Factors Leading Educators to Pursue a Doctorate Degree to Meet Professional Development Needs

Erika Burton
International Journal of Doctoral Studies  •  Volume 15  •  2020  •  pp. 075-087

This study investigates the professional development needs of educators with a Master’s degree and seeking or having a doctoral degree in education.

Understanding the professional development needs of educators is important for meeting these needs. The literature focuses on post-bachelor education but does not address professional development and doctoral degree needs.

Educators with a Master’s degree in education seeking or having completed a doctoral degree participated in one 30 minute semi-structured interview.

This research can be used as a guide for how to support Master’s-level educators seeking doctoral degrees.

Master’s level students earning a doctorate degree in education found professional development satisfied through their programs when experiential learning opportunities were provided and in-depth institutional support.

Educators seeking a doctorate degree in education to meet their professional development needs should seek out higher education opportunities that include mentorships and experiential learning opportunities.

Further research is necessary to understand how additional professional development needs can be met in higher education and in the creation of successful professional development partnerships.

Required teacher professional development can increase classroom performance if necessary educator needs are met.

Additional research on professional development successes in schools partnering with higher education institutions potentially for a dual purpose of obtaining doctorate degrees may provide an invaluable increase in classroom performance.

professional development, doctorate success, doctorate barriers, doctorate pro-gram, education doctorate, doctorate
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