Doctoral Research

The Russell Sage College program leading to the doctorate in Educational Leadership requires each doctoral candidate to develop as a researcher, both individually and as a member of a research team. As members of a collaborative research team, the candidates conceptualize and conduct a research that critically and comprehensively examines a problem of practice (POP), makes a contribution to the field and to the specific district or organization(s) involved, addresses the Sage conceptual framework, and advances professional knowledge and skill.

Doctoral research problems are selected by the program faculty in consultation with the leadership of the partnership educational organizations, executive coaches and the Director of Research.

The doctoral research experience serves two important and related purposes:

  • Each candidate develops and demonstrates a set of research skills appropriate for the awarding of an Ed.D. in Educational Leadership.
  • Field leaders gain valuable information and insight about  a current problem of practice through the efforts of the individual Russell Sage College doctoral candidate research and benefit from a more comprehensive study presented by the doctoral research team.

Doctoral candidates are given the opportunity to express interest in one or more of the selected research problems of practice prior to the identification of doctoral research teams.

Once assigned to a doctoral research problem, team members collaboratively develop a plan for the overall research effort. In that plan the specific research to be conducted by each team member is explicitly identified. After the successful individual defenses occur, research teams present their research at a colloquium of faculty, executive coaches and invited school district and state policy leaders. Subsequent publication and presentations are also encouraged.

The annual Research Colloquium is the culminating activity in the Ed.D. program. In this way, the Russell Sage College doctoral candidates fulfill the individual and team research requirements for the Ed.D. in Educational Leadership and contribute in a significant way to the field as well as the more general literature on educational leadership. The Research Colloquium supports the Sage model of school district-university cooperation in leadership development and research.

Cohort I

Impact of changing demographics on school systems.   
Issues impacting the current and future pool of system leaders.
Leadership succession and how it impacts the organizational health of a school system.
Impact of accountability measures, including but not limited to student assessment, on educational organizations.
Changing power and/or authority dynamics within educational organizations particularly as those dynamics influence and are influenced by system leaders.       

Cohort II

Emerging Initiatives for Leadership Development
Leading in a Time of Scarce Resources
Technology Leadership
Leadership and School Climate

Cohort III

System-level Instructional Leadership
Alternative Approaches to Education
Leadership Development Initiatives

System- level Leadership and School Climate

Cohort IV

The Evolving Role of the Superintendent in the First Decade of the 21st Century            
System Leaders’ Administrative Practices and Their Effect on School Climate and Morale
The Effect of Changing Demographics on School Systems            

Cohort V

System Level Leadership and Change Initiatives/Process
Race to the Top and Alternative Approaches to Education
Pursuing Alternatives:  The Fiscal Crisis and Increasing Educational Demands Converge

Cohort VI

Cohort NYC 1

Dissertations from individual students in this cohort:

Cohort VII

Dissertations from individual students in this cohort:

Cohort VIII

Dissertations from individual students in this cohort:

NYC Cohort 2N

Dissertations from individual students in this cohort:

NYC Cohort 2Y

Dissertations from individual students in this cohort:

Cohort 9

Cohort NYC 3