Educators today require a greater understanding of the differences in learning styles, the integration of technology into instruction, and the need for learning outside of the traditional classroom. That’s why a Doctor of Education (EdD) is so valuable. It delivers a deep dive into the issues affecting education and how to implement change in areas including accountability policies, curriculum, blended learning, and employee training.

The following 8 specializations provide an opportunity for EdD graduates to become experts in defined areas.

 

1. Teacher Leader in Digital Transformation

The global spend on education technology in classrooms is predicted to hit $19 billion in the next three years. Technology provides new ways to engage students and monitor how well they are learning, but to be effective, it has to be implemented systemically and incorporate the latest research and methodologies. Graduates with a specialization in digital transformation will have the knowledge and skills to integrate digital platforms into the classroom.

Common positions with this degree include:

  • Director of educational technology
  • Teacher leader
  • Education consultant
  • Director of education staff development

 

2. Personalized and Competency-Based Instruction

Competency-based education and blended learning are topics are at the top of educators’ minds these days. Likewise, the movement away from a uniform teaching approach for all students has made education more effective for students whose learning styles differ from the norm. But it also presents challenges to teachers, administrators, and school districts. Educators in this specialty can provide the critical guidance and support needed to successfully meet individual student needs in a way that is sustainable and replicable.

Common positions with this degree include:

  • Director of personalized learning
  • Teacher leader
  • Education consultant
  • Supervisor of instructional technology

 

3. Teacher Leader in K-12 Studies

The landscape of curriculum in K-12 classrooms is changing—from Common Core to “snackable” learning, leaders must be equipped to navigate new methodologies and implement best practices. A teacher leader in K-12 studies specialization develops effective teaching and learning for students in primary and secondary schools. Teacher leaders in K-12 create and oversee curriculum and instruction initiatives, as well as help other teachers as they cope with the needs of the modern classroom.

Common positions with this degree include:

  • Curriculum specialist
  • Curriculum director
  • Director of assessment
  • Director of instruction

 

4. Performance Improvement Leadership

More and more companies are recognizing the value of life-long learning for their employees. Many businesses are increasingly developing educational systems for their workers, with standards set by the Association of Talent Development and International Society for Performance Improvement. Individuals who participate in continued education at the corporate level see an increase in salary, and corporations are more efficient when employees take advantage of such training.

A performance improvement leadership specialization provides a solid understanding of the strategic and tactical issues that are part of such educational efforts.

Common positions with this degree include:

  • Chief learning officer
  • Director of training and education
  • Director of talent management
  • Director of distance learning

 

5. Reading and Literacy

An alarming stat by DoSomething.org states that 1 in 4 U.S. children grow up without learning how to read. Developing successful reading and literacy programs—for students of all ages—is essential for student success into adulthood. Graduates of a reading and literacy-focused doctoral program will learn how to build the foundations for reading and writing in diverse educational settings.

Common positions with this degree include:

  • Curriculum specialist
  • Adult basic education director
  • Reading coach
  • Learning center director

 

6. Curriculum and Instruction

With the onset of new national education standards and changing curriculums, graduates with this specialization will be equipped to work in fluctuating environments and implement new modes of instruction. From collaboration in music programs to re-thinking how testing is viewed, educators will learn how to collaborate with teachers, administrators, and districts in order to develop new and improved theories in curriculum development and instruction.

Common positions with this degree include:

  • Director of assessment
  • Director of instruction
  • Curriculum director

 

7. Adult Education

Adult education can take place in schools, businesses, or job training settings. Graduates with this specialization take the focus of real-world scenarios and critical problems in work and other environments, and turn them into solid lesson plans for older students. Adult education also provides a trickle-down effect: Parents who actively pursue education are more likely to ensure their children take advantage of education, live healthier lives, and are dynamic participants in their communities.

Common positions with this degree include:

  • Director of assessment
  • Superintendent
  • Distance education specialist
  • Director of adult instruction

 

8. Education Leadership and Management

Alarmingly, 70% of Americans blame leadership crisis as a factor in the national economic decline. Teachers moving into administrative or leadership positions as well as professionals in corporate, government, or nonprofit sectors focusing on education need to be aware of this sentiment. Effective leaders can change perception just as much as they can change physical outcomes in policy and practice.

Graduates with an education leadership and management specialization help teach others how to work in diverse environments, process generational differences, and communicate effectively to all players on the team—to provide leadership at all levels, in the best light.

Common positions with this degree include:

  • President
  • Provost
  • Vice president
  • Director

 

An online EdD program provides professionals with the tools needed to develop innovative strategies that will engage communities, improve curriculum, and better the lives of others through education.

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