to developing public policy while examining advanced ethics and the implications for their effect on leadership. NOTE: Lower course number is K-12 emphasis and higher course number is Higher Education emphasis

EDL 706 or 716 Conflict Resolution, Mediation and Personnel Management.
This course examines a foundational approach to conflict resolution, mediation, mentoring and professional development from a leadership perspective. Participants will be equipped to work with and empower personnel to enhance organizational effectiveness while navigating the complex role of resolving individual, group and organizational conflict. NOTE: Lower course number is K-12 emphasis and higher course number is Higher Education emphasis

EDL 707 or 717 Politics of Education: Historical Frameworks
This course examines the historical political implications on curriculum, objectives and program sequence and overall organizational functioning. Focuses on analysis of historical interactions among school district, local community, state and federal systems and their impact on leadership.
NOTE: Lower course number is K-12 emphasis and higher course number is Higher Education emphasis

EDL 708 or 718 Learning and Instruction
This course examines a foundational approach to learning and instruction to maximize student achievement. Instructional practices, models, applications, and innovative approaches will be examined in regards to teaching and learning. NOTE: Lower course number is K-12 emphasis and higher course number is Higher Education emphasis.


K-12 Leadership Degree:


EDL 721 Curriculum, Instruction and Supervision
Designed to build upon candidatesí experiences as teachers and curriculum designers/evaluators. The course will develop leadership skills in analyzing system-wide curricular efforts; evaluating curriculum, supervision of personnel, developing curriculum and models of instruction and assessment. Candidates learn the complex system-wide leadership challenges under the scrutiny of local, state and national mandates.

EDL 722 Accountability
This course is designed for leaders to identify, analyze and explore educational accountability issues at the classroom, district, state and national levels relative to policy mandates. The current practices of high learning standards, performance evaluation models, accountability models and curriculum accountability initiatives are explored.

EDL 723 Field Analysis of Current Practices
This course is an instructor directed field study for candidates who are currently placed in an educational setting (or other approved setting) to intensively study practices, leadership style and overall leadership effectiveness.

EDL 724 Directed Independent Study: Self Selected Research
Prerequisites: Admission to the Ed.D. Program. Permission of Instructor. This course is a self- selected/directed field study for candidates that involves intensive study of a topic in the studentís research area.  




EDL 741 or 751 Educational Policy
This course is designed for advanced study of educational policies and law. It builds upon coursework taken at the Masters level. The course will develop the ability of leaders to analyze and assess laws, policies and practices that impact educational systems. It will also provide candidates with frameworks to improve organizational effectiveness at both the technical and human resource level. NOTE: Lower course number is K-12 emphasis and higher course number is Higher Education emphasis

EDL 742 or 752 Systemic Resource Management
This course provides the analysis, development of strategies, and management of unit internal and external funds. Candidates will learn the resource development and resource management including personnel and financial. Resource study will include internal and external funding budgets, resource allocation models and examine private, state, and federal compliance regulations. NOTE: Lower course number is K-12 emphasis and higher course number is Higher Education emphasis

EDL 743 or 753 Strategic Planning
This course focuses on practical approaches for long-term and short-term planning including strategic thinking, developing core competencies, strategic formulation, decision making, communicating decisions and planning for successful implementation of strategies.  Candidates learn the complexities of planning and implementing the processes as a leader. NOTE: Lower course number is K-12 emphasis and higher course number is Higher Education emphasis.

EDL 744 or 754 Todayís Student
This course assists leaders in developing a clear understanding of the developmental issues facing students and the process by which development occurs. Extensive study of social development and the application of principles of educational settings will assist professionals in supporting diverse student populations and leading increasingly complex groups. NOTE: Lower course number is K-12 emphasis and higher course number is Higher Education emphasis

EDL 745 or 755 Academic Culture & Learning
This course is an intensive examination of the student, faculty, and administrative cultures in education environments. Topics include the history and philosophy of academic culture and the internal and external influences on teaching and learning, faculty and students, and instructional models and methods. NOTE: Lower course number is K-12 emphasis and higher course number is Higher Education emphasis

EDL 746 Dissertation Seminar
This is a one hour credit course for those candidates who require additional time, above the program requirements of six, to complete the dissertation process.


Research Core:


EDL 761 Quantitative Research
Provides knowledge and skills in applied statistics. Focus is on skill development to appropriately develop, examine and apply statistical analysis in their respective program studies and professional settings.

EDL 762 Qualitative Research
This course provides knowledge and skills in qualitative methods commonly used in educational settings. Major components of the course include qualitative theoretical/conceptual frameworks, research designs, instrument development and data collection procedures, data analysis and interpreting and reporting results.

EDL 763 Dissertation Proposal
This course will allow students to discuss the fundamental concepts and tools of research applied to educational problems. Each student will prepare a proposal for the dissertation. This course requires knowledge of the literature and ongoing student engagement in research. The student will complete the IRB application process in this course.

EDL 764 Dissertation 1
This course is to develop an approved dissertation proposal. Credit hours taken by students to assist them in analyzing their research data and begin writing their dissertation.

EDL 765 Dissertation 2
This course is to further develop and finalize their research data and writing their complete dissertation in preparation for formal dissertation defense.



Dr. Shelley Dugle

Dean of the Graduate School of Education

Shelley Dugle has served as the dean of the Graduate School of Education at NGU since 2010, where she has developed the M.Ed. and MAT programs with her team of faculty members. She enjoys both administrative tasks and teaching graduate courses. Prior to this, Dugle taught K-8 students with mild to moderate disabilities in the public school setting and also undergraduate education majors at an Ohio institution. Dugle enjoys spending time with her two daughters, three dogs, and family/friends. She currently serves as a Merge ministry small group leader at Fellowship Greenville and is thankful for every day God has given her to enjoy love and life.

Dr. Michael Butler

Professor of Education

Michael Butler served as the Secondary Education Coordinator for the North Greenville University undergraduate Teacher Education programs from 2007-2011. While serving on the undergraduate campus, Butler co-founded the NGU Student Chapter of Association for Supervision and Curriculum Development and was an NCATE Standard writer for the accreditation renewal process. Butler currently serves in the graduate school college of education, where he co-authored the Master of Art in Teaching program and the Educational Leadership Doctoral program. Butlerís specializations are the social and historical foundation of education, educational public policy, applied research, and assessment.


Dr. Harold Long

Associate Professor and Director of Supervised Student Teaching

Harold Long is a professor with the Graduate School of Education and directs student teaching. He has earned degrees in Psychology (B.S.), Elementary Education (M.A.) and Educational Administration (Ed.D.). Prior to joining NGU, he spent his career in public education working at every level including elementary, high school and coordinating educational research at Clemson University. In addition to his duties at the graduate school, he conducts educational research, writes and has consulted with several schools and districts. In his free time, Long particularly enjoys traveling the United States with his family in their RV.

Dr. Mary Ann Solesbee

Read to Succeed Specialist

Mary Ann Solesbee served as chair of the Education Department at North Greenville University from 1995-2005, where she led the team to develop the inaugural undergraduate teacher education program. She has also worked in public education as a teacher, literacy coach, and director of the Teaching American History Grant, Teaching American History Right Under Our Feet. She is the author of the Sal and Amanda book series for children, which highlights South Carolina history with a bit of mystery. She is presently serving as the Read to Succeed Specialist for the Graduate School of Education at NGU.



Prospective Students


Justin J. Pitts
Director of Adult and Graduate Admissions
Local: (864) 663-7507
Toll Free: 1-844-333-4566



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