Online Doctor of Education (EdD) Programs in Minnesota

There are four schools in the state of Minnesota that offer Doctor of Education programs online. Bethel University, Concordia University-St. Paul, Saint Mary’s University of Minnesota, and the University of St. Thomas, Minnesota all have EdD degrees students can complete online, making little or no visits to campus. A total of five online programs are available through these institutions, in specializations ranging from Higher Education Leadership and K-12 Administration to Music Education, Organizational Leadership, and Leadership in Student Affairs.

All four schools listed on this page are nonprofit universities regionally accredited by the Higher Learning Commission (HLC). Some of the departments described below are also accredited by the Teacher Education Accreditation Council (TEAC) or Council for the Accreditation of Educator Preparation (CAEP)*.

Schools in Minnesota with Online EdD Programs

Located in St. Paul, Bethel University offers two different EdD programs online through its Graduate School: a Doctor of Education in Higher Education Leadership and a Doctor of Education in K-12 Administration. Both degrees require a total of 61 credits and can be completed in as few as three years. Students in either concentration will take courses in areas such as organizational leadership, curriculum design, instructional management, administration of educational programs, measurement and assessment, and legal issues in school administration.

In addition to the aforementioned core courses, the Higher Education Leadership program includes courses such as Institutional Assessment in Higher Education, Strategic Leadership, Legal Issues in Higher Education, Budgeting and Fiscal Management, and Leadership of Academic and Support Systems in Higher Education. Curriculum in the K-12 Administration pathway covers topics such as Operations and Personnel Administration, Resource Management in K-12 Education, Meeting the Needs of All Stakeholders, and Administrators as Agents of Change, and includes internship opportunities for students interested in becoming principals, superintendents, or directors of special education. Bethel’s two EdD programs are delivered almost entirely online, except for an annual weeklong intensive that takes place on the Bethel campus each year. Students in the K-12 Administration program can also specialize in special education through Bethel’s Director of Special Education License program. This licensure program is approved by the Minnesota Board of School Administrators and can be completed as part of the EdD program.

Students can also pursue an EdD online from Concordia University-St. Paul, which offers an online Doctor of Education in Educational Leadership program through its College of Education. A total of 64 credit hours are required to earn the degree, with students focusing their studies on three main areas: exemplary leadership models and ethics, how to produce and evaluate research aimed at improving organizations, and their own unique doctorate field experience and dissertation work. Curriculum in the program includes courses such as Organizational Theory, Influences and Assessment of Public Policy, Data and Quantitative Analysis, Solutions Based Leadership, Strategic Advancement, Leadership and Scholarship Coaching, Qualitative Research Methods, and Research Design.

While the majority of coursework takes place online, students are required to attend two five-day on-campus residencies. The first, titled Leadership and Problems of Practice, centers around advancing students’ “personal equity journey as a leader,” helping them shape their specific passion into a potential dissertation topic. During the second residency, students further refine their dissertation plan, research methodology, and associated leadership skills, before devoting much of their remaining time in the program to completion of the project.

Saint Mary’s University of Minnesota in Winona has an EdD in Leadership with an emphasis on Organizational Leadership available for online study. Offered by their Graduate School of Education, the program consists of 61 credits and is designed to be completed in less than four years. Students begin by taking an orientation course, then delve into a 12-credit Organizational Leadership core comprised of courses in Leadership Theory, Organization Development, Organizational Effectiveness, and Ethical Dimensions in Organizational Leadership. The curriculum also includes a 15-credit Education Core, with courses such as Communication and Power in Learning Settings, Theories of Adult Learning, Instructional Strategies Techniques for Adult Learners, and Systematic Instructional Design, and a 12-credit Inquiry Core, focusing on topics such as Advanced Research Writing, Techniques for Research, and Qualitative and Quantitative Research Design and Methods.

Students round out their studies by choosing nine credits of relevant electives, and completing 13 credits associated with their dissertation and comprehensive capstone examination. Saint Mary’s EdD in Leadership program combines synchronous and asynchronous online instruction with three annual weekend residencies, which take place over five days during each summer semester (typically in mid-July).

Finally, University of St. Thomas, Minnesota in Minneapolis offers a Doctor of Education in Educational Leadership and Learning online through its School of Education. Students can choose to pursue their degree in one of five concentrations: PK-12 Administration, Higher Education Administration, Music Education, Leadership in Student Affairs, or Adult Learning. Each track requires the completion of 66 credits, including a dissertation, and takes roughly four years to finish. Along with electives in their particular concentration, all students take core courses such as Education Leaders and Learners, Scholars and Researchers in Education, Leadership for Social Justice in Education, Research Paradigms in Education, Classic and Contemporary Readings in Education, Quantitative Research Methods, and Qualitative Methods of Research and Evaluation, as well as a number of credits associated with their dissertation work.

All of the coursework in this cohort-based program can be completed online; however, students are required to attend a Summer Residency on campus each year of their studies during the last two weeks in July. St. Thomas also offers a number of other opportunities for online students to gain hands-on training while completing their degree, such as a Leadership in the Global Contexts of Ghana overseas trip, real-world field experiences in a variety of professional areas, and community partnerships with local organizations such as the Northwest Suburban Integration District, Center for Academic and Sports, FAIR School, and the Collaborative Urban Educators program.


Online EdD Programs in Minnesota

The following is a list of schools in Minnesota that offer Doctor of Education degrees online. To learn more about any of the EdD programs discussed above, click on the corresponding link below to visit the program’s website.

Bethel University

(St. Paul)
Accreditation: Higher Learning Commission, TEAC

Concordia University - Saint Paul

(Saint Paul)
Accreditation: Higher Learning Commission, CAEP

Minnesota State University Moorhead

Accreditation: Higher Learning Commission, NCATE
Department: College of Education & Human Services - Department of Leadership & Learning

Saint Mary's University of Minnesota

Accreditation: Higher Learning Commission
Department: Graduate School of Education

St. Cloud State University

(St. Cloud)
Accreditation: Higher Learning Commission
Department: School of Education - Department of Educational Leadership and Higher Education

University of St. Thomas, Minnesota

Accreditation: Higher Learning Commission

Winona State University

Accreditation: Higher Learning Commission, NCATE

*The Council for the Accreditation of Teacher Preparation (CAEP) is now recognized as the sole accrediting body for education preparation programs in the United States. TEAC accredited programs will become CAEP accredited when their accreditation is up for renewal.