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About the Program

The Interdisciplinary Doctorate of Education Program in Leadership is a major new development at Creighton University. The program is a flexible, online, interdisciplinary program which is intended to be a terminal degree program designed to provide graduates with an understanding of the leadership practice, theory, research and policy necessary to develop organizations and people for a changing world. In the tradition of a Catholic, Jesuit institution, students dialogue in an interdisciplinary environment designed to increase their understanding of how to work with, develop, and motivate others. 

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The concept of leaders as stewards of an organization is emphasized during each course and promoted through interactive online learning experiences. Self reflection is encouraged and incorporated into each course and eventually integrated into a personal statement of one’s leadership vision. The program culminates in a final dissertation. Because the Ed D. is considered to be a “practice degree,” students in the program are encouraged to consider their workplaces as laboratories for the educational experiences they encounter in the program. 

The Ed.D in Leadership is unique from two perspectives. First, the program is designed, developed and delivered from a program perspective rather than a course perspective. Both program themes and learning outcomes are developed and assessed from a program perspective. Individual courses will specify which of the program themes and learner outcomes are addressed.  Courses are delivered in a logical sequence that begins with foundation theory, concepts, and application followed by more skill focused courses.   

Second, the program is designed, developed and delivered from an interdisciplinary perspective. By definition the term interdisciplinary (when applied to the academic setting) means “involving two or more academic, scientific, or artistic disciplines” ( This rather universal definition of the term is appropriate for the Ed.D. program in Leadership, which incorporates a number of disciplines in order to serve students in a number of professions. The traditional discipline-based model that has been the foundation of educational institutions is not necessarily the best way to address the complex, real-world problems nor can it support the aims of graduate program in leadership.  

The Ed.D. program in Leadership implements the interdisciplinary concept in the following ways:

1.    The themes/outcomes/goals of the program provide the foundation for the curricular structure and the educational experiences that will assist students to meet the program goals. In order to do this, a multi-disciplinary group works together to develop courses and educational experiences.  

2.   A set of core courses consistent with the goals of this interdisciplinary program serves as the program platform. This core is interdisciplinary and appropriate for leaders in any of the fields of business, education, health professions, or other organizations.    

3.   The other curricular components (research, electives, practicum) provide interdisciplinary (multi-departmental) opportunities which allow students to pursue their special interests and needs.  

4.   The program is not housed in one of the departments of business, education or health sciences, but in the Division of Academic Affairs and the Graduate School, which provides a location that fosters interdisciplinary practices. More importantly, the program director and core faculty who teach the courses are not representing one discipline or department; rather the director and faculty are committed to supporting and participating in the interdisciplinary agenda of the program. 

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