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Admissions Criteria

The Ph.D. in Organizational Leadership Program is intended for "reflective practitioners," individuals who will pursue this degree online while continuing in their current responsibilities. Potential students include managers in business, educational administrators, nonprofit and community leaders, church and denominational leaders, adjunct faculty, and others. The delivery methodology chosen for the program reflects the needs of these students. Admitted students will have earned a master's degree from a regionally accredited institution and will have graduated with at least a 3.2 grade point average on a 4.0 scale. International students from foreign institutions will be considered on a case-by-case basis, contingent upon specialized, national, or other accreditations of their institutions.

Students are required to complete the GRE, MAT or GMAT and submit official scores to the university as part of their admissions file. Test scores provided must be within the last five years.

Students whose first language is not English will be required to complete the TOEFL exam. The Ph.D. program's minimum TOEFL requirement is 577 (paper version), 233 (computer version), and 90 (internet version).  Detailed information for international applicants can be found HERE.

Because this is a leadership program designed for reflective practitioners, students will be expected to demonstrate via resume and supporting documents, at least five years of professional practice in a leadership capacity. This will provide both a context for the learning that takes place in the program and a means of contributing to the learning of one's cohort members. Professional practice could include teaching experience, mid-level to executive-level management within a for-profit or not-for-profit organization, public service in an elected or appointed position with legal or fiduciary responsibilities, company proprietorship, ministry experience that requires professional credentials, and educational administration. The program is not designed for those who wish to move into entry-level management positions or to acquire professional standing, as these are assumed.

There are no specific prerequisites to be admitted into the program but students would be advised to have graduate level courses in statistics, research design and finance prior to the beginning of their program. Applicants who do not have this background may be asked to strengthen their background through additional course work prior to the beginning of their first research methods course.
Transfer of Credits:

A maximum of nine credits of doctoral level work in the concentration may be transferred at the discretion of the Admissions Committee.

Application Procedures:

Complete applications are due January 15th for the following September cohort. Admissions committee decisions are issued no later than March 1st. As space is available, a second and third round of application reviews will be conducted according to the following schedule:

Applications are due by March 15th followed by admissions committee decisions no later than May 1st. After the March 15th deadline, applications will continue to be accepted and reviewed until the fall cohort is full.
To apply for acceptance, a student must submit all of the following:
Application: The application form may be submitted online.

Official Transcripts: Official transcripts must be submitted from all institutions of higher education that the applicant attended. (Download transcript request form).

Current Resume or Curriculum Vitae.

Three Letters of Recommendation: Of these recommendations, at least one must be from an academic source. Letters must be accompanied by recommendation forms.  The recommendations should focus on the applicant’s ability to do academic work and potential for leadership.  Recommendations are accepted via email with a PDF attachment, fax, and/or mail directly from the recommender.

Statement of Purpose: Applicants must submit a four-page essay addressing how the program goals coincide with the student's personal and professional objectives. The essay will be evaluated on the basis of content, presentation, and evidence of doctoral-level writing ability.

Writing Sample: The writing sample should demonstrate the applicant's ability in research, writing, analysis, and problem solving. A copy of a research thesis or other research project that showcases the student's prior work will work well as a writing sample.  The writing sample should be single-authored and no more than three years old.

Leadership Record: A one-or-two page narrative should describe the applicant’s five years of leadership experience.  The record will be evaluated on the basis of degree of supervisory responsibilities, entrepreneurial initiatives, professional credentials, and the level of management position(s) within the respective organizations.

Application Fee: A non-refundable application fee is required for all applicants.

GRE, MAT or GMAT Score: The test must have been taken within the last five years of the application.

DOLE Form- Disclosure of online learning abilities.

Review of completed application materials may result in an invitation for an interview with the program director and/or other members of the Admissions Committee.

If we can be of further assistance to you, please contact us at: aschreib@eastern.edu or call 484-654-2365.

Please note that there are no scholarships available to PhD students at this time. However, since students are considered full-time graduate students (18 credits per year), low interest student loans may be available for US citizens. Please visit or call the Financial Aid Office (610-225-5201) for further information.

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