Ed.D. in Curriculum & Instruction

The Ed.D. in Curriculum & Instruction is a terminal graduate degree that  prepares graduates for college or university positions in teacher education or for positions within school districts with specific areas of curricular expertise and supervision. The program includes coursework, an internship, and practical experiences to prepare graduates to: (1) produce scholar-practitioner research that adds to the knowledge base of a specific organization and/or program; (2) educate teachers in the areas of curricular expertise and evidence-based practice; and (3) provide effective leadership in the field of teacher education. The degree provides the opportunity for students to include a supporting area of study.

Potential optional areas of emphasis include: Elementary Education, English Education, ESOL, Foreign Language Education, Gifted Education, Instructional Technology, Math Education, Reading Education, Science Education and Social Studies Education and a dual degree partnership with the Darden School of Business.

Prerequisites and Admission Requirements

Students must have an approved master’s degree. Additionally, applicants must have a minimum of three years full-time teaching experience, at least one recommendation from a current supervisor, and GRE scores that meet the Curry School’s minimum entrance requirements for doctoral study (500 Verbal, 600 Quantitative and 4.5 in Analytic Writing OR equivalent scores on the new GRE exam). Applications must include a goal statement and a writing sample from the applicant's masters program.

Application Due Date

December 15

Degree Requirements

It is imperative that students be knowledgeable of Curry School requirements for the Ed.D. as specified in the Graduate Record of the University of Virginia.  The following guidelines are conceived as detailed extensions of the overall Curry School requirements.  Ultimately, a student’s doctoral program committee is responsible for program approval.  Students must maintain the  Ed.D. Record of Progress.  Up to 24 credits from a current master’s degree may be applied toward the Ed.D.  The decision for transfer approval is made in concert with the program committee.

The Ed.D. in Curriculum and Instruction requires a minimum of 78 hours.  There is a 24-semester hour core requirement.  In addition students must take a minimum of 18 semester hours in research and 12 semesters hours of electives or courses in a supporting area—either English Education, Mathematics Education, Reading Education, Science Education, Social Studies Education, Foreign Language Education, or ESOL.  An internship of 12 semester hours must be completed. Students are encouraged to complete their internship in their supporting area.  Of the Curry classes that are required thirty-six hours must be completed after admission to the degree. Students entering the doctoral program with a strong master’s degree can apply up to 24 hours of credit to their doctoral program, provided the program area judges that courses are relevant to the doctoral program.  Students must maintain a Record of Progress that documents progress in the program.

Research Methodology Coursework:

Ed.D. students will take a minimum of 18 hours of research coursework.  Required courses include Foundations of Educational Research, Reading the Research, and Program Evaluation.  Students will also take at least one quantitative class and one qualitative class.
Doctoral Assessments

Assessment of student progress will be continuous and multifaceted during a student’s enrollment.

Student Annual Report:  Each Ed.D. student will complete an annual report describing his or her growth and accomplishments. The report will guide students in reflecting on their own learning and progress and also allow faculty to assess student progress toward program goals.

Preliminary Examination: In the second semester of the first year of study, all full-time Ed.D. students will complete a preliminary exam designed to determine the likelihood of the student’s continued success in doctoral studies.  Part time students will complete the preliminary examination after the completion of 12 credit hours in the program. This exam consists of two parts—a paper on a topic of significance in the field and an in-depth critique of a research report.  In addition an evaluation of the proposed program will be conducted by the examination committee. The Ed.D. Assessment Rubric for Preliminary Examinations will be used to evaluate both the paper and the presentation.

Comprehensive Examination: All students will complete a written comprehensive examination to demonstrate understanding of the knowledge base and methodology in an area of curriculum, teaching, and learning and demonstrate readiness to undertake doctoral capstone research. The examination will be graded independently by at least two faculty members according to the Ed.D. Assessment Rubric for Comprehensive Examinations.

Capstone Project:  All Ed.D. students will complete a capstone proposal and project. The goal of the Ed.D. degree is to prepare practitioner-scholars.  Practitioner-scholars are expected to develop and disseminate knowledge for the improvement of practice by drawing on both experience and systematic inquiry. Given this distinctive role, the purpose of the capstone project is to provide prospective practitioner-scholars with a supervised opportunity to demonstrate the knowledge, skills, and understandings that they have acquired in their course of study. Ed.D. students are expected to identify a problem of importance to practitioners and apply what they have learned in order to address the problem—use-inspired disciplined inquiry. The capstone will build on this inquiry to develop and make recommendations regarding practices, programs and/or policies and will communicate the results of this inquiry and development to appropriate audiences.

EdD Handbook:  This document further explains program requirements.

Funding Opportunities

Departmental funding is available on a competitive basis to full-time students.

Students may apply for federal financial aid, including work-study. Information about federal aid programs, including applying using the FAFSA, can be found through Student Financial Services. Additional financial aid information can be found on Curry's Financial Aid webpage.

Typical Length of Study

Students will ordinarily complete the program in 3 years of full-time study. Some students may take longer to complete requirements, depending on internships and other responsibilities.  Ed.D. students may also study on a part-time basis.  All course work must be Curry delivered. Additionally, part time students must complete at least one academic semester of their program as a full-time graduate student (12 hours).

Semester of Entry:

Students must be enrolled continuously at the University during the fall and spring semesters while working toward the Ed.D. degree. If students are not taking courses or working with a committee they may maintain enrollment by paying a University non-resident fee through the Office of Admission in the Curry School. Failure to maintain continuous enrollment will require students to reapply for admission. Students must be enrolled for dissertation hours during any semester in which they are working with their committee.

Full or Part Time:

This degree can be earned on a full-or part-time basis.

Course Overview

Core Requirements

A minimum of 24 semester hours of coursework is required.  Among courses which could be selected are:

  • EDIS 5055 Models of Instruction
  • EDLF 7390 Differentiating Instruction
  • EDIS 8800 Principles of Curriculum Design
  • EDLF 8430 Evaluation of Teaching
  • EDIS 8820 Advanced Seminar: Curriculum
  • EDLF 8500 Writing for Publication
  • EDIS 8500 Current Research on Teaching
  • EDLF 7230 Curriculum for the Gifted
  • EDIS 8850 Research on Diversity in Teaching and Learning
  • EDLF 5500 K-12 Educational Policy

Coursework in Research

A minimum of 18 semester hours of coursework is required.  Students must take at least 2 quantitative and 2 qualitative classes.  Among the courses which could be considered are:

  • EDLF 7300 Foundations of Ed Research         
  • EDLF 7310 Educational Statistics-Stat I
  • EDIS 7852 Reading the Research                     
  • EDLF 8300 Experimental Design-Stat II
  • EDLF 7402 Program Evaluation                         
  • EDLF 7404 Qualitative Analysis
  • EDLF 8310 Correlation & Regression—Stat III
  • EDLF 8440 Advanced Qual Analysis
  • EDLF 8450 Qualitative Analysis with Computers

Electives OR Coursework in One Supporting Area

A minimum of 12 semester hours is required.  Coursework is determined in concert with your program committee.  Possible supporting areas are:

  • Elementary Education                           
  • English Education
  • Mathematics Education                
  • Science Education             
  • Social Studies Education
  • Foreign Language Education      
  • Second Language Education

Other Requirements

Internship—A minimum of 12 semester hours must be completed.

Preliminary Examination

Comprehensive Examination

Capstone Project—A minimum of 12 semester hours must be completed.

Contact Us

Susan Mintz
Bavaro Hall 315 
(434) 924-3128

Locations Offered

  • Charlottesville

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