Doctor of Education (Ed.D.) in Educational Leadership (PSAP)

The Professional School Administrator Program (PSAP) provides an opportunity for full-time administrators to obtain their superintendent licensure and a Doctor of Education in educational leadership. The program was developed by Boston College more than three decades ago to provide an opportunity for full-time school administrators to pursue doctoral study.

The Lynch School of Education and Human Development at Boston College partners with the Massachusetts Association of School Superintendents (MASS) and Teachers21 to prepare future superintendents and school leaders for public, Catholic, charter, and independent schools.

Boston College's Ed.D. program is an active member of the Carnegie Project on the Education Doctorate, a national effort by 55 institutions to reform and strengthen the education doctorate.

The program is grounded in the core values of the Lynch School, with coursework focusing on leadership for social justice, school reform, community building, and leadership for learning.

Through a cohort model that emphasizes collaborative learning and support, PSAP aims to create a powerful network of district-level leaders throughout the Commonwealth of Massachusetts and beyond.

This program results in Superintendent Licensure.

More information on the LLPS and the licensure program.

The Boston College Leadership Licensure Program is approved by the Department of Elementary and Secondary Education (DESE) for Superintendent/Assistant Superintendent Licensure.

Financial Assistance

Education should level the playing field – we feel the same way about financial aid.

The Lynch School of Education and Human Development provides more than $7.5 million in financial aid to students each year. As a result, the quality of BC’s instruction, the benefit of our alumni network, and the impact a BC degree will have on your employment options is both affordable and invaluable. Here’s why:

At a Glance

Who is this for?

This program is for full time administrators.  

How many courses?

This program consists of 13 courses for a total of 39 credits. 

How long will it take?

Full time students will complete the program in 3 years.
Two week sessions each summer (for 3 summers) are required. 

When can I start?

Students can begin the program only in the Summer semester.
A new cohort is accepted every other year.

Program Faculty & Expertise

What will I study?


  • Courses: 13
  • Credits: 39
  • Comprehensve Exam
Course Course Title Credit

Human Resource Administration

Addresses fundamental school personnel functions such as hiring, retention, socialization, rewards and sanctions, and performance appraisal. These functions, however, are situated in a broader approach to the human and professional development of school personnel in a learning organization.


Ethics for District Leaders

The course explores how schools are used as a vehicle of the state to de-culturalize various communities of people throughout the country's history. Students will explore how schools can more appropriately promote respect for valuing diversity as a generative source of the country's vitality and its relationship to the global village. 


Education Law for District Leaders

This course addresses the political and legal aspects of the role of education in our democratic society. Provides an introductory survey of public policy issues and laws governing preschool, elementary, secondary, and higher education. 

ELHE8833  Leadership for Social Justice: District Focus  
ELHE 9903  District Level Instructional Leadership  

Seminar on Education Reform

This interdisciplinary seminar addresses the role of law in education reform and the relationship between law and social science in efforts to promote educational attainment in the nation¿s elementary and secondary schools. The primary focus will be contemporary education reform issues, including educator quality, access to meaningful opportunity to learn, curriculum control, and student, teacher, administrator, and parental rights.


Where do our graduates work?

Merrimack College

Resident Director

The Legal Aid Society

Education Attorney

Princeton University

Communications & Outreach Coordinator

Fordham University

Admission Counselor


University of Connecticut

Career Consultant

Kyung Hee University

Policy Analyst

Monsignor Haddad Middle School

Guidance Counselor

Brown University

Study Abroad Advisor

University of Miami

Director of Enrollment Marketing and Operations

Elms College


Career paths chosen by previous graduates of the ELHE Department.

Application Information


Click the boxes below for additional details on each item


All applicants

Application Form

Apply Now

A non-refundable application fee of $75 is required, however, this fee is waived for select applicants. 


In addition to your academic history and relevant work experience, please include:

  • Any teaching or counseling experience (including any licenses already held);
  • Any social justice related experience; 
    Any language skills other than English (especially Spanish language skills) and;
  • Any research experience or publications

Personal Statement

To be uploaded to your online Application Form.

In 1,000-1,500 words, describe your academic and professional goals, any experience relevant to this program, and your future plans, expectations, and aspirations.

Letters of Recommendation

Three letters of recommendation from academic sources are required, but applicants with significant relevant professional experience may submit additional letters of reference from supervisors.


Undergraduate transcripts are required as part of the application process and graduate transcripts are accepted, but not required. Please note the following:

  • Only official transcripts, bearing the official seal of the institution and the signature of the relevant administrator, are acceptable.
  • Copies and unofficial transcripts are not acceptable.
  • If you are a current student and have not completed your undergraduate degree at the time your transcript is sent, the most updated version of your transcript is acceptable.


Transcripts must be mailed to the following address:

Boston College, Lynch School of Education
Office of Graduate Admission, Financial Aid, and Student Services
Campion Hall 135
140 Commonwealth Avenue
Chestnut Hill, MA 02467

Standardized Tests

This program does not require the GRE or any other standardized test.

Writing Sample

To be uploaded to your online Application Form

All applicants to this program are required to submit one piece of work that demonstrates graduate-level writing ability. This document may be an academic term paper, a published work in which you are the primary author, a training manual or curriculum that you have created, a clinical case formulation, or another representative sample of your writing. The document should be approximately 15-20 pages.

International Students

International applicants are encouraged to apply to the Lynch School of Education. Learn about requirements for international students.