Educational Policy Studies & Practice


Center for the Study of Higher Education
Educational Leadership Program

The Department of Educational Policy Studies and Practice (EPSP) includes the Educational Leadership Program and the Center for the Study of Higher Education. The EPSP department combines the K-12 focus with postsecondary education to create a P-20 perspective that taps into the dominant discourse of education and policymakers today.
Professor Gary Rhoades is the Department Head.

Both the Center for the Study of Higher Education (HED) and the Educational Leadership (EDL) program maintain their core functions and curriculum, consistent with professional career paths and state standards for certification leading to licensure. However, the combined unit more broadly facilitates and encourages research, instructional, and service and outreach initiatives consistent with a policy development and analysis focus.

A  key departmental strength concentrates on how organizations, institutions (both formal and informal), official practices, and educational professions affect outcomes across local, national, and international contexts and how these entities are themselves affected by societal, economic, and political pressures.

EPSP prepares graduate students at the doctorate and master's levels. Graduate programs in HED include Ph.D. and M.A. degrees. Graduate programs in EDL include an Ed.D., Ph.D., Ed.S., and M.Ed. The M.Ed. degree is a standards-driven curriculum leading to both a degree and state certification for the principalship.

Degrees & Programs


Alumni Spotlight

Former HED student, Heather Metcalf was interviewed on BBC’s “The World” regarding the comments of Nobel Laureate Tim Hunt that revealed his bias against women working in the scientific labs. This is another great example of UA Higher Ed PhDs engaging in important conversations and addressing issues of social justice—both locally and globally.


Debbie Bergman was inducted into the Sunnyside School Districts Hall of Fame. As part of her induction, they put together this video about Debbie’s history of outstanding work that I thought you all would like to see:


Recent Graduate Spotlight

HED graduate, Dr. Amanda Tachine published an insightful editorial piece in Al Jazeera America. Her article discusses the rare yet crucial experiences of graduate and professional Native American students and how best to support their success. 


Important Documents, Forms, and Resources for:

Faculty & Staff

Teaching Resources