Texas Tech University

Doctor of Philosophy in Higher Education (Ph.D.)

Fast Facts

  • Delivery: Online
  • Hours to Completion: 60
  • Maximum Transfer Hours: 30

Texas Tech's Higher Education program is committed to preparing students for roles in teaching, research and engagement in higher education contexts. Students and alumni have utilized the skills, knowledge and application acquired through their doctoral program to positively impact higher education institutions across the globe. The Higher Education faculty are committed to investing in our students' success while they are enrolled as well as after they graduate.

The Ph.D. in Higher Education has been approved by the Texas Higher Education Coordinating Board and is taught fully online. Please contact Pam Smith at pam.smith@ttu.edu for application requirements. Qualified applicants should have a master's degree in a related field, research foundation coursework, and experience in higher education organizations.

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Higher Education Administration & Leadership Certificate M.Ed. in Higher Education Administration (Online) M.Ed. in Higher Education Administration Ph.D. in Higher Education (Online)
Introduction to higher education administration and leadership Prepares graduates to lead in higher education organizations Prepares graduates to lead in higher education organizations Prepares graduates for executive leadership roles in higher education and to conduct research
Online/Face to Face
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Designed for full-time professionals or current graduate students at TTU Designed for full-time professionals seeking graduate degree Designed for Graduate Assistants and working professionals Designed for full-time professionals, but limited Research Assistantships are available for potential full-time students
An internship or field experience is NOT required for the certificate Internship is required Internship is required Practical experiences in research and scholarly communication
No Final Project Capstone Project Capstone Project or Thesis Dissertation

How does this degree advance my career?
Graduates of the Ph.D. in Higher Education program will lead the identification, analysis, evaluation and application of critical research that addresses higher education issues related to multiple and diverse populations and a variety of sociocultural contexts domestically and internationally. The program develops skills for those seeking career advancement in both administrative and faculty tracks. 

For those students interested in Research Assistantships, please contact Dr. Jon McNaughtan at jon.mcnaughtan@ttu.edu. Research Assistants are offered a generous financial package that will cover tuition and most fees. To be selected as a Research Assistant, a student must be willing to live in Lubbock and work 20 hours a week with a faculty mentor.

How is the program delivered?
The Ph.D. program is delivered through hybrid, intensive, and online coursework.

The doctoral curriculum is comprised of five elements: (I) Foundations Core, (II) Statistics and Research Core, (III) Higher Education Core, (IV) Research Electives; (V) Higher Education Electives, (VI) Capstone and Qualifying Exam, and (VII) Doctoral Dissertation.

We will still offer on campus assistantships for selected students and they should submit their applications by the deadline of January 15th if they wish to be considered for all institutional financial aid opportunities.

Trademark Outcomes
The trademark outcome of the Ph.D. in Higher Education are graduates with exceptional skills in inquiry. Graduates will demonstrate the research skills and the creative modes of thinking that enable them to act as scholarly reformers who advance the field.

The distinctive student learning outcomes expected of our Ph.D. graduates are:

  • Compare and contrast the social, cultural, and economic roles of higher education in U.S. and international contexts.
  • Analyze policies to understand impacts on higher education and its various constituents.
  • Utilize the findings of critical inquiries to propose alternative policies, practices, and strategies for higher education.
  • Lead research utilizing various methodologies and types of data appropriate for higher education subject matter.
  • Lead higher education change management strategies.

Transfer Policy
Transfer credit from another university will be evaluated and awarded in accordance with the guidelines established by the Graduate School. In no case can transfer credit reduce the minimum residency requirement. The majority of students are given a thirty-hour block transfer for the completion of a master's degree. However, students and their faculty advisors should assess whether transfer or course replacement credit may be awarded for any of the Ph.D. curricular requirements. Courses with a letter grade other than A or B cannot be counted for transfer credit (including Pass/Fail).

Tuition and Fees
Information on Tuition and Fees can be found by visiting the Student Business Services webpage.