Ed.D. with a Gifted Education Specialization

The Gifted Education Specialization fuses gifted education training with curriculum and instruction leadership in a hybrid online and face-to-face model. You will take two online courses each quarter — fall, winter and spring — and meet face-to-face with your cohort for on-campus courses in the summer. Each June you will meet for two weeks to receive support with relationship-building within the cohort, advising and assistance with research project conceptualization. The program will develop your research skills, particularly in identification, intervention, methodology and analysis. Students generally complete this program within three years.

Upcoming Conferences & Summits


Upon graduation from the program and passing of the Gifted Education praxis, you may apply for multiple endorsements with the Colorado Department of Education, including:

  • Gifted Education CORE endorsement
  • Gifted Education Specialist endorsement
  • Gifted Education director license
  • Principal license, as applicable

The University of Denver has not yet determined whether the program meets endorsement requirements in states other than Colorado or in any U.S. protectorates. Students seeking endorsement in a state other than Colorado should contact the state’s Board of Education to determine whether the program meets endorsement requirements.

Course Offerings

Some of the courses you can take include:

  • Psychological Aspects of Giftedness
  • Instructional Strategies for the Gifted
  • Twice Exceptional Learners
  • Program Development, Leadership & Communication in Gifted Education
  • Legal Issues in Special & Gifted Education
  • Introduction to Qualitative Research
  • Research as Intervention
  • Applied Research

Gifted Director Option

In this option, you will spend one additional year in the Ed.D. program and focus on leadership. In a “2-1-1” format, you will complete coursework in Gifted Education and Curriculum & Instruction in your first two years, followed by study in Educational Leadership and your dissertation-in-practice. The administrator licensure coursework can also be completed after the Ed.D. coursework.

Upon graduation, you may apply for multiple endorsements with the Colorado Department of Education to support your career in Gifted Education Leadership.


Members of each cohort receive an attractive funding package, with scholarships typically running no less than 40% of the total cost of tuition. For more information, visit our Financial Aid page.

In addition, financial support is available for research projects completed within the program.