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  1. #17
    lifelonglearner is offline Registered User
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    A couple of phone calls later ....

    Others tell me their common language is to talk about "terminal professional degrees" (meaning the M.Ed, Ed.D, M.Div., J.D. ...) and the "terminal degree" (meaning the Ph.D or equivalent).

    Most California public universities require that the appropriate degree be listed in all academic job announcements.

    lifelonglearner

  2. #18
    nosborne48 is offline Registered User
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    So maybe I'm asking the wrong question. Maby I should ask, "What does it mean to hold a terminal degree in terms of academic employment?"

    Boalt Hall does indeed employ a variety of doctors but in this as in so many other things, Boalt Hall is a bit of an anomoly. ;)

    UC Berkeley's law school offers the usual spread of law degrees (J.D., LL.M., and J.S.D.) but it also (most unusually) offers the Ph.D. (M.A. for non finishers) in Jurisprudence an Social Policy.

    Judging from the web site, Berkeley wants to attract LOTS of J.S.P. Ph.D. students and makes no effort at all to attract J.S.D. students. Odd, because Boalt Hall considers the Ph.D. to be the higher ranked degree judging by their commencement order.

    In any event, I doubt that any law school would long remain ABA accredited if a majority of its law professors lacked the J.D.
    Nosborne48
    J.D. University of New Mexico
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  3. #19
    lifelonglearner is offline Registered User
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    So maybe I'm asking the wrong question. Maby I should ask, "What does it mean to hold a terminal degree in terms of academic employment?"

    I do not understand your question.

    lifelonglearner

  4. #20
    Jack Tracey is offline Registered User
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    I would agree with Tony's post, at least in regards to the fact that even though a PhD in Social Work exists, and can be earned in most university Social Work departments, the MSW is considered to be the terminal degree. Why? Maybe it's got to do with licensure? Otherwise, I really don't know. Also, consider this hypothetical situation. A person enrolls in a PhD program and after several years of coursework, etc. withdraws from the program without completing their dissertation. Subsequently, they are awarded a Masters degree for their efforts. Is this Masters degree not referred to as a "terminal degree" or "terminal Masters degree?"
    Jack

  5. #21
    lifelonglearner is offline Registered User
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    Is this Masters degree not referred to as a "terminal degree" or "terminal Masters degree?"

    I would say no, because it is not the final (terminal) degree that can be obtained in the academic area. Just because you have terminated your efforts, does not mean it's a terminal degree.

    The answer to this question may belong to the hiring institution or agency. If they say it is terminal then, by their definition, it is. So look to the perspective of the instituion or agency, no the view of the learner.


    lifelonglearner

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  7. #22
    DesElms is offline Registered User
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    Cool You mean...?

    Originally posted by nosborne48
    What is meant by a "terminal degree;" and what specific degrees are considered "terminal"?
    I always thought it was a degree that damned-near killed ya' to earn it. You mean it doesn't have anything to do with Nietzsche?

    ;)
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  8. #23
    CoachTurner is offline Registered User
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    First Professional is the name for the degree which is the minimum required credential in a professional occupation. JD and MD are examples of a first professional degree. These are not terminal and often an MA/MSc is considered a higher academic credential -- such as an MD who also holds an Master of Public Health or the JD who also holds a Master of Taxation . Other First Professionals include the MDiv, DO, DVM, DDS, B. Pharm, and DC to name a few.

    Some people like to consider that a BEd or MEd are "first professional" but this isn't exactly a generally accepted example. ACE publishes a list of what they consider to be first professional

    Terminal Degree generally refers to the highest degree that is considered appropriate for academic/faculty professional appointments. This may or may not be the highest possible degree in a broad academic area. It often is.

    In almost all cases, the PhD is a terminal degree. The DMA (Doctor of Musical Arts) is also a terminal degree. Though it is possible (and not all that uncommon) to get a PhD in music, most people don't expect the holder of a DMA to pursue any further degree -- his DMA is terminal.

    Of masters I'm aware of in which the doctorate is not commonly considered terminal are the MFA degrees in both theater arts and creative writing. I believe that the MFA in Art Studio is also considered teminal. Many universities have faculty holding an MFA in these fields as their terminal degree.

    I'm not sure that I buy that an MBA is a terminal degree. At least not for academic purposes. The DBA and PhD in most business specialties is too readily available.

    Indiana University gives a definition of Terminal Degree as "the highest degree in a field" and gives the M Arch. and MFA as examples.

    What confuses some is that, while it is possible to get a PhD in Art History or an EdD in Art Education -- the highest application degree in the field of Studio Art is generally the MFA.

    The same idea applies in music -- where it is possible to get a PhD or EdD in some specializations in music -- the DMA is generally the highest degree in the performance of music.

    In the English and communications departments, an MFA in creative writing is generally accepted as terminal. A PhD in Creative Writing is a very uncommon offering.

    To confuse matters a bit more -- an Associate of Applied Science in Cosmetology would generally be considered the terminal degree for a hair stylist.

    We have to consider the specialty within the broader academic area when we consider what the highest degree in that field is.

    Just a few thoughts...
    -----
    Carson Turner
    Myrtle Beach, South Carolina
    BA, Coastal Carolina University
    BSLS, Excelsior College
    MA, MBA, MA, Webster University
    MAIS, Western New Mexico University (due 2013)

  9. #24
    Anthony Pina is offline Registered User
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    Interesting discussion. I always appreciate the good knowledge possessed by members of this forum. Blewo are a few clarifications:

    Lifelonglearner: It is generally accepted that a person with a Ph.D. is a) and expert in their subject area, b) fully capable of undertaking research, and c) has classroom teaching experience.

    Tony: a) and b) are correct, c) is not. Earning a Ph.D. degree generally does not mean that the person has any classroom teaching experience at all.


    MarilynD : I have always understood "terminal degree" to mean the specific degree or level of degree generally required for the highest level of employment in a particular field. There are some fields--computer animation , for instance--in which the bachelor's degree is usually considered terminal. Perhaps this is not the precise way of stating it, but it is how I have always conceived it.

    Tony: This is a correct understanding of the term. In air conditioning & refrigeration , for example, an associate of science degree is considered a terminal degree for the profession.

    William H. Walters: I've always understood "terminal degree" to mean a research doctorate, except in (1) law, (2) medicine, and (3) those fields in which no research doctorate is offered.

    Tony: In most cases this is true. However, the J.D., a terminal degree, is not a research doctorate, but the S.J.D. is. I am not sure whether the doctor of social work (DSW) is a research degree, but the master of social work (MSW ) is considered a terminal degree.

    Lifelonglearner: Others tell me their common language is to talk about "terminal professional degrees" (meaning the M.Ed, Ed.D, M.Div., J.D. ...) and the "terminal degree" (meaning the Ph.D or equivalent).

    Tony: The M.Div and J.D. are professional degrees. The M.Ed. is not typically considered a terminal degree at all and the Ed.D. is a research doctorate, not a professional degree.

    Tony Pina
    Administrator, Northeastern Illinois University

  10. #25
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    For example, a Doctor of Jurisprudence (J.D.) degree may be considered a terminal degree in law.

    Penk v. Oregon State Bd. of Higher Educ. 1985 WL 25631 Feb 13, 1985

  11. #26
    nosborne48 is offline Registered User
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    Aha, Dr. Latin Juris! At last, someone found a case! I can't wait to read it!

    lifelonglearner,

    My question was a bit obscure. What I meant was, you say that the J.D. is not a "terminal degree" and point to the J.S.D. or other Ph.D. equivalent in law as being the terminal degree. That makes sense to me from a theoretical standpoint.

    However, I see that many, many professors of law, including professors at Boalt Hall and UCLA, possess the J.D. as their highest degree.

    From this came my question: Is a terminal degree routinely necessary to receive tenure?
    Nosborne48
    J.D. University of New Mexico
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  12. #27
    Mike Albrecht is offline Registered User
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    according to some parts of the University of California system, the original defnition supplied above was correct.

    UC DAVIS FACULTY FELLOWS PROGRAM http://www.ucop.edu/acadadv/acadpers...ows-davis.html
    candidates must have received a Ph.D. or terminal degree (M.F.A., M.L.A., etc.)

  13. #28
    nosborne48 is offline Registered User
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    Dr. Latin Juris' case should be of professional interest to lifelonglearner.

    Not only does it say exactly what Dr. Latin Juris says it says, but it says it in the context of a class action equal protection federal suit.

    Apparently the salary and promotion model used by the State discriminated against holders of terminal degrees other than the Ph.D. That in itself probably wouldn't trigger an equal protection Title VII claim but the effect of the discrimination fell disproportionately on women employees. (If I got it right; I just glanced at the opinion.)

    It's worth reading carefully.
    Nosborne48
    J.D. University of New Mexico
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  15. #29
    lifelonglearner is offline Registered User
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    From this came my question: Is a terminal degree routinely necessary to receive tenure?

    This question can only be answered by the institution granting tenure.


    Tony: a) and b) are correct, c) is not. Earning a Ph.D. degree generally does not mean that the person has any classroom teaching experience at all.

    I have yet to meet a Ph.D who didn't work as a TA, teach undergrads, or engage in some form of classroom teaching . Then again I only routinely deal with folks in the humanities. Note that I am not saying they are adequately trained as teachers . Unfortunately, there is a general assumption that if one has a Ph.D one can teach. Just as there is a assumption that if one has a Ph.D one can write, even though most have not taken a writing course beyond English Comp 101.

    lifelonglearner

  16. #30
    Anthony Pina is offline Registered User
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    Originally posted by lifelonglearner
    From this came my question: Is a terminal degree routinely necessary to receive tenure?

    This question can only be answered by the institution granting tenure.


    Tony: a) and b) are correct, c) is not. Earning a Ph.D. degree generally does not mean that the person has any classroom teaching experience at all.

    I have yet to meet a Ph.D who didn't work as a TA, teach undergrads, or engage in some form of classroom teaching . Then again I only routinely deal with folks in the humanities. Note that I am not saying they are adequately trained as teachers . Unfortunately, there is a general assumption that if one has a Ph.D one can teach. Just as there is a assumption that if one has a Ph.D one can write, even though most have not taken a writing course beyond English Comp 101.

    lifelonglearner
    Both you and I (and most people on this forum) know the fallacy of the idea that having a PhD means that one can teach. Many PhD programs (especially those with high enrollment) lack opportunities for teaching assistantships. I know quite a few doctoral students who never taught courses, yet filled research assistantships during their doctoral studies. Some of us worked as faculty for other institutions while we pursued our doctorates.

    Tony

  17. #31
    nosborne48 is offline Registered User
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    lifelonglearner:

    I wonder if you could point me to an American Ph.D. program in business law. I became curious about what such a degree might consist of but have been unable to locate one.

    Thanks.
    Nosborne48
    J.D. University of New Mexico
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  18. #32
    lifelonglearner is offline Registered User
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    I wonder if you could point me to an American Ph.D. program in business law. I became curious about what such a degree might consist of but have been unable to locate one.

    hmmmm .... I recall doing a google search and seeing several ... that is my best lead

    lifelonglearner

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