EdD - Adult Education Degree - Qualitative

Doctor of Education in Teaching and Learning: Adult Learning (Qualitative Research)

Offered By: College of Doctoral Studies

What Is an Adult Education Degree?

The Doctor of Education (EdD) in Teaching and Learning with an Emphasis in Adult Learning degree is designed for those who wish to not only teach, but to lead collegiate and adult learners. This doctorate in adult education program helps graduates prepare for and practice the research-based strategies that improve adult learning.

Adult education degree holders from GCU may become leaders at the college and university-level, striving to bring positive experiences to post-secondary and adult learners. Not only will adult education degree learners study industry trends, they will also implement new strategies based on research they've personally conducted.

The College of Doctoral Studies at GCU has identified goals within adult learning that graduates must meet:

  • Evaluating adult learning theories
  • Synthesizing adult learning theory with worldview
  • Analyzing the nature of cognitive coaching
  • Supporting the necessity of transformative learning
  • Proposing applications of adult learning strategies

What Is a Qualitative Doctorate (EdD) in Adult Education?

Doctoral degrees allow students to engage in their own research and bring advancements to their field. This EdD program engages students in qualitative research into adult learning to generate new research and improve methods of adult learning.

Qualitative research is a form of exploratory research methods that focuses on finding meaning and motivation through observation and analysis. Throughout the qualitative EdD program, you will employ qualitative research methodology to conduct your dissertation.

Learn to Help Others Learn Better

Leadership and research in adult education are the main focus of this EdD in Adult Education. Graduates will complete original research projects with a focus on adult students. This research is conducted with the purpose of uncovering new knowledge and theories about adult learning. Graduates then apply these new ideas with adult learners in order to create positive educational outcomes, such as mentorship, coaching and collaboration.

Research topics can come from anywhere in the doctorate of adult learning degree program coursework. Graduates might be inspired to learn more as they:

  • Explore practical foundations of education
  • Examine current educational practices
  • Reflect on child and adult teaching and learning theories
  • Conceptualize educational philosophy
  • Dive into existing academic research to study methodology

Careers With a Doctorate in Adult Education Degree

Graduates of the EdD in Teaching and Learning with an Emphasis in Adult Learning degree are ready to be educators who impact adult lives. They may find work at:

  • Junior colleges
  • Two or four-year colleges
  • Universities
  • Professional schools
  • Technical programs
  • Trade schools

Those who have backgrounds in certain fields may also find work at business schools or in computer and management training.

If you desire to make a significant impact in education by teaching and coaching other adults, an adult education degree may be the right path for you. Find out by learning more about the Doctor of Education in Teaching and Learning with an Emphasis in Adult Learning degree program at GCU

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TOTAL PROGRAM CREDITS & COURSE LENGTH:
Total Program Credits: 60
Online: 8 weeks
[More Info]
TRANSFER CREDITS:
Up to 9 doctoral credits
PROGRAM TUITION RATE:
Online: $695 per credit [More Info]

Course List

Major:
60 credits
Total Degree Requirements:
60 credits

Program Core Courses

Course Description

This course introduces doctoral learners to the principle elements of research, scholarly writing, and effective argumentation. Learners are made aware of the dispositions and expectations of doctoral researchers as well as the University’s overarching values and beliefs regarding research and the responsibility of scholars to contribute new knowledge to their respective fields of study. Learners begin the process of identifying a researchable dissertation topic and are acquainted with appropriate scholarly resources that support the development of the dissertation.

Course Description

In this course, learners are introduced to the critical reading of scholarly qualitative and quantitative literature at the doctoral level. Learners also explore the concept of synthesizing the scholarly literature to identify problems and problem spaces that emerge to form a researchable topic of study. The application of scholarly argumentation from the extant literature to defend the need for a research study is discussed.

Course Description

The course presents a foundation of historic and philosophic ideas in teaching and learning. Learners are encouraged to consider the connections between history, philosophy, teaching, and learning as well as the influence of these concepts on the development of a personal philosophy of teaching and learning.

Course Description

The course provides a chronological overview of learning theories and their common applications. Connections between theory and philosophy of teaching and learning are explored.

Course Description

In this course, learners are introduced to key components of qualitative and quantitative research designs and the means to critically appraise the application of research designs as observed in the scholarly literature. The University's core research designs are presented. Consideration is given to the initial selection and defense of a research design to address a problem that emerged from the extant literature.

Course Description

This residency allows learners to continue developing their skills as academic researchers. Learners will have hands-on experience applying quantitative and qualitative design principals to develop the foundational elements for their potential dissertation studies. Prerequisite: RES-850, RES-825, RES-831, or RCS-831.

Course Description

This course provides an introduction to the sampling, data collection, and data analysis methods employed in qualitative and quantitative research designs. Learners explore the alignment of sampling, data collection, and data analysis methods to the research topic, research questions, and research design. The course positions learners to select qualitative or quantitative designs for their dissertation studies. Prerequisite: RES-831.

Course Description

The course presents theories and models of adult learning for consideration. Potential applications of the theories and models are discussed as are current trends in adult learning.

Course Description

This course connects key concepts in worldview to adult learning. Learners are encouraged to synthesize worldview and adult learning concepts as they move toward the development or refinement of a personal worldview.

Course Description

In this course, learners explore the basic components of GCU qualitative core research designs including descriptive, case study, and phenomenology. The nature of epistemological foundations and the structure of problem statements, purpose statements, research questions, data sources, collection and analysis approaches are discussed in the context of each design.

Course Description

In this course, learners differentiate the epistemological foundations and explore the data trustworthiness, research ethics, and potential for bias in descriptive, case study, and phenomenology research designs. The process of building a rationale for design choice and aligning the research questions, interview questions, problem statement, and purpose statement is addressed. Sources of qualitative data are introduced for each design, and ethical aspects of research are discussed. Prerequisite: RES-841.

Course Description

The course outlines the process of transformational learning and discusses its application to adult learning. The notions of practitioners as transformational catalysts and the influence of transformation learning on adult learning design are also addressed.

Course Description

This course addresses the current mindset surrounding the notion of collaboration and proposes a paradigm shift to a mindset that redefines collaboration and integrates it with coaching and mentoring. The course includes a discussion of strategies employed by coaches/mentors to support leadership and ensure a positive organizational culture.

Course Description

In this residency, learners orally present and defend an expanded design of their preliminary dissertation research from RSD-851. Emphasis is placed on developing the qualitative dissertation. Prerequisite: RES-843.

Course Description

The course considers the application of adult learning theory and philosophy of adult learning as they lead to solutions for enhanced teaching and learning. Connections between theory and practice are highlighted.

Course Description

In this course, learners apply the skills of the practitioner-scholar. They are self-motivated and committed to reflective practice. They actively seek input from other scholars while continuing to design independent research under the guidance of the dissertation committee. Prerequisite: RES-871, TLC-885, RSD-883, or RSD-884.

Course Description

In this course, learners explore qualitative data collection techniques and sources of qualitative data in the context of answering the research questions posed by a study. Consideration is given to the recognition of data saturation and the management of data. Learners continue to work with their respective dissertation chairs to prepare a written statement of data collection, and management activities. Prerequisite: RES-843.

Course Description

In this course, learners apply the skills of the practitioner-scholar. They are self-motivated and committed to reflective practice. They actively seek input from other scholars while continuing to design and/or conduct independent research under the guidance of the dissertation committee. Prerequisite: TLC-955.

Course Description

In this course, learners focus on the interpretation of qualitative data to produce written research findings, results, and implications. Learners continue to work with their respective dissertation chairs and apply information from this course to move ahead in the dissertation process. Prerequisite: RES-873.

Course Description

In this course, learners apply the skills of the practitioner-scholar. They are self-motivated and committed to reflective practice. They actively seek input from other scholars while continuing to design and/or conduct independent research under the guidance of the dissertation committee. Prerequisite: TLC-960.

Program Locations

GCU Online Student


Pursue a next-generation education with an online degree from Grand Canyon University. Earn your degree with convenience and flexibility with online courses that let you study anytime, anywhere.

GCU Evening Student


Grand Canyon University’s evening programs cater to the demands of working professionals who prefer an in-person learning environment. Our night classes meet just once per week and offer the interaction and discussion of a typical college classroom.

* Please note that this list may contain programs that are not presently offered as program availability may vary depending on class size, enrollment and other contributing factors. If you are interested in a program listed herein please first contact your University Counselor for the most current information regarding availability of the program.

Program Domains

* Please refer to the Academic Catalog for more information. Program subject to change.

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