Curriculum

Study Format Online, On Campus

This doctoral program is offerred 100% online and through cohorts on campus.

Program Length 61-67 credits*

 

*INTERNATIONAL STUDENTS: In addition to the base program curriculum listed below, international students attending face-to-face classes on the CUC campus are required to take the Seminar in Higher Education, a 3-credit course.

Candidates seeking the Superintendent Endorsement of the State of Illinois must complete the courses in the program marked with an asterisk (*).

Educational Leadership Specialization

EdD and PhD Non Licensure

Providing Instructional Support

This course aims to instruct teacher leaders about the distributed nature of professional development; provide a theoretical understanding about concepts of induction, retention, and resilience; help manage the anxiety common to new teachers; and develop and apply a teacher support plan based on a case study of their choosing among several case studies provided in the course. These theories and strategies will be practically implemented through the development of an individual action plan that focuses on providing instructional support for teachers.

Leading School-Based Professional Learning Communities

This course addresses leading school‐based learning communities and their role in student achievement and school improvement.

Strategies of Educational Leadership

This course addresses leadership theories, practices and standards that lead to improvement in public and private schools.

Human Resource Administration and Bargaining

This course addresses the functions of human resource planning, recruitment, selection, placement, development and related legal issues and human relations.

Educational Finance

This course addresses the public values, policy issues, specialized terminology and practical problems associated with the generation, distribution and internal allocation and control of education revenues and expenditures.

Supervisory Theory and Practice

This course provides candidates with the opportunity to develop supervisory skills for supervision, evaluation and professional development of school leaders and district office personnel.

Legal Issues for School Districts

This course addressed legal issues affecting school districts in Illinois. Federal and state case law will be reviewed and applied to legal problems that confront school administrators.

School/District Improvement Using Data Analysis

This course addresses school district and building leadership roles in creating an infrastructure and systems that focus on school/district improvement. Particular emphasis is on school improvement as it relates to accountability demonstrated through assessment design, data gathering and analysis. Candidates will learn how to utilize data to improve curriculum, instruction, multiple forms of assessment, and incorporate technology to meet the needs of the 21st century learner.

Organization and Community Partnerships

This course is an examination of the nature of organizational development in order to build effective community outreach and partnerships. Topics explored include organizational and community culture, climate, political structures, community groups and other influencing factors, which impact organizational decision‐making.

Research-Based Decision Making

This course addresses the analysis of the methodological and statistical components of existing research data to enhance and facilitate the educational decision making process. Particular attention is given to applications regarding issues of educational policy.

EdD and Ph.D Licensure*

Strategies of Educational Leadership*

This course explores the theories, practices and standards of educational leadership with practical applications to the Superintendent Endorsement. The field of educational leadership is continuously being redefined in response to changing school contexts, policies and cultural realities. Focus is on the analysis of instructional leadership skills and behavior that lead to the improvement of instruction in public and private schools. Reading, scholarly writing, class discussions, project-based real life assignments and personal reflection about emerging issues in education are strongly emphasized.

Research-Based Decision Making

This course addresses the analysis of the methodological and statistical components of existing research data to enhance and facilitate the educational decision making process. Particular attention is given to applications regarding issues of educational policy.

Managing Illinois School District Finances*

This course examines all aspects of fiscal management in a school district including finance, human resources, and auxiliary services. Students will identify effective strategies to provide district resources to promote student performance. Students will identify and analyze how district resources can be allocated to provide for and advocate for every child.

Supervisory Theory and Practice*

This course examines the theory and implementation of best practices related to the supervision and professional development of leaders at the school and district levels. Particular emphasis is given to the role of the superintendent in the supervision, evaluation and professional learning platform of all school leaders in diverse school communities. Teacher performance data and district improvement efforts are linked and a review of the district’s professional learning plan is addressed.

Legal and Human Resource Issues of School Districts*

This course examines all aspects of managing legal and human resource issues in Illinois public school districts including the recruitment, selection, evaluation and supervision of high quality staff.

School/District Improvement Using Data Analysis*

This course addresses school district and building leadership roles in creating an infrastructure and systems that focus on school/district improvement. Particular emphasis is on school improvement as it relates to accountability demonstrated through assessment design, data gathering and analysis. Candidates will learn how to utilize data to improve curriculum, instruction, multiple forms of assessment, and incorporate technology to meet the needs of the 21st century learner.

Organization and Community Partnerships

This course is an examination of the nature of organizational development in order to build effective community outreach and partnerships. Topics explored include organizational and community culture, climate, political structures, community groups and other influencing factors, which impact organizational decision‐making.

Superintendent Internship I: The Superintendent as Instructional Leader* (16 weeks)

This is the first in a three internship course sequence required for superintendent candidates under the new requirement of ISBE 23 Illinois Administrative Code 33. This curricular focus is the superintendent as instructional leader. Candidates are required to complete field based clinical experiences that prepare them to lead the curricular, instructional and assessment programs in a school district. Prerequisite: Successful completion of Superintendent Internship I

Superintendent Internship II: The Superintendent as Change Agent* (16 weeks)

This is the second in a three internship course sequence required for superintendent candidates under the new requirement of ISBE 23 Illinois Administrative Code 33. This curricular focus is the superintendent as change agent. Candidates are required to complete field based clinical experiences that prepare them to lead the curricular, instructional and assessment programs in a school district. Prerequisite: Successful completion of Superintendent Internship I

Superintendent Internship III: The Superintendent as HR and Resources Manager* (16 weeks)

This is the third in a three internship course sequence required for superintendent candidates under the new requirement of ISBE 23 Illinois Administrative Code 33. This curricular focus is the superintendent as human and district resources manager. Candidates are required to complete field based clinical experiences that prepare them to lead the curricular, instructional and assessment programs in a school district. Prerequisite: Successful completion of Superintendent Internship II.

Foundations/Philosophy/Ethics

Organizational Change

Application of change theory to large and small organizations. Leadership strategies for successful change implementation.

Philosophy of Scientific Knowledge (PhD only)

This course provides an orientation to the nature, uses and limitations of science with the aim of achieving and understanding of the variety of approaches to research design and developing conceptual frameworks. With regard to the metatheory of knowledge, particular attention will be paid to the following topics: the relationship between theory and observations, the role of the researcher’s values in knowledge generation, how the research conceptualizes the relationship between researcher and subjects, the standards that are used to appraise theories, the theory of reality (ontology) and of how to know that reality (epistemology) that underlies critical theories, and how different methods of data gathering and data analysis influence the generation of scientific knowledge.

Philosophical and Theoretical Foundations of Leadership (EdD only)

Study of the philosophical and theoretical foundations of education, including analysis of the aims and goals of education, processes of attainment, content and curriculum, and the socialization function of education and schooling. Develop an understanding of the intersections between theory/philosophy, ethical perspectives and the development of policy, practice and institutions.

Policy Analysis*

Educational policy-making at the macro (national, regional and state) and micro (local and institutional) levels. Selected educational policies.

Ethics for Educational Leaders*

Ethical theories and practice of school district leadership.

Research for the EdD, Practitioner Track

Research Design

Principles of research theory, methods, inquiry, problem formulation, data collection, literature searches, and ethical considerations. Emphasis on how to design a doctoral-level research study.

Qualitative Research

An examination and application of qualitative research approaches with focus on research design, the role of the researcher, data collection and analysis, and writing from a qualitative perspective.

Quantitative Analysis

An introduction to quantitative analysis of data. Statistical software will be used to explore descriptive and inferential statistics using both non-parametric and parametric techniques.

Research and Statistics for the PhD, Researcher Track

Research Design

Principles of research theory, methods, inquiry, problem formulation, data collection, literature searches, and ethical considerations. Emphasis on how to design a doctoral-level research study.

Qualitative Research

An examination and application of qualitative research approaches with focus on research design, the role of the researcher, data collection and analysis, and writing from a qualitative perspective.

Quantitative Analysis

An introduction to quantitative analysis of data. Statistical software will be used to explore descriptive and inferential statistics using both non-parametric and parametric techniques.

Mixed Methods Research

This course explores the theory, design, and application of mixed methods research.

Select one:

Advanced Topics in Statistics

An introduction to advanced statistical concepts including multivariate analysis, linear models, hierarchical linear models, factor analysis and data management. Students will use statistical software packages and will learn to write basic syntax for custom analysis.

Advanced Topics in Qualitative Analysis

Prepares students to utilize naturalistic inquiry in their own research, most immediately, the dissertation experience. Students will be able to reflect on choices of inquiry paradigms, the goodness of fit between the problem and the approach chosen to explore it, the selection of appropriate instruments, and the role of the writer in the presentation of findings.

Comprehensive Exam and Dissertation

  • Comprehensive Exam. The first part of this two-part exam is an assessment of the student's theoretical and practical knowledge of leadership. The second part of the exam is a review of the literature. Once a student passes the comprehensive exam, they go on to working with their committee on the dissertation paper.
  • Dissertation. Students must register for each semester they are working on their dissertation.
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