Date of Award

Spring 4-24-2017

Document Type


Degree Name

Doctorate of Education, Ed.D.


College of Education



First Advisor

Jerry McGuire, Ph.D.

Second Advisor

Dana Sims Barbarick, Ph.D.

Third Advisor

Joe Mannion, Ed.D.


This study seeks to understand my doctoral journey. Meaning for my journey was drawn from the intersection of shared program experiences with 13 other study participants who had either already earned or were in the midst of retaining doctoral degrees of their own. Common thoughts, feelings, and behaviors associated with earning the doctoral degree were discovered during open-ended professional conversations centered on the framework of my research study: self-efficacy, motivation, perseverance or grit, and change or transformation. The shared description of my journey helped me understand my experience in a different more meaningful way. Through my narrative, I hope a better understanding of what it takes to pursue the goal of earning a doctoral degree comes through.