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College of Human Development, Culture, and Media
Higher Education Leadership Program
Doctor of Philosophy (Ph.D.)

Higher Education Leadership, Management and Policy

The Ph.D. in Higher Education Leadership, Management and Policy is designed to provide students with a broad understanding of the interrelated societal and organizational dimensions of higher education, in preparation for senior administrative, policy development and management posts in colleges and universities, as well as government agencies and foundations, or for careers in teaching and research. The program offers the opportunity to focus in areas, such as administration and education policy, international and comparative higher education, organizational culture and change, and the academic profession.

General Higher Education Program Approach

Courses generally meet once a week in the evening. Study is available on a full- or part-time basis for either focus.

The small size of the Ph.D. program at Seton Hall University allows for frequent faculty interaction and close work with your adviser. We are committed to maintaining a small, selective and focused program that will prepare our graduates to pursue a range of possible careers.

The Ph.D. in Higher Education Leadership, Management and Policy also offers a concentration in Education Research, Assessment, and Program Evaluation.

What Can I Do with a Ph.D. in Higher Education Leadership?

With a Ph.D. in Higher Education Leadership, graduates are prepared for advanced roles in higher education administration and leadership. They can lead change and innovation within colleges and universities, shape policy in higher education program development, and contribute to the improvement of educational systems. This degree equips higher education professionals with deep insights into higher education leadership, allowing them to tackle complex challenges in higher education administration. Their expertise paves the way for careers as university administrators, policy makers, and leaders in educational organizations.

Doctoral Program, Higher Ed Leadership

Seton Hall University's highly regarded doctoral program in Higher Education Leadership helps professionals advance their careers leading colleges and universities.

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“Each of our core courses built the solid quantitative and qualitative research constructs that I use every day while analyzing and visualizing data on students, faculty, and staff at Princeton and peer institutions.

Having the ability to immerse myself in many different areas (governance, history, policy, research, evaluation, finances), made me a more well-rounded student and more prepared to fully explore my own potential.”

Jonathan Stoessel, Ph.D. ‘16, Institutional Research Analyst

Admissions Requirements

  • Online Application
  • Official transcripts from all institutions attended
  • Statement of professional and personal goals with an indication of specialization to be pursued 
  • Resume of professional background
  • Two (2) letters of recommendation regarding candidate's potential for doctoral study

Application Deadlines

Applicants are encouraged to apply by the recommended deadlines*

  • March 15 for Fall admission 
  • October 15 for Spring admission 

*Additional applications may be accepted beyond the recommended deadlines on a space available basis only.

Admissions Criteria and Prerequisites

  • An M.A. in an appropriate field with a minimum GPA of 3.0 


The faculty in the College of Human Development, Culture, and Media are expert researchers and practitioners in teacher and leader preparation as well as professional psychology and family therapy. Many are actively engaged with schools and community agencies, modeling best practices to their students in the university classroom and in the field. Collaboration within departments and across is encouraged with the recognition that supporting and improving the lives of children, families and communities is a complex process. View all Human Development, Culture, and Media Faculty »

Rong Chen posing
Rong Chen
Associate Professor
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David B Reid
Associate Professor, K-12 Program Director
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Jennifer Timmer
Assistant Professor
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The College of Human Development, Culture, and Media embodies the University’s commitment to pedagogical innovation, intellectual ferment and community engagement. Uniting scholars and students from four dynamic academic departments, the College provides cutting-edge, transdisciplinary inquiry into the stickiest problems of our time.

Our collaborative ethos is the hallmark of a Seton Hall education: an interdisciplinary approach to learning that grounds students firmly in their chosen discipline while expanding their perspectives through collaboration — setting them apart in their ability to lead in a variety of fields and solve pressing problems in society.

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