25 Best Online EdD Programs No GRE [2019 Ultimate Guide]

As a current leader in the education space, pursing a Doctor of Education is one of the most important decisions you can make in your professional career.

Online doctoral in education student in a library

Like most doctoral programs, there isn’t a “one size fits all” approach to completing an EdD program online.

Depending on the university, you can specialize in a particular concentration or area of study to further refine your learning experience.

Online EdD Programs with no GRE requirement

The following Doctor of Education Programs do not require a GRE to be considered for admission.

Again the concentrations offered can vary from school to school. However, having this list in your mind as you start to filter through your options is a great way to ensure that you pick a path that suits your desired career goals.

Doctor of Education Curriculum

Working toward your EdD requires covering a wide variety of topics and areas of study to prove your mastery of this discipline. Here’s a quick look at the curriculum you can expect to delve into as you complete the coursework that comprises this doctoral program:

  • Educational Administration and Leadership
  • Reading, Literacy, and Assessment
  • Educational Technology
  • Higher Education and Adult Learning
  • Curriculum, Instruction, and Assessment

Although some EdD programs require a dissertation, some universities now offer online doctoral programs without dissertation requirements.

While this is just a basic overview, having a firm idea in mind of your target areas of study can help you prepare for the demands and requirements ahead of you as you work toward an EdD.

Doctor of Education Admission Requirements

Once you’re ready to apply for admission to an EdD program, you’ll usually need to submit a transcript that confirms your completion of a master’s degree program from an accredited institution, as well as a statement of intent that explains your professional goals and commitment to the doctoral process.

In some cases, you’ll also be required to present your resume and curriculum vitae to the admissions office, along with a professional writing sample that shows off your research capabilities and writing skills. Having the written support of faculty members from your undergraduate and master’s programs also enters the admissions picture from time to time, so be prepared to reach out and acquire these recommendations as needed.

As an example of the typical requirements, here’s a screenshot from Walden University’s Doctor of Education admissions page:

Walden University admissions edd screenshot

You can gain admission to an EdD program without first having to take the GRE. Many schools evaluate prospective students for admission to their doctorate in education programs based on criteria other than test scores.

One thing that many colleges look at is how you’ve done at school in the past. The GPA that you earned during your previous higher-education program can play a big role in the admissions process. In fact, some schools use GPA scores to determine whether you need to take the GRE before getting into their programs. For example, you may need to submit test scores if you earned less than a 3.0 during your master’s program, but you can get away without testing if you did better than that in grad school.

Another important factor is the professional experience that you’ve accrued. Some schools set a minimum number of years that you must have been working in the education field. Others don’t list a specific requirement, but they may still pay attention to this factor when determining whether to admit you. Possessing professional certifications may boost your admissions chances as well.

What you have to say about yourself can be influential in the admissions process. Some schools will ask for this information in the form of a letter of intent that outlines why you want to enroll in the doctorate in education program. Others will request that you submit an essay. Either way, taking the time to carefully craft a well-thought-out, personal piece of writing may really grab the attention of the admissions team.

Schools also pay attention to what others say about you. Many doctoral programs ask you to submit a few letters of recommendation. Your reference letters should be from people who have seen you at work in graduate, community or professional roles.

Education Licensure

All states require K-12 public classroom teachers to be licensed.

Doctoral programs do not automatically grant this licensure, but many participants already possess their state’s certification before entering an EdD program. In many states, you are required to get an additional license in order to work as a school administrator.

Career Outlook and Salary Information

According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, EdD graduates earn between $66,090 and $175,603 based on location and experience.

List of Online Doctor of Education (EdD) Programs – No GRE Required

List of EdD colleges with online programs

The following universities offer online Doctor of Education programs in a wide-range of fields and do not require the GRE or have GRE-waivers available for qualified students.

Rank University Featured Image tbl-programs Location mdgtbl-description

Aspen University

Located in Colorado, Aspen University is a private university first founded in 1987. Aspen University has various online programs, particularly for those interested in furthering their education degree. In addition to their online Doctor of Education (Ed.D.) programs, there are also criminal justice, counseling, nursing, computer science, technology, and business programs available online.
  • Online Doctor of Education in Leadership and Learning – Health Care Administration and Leadership
  • Online Doctor of Education in Leadership and Learning – Higher Education Leadership
  • Online Doctor of Education in Leadership and Learning – K12 Educational Leadership
  • Online Doctor of Education in Leadership and Learning – Organizational Leadership
  • Online Doctor of Education in Leadership and Learning – Organizational Psychology

Capella University

There are over 142 undergraduate and graduate specializations, as well as over 1600 online courses at Capella University. Their Doctor of Education online program is one of the most popular, featuring multiple courses in advanced leadership in education and elementary education. Located in Minneapolis, Minnesota, the school operates multiple offices in 48 states and six countries.
  • Online Doctor of Education – Adult Education
  • Online Doctor of Education – Curriculum and Instruction
  • Online Doctor of Education – Educational Leadership and Management
  • Online Doctor of Education – Performance Improvement Leadership
  • Online Doctor of Education – Personalized Competency-Based Instruction
  • Online Doctor of Education – Reading and Literacy
  • Online Doctor of Education – Teacher Leader in Digital Transformation
  • Online Doctor of Education – Teacher Leader in K-12 Studies

City University of Seattle

This private school in Seattle has just over 6,500 students each year. While there are multiple degrees available through the Technology Institute, Washington Academy of Languages, and Schools of Arts and Sciences. However, it’s the education program that is the most popular. At the Albright School of Education at City University of Seattle, students can enroll in various fields of study for a Doctor of Education degree. The school was founded in 1989 and offers licensure and certification programs for students seeking higher education degrees. Their online programs offer full degree programs for those seeking education degrees.
  • Online Doctor of Education in Leadership

Clarkson College

In Omaha, Nebraska, Clarkson College offers several bachelor’s, master’s, and doctoral programs. As a private school, the school mainly focuses on health sciences, including degrees in nursing, medical imaging, radiologic technology, health care business, and health information management. The school typically has 1,250 students enrolled year-round with both online and physical courses.
  • Online Doctor in Health Care Education & Leadership

Concordia University

Established in 1974 with the merger of two schools, including Loyola College and Sir George Williams University, Concordia is a public, full-term university that offers both physical and online programs. The university is located in Montreal, Quebec, but it has an extensive online program. Students can earn 300 different undergraduate degrees and over 100 graduate programs. Their Doctor of Education program can be taken completely online through the Faculty of Arts and Sciences.
  • Online Doctorate in Education – Administrative Leadership
  • Online Doctorate in Education – Higher Education
  • Online Doctorate in Education – Instructional Leadership
  • Online Doctorate in Education – Professional Leadership, Inquiry, and Transformation
  • Online Doctorate in Education – Transformational Leadership

Drexel University

This private research college is located in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. The school was originally called the Drexel Institute of Art, Science, and Industry in the early 1900s, but it was renamed in 1936 to the Drexel Institute of Technology. Drexel University has several schools and colleges located on its campus, including the College of Arts and Sciences, Antoinette Westphal College of Media Arts and Design, School of Economics, Bennett S. LeBow College of Business, The Drexel Engineering Curriculum, and the College of Computing and Informatics.
  • Online Doctorate in Educational Leadership and Management

Edgewood College

Located in Madison, Wisconsin, Edgewood College’s main campus looks over the beautiful Lake Wingra. With a popular liberal arts program, students can take courses in nursing, education, business, and fine arts. Master’s programs are also available for marriage and family therapy, nursing, education, business, and sustainability. There are two doctoral programs available, including the Ed.D. in educational leadership. Edgewood College offers multiple programs for students who are working professionals as well, including an extensive online program.
  • Online Doctor of Education in Higher Education and Leadership Studies

Florida State University

As a research university, Florida State University is classified by the Carnegie Foundation for the Advancement of Teaching. There are 16 different colleges and 110 centers located at Florida State. As a public university, Florida State was also named as the 26th best university in the country as rated by US News & World Report. There are hundreds of majors to study, including degrees at the baccalaureate, master’s, and doctoral level. Their education program is one of the best in the country, and they offer online classes to teachers who are pursuing a higher degree.
  • Online Doctor of Education – Educational Leadership & Administration
  • Online Doctor of Education – Learning Design and Performance Technology

Johns Hopkins University

Established in 1876, Johns Hopkins University was founded by the famous entrepreneur and philanthropist John Hopkins. The university has an incredible reputation for excellence. Located in Maryland with campuses in Washington D.C. and international campuses in Italy, Singapore, and China, Johns Hopkins University has multiple colleges and schools. The medical school, nursing school, and the Bloomberg School of Public Health offer all types of degrees for undergraduate and graduate students. Their online Doctor of Education program is available at the School of Education.
  • Online Doctor of Education – Entrepreneurial Leadership in Education
  • Online Doctor of Education – Instructional Design for Online Teaching and Learning
  • Online Doctor of Education – Mind, Brain, and Teaching

Liberty University

Rated as one of the largest Christian universities in the world, there are 17 colleges at Liberty University including a school of law and school of medicine. Students can earn undergraduate and graduate degrees at Liberty, and there are multiple colleges to choose from on the Lynchburg, Virginia campus. The College of Osteopathic Medicine, Helms School of Government, Rawlings School of Divinity, School of Aeronautics, and the College of Applied Studies and Academic Success are a few of the most popular schools available. Their online programs include an accelerated graduate learning program for those who want a Doctor of Education.
  • Online Doctor of Education – Curriculum and Instruction
  • Online Doctor of Education – Educational Leadership
  • Online Doctor of Education in Curriculum and Instruction – Elementary Education
  • Online Doctor of Education in Curriculum and Instruction – Middle Grades Education
  • Online Doctor of Education in Curriculum and Instruction – Secondary Education
  • Online Doctor of Education in Curriculum and Instruction – Special Education

Maryville University

Located in Town and Country, Missouri, Maryville University of St. Louis was established in 1872 and offers almost 100 different degrees. Students can go into undergraduate, graduate, and doctoral programs easily. The school offers degrees in all 50 states and has campuses in 47 different countries as well. There are also six different colleges and schools available for study at Maryville, including the College of Arts and Sciences, School of Education, Walker College of Health Professions, John E. Simon School of Business, School of Adult and Online Education, and the Catherine McAuley School of Nursing. Students who wish to earn a Doctor of Education can attend online courses, which are designed to help working professionals.
  • Online Doctor of Education in Higher Education Leadership

Northcentral University

With its main offices in San Diego, California, Northcentral University is a fully online college founded in 1998 and offers undergraduate and graduate degrees. Their EdD degrees are offered through the School of Education. Students can also earn bachelor’s, master’s, specialist, and doctoral degrees at the school. Multiple colleges offer online degree programs including Business and Technology Management, Health Sciences, Marriage and Family Therapy, and Psychology.
  • Online Doctor of Education – Curriculum and Teaching
  • Online Doctor of Education – Early Childhood Education
  • Online Doctor of Education – E-Learning
  • Online Doctor of Education – English Language Learning
  • Online Doctor of Education – General Education
  • Online Doctor of Education – Global Training and Development
  • Online Doctor of Education – Instructional Leadership
  • Online Doctor of Education – International Education
  • Online Doctor of Education – Leadership in Higher Education
  • Online Doctor of Education – Learning Analytics in Higher Education
  • Online Doctor of Education – Learning Analytics in K12 Education
  • Online Doctor of Education – Nursing Education
  • Online Doctor of Education – Organizational Leadership
  • Online Doctor of Education – Special Education
  • Online Doctor of Education – Sport and Athletic Management

Northwest Nazarene University

Located in Nampa, Idaho, the Northwest Nazarene University is a private liberal arts school affiliated with the Christian church. There are two colleges at the school including the College of Adult and Graduate Studies and the College of Arts and Sciences. There are 60 different undergraduate programs, as well as 11 master’s degree programs and a few doctoral programs. Their online Doctor of Education program is one of the best in the country due to its online courses.
  • Online Doctor of Education in Educational Leadership

Oakland City University

Established in 1885, Oakland City University is a private university located in Oakland City, Indiana. The school has grown over the years, growing to over a 2,000 student enrollment. There are a few schools at Oakland City including the School of Arts and Sciences, School of Education, and School of Business. The school has multiple accreditations from the Higher Learning Commission and Association of Theological Schools. With a strong history of education for teachers, Oakland City has a rigorous and accredited online education degree program.
  • Online Doctor of Education – Curriculum & Instruction
  • Online Doctor of Education – Organizational Management
  • Online Doctor of Education – The Superintendency

Rowan University

Known as a public research university, Rowan University is located in Glassboro, New Jersey. There is also a medical campus located on a separate campus in Stratford, New Jersey. There are two other campuses in Camden, New Jersey. Founded in 1923, the university was once known as the Glassboro Normal School. There are 12 colleges and schools including the School of Osteopathic Medicine, Cooper Medical School of Rowan University, Graduate School of Biomedical Sciences, and Rohrer College of Business.
  • Online Doctor of Education in Educational Leadership

Saint Leo University

Located in St. Leo, Florida, this Roman Catholic private university was founded in 1889. Both the abbey and university are located next to each other. These schools were also named after Leo the Great and honors Leos XIII at the same time. Founded as the first Roman Catholic college in Florida, there are 40 educational schools and centers with online degree programs available in all states. Their Doctor of Education programs is completely offered online. The University’s Center for Online Learning was established in 1998 and has continued to grow over the past two decades.
  • Online Doctorate in Education Leadership – School Leadership

Samford University

This Christian private university is located in Homewood, Alabama. Originally founded as Howard College in 1841, Samford University is one of the oldest colleges in the United States. There are over 5,600 students enrolled at the college, and there are campuses within 44 states and 30 countries. There are multiple schools available at Samford University, including the Beeson Divinity School, Orlean Bullard Beeson School of Education, and Ida V. Moffett School of Nursing. The EdD program is available online through the education school.
  • Online Doctor of Education in Educational Leadership

St. Thomas University

As a Catholic university located in Miami Gardens, Florida, there are 35 different bachelor’s degree programs and 27 graduate programs. Five doctoral programs are available, including the online EdD program. There are multiple schools available at the university, including Biscayne School of Social and Human Sciences, School of Theology and Ministry, School of Arts and Education, School of Science, Technology, and Engineering Management, as well as the Gus Machado School of Business.
  • Online Doctor of Education in Leadership and Innovation

Trident University

The Trident University International is a fully online college with headquarters in California. There are multiple programs available at the associate, bachelor’s, master’s, and doctoral levels. Whether students want a business, health, or education degree, there are several programs available online through Trident University. There are five doctoral degree programs, including one in education for working professionals and teachers.
  • Online Doctor of Education in Educational Leadership – Higher Education
  • Online Doctor of Education in Educational Leadership – PK-12

University of Dayton

Founded in 1850, the University of Dayton, also known as UD, is a private research university located in the city of the same name in Ohio. Affiliated with the Roman Catholic church, the university has many degree programs at the bachelor’s, master’s, and doctoral levels. The main campus is also well known for its beautiful Immaculate Conception Chapel and China’s Suzhou Industrial Park. The School of Education and Health Sciences offers multiple education degrees, including the Doctor of Education program. In addition, students can go to the School of Business Administration, College of Arts and Sciences, School of Engineering, and School of Law. There are also 50 international programs to enroll in, including summer abroad programs offered through the Center for International Programs.
  • Online Doctor of Education in Leadership for Organizations

University of the Cumberlands

Founded in 2005, the University of the Cumberlands is a religious university established in Williamsburg, Kentucky. There are over 13,000 students enrolled at the university. It was originally called the Cumberland College until its name change in 2005. The university has four different colleges with degrees at the undergraduate and graduate programs. In addition to education degrees, there are PhD and Psy.D programs available in Psychology. Their Doctor of Education program is available in education leadership as well.
  • Online Doctor of Education in Educational Leadership

Walden University

Walden University is an online university with main offices in Minneapolis, Minnesota. There are multiple bachelor’s and master’s programs available, as well as a few doctoral programs. The educational degree programs are offered through the School of Education. The Doctor of Education is offered completely online and is available for students in over 25 different countries. The Richard W. Riley College of Education and Leadership enrolls over 16,000 students each year.
  • Online Doctor of Education – Curriculum, Instruction, and Assessment
  • Online Doctor of Education – Early Childhood
  • Online Doctor of Education – Educational Administration and Leadership
  • Online Doctor of Education – Educational Technology
  • Online Doctor of Education – Special Education


Frequently Asked Questions

What is a Doctor of Education Degree Program?

Gaining an EdD is all about standing on the cutting edge of the application of educational theory. Often geared toward current educators and those in leadership positions at learning institutions, this degree usually requires the completion of around 54 credit hours of work at the doctoral level.

Pursuing an EdD generally comes down to advancing your professional worth. With this training in hand, you can seek out and obtain positions in the education world that require strong organizational leadership.

Outside of this traditional application of the EdD degree, many corporations and members of the private sector also recognize the value of this kind of training, thereby creating an influx of executive officers and other individuals in management positions walking down this educational path.

How Do You Get a Doctor of Education?

Earning an EdD requires committing to either a traditional learning path – specifically, on campus classes and more rigid semester schedules – or signing up for an online degree program. As with most other decisions in your educational career, making a choice between these options comes down to preference and any financial assistance offered by your current employer or local scholarship funds.

Most individuals who purse an EdD are usually established professionals, so working toward this degree on your own time via online schooling is usually the more flexible option.

What is the Difference Between an EdD and a PhD in Education?

The difference between an EdD and a PhD in Education revolves around one fundamental question: What are you looking to do with this kind of advanced degree? Yes, there is plenty of overlap between the two, but taking on the PhD route is primarily an academic endeavor, while an EdD goes beyond research into the actual application of educational theory.

As with any degree, there are no guarantees when it comes to landing your dream job or attaining the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics average salary. Your prior work experience, location, and industry must all be factored into the equation.

Most individuals who travel down the EdD path do so with the intention of working as school district superintendents or directors of student services at an educational institution, making roughly $109,969 a year according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS). Alternately, a PhD in this same field usually results in serving as a university-level professor, bringing in about $74,040 in the same time span.

Is a Doctor of Education Worth It?

So now that you’re familiar with everything that goes into acquiring an EdD, it’s time to answer one final question: Is all of this work worth it? Naturally, there is no universal answer to this question. Instead, a better course of action is to understand your motivations before you sign up for classes.

Are you interested in tackling a new academic challenge? Does your current employer want you to complete this kind of program as a form of professional development and enrichment? What do you plan to do once you have this degree in hand?

Answering these questions, as well as any others that you come across, can help you make the right call when it comes time to plan out your academic future.

You work in education because you believe in the importance of teaching and influencing others. To increase your impact, consider furthering your education with a Doctor of Education degree. Earning your EdD will help you become a respected leader in your field who makes a difference for students and teachers.

What Is the GRE?

The Graduate Record Examination is a test for evaluating your readiness for grad school.

The exam is graded based on your results from the following sections:

  • Analytical Writing
  • Verbal Reasoning
  • Quantitative Reasoning

Students may also have an additional unscored section or a portion that’s just for the testing company’s research purposes.

Is the GRE Required for an Online EdD Program?

Many universities do not require GRE scores. Because the exam is limited in its ability to predict academic success, many schools prefer to rely on other admission criteria. Other universities do ask for scores but regularly grant waivers based on certifications, professional experience or high GPA scores.

What are Test Optional Colleges?

Some universities give you the option of submitting GRE scores but don’t require them. Even still, sending good scores may boost your chances of admission. However, if you took the test and didn’t do as well as you’d like, it might be better to withhold your scores from test-optional schools.

Why Should I Pursue an EdD?

Earning a doctorate in the education field gives you the opportunity to be a leader among educators and to enact changes that will benefit students and the learning process. With this degree, you can continue to teach in the classroom, or you can move into an administrative role in a school or a district. For the opportunity to train the next generation of educators, doctorate holders can also take teaching positions at the college level.

What Kind of Professional Experience Is Needed to Be Accepted into an EdD Program?

EdD experience requirements vary among universities. Some schools don’t list a specific length of time in the field, and others have a short requirement, such as three years. On the other hand, there are some schools that ask for 10 years of experience, including several years in a leadership capacity.

Accelerated Degree logo
My Degree Finder
Sponsored Schools
My Degree Finder
Sponsored Schools
This article is brought to you by
Isaac Collins
Isaac Collins
Joy Miller
Joy Miller
Hannah Davis
Hannah Davis