Doctor of Education

The EdD is a research degree for experienced professionals from education and related fields who would like to extend their professional understanding and develop skills in research, evaluation and high-level reflection on practice. The programme aims to foster professional development through research as well as meeting the requirements of rigour and originality expected of a doctorate. It includes assessed taught courses, research-focused workshops and supervised original research. Through a strong group dynamic, the intention of the programme is to foster cohort solidarity, develop inter- and intra-personal skills that are critical for teamwork, while simultaneously developing writing, research, critical, analytical, communication, leadership and collaborative skills to the highest possible standards. The intention is to educate an existing and emergent educational leadership in the Irish context to the highest possible international standards. Areas of Professional Focus and contact details can be found below:

Areas of Professional Focus

Arts, Creativity & Music Education is relevant for those in all aspects of arts and music education practice such as teachers, artist-educators, music educators, music facilitators, arts administrators and leaders in the arts or music sectors. This area of professional focus provides a pathway to explorations of:

  • Theories of creativity, imagination and music education from multiple perspectives
  • Teaching and learning in the arts and music in formal, informal and non-formal contexts
  • Social movements worldwide and how they are manifest in arts and music education practices
  • Policy perspectives on arts education and music education in Ireland and internationally

Contact: Dr Regina Murphy - | +353 1 700 9011

This area of professional focus is geared towards education professionals who want to develop dedicated expertise in the allied fields of assessment, learning and teaching.

Under the tutelage of scholars of international repute, students become part of a cohort of like-minded people from diverse education backgrounds who explore a range of specialist modules in the first two years of the programme.

Thereafter, students progress to undertake a doctoral dissertation that addresses an issue of significant import to the education community.

Contact: Dr. Zita Lysaght - | +353 1 700 9228

The Digital Learning area of professional focus will enable participants to critically engage with the key questions, developments, opportunities and challenges of teaching, learning and assessment in the digital age. Participants will:

  • critique contemporary theory, research and practice, and consider the implications for learning and teaching in the 21st century
  • critically examine policy developments in relation to Digital Learning
  • explore future trends and the potentials of new and emerging digital technologies for education

Contact: Dr Enda Donlon - | +353 1 700 9120

The Education for Sustainable Futures area of professional focus on this Doctor of Education programme will enable participants to critically engage with the key concepts, contexts, developments, opportunities and challenges of teaching, learning and assessment in education for sustainable development, global citizenship and climate change. Participants will:

  • critique contemporary theory, research and practice, and the framings of education about/ for sustainable development, global citizenship, and climate change,
  • critically examine national and international policy developments in relation to education for sustainable development, and related areas,
  • Differentiate between ‘tame’ and ‘wicked’ sustainability challenges,
  • Identify signals and drivers of sustainable and unsustainable practices,
  • Critically reflect on pedagogies that promote sustainability-oriented ecologies of learning,
  • Analyse the role of futures thinking in envisioning plausible, possible and preferred futures and in preparing for desired futures, and,
  • Engage in futures studies/ education for sustainability research.

Contact: Dr Charlotte Holland - | +353 1 700 9145

Ethical and Multi-Denominational Education

This area of specialism will allow students to focus on the varied approaches taken to ethical and multi-denominational education in Ireland and beyond. In Irish and international contexts, we see an increasing emergence of values education in:

  • Recent curriculum policy and frameworks from a multi-denominational perspective e.g. ERBE/Learn Together (Educate Together)/ Goodness Me/Goodness You (Community National Schools)
  • Connects between primary and post-primary level values education e.g. Core Values frameworks for ETB and Educate Together schools
  • Theoretical literature, national and international (comparison with Scandanavia, UK, France)
  • At Initial Teacher Education level with Ethical Education programmes

Contact: Dr Jones Irwin - | +353 1 700 9227

If you are interested in educational issues that focus on inclusion of marginalized learners, providing educational equality, equity and excellence for all, then this APF may be the one for you.

It explores policy, research and practice on equality in relation to a number of areas, for example, inclusion, special educational needs, disability and social justice while adopting an intersectionality approach; considering other impacting circumstances such as poverty, race, ethnicity, social inclusion, creed, economic status, gender and other marginalizing factors.

Contact: Dr Fiona King - | +353 1 700 9066

This Area of Professional Focus:

  • Designed for individuals who wish to develop their careers as leaders in various organisational settings
  • Offers participants the opportunity to critically review and systematically apply key theories of leadership and evaluation
  • Provides participants with the analytic and practical skills and tools to lead and manage in complex settings
  • Gives individuals the opportunity to explore and apply theories and practices of evaluation allowing them to engage with internal and external quality assurance processes

Contact: Prof Joe O’Hara - | +353 1 700 9142

This Professional Learning and Teacher Education Area of Professional Focus:

  • combines research, theory, policy, and practice in exploring how educators learn across the continuum (university-based teacher education and professional learning, induction and mentoring, on-site professional learning, online professional learning)
  • provides rich opportunities for research in the learner’s own professional practice/policy setting
  • integrates complementary modules on pedagogies of professional learning and approaches to policy analysis
  • for educators from a range of contexts including schools, professional bodies, professional learning organisations, the Inspectorate, higher education institutions, and policy-makers
  • Global trends, international and national perspectives will feature
  • May appeal to those involved in supporting the professional learning of educators in a range of educational and organisational contexts

Contact: Dr Alan Gorman - | +353 1 700 9260