Is there such a thing as a nationally accredited PHD?

Discussion in 'Accreditation Discussions (RA, DETC, state approva' started by Reca123, Nov 26, 2015.

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  1. Reca123

    Reca123 New Member

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    Hello,
    I'm sorry if this has been asked but searching "phd" in the search engine didn't come up with anything. Are there any nationally accredited PH.D's out there? I've been thinking of leaving my current college, Full Sail, and starting over at a regionally accredited college. I do have some regional credits so I wouldn't be starting completely over, but it would still add 2+ years until I could graduate.

    But, my dream is to get a PH.D. Is there any way to do that with a nationally accredited degree? Thanks.
     
  2. Messdiener

    Messdiener New Member

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    Although they are not PhD programs per se, Harrison Middleton University (a DETC/DEAC-accredited institution) does offer doctoral level programs. You can find their listings here.

    Surely, other such programs and degrees exist through other universities!
     
  3. Johann

    Johann Active Member

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    There are plenty of doctoral programs available at NA schools, but as far as I know, they're all professional doctorates - not PhDs. By that I mean Ed. D, DBA, D. Th. etc. Not saying that you can't get into some RA grad schools with a NA Bachelor's degree, but as far as I know, in the US, you're only going to earn a PhD - in any field - at an RA school.

    You probably have a ton of money invested in your Full Sail program - I know what the school costs - so I'm not giving you any advice re: abandoning or finishing what you've accomplished there. That's a decision of a very serious nature; I'm not nearly qualified to advise you on that. One option might be to finish the degree you started, then hopefully land a great job in your field after graduation and start pursuing grad school part-time, by Distance.

    Another approach might be, as Messdiener suggested, continue on, first to a master's then to a professional doctorate - not a PhD - at a Nationally accredited school. There are many, many such programs. Just a couple of thoughts - I don't know enough specifics in your case and don't feel qualified in any event.

    Experts, please jump in here....

    J.
     
    Last edited by a moderator: Nov 27, 2015
  4. RAM PhD

    RAM PhD New Member

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  5. Rich Douglas

    Rich Douglas Active Member

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    Typically--despite RAM PhD's example (nice one!)--the national accreditors limit their member schools to the professional doctorate.

    I agree with this practice for two reasons. First, national accreditors, typically, accredit schools with an occupational/professional bent. The PhD isn't consistent with that; the professional doctorate is. Second, the PhD is designed to prepare students to enter the academy. Professional doctorates do not. The focus of the PhD is on scholarship, while the professional doctorate focuses on practice.

    That said, you'll find many holders of the PhD in practice, and many holders of professional doctorates in academia. Go figure.

    Other examples of the PhD coming from strange places are schools accredited by the New York Board of Regents, which is recognized by the USDoE as an accreditor. The American Museum of Natural History is accredited by the Regents and awards its own PhDs. (It's called the Richard Gilder Graduate School, but the school is within the museum, not a university). Cold Spring Harbor Laboratory does this, as does the The Feinstein Institute for Medical Research, the Gerstner Sloan Kettering Graduate School of Biomedical Sciences, and The Rockefeller University.

    I doubt if accreditation type prevents graduates of these schools from teaching in academia.
     
  6. Johann

    Johann Active Member

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    Yes - they do indeed, RAM. As a heathen, it shows how much I (don't) know about the faith-based National Accreditors, like TRACS. Never thought of them!

    "Never been much on religion but I sure enough just fell down on my knees." (I'm Scared - Burton Cummings, 1975)

    J.
     
    Last edited by a moderator: Nov 27, 2015
  7. Neuhaus

    Neuhaus Active Member

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    The New York Board of Regents accredits three PhD programs, one at the Rockefeller University, an art related phD at Christies and the other at Memorial Sloane Kettering.

    NYS BOR is certainly not a regional accreditor. Nor are they a faith based accreditor. But, technically, they aren't national accreditors either as they only accredit programs in NYS.

    So, I know we like to drop everything into buckets of either NA or RA (and that works great for DEAC and ACICS) there's a bit more to it than that.
     
  8. Johann

    Johann Active Member

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    Possibly. But really, NYBOR accreditation is distinct from institutional accreditation - and that's what we were talking about, weren't we?

    Regents Institutional Accreditation

    J.
     
  9. Neuhaus

    Neuhaus Active Member

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    NYBOR is institutional accreditation. They are a USDOE recognized accreditor and schools like Rockefeller are only accredited by NYBOR.
     
  10. Johann

    Johann Active Member

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    As always, Neuhaus, you're right. And I'm wrong - yet again. I misread the following sentence:

    "This mandatory State approval process is distinct from "institutional accreditation" and the accreditation function of the Board of Regents."

    In my haste, I took it to mean that accreditation by NYBOR is distinct from "institutional accreditation." Not so at all. My apologies.

    J.
     
  11. RAM PhD

    RAM PhD New Member

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    I agree with Rich's assessment that professional doctorates have typically been the focus of nationally accredited institutions. I also agree with this practice for the reasons Rich enumerates, as well as others. That said, as cited above, there are indeed a few exceptions. And since there are, it would be interesting to know the utility of an NA PhD in comparison with a PhD that is both RA and NA, and with a PhD that is RA only. For example: 1) the level of acceptance of an NA PhD at an RA school; or 2) the number of PhD's (NA only) serving as either a diss advisor or diss committee member for a student earning an RA PhD.
     
  12. Neuhaus

    Neuhaus Active Member

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    Not a problem. It gets confusing because NYBOR is the same body that "registers" programs in the state (state approval for degree programs). And it's definitely a unique accreditation scheme.
     
  13. heirophant

    heirophant Member

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    I agree with Rich's post.

    Another thing to connsider is that when it comes to PhDs, the research reputation (in the subject of the degree) of the school that awarded the degree is typically going to be more important to prospective employers than the school's accreditation. The exception to that statement will be regulated professions where particular accreditations are required in order to obtain a license.

    That's why NY Regents accreditation doesn't typically present a problem. Rockefeller University and Cold Spring Harbor have produced Nobel prize winners. The American Museum of Natural History, Sloan Kettering and Christies speak for themselves. Employers familiar with their own discipline will already be familiar with these institutions and with their reputations.

    The question for DEAC and ACICS is whether the same is true of any of their doctorate granting schools.
     
  14. Rich Douglas

    Rich Douglas Active Member

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    Well, no one is quicker to criticize misplaced support for NA than me, but let me argue the alternative. RA schools churn out thousands of doctorates each year, and almost none of them go on to any acclaim. NA schools produce doctorates for practitioners--ones already in their careers to boot. I wouldn't expect them to be hotbeds for acclaim, either. That's not their audience, and other measures to these schools can be reasonably applied.

    There, now let me once again explain the lowered acceptability of NA....:smile:
     
  15. jumbodog

    jumbodog New Member

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    I can't believe we are still having this discussion.

    There is no such thing as a nationally accredited degree. The only thing that are accredited are either institutions or programs.

    This distinction is not a technicality. No institution can force another institution to recognize any degree or any person holding a degree. That is the way academia works.
     
  16. Rich Douglas

    Rich Douglas Active Member

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    You're describing a distinction without a difference. Who cares? The language you decry is merely a shortcut used by people typing posts on this board. We all know what they mean--and what you mean. For the purposes of this board, it is very much a technicality.
     

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