SBUBolivar, Missouri Est. 1878

Doctor of Education at Southwest Baptist University

Doctor of Education in Educational Leadership

Course Rotation

The SBU Doctor of Education in Educational Leadership program employs a cohort model. A new cohort begins every fall on the SBU main campus. The unique coursework of the SBU Ed.D. program is designed to provide students with a deep understanding of current leadership theory and practical application relevant to the work place. Student’s thinking will be stretched to look at the field of leadership with a new lens for problem-solving and decision-making. The SBU Ed.D. model includes four hours of concentration in the focus area of Business Nonprofit and Entrepreneurship. The coursework consists of 24 hours of course work and a minimum of SIX hours of directed research.

Track One

Candidates holding the Educational Specialist Degree in School Administration/Superintendency or School Administration will complete the following courses for the Ed. D.:

First Semester (6 credit hours)

Educational Advocacy (3 credit hours)
Advanced Research (3 credit hours)

Second Semester (7 credit hours)

Non-Profit Financial Management (2 credit hours)
Organization Consulting Practice (2 credit hours)
Advanced Statistics and Instrument Design (3 credit hours)     

Third Semester (6 credit hours)

Ethics in Personal & Professional Life (3 credit hours)
Leadership in Learning (3 credit hours)

Fourth Semester  (4 credit hours)

Leadership and the Law (3 credit hours)
Symposium Planning and Development (1 credit hours)

Fifth Semester  (4 credit hours)

Education Symposium (1 credit hour)
Written Comprehensive Exam
- Request for Directed Research Committee Proposal Defense may occur anytime after comprehensive exams are passed.
- Research Review Board (RRB) application may be submitted after Directed Research Committee approves proposal.
- Data Collection may occur only after RRB approval.
Directed Research (3 credit hours)

Sixth Semester (3 credits)

Directed Research will be continued on a (3) hour basis until final oral defense before the Directed Research Committee
Writing The Directed Research (6-36 credit hours/12 semesters max.)
Oral Defense of the Directed Research

30 hours minimum (24 credit hours of class work and minimum 6 hours directed research)

Leveling Option for Ed.D. Program

Track Two

Candidates holding the MS in Educational Administration with initial certification as a building level administrator may choose to apply for the Ed.D. Leveling Program. This opportunity allows students to complete required Specialist courses a year prior to actual participation in the Ed.D. courses.

To be considered for acceptance into the Ed.D. program through the Track Two Leveling option, students must do the following:

  1. Students interested in the Ed.D. leveling program shall submit an Ed.D. application and will start Specialist courses for the fall semester. Students will be admitted into Educational Specialist program.
  2. Students will submit additional Ed.D. application materials (see item c) by the deadline of December 1st (those in Ed.Sp. program will be applying for Ed.D. along with those with Ed.Sp.)
  3. Additional application materials for the leveling student: 1) recommendation form from a current instructor (one of the three required recommendation forms) and 2) record of taking the GRE.
  4. By January 31st all Ed.D. applications will be reviewed for consideration. Students seeking Level Two classification along with those candidates who have completed Educational Specialist Degree shall be considered concurrently for the upcoming Ed.D. cohort. Top students (potential levelers and specialist students who have completed all admission requirements) will be selected to participate in the Ed.D. program for the upcoming semester by the Steering Committee based on qualifications defined in the Admissions Handbook. Students will be notified of acceptance by March 1st. Track Two leveling students will be updated in the spring semester to the Track Two Degree Seeking Program and will be admitted into the upcoming fall Ed.D. cohort only have after a degree audit confirms successful completion of all leveling coursework.


The following Track Two Leveling courses are required:

EAD 7003 School District Administration (3 credit hours)
EAD 7013 Personnel Administration (3 credit hours)
EAD 7023 Advanced School Finance (3 credit hours)
EAD 7033 School Planning and Maintenance (3 credit hours)
EAD 7043 Research and Statistics (3 credit hours)
EAD 7072 Internship in Superintendency (2 credit hours)
EAD 7123 The Superintendency (3 credit hours)—20 hours

Upon completion of these courses, student performance will be evaluated and final acceptance into the Ed.D. program will be determined.

Once the Ed.D. courses are complete, the student will be recommended for the advanced principal certificate and the superintendent certificate upon successful completion of the SSA.

Options for those without a Master's Degree in Education Administration

Students with a Master’s degree in an education related field must complete the following course work PRIOR to being considered for the Track Two Leveling Program. (Students must request application into the Specialist program in order for these courses to be eligible for financial aid).

  • A Master’s level research course
  • EAD 6053 School Supervision (3 credit hours)
  • EAD 6014 School Curriculum (4 credit hours)
  • EAD 6024 School Administration (4 credit hours).


Please Note: Students with a teaching certificate who want initial principal certification must take the following additional courses (do note these are NOT required prior to being reviewed for acceptance into the Ed.D program):

  • EAD 6002 Foundations of Educational Administration (2 credit hours)
  • EAD 6062 Internship I (2 credit hours)
  • EAD 6093 Administration of Special Programs (3 credit hours)