Will the Nova DBA provide an ROI over all other DL doctorates?

Discussion in 'General Distance Learning Discussions' started by slb1957, Jul 2, 2007.

  1. slb1957

    slb1957 New Member

    I teach at Walden, and with the tuition discount, I come in around the same price as NCU. My goal is to transition into teaching full time in 5 years or so. My field is international business.

    I am trying to determine if the Nova DBA, which is around 25k or so more expensive, is worth it in terms of helping me to a) meet my goal b) have a higher salary because I will be able to teach at a better school.

    I can handle the onsite visits, so that is not a factor.

    Any advice on this matter would be greatly appreciated?


  2. Rich Douglas

    Rich Douglas Well-Known Member

    I cannot imagine the formula necessary to measure this.

    You're talking about the future utility of the degree itself, not the quality of the education you'll receive. I suspect that, except for small circles where someone has heard of both schools, there will be little difference in the utility of the two credentials.

    One thing to consider is the nature of the doctoral communities the two schools operate. I suspect you'll find NSU to be much more interactive in terms of contacts with peers and faculty. That might be more valuable than almost anything else when it comes time to put your credential to work.

    Networking while still a doctoral student is a good way to make your degree work for you after graduation. Which program will foster greater opportunities to network? (Or is that even valuable to you?)
  3. Ted Heiks

    Ted Heiks Moderator and Distinguished Senior Member Staff Member

    To answer this question, you would need to know: (a) tuition for Nova; (b) present value of future cash flows from position attributable to the Nova doctorate; (c) tuition for other doctoral programs; and (d) present value of future cash flows from position attributable to other potential doctoral alma maters. Do the math.
  4. macattack

    macattack New Member

    I think both schools have similar utility upon graduation, however, my limited research is indicating that Nova is more well known and respected than the other non-traditional universities, Walden included.

    Check over here and see what traditional graduates and current university faculty are saying about these schools. Also, ask universities that your interested in teaching. I checked with a local AACSB university that I wouldn't mind teaching at and low and behold, they have a Nova grad! They said it could be done, especially in my field.

    Call Nova and ask to talk to a current students and a graduate, they did it for me. Also, ask Nova if they can furnish any employment statistics.

    Do a google search and find graduates there that are faculty at schools you may want to teach and contact them regarding job prospects and salaries upon graduation.

    You can't calculate an ROI, because you don't know all the variables. You're not furnished with salary statistics like MBA programs. But I don't think your asking for help with your math.

    Good luck on this tough decision and let us know what you find out! (my personal vote - Nova) :)
  5. carlosb

    carlosb New Member

    This person did pretty well for themselves with a Nova DBA at AACSB schools:


    National leader in entrepreneurial education to direct center at IU's Kelley School of Business.

  6. Randell1234

    Randell1234 Moderator Staff Member

    This does not surprise me at all. The quesitons is: did he earn an on campus DBA or DL DBA. Nova is a strong school and should never have a problem with exceptance.
  7. Andy Borchers

    Andy Borchers New Member

    Sam - As a grad of NSU, I'm all in favor of their program. As others have pointed out, NSU has had more exposure than many of the other DL schools. This is good on one hand - and sometimes bad as people may have a pre-conceived notion about NSU.

    As for calculating the ROI (or I'd suggest NPV), there are some challenges. What's your discount rate? Also, the cash flows are pretty uncertain - how much would you have made if you stayed put in industry? You'll probably never know.

    NSU worked well for me. I'm big on residency - I only wish I could have had more than the 73 days or so I had at NSU. Besides the dollar return - which has been significantly positive, I have a much higher level of satisfaction with my life.

    Another point - the degree program you pursue is only part of the equation. What else do you have to offer a prospective employer? Do you have any teaching or industry experience? What about research?

    A degree by itself won't buy you a cup of coffee.

    Regards - Andy

  8. Ted Heiks

    Ted Heiks Moderator and Distinguished Senior Member Staff Member

    In other words, non-discounted doctoral tuition at NCU is about $25,000, and doctoral tuition at Walden with the employee discount is likewise about $25,000. Since doctoral tuition at Nova is $25,000 more expensive, that means we're talking about $50,000, or twice the price. Since future cash flows are uncertain, as there is no guarantee that a doctorate will necessarily lead to a professorship, you need to measure both your expected future salaries with doctorates from Nova as compared to Walden or NCU and the likelihood of even obtaining said professorship. Thus, you need to figure whether: (a) the Nova doctorate makes one twice as likely to obtain a professorship as the Walden or NCU doctorate or (b) the professorship obtained with a Nova doctorate pays twice as much as the professorship obtained with the Walden or NCU doctorate.
  9. Dave Wagner

    Dave Wagner Active Member

    This was interesting but I think one can't make this decision based on tuition and fees alone, as I have said before. The focus and reputation of the doctoral program are more important. Nova has a DIBA that should be perfect for you, and there are many Nova graduates in higher education already. Walden has some reputation. NCU has almost no reputation and it's newness is going to work against graduates for awhile. I say spend more for the Nova program, since you are already in higher education, presuming that you can handle residencies and get published to finish the degree.

  10. DRMarion

    DRMarion New Member

    My $.02....

    I suppose that traditional universities will take a long time to really accept distance learning grads. But on the other hand, if you want to make a living in academic work, full time--it is certainly possible to do so without ever setting foot in a traditional university.

    Example: After years in the business world as an executive, I earned my degrees via distance learning from the ground up, and capped it off with a Capella Ph.D.

    Now, I am Program Chair for the School of Electronics Technology at ITT Tech--less than 5 miles from where I live. Also, I teach adjunct at:

    Franklin University
    Argosy University
    Axia & UoP
    Columbia Southern
    Strayer University
    DeVry University
    Touro University International

    I work as much as I want, and I make a decent living at it. In my world, no one ever questioned my Capella Ph.D. It irrelevant since it is regionally accredited.

    Will the traditional Universities every accept me? Maybe not. My feeling about this, "Soo Whaat!"
  11. edowave

    edowave Active Member

    Dr. Marion,

    How far along are you on finishing the Heriot-Watt DBA? Would love to hear your experiences with the program and how it compares to the Capella PhD program. My impression is that the business research modules give some good guidance for completing the dissertation portion, but that is just a guess. There is almost zero discussion about it on the watercooler.
  12. DRMarion

    DRMarion New Member

    Heriot-Watt update


    I have taken 6 of the exams, and would have taken the remaining 5 had I not been in the middle of a job change. Right now I am in a holding pattern--I may finish up the exams in December.

    I think the courses are excellent--the "strategy implementation" angle really gives some additional structure to the program. The research courses are well done--I do not see much new from my Capella dissertation experience, but they do add some additional theoretical background.

  13. dl_mba

    dl_mba Member


    How long did it take to complete your PhD with Capella. I am actually in my initial discussions with them. How do you recommend the school and PhD?


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