Course Descriptions

The following are the course descriptions for Rivier University's Doctorate of Education (Ed.D.). To learn more about the course sequence, visit here.

 Core Courses

ED 851
Review of Research into Leadership and Learning
The current models, theories, and constructs for leadership and learning are examined. Current knowledge in human growth and development and learning are presented in relation to the implications for leadership. Particular emphasis is placed on leadership that proceeds from the identification and examination of research on practices that enhance learning. The identification and development of leadership based on the application of research on a theory of learning in a social setting is the focus of a course project. Submission of course artifacts to the Personal Learning Portfolio is required.

ED 853
Advances in Mind, Brain, and Learning
Recent advances in the investigation of the brain, mind, and thought are explored for their implications for learning in various contexts. The course provides students with current research in the fields of cognition, neuroscience, and learning that may be employed to effect transformational change in personal and professional settings in the community. Recent and classical learning theories are employed to enable students to identify and enhance their own learning and that of others. Submission of course artifacts to the Personal Learning Portfolio is required.

ED 856
Culturally Competent Leadership
The course emphasizes the importance of culturally competent leadership. Exploration of cultural identity is a purposeful and transformational process that requires students to actively be involved in the multicultural identity process in order to achieve an increased level of cultural competency. Students consider how their own cultural identity informs their leadership. Emphasis is placed on the acquisition of specific multicultural awareness, knowledge, and competencies to become culturally competent leaders and create environments that foster a high level of performance for those who live, learn, and work within those environments. Submission of course artifacts to the Personal Learning Portfolio is required.

ED 857
Innovative Leadership in the Information Age
The differentiation of information, technology, and curriculum is examined in order to identify how each contributes to teaching and learning in the classroom, the cultural shifts for educators and learners, and the transformation of curriculum and pedagogies in the 21st century. Beyond the specifics of technological innovation, this course explores how leadership influences global information in the act of teaching and learning as it leads to the reformulation of the curriculum and learning for all students and educators. Submission of course artifacts to the Personal Learning Portfolio is required.

ED 858
Distinctions Among Vulnerable Populations
The course presents the universals in human nature as the basis for understanding the differences, challenges, needs, gifts, and talents of students currently in need of the social, medical, psychological, and educational support services. The transformation of programs and services for persons with developmental disabilities to their perspective and in their terms is the starting place for an ecological understanding of the whole person and the reinvention of programs, services, and policies for children considered at-risk for achievement of their potential. Submission of course artifacts to the Personal Learning Portfolio is required.

 
Research Courses

ED 863
Research Methods and Design
This course provides an overview of the primary research traditions through a student developed research study. The designs and methods associated with qualitative and quantitative research are studied in light of the student’s own research study. The methods and designs within each tradition are explicated. The course focus is on understanding the appropriate use of the methods, designs, and analyses in answering a research question or hypothesis. The formulation of a research study is examined to enable leaders versed in research to affect policy, practice, and people. A graduate course in fundamentals of research, methods and design, or statistics within the last three years is recommended prior to this course. Submission of course artifacts to the Personal Learning Portfolio is required.

ED 882
Qualitative Research Methods in Social Settings
Qualitative methods and designs associated with data collection, analysis, and reporting are presented for the process of inquiry. The various methods, techniques and strategies associated with qualitative research are applied to a research study prior to the conduct of a dissertation. A qualitative study is conducted in a social setting within a community as the basis for determining the effective exercise of leadership. A graduate course in fundamentals of research, methods and design, or statistics within the last three years is recommended prior to this course. Submission of course artifacts to the Personal Learning Portfolio required.

ED 883
Quantitative Design and Statistical Conceptualizations
The foundational concepts behind the research design, collection, and interpretation of quantitative social scientific data are examined. Students are expected to demonstrate understanding of quantitative concepts by designing, implementing, and interpreting both individual and group quantitative research studies. Students learn to identify the particular analysis required and how to interpret the results of an array of commonly used quantitative methods. A graduate course in fundamentals of research, methods and design, or statistics within the last three years is recommended prior to this course. Submission of course artifacts to the Personal Learning Portfolio required.

ED 888
Development of Research on Leadership and Learning: Seminar
Research problems, hypotheses, and questions in leadership and learning are developed into a dissertation research proposal based on the accumulated knowledge of the core classes. Perspective, knowledge, and research in leadership and learning are applied to the development of the student’s own dissertation proposal. Attention is placed on the elaboration of the social, political, economic, and ethical implications of the student’s own research study. Students are expected to make significant progress in the development of their dissertation proposal within the context of the class. Submission of course artifacts to the Personal Learning Portfolio artifacts is required.

ED 890
Directed Research and Advisement
Following Ed 888 students are enrolled in directed research and advisement throughout the development and defense of the dissertation proposal. Students complete this course with the successful defense of their dissertation proposal.
»Prerequisite: Ed 888

ED 895
Dissertation Research
Following the defense of the dissertation proposal the student is enrolled in dissertation research. This course is required throughout the completion of their dissertation research and defense of their dissertation. Students complete this course with the successful defense of their dissertation.
»Prerequisite: Ed 888 and/or 890