Professional Doctorate in Doctor of Education (EdD)

    • Full or part time
      On campus & Part time available
    • Course fees
      Please see course description
    • Course Disciplines
    • Course Start
    • Course Duration
      Part-time: usually six years (minimum of four years)
    • Professional Doctorate Type

    About This Professional Doctorate

    Course Description

    • Achieve your doctorate on a programme which is ideal for individuals working across a wide variety of education, training, public service, industrial and community settings
    • Focus on a major independent study which will help you develop professionally and personally in your working role
    • Gain high-calibre research skills to generate new insights for the benefit of your own organisation and the education community at large
    • Take a structured approach to studying at doctoral level, supported at every stage by an academic team who have won national recognition for their high standards
    • Fit your studies around your personal commitments: we offer a flexible route to the EdD taking between four and six years.

    If you’re a working professional committed to extending your understanding and improving your practice, the Doctor of Education (EdD) is an excellent choice.

    Education in its broadest sense

    Our Doctor of Education (EdD) has a broad appeal: you don’t have to be a teacher, tutor or lecturer to benefit. The programme is relevant to professionals engaged in learning, teaching, coaching, development, education policy and administration in a vast range of occupations and settings.

    Our students work in education establishments, health and social care, commercial management and training, organisational development and improvement, business and the voluntary sector. 

    Research with real impact

    This is an intellectually challenging programme which stimulates your professional thinking. We will equip you to undertake a substantial, robust research project in the context of your own practice.

    Directly relevant to your working role, your independent study enables you to create and interpret new professional knowledge, support innovative approaches and improve quality. It yields significant benefits for your organisation and your own potential for further career development.

    Structured for success

    The first two years of the programme are designed to build your skills and confidence to engage in doctoral level study and to research your professional field. Individual tutorials offer essential guidance to steer your progress and thought-provoking seminar groups enable you to share experiences with fellow students from a wide range of backgrounds.

    This provides a firm foundation for your independent research during years three to six as you develop your thesis under the supervision of a Director of Studies.

    Academic rigour and expertise

    Our Doctor of Education (EdD) is delivered by experienced tutors and supervisors who have expertise across all educational spheres and regularly publish their work. They will keep you abreast of latest thinking and challenge your perceptions.

    The programme draws on the cutting-edge educational research for which the University is renowned. Conducting influential studies on everything from early years to adult learning, we provide consultancy for Government, schools and the wider education sector. It means your learning will be underpinned by innovative ideas which are changing the face of the education professions.

    How you will learn

    During the Theory for Practice stage, you will be taught as a cohort in seminar groups supported by individual tutorials. These sessions will enable you to build a close relationship with your tutors and other students. Each module is organised as blocks of intensive teaching of between 3 and 8 days.

    How you're assessed

    Assessments provide a variety and range of tasks which go beyond the requirements of the academic essay. These facilitate professionals such as yourself in articulating and disseminating your expertise.

    Over the course of the whole programme, you will undertake the following:

    • An analysis of the nature of practitioner research within professional practice (3000 words).
    • A reflective literature review focused on your area of study (5000 words).
    • An extended essay (10,000 words) justifying your chosen educational research methodology for your professional research. You will consider research ethics and an appreciation of contemporary philosophical debates about educational research.
    • A viva voce examination of a professionally researched thesis (50,000 - 60,000 words).


    Our students choose this programme as a crucial part of their personal and professional development. You will gain impressive skills in research, analysis, critical and strategic thinking which will enhance your performance in your current role while paving the way to further career opportunities. The doctorate is often a stepping stone to more senior leadership roles.

    Visit the Doctor of Education (EdD) page on the University of Derby website for more details!

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    Entry Requirements

    You will usually hold a masters award in an appropriate academic field, and have significant experience of work within your professional practice (usually two years minimum).You should have high levels of competence in English. If necessary, this should be demonstrated by IELTS 6.5.All suitable applicants will be interviewed.As the EdD programme is only delivered part-time, we regret that we cannot take international students as this would contravene UKBA regulations.

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