ColoradoTech's Doctorate in Computer Science or Nova's Ph.D in Information Systems?

Discussion in 'IT and Computer-Related Degrees' started by TEKMAN, Aug 10, 2012.

  1. jfitzg

    jfitzg Member

    My favorite part of Colorado Tech is how the marketing department is the one that creates the degrees. Doctor of Computer Science? LOL! Show me any other college in the world that offers a doctor of computer science, not a doctor of science as most colleges offer, but a doctor of computer science. Next they will offer a Doctor of Software Development with a concentration in Java. The D.SD!

    Ahhh, good old for profits, always good for a laugh!
  2. CalDog

    CalDog New Member

    This is true, but it's not really a big deal -- it's a common classification among for-profit universities. Furthermore, CTU could drop out of that category in the future.

    Carnegie classifies schools as "Doctorate-Granting Universities" if they "awarded at least 20 research doctorates in 2008-09". Then they recognize three subcategories of Doctorate-Granting Universities, depending on the level of "research activity":

    - DRU: Doctoral/Research Universities
    - RU/H: Research Universities (high research activity)
    - RU/VH: Research Universities (very high research activity)

    CTU-Colorado Springs is currently classified as DRU. This tells us that it granted at least 20 research doctorates in 2008-09, and that the level of research was considered relatively low. Many other for-profit universities -- like Argosy, Capella, Northcentral, University of Phoenix Online, and Walden -- are also in this category. The DRU category also includes non-profits; some random examples are Central Michigan, South Carolina State, Pace, and Texas Christian.

    However, CTU-Colorado Springs could fall out of this category in the next Carnegie update. According to College Navigator, they only granted 18 doctorates in 2010-11. That's below the level of 20 that defines a "Doctorate-Granting University" in the Carnegie classification.


    Nova Southeastern, for comparison, is currently classified as RU/H, indicating a doctorate-granting university with a "high level" of research activity. There are no for-profit schools in this category, only public and private non-profits. Other random examples of RU/H schools: Alabama, San Diego State, Syracuse, and Boston College.
    Last edited by a moderator: Jan 3, 2013

    TEKMAN Semper Fi!

    lol! I found that the Atlantic International University of Pacific (Pacific because the mailing address is in Hawaii) offer Doctor of Computer Science as well. :)
  4. drdawson

    drdawson New Member

    Well let me state that the College of Engineering & Computer Science at Colorado Technical University has a great doctoral program. They are a NSA CAE for IA, multiple CNSS certifications, ABET accreditation, D/RU classification, and undergoing ACBSP accreditation. In reference to the Carnegie Classification they only count research based doctorate and the Doctor of Management (DM) does not count so technically the number is 5 per the link given. The number of graduates they calculate is over a five year time span. Additionally, they break out the campuses so I am a graduate of the Doctor of Computer Science (D.CS.) program at this institution and have been very satisfied with the program. Very few institutions are listed as a very high research university and Nova Southeastern University has many research doctoral programs in the sciences. In terms of the naming many schools select the applied research doctorate name such as Doctor of Engineering (D.Eng.) due to a potential of duplication. See Morgan State University's D.Eng. and M.Eng. program which I used to teach in. At the state level it is very political on who can say they have a Ph.D. vs a D.Eng./D.CS./D.Sc./DBA/DM/DPS.

    Now there are multiple types of doctoral degrees and my recommendation is to select a program that fits your needs. However at the end you will need to publish peer reviewed proceedings, peer reviewed journal articles, book chapters, and more to truly make full use of any doctoral degree.

    In terms of D.CS. graduates in tenure track institutions or careers please see below.

    1. Dr. Peggy Leonowich-Graham, Assistant Professor, West Point Military Academy, Department of Electrical Engineering and Computer Science - Faculty
    2. Dr. Maurice Eugene Dawson Jr., Assistant Professor, Alabama A&M University, Maurice E. Dawson Jr. - Google Scholar Citations
    3. Dr. Barcus Jackson, former Assistant Professor, Missouri Baptist University, Dr. Barcus C. Jackson | LinkedIn
    4. Dr. Shawn Murray, Principle Scientisti, DoD Contractor, Dr. Shawn P. Murray | LinkedIn
    5. Dr. Derek Phair, Solutions Architect, LDS Contractor, Derek Phair, DCS | LinkedIn
    6. Dr. Will Henry, Communication & Network Engineer, MITRE, Dr. Will Henry | LinkedIn
    7. Dr. Derek Peterson, VP of IT, Boingo Wirless, Dr . Derek Peterson | LinkedIn
    8. Dr. Onkar Singh, IT Professor, Barclays,

    DCS Faculty
    1. Dr. Bo Sanden, Professor of Computer Science, bo sanden - Google Scholar
    2. Dr. Cynthia Calongne, Professor of Emerging Media, cynthia calongne - Google Scholar

    DM Faculty
    1. Dr. Emad Rahim, University Dean of the College of Business, Emad Rahim - Google Scholar Citations

    Homeland Security Faculty
    1. Dr. Nadav Morag, University Dean of Homeland Security, NADAV MORAG - Google Scholar

    Feel free to see some of my research at the following links below. There are more graduate likes myself and I only placed a few of those that I know above.

    1.Alabama A&M University Maurice Dawson | Alabama A&M University -
    2. IATED Digital Library MAURICE DAWSON - IATED Digital Library
    3. Emerald Insight Publisher Emerald | Cutting-edge Technologies in Higher Education | Use of Open Source Software and Virtualization in Academia to Enhance Higher Education Everywhere
    4. Common Ground Publishing Maurice Dawson
    5. AACE Information Technology Digital Library Ed/ITLib Digital Library → Search Results
    6. Virginia Tech Center for Instructional Development Center for Instructional Development and Educational Research (CIDER) | Virginia Tech
    7. Int. J. of Project Organisation and Management Inderscience Publishers
    8. International Journal of Business Continuity and Risk Management International Journal of Business Continuity and Risk Management (IJBCRM) - Inderscience Publishers
    9. Editor of the Journal of Information Systems Technology & Planning

    Academia is all about (R)esearch, (T)eaching, & (P)rofessional Service if that is what you wish to pursue. Good luck on your decision and feel free contact me if you have any questions about the program or others.
  5. jabramson

    jabramson New Member

    The degree has been around a long time. Why are you comparing Colorado Technical to an unaccredited school? No one is saying that Nova is not a good school. Calling a school a joke because you got a marketing call(s). You are in a far better position to make judgements about CTU?

    It is a research doctorate, Doctor of Computer Science. It is not a joke it is accredited and apparently scares you. Take a look at the faculty, they are not a joke. Many of the graduates of the program have tenure track positions. I am actually interviewing for a few positions, two of them are tenure track. Do I think that not for profit might be more desirable, maybe, yet there were no schools that had what I was looking for in 2008.

    Other universities that are not for profit do a fair amount of marketing as well. How many mailers, etc. have you received from other universities. If marketing calls are your only argument, combined with the DCS, than I am not sure that this is a strong argument. They could have called it a Ph.D., I believe that they had authorization to do so as well. This is not a new degree, it has been awarded since the 90's. My personal view with DL, which this program is not considered, is that if University of Phoenix had not innovated and taken many shots to the chin, there would have been little change in education. Because some of these universities were innovators, many of the non-profits were forced to change and offer classes that were more accessible.

    Take a look at the faculty, former students, and if you have access to Proquest, review a few dissertations. When conducting my literature for my own dissertation, I found plenty of dissertations from some schools that are highly ranked, that should have never seen the light of day. This was not my own judgement, but something that others, faculty that have graduated from what you would call top tier universities agreed with. It sounds like you have a good background in higher education, I am surprised by the statements about CTU, Colorado Springs.

    Calling CTU a joke or diploma mill, borders on slander. Unfortunately, many universities have marketing people that may do more harm than good, non-profit, for profit, private not for profit, included. Please elevate the discussion.

    Jonathan Abramson, D.C.Sc.
  6. jfitzg

    jfitzg Member

    Because there are only two college in the **WORLD** that offer this type of degree, how that can NOT be a red flag to any person with any shred of critical thinking skills is beyond me...

    I looked over the faculty list, and while most of them have legit degrees from non profit schools, none of their degrees really stand out. Anyone can go get a PHD from a state school as most of these people have, their are no high tier degrees in the program, so while they are better than for profit educators, they arent all that as you are trying to make them out...

    What were you looking for in 2008? Id bet dollars to donuts there were online programs available for what you were looking for back then.

    All schools do marketing, but not all schools have the marketing department create the degrees...

    Thats great, that still doesnt change the fact that only two college in the WORLD offer this degree! Once again, how that can NOT be a red flag to any person with any shred of critical thinking skills is beyond me... I would put my money on that CTU did NOT have authorization to call it a PHD else they most certainly would have.

    UOP has taken many shots to the chin because they DESERVE it! There are plenty of good online schools, UofP is not one of them...

    Why are you surprised people are bashing CTU? Respect is earned, not given, what has CTU done to earn anyone's respect? If you read the numerous (and I mean numerous) online reviews of CTU it really doesnt sound any different than UofP, it offers a substandard "education" at a grossly inflated price...

    No, calling CTU a joke diploma mill is called freedom of speech, and is stating a fact. Also its libel, not slander... Also opinions are protected speech so even if you wanted CTU to sue for libel (not slander), it would be thrown out in court...
  7. SteveFoerster

    SteveFoerster Resident Gadfly Staff Member

    Well, as someone with a decade working in higher education, including transcript evaluation and related responsibilities, I'm not even slightly bothered by it. Their use of nomenclature is unusual, and I agree it's probably marketing driven, but it's not outside of what's acceptable in higher education.

    By the way, speaking of red flags, when you call CTU a degree mill, it lets those here with experience know you can be safely disregarded. By no means is it a degree mill. Way too expensive, sure. Unremarkable, probably. But "degree mill" means something in particular and that ain't it.
  8. Jonathan Whatley

    Jonathan Whatley Well-Known Member

    I'm interested in bioethics. I recently noticed that the Neiswanger Institute of Bioethics at Loyola University Chicago has introduced a professional doctorate in bioethics titled the D.Bioethics.

    It seems that no one else in the "**WORLD**" offers a degree with this title. I guess you'd hold that this supports a conclusion that Loyola University Chicago is a "joke diploma mill."

    Alright then.
  9. me again

    me again Well-Known Member

    jfitzg, a degree mill offers degrees for money and without any work on the part of the student. Pay your $500 and you are awarded a degree. The colleges and universities that are regionally accredited are not degree mills, such as CTU or a state university or a community college. The regional accreditators ensure that minimum standards exist. Diploma mills cannot achieve regional accreditation.
  10. TEKMAN

    TEKMAN Semper Fi!

    Dr. Abramson:

    You quoted my thread on the top of your reply, does this mean you are saying I criticize Colorado Technical University? I have no negative thought on Colorado Technical University at all, my philosophy is public schools with high reputation is the first choice. The second choice would be private for non-profit, and the last would be private for profit. As long as the degree is regional accredited, and professional accreditation would be secondary.

    I was laughing because one of the replies said the degree was created by the Marketing Department. And I did my search, the second institute offers D.C.S is Atlantic International University.

    I know you're trying to defense your degree and its reputation, but you don't have to accuse me criticizing Colorado Technical University's credential.
  11. jabramson

    jabramson New Member

    Dr. Foerster,

    Thanks for posting, I appreciate your perspective. My position was not one that CTU Colorado Springs is the panacea of educational achievement (although I feel it is, for me :) ), yet there were no freebies and many in my cohort had/have dropped out, as this is a large commitment and a ton of work. Dr. Jeffery Stevens, Texas A&M was my mentor and helped me, yet challenged me every step of the way, I could not have done this without his guidance and challenges. Dr. Maurice Dawson, DCS, who has posted here as well, aided me in attending a conference and presenting a paper, and as serving as a reader for my dissertation and aided me with Dr. Stevens and Dr. Danette Lance Ph.D., Capella University, who is a dean at Jones, International, had motivated and provided me with great insights and challenges as well. Most people do not finish the program in three years. I was fortunate to work online part-time and basically work FT on the degree. There are two classes per quarter, one class which is a reading and writing class and the other which is a CS or IS topic. One of my professors at CTU was Dr. Caroline Howard, Ph.D., University of California, Irvine and MBA from Wharton School of Business. She is one of the many excellent professors at the school that taught me about academic research. Dr. Barcus Jackson, DCS was an inspiration as well and helped me develop my topic. I personally did not think that I was going to graduate for a long time as they seem to keep the heat on you until the end (certainly feels like hazing). I felt quite ill while defending the proposal and dissertation, even though I was more than prepared in retrospect.

    More information than you probably care to read, yet the experience for me was fantastic, although after reading and studying for three years solid, takes its toll. For a non-traditional student, that had gone in the Army after high school and then graduated an on-ground state school (Central CT State University), and then earned two masters online, I was quite pleased and proud to graduate in October, 2012.

    Best Regards,

    Jon Abramson
  12. jabramson

    jabramson New Member


    I apologize for implying this. I felt that the other posts from some others were mean spirited and without merit. I respect your philosophy on school selection, I actually agree with you. Yet, in NW CT and a family and teaching responsibilities, my options were limited and UCONN in Storrs, CT was not an option for traveling, family commitment, etc. I was also not sure that I could get into the program, although my GPA 3.7+ and experience is arguably good. UCONN is a fantastic university and I actually worked at the Health Center in Farmington, CT previously.

    There are plenty of great masters programs online from all sorts of schools (lots of choice), it seems to change daily. I am not an expert on doctoral offerings online or online with residencies (which I think is necessary after my experiences), yet when I was researching this decision in 2007,2008, 2009, my options seemed more limited than even today. There is obvious change happening in higher education, there are some good effects and bad ones as well. I hope that many non-profits do not lower their standards, yet do make their programs more accessible for qualified individuals.


  13. jabramson

    jabramson New Member


    Good point, I agree with Dr. Foerster and Dr. Dawson, that this is not an issue. Accreditation, reputation, utility, etc. should probably be the drivers of your decision, not the degree name. Does it meet your needs and can you get in?


  14. jabramson

    jabramson New Member


    I apologize, I felt as though you were going to town on CTU, Colorado Springs, without justification. In retrospect, I see that these comments were coming from others. I agree with you, this sounds like a good strategy with education, I do think that the field is beginning to change.

    Nova Southeastern is a great choice. One of my previous instructors Dr. Glenn Stout, Ph.D. is a Nova Southeastern graduate, he teaches a great class in information assurance.

    Best Regards,

    Jon A.
  15. novadar

    novadar Member

    Congrats on your doctorate Steve. Please fill us in on the details (insert funky sound effect).

  16. SteveFoerster

    SteveFoerster Resident Gadfly Staff Member

    I appreciate Jon erring on the side of caution, but he misspoke. I don't have any degrees that aren't in my sig.
  17. ITJD

    ITJD Active Member

    Alright, so after watching this thread circle around a bit and seeing some of the responses.

    1. If anything I wrote based on my opinion offended people who:

    a. Spent a good amount of money at CTU.
    b. Teach at CTU
    c. Got the government or corporate America to front the bill to CTU
    d. Worked their butt off at CTU

    I apologize. Honest apology. It's clear that there are graduates from the school that have gotten hired by universities. In all cases those students have done well based on research, publication and professional effort. My opinion is they'd have done well regardless of where they went to school; but certainly CTU is a part of their success.

    2. If CTU wants to correct the impressions that I've personally gotten from the school to date, and I've been looking for a good technology doctoral program for a while.

    a. Call off the marketing department.
    b. Call a degree in IT a degree in IT, a degree in IA, a degree in IA. Computer Science is a completely different discipline, has been for a long time, and the market expects a certain amount of mathematic and engineering foundation from anyone with a CS degree that won't exist in an IA or IT doctorate. At best, it's smarmy and capitalistic.

    I'm glad that the school doesn't seem to be as bad as my initial impression. I'd still prefer NOVA for now. No other reason than the place doesn't provoke these kinds of confusions. Maybe that will change in the future.

  18. jabramson

    jabramson New Member


    Thanks, I think that there some relevance to your argument. I would call the school directly and tell them that they are bothering you and to stop calling. As far as the naming of the degree, I am not sure that I have a problem with it. I do understand the distinction that you are making, and see how this could be confusing, I do not think that this was done with the intention to try and fool anyone. I would have gone into the program regardless of the name of the degree. There are definite differences in the DCS programs which is distinguished with the degree's concentration.

    I am sure that you will find a good program for yourself. The Nova Southeastern program looks great. If you do have any questions about the CTU Colorado Springs campus, whether or not you are interested, call them. They will probably have you talk with the dean. Talk directly with the campus and not another location.

    Best Regards,

  19. ITJD

    ITJD Active Member

    Thanks Jon -

    To be fair, I don't think anyone would have a problem with stating they have a degree in computer science regardless of its level. Certainly the definition of science as it relates to computing is relative and concentrations would provide a distinction if people looked that closely.

    Perhaps my issue with it comes from being on the outside of the academic market at present, but I note that the number of opportunities for positions for doctoral degree holders in IT and IA has gone down over the last 10 years, but those opportunities in technology academia that do exist ask specifically for an accredited doctorate in computer science.

    So to me, it just looked like another for-profit move to position a program as something better aligned with the job market regardless of what the program actually would be called by a majority of schools. Alone, maybe not so bad. Combine it with the marketing/admissions push and cost, it just leaves the school open for questions that may not be fair.

    Thanks for discussing this with me.

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