It is an exhilarating time to be part of the higher education system. Universities and colleges are turning more resources toward understanding how they can illuminate different challenges that students face, how to improve the student experience, and how to effectively lead in an ever-changing academic landscape. A Doctor of Education in Higher Education Leadership prepares graduates with the leadership abilities to tackle these challenges. Here are 3 key benefits of earning an EdD in Higher Education:
1) Learn strategies for tackling social and technological challenges
Educators and students are grappling with tough educational environments. In a recent article in Educational Leadership by Anthony Jackson, Jackson advocated for education that questions and investigates different perspectives. The ability to unpack different ideas is a critical one, for both students and administrators. Educational leaders can spearhead discussions on campuses with faculty and students to create safe spaces within their academic community. By working to understand different perspectives, administrators can foster school-wide conversations about justice, activism and education and offer guidance to students who are interested in becoming more active on-campus and off-campus. In addition to keeping pace with a changing social atmosphere on campuses, higher education leaders must learn how to manage a changing technological one. Both outside and inside the classroom, technology is emerging that can help facilitate learning in the classroom and improve university operations. Leaders are faced with deciding which technologies to invest in to make the lives of their students and faculty more fulfilling and secure. These technologies also bring added risks to security and may strain budgets if invested in too hastily. Leaders must take pause and explore how new technological investments will affect curriculum and student interactions.
2) Delve into topics of interest with your dissertation
Having the opportunity to discuss important topics in education is one of the many benefits of enrolling in a doctorate program. By diving into research, you have the chance to fully comprehend pressing issues in higher education and expand your investigations as you learn more throughout your study. The final result is a dissertation that dives deeper into subjects that are important to you as an educator and gives you a chance to find solutions that you can implement as a leader in higher education. Being immersed in relevant higher education topics from day one in your coursework means you can start putting into practice what you are learning – in real time.
3) Stay Competitive in a Complex Education Environment
For administrators and educators, it is a growing challenge to differentiate themselves from fellow universities to attract a strong student body that can create a community of individuals who are dedicated to reaching their full academic and civic potential. In addition, universities are tasked with preparing graduates, as more employers aren’t training entry-level workers, according to the National Bureau of Economic Research. Over 20 million students attended college or university in 2016 according to the National Center for Educational Statistics – and they are seeking out a range of amenities on campus as well as the ability to express themselves in extracurricular activities. They are interested in classes in a range of subjects with challenging material with fellow students who are equally engaged in the material. It is a tall order for higher education leaders. However, they know the payoff is equally high. Strong college communities translate into engaged students inside and outside of the classroom and offer them the chance to blossom into members of a global community who can excel in their chosen careers.
For educational professionals who strive to be seen as leaders in higher education, earning your EdD in Higher Education Leadership is an important step. As part of an EdD program, you can be part of conversations about the challenges of a changing academic environment with fellow professionals and can learn how to incorporate research to create solutions while working with top minds in the field.