Storey, V. A., Caskey, M. M., Hesbol, K. A., Marshall, J. E., Maughan, B., & Dolan, A. W. (2014). Examining EdD dissertations in practice: The Carnegie Project on the Education Doctorate. International HETL Review, Volume 5, Article 2.
Marion Philadelphia’s EdD dissertation, “Will School-Based Online Faculty Development be an Effective Tool for Their Professional Growth,” received “Honorable Mention” by the Carnegie Project on the Education Doctorate (CPED). Philadelphia, who earned her EdD in Educational Psychology from Rossier in 2013, is one of three winners of the nationwide CPED competition to honor exemplary Dissertations in Practice, alternates to traditional dissertations based upon professional practice programs. was her dissertation chair.
FORM A: EdD Dissertation Registration and Committee Sign-Off (page 7)
There is controversy in the United States regarding the issue of how the Ed.D. degree compares to the Ph.D in education. In theory, the two degrees are expected to constitute overlapping but distinct categories, where the Ed.D. is a degree that prepares educational practitioners who can solve educational problems using existing knowledge, and the Ph.D. in education is the more theoretical of the two as a traditional social science research degree that prepares students for careers as scholars and academics, often from a particular disciplinary perspective (e.g., sociology of education). In reality, however, distinctions between the two degree programs are generally minimal in both curriculum and dissertation requirements. One study on dissertations submitted between 1950 and 1990 indicated that there were no differences between the two degrees regarding basic versus applied research or the significance of the findings. Nonetheless, that same study indicated that "PhD dissertations contained more multivariate statistics, had wider generalizability, and were more prevalent in certain areas of concentration," whereas "EdD dissertations contained more survey research and were most prevalent in educational administration research." The difference is attributed primarily to which type of degree a particular school offers and if existing research or original research is required in the dissertation.