What is the best PhD for an online adjunct?

Discussion in 'Online & DL Teaching' started by mdwolfsong, Aug 25, 2011.

  1. mdwolfsong

    mdwolfsong New Member

    Still spinning my wheels here; sorry if I am being annoying, but I need the advice before I commit to a program.

    So, I teach online. I teach psych classes, a career counseling class and a gen ed class. I love teaching online! I like the interaction with the students, being able to help them believe in themselves and not give up; all of that. The thing is, I am spread thin between 4 schools because I am a Master's level instructor and I need a PhD to become a full timer. Two of the schools that I work for have full time positions, but you need the PhD. So, my question (and sorry if I am repeating myself from old posts) is, which PhD program would be a good one for me. My Masters is in Gen Psych, but I am not a therapist. Before I taught online, I taught face-to-face ESL classes in Europe. I have a CAGS in Online Teaching. I also write poetry and fiction in my (limited) spare time. Should I get a PhD, and EDD, an MFA, etc...? The program I am looking for would idealistically be lower in price and not have any residencies required. Is it stupid to keep going in psych when I will never be a clinical psychologists or MFT? Suggestions?

    Thank you :)
  2. Kizmet

    Kizmet Moderator

    1) You need to decide if (a) you want a steady job or if (b) you want to do what you love.
    2) If (a) then act accordingly. If (b) then act accordingly.

    I know I'm being bitchy but I'm not wrong either. Getting a PhD is no guarantee of full-time employment (which is not to be confused with tenured professorship). By the time you get that PhD (5-6 years) those current jobs will be long gone. Plus, please be aware that online PhDs don't have the best rep in the academic world.
  3. mdwolfsong

    mdwolfsong New Member

    Thanks and I didn't take your response as bitchy. I asked for help and you are trying to help; that's cool. You make a good point that the jobs might not be here once I finish the PhD. I know that I want to continue on in online teaching at the online schools, not the traditional schools who shun online education/educators. At least I know that much; right?

    Thanks for the advice :)
  4. SteveFoerster

    SteveFoerster Resident Gadfly Staff Member

    You should do an EdD. After all, on the other thread we established they're the easiest. ;-)
  5. mdwolfsong

    mdwolfsong New Member

    That is something I have considered Steve. Do you know of any EdD programs without residencies and 100% online? Also, what do you think about the differentiation that happens with EdD degrees and PhD degrees? I have had professors at the doctoral level with PhDs and EdDs, so it is hard to say if there is a huge risk in going with the EdD. What do you think?

    Thanks :)
  6. Cyber

    Cyber New Member

    If you want to remain competitive in online teaching, a doctorate (some schools prefer PhD) is the way to go. While the hardest part of breaking into the world of online teaching is getting that first online teaching gig, making more money as an adjunct by way of increased or constant teaching assignments requires a doctorate degree. Why? Because you'll be competing to get teaching jobs that other doctoral degree holders are also vying for. Since you do not plan on becoming a clinical psychologist, the PhD in Psychology program at Grand Canyon University seems like a good fit (if Unisa doesn't work out) in terms of cost (it is cheaper than NCU), modality (100% online), and overall value (your degree will be from a B & M school with a long history of existence; it won't suffer the "internet degree" stigma).
  7. RFValve

    RFValve Well-Known Member

    If you want to teach, I believe a PhD in Education or EdD is a good option. You already have enough credits to teach psychology so the PhD in Education would be the most flexible degree you can get as you would be eligible to teach psychology and education.

    As few mentioned here, the issue is timing and credibility. I would avoid any for profit school for a doctorate and concentrate in the education doctorates offered by traditional schools that might have DL programs.

    I think the doctorate is must if you want to remain in education.
  8. mdwolfsong

    mdwolfsong New Member

    Thanks Cyber. Do you think it is a good ROI to pay around 38K for the GCU degree?
  9. Cyber

    Cyber New Member

    I think a GCU degree will have more value than a degree from schools with no physical campus (online-only schools). Also considering that GCU's PhD is 100% online with no added or hidden expense (e.g: the cost of attending Residencies), and the fact that the degree/school is cheaper than the cheapest online-only (NCU), the ROI is sure to be higher than equivalent alternatives. Even if you decide to pursue the EdD (plus costs of a few residencies), as suggested by others, the cost will still remain lower; hence, a higher ROI (cetera paribus).
  10. Shawn Ambrose

    Shawn Ambrose New Member

    Tough call here...

    There are strong arguments to be made on the EdD or PhD side of this equation. The question I would ask myself is what area is my preferred area to teach - and make the that the basis of the decision. In other words, if psych is your preference, the PhD is Psych will hold more utility than an EdD.

    You also stated that there are two schools with FT positions. Have you spoken with them: what degree would they prefer?

  11. mdwolfsong

    mdwolfsong New Member

    @ Shawn- One of the schools didn't care if the PhD was in Ed or Psych as they have many classes in each discipline. The other school mentioned that I could stay in the same department with the Psych degree.
  12. mdwolfsong

    mdwolfsong New Member

    @RFValve- Thank you for the input. What RA 100% Ed doctorates do you know of that are affordable?
  13. RFValve

    RFValve Well-Known Member

    check CGU
    Doctoral Degrees | Grand Canyon University

    Walden is for profit but also a decent alternative
  14. mdwolfsong

    mdwolfsong New Member

    Thanks, but both of those have residencies, which won't work for me.
  15. Anthony Pina

    Anthony Pina Active Member

    It is difficult to find a regionally accredited doctoral degree without any residencies at all. Regarding the Ph.D. in education versus the Ed.D., all of the comparison studies thus far had found little or no difference, except at a few universities (e.g. Vanderbilt) that offer both degrees.

    In general, it is most advantageous to get the doctorate in the area in which you wish to teach. There are many candidates with masters in the subject area and doctorates in education. The person with the doctorate in the subject area has a leg up on the competition. This is from the perspective of someone who hires and supervises university faculty.

    Of course, the degree is only one piece of the puzzle if you are looking for a full-time faculty postion. A person with peer-reviewed journal publications, presentations a national conferences, successful grant proposals, and a solid record of teaching experience, will beat out the candidate with nothing but an impressive looking Ph.D.
  16. mdwolfsong

    mdwolfsong New Member

    Thank you Dr. Pina for the advice :)
  17. RFValve

    RFValve Well-Known Member

    I would contact Walden anyways, they have some residencies but they are in the summer and many conducted during weekends in order to accommodate working professionals.

    A completely online doctorate is not very credible in my opinion, face to face meetings and seminars are required to follow up at the dissertation level. You also make contacts during the residencies with other students and faculty that are useful when presenting at conferences and looking for work after graduation.

    In any case, any credible doctorate would require you to attend and present at conferences so I think you cannot avoid traveling if you are looking for something credible.

    Some British and Australian doctorates do not require residencies but it is not very likely to get admission without any contact with a supervisor. I believe at least a couple of meetings would be required during your doctoral studies.
  18. teacher2000

    teacher2000 New Member

  19. jgaddy33688

    jgaddy33688 Member

    What courses can be taught with a PHD in organizational development? All classes are labeled ORG but the PsyD program at the same university also has the same course descriptions (ORG). I understand the 18 hour requirement in the subject area but wonder if the PHD allows for more courses.
  20. RFValve

    RFValve Well-Known Member

    Have you explored community college teaching? For this, all you need is a master. As for online adjunct teaching, I think that any RA PhD would work for this.
    I would select a PhD that is not that expensive and that has the area of specialization that I want.
    If you want a tenure track, you might need to explore a full time PhD at a B&M school. This not only because online PhD programs have low acceptance rates for this purpose but because most full time tenure track positions require experience in teaching at the University level, publication record, conference presentations, research grant writing experience, etc and this type of experience is not easy to get unless you are a full time PhD student.

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