EdD in Leadership - Higher Education Student Affairs

Applications for Summer 2023 will open on October 1st

Program Overview

The EdD program consists of 60 semester hours. Up to 10 graduate semester credits may be transferred into the doctoral program to be counted as electives. The program director will determine the applicability of all transfer credits after admission. The program generally takes three years of part-time study to complete.

To learn more, contact Mollie Galloway, program director:

Admissions Expectations

Students recruited and admitted into the Higher Education Student Affairs concentration will primarily fit one of two criteria:

  • Professionals currently working in the field of higher education and seeking a terminal degree in order to move up into an upper-level position in the profession.
  • Master’s level recipients with experiences in P-20 education, student affairs, and/or volunteer work, who are attracted to providing leadership in the areas of education whether that be in the area of policy, student affairs, and other areas of higher education.


To be considered for admission to the EdD in Leadership an applicant must meet the following prerequisite:

  • Earned a master’s degree
    All credits and graduate degrees used to meet this requirement must have been earned at a regionally accredited college or university in the United States (the college or university must be regionally accredited at the time of enrollment and when the degree was conferred) or the foreign equivalent of such degree.

Application Requirements

To be considered for admission, the application form and all supporting materials must be received by the Graduate Admissions office on or before the published application deadline.

All applicants to the EdD in Leadership must submit the following:

  • Application Form
    Lewis & Clark uses an online application. You will be able to upload your essay and resume. However, transcripts must be sent directly to the graduate school. We will accept official e-transcripts sent by college and university registrar offices.
  • Application Fee
    A $50 nonrefundable application fee is required. The fee is payable with a credit card or electronic check. Fee waivers are available to alumni and employees of Lewis & Clark. Participants in special programs are also eligible for a waiver. Go this page for information about the fee waiver process.
  • Three Essays
    Candidate are required to write three essays. The doctoral program essay topics and instructions are listed at the bottom of this page. Essays may be submitted electronically (email attachment or as part of the online application) or in paper format (hand delivered, mailed, or faxed).
  • Three Letters of Recommendation
    We require letters from three individuals who know you and are qualified to evaluate your academic competence, character and/or experience in professional or leadership roles. (See Statement on letter of recommendation for the EdD program.) The online application includes the letter of recommendation process. You will be able to manage your letters of recommendation online.
    How to Submit Your Letters
    Applicants will provide contact information for their references within the application. An email will be sent by our office to those references with a form they need to complete on the applicant’s behalf in addition to attaching their letter of recommendation.
  • Official Transcripts
    Applicants must hold a master’s degree and a baccalaureate degree from a regionally accredited institution in the United States (the college or university must be regionally accredited at the time of enrollment and when the degree was conferred) or the foreign equivalent. Official degree posted transcripts from institutions where you earned your undergraduate and graduate degrees are required. Official transcripts for any post-baccalaureate credits earned must also be provided. Failure to submit official copies of all transcripts may result in the withholding of your application for consideration. Transcripts stamped “Issued to Student” will not be considered official.

    Graduates of a non-U.S. university system are required to provide officially evaluated and translated copies of all their college transcripts. Official evaluations and translations are done by outside agencies. Information regarding three such agencies can be found by going to International Applicants.
    How to Submit Your Transcripts
    Lewis & Clark will accept paper or e-transcripts ordered directly from each post-secondary institution attended. Transcripts cannot be uploaded via the online application. Transcripts must be mailed or emailed directly from the institution to the Graduate Admissions office. The mailing and email information can be found on the right side of this web page.
  • Grade Point Average (GPA)
    All applicants must hold a minimum 2.75 GPA (on a 4.0 scale) in their undergraduate degree and a minimum graduate GPA of 3.0 GPA (on a 4.0 scale). Students who graduated from an institution using a 5.0 scale must have earned a minimum of 3.75 GPA in their graduate degree and a 3.4 GPA for the undergraduate degree.
  • Resume
    Submit a current professional resume listing positions that you have held for three months or longer including your current position.
  • Interview
    Qualified applicants may be invited to interview with members of the Graduate School faculty.

Statement on Letters of Recommendation

Letters of recommendation are among the most important aspects of a doctoral application. The Educational Leadership faculty and Graduate Admissions Committee use recommendations to assess a candidate’s past accomplishments and determine potential for success. To present a well-rounded portrait of yourself as a candidate and a professional, we suggest that you request references from a former professor who is familiar with your academic ability, a supervisor who is knowledgeable about your leadership and professional work, and a colleague who can provide a composite picture of you as a professional. Letters must be submitted through the online application process.

Decision Notification

The Graduate School of Education and Counseling will confirm the receipt and status of your application packet. Any outstanding items will be noted. after the application deadline has passed, completed applicant files will be reviewed by program faculty. Applicants will be notified of an admissions decision in writing. No information regarding admission decisions can be given over the phone.

Technology Requirements

Candidates accepted into the program are expected to have their own computer and access to the Internet.

Alumni of the Graduate School

Alumni of Lewis & Clark Graduate School of Education and Counseling who are applying to the doctorate program must complete ALL application requirements for admission to the EdD program. The $50 application fee is waived. Transcripts previously provided may be used.

Tuition Deposit

Admitted applicants will be required to confirm their intent to enroll and pay a (non-refundable) $100 tuition deposit to secure a spot in the program. The tuition deposit will be credited toward the student’s first term of enrollment.


Application files for the Doctor of Education in Leadership program are kept for one year. If reapplying for the following year, you will need to submit a new application form and the $50 application fee (fee is waived for Lewis & Clark graduate school alumni). If you would like us to use the essays, resume, and/or letters of recommendation that were submitted with your old application please notify us of this in writing. If you wish to submit new essays, resume, or letters, send these in with your new application form. The Admissions office will notify you of any additional required documentation. If you are reapplying more than a year from your previous application, you will need to resubmit all required application materials.

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Essay Questions

The essays are an opportunity for you to share with us why the pursuit of an EdD in Leadership at Lewis & Clark Graduate School of Education and Counseling will help you realize your goals.

Please write an essay on EACH of the following three topics. Each of your essays should not exceed 500 words. You will be able to upload each essay through the online application process.

  1. The Lewis & Clark doctoral program is designed to assist in the development of educational leaders with a commitment to social justice and equity. Share your understanding of the concept of leadership for social justice and equity. Include references to literature and research that you deem relevant and have helped shape your perspective on this concept. Describe how you have already demonstrated leadership and a commitment to social justice and equity in your professional life and how you plan to do so in the future.
  2. Discuss an ethical dilemma in leadership you have dealt with professionally. As you faced this dilemma, what were your options? How did you resolve this dilemma and what did you learn from the experience? How did this experience help shape you as a leader?
  3. Explain what aspect of educational leadership or policy you plan to make the focus of your advanced study and dissertation research. Why have you selected this focus?