PhD by publication

Discussion in 'General Distance Learning Discussions' started by muhammad_alhor, Sep 1, 2005.

  1. muhammad_alhor

    muhammad_alhor New Member

    Dear all,

    A friend of mine has several journal and conference publications and he is asking if he can get his PhD through "PhD by publication". So any one can help in answering the following Q's:

    1. Can you provide a short list of universities that award "PhD by publication" in the area of Computer Science
    2. Will the university put in the certificate/transcript that the degree is a PhD by publication or it will just mention "PhD"
    3. Is PhD by publication acceptable in the academic world (e.g. can you apply to a tenure track position using a PhD by publication)?
    4. What about the duration of the degree? what is the general procedure?

    Thank you in advance
  2. little fauss

    little fauss New Member

    Don't know the answer to al your questions, but you should check out Jonnie's Distance Learning page. Ask someone else for the URL, I can't recall right now. The PhD by publication is a euro phenom for the most part (at least the legitimate ones), and many of these schools require that you were either a Master's or Bachelor's student at that university or are currently among the faculty there.
  3. nosborne48

    nosborne48 Well-Known Member

    The thing DOES exist though it might not be a Ph.D; it might be some other doctorate.

    Seems to me that here in the U.S. this is, or was, the legitimate use of the honorary degree before it became a means of soliciting "contributions".
  4. marilynd

    marilynd New Member

    Jonnie's page is here. Look under "Research Doctorates." Your friend will have to do the leg work with regard to a CS specialty.

    Little fauss is right. Most of the PhD by publication options from legitimate schools require that you have some connection to the university: alumni, staff, etc.

    How this road to the degree is viewed will depend upon a number of factors: quality of the publications involved, the status of the individual in the professional community, etc. First off, it should be said that a legitimate PhD is a legitimate PhD, but some roads to the degree might be considered more valid than others. I can't speak to the rest of the world, but in the US, I suspect, a PhD granted on the basis of a few articles in scholarly periodicals, rather than a body of work conducted under faculty supervision, would automatically be open to question (not the degree as such, but the quality of the education which the degree represents). If it seemed that this route to the PhD was taken simply as an alternative to the longer, supervised study route that is more common, I suspect it would raise eyebrows. Evaluation of the total resume would then be especially important. Of course, if the person or the articles are recognized as especially meritorious, and a PhD were granted as a result, then that would change perceptions, but that would be an unusual instance.

    Aside from questions of how the degree is perceived, I suspect that your friend is going to have a rough time trying to follow this route. This is an option that tends to be used, I think, as a way of recognizing an accumulation of work over a large span of time. It is not intended in most places to be a quick alternative to a more common PhD program.

    Nevertheless, as many schools as there are out there, there may be one that is willing to accommodate this desire, but it may be a bit like locating Shangri-la.

    Meine zwei pfennige.

  5. nosborne48

    nosborne48 Well-Known Member


    So how do the so-called "higher doctorates" work? Aren't they usually awarded for publications?
  6. muhammad_alhor

    muhammad_alhor New Member

    Thank you all for your valuable feedbacks
  7. marilynd

    marilynd New Member

    Yes, but in UK systems, if I understand things correctly, they tend to be 1) due to the assessed quality of the work, 2) accumulated over a span of time; that is, given to mature scholars or at least particularly prolific or meritorious ones, and--this is the important factor--3) usually awarded to someone who already has earned a PhD or equivalent.

    "Higher doctorates" are earned honorifics, in the way we have been discussing them, as distinct perhaps--though some would undoubtedly disagree even with this distinction--from mere "honorary doctorates" (which may be higher or not or may be awarded for a body of academic work or not, as the case may be).

    Similarly, I think, most institutions use PhD by publication as an earned honorific, except that it is applied in the case of an individual who has not otherwise earned a doctorate.

    There are exceptions, of course, but I think that this is the general approach.

  8. marilynd

    marilynd New Member

    As a codicile to the above. In the US, the concept of "higher doctorate" has melded with the concept of honorary doctorate, such that almost all "higher doctorates" are given honoris causa (LLD, LittD, DHL, etc.). These, of course, are given for all sorts of reasons or all sorts of people, although I think giving money to the university--numerically speaking--is the least common of these. Civic leaders probably get the majority of honorary doctorates.

    The UK system still maintains a distinction between an earned higher doctorate and an honorary higher doctorate. An earned DSc would use the postnomial "DSc." An honorary degree of the same name would use the postnomial "DSc (hon.)" or some such.

    Those who know the UK system more intimately will correct any errors, I'm sure.

  9. laferney

    laferney Member

    Much has been written about this subject on other posts. Over the past year I have written to over 200 universities around the world in every English speaking country in Africa, ASia, Europe, Canada and Oceana and asked if they would being willing to accept 15 published articles along with a CAGS ( 30 additional credits beyond a Masters) in lieu of dissertation. None will. I sent published articles for their review and several universities stated the papers had established me as a person eliglble for doctoral work in their programs. But all want new work, a "supervised" dissertation or thesis. There are several universities that offer a Ph.d by published work for non-graduates or non-teachers at their universities. These include the U.Of Glamorgan, Middlesex U. in the U.K and Griffith in Australia. They require that a paper be written under the supervision of faculty once you make the case that your publications are of doctoral quality. This paper must tie all of your research into a "whole" and are of various length. The universities are not clear if a defense of thesis is required. Some do ,some don't. But they are not fast, cheap and as Dr. Draper notes in his paper there are alot of" hoops to jump through in this process"
    Some univerities answered my questions promptly -esp those in South Africa Africa, the Philliphines the UK and etc. Others as India did not. It is interesting since India universites now hire teachers who have a PHD or a "history of publications equal to a doctorate" but do not offer Ph.Ds by doctorates themselves.
    The University of Nigeria stated they would consider it but I received a letter from the chair of psychology stating they could not award an earned doctorate unless I was in residence but that I could petition the Chancellor for an "honorary degree"
    I contacted the Nigerian embassy who suggested it was a scam but were puzzled because no money was ever requested for it. I petitioned the Chancellor . It never came.
    It has been interesting corresponding with all these various universities around the world, I learned alot about different educational systems and cultures and that might be a paper I'll write at some point. But unless it is done under supervison, in a dissertation past registration in a faculty dept. I won't get a doctorate for it!
    I also wrote several Masters by Research programs and asked if
    I could use 3 papers written- scheduled to be published aver the next 4 months - in lieu of a master's thesis. Again the answer was no.
    So unless one is willing to do "new work in a supervised way'' a Degree by publication is almost impossible. (not totally -some have done it)
  10. muhammad_alhor

    muhammad_alhor New Member

    Thank you very much laferney for your wonderful post.

    Actually I have also done some search for my friend and I have found that the universities offering PhD by publications asked for so many things making the traditional PhD path easier.

    I think I will advice my friend to forget about this path.
  11. muhammad_alhor

    muhammad_alhor New Member

    Hi all,

    After reading laferney's post, I did some research on the Middlesex U and it seems that I found a good solution for my friend. Middlesex U has a international PhD were the applicant can do his work in his/her country and visit UK for 6 weeks/year and the fees is just approx. 1,500 USD. So it is a good deal. However, my friend asked me whether it is better to follow my example and continue his PhD from Pretoria or to go for Middlesex U?!

    So what is ur opinion? which one has a better reputation (in general and for Computer Science),

    University of Pretoria (SA) or Middlesex U (UK)?

    For me, sure I will say Pretoria

    Your feedbacks are highly appreciated.
    Last edited by a moderator: Sep 2, 2005
  12. warguns

    warguns Member

  13. engadnan

    engadnan Member

    1,500 USD? Would you mind sharing the source of this?
  14. SteveFoerster

    SteveFoerster Resident Gadfly Staff Member

    That was fifteen years ago, so it's unlikely you'll get a reply.
    engadnan likes this.
  15. engadnan

    engadnan Member

    Oh ... i didn't notice that. A 15-year-old post ... Ah ...
    SteveFoerster likes this.
  16. SteveFoerster

    SteveFoerster Resident Gadfly Staff Member

    It took me a second too. It was strange how Warguns swooped in out of the blue to crap on Middlesex U., but I suppose he's not wrong.
  17. Neuhaus

    Neuhaus Well-Known Member

    To think...when this post was first being discussed there were babies being born. And those babies are, today, obnoxious teenagers.
  18. chrisjm18

    chrisjm18 Well-Known Member

    Don't be disrespecting all Gen Zs, boomer! hahaha!
  19. Neuhaus

    Neuhaus Well-Known Member

    I'm about 20 years off from even being in the running for being a boomer.
  20. chrisjm18

    chrisjm18 Well-Known Member

    I guess you're a millennial like me. :D


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