Adult & Community Education

The Adult & Community Education (ACE) option is designed for individuals in a variety of educational roles who wish to advance and cultivate their leadership, teaching and research capabilities. This option area focuses on preparing adult and community education professionals to engage with adults in many settings, including the workplace, military training and education, higher education, adult literacy programs, adult basic education, community education, libraries, museums, and social service agencies.


The Adult & Community Education curriculum integrates adult learning theory, instructional methods, foundations of adult education, assessment and evaluation techniques, statistical skills, and research knowledge for effectiveness in a variety of settings. 

The Ed.D. degree in Education with a focus on Adult & Community Education is intended for individuals seeking employment as scholar-practitioners in higher education, nonprofit organizations, consultants, and program administrators in all levels of corporations with training departments. 

The Ph.D. degree in Education with a focus on Adult & Community Education is intended for individuals seeking employment as scholar-researchers in adult education and learning. The Ph.D. emphasizes the study and synthesis of theory and research, and is intended to produce dedicated scholar-researchers committed to the advancement of knowledge and scholarship in adult education. It also provides scholar-practitioners with a strong research methods background that benefits practice.

Career Paths

The Adult & Community Education option uniquely prepares graduates to be:

  • Educational directors for area businesses, industry, government, and military enterprises
  • Directors, coordinators, and grant-writers involved in alternative delivery of programs
  • Researchers in the fields of adult education, adult learning and community education
  • Teaching professors in colleges and universities
  • Consultants serving education, business, industry, government, and military enterprises
  • Educators responsible for all aspects of adult education and community service

Our graduates work in a variety of settings, both locally and nationally. Recent graduates are working in human resources, training and development, higher education, and in nonprofits and student services as trainers, managers, directors, professors and consultants.


  • Deadline to Apply: February 1
  • Program Start: Autumn semester
  • Prerequisites/Pre-major Requirements: Master's degree
  • Minimum Program Hours: 60, post master’s degree
  • Coursework: adult learning, foundations of occupational and adult education, educational research, instructional methods, foundations of doctoral scholarship
  • Other requirements: Dissertation

View the Ed.D. Curriculum Sheet or Ph.D. Curriculum Sheet

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