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Ed.D. Design and Program of Study

The Ed.D. in Executive Leadership program is based on an accelerated, hybrid model designed around a rigorous multidisciplinary program of study in executive leadership.

Design of the Ed.D. Program

Program Design

The program embraces a philosophy of leadership for public good and social justice based on five interlocking tenets: diversity, achievement, compassion, knowledge, and service. Ed.D. candidates become critical researchers with refined leadership skills to address real-world leadership challenges and opportunities.

Fisher provides an accelerated, rigorous, multidisciplinary, and highly supportive program that incorporates cutting-edge learning technologies, innovative teaching, applied research, and customized student services. The program is ideal for managers and executives working in communities such as education, health care, business, public administration, and other human service sectors.

In a hybrid format, candidates meet once a month. Courses are offered sequentially, organized by topical themes, and aligned with New York State, national, and institutional leadership standards. Field experiences are aligned with coursework to support the integration of theory and practice. The program includes professional development opportunities and seminars conducted by local, state, and national experts in the field of leadership. The cohort model reflects a supportive and social learning environment.

Candidates admitted to the program are required to register for six credits for the first semester and are required to register for nine credits for each of the next six consecutive semesters, including the summer sessions. This accelerated program can be completed in 28 months.

Curriculum Design

The curriculum is based on:

  • Leadership competencies and best practices.
  • Integrated coursework and dissertation research throughout the curriculum.
  • Active learning through hands-on experience and experimentation within small groups.
  • Personalized and customizable learning opportunities through three field experiences.

Instructional Delivery System

The curriculum is supported by a unique instructional approach that integrates theory with practice by using multidisciplinary research, case studies, and field experiences. Guest lecturers include successful practitioners and field experts. Fisher faculty and field mentors provide seasoned experience to develop successful leaders.

Field Experiences offer candidates the opportunity to develop personalized learning that meets their leadership interests and needs as well as those of their organization. The field experiences pair candidates with an executive mentor to work on research or leadership projects, prepare for the demands of the dissertation, or provide additional credentials in executive leadership coaching, board leadership, and the NYSED School District Leadership (SDL) certification.

Guided Dissertation Seminars are designed to support candidates in the successful completion of their dissertations. Candidates start working on their dissertations from the first course. Dissertation committee meetings are held once a month to provide support throughout the program.