Bellarmine University / Admissions / Graduate / Doctor of Education in K-12 District Leadership (Ed.D)

Doctor of Education in K-12 District Leadership (Ed.D)

The Bellarmine University Annsley Frazier Thornton School of Education offers the Doctor of Education in K-12 District Leadership (Ed.D.) degree with superintendent certificate focuses on developing highly skilled education leaders who will act as “change agents” in improving the education of children living in poverty circumstances. The Ed.D. program coursework is focused on preparing candidates with advanced knowledge in educational research practices, assets and challenges of children living in high poverty contexts, and an understanding of innovative education solutions. Additionally, the Ed.D. program is designed for applicants who have successfully completed an Ed.S. degree without a superintendent endorsement (candidates with a superintendent endorsement should consider our traditional Ph.D. program). This Ed.D. program consists of an additional 36 hours of coursework at the doctoral level which, when combined with the 30 credit hours of the Ed.S. program, gives each candidate a total of 66 hours beyond a master’s degree.

The goal of this program is to prepare candidates who have successfully completed the Ed.S. degree and are seeking both superintendent certification and a doctoral degree. The program is designed to prepare educational leaders who, by employing continuous reflection of their own practice and advanced knowledge of educational research, will use their expertise to improve student learning and achievement by working in formal and informal ways with district personnel and the larger community to augment the professional skills of colleagues, to strengthen the culture of the district through learning communities, and to improve the quality of instruction through research and data-based decision-making.

A candidate in this program will be challenged to reflect continuously upon: leadership components, coaching and mentoring, analysis of assessment data to impact instruction and district leadership and operational systems, strategies for closing the achievement gap through instructional best practices, the need to address equity and diversity in schools, and collaborative efforts to include colleagues, parents, and the community in comprehensive efforts for school and district improvement. Furthermore, the Ed.D. candidate will promote the success of each student by ensuring a leader-driven management and leadership style that provides the resources necessary for a safe, efficient, and effective learning environment built on equity, adequacy and equality.

Tuition and Fees

See our Graduate Tuition Rates for the most up-to-date information.

Funding Assistance
School districts may apply tuition supports for this program, please contact your school district’s personnel specialist. As a degree seeking student in the Ed.D. program, students should be eligible for federally supported forms of student aid. Financial aid questions should be directed to the Financial Aid Office at Bellarmine University ( or 502.272.7300).

Contact Information

Office of Graduate Admission
502.272.7200 or