Admissions Criteria
General Admissions Information

The delivery modality chosen for the PhD program reflects the professional needs of students in various leadership roles. 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, or equivalent. 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 whose first language is not English will be required to complete the TOEFL exam. The Ph.D. program's minimum TOEFL requirement is 550 (paper version) and 79 (internet version).  Detailed information for international applicants.

Since the program is designed for reflective leaders, students will be expected to demonstrate, via resume or curriculum vitae 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 others in the program. 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.

There are no specific course prerequisites to be admitted into the program but students would be advised to have graduate level courses in statistics and research design prior to the beginning of their program. Applicants who do not have this background may be asked to strengthen their background through self-directed learning prior to the beginning of their first research methods course.

Once accepted into the program, students must submit a $150 deposit (if international student, please refer to international requirements for deposit) and register for classes. Once students are registered, they receive usernames and passwords for email and access to Eastern's online learning platform, intranet, and library resources.

Early Admission Deadline

All students are selected for admission to the Ph.D. program based on academic preparation, leadership experience, and alignment with Eastern’s mission. Candidates with superior academic qualifications will be considered for a $1,000 merit grant, to be applied to their tuition in the first semester of enrollment. A limited number of grants will be awarded to selected applicants in each academic year.

An early admission deadline (November 1st) is available for applicants seeking seats in the following Fall cohort. This deadline is the best choice for those who wish to be considered for a merit scholarship before the awards are depleted.

Application Procedures

Now accepting applications for the Fall 2019 cohort!

Complete applications are due January 15th for the following Fall cohort. Admissions committee decisions are issued no later than March 1st. As space is available, a second round of application reviews will be conducted. Applications completed by March 15th will receive 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 and wait list are full.

Application Requirements

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.
  • Leadership Record: A one-or-two page narrative should describe the applicant's five or more years of leadership experience. The record will be evaluated on the basis of the degree of supervisory responsibilities, entrepreneurial initiatives, professional credentials, and the level of management position(s) within the respective organizations.
  • Statement of Purpose: Applicants must submit a four-page essay addressing how the program goals coincide with the student's personal and professional objectives. Applicants should address what their goals will be once they obtain the degree. The essay will be evaluated on the basis of content, presentation, and evidence of doctoral-level writing ability.
  • 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.
  • Writing Sample: The writing sample should demonstrate the applicant's ability in research, writing, analysis, and problem solving. The writing sample should be single-authored and reflect the applicant's current writing ability. A copy of a research thesis or other research project that showcases the student's prior academic work will serve as an excellent writing sample. If the thesis or project is older than five years, it is recommended to provide an additional current writing sample.
  • Research Methods Record: A one-page document should highlight evidence of the applicant's research aptitude and/or experience. The document might reference coursework in qualitative and quantitative research, statistics, or mathematics; standardized test scores >50 percentile on the GRE (Eastern's test center code = 2220) or GMAT (Eastern's test center code = PND-SG-31); experience with quantitative tools, measures, or statistics; and/or a prior research project, report, or paper. Test scores and papers used as evidence should be included as separate documents. Download form for Research Methods Record.
  • Application Fee: A $75 non-refundable application fee is required for all applicants.

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

If we can be of further assistance to you, please contact us at: or 800-732-7669.

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.