Program Contact

Dr. Tamara Young
Associate Professor
Program Coordinator
Please send cc to when contacting Dr. Young.

Ph.D. in Educational Leadership, Policy, and Human Development (ELPHD)

Educational Evaluation and Policy Analysis

Department of Educational Leadership, Policy, and Human Development (ELPHD)

The Educational Evaluation and Policy Analysis program area is multidisciplinary, deliberately drawing on a wide range of theoretical traditions and methodologies to address critical issues in education, such as school choice, high poverty schools, and access to higher education. Graduates who complete our program often take leadership and research positions in a wide range of private and public educational agencies or become college and university faculty.

Important Dates
December 1, 2018
Complete applications for consideration for funding and assistantships are due December 1.

Applications are being accepted for Fall 2019. The application deadline is December 1, 2018.

Information Sessions
5:30-6:15 pm
May 9, 2019
Join us to learn more about the Educational Evaluation and Policy Analysis Program.
Poe 120
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Program Description

Students and faculty in the Educational Evaluation and Policy Analysis specialization of the Ph.D. in Educational Leadership, Policy, and Human Development are engaged in theoretically-driven, empirical high impact research that informs policy and assesses educational programs in formal and informal settings where individuals across sectors, levels, and ages learn. Courses are designed to equip students to have an in-depth knowledge of theory and research methods and to think rigorously. Faculty and students focus on issues of effectiveness, efficiency, and equity. For example, faculty and students are currently studying:

  • School leadership pipeline for high poverty schools
  • Evaluation of the Every Student Succeeds Act
  • Policy implementation
  • School choice
  • Cost-benefit analyses of educational programs

Admission Requirements

Please note: All application materials must be submitted through the Graduate School’s online application site (see Apply Now link at the top of this page).

  • Official GRE scores
  • Personal statement of interest and desired career goals
  • Professional resume or CV
  • Transcripts from all institutions attended (except NC State)
  • Three professional/academic recommendations
  • TOEFL scores for international students

Course of Study

Degree Requirements

Requirements for completion of the Ph.D. in Educational Leadership, Policy, and Human Development (ELPHD) are subject to the policies of the University of North Carolina system and of North Carolina State University. Please consult the relevant section of the Graduate School’s website for questions about policies and the specific requirements for doctoral degree programs.

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.

Doctoral Curriculum:

All doctoral students in ELPHD are required to take three foundational core courses. Students are also required to take four courses in the qualitative and quantitative research sequence and one applied research course, which is selected in consultation with the student’s advisor.

In addition to the core courses, students in the ELPHD program take courses in their specialization area. ELPHD-Educational Evaluation and Policy Analysis courses can emphasize disciplinary depth (e.g., quantitative research methods, political science, and public administration) or an interdisciplinary perspective. For example, a student who is interested in pursuing a career as an educational researcher may select courses that focus on quantitative research methods. These courses may be taken within a single department or comprise a set of courses from different departments. Courses selected to complete the specialization core vary depending upon a student’s scholarly interests, background, and career goals. These courses must be selected in consultation with the advisor.

The courses listed below and the accompanying credit hours should be considered the minimum requirements for the degree. On the recommendation of members of the student’s advisory committee, required classes may be supplemented by additional coursework


Research Core (15 credit hours)

ED 710 – Quantitative Research

ED 711 – Quantitative Research-Advanced

ED 730 – Qualitative Research

ED 731 – Qualitative Research-Advanced

Research Methods Elective

2 Scholar Leader Core Courses (6 credit hours)

Ph.D. Level Scholar Leader Courses: Preparation for the Profession (6 hours)

Educational Evaluation and Policy Analysis Specialization (24 credit hours)

Courses are selected in consultation with advisor.

Sample courses include:

ELP 728 – School Law

ELP 729 – Education Finance

ELP 735 – Policy Research in Education

ELP 751 – Politics of Education

ELP 753 – Data Based Decision Making

ELP 756 – Organizational Leadership & Management

ELP 780 – Evaluation Theory & Practice in Education

ELP 795 – Economics of Education

ELP 795 – Implementation Evaluation

ELP 795 – Economic Evaluation: Cost-Benefit Analyses

Dissertation (9 credit hours minimum)

The doctoral dissertation must present the results of the student’s original investigation in the field of primary interest. It must represent a contribution to knowledge, adequately supported by data, and be written in a manner consistent with the highest standards of scholarship. Student must also pass their final comprehensive oral examination (dissertation defense). See relevant section of Graduate Student Handbook for details about the dissertation and The Electronic Thesis and Dissertation Guide for details.

*NOTE*: For doctoral students either part-time or full-time who are working on their dissertation.

Writing the dissertation requires a major commitment of time and effort on both the part of the doctoral student and the faculty advisor. There should be consultation between the student and the dissertation chair about what is expected to be accomplished, and how much time is to be invested before the student registers. The College of Education strongly recommends that students who are registering for dissertation research (895) or preparation (899) register for at least 3 semester hours per semester, when appropriate.

Our Faculty

Jenn Ayscue
Assistant Professor

Lisa Bass
Assistant Professor

A. Brooks Bowden
Assistant Professor

Tim Drake
Assistant Professor

Anna Egalite
Assistant Professor

Bonnie Fusarelli
Professor, Educational Leadership Coordinator,
Director of NC State’s Leadership Academies

Lance Fusarelli
Professor, Interim ELPHD Department Head

Tamara Young
Associate Professor, EEPA Program Coordinator