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Future Students


WKU’s 60-credit-hour, year-round Educational Leadership Doctoral Program focuses on meeting the needs of practicing professionals to develop leadership skills in cross-disciplinary settings. Students are typically full-time employed and fit our coursework around their busy lives. Our cohort schedule is based on completing at least 6 hours per semester (spring, summer, fall) each year. Fall and Spring entering cohorts will be offered online and special closed Summer cohorts will employ a hybrid format, utilizing face-to-face meetings with additional online meetings/coursework. Students continually enrolling three semesters per year and staying on track with their cohort should be able to complete all coursework including dissertation hours within 3.5 calendar years.

Applicants for Spring 2021 admission will be part of an online offering of the program, with the possibility of a week-long in-person intensive course during one of the summer semesters. We are offering a hybrid closed cohort for P-12 educators in Summer 2021 focusing on Leading Diverse Learners. For future applicants beyond this summer, we will offer one regular online cohort enter each fall semester along with periodical summer closed cohort offerings.


Admission Requirements

Intended candidates for the degree are individuals who have completed at least a master's degree (or other appropriate graduate degree), have demonstrated leadership capacity within their organizational settings, and/or are committed to enhancing their abilities to learn and to enhance the educational missions of their organizations and communities.                               

Program admission is based on a holistic evaluation of the candidate's application file, which must include:  

  1. Transcripts of all undergraduate and graduate course work;                                                                                                                   
  2. Documentation of a master's degree (or other graduate degree) from an institution accredited by a nationally recognized accreditation organization;                                                                                                                                                               
  3. Completed application;                                                                                                                                                           
  4. Current (within 1 year of application deadline) resume or vita;                                                                                                                         
  5. An in-depth personal statement including qualifications, rationale, and goals related to pursuing the WKU Ed.D. program;
  6. Three current (within 1 year of application deadline) letters of recommendation from persons in a position to evaluate the applicant's potential for success in a doctoral program; and                                                                                               
  7. Submission of GRE scores. Those students who cannot provide scores or have never taken the GRE may be considered for admission through an alternative process. Contact the program director for more information.
  8. Submission of a writing sample (requested during the admission review process) if applicants cannot provide GRE scores, took the GRE without the Analytical Writing portion, or if Analytic Writing score falls below preferred minimum.                                                 

International students who apply must submit the following additional information for admission consideration:

  1. Evidence of ability to communicate in English (as evidenced by a minimum of 570 on the paper based TOEFL, a minimum of 88 on the iBT TOEFL, a minimum of 7.0 on the IELTS; or a degree from an institution with English as the language of instruction).
  2. Evidence of adequate financial resources

*For Spring Online cohort admission, the application deadline is November 1.

*For P-12 Closed Summer Cohort admission, the application deadline is March 1.

*For Spring cohort admission, the application deadline is November 1.*


Tuition Information

The tuition rate for the program is based on current WKU graduate tuition rates. Information about tuition is available at the following link: Tuition and Fee Schedules 

Potential financial resources include:

  • Fellowships
  • Scholarships
  • Student loans
  • Tuition waiver for credits obtained by P-12 teachers providing supervision of student teachers/interns
  • Tuition credit waivers for state employees
  • Employer/district matching contracts and/or professional development funds
  • Contracted organizational incentive discounts
  • Personal funds
  • Graduate Student Research Grants

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 Last Modified 10/9/20