Skip to main content


Educational Leadership, Policy, and Human Development, doctoral degree options

The goal of the Ph.D. in Educational Leadership, Policy and Human Development is to prepare scholar leaders who can positively influence improvement in K-12, higher education, counseling, and adult education.  The doctoral degree encourages students to engage in multidisciplinary research while also developing in-depth expertise in their chosen program area of study.

All doctoral degrees in the College of Education require a minimum of 72 graduate credit hours beyond the bachelor’s degree. Most doctoral programs in the College of Education require a minimum of 60 graduate credit hours beyond an approved master’s degree.


Adult and Lifelong Education Concentration

The Adult and Lifelong Education concentration is unique in its emphasis on serving the spectrum of both formal and informal adult learning organizations, and its inclusion of administrative, instructional and technology-related leadership within a practitioner preparation program. Based on a land-grant, Research Extensive University, the department reflects the tripartite commitment to quality instruction, research scholarship and service outreach.

Two students in a class at the Belk Center
Dr. Rey Garcia teaches an N.C. State post doctoral class at Wake Tech Community College in Raleigh, NC, on Oct. 19, 2018. It is part of the Belk Center program affiliated with the N.C. State College of Education.

Community College and Career Education Concentration

The Community College and Career Education concentration is designed to offer students the opportunity to study postsecondary, career & technical, and workforce education. The program has a unique emphasis on alignment and connection of education and work, labor market outcomes, improving student success, and creating economic mobility; and seeks to develop innovative partnerships and develop applied problem-solving to enhance the talent pipeline for economic and workforce development for North Carolina and beyond. 

Counseling and Counselor Education

The Ph.D. in Educational Leadership, Policy and Human Development with a concentration in counseling and counselor education is designed to prepare dedicated, knowledgeable, skillful, ethically responsible, and socially and culturally aware professionals for the 21st century. We seek talented and engaged students, with diverse counseling and counseling-related professional experiences, who are committed to teaching, research, scholarship, technology, leadership, collaboration, advocacy, multiculturalism and social justice in counseling and counselor education. Our graduates will become scholars, administrators and leaders who will design, implement and evaluate innovative counseling and educational projects or services focused on the empowerment of marginalized populations and the promotion of equity and fairness worldwide.

Counselor Education
Male High School Tutor With Two Students At Desk In Seminar

Educational Evaluation and Policy Analysis

The Educational Evaluation and Policy Analysis (EEPA) concentration is a multidisciplinary concentration whereby students and faculty examine educational problems from different traditions, including economics, political science, sociology, history and organizational studies. Faculty are experts in school choice, school desegregation, ethics and equity, implementation of reforms, principal and teacher effectiveness, leadership in high need schools and the politics of education. Students who apply to this program seek to evaluate and improve educational policy and have a passion for research. Graduates who complete this concentration often take leadership and research/analysts positions in a wide range of private and public educational agencies or become college and university faculty.

Higher Education

NC State’s Ph.D. in Educational Leadership, Policy, and Human Development higher education concentration provides exceptional opportunities for students interested in higher education administration to explore a core body of knowledge, gain real-world professional experience, and pursue advanced study. Concentration content is informed by relevant theory, scholarly research and best practice in the fields of higher education and student affairs. In addition, the program links theoretical foundations of higher education leadership and administration to practical application of skills.

Higher Education Opportunity, Equity, and Justice

NC State’s Ph.D. in Educational Leadership, Policy, and Human Development higher education opportunity, equity, and justice concentration is committed to creating just and equitable learning environments and opportunities that uplift, humanize and empower all people to thrive in postsecondary educational settings.The mission and goal of the Ph.D. in Educational Leadership, Policy, and Human Development higher education opportunity, equity, and justice concentration is to take transformative action to create equitable and just policies and practices that provide greater opportunities for success.

Higher Education Program


Community College Leadership

The NC State University Ed.D. in Community College Leadership meets in cohorts in Charlotte and Raleigh, and provides a unique opportunity for working professionals to complete a doctoral program. The structure of the program allows professionals to balance work responsibilities with academic commitments for a degree that can be completed in under four years.

Educational Leadership

Designed for school administrators, the Ed.D. in Educational Leadership seeks to improve the quality of K-12 schools by preparing the next generation of principals to be leaders dedicated to educational excellence and equity. Graduates are empowered with leadership strategies that improve student performance in environments that are dynamic, interactive and culturally diverse.

Educational Leadership