Doctorate without a dissertation

Discussion in 'General Distance Learning Discussions' started by turtle, Jul 3, 2006.

  1. turtle

    turtle New Member

    I am interested in exploring any programs that lead to a doctorate in Business or in Education that do not require a dissertation. I would prefer this to be an accredited school or, in the case of non US schools, one that is accepted as equivalent. An example I have found of such a program is:

    Colorado Technical University:

    For those who are about to respond to this post expressing the opinion that a doctorate without a dissertation is not really a doctorate please do not. I respect your personal opinion but would prefer to explore the facts.

    The purpose of this post is to seek help in my research since I cannot possibly look at every school offering a doctorate program myself. It may also prove to be beneficial to others as a body of data for their research.

    Thanks for your assistance.
    Last edited by a moderator: Jul 3, 2006
  2. turtle

    turtle New Member

    Additional information

    Sorry but I forgot to specify that the search is for distance education programs. Short residencies are not a problem.
  3. dl_mba

    dl_mba Member

    Whats the Tuition/Credit for Doctoral Programs?
  4. Randell1234

    Randell1234 Moderator

    Doctorate degree that do not require a dissertation are not PhD's (ofcourse). The are usually DBA's, DM's, etc. and require a final project that difficult.

    As I understand it - PhD's require an orginal body of work. The other doctoral degrees require a practical application of a theory.

    You can look at Nova or UoP or Regent U or Columbia Southern University (if an NA degree works).

    There are a lot of schools that offer a Doctor of Education (EdD). That that require a disseration?
  5. RFValve

    RFValve Well-Known Member

    DBAs require a dissertation in general. Some Australian Schools have some degrees that can be completed by using an industry project.
    The Doctor of Technology at Deaking University is one of those programs that can be completed without a dissertation. However, the price is the "ridiculous" range.
  6. RFValve

    RFValve Well-Known Member

    Here the link to the program, notice that it requires a "research project" and not a dissertation.
  7. Bruce

    Bruce Moderator

    I believe that any doctoral degree from a legitimately-accredited school will require a very significant research assignment, as part of the program. It may be called a dissertation, a thesis, a final project, a research project, or whatever. But, it's going to be there.
  8. kkcheng

    kkcheng Member

    Even though I also prefer doctoral programs with disseration requirements, there are in fact, a number of Australian U's doing this. One that is probably quite affordable is the DBA program at Southern Cross University - see

    However, as far as I know, other than being GAAP, they are neither accredited by AACSB, EQUIS(Euro), or the Association of MBA in UK... so it's just a "pure DBA" ... Check it out if you are okay with this.

  9. Ted Heiks

    Ted Heiks Moderator and Distinguished Senior Member

    I think he may be asking whether the business schools have yet bothered to create a professional doctorate ... 90 sem hrs of straight coursework, often leading to professional licensure, similar to a JD or MD. I'm unaware of the existence of such a beast.
  10. eric.brown

    eric.brown New Member

    Turtle - I know this isn't much help, but the CTU program is the only Doctorate level program in the US that I know about that allows for completion without a dissertation. CTU does require 6 major research projects to be completed (in addition to the coursework) for the DM or DCS.
  11. Ted Heiks

    Ted Heiks Moderator and Distinguished Senior Member

    Re: Re: Doctorate without a dissertation

    The DM at CTU actually requires 12 Research and Writing courses, each for three hours credit, for 36 hours total, and the twelve Research and Writing courses each require a paper of publishable quality. So, it sounds like the 36 credits of Research and Writing would be the equivalent effort of a dissertation, albeit broken up into twelve shorter pieces.
  12. eric.brown

    eric.brown New Member

    Re: Re: Re: Doctorate without a dissertation

    You are correct. The courses result in publishable projects....according the people at CTU that I talked with, these publishable projects require just as much work than a dissertaion would.
  13. SteveFoerster

    SteveFoerster Resident Gadfly Staff Member

    Edith Cowan has one in Education

    Edith Cowan University in Perth, Australia has a practitioners' Doctor of Education that requires projects but not a dissertation/thesis.

    They're full up for 2006, though.

    They also seem to have practitioners' degrees called Doctor of Management, Doctor of Inforamtion Technology and Doctor of Comtemporary Arts. Interesting.

  14. edowave

    edowave Active Member

    Re: Re: Doctorate without a dissertation

    Some programs will let you graduate if you have 3 published peer-reviewed articles in lieu of a dissertation. However, that typically takes much longer than doing a dissertation! Programs that require only a "research project" might sound easier, but might end up requiring more work as well.
    Last edited by a moderator: Jul 4, 2006
  15. SteveFoerster

    SteveFoerster Resident Gadfly Staff Member

    Re: Re: Re: Doctorate without a dissertation

    Which ones? Now I'm curious.

  16. jordan_tn

    jordan_tn New Member

    Re: Re: Re: Doctorate without a dissertation

    This has become more common in traditional doctoral programs. Also, in master's programs as well. It is usually combined as chapters, but the chapters are papers sent off for review. Generally its: Overall Introduction, Various chapters of research projects, Overall Conclusion. I will have four projects at the end of this summer. One is being submitted to a journal for review this week, the others will be sent out when they are written. My hope is to get the first paper in press by the time I defend. That way my committee will have little reason to comment on it since its been through peer-review. My master's thesis was like this. It ended up with two published papers and a third in review right now. With the constant pressure to publish, publish, publish in academia, this seems like a suitable approach to a dissertation. I don't know why this would take longer if you would just submit it as a dissertation and then eventually (if passed through review) the papers would get published. However, if had to wait to get my master's until after the papers were published, then yes it would have been longer. I graduated in 2004 and the third paper has not been published yet; rejected twice due to some statistics issues.
    Last edited by a moderator: Jul 4, 2006
  17. JoAnnP38

    JoAnnP38 Member

    Re: Re: Re: Re: Doctorate without a dissertation

    Welcome to the forum Jordan. I started out at the University of Tennessee at Knoxville majoring in Engineering Physics when I was a youngster. What is your expertise?
  18. jordan_tn

    jordan_tn New Member

    Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Doctorate without a dissertation

    Thanks for the welcome. I've been reading through the forums here for a few days and thought I would add to the discussion. I work with invasive plant species, studying how they interact with native plants and insect communities.
  19. eric.brown

    eric.brown New Member

    Welcome to the forums Jordan. Good luck in your studies at U of Tenn.
  20. turtle

    turtle New Member


    Thank you all for posting and providing information. If there are any others who can add to the list please do so.

    If I am reading the information correctly:

    RFValve has identified a Doctor of Technology at Deakin University in Austrailia.

    kkcheng advises that the DBA at Southern Cross University in Australia may meet the requirements

    SteveForester refers to Edith Cowan University, again in Australia, offering an Ed.D distance program that does not require a dissertation. He also suggests that they have other Doctorate programs in business that might meet the criteria

    That is certainly a small list and it is interesting to note that the Universities are all from Australia. As Ted Heiks correctly surmized my interest is in Schools who choose to look at education in new and innovative ways although I had not contemplated a totally course work driven doctorate as a possibility.

    I am quite interested in the comments from jordan_tn about it becoming more common to accept 3 published peer reviewed articles in lieu of a dissertation. If I read his post correctly the MS from Michigan Technology University as well as the Ph.D from University of Tennessee both follow this path. Perhaps we can have Jordan expand on this theme a little further or maybe there are others out there who can chime in.

    Finally for those who cautioned that the "projects" and "published articles" are probably not easier than a dissertation I was not looking for an easier path just a different one. Thank you for your notes of caution and advice.

Share This Page