Ed.D vs DBA

Discussion in 'Education, Teaching and related degrees' started by cmjcolucci, Sep 14, 2011.

  1. cmjcolucci

    cmjcolucci New Member

    I want to teach online classes at the college level. I have an MBA and want to further my education . I can't choose between a DBA in management or Ed.D. in online learning. I'm thinking the DBA is better because most colleges want instructors to be to have more credits in the subject they teach. However, An Ed.D in online learning may stand out on a resume to be an online instructor. Any suggestions, or pros and cons of each program?
  2. Ted Heiks

    Ted Heiks Moderator and Distinguished Senior Member Staff Member

    Go for the DBA.
  3. StefanM

    StefanM New Member

    I agree. Do the DBA. For an instructor, content knowledge is better than a degree in online learning.
  4. Randell1234

    Randell1234 Moderator Staff Member

    I suggest the DBA but you can also consider a different topic to expand the teaching opportunities. If you already have an MBA in Management, why not a DBA in Finance or HR or something else.
  5. cmjcolucci

    cmjcolucci New Member

    Thanks for all your responses. Really appreciate it.
  6. mcjon77

    mcjon77 Member

    Definitely go for the DBA. For better or for worse, many departments look down on an instructor whose doctorate is in education, as opposed to the subject matter they teach (in your case, business).
  7. RFValve

    RFValve Well-Known Member

    i don't want to disrespect people with EdDs but a doctorate in online learning has very limited use. Most online adjunct positions do not call for specialized training in online learning as this is something you can easily learn on your own but call for specialized training in a particular business field in demand.
    A DBA in Finance, Accounting, Operations, Marketing has a lot more utility than an EdD in online learning.
    If you really want to differentiate your self from the crowd, work on a particular business certification that has demand such as a CPA, CFE, CMA, CFA, etc.
  8. SteveFoerster

    SteveFoerster Resident Gadfly Staff Member

    I'm in the midst of earning an EdD and I'll be the first to agree with you. If being competitive for adjunct gigs were my goal, this wouldn't have been the right program for it.

    Of course, if I change my mind, I suppose I can always take eighteen semester-hours of Accounting later. :)
  9. Ted Heiks

    Ted Heiks Moderator and Distinguished Senior Member Staff Member

    An EdD in Online Learning would be overkill for a prospective online adjunct.
  10. mcjon77

    mcjon77 Member

    The biggest value I could find for someone with an EdD in online learning would not be teaching. It would be administering/managing a school's online learning program, OR starting your own company that specializes in online learning (either consulting or offering a product).
  11. Ted Heiks

    Ted Heiks Moderator and Distinguished Senior Member Staff Member

    Do you think that one could get a position as Director of Distance Learning fresh out of an EdD in Online Learning or would one likely expect to serve as Professor of Distance Learning before going up into the administration as Director of Distance Learning?
  12. ITJD

    ITJD Active Member

    No disrespect but having a doctorate does not make you competitive for adjunct gigs. It opens a door to a conversation about potentially getting a gig, but you'll find that what makes you competitive is having publications beyond your dissertation, teaching experience and academic connections, not much unlike what makes you competitive for tenured gigs.

    I know people on 30+ publications with the right connections and a Masters that got snapped up with no teaching experience over people with doctorates and no teaching experience. Course now, they're really competitive for adjunct jobs and have no issues getting assignments with new schools.

    This said, I have a Masters and 20 years of professional experience and I'm sure that even with the doctorate, until I promote myself in the right circles and present a few times I'm not going to get a gig unless the school is absolutely desperate, and frankly accepting those types of jobs just lowers my own standing.
  13. StefanM

    StefanM New Member

    The route to those kind of administrative jobs does not run through the professoriate. I've never heard of a "professor of distance learning." Most of the time, such faculty would be in the school of education as professors of education or educational technology, depending on the angle (pedagogical or technical). An administrative role for this track would likely be Dean of the School of Education.

    Distance learning administrators are likely university staff members, not faculty.
  14. Shelley Watson

    Shelley Watson New Member

    Very true Stefan

    The administrators of distance education are necessarily the staff of the same university. They won't hire any faculty from outside, or anyone who prefers working as a freelancer. So a person applying for such administrative work need to qualify the university's requirement.
  15. Anthony Pina

    Anthony Pina Active Member

    I am part of a research team that is studying the degrees held by business faculty at U.S. universities. While we are finding a surprising number of faculty with Ed.D.s, there are definitely far more with DBAs.
  16. Shawn Ambrose

    Shawn Ambrose New Member

    At my university - here's the breakdown...

    Dean - MBA
    Asst. Dean - Ph.D.


    CPA - 1
    JD/MBA - 1
    Ed.D - 2
    Ph.D. - 4
    Ph.D. Candidate - 1

    FYI - we consider the CPA and the JD/MBA terminal degrees. ACBSP is fine with this as well. Our school is an ABSCP candidate and our site visit was last month.

    That being said, I believe I would choose a DBA over an Ed.D.

    Last edited by a moderator: Nov 3, 2011
  17. Bruce

    Bruce Moderator Staff Member

    I know I'm late to the party, but I would also recommend the D.B.A. over the Ed.D. for your situation. You can always go back for a graduate certificate in online/distance learning (there are a lot of them available) later to improve your marketability to online programs.
    Last edited by a moderator: Nov 4, 2011
  18. SteveFoerster

    SteveFoerster Resident Gadfly Staff Member

    He could, but a graduate certificate is expensive and a hell of a lot of work. He'd be better off finding some outfit (even that's not a university) that would let him teach an online course on a volunteer basis in exchange for a glowing recommendation. As someone in the hiring process for online adjuncts, that sort of evidence of previous success would tip the balance a lot faster with me than a graduate certificate in e-learning.
  19. Bruce

    Bruce Moderator Staff Member

    A certificate for distance learning need not be expensive or drawn out; Indiana University offers a program for $599 that can be completed in a short amount of time. No academic credit, but a nice add to the resume, especially for someone concerned about a lack of DL training/experience;

    Certificate in Distance Education: Online: Professional Programs: School of Continuing Studies: Indiana University

    Every school to which I've applied for an online adjunct position (including the ones who hired me) were all about the credentials, and didn't even contact any of my references.
  20. Shawn Ambrose

    Shawn Ambrose New Member


    Thanks for the tip on the cert in DL. Think I'll seriously consider that in the summer.


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