Quad Cities Campus

Doctorate in Education in Educational Leadership at WIU-Quad Cities

EDL Grad Program

Advising: (309)762-1988 | Catalog

Departmental Website:

The Department of Educational Leadership at Western Illinois University offers a Doctorate in Education (Ed.D.) degree for practicing administrators, educational leaders, and researchers. Educational leaders who wish to make a difference in their school districts, regional office, or educational agency will find the doctoral course of study and research component powerful tools in improving organizational performance. The mission of the Department of Educational Leadership is preparing transformational leaders who cultivate exemplary learning organizations.

Doctoral classes are offered at the University of Lake County Center (ULCC) in Grayslake, Illinois, by videoconference and face-to-face instruction with Educational Leadership faculty. While some coursework must be completed at WIU-QC in Moline, Educational Leadership class sessions are conducted on a rotating basis at the ULCC campus and at WIU-QC in Moline. Faculty support for student research and advising is offered at both campuses.

Admission Requirements

The faculty of the doctoral program expect cohort students to enter with the prerequisite knowledge, skills, and dispositions of an effective administrator. Applicants should complete the following steps in the admissions process:

  1. Apply for admission to the doctoral program simultaneously with admission to the School of Graduate Studies. Applications for admission to the School of Graduate Studies must be made using forms obtained online at wiu.edu/grad. Departmental admission application forms should be obtained directly from the Department of Educational Leadership or online at wiu.edu/EducationalLeadership.
  2. Request that official transcripts (one copy of each) documenting bachelor’s degree and all graduate-level coursework attempted be sent directly to the School of Graduate Studies from the credit-granting institution. Transcripts must document completion of a master’s degree in Educational Leadership (or equivalent) and an Education Specialist degree (or equivalent).
  3. Submit official Graduate Record Examination (GRE) scores (the General Test in areas of verbal, quantitative, and writing) to the School of Graduate Studies before their academic records will be evaluated and transmitted to the Educational Leadership department for consideration. Scores should be no older than five years.
  4. Provide evidence that applicant currently holds, or is eligible for, an Illinois Type 75 superintendent’s endorsement (or equivalent).
  5. Provide evidence of a strong commitment to continuous improvement presented in a leadership portfolio.
  6. Request letters of recommendation from three individuals who are familiar with the applicant’s professional work. Forms are located on the departmental website.
  7. Submit complete résumé.

Each applicant will be interviewed by the screening committee to review the application materials and discuss the applicant’s academic and career objectives.


Faculty members are dedicated educators, skilled in fostering active student participation. They are active scholars engaged in numerous activities to promote the profession and practice of educational leadership. Their professional experience includes service as school district superintendents and other executive-level positions, principals, and consultants.

Doctoral Graduates

There is a significant shortage of educational leaders seeking the superintendency regionally and nationally. In addition, there is great demand for researchers in state and federal departments of education, educational service agencies, colleges and universities, and school districts. Leaders who complete their doctoral degrees have a wide range of opportunities to serve at all levels of education.

EDL Student

Featured Alums

Mark Hansen

“The WIU doctoral program has enhanced my skills in many ways, but I think most importantly, it has broadened my perspective. The readings, the outreach to observe and communicate with professionals in the field, and the interaction with the educators in my cohort have all helped me understand and appreciate the complexity of affecting change in schools. The experience has increased the likelihood that I will be able to affect change, which is really what is supposed to happen, I think (and hope).”

– Mark Hansen, Doctoral Graduate, Spring 2010
Superintendent, Eastland CUSD #308

Required Courses – Ed.D. in Educational Leadership

Courses required in the Ed.D program are provided by the Department of Educational Leadership, the Department of Educational and Interdisciplinary Studies, the Department of Instructional Design and Technology, and the Department of Special Education:

  • EDL 700 Seminar in Doctoral Studies: 2 sh
  • EDL 701 Quantitative Research in Educational Leadership: 3 sh
  • EDL 710 Facilitating a Vision of Excellence: 3 sh
  • EDL 711 Improving the Learning Environment and
    Instructional Program: 3 sh
  • EDL 715 Research in Schools and Communities: 1 sh
    (Repeatable to 5)
  • EDL 712 Managing the Organization, Operations, and
    Resources: 3 sh
  • EDL 725 Prospectus Development: 1 sh
    (Repeatable to 3)
  • EIS 701 Quantitative Research for Educational Leaders: 3 sh
  • EIS 747 Politics of Education: 3 sh
  • IDT 756 Planning for Technology: 3 sh
  • SPED 613 Families, Diversity, and Social Issues: 3 sh
  • EDL 770 Comprehensive Examination in Educational
    Leadership: 0 sh
  • EDL 790 Doctoral Research and Dissertation: 3 sh
    (Repeatable to a minimum of 9)

Research Opportunities

This doctoral program offers a unique opportunity to conduct case study research in high-performing, high poverty schools to learn how faculty and school leaders organize and deliver instruction, create a positive climate and culture, and generate positive student achievement results. Following this experience, students assume the role of consultant to schools that have academic challenges. The dissertation experience is facilitated by a chairperson and three other committee members drawn from the Educational Leadership department and the College of Education and Human Services.

Financial Aid

Financial aid information is available through Student Services at the Moline campus. Contact Financial Aid at (309) 762-9481, ext. 62235.

Contact Information

Additional information is available at wiu.edu/Educational Leadership. For answers to specific questions on application, admission, and the program, contact Dr. Lloyd C. Kilmer, Western Illinois University–Quad Cities, 3300 River Drive, Moline, IL 61265, (309) 762-9481. Additional process support is provided by Karla White, Doctoral Program Office Support Specialist, (309) 298-1070, at the Macomb Campus.