What Are the Most Popular Distance Learning PhD Programs?

Students who would like to pursue advanced degrees but cannot commit to on-campus study may be interested in distance learning Ph.D. programs. Read on to find out more about some of the more popular distance learning Ph.D. programs.

Internet-based Doctoral Programs

Ph.D. degree programs are post-graduate programs that offer students the chance to pursue advanced degrees in specific fields. Although Ph.D. programs require students to complete several hours of coursework, most programs place emphasis on research. Students must complete and defend an original dissertation on a topic of their choosing.

Because working professionals may not be able to commit to on-campus study, distance learning Ph.D. programs have become an attractive alternative. These programs allow students to complete most or all of their degree program from home. Some popular distance learning Ph.D. programs are discussed below.

Important Facts About Distance Learning Doctoral Programs

Prerequisites Bachelor's degree; some programs may require a master's degree
Programs of Study Options vary widely but can include finance, accounting, public health, social work, public administration and information technology
Additional Requirements Aside from coursework, students often need to take comprehensive exams; selection of a dissertation committee and a faculty mentor are also required
Possible Careers Varies widely by program, but some options include professor, nursing manager, school administrator, researcher and many more

University of Nebraska - Ph.D. in Educational Studies

The University of Nebraska at Lincoln offers a degree program leading to a Ph.D. in Educational Studies that can be completed entirely online. The program is designed for students who already work in education. Students study a variety of related topics, including leadership, educational policy, and student affairs. They may also choose to specialize in areas such as human resource development and community college administration. Students interact extensively with classmates and professors through e-mail, online chats, and discussion boards.

University of Utah - Ph.D. in Nursing

The College of Nursing at the University of Utah offers a distance learning Ph.D. degree program. In consultation with an advisor, each candidate selects an area of specialization, such as genetics or health communications. Students must complete at least nine hours of coursework in their specialization areas. The program covers nursing-related subjects that include epidemiology, nursing informatics, and health policy. Some courses in the program are delivered synchronously, meaning that students must be at their computer at a specific time in order to participate in a scheduled class. On-campus orientations may also be required.

Texas Tech University - Ph.D. in Technical Communication and Rhetoric

The Ph.D. in Technical Communication and Rhetoric is a unique degree program offered at Texas Tech University. In addition to online synchronous classes that meet weekly, students have the chance to communicate using video/audio chat and discussion spaces. Candidates are also required to attend two-week onsite summer seminars. A variety of topics are covered in the program, including rhetorical theory and publications management.

Popular Schools