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EdD in Transformational Leadership

At every place of work, in every industry, employees need to commit to education. It’s through continuous learning that companies grow, flourish, and adapt to changes in the marketplace. It’s how they reach collective objectives and remain sustainable. And it’s why transformational leaders who can see the big picture are absolutely necessary. If you’re looking to get into an administrative or leadership role to help your organization achieve its goals and purpose, you’ll find immense value in Concordia’s online EdD in Transformational Leadership.

Alongside candidates who could range from military and church personnel to nurse educators and business leaders, you’ll learn why it’s important to foster an environment where creativity, inventiveness, and entrepreneurship are expectations. You’ll develop the understanding and skills needed to make decisions that lead to improved program performance, and you’ll uncover your true leadership style.

Through intensive curricula, scholarly discussions, and a nurturing faculty of highly regarded instructors, our EdD program produces leaders who inspire ethical change. Each of our five fully online, leadership-focused concentrations incorporates a unique Virtual Residency component, follows a four-phase schedule of eight-week classes, and is limited in class size to support quality and collaboration. Accredited, nonprofit, and private, Concordia has been developing leaders since 1905.

Step 1 of 3: What type of student are you?

Step 2 of 3: What would you like to study?

Portland Campus: Classes taught entirely at Concordia University-Portland.

Accelerated Online: Classes taught 100% online. MEd programs complete in 1 year. EdD programs complete in 3 years.

Flex Online: For online students who want to go at a slower pace - MEds can be completed in 18-36 months.

Hybrid: Students take some classes online and some at Concordia University-Portland.

Step 3 of 3: Get info about this program

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100% online
100% online with a Virtual Residency
Updated curriculum
Current and relevant curriculum
NWCCU
Accredited by the Northwest Commission on Colleges and Universities (NWCCU)
Respected
Concordia is one of the most respected names in learning today
Time to completion
Complete in 3 years
10,000 alumni
Over 10,000 College of Education alumni
Faith-based university
Nonprofit, private, and faith-based university

OBJECTIVES

EdD in Transformational Leadership Concentration Objectives

In addition to meeting the goals and objectives set forth for Concordia’s doctoral program, the Transformational Leadership concentration develops transformative leaders who:

  • Demonstrate the ability to perform accurate program evaluations
  • Understand the strengths and weaknesses of different leadership styles as exhibited by transformational leaders past and present
  • Obtain an intimate understanding of the unique challenges and opportunities of leading a mission-driven organization (MDO)
  • Develop and institute strategies for effectively disseminating knowledge throughout an organization
  • Know how to use persuasive communication and collaboration to achieve shared organizational goals
  • Foster a supportive organizational culture that values change and quality improvement

The Transformational Leadership concentration is ideal for:

Those working in K-12 education, business, organization, and church leadership and management; and leaders in community organizations, nonprofits, professional development, consulting, and seminars and conferences.

3 TO PHD®

The 3 to PhD campus is home to our College of Education as well as Faubion School—and its 800+ pre-Kindergarten through 8th grade students. This means that as an MAT student, your classrooms are just down the hall from their classrooms – creating a highly contextualized learning experience.

The 3 to PhD educational model powerfully demonstrates not only innovation in practice but also compassion in action—a collaborative effort to strengthen the community from the ground up.

READ MORE ABOUT 3toPhD

Earn your EdD in Transformational Leadership in three years.

CORE & CONCENTRATION COURSES

Transformational Leadership Year 1
21 credits

The courses in this sequence (EDDC 700 through 705), Scholarly Writing, provide opportunities for doctoral candidates to develop and refine their scholarly writing during the first year of the education doctorate in order to become successful writers both during and beyond their academic career. Course topics include writing article abstracts and analyses, critiques, and literature surveys. Strategies for reading critically, organizing and developing thoughts, choosing appropriate vocabulary, and revising their own writing are also covered. Candidates will practice concrete strategies for drafting and revising texts and will develop greater metacognitive awareness of their writing processes. Through peer editing experiences, candidates will develop the ability to be thoughtful readers of their peers’ writing. Candidates write and revise various genres of scholarly writing during the course sequence, culminating in 705 with a revised draft of the Comprehensive Connection paper.

This course is grounded in the belief that it is the responsibility of educators to employ ethical practice in the daily activities of their personal and professional lives. Educators must also ensure that the institutional policies and practices of their school or organization adhere to the application of ethical practice throughout the workplace. The course will emphasize human subjects research issues of harm and deception. This study of the use of ethical principles in an educational context will include an examination of the underlying assumptions and implicit or explicit policies that can support or erode ethical practice. As a result of the activities and discussions completed in this course, candidates will have the opportunity to transform their personal and professional ethical lives and priorities.

The courses in this sequence (EDDC 700 through 705), Scholarly Writing, provide opportunities for doctoral candidates to develop and refine their scholarly writing during the first year of the education doctorate in order to become successful writers both during and beyond their academic career. Course topics include writing article abstracts and analyses, critiques, and literature surveys. Strategies for reading critically, organizing and developing thoughts, choosing appropriate vocabulary, and revising their own writing are also covered. Candidates will practice concrete strategies for drafting and revising texts and will develop greater metacognitive awareness of their writing processes. Through peer editing experiences, candidates will develop the ability to be thoughtful readers of their peers’ writing. Candidates write and revise various genres of scholarly writing during the course sequence, culminating in 705 with a revised draft of the Comprehensive Connection paper.

Based on the view that an individual's beliefs influence his or her actions in powerful ways, this course encourages candidates to reframe their world-view to move away from knowledge transmission towards transformational learning. Candidates will deconstruct conformity to social and cultural canons which have permeated U.S. public schools to a negative effect. They will examine theories that are meant to catalyze social transformation and individual change, and develop their own theory and practice of transformative learning for social change.

The courses in this sequence (EDDC 700 through 705), Scholarly Writing, provide opportunities for doctoral candidates to develop and refine their scholarly writing during the first year of the education doctorate in order to become successful writers both during and beyond their academic career. Course topics include writing article abstracts and analyses, critiques, and literature surveys. Strategies for reading critically, organizing and developing thoughts, choosing appropriate vocabulary, and revising their own writing are also covered. Candidates will practice concrete strategies for drafting and revising texts and will develop greater metacognitive awareness of their writing processes. Through peer editing experiences, candidates will develop the ability to be thoughtful readers of their peers’ writing. Candidates write and revise various genres of scholarly writing during the course sequence, culminating in 705 with a revised draft of the Comprehensive Connection paper.

This course emphasizes the need for organizations to foster an environment where creativity, inventiveness, and entrepreneurship are expectations in the culture. Topics are investigated through popular literature and case studies of individuals who have made significant break-through contributions in the areas of science, music, art, and business. The course will address such questions as "What is the essence of creative work? Can creativity be learned? How critical is it for organizations and leaders to innovate? What conditions are necessary in the workplace to foster an environment where creativity, experimentation, and innovation are welcomed? Who determines what is creative and what is not? Why is innovation more likely found in the commercial and nonprofit sector rather than schools?" Lastly, the course hopes to tap the creative potential within all of us and illustrate its value for our own growth as well as the health of the organization.

The courses in this sequence (EDDC 700 through 705), Scholarly Writing, provide opportunities for doctoral candidates to develop and refine their scholarly writing during the first year of the education doctorate in order to become successful writers both during and beyond their academic career. Course topics include writing article abstracts and analyses, critiques, and literature surveys. Strategies for reading critically, organizing and developing thoughts, choosing appropriate vocabulary, and revising their own writing are also covered. Candidates will practice concrete strategies for drafting and revising texts and will develop greater metacognitive awareness of their writing processes. Through peer editing experiences, candidates will develop the ability to be thoughtful readers of their peers’ writing. Candidates write and revise various genres of scholarly writing during the course sequence, culminating in 705 with a revised draft of the Comprehensive Connection paper.

This course focuses on helping learners internalize the knowledge, attitudes, skills, and values necessary for facilitating organizational improvement in schools and colleges. In particular, it zeros in on the theory and technology of Organizational Development (OD), and the "what, why, and how" of planned change in diverse educational settings from pre-school to graduate school. Additionally, the course content is undergirded by person-centered values, democratic leadership skills, as well as the ideology of service-management, and is aimed at facilitating excellence in student-centered teaching and learning.

The courses in this sequence (EDDC 700 through 705), Scholarly Writing, provide opportunities for doctoral candidates to develop and refine their scholarly writing during the first year of the education doctorate in order to become successful writers both during and beyond their academic career. Course topics include writing article abstracts and analyses, critiques, and literature surveys. Strategies for reading critically, organizing and developing thoughts, choosing appropriate vocabulary, and revising their own writing are also covered. Candidates will practice concrete strategies for drafting and revising texts and will develop greater metacognitive awareness of their writing processes. Through peer editing experiences, candidates will develop the ability to be thoughtful readers of their peers’ writing. Candidates write and revise various genres of scholarly writing during the course sequence, culminating in 705 with a revised draft of the Comprehensive Connection paper.

This course provides a review of leadership styles and attributes through the lens of historic and current examples of leadership. Students will engage in applying leadership concepts and lessons learned from selected leaders to their own leadership style and practice. Selected leaders represent diverse aspects of society, including politics, sports, entertainment, business, and religion; potential selections include presidents of the United States, Phil Jackson, Nelson Mandela, Harriet Tubman, Margaret Thatcher, Oprah Winfrey, Adolf Hitler, and Steve Jobs. The course emphasizes a close examination of how and what made these leaders successful by studying their leadership techniques and their careers. The course challenges students to evaluate how these individuals developed as leaders and how they develop others around them. Students will engage in developing their own leadership voice through analysis, assessment, and reflection as well as increasing the potential and capabilities of those they lead.

The courses in this sequence (EDDC 700 through 705), Scholarly Writing, provide opportunities for doctoral candidates to develop and refine their scholarly writing during the first year of the education doctorate in order to become successful writers both during and beyond their academic career. Course topics include writing article abstracts and analyses, critiques, and literature surveys. Strategies for reading critically, organizing and developing thoughts, choosing appropriate vocabulary, and revising their own writing are also covered. Candidates will practice concrete strategies for drafting and revising texts and will develop greater metacognitive awareness of their writing processes. Through peer editing experiences, candidates will develop the ability to be thoughtful readers of their peers’ writing. Candidates write and revise various genres of scholarly writing during the course sequence, culminating in 705 with a revised draft of the Comprehensive Connection paper.

The goal of this course is to help candidates develop understandings and skills needed to make decisions that lead to improved program performance. Program evaluation is derived from the idea that social programs should have demonstrable effects and those effects should in some way outweigh the costs of the programing. This course is an examination of evaluation theory and approaches and is designed to provide students an introduction to program evaluation practice including theoretical perspectives on the purpose of program evaluation, phases of program evaluation, ethics and standard elements, and practical experience in evaluation proposal development. Application assignments will be focused on the most important and perhaps most difficult question: How to measure the impact of a program?

CONCENTRATION & RESEARCH COURSES

Transformational Leadership Year 2
17 credits

This course focuses on library research in support of a literature review along with continuing development of candidates’ academic writing. The course builds upon the critical thinking practices developed in EDDC 702 and 703, and it emphasizes the interrelatedness of critical reading, writing, and thinking in the pursuit of identifying and understanding the research literature on a topic. Candidates will locate and closely examine peer-reviewed, published research articles on their chosen dissertation topic. Candidates will leave this course with a substantial annotated bibliography of literatures on their topic and a completed literature matrix.

A survey of principles and practices of sociological knowledge management applied to the movement of organizational knowledge. This course identifies organizational knowledge limitations and provides strategies aimed at increasing organizational knowledge/involvement strategies to better meet organizational objectives. The focus is how to identify and execute needs assessments by way of strategically involving stakeholders within the organization/school. Organizational communication methodologies will be studied within the process.
This course examines practical strategies to disseminate and move knowledge, organizationally. The course will explore the theory and practice applied to a wide variety of entities, such as Education (higher and elementary/secondary education), churches, and profit/non-profit. Interdisciplinary fields of study will be incorporated, such, but not limited to strategic management, organizational behavior and communication.

This course builds upon the work completed in EDDC 706. Candidates will use the annotated bibliography and matrix to write an initial Literature Review that presents an argument about the state of research on their topics. Substantial time will be devoted to critiquing previously written Literature Reviews as a way of helping the student understand the differences between a well-written and a poorly-written literature review. The completed literature review will provide the foundation for developing a quantitative research question and prospectus about the topic in EDDC 708 and a qualitative research question and prospectus for the topic in EDDC 709.

Given the diverse nature of an organization in people, resources, and location, how can we design effective, transformative communication and collaboration to accomplish organizational goals? All professionals must share responsibility for problem solving because successful quality improvement is driven by effective multidisciplinary teamwork. The principal elements that support transformative change in developmental and group cultures are teamwork and collaboration - working together in a cooperative and coordinated way in the interest of a common cause. In order to produce effective change, a supportive organizational culture has to be present. That culture must support and value change and quality improvement. Research findings support that any outcome could be improved if people work well together as a team. This course will examine the development of better practices for creating and sustaining a culture of collaboration.

This course focuses on developing scholarship and understanding in behavioral and social science quantitative research. Doctoral candidates will craft an initial quantitative research prospectus based on the quantitative research question developed previously in EDDR 707. Candidates will identify their research niche (i.e., find a gap, or weak connection, or alternate connection in literature); establish their research niche (i.e., situate their research question in context, purpose, and conceptual framework); and occupy their research niche (i.e., state the proposed study’s significance and the nature of the study, operationalize variables, and determine assumptions, delimitations and limitations).

The prospectus is a preliminary description of the proposed research study. The prospectus provides doctoral candidates the opportunity to develop a draft of a qualitative research prospectus, under the guidance of their Faculty Chair. The prospectus demonstrates the doctoral candidate’s ability to present his or her view of an investigative passion or situation, as a research idea, that he or she is making a case for using relevant, rigorous, and feasible methods.

This course helps beginning educational researchers balance the competing demands of formal experimental and survey design principles with the ever-present practical constraints of the real world so that they can conduct sound quantitative research. Emphasis will be placed on formulating research questions, identifying relevant target populations, selecting respondents for study, refining definitions of the effects of interest, identifying relevant comparisons, selecting appropriate measures, including descriptive, inferential, and probability statistics, determining how many subjects to study, taking advantage of the results of previous research and pilot studies, and anticipating the unanticipated. The quantitative research designs of survey, correlation, causal-comparative, and comparative will be examined.

The goal of this course is to examine inquiry from a relativistic, but systematic, way of knowing. Candidates will apply qualitative research principles through coherent study of the established methodological designs of narrative, phenomenology, grounded theory, ethnography, and case study. The issues of alternative knowledge claims, validity or trustworthiness, in-depth field work, and data collection and analysis will be examined through these six strategies of inquiry.

Taken twice in Year 2

Under the guidance of the Faculty Chair and dissertation committee, candidates will develop and execute a feasible, ethical, and scientifically valid dissertation research study and write a dissertation to report the development, execution, and completion of the study. The dissertation will include: a logical, organized Introduction; a synthesized Literature Review; a well-articulated and sound Methodology; a scientifically accurate and precise presentation of Data Analysis and Results; and, a well-developed Discussion and Conclusion. The dissertation is a scholarly document or presentation intended to demonstrate the research competence of the author and to produce greater understanding resulting from a comprehensive, logical, and ethical investigation. The dissertation is an expression of a high level of critical thought and is expected to be a substantive contribution to the theory or practice of its discipline or field of study.


NOTE: Must take a minimum of eight times. May be repeated for up to 78 credits within the seven-year time limit to earn the degree.

DISSERTATION

Year 3
3 credits

Taken twice in Year 2

Under the guidance of the Faculty Chair and dissertation committee, candidates will develop and execute a feasible, ethical, and scientifically valid dissertation research study and write a dissertation to report the development, execution, and completion of the study. The dissertation will include: a logical, organized Introduction; a synthesized Literature Review; a well-articulated and sound Methodology; a scientifically accurate and precise presentation of Data Analysis and Results; and, a well-developed Discussion and Conclusion. The dissertation is a scholarly document or presentation intended to demonstrate the research competence of the author and to produce greater understanding resulting from a comprehensive, logical, and ethical investigation. The dissertation is an expression of a high level of critical thought and is expected to be a substantive contribution to the theory or practice of its discipline or field of study.


NOTE: Must take a minimum of eight times. May be repeated for up to 78 credits within the seven-year time limit to earn the degree.

As the culmination of their doctoral program, the dissertations of our EdD candidates are a showcase of their scholarly skills, diligence, and intellect. Click here to browse and read their impressive dissertations.

I’ve gotten three degrees from three different universities and this, by far, was the absolute best one I’ve ever been a part of.
DR. MAKEBA BUTLER, EdD in Transformational Leadership '17

Concordia University's Virtual Residency Advantage

With our EdD program’s innovative Virtual Residency feature, you’re able to earn your EdD in Administrative Leadership completely online — without having to sacrifice time away from your family, work, and other obligations.

MORE INFO

What’s a Virtual Residency?

The focal point of any doctoral program is the residency. Since Concordia Portland’s online EdD is aimed at the practitioner-scholar who already balances career, family, and other responsibilities, we designed a doctoral residency that can be completed anywhere, anytime, and completely online.

HOW IT WORKS

How does the Virtual Residency work?

  • It utilizes an orientation module to introduce new doctoral candidates to a rigorous course of study and identifies resources needed to engage fully in the doctoral experience
  • It employs the cohort model to generate a source of sustained collaboration and support among peers
  • It provides interactive group projects designed to build community, cooperation, and creativity
  • It provides networking opportunities embedded in proposal and dissertation development, which creates pride, fellowship, and esprit de corps with faculty, dissertation chairs, and fellow students in a cohort
WHY IT WORKS

“It appears clear that one of the main reasons almost 50 percent of students don’t finish their doctoral work is that they don’t have adequate support,” says Dr. Jerry McGuire, Emeritus Professor and former Director of Doctoral Studies at Concordia University-Portland.

As part of our Virtual Residency, students have a rich and expansive support system; they’re linked to mentors who can guide them throughout the program and the doctoral dissertation process.

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