Doctorate of Education (EdD)


The Doctor of Education (EdD) Program at Carson-Newman University will build on previous education and experience to continue to develop leadership skills.. Designed for full-time educators who already have a degree (master’s or EdS), the doctoral program at Carson-Newman builds on your previous education and experience. With an emphasis on analyzing theory and research findings in a variety of educational settings, the program will also have you explore applications of research and develop your leadership skills. In a flexible format, you complete assignments online and participate in online discussions and group activities. During the fall and spring terms, you will finish one three-credit course every eight weeks, and during the summer, you may complete up to four courses. 


  • Administrative Leadership
  • Curriculum and Instruction Leadership


The Educator Preparation Program (EPP) at Carson-Newman University is fully accredited by the Council for the Accreditation of Educator Preparation (CAEP). For information regarding the CAEP Annual Reporting Measures, click here.


  • 57 credit hours
  • Approximately 3 years
  • Fully online


In your capstone research experience, you’ll develop a research proposal and dissertation under the direction of the Institutional Review Board of the Graduate Committee.


A graduate degree is an investment in your future, and we want to equip you to succeed.

  • As a graduate student at Carson-Newman you’ll receive access to the full Microsoft Office suite.
  • Graduate students enrolled in at least six (6) credit hours qualify to apply for federal financial aid. If you qualify, you can borrow up to $20,500 per year, which is more than enough to cover the total program cost.
  • You’ll be assigned a personal faculty advisor, who will help draft a course plan tailored to your specific goals.


Our no interest payment plans help reduce up-front costs. Enrolling in a payment plan allows you to make monthly payments on your direct charges instead of paying your full balance before classes start.

Our Office of Financial Aid is available to guide you through the many options available to graduate students at Carson-Newman.


In the EdD program, you will complete a series of courses and a qualifying exam prior to proceeding to the research component. The EdD program requires three semesters of consecutive enrollment to satisfy residency requirements. All coursework must be completed within seven years from full admission to the program.

If you are seeking administrative licensure, the Administrative Licensure Specialization, which results in the ILL-B license, can be added to the EdD. Upon passing the Praxis Leaders Licensure Assessment (SLLA) you may be recommended for the Beginning Administrative License (ILL-B) in the state of Tennessee. Requirements to become a candidate for administrative licensure include, but are not limited to, two completed years of successful teaching, practicum hours completed in a Tennessee public school under supervision of an approved mentor, and a recommendation from your current school system.


  • Foundations of Leadership
  • Legal and Ethical Issues
  • Educational Leadership Theory and Policy Analysis
  • Emergent Educational Leadership Trends and Topics
  • Quantitative and Qualitative Research Design
  • Management of the School
  • Professional Learning Communities
  • Additional coursework in a Cognate Area
  • Organizational Leadership
  • Financial Planning and Responsibilities
  • Ethical, Social, Spiritual Leadership Principles
  • Mentored Residency Internship & Professional Portfolio
  • Additional coursework in a Cognate Area
  • Critical Analysis and Research Design
  • Professional Composition Studies
  • Dissertation
  • Educational Leadership Evidence Portfolio
  • Educational Leadership Practicum Project
  • Administrative Leadership Licensure Assessment
  • Annual Review
  • Comprehensive Exam

  • Foundations of Leadership
  • Curriculum and Instruction Strategies
  • Educational Leadership Theory and Policy Analysis
  • The Teacher as Leader
  • Quantitative and Qualitative Research Design
  • Evaluation for Continuous Improvement
  • Diversity and Exceptionality Practice and Theory
  • Additional coursework in a Cognate Area
  • Organizational Leadership
  • Topics in Content Field
  • Ethical, Social, and Spiritual Leadership Principles
  • Mentored Residency
  • Additional coursework in a Cognate Area
  • Critical Analysis and Research Design
  • Professional Composition Studies
  • Dissertation
  • Annual Review
  • Comprehensive Exam

doctorate of education ADMISSION REQUIREMENTS

To apply for the Carson-Newman education specialist program, please follow these steps:

When you have reserved your seat in the program, complete these steps: 

The admission requirements for Fall 2023 are as follows:

— GPA of 3.3 from Graduate studies and a Scholarly Writing Sample:

  • Choice 1: Thesis or published writing (preferred and accepted as is)
  • Choice 2: See prompt below (rubric will be used for scoring)

 — Two references (two professional/academic)

 — Professional experience in an educational environment (3 years minimum)

  • Teaching license
  • Other proof of experience if from a non-licensed environment

 — GRE will be optional

Submit a sample of scholarly writing you have completed in the past. APA-formatted master’s research or thesis is preferred.

If you have a valid Professional Educators License, please submit a copy of your certificate to the Graduate Information Office by fax (800-504-7618) or by email to

Upcoming Information Meetings

To discover more about the EdS program, join us for an information meeting in your local area or online. We’ll discuss the application process, financial aid, payment plans and any specific questions you may have. In-person meetings run approximately 30 minutes, and online meetings run approximately 20 minutes. We’re also available for one-on-one virtual meetings at your convenience. 

RSVP for one of our scheduled meetings, or contact the Graduate Information Office to schedule an individual meeting. 

You may register for local area, or online meetings by clicking “RSVP” next to your desired time.

Face-to-face meetings run approximately 30 minutes. Online meetings run approximately 20 minutes. During these meetings, we will discuss the application process, financial aid, payment plans, and any specific questions that you may have.

You can also email Chris Smith to have a Student Information Packet emailed to you, and have any questions answered by our admission counselors. 

For questions please contact the Graduate Information Office.




$570 per credit hour + $50 per credit hour technology fee

Graduate students at C-N may also be eligible for federal and state financial aid. Student loan payments may be deferred until program completion. Additionally, the Teacher Loan Forgiveness program is available for up to $5,000 for graduates who teach for five years in low-income schools and meet other requirements.

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