United States Campus PhD Programs in Technology

PhD in Technology Schools award terminal degrees in majors as diverse as library science, business information systems, cybersecurity and computer engineering. Technology PhD students often spend significant effort in research to develop strong skills in analysis, scholarship and communication. Students who choose on-campus Technology PhD programs may enjoy a supportive academic environment, face-to-face classes and the chance to take part in collaborative research projects.

PhD in Technology Schools: Overview

PhD in Technology Schools may award specific types of degrees, each with their own features and related areas of emphasis. Technology is a vast discipline that spans techniques, skills, methods, and processes which could produce goods and services. Beyond that, technology is a means to various ends. The scientific knowledge gained by those who study it could be channeled into innovation and used to accomplish many functions.

Doctorate Degrees in Technology

The three principal doctorate degrees that explore technology are the (1) Doctor of Philosophy (PhD), (2) Doctor of Computer Science (DCS), and (3) Doctor of Business Administration (DBA). Each type of doctoral degree comes with its own set of courses, requirements and majors.

  • A Doctor of Philosophy (PhD) is a research degree. Candidates might explore their major with a critical eye, through courses and research methodology. Their goal is to come up with new scholarly input to address dilemmas in their field.
  • A Doctor of Computer Science (DCS) is a professional practice doctorate. It is the highest award in the study of the principles and uses of computers. DCS candidates might look to understand technological trends, innovate and problem solve through technical means such as hardware and software.
  • A Doctor of Business Administration (DBA) is an applied research, professional doctorate. DBA degrees are designed to help executives view technology through the lens of management decisions, business strategy, operational outcomes and organizational change.

Some universities with PhD programs in technology may have multiple campus locations. Also, there are different areas of emphasis available from school to school for each of the above doctorate degrees.

DID YOU KNOW?
Employment of computer and information technology occupations is projected to grow 13 percent from 2016 to 2026.i

Admissions Information

Applicants to PhD in Technology schools may need relevant prior coursework and experience in the discipline they choose to study. Additionally, a graduate school may require that the applicant’s goals and interests match with the program’s intent and the active faculty research. That said, the two entry-points to Technology PhD programs are the (1) Bachelors degree and the (2) Masters degree. It is up to each university to set their admission requirements, therefore one should refer to any individual program and school.

Doctorate in Business Information Systems

Several universities may award a DBA in Information Systems Management. Information systems management studies an organization’s technology needs to recommend upgrades, keep electronic data secure, and determine IT goals.

Students enrolled in a DBA programs need to satisfy about 60 credit hours, distributed between applied research methods, academic writing, core courses, information systems courses, electives and doctoral research.

Research requirements usually include courses in methods of analysis, as well as quantitative and qualitative research. Students also might choose to further explore advanced statistical methods or an applied research course, depending on their end research goals. In terms of core courses, DBA programs often fully explore business and administrative topics such as:

  • Organizational management
  • Marketing strategy
  • Corporate and Global finance
  • Strategy
  • Operations management

These core areas could help broaden students’ grasp of their major in information systems, and may help them to innovate and apply theories to solve industry-relevant problems. After they complete their courses, students may need to successfully pass an exam before they enroll in doctoral research courses.

Doctor of Computer Science Programs

Schools that offer a Doctor of Computer Science degree may enable students to more fully understand the technical sides of technology. Candidates are shown the basics of how to conduct research that could advance the field of computer science, as well as help them to effectively communicate technical material to non-technical decision-makers.

Students who pursue a DCS degree are required to complete about 96 credits, which target core courses in innovation and prediction and current trends in information systems. Along with these courses, students study basic principles of qualitative and quantitative research methods and design.

Then, once they have completed the technical courses, students take dissertation courses to help them work towards a research proposal and final action research dissertation. To anchor this research, students may pursue a DCS degree in a specific area.

DCS in Emerging Media (EM): Emerging media uses a multidisciplinary approach to examine how social networks, new media, web science and virtual worlds impact business, education, research and entertainment. Along with required courses, students who pursue a DCS-EM degree might study in-depth the following topics.

  • Business strategies for social media
  • Virtual economy and business
  • Web privacy
  • Virtual and cloud-computing architectures
  • Games and gamification

DCS in Enterprise Information Systems: A focus in enterprise information systems (EIS) is used to develop technical expertise for managing the IT implementation process, tester and user testing. Coursework may cover models such as CMMI and the Baldridge process. Other courses could cover the following subjects.

  • Business intelligence
  • Enterprise tools
  • Strategy, alignment and portfolio management
  • Integration of EIS

DCS in Information Assurance: A focus in cybersecurity and information assurance may help persons to develop the theoretical, research and applications skills needed to manage and forecast future issues and developments in this field. Students may be further challenged to demonstrate expertise in a sub-discipline of Information Assurance. Aside from core computer science courses, this emphasis may provide courses in the following topics.

  • Enterprise security architecture
  • Enterprise tools, concepts, processes
  • Security management
  • Digital systems security

PhD Programs in Library and Information Science

Schools with PhD programs in Library and Information Science (LIS) cover how you might analyze the information needs of users. Courses examine the diverse tools and technologies used to locate, assess, organize, manage and preserve information and materials as an accessible source of knowledge. PhD students may work closely with faculty and classmates through analytical papers, experience reports, essays, and teaching experiences.

A PhD in Library Science could require students to complete between 36 and 56 credits. While course names vary, some possible topics are as follows.

  • Information design technology
  • Information systems
  • Administrative theory
  • Information psychology

Coursework could also include classes in applied statistics for LIS, research methods, and a course in teaching and learning. Students are typically expected to conduct extensive research that contributes to the theory basis of library and information science and links with modern professional problems.

PhD Programs in Computing and Information Sciences

Some PhD in Technology Schools offer a PhD program in Computing and Information Sciences. This type of program has a scholarly focus on the theoretical and practical aspects of cyber infrastructure as applied to distinct problems. Classes address interdisciplinary research skills as they study the integration of hardware, software and communication. A course about interactions analyzes how technology facilitates the interplay between humans and computers. Other topics might cover informatics, where students explore the techniques applied to make sense of data-driven systems.

Take the Next Step

Do you want to find PhD in Technology Schools with programs in a specific subject or a preferred location? These filters that are in tune with your personal and professional goals could help set you up for success. Use them to compare PhD programs, then easily apply to the sponsored schools on your list with the on-page form.


[i] bls.gov/ooh/computer-and-information-technology/home.htm

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