Jill Alexa Perry
Associate Professor of Practice

Associate Professor of Practice
Educational Foundations, Organizations, and Policy

Dr. Jill Alexa Perry is an Associate Professor of Practice in the Educational Foundations, Organizations and Policy at the University of Pittsburgh. Her research focuses on professional doctorate preparation in education, organizational change in higher education, and faculty leadership roles. Currently she is researching the ways EdD programs teach practitioners to utilize research evidence. She teaches and coaches how to teach Improvement Science in EdD programs. Her books include The Improvement Science Dissertation in Practice, The EdD and the Scholarly Practitioner, and In their own words: A journey to the stewardship of the practice in education.

Dr. Perry is a graduate of the University of Maryland, where she received her PhD in International Education Policy. She holds an MA in Higher Education Administration and a BA in Spanish and International Studies from Boston College. She has over 25 years of experience in leadership and program development in education and teaching experience at the elementary, secondary, undergraduate, and graduate levels in the US and abroad. She is a Fulbright Scholar (Germany) and a returned Peace Corps Volunteer (Paraguay).

Instructional Interests

  • Improvement Science Inquiry
  • Higher Education administration courses
  • International Education policy

Scholarly Interests

  • Professional doctorate preparation in education
  • Organizational change in higher education
  • Faculty leadership roles
  • Research evidence use by EdD graduates
  • Improvement Science Methodology

Selected Grants

WT Grant Foundation
$500,000 grant, 2017-2019
PI, The Education Doctorate: A Promising Strategy to Promote Use of Research Evidence?

US Department of Education Fund for the Improvement of Secondary Education (FIPSE)
$700,000 grant, 2010-2013
PI, Carnegie Project on the Education Doctorate, A Proposal to Redesign the Professional Practice Doctorate in Education

Spencer Foundation
$75,000 grant, 2008-2009
Co-PI, Carnegie Project on the Education Doctorate: Creating Rubrics for the Assessment of EdD

Featured Publications

  • Perry, J.A., Zambo, D. & Crow, R. (2020). The Improvement Science Dissertation in Practice: A guide faculty, committee members and their students. Maine: Myers Education Press.

  • Firestone, W.A., Perry, J.A., Leland, A.S. (2020). Teaching research and evidence use through the education doctorate. Planning and Changing. 49(3-4).

  • Perry, J.A. & Abruzzo, E. (2020). Preparing the scholarly practitioner: The importance of socialization in CPED-influenced EdD programs. In Weidman, J.C. & DeAngelo, L. (2020). Socialization in higher education and the early career: Theory, research and application. New York: Springer

  • Perry, J.A., Zambo, D.& Abruzzo, E. (2020). Faculty leader challenges and strategies in redesigning EdD programs. Impacting Education: Journal for Transforming Professional Practice. 5(1) pp.1-6.

  • Perry, J.A. & Zambo, D. (2019). Developing Stewards of the Practice: Understanding the Role of Improvement Science in EdD Programs. In Crow. R., Hinnant-Crawford, B. N., & Spaulding, D.T. (Eds.) (2019). The educational leader’s guide to improvement science: Data, design and cases for reflection. Gorham, ME: Meyers Education Press

Engagement, Partnerships, and Professional Service

  • Executive Director - Carnegie Project on the Education Doctorate (CPED), a consortium of 110+ schools of education working to reimagine the EdD.

  • Board Member - The Global SwitchBoard, an Pittsburgh organization working to steward a network to promote equitable global engagement in the Pittsburgh region.

  • Board Member - Hekima Place, a home for orphaned and vulnerable girls in Kenya, many of whom have been orphaned due to the devastating impact of HIV/AIDS.

  • Board Member - Pittsburgh Area Peace Corps Association

Jill Alexa Perry


University of Pittsburgh
5310 Wesley W. Posvar Hall
230 South Bouquet Street
Pittsburgh, PA 15260

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