Knowledge matters.

The comprehensive exam for Ed.D. degree candidates comprises two written practical application and synthesis examinations.


In writing the analyses for the comprehensive exams, the goal is threefold:

  1. Demonstrate your ability to think critically about important issues germane to your industry, organization or profession as they relate to organizational leadership and development.
  2. Apply your knowledge of the CU doctoral curriculum by using the language of the specific courses you have taken in the Ed.D. program, citing this work properly within the analyses.
  3. Showcase your ability to write clearly and cogently, giving evidence of your readiness for the doctoral dissertation.

Written Analyses

You will be required to complete the two analyses within 10 days. Each analysis is required to be 10-15 pages in length, prepared according to APA Style and supported by a minimum of 10 sources.

  • Part I: Case Study Analysis — For the first written analysis, you will have two case studies to choose from, one business-related and the other related to social science or education.
  • Part II: Analysis of Leadership or Organizational Development Issue — The second written analysis will be based on a question or prompt that asks you to analyze, synthesize and evaluate a major theme or issue in leadership or organizational development through the perspective of your doctoral course work and current profession or career.


Examination submissions will be evaluated by a two-person blind committee with one of three outcomes possible:

  • Pass without Reservation
  • Pass with Reservation
  • Fail

A make-up exam is available for candidates, offering a second chance to pass the comprehensive exam if the first attempt is unsuccessful.