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Doctor of Philosophy in Education

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Program Overview

‌In addition to course work that emphasizes the study of leadership, theory, ethics, technology and organizations, program evaluation and research methodologies, the Ph.D. program provides opportunities for development as a research scholar with a research intensive apprenticeship experience. In the final year of the program, Ph.D. students work closely with their faculty mentors in an apprenticeship. While focused on enhancing and expanding the Ph.D. student’s research skills and knowledge, faculty mentors work with their mentees to identify and design apprenticeship activities based on the Ph.D. student’s professional goals and discipline. Some examples of apprenticeship activities include curriculum development, grant writing, conference proposals and presentations, writing for publication, teaching, learning advanced research methods not covered in the program’s four research courses, and leading workshops on topics related to the student’s expertise.

Developed for working professionals, courses are held in a weekend format on Drake University’s campus, so you can continue to work full time. The program is a minimum of 54 credits with no transfer credits accepted.  Students must graduate with a minimum 3.5 GPA.

Course Schedule

Year One
Semester Course Credit Description
Fall DOC 301  Seminar 
Fall DOC 350  Philosophies & Epistemologies in Education 
Spring DOC 345  Advanced Leadership 
Spring DOC 306  Qualitative Research Methods 
Summer DOC 302  Seminar (Ethics, Diversity & Leadership) 
Summer DOC 396  Advanced Qualitative Research 
 Year Two
Semester Course Credit Description
Fall DOC 360  Technology & Organizational Leadership 
Fall  DOC 305  Quantitative Research 
Spring  DOC 395  Advanced Quantitative Research 
Spring  DOC 370  Program Evaluation & Assessment 
      Comprehensive Exams
Summer DOC 390 3 Dissertation Seminar
Summer DOC 399 3 Dissertation Credits
Year Three
Semester Course Credit Description
Fall DOC 380 3 Apprenticeship Credits with Advisor
Fall DOC 399 3 Dissertation Credits
Spring DOC 380 3 Apprenticeship Credits with Advisor
Spring DOC 399 3 Dissertation Credits
Summer DOC 380 3 Apprenticeship Credits with Advisor
Summer DOC 399 3 Dissertation Credits*

*Students enroll for 1 credit of DOC 399 each semester until
dissertation is complete. 


All courses in each of the doctoral programs are taken as a cohort. Cohorts begin each fall. 

Application Process All Doctoral Programs

In order to complete the application process, submit the following:

  • OnlineGraduate Education Application and Electronic Supporting Documents
    • Application 
    • Electronic copy of professional resume/curriculum vitae
    • Electronic copy of a personal statement requesting admission, including reasons for pursuing the doctoral degree, an overview of professional background and goals and a discussion of professional philosophy. Suggested word limit is approximately 500 words.
    • Electronic copy of evidence of significant scholarly accomplishment, either a completed master’s thesis or other written product that demonstrates ability to write clearly and coherently and to develop a thesis or idea with supporting literature citations.
    • Reference Contacts (additional information provided within online application) 
  • Official transcripts from all previously attended colleges or universities
    • Evidence of 36-graduate credits to include a completed master's degree from an accredited institution and official transcripts for all post-secondary education. It is recommended that applicants have a graduate grade point average of 3.5 or better on a 4.0 scale. Transcripts and other supporting materials are not returned to the applicant and become the property of Drake University.
  • Official report of the Graduate Record Exam (GRE) test scores or the Miller's Analogies Test (MAT). The Drake Writing Competency Exam is not an acceptable testing option for this program.

Online application materials will automatically be forwarded to the School of Education. Please mail transcripts and test scores to:

Coordinator of Graduate Admission
Drake University School of Education
2702 Forest Avenue
Des Moines, Iowa 50311

Additional Application Materials for Ph.D.

In addition to the above items, those applying to the Ph.D. program will need to submit a 1-2 page essay explaining their research interests and reasons for pursuing a research intensive degree.

2017-2018 Drake University Graduate and Professional Programs Catalog

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