Leland, A., Firestone, W., & Perry, J.A. (accepted). Examining cohort models in the education doctorate. Studies in Graduate and Postdoctoral Education.
Purpose: This paper presents a thematic analysis on cohort-based teaching and learning from four, education doctorate degree (EdD) programs. Recommendations are then presented to other scholars engaging in research on cohort-based, graduate degree programs.
Design/Methodology/Approach: Yin’s (2018) embedded, multiple case study approach guided the design of this study. Data collection consisted of three- to four-day site visits to each program and included the following data sources: program documents (e.g., handbooks, syllabi, third-party evaluations), class observations, and semi-structured interviews with students, faculty, and program directors.
Findings: This study describes how collaboration and collective learning were key components in each program’s coursework and milestone expectations, arguing that such an emphasis contributed to opportunities for collaboration and collective learning experiences.
Originality/value: Research has documented a number of outcomes associated with cohort-based programs in terms of group dynamics. The authors examine this quality further by showing how specific structures and practices within each program’s cohort model not only supported peer collaboration, but overall student learning.
Keywords: cohorts; educational leadership; education doctorate; EdD programs, social practice theory; collaboration; community
Article Classification: Research paper