Award Type and NFQ level : PROFESSIONAL DOCTORATE (10)

CAO/PAC code : MH06G

CAO Points :

Closing Date : n/a

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The Doctor of Education with Specialism is a part-time programme offered by the Department of Education in Maynooth University. It is designed for those who wish to undertake doctoral studies specifically related to their work in the field of education, namely in the areas of teacher education and of educational leadership. It gives students the opportunity to participate in seminars in their chosen area of specialism during the first two years of the programme that will assist them in refining their research proposal for their dissertation. The specialism and dissertation topic will strongly correlate with their work as practitioners in the field of education.

Applicants should hold a H2.1 (or higher) Masters Degree in Education or in a cognate discipline. A high level of ability in academic writing will be required, as evidenced by the submission of a sample of recent writing (e.g. chapter of Masters thesis, report, article or 3,000 word essay) as part of the application process.
Applicants who meet the criteria will be invited to attend for interview.
Minimum English language requirements:
Minimum English language requirements: please visit Maynooth University International Office website for information about English language tests accepted and required scores. The requirements specified are applicable for both EU and non-EU applicants.
National University of Ireland Maynooth’s TOEFL code is 8850

Year 1:
In year 1 of the programme, the student will take 3 modules with a total value of 35 credits.
The first two modules are designed to develop the students’ capacity to engage critically with educational theories, particularly in areas such as policy, knowledge development and epistemology, and the design and execution of educational research, with emphasis on research methods appropriate to practitioner research. These modules will also facilitate the development of the cohort’s identity as a class group. The third module focuses explicitly on the specialism strand chosen by the student, allowing the student to further develop his/her knowledge of the literature of the dissertation topic.
Semester 1: Knowledge and Policy in Educational Practice   6 x 6 hours graduate seminars
Semester 2: Educational Research: Philosophy and Practice  6 x 4 hours graduate seminars
Summer School: Specialism Module                                       4 x 6 hours graduate seminars
Year 2:
Year 2 of the programme builds on the work of the first year. Students begin with a strand specific module that builds on the summer school. In semester 2, students attend a series of research support seminars, designed to assist them with the development of their dissertation proposal. There is an option to undertake an advanced research methodology module if required. By the end of year 2, the student will have developed the research dimension of the dissertation, including application for ethical approval, and will be ready to begin the dissertation in year 3.
Semester 1: Specialism Module                                               6 x 4 hours graduate seminars
Semester 2: Educational Research Support Seminars              6 x 4 hours graduate seminars
Years 3 and 4:
Years 3 and 4 are spent on the execution and completion of the 50,000 word dissertation. During those two years, a team of supervisors will provide support to the student as s/he works on the dissertation. The student may also undertake a designed to develop their academic and professional skills. The student may select a 5 credit modules from a list provided by the department, including a conference presentation (ED855), publication of an article (ED856), attendance at a 3U summer/autumn school, or another 5 credit module approved by the Department of Education.

Course Duration: 4 Years Part Time

For further information on Postgraduate options please go to the Graduate Studies site

Online application only
PAC Code: MH06G
Students should select the stream they intend to take when applying via PAC, please select either Educational Leadership or Teacher Education.
Please direct all enquiries to 
The following documents should be forwarded to PAC, 1 Courthouse Square, Galway or uploaded to your online application form:

  • Uploaded Documentation: Certified copies of all official transcripts of results for all non-Maynooth University qualifications listed MUST accompany the application. Failure to do so will delay your application being processed. Applicants must have a recognised primary degree which is considered equivalent to Irish university primary degree level.
  • Uploaded Documentation: A sample of recent writing that demonstrates your capacity to write in an academic manner, including an ability to organise, analyse and present arguments fluently and lucidly with a high level of critical analysis and with appropriate academic referencing e.g. chapter of Masters thesis, report, article, 3,000 word essay on an educational issue.
  • Supplementary Question on PAC: A short proposal (one-page / 500 words) outlining your proposed research topic. We recognise that your thinking will be tentative at this stage.
  • The names and contact details of two referees.
  • Non-Maynooth University students are asked to provide a copy of birth certificate or valid passport.

Applicants who meet the criteria will be required to attend for interview as part of the admissions process. 

 "Please note applications for the Ed.D programme will be accepted bi-annually. Your next opportunity to apply will be for 2019/20"


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