Program Description

The Education Doctoral Programs prepare scholars who advance education research and practice and maintain the integrity and vitality of the profession. Our graduates are stewards of the discipline, individuals entrusted with preserving, creating, and applying knowledge in education and with communicating educational knowledge to others.

North Dakota State University offers both the Ph.D. and Ed.D. degrees in Education, with an emphasis in Adult and Community Education, Institutional Effectiveness, or Organizational Learning and Leadership. The Ph.D. emphasizes the study and synthesis of theory and research. The purpose of the Ph.D. is to produce dedicated scholar-researchers committed to the advancement of knowledge and scholarship in the field and scholar-practitioners with a strong depth in research preparation for practice. The Ed.D. degree focuses on translating theory and research into practice, and has the larger goal of preparing scholar-practitioners who will be well-informed, credible leaders in the field.


The Adult and Community Education curriculum is designed to provide the knowledge, skills, and experiences required for advancing the nature, function, and scope of adult learning in all educational settings. This program prepares graduates to be leaders in profit and non-profit industries. Graduates become professors of adult or community education, leaders of non-profit organizations, and consultants for training development programs.


The Institutional Effectiveness curriculum is designed to provide the knowledge, skills, and experiences needed for understanding institutional performance in all educational settings. This program focuses on the role of assessment, evaluation, and other analysis techniques needed to support institutional planning, policy formation, and decision-making. Graduates become assessment directors at post-secondary institutions and education consultants.


The Organizational Learning and Leadership curriculum is designed to provide the knowledge, skills, and experiences necessary for promoting organizational change in all educational settings. This program equips graduates to become effective leaders in educational contexts by integrating leadership theory with practice. Graduates become administrators in K-12 and postsecondary schools, museums, and youth development organizations.