Obtaining a PhD in Education is an emerging important track for those wishing to pursue or excel as a professional and leader in the field of higher education. The range and scope of higher education changes drastically year to year with more access to online accredited programs and a global approach to education. Because of these rapid annual changes, the need for leadership when shaping the future of higher education in the United States is ever-increasing. Scholarship, interest in exploring groundbreaking research, creative minds geared towards innovation, and a passion for learning are all elements that make up the ideal candidate for obtaining an online doctorate degree in Education.
Though there are other tracks to follow when exploring career opportunities in higher education leadership, this particular ranking focuses solely on PhD programs. If you are interested in licensure or taking the EdD route check out our Top 40 Most Affordable EdD ranking. The PhD programs are not licensure programs by default, though some programs may comply with state licensure requirements. Check with each schools PhD department for specific details on licensure. The PhD track is research based with a focus on understanding, anticipating, and shaping the future of higher education in America.
The Online PhD Rankings are determined by evaluating through three core measurements: institution reputation through Niche Scores, student outcomes measured with IPED alumni salary data, and Affordability according to in-state annual tuition rates. All three of these angles used to determine the Online PhD Rankings are weighted evenly.
Most programs explored in this article can be completed fully online though some hybrid or low residency programs require time on a traditional campus. All programs are accredited in some capacity, but check the individual school websites for specifics in accreditation.
1. UNIVERSITY OF COLORADO – DENVER
The University of Colorado at Denver is located in the urban heart of Colorado's capital city offering interdisciplinary, top-tier academics and research opportunities to students from the undergraduate to doctorate levels. All fifty states are represented via the diverse student population and the faculty, both on campus and online, are made of up experts and top professionals in their fields. The institution offers one of the highest ranked doctoral programs in higher education in the nation. The hybrid online Doctor of Philosophy in Education and Human Development program is a one of a kind, research-based degree program for individuals interested in taking leadership and executive positions in the realm of education. Core course work is combined with scholarly academics. Classes are offered at a variety of times and on campus class requirements take place during the day, evenings, and weekends. Student can choose the format in which they complete the program: fully online, hybrid, or on the traditional campus. There are a minimum of fifteen hours per week of out-of-class time work required as well as twenty hours per week of research time. The program takes three to six years to complete and students can maintain their current jobs while earning a degree to advance their careers.