Ph.D. vs. Ed.D., Which One Should You Choose
I enrolled in an Ed.D. program offered by Jackson State University in 2005. I compared the benefits of the Ed.D. and the Ph.D., after which I decided in favor of the former. Which of these two degrees you choose can be a career-defining moment. You need to select the route that matches your career objectives. For this, you should know more about each degree and learn the career opportunities they offer to make a final decision.
In this article, I’ll talk about the way these two degrees differ from each other to help you decide.
The ED.D. vs. the Ph.D.
An Ed.D. in education is ideal for teachers who prefer to take on education leadership roles. A Ph.D. in education is ideal for students planning to get ready for careers in academics and research. In the following two blocks, I will discuss the significant aspects of each degree.
An Ed.D. in Education
A Doctor of Education or an Ed.D. is a terminal degree designed to meet the exclusive requirements of experienced teachers and administrators who plan on pursuing academic leadership roles. These experts are engaged in various fields, varying from K-12 and college or universities to the government, healthcare, and the armed forces. The Ed.D. is not just for practitioners who want to conduct research in the field of education. Instead, it is for those who want to do research and use the results to create an impact on the domain of educational law and governance.
A Ph.D. in Education
This is a terminal degree designed for individuals who would like to take on a career in academia or research. While pursuing their degree programs, they choose courses that put forward a theory-based approach to education. In several cases, their goal is to help the field with their evidence-based research. Their aim is to publish their research in highly-regarded journals, share it at conferences, and teach future educators. Those pursuing Ph.D. work in a “publish or perish” setting, where publicizing their empirically-based understanding is the solitary thing that matters. Individuals who fail to get their research published in revered journals don’t last long. However, the ones who succeed end up getting and enjoying the spoils.
After knowing how these two degrees are different, you should consider the benefits of each and use your future career goals to make your ultimate choice. In reality, it is a win-win because getting either degree will throw open multiple doors for you in the domain of education.
Getting the Ed.D. helped me bag a tenure track assistant professor position in education at a Pennsylvania university, which is choosy with its faculty selection. Armed with this degree, I was able t rise to the post of the department chair and, finally, became a dean of education. Eventually, the Ed.D. helped me establish myself as a thought leader in the field of education. I leveraged it to commence my successful education company. So, you never know where your terminal degree will help you reach at the end.
I wish you the best of luck on your career path. When you make your ultimate choice, just remember to select a degree that aligns with what your heart says.