Dec 07, 2023  
2022-2023 Graduate Catalog 
2022-2023 Graduate Catalog [ARCHIVED CATALOG]

Curriculum and Instruction, Ed.D.

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Return to: 4170 Department of Middle and Secondary Education  

The Doctorate of Education (Ed.D.) in Curriculum and Instruction (C&I) promotes an understanding of the complex dynamics among theory, research, and practice. We believe in preparing empowered scholar-educators who advocate for social justice and educational equity at the classroom, school, district, and state levels. Grounded in rigorous and relevant research, our interdisciplinary courses offer students the opportunity to conceptualize, theorize, dialogue, problem-pose, problem-solve, create, and evaluate a wide range of educational theories, practices, and policies as related to Curriculum and Instruction. Embracing the principles of social justice, the Ed.D. in C&I emphasizes innovation, diversity, and advocacy in PK-12 settings.

The degree is designed for curriculum leaders who may hold other roles in schools such as classroom teachers, assistant principals, coaches, curriculum developers, department chairs, principals, subject/content area coordinators at the school or county level, and clinical faculty. The Ed.D. Curriculum and Instruction prepares master teachers to become instructional leaders and curriculum specialists at the school and/or school system levels and who wish to develop expertise in the following areas:

  • Advocacy for equity in teaching and learning
  • Curriculum theory and development
  • Pedagogical leadership

The Ed.D. in C&I is a rigorous, collaborative, interdisciplinary program between the departments of Early Childhood and Elementary Education and Middle and Secondary Education in the College of Education and Human Development and Art and Music in the College of the Arts. This degree offers an interdisciplinary approach across Pre-Kindergarten through Secondary levels in multiple content areas, Art, Early Childhood and Elementary, Language and Literacy, Mathematics, Middle Level, Foreign Language, Music, Science, and Social Studies Education.

The program is a three-year, flexible cohort model, which is characteristic of nationally recognized exemplary professional doctorate programs. The program consists of 45 hours of course work and 9 hours of dissertation work for a total of 54 hours. Degree requirements include coursework, school- based residency requirement embedded in cohort courses (to include engagement in the professional community such as conference presentation, professional development delivery or publication), qualifying paper, prospectus presentation, and a dissertation using the approved dissertation format for the College of Education and Human Development. The dissertation will consist of a research study contextualized in the PK-12 school or family setting. A committee consisting of three faculty members, including a minimum of two College of Education and Human Development graduate or professional faculty members will support the student including review of the qualifying paper and dissertation prospectus proposal and defense.

The Ed.D. in C&I is designed in light of the new Curriculum and Instruction certification rules and graduates of this program will be eligible to obtain the new Curriculum and Instruction service certificate at the S7 level. Students holding a valid Clear Renewable, Level 4 or higher Georgia Teaching (T), Service (S), Technical Specialist (TS), or Leadership (L or PL) certificate at time of admission in their field of study would be eligible to add the Curriculum and Instruction certificate upon completion of the Ed.D. in Curriculum and Instruction program and completion of the Georgia state approved content assessment.


The College of Education and Human Development admissions requirements for this degree follow doctoral admission criteria listed at

In addition to the general criteria for doctoral admissions in the College of Education and Human Development, Ed.D. in Curriculum and Instruction applicants will be required to meet the following criteria:

  • At least one degree in the desired content area (concentration) or substantial number of years teaching in desired subject area
  • Master’s degree or Ed.S. in education or closely related field with a GPA of 3.30 or higher
  • A minimum of three (3) years teaching experience
  • 2 professional letters of reference
  • Professional Goals Statement
  • Resume
  • Interview: students applying to the Music Education Concentration includes demonstration of musical skill; students applying to the Art Education Concentration includes professional portfolio
  • Writing sample (i.e., print or electronic publication, course paper, professional blog series, etc.)

Academic Regulations

Students enrolled in this program are expected to be working professional educators and as such, their position in the school community will serve as an internship/field experience. Students who are not employed while enrolled will arrange with the Program Coordinator to work in a local setting. Residency requirements are embedded within cohort coursework.

Students are required to enroll in cohort courses in sequence with their assigned cohort. Should extenuating circumstances arise, the student’s advisor and Ed.D. Program Committee will consider and approve or deny alternate sequencing. The formal coursework requirement is satisfied through successful completion of each course in the program of study with a grade of “C” or higher, with an overall cumulative grade point average of 3.0 or better. Coursework in which a grade below “C” is earned may not be applied to the Ed.D. program.

This program is designed to lead to a Georgia Curriculum and Instruction service certificate; however, the service certificate and the doctoral degree are not mutually exclusive. To be eligible for the certificate individuals must meet the following requirements:

  • An admission requirement of a clear and renewable T4 certificate.
  • Completion of a minimum of 9 hours of coursework within a concentration area that aligns with a previously held certification or endorsement field.
  • Passage of the GACE content exam in curriculum and instruction (test is under development).

Up to 9 graduate credit hours total may transfer to the Ed.D. in C&I. Transfer courses may substitute for the research or concentration core(s) only; transfer courses may not be used for program cohort courses. Transfer credits may be applied to the program if completed no more than seven years prior to admission to candidacy.

To be recommended for candidacy, students must additionally have successfully completed the comprehensive examination, and submitted and presented an approved dissertation prospectus.

All courses consist of three (3) hours credit each, unless otherwise indicated.

Optional K-5 Mathematics Endorsement 

As part of the coursework leading to the Doctor of Education degree, students who hold a current teaching certification from the Georgia Professional Standards Commission may satisfy part of the K-5 Mathematics Endorsement requirements by completing four 9000-level courses (ECE 9393  , ECE 9394  , ECE 9395  , and ECE 9396  ). To apply for the K-5 Mathematics Endorsement, students must also complete ECE 7740   Internship in Early Childhood Education I (3) while enrolled in one of the four specified 9000-level endorsement courses. ECE 7740   does not satisfy the 8000-9000 level-course requirements for the College of Education and Human Development courses applicable to the Doctor of Education degree.

Degree Requirements

Research Core (15 Hours)

Concentrations (12 Hours)

Students choose advanced content electives from 8000-9000 level courses in the following concentration areas:

Art Education (12 Hours)

Select 12 Hours: 

Early Childhood and Elementary Education (12 Hours)

Foreign Language Education (12 Hours)

Language and Literacy Education (12 Hours)

Required (6 Hours)

Select 6 Hours

Mathematics Education (12 Hours)

Middle Level Education (12 Hours)

Additional courses may be selected with the consent of the advisor.

Required (3 Hours)

Select Three Courses or 9 Hours

Each student selects an area of advanced study of three courses (9 semester hours) in the content areas of Language Arts, Mathematics, Science, or Social Studies:

Music Education (12 Hours)

Required (12 Hours): 

Science Education (12 Hours)

Choose from the following courses:

Social Studies Education (12 Hours)

Choose from the following repeatable courses: 

Dissertation (9 Hours)

Total Semester Hours for Degree: Minimum of 54

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