This website uses cookies to understand how you use the website and to improve your experience. By continuing to use the website, you accept the University of New England’s use of cookies and similar technologies. To learn more about our use of cookies and how to manage your browser cookie settings, please review our Privacy Notice.


Education (Doctor of Education in Educational Leadership)

Doctor of Education with Concentration in Educational Leadership

College of Arts and Sciences

Department of Education

Michelle Collay


The mission of the Department of Education is to develop - through research, service, and innovative teaching - reflective practitioners and leaders who are competent and caring lifelong learners.

Four guiding principles are used in development and implementation of our courses and programs.  Our courses foster rigorous minds, compassionate hearts, reflective stances and competent demonstration.

Degree Description

The Online Doctoral Program in Educational Leadership, with a focus on Transformative Leadership, admits cohorts on a semi-annual basis.

This program provides current and aspiring administrative and instructional leaders in diverse settings (e.g., education, health, non-profits, NGOs, public and private organizations and agencies, etc.) with the attitudes, knowledge, experience, and skills needed to transform their organizations through the effective use of human and technological resources.

This is a three-year program requiring completion of 13 required 8 week, 3 credit courses and a 12 credit dissertation representing a total of 51 credits (a maximum of 6 credits can be transferred from another post Masters program). The program (including dissertation) will be completed entirely online with no residency requirement.


Requirements for the Doctor of Education program include but are not limited to:

  • The potential to improve practice through application of new knowledge and skills.
  • Regular access to an environment in which you can apply course concepts and strategies. (If you are not currently employed, you must have an organizational setting where you can try out the transformational leadership ideas we will discover and discuss.)
  • The ability to pursue challenging online graduate study.
  • Sufficient computer skills to navigate the worldwide web and effectively participate in an on-line program.

Academic requirements to include but not limited to:
Completion of a Master of Science or Arts degree from a regionally accredited institution



  • Applications for admission are submitted through UNE’s online application only.  Cohorts are currently admitted in the Fall and Spring terms.
  • Submission of the following to the Office of Online Worldwide Learning, 716 Stevens Avenue, Portland, ME, 04103: 
    • A current resume or curricula vita
    • An application essay with a maximum of 1200 words, following APA format demonstrating academic writing, including references to peer reviewed scholarly work, to include but not limited to the following:
      • Why you  value the study and practice of transformational leadership
      • Description of your leadership experiences
      • Lessons learned from your leadership experience, focusing on questions that are worthy of further investigation
      • Academic and professional background that supports your candidacy to pursue this unique program of study
      • Initial thoughts on the line of research and institutional context in which you wish to pursue or apply academic principles and concepts
  • Three (3) letters of recommendation which focus on personal, professional, and academic qualifications for completion of a doctoral level program
  • Official transcripts from ALL colleges and universities attended
  • Completion of a faculty interview, by invitation only, after application file has been reviewed by the department admissions committee
  • Interviews are granted to qualified applicants upon invitation by the EdD Program Admissions Committee only, and are required for admission to the program. (Interviews will be conducted via Skype or telephone.)
  • Applications received by the respective deadlines will be given full consideration.  Applications submitted after the deadlines will be reviewed on a space available basis only.
  • Admissions are rolling and decisions are made by the program admissions committee as candidates are interviewed and will continue until the program starts or the class is full.
  • International applicants and applicants with international degrees must have their transcripts evaluated for degree and grade equivalency to that of a regionally accredited US institution.  See International Admissions
  • All applicants to UNE must be able to understand and communicate in English to be admitted to the university.  UNE accepts several methods of English Proficiency, see International Admissions.  English Proficiency requirement must be completed at the time of application.

For additional information on the admissions process and requirements, please access the Doctor of Education website.

advanced standing

No credit will be awarded for advanced standing.


transfer credit

  • Up to 6 credits of graduate coursework may be transferred into the EdD program
  • Syllabus must provide clear evidence that the course is comparable to the EdD required course
  • Course may not have been completed as requirement for another degree program

experiential learning
No credit will be awarded to students for experiential learning.

Policy exceptions

The Doctor of Education program and the EdD Admissions Committee in collaboration with the Office of Graduate and Professional Admissions reserve the right to make exceptions to the admissions criteria and to make changes or exceptions to policies and procedures, on a case by case basis, when it deems such a decision is necessary and appropriate.

Transfer Credit

If approved, up to 6 credits of graduate coursework may be transferred into the Ed. D.  program. The syllabus of the course must provide clear evidence that the course is comparable to the Ed. D. required course.  Requests for approval of transfer should be submitted to the Doctoral Program Director. 


The criteria for all courses in the Ed. D. program are straightforward with consistent standards applied throughout the curriculum. In general, these include, but are not limited to:

All assignments are to be completed in a timely manner with appropriate accuracy, detail, thought and reflection fitting of doctoral-level degree candidates. All assignments (done in writing or with other media applications) are graded on the basis of faculty assessment of your ability to accurately apply concepts from readings, organization, and mechanics.

All academic work to be assessed and graded by faculty mentors is based on the following schema:

High Pass (HP):  Work that exceeds all or most of the criteria noted above, and which reflects exceptional command and display of all or most required elements. As a profession, we need to recognize those individuals whose academic work is truly exceptional.  To assure the high level of professionalism inherent in graduate level high education, the grade of "High Pass" is reserved for exceptionally strong academic performance. Only students who demonstrate consistently superior performance will be recognized with the "High Pass" grade.

Pass (P):  Work that meets all requirements and expectations as specified in assignments, and is fully satisfactory in every respect;  Academic work that meets the criteria defined by course rubrics or scoring guides may result in less than an "High Pass" (or its numerical equivalent on assignments).  Students who meet the minimal criteria of a rubric (but no more) are demonstrating a lower level of proficiency compared to those who do work that goes beyond the basic requirements in course assignments, writing, expression of ideas, and integrated information.

Low Pass (LP): Work that does not meet all requirements and expectations, and while satisfactory in certain respects, reflects marginal quality in other key elements.

Minimal Grade Standard and Academic Progress

Candidates may proceed to subsequent courses in the curriculum with one Low Pass grade or below.  A second Low Pass (or below) course grade may result in termination from the doctoral program. For those needing to report course completion status to employers, a Pass equates to a B or better.

Academic Appeals

The procedure for Academic Appeal is fully described in the UNE CAS Student Handbook located in the Student Life website.

Curricular Requirements
Courses Credits
EDU 801 - Preparation for Transformative Leadership 3
EDU 802 - Qualitative Research Methods 3
EDU 803 - Interpreting Empirical Data 3
EDU 804 - Technology and Educational Transformation 3
EDU 805 - Managing Change 3
EDU 806 - Policy Analysis 3
EDU 807 - Enacting Transformative Leadership 3
EDU 808 - Research Team Project A 3
EDU 809 - Research Team Project B 3
EDU 810 - Ethical Leadership 3
EDU 811 - Diagnosing Organizational Dynamics 3
EDU 812 - Dissertation Seminar 3
EDU 813 - The Politics of Change 3
EDU 814 - 817 - Dissertation 12
Learning Outcomes

Ed. D. Educational Leadership General Program Goals 

  • Prepare leaders who are future-focused and capable of fostering innovation and change
  • Promote a continuing cadre of educators who maintain active connections and collaboration with one another, with schools, communities and professional groups
  • Establish a higher education program that is technologically sophisticated, educationally effective and academically rigorous
  • Build a national reputation based upon transformative action research
  • Provide each candidate with a carefully selected faculty mentoring team contributing actively to the candidate’s progress with their program of study, their research, and their dissertation, beyond what is usually available with a single advisor 

Ed. D. Educational Leadership Learning Outcomes

  • Participate fully and responsibly in supportive and action based learning environments of authentic value for colleagues in K-12 education, community college, health, business,  and other sectors
  • Develop and utilize transformative institutional processes to foster, assess the results, and respond to the reported analysis for continued systemic change.   
  • Use technology for research collaboration and dissertation development among colleagues and faculty (e.g., web/videoconferencing)
  • Fully utilize an integrated curriculum that fuses discreet elements of each candidate’s program of study into a coherent whole
  • Fully utilize online search tools and databases to identify research studies and other relevant resources
  • Participate in virtual seminars and conferences building a professional learning community
  • Employ problem and case-based learning strategies extensively in courses and dissertation 
  • Write and successfully defend a field-based dissertation. 
Academic Policy

Timeline for Completion

A student who has not completed the Doctoral Program within five (5) years will be administratively withdrawn from the program and be required to apply for readmission.

Leave of Absence

Students may take one 8 week term leave of absence per academic year (3 terms) but must enroll for the subsequent term to remain on track for program completion. The course must be made up the next time it is offered. Students may take no more than two course-long leaves of absence within the five-year limit in the Doctoral Program. The required Request for Leave of Absence form must be filed prior to the beginning of the student's leave.  Any request for a leave of absence must be approved by the Doctoral Program Director.  Application for readmission is not necessary if the student returns as planned; however, the student who does not return at the specified time will be administratively withdrawn and will be subject to readmission procedures. It is the responsibility of the student to contact the Doctoral Program Director to indicate a change of plans. Policy on leave of absence tuition credit is found in the respective Financial Information sections of the website.

Dismissal from the Program

Termination from the Program will occur when the Graduate Program Director and Chair of the Education Department become aware of one of the following:

  • Surrender of a professional license in any jurisdiction for disciplinary reasons.
  • Documented academic dishonesty (Note this also includes course online postings and email communications with faculty and staff. Students are advised that their behavior while participating in the Program should exemplify the ethical behavior of a professional educator with respect to all communications.)
  • Serious reservations identified on the Professional Performance Student Self-Assessment and Review instrument.
  • Academic failure (see “Minimal Grade Standard and Academic Progress”.)


Students who have withdrawn from the program must reapply to the program if they wish to continue their studies. The application procedures, academic policies, and program requirements that are in effect at the time of readmission will apply.  Students who re-enroll following withdrawal will have their previous coursework evaluated for applicability to the existing academic requirements. Coursework that is more than three years old will not be accepted for credit in the program.  Older courses that have been revised or eliminated from the program offerings will not be accepted upon re-admission.

Students who have been administratively withdrawn from the program may petition for re-admission after a full semester has elapsed. The petition letter must provide a justification for re-admission that addresses how past issues have been resolved and will not re-occur. In addition, a letter of recommendation is required from the student's work supervisor that attests to their ability to successfully complete a graduate program. Both letters should be sent electronically to the UNE program director prior to applying for re-admission.

Academic Procedures

Procedure for reporting and review of alleged academic dishonesty in the College of Arts and Sciences.

A course instructor who believes a student has engaged in academic dishonesty shall 

  1. notify the student in writing of the suspicion of academic dishonesty,
  2. report the alleged incident to his or her program director,
  3. provide the program director with a written account of the incident, including all relevant documentation.
  4. program director notifies the department chair and the College of Arts and Sciences (CAS) Dean’s Office

The instructor may include a recommendation for the appropriate sanction (the minimum sanction is a failure on the assignment in question).

The department chair shall confer with the CAS Dean's Office to determine if the student is a repeat offender, review the material provided by the instructor, and notify the accused student in writing or e-mail of the charge of academic dishonesty. The student must reply within 5 days of receiving the communication from the chair. The program director will then communicate in writing with the accused student to discuss the charge.

After reviewing the documentation and communicating with the student, the program director and department chair will provide:

  • all relevant documentation,
  • a description of his or her decision on the veracity of the charge and, if necessary,
  • a recommendation of an appropriate sanction to the CAS Dean's Office within 5 days of meeting with the student.

If the student does not reply to the program director’s request to discuss the charge, then the program director will proceed without input from the student within 10 days of receiving the material from the course instructor. 

If the program director and department chair conclude that the student has not committed an act of dishonesty, the department chair must

  • communicate in writing with the course instructor to determine an appropriate course of action,
  • forward the appropriate documentation to the CAS Dean’s Office, and
  • inform the student and course instructor of the program director’s decision.

If the program director and department chair conclude that the student has committed an act of dishonesty, the Associate Dean will review the relevant documentation, the program director’s and department chair’s conclusion, and the recommended sanction. If the Associate Dean disagrees with the conclusion and/or the recommended sanction, the Associate Dean will meet with the department chair to determine an appropriate course of action. The Associate Dean will then notify in writing the department chair, the faculty member, and the student of the Associate Dean’s final decision and the sanction, if appropriate, within 5 days of receiving the material from the department chair.

Financial Information

Tuition and Fees

Tuition and fees for subsequent years may vary. Other expenses include books and housing. For more information regarding tuition and fees, please consult the Financial Information section of this catalog.

Notice and Responsibilities Regarding this Catalog

This Catalog documents the academic programs, policies, and activities of the University of New England for the 2014-2015 academic year. The information contained herein is accurate as of date of publication May 30, 2014.

The University of New England reserves the right in its sole judgment to make changes of any nature in its programs, calendar, or academic schedule whenever it is deemed necessary or desirable, including changes in course content, the rescheduling of classes with or without extending the academic term, canceling of scheduled classes or other academic activities, in any such case giving such notice thereof as is reasonably practicable under the circumstances.

While each student may work closely with an academic advisor, he or she must retain individual responsibility for meeting requirements in this catalog and for being aware of any changes in provisions or requirements.