The Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) projects that employment for postsecondary education teachers will increase by 11% from 2018 to 2028, significantly faster than the average rate of growth for the rest of the economy. In addition, these educators earned a median salary of $78,470 in 2018, almost $42,000 more per year than the median pay for all other occupations.

However, to find work in this growing and lucrative field, you typically must have a doctorate. This page features a ranking of the nation's best online doctoral programs in education, as well as links to additional information on degree requirements and possible career paths in the field.

2019's Best Accredited Online Doctorate Programs in Education

In order to meet the rising demand for college instructors and professors in teacher training programs, more universities now offer fully online Ph.D. programs in education. To help you find the program that best suits your unique academic interests and professional goals, we have compiled a list of the country's top online doctorates in education.

Our ranking includes information on each program's accreditation, admission requirements, coursework and concentrations, and financial aid opportunities. We also note whether online classes are synchronous or asynchronous, making it easier for prospective students with a full-time job or family responsibilities to find programs that are a good fit.

You can learn more about a specific program, such as details about transfer credit acceptance from a particular institution, by directly contacting that school's admissions office.

School Location Cost Enrolled Online Description Toggle

Concordia University-Portland

Portland, OR Cost: $$$$$ Enrolled Online: 79%

Concordia's College of Education offers 27 programs for undergraduate, master's, and doctoral candidates, many of which take place entirely online. In the college's 110-year history, the university has granted master's degrees in education to 20,000 students.

Doctoral candidates at Concordia choose to earn their degrees online, on-campus, or through a hybrid of both modes. Students who take any portion of the program on-campus enjoy a 3toPh.D. environment, which encourages nurturing minds and bodies in school from preK to the Ph.D. level. Online learners use virtual residencies to pursue the same intensive, collaborative environment that on-campus learners enjoy. The virtual residency follows a cohort model, through which learners attend synchronous meetings with fellow residents.

Concordia offers online doctoral programs in education in five specializations: administrative leadership; professional leadership, inquiry, and transformation; higher education; instructional leadership; and transformational leadership. The curriculum takes about three years to complete and includes courses in ethical education, leading organizational change, quantitative research methods, and transformational learning. Degree candidates use their third year to complete dissertations.

Applicants must hold a master's degree from an accredited school, demonstrating a minimum 3.0 GPA. Concordia requires candidates to submit resumes with references, letters of intent, examples of academic writing at the graduate level, and transcripts. In some cases, the school requests applicant interviews as well.


Program Overview
Program Name: Doctor of Education
Available Concentrations: Administrative leadership; higher education; instructional leadership; professional leadership, inquiry, and transformation; transformational leadership
Tuition: $880/credit
Credit Requirements: 59 credits
Program Length: 3 years

Delivery
Format: Online and Hybrid
Instruction Style: Synchronous and asynchronous

Admission Requirements
GPA: 3.0 minimum

Contact
Phone: (503) 280-8501
Email: admission@cu-portland.edu
Social Media Accounts: Facebook; Twitter

Concordia University-Texas

Austin, TX Cost: $$$$$ Enrolled Online: 69%

Concordia University-Texas opened as a high school in 1926 in the outskirts of Austin, Texas. The school became a junior college in 1951 and a four-year institution in 1980. The private Christian university continues to expand its Texas campus, and it now occupies 389 acres in the city's northwest corner. Students enjoy a student-to-faculty ratio of 12-to-1, plus 50 unique academic majors and NCAA Division III athletics.

The school's online doctorate in education requires learners to complete 61 credits, 24 of which come from core courses. The core curriculum prepares learners for their final semester, in which they must complete their dissertations. In the first semester, students take just two courses, but they typically take three per term thereafter. A this rate, candidates complete their degree in three years.

Candidates choose between two specializations: educational administration and curriculum and instruction. The education administration track prepares learners to lead K-12 school districts and includes courses in education law and conflict resolution. Students who want to pursue positions in education policy choose the curriculum and instruction specialization.

Applicants must submit transcripts demonstrating a minimum 3.0 GPA on a master's degree from an accredited university. Concordia also requires candidates to hold at least five years of experience in classroom teaching, education administration, or leadership. The school does not require GRE scores, but it does accept them. Applicants must submit letters of recommendation, resumes, letters of intent, and samples of scholarly writing.


Program Overview
Program Name: Doctor of Education
Available Concentrations: Educational administration; curriculum and instruction
Tuition: $750/credit
Credit Requirements: 61 credits
Program Length: Up to 6 years

Delivery
Format: Hybrid
Instruction Style: Synchronous and asynchronous

Admission Requirements
GPA: 3.0 minimum
Work Experience: 5 years of teaching or educational administration

Contact
Phone: (512) 717-0026
Email: jluchene@graduateprogram.org
Social Media Accounts: Facebook; Twitter

Johns Hopkins University

Baltimore, MD Cost: $$$$$ Enrolled Online: 34%

Since the university's first president gave his inaugural speech in 1876, Johns Hopkins has aimed to advance research. The prestigious school represents the nation's first research university, and it has led the country in development funding since 1979.

Johns Hopkins's school of education includes about 2,600 students, most of whom study at the graduate level. Each year, the school awards 41 Ed.D. diplomas, and many of these professionals graduate from online doctoral programs in education. The university offers specializations in entrepreneurial leadership in education; mind, brain, and teaching; and instructional design in online teaching and learning. Future degree candidates may also specialize in urban leadership or technology integration in education.

Johns Hopkins designs the doctoral program for working professionals who can complete the curriculum in 3-5 years. Learners do not attend regular meetings on the Baltimore, Maryland campus. However, some courses require synchronous components, and students complete three-day on-campus residencies in the summer.

Qualified applicants have undergraduate and master's degrees with 3.0 GPAs or higher. They must also send resumes, transcripts, and three letters of recommendation. At least one letter should come from a professor who helped in the candidate's master's program. Johns Hopkins does not require GRE scores, but the admissions board strongly encourages candidates to submit them.


Program Overview
Program Name: Doctor of Education
Available Concentrations: Entrepreneurial leadership in education; mind, brain, and teaching; instructional design in online teaching and learning
Tuition: $1,422/credit
Credit Requirements: 54 credits
Program Length: 3 years

Delivery
Format: Online
Instruction Style: Synchronous and asynchronous

Admission Requirements
GPA: 3.0 minimum

Contact
Phone: (410) 516-4163
Email: cathy.cao@jhu.edu
Social Media Accounts: Facebook; Twitter

Liberty University

Lynchburg, VA Cost: $$$$$ Enrolled Online: 94%

Since 1971, this private university has aimed to create Christian leaders in many academic fields. Today, evangelical Jerry Falwell Jr. serves as the president of the university. Liberty spans 7,000 acres in Lynchburg, Virginia and serves more than 100,000 students through on-campus and online learning.

The school's online doctorate in education requires degree candidates to complete 60 credits, which typically takes about three years. While learners can graduate without setting foot on campus, they may also opt to take several intensives. These courses allow learners to earn credit on-campus over a weekend or a week. Learners can transfer up to 12 doctoral-level credits toward the program. They must also pass a background check to enroll in upper-level courses.

Learners choose between six specializations: educational leadership, special education, curriculum and instruction, curriculum and instruction - secondary, curriculum and instruction - middle grades, and curriculum and instruction - elementary education. Each concentration implements its own curriculum. For example, the online doctorate in education leadership involves courses in educational leadership and public relations, conflict resolution, and advanced learning theory and research.

All program options require candidates to complete comprehensive dissertations, and learners can design their curricula to qualify for licensure in their home states.

Candidates must hold a master's degree from an accredited university demonstrating a minimum 3.0 GPA. Applicants may also be in the final semester of a master's program at the time of application. They do not need to submit entrance exam scores, resumes, or essays.


Program Overview
Program Name: Doctor of Education
Available Concentrations: Educational leadership; curriculum and instruction; curriculum and instruction - elementary education; curriculum and instruction - middle grades; curriculum and instruction - secondary; curriculum and instruction - special education
Tuition: $595/credit
Credit Requirements: 60 credits
Program Length: 3 years

Delivery
Format: Online
Instruction Style: Synchronous and asynchronous

Admission Requirements
GPA: 3.0 minimum

Contact
Phone: (800) 424-9595
Email: luograd@liberty.edu
Social Media Accounts: Facebook; Twitter

North Greenville University

Tigerville, SC Cost: $$$$$ Enrolled Online: 90%

In 1891, the North Greenville Baptist Association set out to establish a new high school in Greenville County, South Carolina. The school added a junior college in 1934 and dropped its high school courses in 1957. Finally, it became North Greenville University in 2006. Today, about 2,500 students attend this private, nonprofit university, affiliated with the South Carolina Baptist Convention.

NGU's educational leadership doctoral program online comprises 60 credits and equips learners with skills in applied research, social intelligence, and problem-solving. Degree candidates choose between the K-12 leadership and higher education leadership specializations. Both tracks include core courses in social foundations; today's student; conflict resolution, mediation, and personnel management; and politics of education. Learners also take two research courses and earn 12 credits in pursuit of their dissertations.

All program courses follow a hybrid format and last eight weeks. Learners complete much of their coursework online, but also attend regular meetings on the Tigerville, South Carolina campus.

To qualify for this doctorate in educational leadership online, an applicant must hold a master's degree from an accredited university with a minimum 3.0 GPA. Unlike many schools, NGU does not require candidates to possess prior teaching experience. Applicants must submit either GRE scores with writing samples of at least 300 words or MAT scores with writing samples of at least 1,000 words. They should also complete an online or in-person interview with the program director.


Program Overview
Program Name: Doctor of Education
Available Concentrations: K-12 leadership; higher education leadership
Tuition: $395/credit
Credit Requirements: 60 credits
Program Length: 3 years

Delivery
Format: Hybrid
Instruction Style: Synchronous and asynchronous

Admission Requirements
GPA: 3.0 minimum
Standardized Tests: GRE or GMAT

Contact
Phone: (864) 663-7522
Email: maria.kithcart@ngu.edu
Social Media Accounts: Facebook; Twitter

Oakland City University

Oakland City, IN Cost: $$$$$ Enrolled Online: 37%

The General Association of General Baptists set out to establish the school that became Oakland City University in 1838. The university now offers convenient, accelerated, and Christ-centered programs on its campus in Oakland City, Indiana and online. Most courses last only 5-8 weeks, allowing learners to finish their degrees more quickly. The university also accepts more transfer credits than most schools. OCU holds regional accreditation from the Higher Learning Commission.

The school's online doctoral programs in education require 90-96 credits depending on how many research credits learners earned in master's programs. Students can choose specializations in superintendency, curriculum and instruction, and organizational management. Doctoral students move through several phases, including foundational studies, inquiry studies, specialization courses, a culminating experience, and a dissertation.

Oakland City University follows a cohort method for this program, in which learners take all courses with no more than 15 of the same classmates each term. In this hybrid program, learners take many courses online but must also complete on-campus residencies. OCU allows degree candidates to transfer up to 33 credits from previous graduate work.

Candidates first fill out the school's online application, which typically takes about 10 minutes to complete. Admissions advisors contact students to provide more details on the process. Applicants then submit all previous college transcripts and a resume demonstrating at least two years of work experience. The school makes admissions decisions within 72 hours of receiving all the appropriate documentation and notifies candidates immediately.


Program Overview
Program Name: Doctor of Education
Available Concentrations: The superintendency; curriculum and instruction; organizational management
Tuition: $480/credit
Credit Requirements: 90-96 credits
Program Length: 3-6 years

Delivery
Format: Hybrid
Instruction Style: Synchronous and asynchronous

Admission Requirements
Work Experience: 2 years

Contact
Phone: (812) 312-3027
Email: kbevis@oak.edu
Social Media Accounts: Facebook; Twitter

Southeastern University

Lakeland, FL Cost: $$$$$ Enrolled Online: 67%

Leaders such as the Alabama District Superintendent founded a Bible school called the Alabama Shield of Faith Institute in 1935. Now called Southeastern University, the school provides many programs outside of Bible study. The institution has changed names and locations many times, but it has always maintained association with the Pentecostal faith. Southeastern University earns regional accreditation from the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges.

Students in SEU's online doctoral programs in education specialize in curriculum and instruction or organizational leadership. Graduates who choose curriculum and instruction work in education administration and policy making. The organizational leadership concentration prepares graduates for more flexible careers in nonprofit management, business, and ministry.

Students complete most coursework online, but they must also attend some on-campus seminars in Lakeland, Florida. The school schedules these intensives during school breaks so educators from other areas can attend. The SEU online doctorate in education does not lead to any licensure.

Core courses for both specializations include learning and cognition, public policy, program evaluation, and principles of leadership and ethics. Degree candidates also earn nine credits in research methods and 12 in dissertations. Learners earn 18 credits in their desired specialization, which can include courses in instructional design and development for tech-mediated delivery; grant writing, administration, and evaluation; and organizational systems and management.

Applicants must hold a master's degree, three years of full-time work experience in education, and a minimum 3.0 GPA. Their master's must come from a regionally accredited university.


Program Overview
Program Name: Doctor of Education
Available Concentrations: Curriculum and instruction; organizational leadership
Tuition: $500/credit
Credit Requirements: 54 credits
Program Length: 4 years

Delivery
Format: Hybrid
Instruction Style: Synchronous

Admission Requirements
GPA: 3.0 minimum
Work Experience: 3 years

Contact
Phone: (866) 858-6290
Email: online@seu.edu
Social Media Accounts: Facebook; Twitter

The University of Findlay

Findlay, OH Cost: $$$$$ Enrolled Online: 36%

In 1882, Churches of God General Conference and the city of Findlay, Ohio partnered to establish the University of Findlay. The growing university now offers 90 degree options to more than 3,800 students. About 1,200 of these students enroll in graduate programs, including the school's four doctoral tracks. UF maintains affiliation with the Churches of God and earns regional accreditation from the Higher Learning Commission.

UF's online doctoral program in education allows learners to attend almost all classes completely online with a few on-campus summer intensives. Students can complete the degree in just three years. Degree candidates who hold Ohio superintendent licensure already fulfill 25% of the curriculum requirements for UF's program, which helps these learners graduate quickly.

Students complete core courses in subjects such as strategic planning and continuous improvement, innovation and information literacy, global dimensions and perspectives on diversity, and writing as a doctoral scholar. They choose between specializations in teaching and superintendent. Learners in the teaching track take courses in collaborative grant writing, mentoring and coaching teachers, and evidence-informed decision-making. Superintendent courses cover subjects such as building, grounds, and facility management; school and community relations; and collective bargaining.

Applicants must hold a master's or doctoral degree from an accredited school, demonstrating a minimum 3.0 GPA. They should also submit MAT scores of at least 400, two letters of recommendation, and transcripts. Candidates who meet these requirements complete interviews either online or in-person with faculty members from the college of education.


Program Overview
Program Name: Doctor of Education
Available Concentrations: Superintendent; teaching
Tuition: $540/credit
Credit Requirements: 60 credits
Program Length: 3 years

Delivery
Format: Hybrid
Instruction Style: Synchronous and asynchronous

Admission Requirements
GPA: 3.0 minimum
Standardized Tests: MAT

Contact
Phone: (800) 472-9502
Email: admissions@findlay.edu
Social Media Accounts: Facebook; Twitter

University of Mary

Bismarck, ND Cost: $$$$$ Enrolled Online: 29%

Mary prides itself as one of the most affordable private schools in the United States. The Catholic Benedictine university educates more than 3,800 learners online and at campuses in North Dakota, Minnesota, Peru, Rome, Arizona, Montana, and Kansas. Students enjoy rigorous academic coursework, NCAA Division II sports, and Benedictine values.

The school offers four doctorate degrees, including an online doctoral program in education. Mary uses a blended instructional style for this program, which includes online courses and some on-campus meetings in Bismarck, North Dakota. Students begin the program in odd-numbered years and follow an accelerated cohort format. Most degree candidates earn their diplomas in less than three years.

Mary splits its curriculum into 15 terms, including courses in leading adult learners, foundations of American education, educational ethics, and school community relations. The curriculum prepares graduates to work in K-12 and higher education organizations. It also allows plenty of room for electives, which lets learners customize their degrees to suit their career goals. Degree candidates complete a dissertation at the end of their program. They must also pass the graduate studies assessment before graduating.

Mary uses competitive admissions and opens up applications every other year. The school does not set minimum requirements, but its admissions board considers master's degree GPAs, GRE scores, and writing samples in the decision process. Applicants also complete faculty interviews. Their master's degrees must come from accredited universities.


Program Overview
Program Name: Doctor of Education
Available Concentrations: K-12; higher education
Tuition: $650/credit
Credit Requirements: 60 credits
Program Length: 3 years

Delivery
Format: Hybrid
Instruction Style: Synchronous and asynchronous

Admission Requirements
GPA: 3.0 minimum
Standardized Tests: GRE

Contact
Phone: (701) 355-8030
Email: enroll@umary.edu
Social Media Accounts: Facebook; Twitter

University of Michigan-Flint

Flint, MI Cost: $$$$$ Enrolled Online: 33%

In 1956, this university set out to serve Flint and the surrounding area with high-quality education opportunities. UM-Flint continues to fulfill this promise through affordable tuition, local industry partnerships, and in-demand degree options. Learners from around the world benefit from UM-Flint's dedication to excellence through the university's robust distance education offerings. The school earns regional accreditation from the Higher Learning Commission.

UM-Flint's online doctorate in education takes place mostly online with on-campus meetings one Saturday each month. The monthly meetings allow degree candidates to learn from each other and take part in their school's vibrant community. Because this program uses small cohorts, learners get to know their classmates and build networks. Students take part-time classes and graduate in as little as three years.

Although UM-Flint designs this program for current K-12 professionals, graduates can either stay in K-12 or move to higher education administration. In their first two years, learners take courses in educational policy; school law and equity issues; professional standards and community relations; and school finance, business, and human resources management. After completing their core courses, degree candidates must pass a comprehensive exam. Learners take the final year to complete their dissertations.

Applicants must hold an education specialist degree from a regionally accredited university and demonstrate a minimum 3.3 GPA to qualify for admission. They should also hold at least three years of experience in education or a related field. The program director consults faculty to make admissions decisions.


Program Overview
Program Name: Doctor of Education
Credit Requirements: 34 credits
Program Length: 3 years

Delivery
Format: Hybrid
Instruction Style: Synchronous

Admission Requirements
GPA: 3.3 minimum
Work Experience: 3 years in education

Contact
Phone: (810) 762-3300
Email: graduate@umflint.edu
Social Media Accounts: Facebook; Twitter

Are you wondering if an online Ph.D. in education is the next step for you? Our comprehensive degree guide provides all the information you need to make your decision.

An online doctorate in education opens up a wealth of professional opportunities. Read our career guide to learn more about the field's licensure requirements, job prospects, and earning potential.