Ph.D. or Ed.D. In Leadership for the Advancement of Learning and Services


Program Description

The Doctorate in Leadership for the Advancement of Learning and Service provides advanced study in leadership that prepares graduates to make significant contributions to their organizations and communities.

The program is designed for professions with present or emerging leadership responsibilities in a variety of learning communities: universities, colleges, business and industry, healthcare institutions, community organizations, social services, unions, libraries, government agencies, vocational education, staff training programs, consulting organizations, international agencies, as well as K-12 public, private and parochial schools. Participants share a common interest in leadership and may use their own work sites as a focus of graduate study. In essence, the program is designed to facilitate the development of effective leaders across a broad community.

A new cohort starts once a year in June. The program starts with a two-week, all-day Summer Institute, which is held on campus in Milwaukee. Upon completion of the Institute, classes meet at the City Center in downtown Milwaukee. Classes meet one weekend per month during the fall and spring semesters: Fridays 4-8 p.m., Saturdays 8 am - 4 pm, and Sundays 9 am - 1 pm.

The Doctorate in Leadership for the Advancement of Learning and Service is a natural extension of our commitment to live and promote the Franciscan values of peacemaking, community, caring and hospitality. More specifically, the program involves the entire Stritch community in preparing men and women with leadership skills, cutting-edge knowledge, and community-based opportunities to exercise responsible leadership in their organizations and communities.

Stritch also offers the Doctorate in Leadership for the Advancement of Learning and Service in Higher Education. The program is designed for current and aspiring leaders working in two- and four-year colleges and universities and community and technical colleges who seek to be a catalyst for meaningful change within their organization.


  • ED 700 - Leadership Year Overview
  • ED 701 - Seminar in Leading a Learning Organization
  • ED 702 - Service Year Overview
  • ED 710 - Leadership Theory: Evolution and Influences
  • ED 714 - Dimensions of Leadership
  • ED 720 - Learning Theory: Evolution and Influences
  • ED 724 - Dimensions of Leading the Learning Organization
  • ED 730 - Service Theory: Evolution and Influences
  • ED 734 - Dimensions of Leading to Serve
  • ED 740 - Research Seminar A
  • ED 741 - Research Practica A
  • ED 742 - Research Seminar B
  • ED 743 - Research Practica B
  • ED 744 - Research Seminar C
  • ED 745 - Research Practica C
  • ED 750 - Leadership in Learning and Service Institute I
  • ED 751 - Leadership in Learning and Service Institute II
  • ED 752 - Leadership in Learning and Service Institute III
  • ED 760 - The Superintendency
  • ED 761 - Doctoral Dissertation Seminar
  • ED 770 - School Finance and Economics
  • ED 771 - Leadership Development Seminar
  • ED 772 - Superintendency Seminar
  • ED 774 - Leadership Perspective of the Nature and Nurture of Learning
  • ED 776 - Leadership in Planning, Facilitating and Assessing Learning
  • ED 888 - Current Issues: Leadership, Learning, and Service
  • EDP 800 - Advanced Research and Theory
  • EDP 801 - Survey Research
  • EDP 803 - Case Study Research
  • EDP 806 - Grounded Theory Research
  • EDP 810 - Interview Research
  • EDP 812 - Focus Group Methodology
  • EDP 814 - Ethnographic Research
  • EDP 816 - Biographical Research
  • EDP 821 - Historical Research
  • EDP 822 - Program Evaluation
  • EDP 847 - Observational Research
  • EDP 848 - Observational Research: International Practicum
  • EDP 850 - Advanced Statistics I
  • EDP 851 - Advanced Statistics II
  • EDP 852 - Qualitative Data Analysis with NVivo
  • EDP 853 - Qualitative Data Collection
  • EDP 880 - Literature Review
  • EDP 881 - Writing the Research Narrative
  • EDP 882 - Writing the Publication Prospectus
  • EDP 890 - Current Research Theory
  • EDP 899 - Advanced Theory and Models

Degree Requirements

Doctorate in Leadership

Admissions Application

There is no cost to submit the admissions application online.

Applications for this program are reviewed on a rolling basis so allow sufficient time before the start of your program for consideration. Students applying as international students will need to submit additional information regarding language proficiency and student visa status.

Degree Requirements

  • All doctoral coursework has been successfully completed.
  • All three yearly assessments of the curriculum strands have been successfully completed.
  • All program requirements (study team hours, mentor goal forms, LLSR, etc.)
  • The dissertation has been accepted and approved.
  • The oral presentation has been successfully completed.
  • All financial obligations incurred by the University have been met.
  • All graduate credits applied to the degree have been earned within seven years at the time of graduation.

Degree Options

Doctorate in Leadership

All doctoral students complete the Ed.D. course sequence, which includes 63 credits in three years of work. Students selecting the Ph.D. track take an additional 3 credits in theory and research. At the end of the first year of study (May/June), students will decide whether to continue in the Ed.D. track or pursue the Ph.D. in leadership.

Distinctions Between Ed.D. and Ph.D.

The difference between the two degrees is typically summarized in the following manner: the Ed.D. has an applied focus, while the Ph.D. is more research-oriented. The Ph.D. course of study is more focused on research skill courses (sometimes called “methods”) than the Ed.D. Therefore, individuals whose future employment may involve planning, conducting and interpreting research should consider the Ph.D. The Ed.D. is designed as a practitioner’s degree and features courses that assist individuals in improving practices in their respective fields and within their communities.

Both degrees focus on leadership and are appropriate for individuals who intend to enter careers in higher education. While the Ph.D. will require students to acquire a deeper and more specific understanding of the various components of research, both degrees will focus on the implementation of research.


  • Development of specialized practitioner skills.
  • Application of other foundations and techniques to the field.
  • Applied research which primarily addresses practitioner problems or questions.


  • Theoretical foundations of the field.
  • Application of other foundational or related disciplines.
  • Research which emphasizes theory building, statistics, and research design.

Graduates of both degree programs will be prepared to make the world a better place in which to live. Specifically, a deeper knowledge of research enables more community actions and publications.

Last updated Feb 2018

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About the School

Cardinal Stritch University began as a teaching institution for the Sisters of St. Francis of Assisi in 1937. Today, Stritch offers more than 60 undergraduate and graduate degree programs that help s ... Read More

Cardinal Stritch University began as a teaching institution for the Sisters of St. Francis of Assisi in 1937. Today, Stritch offers more than 60 undergraduate and graduate degree programs that help students develop new skills, gain career-related experience, and build professional networks. With more than 34,000 alumni, our graduates are known for their roles at nonprofits, schools, small companies, health care organizations, corporations, and entrepreneurial ventures. Read less