Ed.D. Program Information


Selection into the Ed.D. program requires the following:
  1. Holding an earned master's degree from a regionally accredited educational institution
  2. Completing the application which is available online
  3. Submitting official transcripts of all graduate credits from previously attended colleges/universities
  4. Earning at least a 3.4 minimum GPA at the graduate level. Applicants with less than a cumulative 3.4 GPA may be considered for restrictive admission. Individuals whose master's programs gave "pass" or "fail" in lieu of grades will submit a description of the admission requirements to the master's program, and a letter from an official of the institution regarding the likelihood of the applicant's success in a doctoral program.
  5. Arranging for two professional and/or academic references from individuals who know the applicant's abilities and can attest the potential ability for success in doctoral studies
  6. Submitting a resume or curriculum vita which describes professional experiences reflecting readiness to enter a doctoral program in leadership and professional practice
  7. Completing a writing sample, the details of which will be described to you by your enrollment counselor

    Doctoral Admissions Committee

    The purpose of the Doctoral Admissions Committee is to review the data submitted for entry into the doctoral program. The Admissions Committee is composed of selected doctoral faculty and alumni. Because selection is based on a composite evaluation, the committee will determine whether the applicant is accepted, deferred, or denied.

    The Doctoral Admissions Committee decision for acceptance or denial to the program is final and is not subject to appeal. If the decision is made to deny admission, the individual must wait at least twelve months before applying again. If the decision is made to deny a second request for admission, the individual’s application will not be considered in the future.

    Appeal Procedure

    All appeals in the doctoral program will follow the process below:

    1. Submit the issue of concern, in writing, to the Director of the Ed.D. program.
    2. If the candidate is not satisfied with the decision, the candidate can submit, in writing, the issue of concern to the Associate Vice President (AVP) of Graduate and Continuing Studies.
    3. Once the concern is submitted to the AVP of Graduate and Continuing Studies, the AVP will take the issue to the Doctoral Council.

    The Doctoral Council's decision is final.

    Academic Load

    In the doctoral program, the class loads per semester during fall or spring semester will range from five to ten hours in addition to dissertation hours (see Matrix). Candidates will take two courses totaling seven to nine hours during the Intensified Summer Learning Experience (ISLE).

    Academic Standing and Probation/Suspension

    Regardless of the load carried per semester, each candidate must maintain a cumulative grade point average of 3.0 (B) to remain in good standing. If the cumulative GPA falls below 3.0, the candidate will be declared on academic probation for the following semester. Upon regaining the required cumulative average, 3.0, the candidate will be in good standing. However, if the candidate does not meet the cumulative average of 3.0 during the probationary semester, he/she will be declared on academic suspension for the subsequent semester and until reinstated by the Doctoral Council. Failure to maintain the dissertation completion schedule may result in suspension or academic disenrollment from the program.

    Attendance and Schedule Changes

    Students receive the tentative schedule of classes for the entire program when a new cohort begins. Students must maintain flexibility in schedules to allow for possible changes in dates of courses including but not limited to University schedule changes and inclement weather closures. An absence due to schedule changes is still considered an absence as explained in the attendance policy.

    Class attendance is an important student obligation, and each student is responsible for all work conducted in class meetings. Making up missed class time is impossible; therefore, maintaining the integrity of the course dictates the necessity of the following attendance policy:

    • Excused absences are approved for only three conditions: Active military duty, personal illness of student other than elective surgery, death in the immediate family. 
    • An unexcused absence from a class session results in a penalty of one letter grade; two absences from a course for any reason result in disenrollment from that course. Work-related activities, weddings, vacations, and family reunions are examples of unexcused absences.
    • In the event of an emergency and the student cannot physically attend class but has access to be in class remotely (i.e., Skype, FaceTime), the student may use a remote device for one absence only. A second absence would result in disenrollment of the course. If a student elects to use the remote option, it is the student’s responsibility to make arrangements with a fellow cohort member to coordinate the remote attendance. It is also the student’s responsibility to notify the instructor, in advance, of using the remote option.
    • In the event of any absence, the student must submit a Class Absence Form to the Student Success Adviser. Additionally, the student is responsible for notifying the instructor and for making up the work according to the instructor's directions. 
    • The Class Absence Form is required for any absence, excused or unexcused.

    Dissertation Advising

    The Ed.D. Director, in concert with the Doctoral Council, seeks out University faculty who may have an interest or expertise in the areas in which the doctoral candidates conduct research. The Ed.D. Director carefully screens all potential advisors prior to submission to the Doctoral Council. The majority of advisors are full-time professors within the University academic units; however, advisors may also be selected from faculty in other universities or part-time faculty at TNU who hold the doctorate.

    Each doctoral candidate will be assigned a dissertation team. The dissertation team consists of the advisor and one additional member who serves as a reader for the dissertation. The advisor is the primary member of the dissertation team. Individuals selected to serve as readers hold terminal degrees and/or have exceptional expertise or experience.

    If a candidate requests the assigned advisor or reader be changed, the Doctoral Council will determine if the request should be granted. If the change is granted, the fees to be charged to the candidate are as follows: $350 for change in advisor; $150 for change in reader.

    Candidates are expected to keep in touch with their advisor throughout each semester. Advisors may be reached at 615-248-1529 or (844) TNU-GRAD, e-mail, or voice mail.

    Candidacy for the Doctoral Degree

    To be admitted to candidacy for the doctoral degree, the candidate must have successfully completed the first 18 semester hours of the program, have an unconditional approval of the dissertation proposal, and be recommended by the Ed.D. Director after faculty review of candidate's file, including dispositions and class attendance. The candidacy forms are provided by the School of Graduate and Continuing Studies.

    Grading System–Doctoral Program

    The grading system for doctoral studies includes the letter grades A, B, C, D, and F for all courses except Dissertation. The grades of S or U will be assigned to the Dissertation. Courses with grades below B- or U must be retaken. For all research and statistics courses with an earned grade of B- or below must be retaken before proceeding forward in the doctoral program. The third grade below a B-  in the same attempted course leads to termination from the program. 

    A grade point average of 3.0 must be maintained for satisfactory academic progress. Grades of F or D will result in permanent termination, unless an emergency circumstance arises. Emergency circumstances are: hospitalization of self or immediate family member; death in immediate family; and military deployment. Incompletes are permitted only in the event of sickness or emergency reasons near end of course and must be approved by the professor and the program director. The “I” must be removed by the end of the subsequent semester. 

    Research and statistics courses are gate-keeping benchmarks within the EdD program. For these courses to be completed successfully, students must earn a final grade of B- or higher. Students will not be allowed to proceed in the doctoral program until these courses are successfully completed.

    Tuition and Fees

    Any candidate who drops below half-time status (3 semester hours) for two consecutive semesters will be suspended from financial aid. This suspension will require the candidate to pay for at least three hours with his or her own resources before he or she can regain eligibility for aid. A candidate may appeal the suspension to the review committee.

    In the unlikely event a student has to take a course for the third time, financial aid is not available.

    Candidates must submit a new Free Application for Federal Student Aid for each academic year they are enrolled and want to receive federal loans. All candidates must contact the Office of Financial Aid if they want subsequent loans. Financial aid packets and additional information concerning financial aid may be obtained by calling the Office of Financial Aid at  (615) 248-1427.

    Tuition (57 semester hours, $699 per hour)


    Technology fee (per course)


    Each dissertation hour beyond 12 (per semester hour)


    Course and Instructor Evaluation and Assessment

    A Course and Instructor Evaluation is administered at the end of courses. Candidates are sent an online link to their Trevecca e-mail account. The evaluation period closes the day after the last class session. The evaluation is considered a personal assessment; therefore, discussion of any kind during the process should not occur. In order to maintain high quality instruction in all the classes, instructors receive the results of the evaluations after all grades have been submitted. Courses include several types of evaluative and assessment measures related to candidate progress.

    Graduation Requirements

    To be eligible for graduation from the doctoral program, candidates must:

    1. Submit a graduation application by the required date.
    2. Be admitted to candidacy upon completion of 18 semester hours (see requirements under "Candidacy for the Doctoral Degree").
    3. Complete all requirements of the curricula.
    4. Maintain a grade point average of 3.0 or better.
    5. Repeat courses with grades below B-.
    6. Make up dissertation hours with a grade of "U."
    7. Successfully complete the dissertation defense and all other requirements pertaining to the dissertation.
    8. Satisfy all financial obligations to the University.

    To participate in commencement, Ed.D. candidates must complete ALL requirements. Full payment for uploading of all dissertations must be paid in order to participate in commencement.