Careers Leaders Can Pursue with an Ed.D.

Experienced leaders who choose to pursue a doctor of education (Ed.D.) often see room for improvement in their organizations. Many also wish to lead others, inspiring these individuals to reach their greatest potential and improving overall business outcomes.

By pursuing an Ed.D., professionals can prepare to design and implement strategic programs that solve challenges and create positive change in their organizations. Because the Ed.D. degree centers around solving a problem of practice or a particular organizational challenge, they may apply the degree to a wide range of settings, such as private companies, nonprofit organizations, or educational institutions.

An Ed.D. Designed for Real-World Change

Ed.D. programs typically include a practice-based research component that prepares graduates to transform what they learn into real change. The Vanderbilt Peabody College of education and human development online Ed.D. in leadership and learning in organizations emphasizes building this contextual experience.

The Peabody Online Ed.D. curriculum prepares students to identify, assess, and resolve organizational challenges from a learning and design perspective. They also develop highly relevant skills through an intensive capstone project. In the capstone, students work directly with a focal organization to create a strategic plan under expert guidance from Peabody faculty. This experience prepares students with both theoretical and practical knowledge so they can graduate ready to drive change within their organizations and communities.

A Focused Degree with a Range of Career Options

Ed.D. curricula typically focus on higher-level management skills, leadership theory and practice, organizational systems, and curriculum-building. The breadth of topics covered within an Ed.D. program offers students the opportunity to consider a range of career paths, and the depth of the degree enables them to apply their new skills to specific organizational challenges.

With the Vanderbilt Peabody College online Ed.D., students explore a broad range of topics through interactive course work. They also apply theory, research, and practice to a specific organizational problem through a capstone project.

Ed.D. graduates can pursue leadership roles in fields and settings such as:

  • Public policy
  • Training and development
  • HR development
  • Nonprofits
  • Academic medical centers
  • Higher education
  • Health care organizations and hospitals
  • Government and the military
  • Criminal justice
  • K-12 education

Ed.D. career titles may include:

  • Chief academic officer
  • Chief learning officer
  • Chief knowledge officer
  • Policymaker or analyst
  • Educational consultant
  • Director of human resources
  • Academic dean
  • Instructional coordinator
  • Vice provost
  • Superintendent

Ed.D. Salaries

Ed.D. students build their expertise through research and practice in order to drive change in top leadership positions. While an Ed.D. degree is an investment, it allows professionals to gain advanced skills and knowledge that can result in higher salaries.

The following shows the annual median salaries of Ed.D.-related careers in 2020, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics.

  • Human resource managers – $121,2201
  • Training and development managers – $115,6402
  • Top executives (e.g., chief learning officer) – $107,6803
  • Medical and health services managers – $104,2804
  • Postsecondary education administrators – $97,5005
  • Nonprofit or for-profit social and community service managers – $69,6006
  • Instructional coordinators – $66,9707

Learn More about the Peabody College Ed.D.

The Vanderbilt Peabody College online Ed.D. prepares students to hone their organizational expertise and develop the leadership skills needed to advance positive change in their organizations. Learn more about the program delivered through Peabody College—the nation’s No. 5 school of education, according to U.S. News & World Report.8 Request more information today.

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1 Bureau of Labor Statistics, Human Resource Managers. Accessed May 2021. arrow_upwardReturn to footnote reference

2 Bureau of Labor Statistics, Training and Development Managers. Accessed May 2021. arrow_upwardReturn to footnote reference

3 Bureau of Labor Statistics, Top Executives. Accessed May 2021. arrow_upwardReturn to footnote reference

4 Bureau of Labor Statistics, Medical and Health Services Managers. Accessed May 2021. arrow_upwardReturn to footnote reference

5 Bureau of Labor Statistics, Postsecondary Education Administrators. Accessed May 2021. arrow_upwardReturn to footnote reference

6 Bureau of Labor Statistics, Social and Community Service Managers. Accessed May 2021. arrow_upwardReturn to footnote reference

7 Bureau of Labor Statistics, Instructional Coordinators. Accessed May 2021. arrow_upwardReturn to footnote reference

8 U.S. News & World Report, Best Education Schools in 2022. Accessed May 2021. arrow_upwardReturn to footnote reference