Doctorate and PhD Degree Programs in Philadelphia
What is a Doctorate Degree?
A Doctorate, or Doctoral Degree, is the highest level of academic degree awarded by a university. A doctorate typically signifies that the individual is qualified to teach at the post-secondary level or work in a specific field of profession. There are two major types of doctoral degrees; the research-oriented degree, and the professional doctorate degree.
Doctorate Degrees are sometimes referred to as terminal degrees which means it is the final degree available in graduate school for students wishing to study in the chosen subject. In most fields, the terminal-level degree is the doctor of philosophy, or PhD, but in some fields, it's a professional degree, such as a doctor of medicine or law degree.
We commonly associate a doctorate degree with the field of medicine and the abbreviation ‘M.D’, or medical doctorate, and the Ph.D., or Doctor of Philosophy Degree. In fact, there are different types of doctoral degrees, including the DBA degree, and several reasons why earning one might be just what the doctor ordered.
Is a PhD and a Doctorate the Same?
Doctoral degrees encompass both PhD degrees and other 'Doctor of' degrees. While these may be equivalent academically, there are differences to learn between PhD degrees and other degrees such as the Doctor of Business Administration (DBA) or Juris Doctor (JD). Essentially, the differences appear in terms of the type of research and the focus for each degree - whether it is research-focused (PhD) or professional practice-focused (e.g. DBA degree, JD degree, PsyD degree).
What Is a PhD?
Doctor of Philosophy, or PhD degrees, are research-based academic degrees which are awarded in many fields. A PhD degree is granted to students who have conducted publishable, original research in a peer-reviewed academic publication. Additionally, to get to that research, doctoral candidates have to complete a substantial amount of coursework beyond the master’s degree level. Many holders of this degree might pursue academic careers as college professors, scholarly writers and researchers. While the most common research degree is the Doctor of Philosophy (PhD) degree, other research doctorates are available.
Some popular PhD Majors include:
- Doctor of Education (Ed.D.)
- Doctor of Arts (D.A.)
- Doctor of Musical Arts (D.M.A.)
- Doctor of Professional Studies (DProf)
- Doctor of Social Science (DSocSci)
- Doctor of Management (DMan)
- Doctor of Engineering (D Eng)
- Doctor of Theology (ThD)
What Is A Professional Doctorate Degree?
A professional doctorate degree is awarded in fields where both research and study are required, but the type of research is ‘applied’. This means it is designed to be used for professional purposes, such as to solve a real-world problem in their domain. These can be seen in psychology, medicine, engineering, education, law and business. Unlike the PhD, some professional doctorates while considered terminal degrees within their specific profession, may serve as a prerequisite or platform to a research degree in that field.
Examples of professional doctorates might include:
- Doctor of Pharmacy (Pharm.D.)
- Doctor of Medicine (M.D.)
- Doctor of Ministry (D.Min.)
- Doctor of Psychology (Psy.D.)
- Doctor of Veterinary Medicine (D.V.M.)
- Doctor of Nursing Practice (D.N.P.)
- Doctor of Dental Medicine (D.M.D.)
- Doctor of Dental Surgery (D.D.S.)
- Doctor of Optometry (O.D.)
- Doctor of Physical Therapy (D.P.T.)
- Doctor of Chiropractic (D.C.)
- Doctor of Jurisprudence (J.D.)
- Doctor of Osteopathic
- Doctor of Business Administration (DBA)
- Doctor of Public Administration (DPA)
- Doctor of Social Work (DSW)
Note that the Ed.D., D.Min., D.B.A. and M.D. are both research and professional doctorate degrees. Original research for a dissertation may have a combination of both theory and practical components.
PhD programs are available within various fields of study. In each of these disciplines, there may be doctorate programs in several specialties and concentration areas. This may allow you to tailor your program to your interests and career goals.
Popular PhD and Doctorate Programs in Philadelphia
|Doctor of Philosophy in Environmental Engineering||Temple University||PhD|
DID YOU KNOW?
About 3 percent of all jobs in the United States were in occupations that typically require a doctoral degree (Ph.D.) or first professional degree, such as in law or medicine. In May 2013, the median annual wage for those jobs was $97,550 according to The Bureau of Labor Statistics.
What is Higher Than a PhD?
A higher level of research doctorates, called Higher Doctorates, are sometimes awarded to those whose research is of a very high standard. These higher doctorates are also bestowed if a university wishes to formally acknowledge an individual for their achievements or contributions in the field. A Higher Doctorate typically signals that you have authoritative standing in your field.
Preparing for a Doctoral Degree in Your Field
Earning a doctoral degree may require a major investment of time and energy, but at the same time, climbing that mountain may give you excellent results and recognition. Just remember to do some homework as early as college. Choosing a bachelor’s degree from an accredited university, taking coursework during the preliminary degree(s), and making sure you are up to the commitment are some of the building blocks to earning your PhD degree or doctorate degree in any field.
How to Earn a Doctorate Degree near Philadelphia
While each doctorate degree has its own requirements, doctorate degree curriculum typically involves coursework plus research. In the event you are in a four-year doctoral degree program, you may need to complete the following steps.
- Complete 60 to 120 semester credits (varies between graduate schools)
- Pass final examinations
- Write and defend a research thesis or dissertation
Other doctoral programs may involve a capstone project and supervised placement in your field. Format may vary depending on the type of doctoral degree you are pursuing. However, usually the courses are taken first. Rigorous examinations follow subsequent to test a candidate's knowledge. A dissertation topic is proposed and the latter part of one's doctorate program may be spent in research - collecting, recording, analyzing data, testing a hypothesis or whatever is pertinent to the field of study. Programs may vary, so follow up directly about individual programs to learn more.
DID YOU KNOW?
To receive a doctoral degree, students must often complete a dissertation, a lengthy research project that contributes new knowledge to the field. Occupations that require a doctoral degree include animal scientists, computer and information research scientists, and physicists.
How Many Years is a Doctoral Degree?
Typically, a doctorate degree program can take about 4 to 6 years to complete after the bachelor’s degree. If you hold a master’s degree, you may be able to complete your doctorate in about 3 years of full-time study - or you may be able to find a dual masters and phd program. However, this is going to depend on the institution and the type of program. In some universities, it may be possible to find part-time doctoral degree programs, a factor that might extend time to completion.
What Are the Prerequisites for a Doctorate?
Doctoral applicants were previously required to have a master's degree, but many programs accept students immediately following undergraduate studies. Many programs gauge the potential of a student applying to their program and grant a master's degree upon completion of the necessary Ph.D. course work.
Is a Doctorate Degree 'Right' for You?
Doctoral degrees are not required in every field, which doesn't mean you shouldn't go for it. However, if you are thinking ahead to plan your scholastic path, or pave the way to a potential career, it is important to find out whether a doctoral or professional degree is required for professional practice. Is a PhD degree ultimately best for you? According to The Bureau of Labor Statistics data, the answer may be ‘yes’ if any of the below statements are true.
- Your goal is advanced computer and information research.
- You are interested in a medical field (dentist, doctor, chiropractor).
- You want to do independent research in medical science, physics, biochemistry, biophysics.
- You want to work as a librarian in an academic library.
- Your ambition is to work as a licensed clinical psychologist.
Are Online PhD Programs Available?
Yes, some schools do offer online PhD programs. These may allow you to pursue your education without compromising your schedule. Generally, online programs will make course readings, syllabi, assignments and lectures available through an online platform. Online doctoral programs may also use chatrooms, discussion boards and email to encourage communication with professors and classmates. Fully online PhD programs are not always available. However, if this is the case, you might find hybrid doctoral programs which combine web-based courses with intensives on campus. Contact schools to learn more. You can even find online PhD programs that don't require you to take a GRE!
Accreditation and Doctoral Degrees near Philadelphia
Accreditation in the United States focuses on institutions and programs. Institutional accreditation takes into account the integrity of the graduate school (faculty, mission, achievement). Specialized program accreditation takes into account courses and educational standards. Accreditation may help you evaluate the quality of a PhD program or school. It may also be an important factor if you are interested in federal aid.
An institution can be accredited nationally by the United States Department of Education or the Council for Higher Education Accreditation. These national agencies recognize 6 regional organizations in turn.
Standards for PhD program accreditation differ, and you are wise to see what they are in your field. For instance, the American Psychological Association (APA) accredits doctoral programs in psychology (PhD and PsyD), but look to the American Association of Colleges of Nursing for Doctor of Nursing Practice (DNP) programs. Visit the US Department of Education or individual accrediting bodies websites to learn more.
Top 509 Graduate Schools with Doctorate Programs in Philadelphia
- Accredited online university.
- Capella University offers doctoral programs designed to take you to the forefront of your profession.
- Competency-based curriculum delivers both foundation knowledge and real-world skills, so that what you’re learning in your courses is immediately applicable to your career goals.
Temple UniversityDoctor of Philosophy in Civil Engineering Doctor of Philosophy in Electrical Engineering Doctor of Philosophy in Environmental Engineering Doctor of Philosophy in Mechanical Engineering Doctor of Philosophy in Bioengineering
Northcentral UniversityDoctor of Philosophy in Business Administration - Human Resources Management Doctor of Philosophy in Technology and Innovation Management - Data Science Doctor of Philosophy in Marriage & Family Therapy - Medical Family Therapy Doctor of Philosophy in Business Administration - Public Administration Doctor of Nursing Practice in Executive Leadership Doctor of Philosophy in Technology and Innovation Management - Computer Science Doctor of Philosophy in Education - General Education Doctor of Philosophy in Computer Science Doctor of Philosophy in Education - Curriculum and Teaching Doctor of Philosophy in Psychology - Addictions Doctor of Philosophy in Business Administration - Advanced Accounting Doctorate of Marriage & Family Therapy - General Family Therapy Doctor of Philosophy in Business Administration - Homeland Security - Leadership & Policy Doctor of Philosophy in Education - Learning Analytics in Higher Education Education Specialist - Leadership in Higher Education Education Specialist - English Language Learning Doctor of Business Administration - Marketing Doctor of Philosophy in Business Administration - Management of Engineering and Technology Doctor of Education - English Language Learning Doctor of Philosophy in Education - Instructional Leadership Doctor of Philosophy in Marriage & Family Therapy - General Family Therapy Doctor of Philosophy in Psychology - General Psychology Education Specialist - General Education Doctor of Business Administration - Management Information Systems Doctor of Philosophy in Marriage & Family Therapy - Therapy with Military Families
Biblical Theological SeminaryReligious Studies Leadership MA in Counseling
La Salle UniversityDoctor of Nursing Practice Clinical Psychology (Psy.D.) Doctor of Theology (Th.D.)
Medical College of LondonMedical Doctor
Immaculata UniversityEducational Leadership and Administration Doctoral of Education (Ed.D.) in Higher Education Clinical Psychology
University of Medicine and Dentistry of New JerseyPublic Health D.O. - Doctor of Osteopathic Medicine
Chestnut Hill CollegeHolistic Spirituality Psy.D. Program in Clinical Psychology
Westminster Theological SeminaryReligion Theology
University of the SciencesPharmacognosy Biochemistry Entry-Level Pharmacy Cell Biology and Biotechnology Pharmacology-Toxicology Pharmaceutics Chemistry Health Policy
Saint Joseph's UniversityEducational Leadership Education
Widener UniversityGraduate Nursing Criminal Justice Clinical Psychology Adult Education Human Sexuality Education MSW Program Physical Therapy Reading Education School Administration Higher Education Leadership
Salus UniversityOptometry Audiology
Alvernia UniversityDoctor of Philosophy in Leadership
Gratz CollegeJewish Education
Rutgers, The State University of New JerseyDoctor of Physical Therapy
University of PennsylvaniaCombined Degree and Physician Scholars Programs Education, Culture, and Society Educational Linguistics Systems Engineering Quantitative Methods Social Work - Doctorate Ph.D. Program in Health Care Systems Education Policy - Doctorate Genomics and Computational Biology Executive Doctorate in Higher Education Management Doctor of Dentistry (DDS) Computer and Information Science - Doctorate Demography - Doctorate Interdisciplinary Studies in Human Development - Doctorate Accounting - Doctorate Mid-Career Doctorate in Educational Leadership Real Estate Veterinary Medicine Pharmacological Sciences Political Science - Doctorate African Studies Program Philosophy Ph.D. Program in Management Cell and Molecular Biology Ph.D. Program in Finance
Princeton UniversityPopulation Studies Interdisciplinary Environmental Engineering and Water Resources Ph.D. - Near Eastern Studies Ph.D. - Oceanography/Atmospheric Science History of Science Mechanical Engineering Classics Religion Statistics and Operations Research Sociology Mathematics Music History German Studies Program in History of Science Computer Science English Language and Literature Mechanics, Materials, and Structures Astronomy Operations Research and Financial Engineering Geosciences Chemical Engineering Ph.D. - Biology East Asian Studies
Bryn Mawr CollegeMaster of Social Service Classical and Near Eastern Archaeology Mathematics Physics Greek, Latin, and Classical Studies History of Art Clinical Developmental Psychology Chemistry
Temple UniversityInternational MBA - Tri-Country - Doctorate Philosophy - Doctorate Music Education - Doctorate History - Doctorate English/Language Arts Teacher Education - Doctorate Pathology Medical Microbiology and Bacteriology Mass Media and Communication Dance - Doctorate Adult and Organizational Development - Doctorate Sociology - Doctorate Social Psychology - Doctorate Physical Therapy Pharmaceutical Sciences - Doctorate Ph.D. in Statistics Pharmacy Physics - Doctorate Biochemistry - Doctorate School Health Education - Doctorate Mathematics - Doctorate Medicinal and Pharmaceutical Chemistry (MS, PhD) - Doctorate Master of Tourism and Hospitality Management (MTHM) - Doctorate Mass Communication/Media Studies Economics - Doctorate Communication Management - Doctorate
Thomas Jefferson UniversityDNP: Post-BSN Family/Individual Across the Lifespan DNP: Post-BSN Nursing Informatics DNP: Post-BSN Community Systems Administration DNP: Post-MSN
Gwynedd - Mercy UniversityDoctor of Nursing Practice
Villanova UniversityTheology Ph.D. PhD in Nursing Nursing MS in Mechanical Engineering MS in Chemical Engineering MS in Computer Engineering MS in Water Resources and Environmental Engineering Philosophy MS in Biochemical Engineering Law MS in Civil and Environmental Engineering Ms in Electrical Engineering
Neumann UniversityDoctor of Education: Educational Leadership Ph.D. in Pastoral Counseling Doctor of Physical Therapy
Drexel UniversityDoctor of Education in Educational Leadership and Management
Princeton University-Woodrow Wilson School of Public and International AffairsPublic Affairs and International Relations
West Chester University of PennsylvaniaDoctor of Nursing Practice (D.N.P.)
Holy Family UniversityDoctor of Psychology in Counseling Psychology (PsyD)