Ph.D. | Educational Leadership K-12 | Kent State University

The  Doctor of Philosophy (Ph.D.) in Educational Leadership K-12 is the highest degree attainable. It is a terminal degree that prepares reflective practitioners and scholars who can function effectively as leaders in complex educational settings. Graduates are employed in public and private institutions at the pre-kindergarten to grade 12 and higher educational levels, as well as and in non-school settings, both public and private in nature.

After admission to the degree program, students plan a program of study with their respective faculty advisory committee headed by their advisor. Students' programs may include at least one appropriate graduate-level minor or cognate as well as the major. The doctoral degree requires 54 credit hours, plus 30 credit hours for dissertation. 

Admission Requirements

  • Two official copies of transcripts from each college or university in which 8 semester or 12 quarter hours were earned
  • GPA of 3.5 or higher
  • 2 letters of reference (it is preferred one letter be an academic reference)
  • Resume
  • Goal Statement (Expressing the career goals of the applicant)
  • GRE
    • Kent State will accept GRE scores for up to 5 years after your test date.
    • GRE test was changed as of August 1, 2011. Scores now range from 130-170
    • GRE requirements if taken before August 1, 2011:  550 verbal, 530 quantitative, 4.5 writing
    • GRE requirements if taken after August 1, 2011:  156 verbal, 145 quantitative, 4.5 writing
    • The Ph.D. requires the GRE with a score in the 50th percentile or above.
  • Interview

We holistically evaluate our incoming students. For Ph.D. candidates, admission will be based on criteria such as GPA, GRE scores, work experience, prior leadership, professionalism and ethics, interpersonal skills, and performance during the interview. Furthermore, candidates may submit materials in addition to those required if they feel that such materials will more accurately reflect their potential to succeed within the program (e.g., Master's theses, publications).