PhD in Middle Age?

Discussion in 'General Distance Learning Discussions' started by shar, Dec 18, 2004.

  1. JLV

    JLV Active Member

    When I first read the title of this thread I though that someone was looking for a PhD specializing in Middle Ages (History). :( Nevertheless the discussion headed in this direction. It turns out that some of our current PhD students (dinosaurs) were actually born in the Middle Ages..... :D

    Now seriously, I think most people would get the most out of the PhD experience when they have reached certain intellectual maturity that in most cases takes place precisely when people reach that critical age. I don’t hold a PhD but I think I would get the most out of this experience now that I am 36 than back when I was 24 - 26.

    On top of that I think nowadays continuing education is key in this quickly changing world. What was taught in schools and universities 20 years ago often no longer applies or is no longer valid. I guess in business degrees this may be the norm...... Besides, the US Government seems to encourage its citizens to pursue (advanced) university degrees no matter how old the individuals are. When I was a student in the US (on campus) the ones who contributed the most to our classes discussions were actually older students returning to update their knowledge or getting their first degree. Where I live, governments think that by age 23 (when students finish their university education) you already KNOW EVERYTHING which I think it is simply preposterous. They don’t try to get students back in the classrooms after that age; there are almost not evening or weekend classes, and are very few options to pursue advanced degrees (in some fields like engineering it is just impossible). I guess this is one of the main reasons why the US is 10-20 years more advanced than the rest of the world.

    What I am trying to say is go for whatever educational goal you wish to pursue without rationalizing too much your decisions. Who cares about your age or cost/benefits analysis when many of those are simply intangible? After all, a PhD would provide you not only with an excellent education that will help you enormously to become an authority in a specific field but also will probably open unexpected ways for you to understand how to be a better individual, how to know yourself much deeply, how to get the best out of yourself and around you which is why we are here in the first place. I think (as a non holder) that a PhD is one of those things in which the process is probably way more important than the goal itself. Go for it. ;)
  2. Rich Douglas

    Rich Douglas Well-Known Member

    A minor note: when I entered Union the first time, I was just 26. When I re-entered I was 42. I really understood it all much more clearly the second time around. I think nontraditional programs are much more suited to experienced people.
  3. shar

    shar New Member

    Thanks JLV. You have made me laugh so many times over your "misinterpretation" of my heading. I appreciate your comments about going for it. I am moving closer to starting a PhD program, but am undecided which one is best for me. I just hope I can make the best choice based on the information I have. I have tried searching past posts for different choices and have been relatively unsuccessful on this forum. I am still looking at google, etc and hope that the best option for me will eventually become clear.

    Happy New Year all.
  4. Ultimale

    Ultimale New Member

    I'm going to get my PhD so that......

    I can't speak for the others on here, but I'm going to get my PhD so mother-in-law, sister and wife have to call me Doctor!

    The annoyance factor alone is worth the expense and effort!
  5. Messagewriter

    Messagewriter New Member

    Shar's choice of business PhDs

    If you pm me with an email address, I'll send you an excel spreadsheet that I used to evaluate the business doctoral programs.
  6. shar

    shar New Member

    Re: I'm going to get my PhD so that......

    My husband calls me 'B' as a "joke?" He says if I get my PhD, then he can officially call me Doc B. Not sure if that should make me proud or ??? But like I told him it doesnt mean we canstart playing Dr.
  7. shar

    shar New Member

    Re: Shar's choice of business PhDs

    Done. Thanks.
  8. Bill Huffman

    Bill Huffman Well-Known Member

    When I first saw the thread I thought that it was about higher education in the middle ages. I must admit that I was terribly dissappointed to discover that I was mistaken. Back in the middle ages, I think that most higher education activities involved religous related studies. I'm not a religious sort so I'm most interested in the secular aspects. There seems to be little information available on this subject.
  9. shar

    shar New Member

    Middle ages

    Bill, my limited knowledge of the middle ages makes me think of over indulgence rather than religion. But I agree, there is limited info whether secular or religious. I think of religious more as renaissance, and middle ages as "anything goes", sorta like now when you think about it. :D
  10. Ted Heiks

    Ted Heiks Moderator and Distinguished Senior Member

    PhD in Middle Age? Well, there are two ways to answer this.
    The Ann Landers/Dear Abby answer would be, And how old will you be in five years if you don't get your PhD? The MBA's answer would be to run a cost-benefit analysis. What is your income potential without your PhD? What is your income potential with your PhD, less the cost of acquiring same? Of course, as a broken-down geriatric of 43, I often wish that I had finished my master's degree at 25 (I was actually 31) and a PhD at 29 (I don't have one - yet), simply because the income stream from a 36-year career as a professor has a greater present value than the income stream from a possibly 15-to-20-year career as a professor. However, all the coulda, shoulda, wouldas of our lives should be treated as water under the bridge - sunk costs, if you will - and go on from there, resolved not to waste what years or decades of our lives remain. Of course, neither you nor I can go back and become PhDs as young men. This does leave us three options: (1) PhD in Middle Age? or (2) PhD in Antiquity? or (3) No PhD at all? Good luck!
  11. P. Kristian Mose

    P. Kristian Mose New Member

    John, perhaps I am not the only one curious to know whether your wife's doctorate involved some form of Vanderbilt U distance education. Or did you two (or she) really spend several years in Nashville, TN just so that she could pursue a love of learning for learning's sake in middle age?

    Inquiring minds wish to know....
  12. obecve

    obecve New Member

    I started my doc at 38. Yes it helped for work, but I don't think that would have been enough. I think doing an academic doc has to be more important than employment. I think it has to be about something inside you that meets a particular need or goal. I know many people who I went to school with that did not even start their docs until they were in their 50's. The ones who fisnished thought it was worth it regardless of employment results. The doc has to be about something inside you, not about the cash pay out from work.
  13. Tireman4

    Tireman4 member

    AMEN!!!!!!!!!!! It has to be inside of you. I am 40 and still want it so bad I can taste it. It has to burn and never grow cold. You have to wake up with it and go to sleep with it. Ok I will ease up now
  14. uncle janko

    uncle janko member

    Hell, I thought it was arthritis. You mean I could get a PhD for this???
  15. Tireman4

    Tireman4 member

    Absolutely Unk. By the way, there is a great show that I have started to watch...very good...House on Fox at 8pm Central. Kinda like CSI for never know what is wrong with the patient until the last. It is growing on me. Sorry....I dont think they have a cure for PhD
  16. Squirrel

    Squirrel New Member

    Glad to hear from another 40-something MBA that has decided to go for a doctorate. I just joined the forum last month, and at age 45, am considering a DBA. My MBA alma mater, UNC - Charlotte, will begin offering PhD's (no DBA) in 2006, but they will be geared toward full-time students. That won't help me much, but we'll see what happens.

    I know folks that have studied by DL, but I personally have not. I've been looking at some of the "psuedo DL" DBA programs, but I have not found one that is both affordable and "schedule-friendly". NSU looks very good, but the travel requirements are a hinderance for me. (search under Andy Borchers, Rich Douglas) I'm also waiting to see if any DL programs that are AACSB pop up. Another thing I have been concerned about is the perception in the market about DL degrees. The situation is improving, but I'm still reluctant to enroll in a DBA that is not AACSB (paranoia creeping in). I'm just exploring now though since $$$ is tight. My son starts college in two years, and his education is a greater priority. My two daughters are not far behind. You get the picture......

    Like you, my long-term objective is to maximize my options in the next 10 to 15 years. A DBA would certainly help, but I need to get a very clear picture of exactly what I would use the DBA for. I have envisioned private consulting in engineering management, but I'll have to see how things play out. I would recommend that you take plenty of time to decide. In this forum you will see mountains of useful information on DL. Feel free to explore this data using the search feature, as there are some very experienced and knowledgeable members of this forum to help you. Good luck.
  17. Revkag

    Revkag New Member

    Never too old!

    I am 47 and very serious about going for the P.hd, so I would have to agree that it is never too late to get going!

    I certainly hope that 47 is still middle age!
  18. shar

    shar New Member

    In my opinion 47 is still middle aged (cause I am).
  19. marilynd

    marilynd New Member

    Bill and shar:

    Actually, there is a wealth of material regarding studying in the middle ages. Start with Rashdall, The Universities in the Middle Ages, 3 vols. That ought to keep you up nights--perhaps well into middle age.


  20. GME

    GME New Member

    <<65 must not be really old cause >>

    Sixty-five is the 'new' 50.


    PS - I'm in Capella's PhD in Gen Psy program. At the residencies many (most?) of my peers seem to be in their 40s or so (although it must be noted, many seem to be already working in the mental health/academic field in one way or another).

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