Part-Time PhD Programs in Education

Learn about your options for earning a doctorate in education on a part-time basis. Find out about the requirements for these programs along with typically required classes. Schools offering Education degrees can also be found in these popular choices.

Are Part-Time Ph.D. Programs in Education Available?

There are a number of Ph.D. programs in education that you may complete on a part-time basis. Doctoral degrees are available in different areas, such as education leadership and higher education administration, or in specializations, such as mathematics education or science education. Some Ph.D. programs that are designed to be full-time may also consider part-time students on a case-by-case basis. Unlike Doctor of Education (Ed.D.) programs, which also are available on a part-time basis, Ph.D. programs prepare students for careers as faculty members or in research.

Degree OptionsPart-time doctoral degrees available in areas such as education leadership, higher education administration, mathematics or science education
Common CoursesCurriculum development, education research methods, quantitative methods, statistical analysis
Online AvailabilityRarely available fully on-line; residency requirements may be on-campus
Median Annual Salary (2016)$89,005 for postsecondary professors*

Source: *

How Do Part-Time Programs Work?

If you're completing your doctoral degree on a part-time basis, the length of time it takes to finish can depend on whether or not you're transferring credits from a master's degree program. Students are generally allowed five years to complete Ph.D. coursework and exams, followed by an additional five years to complete a dissertation. Specific timeframes may vary by school. While coursework also varies by school and specialization, some of the courses you can expect to find in a Ph.D. program in education include:

  • Organizational development
  • Education research methods
  • Curriculum development
  • Quantitative methods
  • Statistical analysis

Are Part-Time Programs Available Online?

Although rare, part-time Ph.D. programs in education are available online. However, some do have campus residency requirements. As an online student, you will still have access to other students, in addition to instructors and other faculty members who you will work with to complete your dissertation. In addition to having reliable access to a computer with Internet access, online students are typically required to meet technical requirements, such as specific operating system or browser requirements, and may also need specific software, such as Microsoft Office, in order to complete coursework.

What Can I Do With My Degree?

With a doctoral degree in education, you may pursue a career teaching college students or students in lower grade levels, in addition to having the option of pursuing a career in education administration or research. As college enrollments continue to rise, employment of postsecondary teachers is expected to grow 13% between 2014 and 2024 - faster than the average, according to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics ( As of January 2016, the median annual salary for postsecondary professors was $89,005, according to

To continue researching, browse degree options below for course curriculum, prerequisites and financial aid information. Or, learn more about the subject by reading the related articles below:

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