Online Doctoral Programs

Online Doctoral Programs

Our list of top 25 schools offering online doctoral programs is a ranking that takes into account accreditation, general reputation, professional rankings, and non-profit/for-profit status. Some of the programs offer entirely online programs while others utilize a hybrid model with various levels of residency.

Most of the institutions in the top 25 list are ranked either among national schools or among regional schools. All schools are accredited, non-profit, and have at least a certain level of name recognition.

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All information in the descriptions is researched and incorporated with as much care as possible. All readers who are looking into an online Ph.D. program should always check the university or college information on the official site before paying fees for applications or taking any other actions. It should also be noted that institutions can change their tuition or fees at their own discretion and, therefore, may be different than what is listed here after a time.

1. JOHNS HOPKINS UNIVERSITY

Topping the list for a second year in a row is Johns Hopkins University. This prestigious institution continues to lead in online learning at the doctoral level with the Doctor of Education program online. U.S. News and World Report ranks Johns Hopkins school of education at #6 in the nation while QS World Rankings places the education program at #24 in the world. The program attempts to take part in the changing landscape of online education and to provide a prestigious alternative to the rise of for-profit education. The program is centered on training leader scholars for improving school environments and leading in evidence-based policy for education both nationally and internationally. U.S. News and World Report places Johns Hopkins University at #10 in the nation while QS World Rankings places the institution at #12 in the world. These rankings place the university among the most elite, not only in the nation but across the globe.

The Doctor of Education program is 90 credit hours in length and students must enter the program with a Master’s degree that contains at least 36 units. These units are then transferred into the program. If the applicant has fewer units, then admittance will be had on a conditional basis. Six units at the doctoral level can be transferred. Students must complete between 48 and 54 units with the program at Johns Hopkins University. There are four concentrations in the program. The first has changing emphasis, depending on the year the student joins the program. In 2017 the Educational Contexts and Leadership concentration had Entrepreneurial Leadership in Education as a focus. The other three concentrations are Mind, Brain, and Teaching; Technology Integration in K-12 Education; and Counseling. Tuition is $1,464 per credit hour, which places the full 90 units at $131,760.

Johns Hopkins University is accredited by the Middle States Commission on Higher Learning and the Maryland Higher Education Commission.

2. UNIVERSITY OF SOUTHERN CALIFORNIA

The University of Southern California also remains a top contender on our list for the second year in a row. The university is a private institution founded in 1880. It is an urban school setting on 226 acres in Los Angeles, California. The prestigious university provides a Doctor of Education in Organizational Change and Leadership online. The program is designed to last three years, culminating in a dissertation. U.S. News and World Report ranks USC’s education school at #15 in the nation. Most of the curriculum is delivered online with one emersion weekend to be attended per year on the University of Southern California campus. The program expects that students will be in current careers and the online delivery is meant to facilitate progress in their doctorate while they continue to work. U.S. News and World Report ranks the institution at #23 nationally and QS World Ranking places USC at #136 internationally.

The Doctor of Education program is a 60-unit program. Students who already hold a master’s degree will be admitted with advanced standing and must take 43 units. If a master’s degree has not been completed but the student has substantial leadership and work experience, the student will have to complete the full 60 units at USC. The program costs $1,733 per credit hour with advanced standing students paying $74,519 for the program and those without advanced standing paying $103,980. The immersion weekends are not included in the tuition fees and cost $550 not including travel and hotel expenses.

The University of Southern California is accredited by the Western Association of Schools and Colleges. The USC Rossier School of Education is accredited by the Council for the Accreditation of Educator Preparation (CAEP). This is the nation’s only accreditor for teacher education.

3. UNIVERSITY OF NORTH CAROLINA, CHAPEL HILL

The University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill is the first public school on the list. Among its peer schools, it stands on top of the list due to the academic reputation. UNC Chapel Hill was founded in 1789 and U.S. News and World Report ranks it #5 among top public schools nationally. Further, US News and World Report ranks UNC Chapel Hill at #30 nationally while QS World Ranking ranks the university at #78 internationally. UNC Chapel Hill offers a Doctor of Physical Therapy as a distance program, allowing therapists to continue their practice while pursuing their degree. The program primarily focuses on clinical competence and expertise. There are four specialist areas within the program: orthopaedics, neurology, pediatrics, and geriatrics. Candidates are expected to continue in their practice, pursue teaching roles, and serve in policy-making and leadership positions.

The Doctor of Physical Therapy degree requires 30 credit hours beyond the professional entry-level degree. There are three components to the degree: a Clinical Foundation Core, a Clinical Practice Core, and a Specialty Practice Core. The program is about two years long with four semesters and a summer. The School of Education boasts 40 full-time faculty members. Students take 6-8 credit hours per semester. Tuition for in-state students is $761.42 per credit hour and tuition for out of state students is $1604.42 per credit hour. The total for the program, with fees, is estimated to be $22,081 for in-state students and $46,528 for out of state students.

The University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill is accredited by the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges. The Department of Physical Therapy is accredited by the American Physical Therapy Association, Commission on Accreditation in Physical Therapy Education.

4. NORTHEASTERN UNIVERSITY

Northeastern University is a private institution that was founded in 1898 and is currently housed on a 73-acre campus in Boston Massachusetts. The researched centered campus receives hefty grants from the National Science Foundation and the National Institutes of Health, as well as the Departments of Homeland Security, Energy, and Defense. Graduate students, as well as undergraduates, present projects in the annual Research, Innovation, and Scholarship Expo. Northeastern University offers an online Traditional Doctor of Physical Therapy. U.S. News and World Report ranks Northeastern University as the #7 most innovative school in the nation, ranks the institution at #39 nationally, and #40 for their physical therapy program. The program is 100% online since it is designed for practicing physical therapists.

The transitional Doctor of Physical Therapy has a variety of concentration areas such as orthopaedics, pediatrics, geriatrics, advanced nutrition, women’s health, education, and business management. If students want to pursue a unique concentration outside of the pre-approved topics, then a directed study can be arranged. The program is also done in quarters rather than semesters. Therefore, the program is 26 quarter hours if one enters with a terminal master’s degree or 35 quarter hours if one enters with a bachelor’s degree. Tuition is $646 per quarter hour with the program costing up to $16,796 for the total program.

By the year 2020, the American Physical Therapy Association predicts that the clinical Doctor of Physical Therapy will become the terminal degree for the profession. The program is for individuals who are licensed in the United States, which means that the student must have an equivalent of a master’s degree in physical therapy from an accredited institution in the U.S. Northeastern University is accredited by the New England of Association of Schools and Colleges and the Physical Therapy program is accredited by the Commission on Accreditation of Physical Therapy Education.

5. UNIVERSITY OF FLORIDA

The University of Florida offers a number of online doctoral degrees through their distance learning department. They offer doctorates in Audiology, Classical Civilization, Education, Educational Leadership, Educational Technology, Higher Education Administration, Latin and Roman Studies, Nursing Practice, and Pharmacy. The University of Florida is our second public institution on the list and it was founded in 1853. U.S. News and World Report ranks the University of Florida at #50 nationally, #1 in education schools in the nation, and #14 in top public schools.

The PhDs in Classical Civilization and Latin and roman Studies are 90 credit hours each beyond the bachelor’s degree. No more than 30 credit hours from an earned master’s degree may be transferred into the program, leaving at least 60 credit hours to be earned through the University of Florida program. An on-campus visit must be made before the application deadline. During the visit, the applicant takes a 90 minute Latin sight reading exam and has interviews with select faculty. Tuition is $544.56 per credit hour. The Audology PhD is 45 credit hours and can be completed at a distance. The degree, if one follows the track, can be completed in 18 months, taking one course at a time in the sequence.

The Doctor of Education programs are intended to prepare practicing educators to apply current research and practice to their own working contexts. It is not meant to be a research degree per se. The program is a 60 credit hour program at $448.73 per credit hour for Florida residents and $690.21 per credit hour for non-residents. The Doctor of Nursing practice degree requires a master’s degree in nursing and for the student to be a licensed nurse. The program focuses on working professionals and advancing their knowledge of innovative and evidence-based practice. It is not a research degree. Tuition is $12,740 per year and $30,134 for out of state students.

The University of Florida is accredited by the Southern Association of colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges.

6. PENNSYLVANIA STATE UNIVERSITY

Pennsylvania State University is a public, land-grant institution that was founded in 1855. The university is located in University Park, Pennsylvania and sits on 8,556 acres. The Penn State Online programs offer a Doctor of Nursing Practice degree for practice-focused working professionals. Penn State has had nursing programs since 1964. The online graduate program hopes to update nursing knowledge for already working professionals in the field. The program has two entry points. If the student comes to the program with a Bachelor of Science in Nursing, then the program consists of 61 credit hours. If the student comes to the program with a Master of Science in Nursing, then the Doctor of Nursing Practice will be between 38-46 credit hours.

U.S. News and World Report ranks Pennsylvania State University at #50 nationally, tied with the University of Florida. Further, Penn State is ranked at #14 for top public schools and #20 for best nursing graduate schools. The online Doctor of Nursing Practice was designed by the American Association of Colleges of Nursing and focuses on translating research into practice, transformational leadership, and advanced nursing practice. While most of the program is delivered online, students are required to attend three to four intensive session including orientation.

Tuition for the Doctor of Nursing program is $821 per credit hour. Those entering without a master’s degree will therefore pay about $50,081 in tuition for the degree while those with a master’s degree will pay between $31,198 and $37,766 for the degree. The Penn State College of Nursing is approved by the Pennsylvania State Board of Nursing. The Doctor of Nursing program is accredited by the Commission on Collegiate Nursing Education.

Pennsylvania State University is accredited by the Middle States Commission on Higher Education.

7. GEORGE WASHINGTON UNIVERSITY

George Washington University is a private institution that was founded in 1821. The university is in Washington, DC on 43 acres. The online doctorates that are provided are in the areas of Nursing and Engineering. In the area of Nursing, George Washington University provides doctorates in the areas of Adult-Gerontology Primary Care Nurse Practitioner, Executive Leadership, Family Nurse Practitioner, Health Care Quality, Nursing Education, Nursing Practice, and Palliative Care Specialty for Nurse Practitioner. In the area of Engineering, the university provides a Doctor of Engineering in Engineering Management, Doctor of Philosophy in Engineering Management, and a Doctor of Philosophy in Systems Engineering.

U.S. News and World Report ranks George Washington University at #56 nationally, the engineering school at #89 nationally, and the doctor of nursing practice program at #26 nationally. Further, U.S. News and World Report ranks the online graduate nursing program at #26 nationally and the online graduate engineering program #55 nationally. The Engineering program consists of both a practical based degree (Doctor of Engineering) as well as research based degrees (both doctor of philosophy programs). The multitude of Nursing concentrations are targeted at working professionals to apply evidence based practice in places of work.

Tuition for the Doctor of Engineering is $1,790 per credit hour while the Doctor of Philosophy degrees in Engineering are $1,275 per credit hour. In the Nursing programs, all graduate programs are $1,295 beginning in the fall of 2017. The tuition rates do not include the various fees one might encounter at the university. Online instruction and research meetings are scheduled on Saturdays to facilitate participation by working adults. Class times are also recorded so that the student can view them at their leisure if the live timing is not accommodating. The Engineering programs are 45 credit hours long while the Nursing graduate programs are 81 credit hours in length plus clinical hours.

George Washington University is accredited by the Middle States Commission on Higher Education.

8. CLEMSON UNIVERSITY

Clemson University is a public institution founded in 1889. The university is located in Clemson, South Carolina on 17,000 acres. The selection of online doctorates at Clemson University are unique and carve a niche for the online programs not seen at other universities. Clemson University provides doctoral programs in Parks, Recreation, and Tourism Management – Recreational Therapy; Rhetorics, Communication, and Information Design, and Healthcare Genetics.

The Parks, Recreation, and Tourism Management doctorate is a hybrid program with individualized mentoring; three, five-day, residencies to attended at Clemson’s campus, synchronous online instruction, and educational designs to meet student needs on an induvial basis. The central purpose of the program is to produce people who can train others to work in various recreational treatment environments since there is a lack of educators in this field. The program is 60 credit hours long. The Rhetorics, Communication, and Information Design doctorate is a research degree training students to do research, publish, and teach at the university level. Students do most work at a distance with the defense of exams and dissertation to be done on campus. The program is approximately 54 credit hours.

The final program in Healthcare Genetics is an interdisciplinary Ph.D. involving faculty from more than six disciplines. Core courses include Genetics, Healthcare Genetics, Psychology, Political Science, and Policy. There are three emphases in the program which include Interventionists, Translational Bench Science, and Ethics and Health Policy. The program is 70 credit hours long. Each program is $695 per credit hour. U.S. News and World Report ranks Clemson University at #66 nationally and #23 among top public schools.

Clemson University is accredited by the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges. The Parks, Recreation, and Tourism program is accredited by the National Recreation and Park Association.

9. TEXAS A&M UNIVERSITY

Texas A&M is a public institution that was founded in 1876. It is located in College Station, Texas on 5,200 acres. The online doctorates offered through Texas A&M are housed in the Department of Education and the Department of Agriculture. The two degrees are specifically a Doctor of Education in Curriculum and Instruction and a Doctor of Education in Agricultural Education.

U.S. News and World Report ranks Texas A&M University at #74 among national universities and #27 among top public schools in the nation. The university is also ranked at #72 for online graduate education programs in the nation and #38 among educations schools in the nation. All of the faculty teaching in the Education program are full-time Texas A&M faculty, providing a high-quality faculty for an online degree. The online doctorate prepares students to be leaders in P-12 and private education in order to direct curriculum production and instruction. The Education doctorate is 64 credit hours long beyond the master’s degree. Students must enter the program with a minimum of five years of teaching experience and an earned master’s degree.

The program in Agriculture is a joint program with Texas Tech with 29 faculty total from both institutions participating in the program. This is a first of its kind program approved by the Texas Higher Education Coordinating Board in 2000. Admission takes place on a two year, cohort cycle. The program utilizes a number of delivery tools such as Blackboard, WebEx, Skype, and Interactive Video Conferencing. There are occasional face-to-face meetings on campus and professional locations. Tuition is approximately $1060 per credit hour for in-state students and $1485 per credit hour for non-resident students. The tuition does not cover other expenses such as travel, educational materials, and necessary online connections to the internet.

Texas A&M is accredited by the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges and the American Society of Agricultural and Biological Engineers.Indiana University

10. INDIANA UNIVERSITY

Indiana University is the final school to round out our top 10 and is a top 100 public institution. It was founded in 1820 and is located in the beautifully wooded town of Bloomington, Indiana on 1,937 acres. Indiana University provides programs in the Doctor of Education with emphasis in Instructional Systems Technology and Literacy, Culture, and Language Education; Doctor of Nursing Practice, Doctor of Occupational Therapy Post-Professional, and a Doctor of Philosophy in Nursing Science.

U.S. News and World Report ranks Indiana University at #86 nationally and #36 among top public schools nationally. Further, they rank the university at #22 for best online graduate education programs nationally and #32 among best education schools nationally. The Instructional System Technology doctorate is a 60-credit hour degree program. An earned master’s degree must be obtained before applying. The Literacy, Culture, and Language Education doctorate is also 60 credit hours long. There is one on campus conference every student must attend during one spring semester. Residents pay $489.85 per credit hour and non-residents pay $574.02 per credit hour.

The Doctor of Nursing Practice program is unique in that it is the only graduate organizational and systems leadership program that trains nurses to be big thinkers who want to rebuild healthcare and healthcare education. Post Master of Nursing, the program is 37 credit hours long. The program is $503.46 per credit hour. The Occupational Therapy doctorate is 30 credit hours over three semesters ending in a summer session. Students must be on campus for one-day meetings at the beginning and ending of every semester. Tuition for the program is $523.11 per credit hour. The Ph.D. in Nursing Science is a 90-credit hour program of which 30 credit hours can come from a master’s degree. The program costs $503.46 per credit hour.

Indiana University is accredited by the Higher Learning Commission.

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11. UNIVERSITY AT BUFFALO – SUNY

University at Buffalo -SUNY is a public institution that was founded in 1846. The university is located in Buffalo, New York on 1,350 acres. University of Buffalo – SUNY provides an online Doctor of Philosophy in Curriculum, Instruction, and the Science of Learning. The program is a multidisciplinary doctorate that focuses attention on practical education problems through research in diverse contexts. The university website notes that the uniqueness of the program lies, not in the Curriculum and Instruction, which is common among doctorates, but the inclusion and integration of the Science of Learning.

U.S. News and World Report ranks University at Buffalo – SUNY at #99 among national universities and #43 top public universities in the countries. They also rank as #10 among online graduate education programs and #80 among education schools in the nation. The Curriculum, Instruction, and the Science of Learning program is a 72 credit hour program with 10 being able to be filled with master’s level work. The program has identified a broad swath of research clusters including arts integration, early learning, educational informatic, educational technologies, integrated STEM, new and multimodal literacies, product design, special literacy, social learning and culture, real and virtual learning space, situated and embodied cognition, and others.

The program’s website also has a list of prerequisite technology skills necessary for entering the program. Many of them are basic but important for functioning in the distance program. Tuition for state residents is $619.46 per credit hour including fees while tuition for non-residents is $1,091.46 per credit hour including fees.

The University at Buffalo – The State University of New York is accredited by the Middle States Commission on Higher Education. The Graduate School of Education hold accreditation from the American Library Association, the Council on Rehabilitation Education, and the Teacher Education Accreditation Council.

12. LOYOLA UNIVERSITY CHICAGO

Loyola University Chicago is a Roman Catholic institution which was founded in 1870. The university is located in Chicago, Illinois on 105 acres. Loyola University of Chicago offers three doctoral degrees through their online programs: Doctor of Bioethics, Doctor of Nursing Practice, and a Doctor of Education.

U.S. News and World Report ranks Loyola University Chicago at #99 nationally, tied with our #11 school University at Buffalo – SUNY. They are also ranked as #85 for best education schools nationally, #34 for best nursing schools in doctor of nursing practice nationally, and #115 for biological sciences nationally. The Doctor of Bioethics program is the first of its kind in the nation and provides advanced training for individuals who serve as chairs of hospital’s ethics committees, perform clinical ethics consultations, have administrative oriented ethics work, or are a steward for issues central to an institution’s mission and values. The program is 57 credit hours which works out to 30 credit hours beyond the typical MA in Bioethics or Health Care Ethics. Students also pick a concentration from the following: Catholic Bioethics, Organizational Ethics and Leadership, Clinical Bioethics, Research Ethics, and Public Health Ethics. Tuition for the program is $1,069 per credit hour.

The Doctor of Nursing Practice program is designed to provide to nurses to further enhance their skills in the healthcare environment. The program is designed as a two-year, post-Master of Science Nursing degree cohort program. There are two emphases available in the program: Healthcare Quality Using Education in Safety and Technology and The Infection Prevention DNP. Tuition for the program is $1,081 per credit hour. The Doctor of Education program specializes in School Psychology. The program is targeted at school psychologists who wish to advance their careers. There are two specializations in the program: Mental Health and Data-Based Decision-Making. The program is 72 credit hours of which 36 credit hours can be transferred. This is a blended program with mandatory evening classes several times during the fall and spring semesters. The program costs $949 per credit hour.

Loyola University Chicago is accredited by the Higher Learning Commission of the North Central Association of Colleges and Schools.

13. UNIVERSITY OF ALABAMA

University of Alabama is a public institution founded in 1831. The university is located in Tuscaloosa, Alabama on 1,026 acres. University of Alabama offers a number of online doctoral programs including in the areas of Education, Aerospace Engineering and Mechanics, and Nursing. The Doctor of Education programs include one for Nurse Educators and one in Higher Education Administration.

U.S. News and World Report ranks the University of Alabama at #103 nationally and at #46 among top public schools in the nation. Further, it is ranked #51 among online graduate engineering programs nationally, #93 among the best education schools in the nation, and #34 among the best among Doctor of Nursing Practice degrees in the nation. The primarily online Aerospace Engineering and Mechanics PhD is a research based degree. Required campus visits are arranged between students and their campus advisor. The program is 72 credit hours long and costs $367 per credit hour.

The Doctor of Nursing Practice program is entirely delivered online. The program attempts to prepare nurses in specialty practice or to assume leadership positions in the healthcare field. The program is 40 credit hours and costs $367 per credit hour. The Doctor of Education for Nursing Educators seeks to train practicing nurses for faculty positions in colleges and universities. Both nursing and education faculty teach in the research based program. Coursework is done online and in weekend formats (Friday evening and all day Saturday). The program is 72 credit hours long and costs $367 per credit hour.

The Doctor of Education in Higher Education Administration (Executive Cohort) is a blended program. The program has international trips to learn about administration and running schools in other countries. Students must be on campus one weekend a month for classes. The program is three years long and 66 credit hours total. The program costs $667 per credit hour.

The University of Alabama is accredited by the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools.

14. UNIVERSITY OF SOUTH CAROLINA

University of South Carolina is a public institution founding in 1801. It is located in Columbia, South Carolina on 444 acres. The university provides two doctorates in the field of education. Both are a Doctor of Education in Curriculum and Instruction with one having an emphasis in Curriculum Studies and the other having an emphasis in Educational Technology. Both emphases are targeted at professional educators in K-12 and high education institutions.

U.S. News and World Report ranks the University of South Carolina at #107 nationally and #49 among the top public schools in the nation. They also rank the university at #40 in best online graduate education programs nationally and #93 for best education schools nationally. The online Doctor of Education in Curriculum and Instruction emphasizing Curriculum Studies concentrations on curricular administration including culture and leadership, ethics and morals, and curriculum design and implementation. The program sees the roles of graduates to be those including professors, district-level curriculum administrators, and school-level instructors. The program is constructed to last 36 months with 60 credit hours to be earned. In state tuition for the program is $29,950 for in-state residents and $33,145 for out-of-state residents.

The online Doctor of Education in Curriculum and Instruction emphasizing Educational Technology attempts to train leaders in an educational environment that is constantly shifting in terms of technology. The curriculum attempts to produce leaders who can meet the demands of technology-based learning, instruction, and training with practical, project-based emphasis on design, development, implementation, evaluation, and research. The program is meant to take 36 months and is 60 credit hours long. The tuition for in-state students is $29,950 and the tuition for out-of-state students is $33,145.

The University of South Carolina is accredited by the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges. The College of Education is accredited by the National Council on Accreditation of Teacher Education.

15. IOWA STATE UNIVERSITY

The University of Iowa is a public school founded in 1847. It is located in Iowa City, Iowa on 1,880 acres. The University of Iowa provides another set of unique online doctorates, making their way into another set of niche markets like #8 Clemson from this list. The university provides a Doctor of Philosophy in Apparel, Merchandising, and Design and a Doctor of Philosophy in Hospitality Management.

U.S. News and World Report ranks the University of Iowa at #111 nationally and #51 among the top public schools in the nation. The Doctor of Philosophy in Apparel, Merchandizing, and Design is a hybrid program, requiring students to attend two short on-campus summer course sessions consisting of three weeks each. All other credit hours are done through distance education. The program is 72 credit hours long with 36 hours having to be taken at Iowa State University, 24 credits must be taken at Iowa State University over six consecutive semesters, and 6 must be taken in the first summer. The cost for the program is $565 per credit hour plus additional fees including application, technology, and delivery fees.

The Doctor of Philosophy in Hospitality Management distance degree is also a hybrid program, requiring students to attend two consecutive three-week summer sessions. Online sessions are delivered throughout the fall and spring semester. The program is 72 credit hours with up to 30 credit hours accepted from master’s degree coursework, 24 credit hours taken at Iowa State University, and 15 credit hours in research/dissertation. The cost for the program is $565 per credit hour plus additional fees including application, technology, and delivery fees.

Iowa State University is accredited by the Accreditation Commission for Programs in Hospitality Administration (ACPHA) and by the Higher Learning Commission. The Apparel, Merchandising, and Design program is endorsed by the American Apparel and Footwear Association.

16. UNIVERSITY OF MISSOURI

The University of Missouri is a public institution that was founded in 1839. The university is located in Columbia Missouri on 1,262 acres. The University of Missouri provides a number of different avenues for online doctoral programs. Included are the Doctor of Philosophy in Art Education, the Doctor of Education in Educational Leadership, Architectural Studies, and Nursing which has a number of concentration areas.

The Ph.D. in Art Education is targeted primarily at art agency directors, college deans, museum administrators, and university professors. While most courses can be completed online, three consecutive semesters must be completed on campus. The degree is 72 credit hours and is $407.50 per credit hour. The program is estimated to cost $29,340 upon completion. The Doctor of Education in Educational Leadership and is targeted at principals, superintendents, directors, university administrators, faculty, and others. The coursework is online as well as two consecutive summer courses at UM’s campus as well as courses in partner campuses in the spring and fall semesters. The program is 46 credit hours long and costs $407.50 per credit hour. The program is estimated to cost $18,745 on completion.

The online doctorate in Archaeological Studies is entirely delivered online with no campus visits required. Optional on-campus workshops are available for students in the summer. There are a number of emphasis areas including Aesthetics of Design, Design Education, Facility Management and Design, Housing and Neighborhood Design, Inclusion Design/Accessibility, and Sustainable Design. The program is 72 credit hours long and $681.20 per credit hour. The program costs $49,046.40 upon completion.

The Doctor of Nursing Practice programs have six emphases available including Adult-Gerontology Clinical Nurse Specialist, Family Nurse Practitioner, Family Psychiatric and Mental Health Nurse Practitioner, Nursing Leadership and Innovations in Health Care, Pediatric Clinical Nurse Specialist, and Pediatric Nurse Practitioner. All programs except the Nursing Leadership and Innovations in Health care (which is 40 credit hours) are 72 credit hours. The programs each cost $435.44 per credit hour. Most programs are blended and have various on-site requirements. The last program is a Ph.D. in Nursing which is 77 credit hours long at $448.64 per credit hour. If one has a Master’s of Science in Nursing, the program is 56 credit hours long.

The University of Missouri is accredited by the Higher Learning Commission. Programs are accredited by the Commission on Collegiate Nursing Education and the Council for Accreditation of Counseling and Related Educational Programs.

17. UNIVERSITY OF NEBRASKA-LINCOLN

The University of Nebraska-Lincoln is a public institution that was founded in 1869. The university is located in Lincoln, Nebraska on 622 acres. The distance education programs provided by the University of Nebraska-Lincoln include a Doctor of Education in Educational Administration, a Doctor of Education in Educational Studies, and a Doctor of Philosophy in Educational Studies. Like in other institutions, the Doctor of Education degrees are positioned to help professionals in the field advance their knowledge in order to apply it to real-world situations in which they already work. The Philosophical Doctorate is primarily a research degree.

U.S. New and World Report ranks the University of Nebraska-Lincoln at #111 nationally, tied with our #15 and #16 schools on this list. Further, the university is ranked #51 among top public schools, #4 among best online graduate education programs, and #43 among best education schools nationally. The Doctor of Philosophy in Educational Studies has three areas of specialization: Educational Administration, Teacher Education, and Special Education and Communication Disorders. The program, while mostly delivered for distance students, requires six hours of on-campus research seminars. The Doctor of Philosophy in Educational Studies is 90 credit hours long and costs between $297.25 and $325.50 per credit hour for residents and between $297.25 and $609 for non-resident students.

The Doctor of Education degree prepares the student for furthering their practice as an educator in their current field of employment. It is primarily for educational administrators within either the P-12 or higher education contexts. The program seeks to help train leaders who wish to gain real life experience in the area of administration through internships, work in groundbreaking cognate areas historically important to practitioners, and gain group skills by working on collaborative projects. The program is 96 credit hours long and costs between $297.25 and $325.50 per credit hour for residents and between $297.25 and $609 for non-resident students.

The University of Nebraska – Lincoln is accredited by the Higher Learning Commission.

18. UNIVERSITY OF KANSAS

The University of Kansas is a public institution that was founded in 1865. The university is located in Lawrence, Kansas and sits on 1,000 acres. The University of Kansas online programs provide a Doctor of Nursing Practice and a Doctor of Philosophy in Nursing. The Doctor of Nursing Practice has two concentration areas in which to specialize: Advanced Practice or Leadership. U.S. News and World Report ranks the University of Kansas at #118 among national universities and #56 among the top public schools. They also rank the university at #19 among top online graduate nursing programs and #59 among Doctor of Nursing practice programs nationally.

The Doctor of Nursing Practice degree has two tracks. One is a post-baccalaureate of Science in Nursing in which the student enters directly into the program after they finish their undergraduate work. The student takes an initial set of courses that prepare them for the advanced practice clinical or functional role. This leads to the second part of the degree which is centered in doctoral level preparation for advanced practice clinical or functional roles. The Post-Master’s Doctor of Nursing Practice is designed for the student to begin their work at the doctoral level since students will have already earned a Master of Science in Nursing degree. The program aims to train nurses already in practice to advance their skills in their given areas and specialties. The Advanced Practice specialty has four areas in which to specialize. They are Adult/Gerontological Nurse Practitioner, Family Nurse Practitioner, Nurse-Midwife, and Psychiatric/Mental Health Nurse Practitioner. The Leadership specialty has three emphases including Organizational Leadership, Public Health Nursing, and Nursing Informatics. The Post-Master’s Doctor of Nursing Practice is 32 credit hours at $775 per credit hour.

The Ph.D. in Nursing is meant to prepare graduates to function in faculty positions, conduct independent research and scholarly endeavors in nursing, generate and expand theoretical bases for nursing practice, and provide leadership within the profession. The Ph.D. program is 65 credit hours long. The program is delivered in a combination of one-week summer intensive courses, online coursework throughout the academic year, and e-mentoring with faculty and an advisor. It costs $775 per credit hour.

The University of Kansas is accredited by the Higher Learning Commission of the North Central Association of Colleges and Schools. Nursing programs are accredited by the Commission on Collegiate Nursing Education.

19. TEMPLE UNIVERSITY

Temple University is a public institution founded in 1884. The university is located in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania on 384 acres. Temple University offers three different doctoral degrees in the area of physical therapy and training. The degrees are Clinical Doctorate of Athletic Training, Clinical Doctorate in Occupational Therapy, and Doctorate in Physical Therapy. All programs are meant to further the trainer’s and therapist’s techniques and skills for use in practice as well as in educational settings.

Temple University is ranked #118 among national universities and #56 among the top public institutions in the nation. The university is also ranked #27 among health care management programs in the nation, and #32 among occupational therapy programs in the nation, #53 among physical therapy programs in the nation. The Doctor of Athletic Training degree is for those who are already certified trainers with a master’s degree. The goal of the program is to help graduates gain evidence-based techniques and improve patient outcomes. The program is a cohort model that lasts two years long and is 36 credit hours. Tuition is $960 per credit hour totaling $34,560 for the whole program. There are no additional registration or tuition related fees.

The Clinical Doctorate in Occupational Therapy is a professional degree (non-researched based) meant for currently licensed occupational therapists. The program is flexible and can be tailored to the student’s area of interest. Faculty are experts in child and youth development, adult rehabilitation, community-based practices, and promoting inclusive policies. The program is a total of 31 credit hours taken during two years. There are two to three required in-person meetings per year on campus. These include orientation, launching and wrapping up current classwork, and opportunities to network with faculty. Tuition is $960 per credit hour, making the program $29,760 in total with no additional fees. The Doctor of Physical Therapy prepares graduates to diagnose, evaluate, and treat movement-related disorders. Students complete 42 weeks of full-time internships at large nation-wide clinical sites. The program is 130 credit hours at $760 per credit hour.

Temple University is accredited by the Middle States Commission on Higher Education. Programs are accredited by the Accrediting Counsel for the Occupational Therapy Education of the American Occupational Therapy Association, Commission on Accreditation in Physical Therapy Education, the Commission on the Accreditation of Athletic Training, and the commission on Accreditation of Allied Health Professions.

20. CATHOLIC UNIVERSITY OF AMERICA

Catholic University of America is a Roman Catholic, private institution which was founded in 1887. The university is located in Washington, D.C. on 176 acres. Catholic University of America offers online doctoral programs in Nursing and Theology. There are two degrees in the Nursing field, one being a professional doctorate or a Doctor of Nursing Practice and a research degree or Doctor of Philosophy in Nursing. In the area of Theology, the university offers two Doctor of Ministry degrees online which include a Doctor of Ministry in Evangelization and a Doctor of ministry in Liturgical Catechesis.

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U.S. News and World report ranks Catholic University of America #124 nationally, #7 for online graduate nursing programs nationally, and #26 for the Doctor of Nursing Program nationally. The Doctor of Nursing practice program targets nurses who want to become advanced nurse leaders in the field. Nurses are trained to take on complex nursing responsibilities in practice, education, and leadership. The program is 32 credit hours long at $905 per credit hour. The Doctor of Philosophy in Nursing is a research degree meant give provide students with advanced research skills to help nurses advance ideas for optimal care in the field. The PhD is 79 credit hours long. Students may transfer 24 credit hours of coursework after passing comprehensive exams. The program costs $905 per credit hour.

In theology, the Doctor of Ministry in Evangelization is targeted at pastoral ministers who wish to pursue an advanced theological education and pastoral skills. The program is designed for lay, religious, and ordained ministers and accepts people from all communities, not just Catholic. The program is 30 credit hours long and is $1,785 per credit hour. Further, there are two mandatory summer two week residencies during the program. The Doctor of Ministry in Liturgical Catechesis is a professional doctorate targeted at those interested in Pastoral Formation. The program is 30 credit hours long at $1,785 per credit hour. There are also two-week on-campus summer residencies required.

The Catholic University of America is accredited by the Middle States Commission on Higher Education. The Nursing program is accredited by the Commission on Collegiate Nursing Education.

21. ARIZONA STATE UNIVERSITY

Arizona State University is a public institution which was founded in 1885. It is located in Tempe, Arizona on 661 acres. Arizona State University offers online doctoral programs in the areas of Behavioral Health and Education. In the area of Behavioral Sciences, the university offers two concentrations. One of the concentrations is Clinical and the other is in Management. The Doctor of Education is in Leadership and Innovation.

U.S. News and World Report ranks Arizona State University at #129 among national universities, #1 among the most innovative schools nationally, #61 among top public schools nationally, and at #40 among top online graduate education programs nationally. The Doctor of Behavioral Health with the clinical concentration is meant to prepare master’s level clinicians to work within the context of the evolving marketplace of primary care. The program includes a mandatory 400-hour clinical internship. It is 84 credit hours long with the ability to transfer in 30 hours from master’s level work. The program is delivered online including in synchronous live chats with instructors and students, and internship training. The program costs $1058 per credit hour.

The Doctor of Behavioral Health with the management concentration seeks to provide students with additional management didactics, training, and experience. The program is delivered primarily through online synchronous courses live with instructors and students as well as live internship training. The program is 84 credit hours long with the possibility of transferring 30 master’s level credits into the program. The program costs $1058 per credit hour.

The Doctor of Education in Leadership and Innovation is targeted at practicing educators who are teachers, teacher leaders, principals, superintendents, higher education professionals, or leaders in various educational contexts. The program focuses on problems in practice in the areas of P-12 leadership, higher education leadership, and systems change leadership. The program is 60 credit hours long and costs $685 per credit hour.

Arizona State University is accredited by the Higher Learning committee of the North Central Association of Schools and Colleges.

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22. UNIVERSITY OF KENTUCKY

The University of Kentucky is a public institution that was founded in 1865. The university is located in Lexington, Kentucky on 814 acres. The University of Kentucky offers a fully online Doctor of Education in teacher leadership. It is built to be a practical degree that centers on action research relevant for work in educational institutions.

U.S. News and World Report ranks the University of Kentucky at #113 nationally and #63 among top public schools. Further, it ranks the university at #62 for best education schools nationally. The Doctor of Education in teacher leadership is a cohort program that provides personalized leadership training with peer networking and collegial support. Those who are in the program are usually serving as change agents, classroom supporters, curriculum specialists, data coaches, department chairs, team leaders, instructional coaches, peer mentors, resource providers, or school leaders.

The program takes approximately four years if you follow the cohort model and keep up with the designed coursework. The program is 46 credit hours and costs $509 per credit hour. In order to enter the program, the student needs a master’s degree from an accredited university, a minimum of a 3.5 GPA in that graduate program, combined verbal and quantitative score on the GRE of 1000 (old GRE scale) or 300 (new GRE scale) with analytical writing being a 4.0 or 49th percentile, and completion of a graduate-level statistics course with a minimum of a B in the course.

The University of Kentucky is accredited by the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges. The Doctor of Education in teacher leadership is endorsed by the Kentucky Education Professional Standards Board.

23. UNIVERSITY OF ARKANSAS

The University of Arkansas is a public institution that was founded in 1871. The university is located in Fayetteville, Arkansas on 718 acres. The University of Arkansas offers hybrid programs that have on-campus requirements at various rates. The degrees that are offered are in the fields of Education and Nursing. The online and hybrid doctorates include a Doctor of Education in Adult and Lifelong Learning, a Doctor of Education in Educational Leadership, a Doctor of Education in Human Resource and Workforce Development Education, and a Doctor of Nursing Practice.

U.S. News and World Report ranks the University of Arkansas at #135 nationally and #64 among top public schools nationally. Further, the university is ranked at #47 for top online graduate education programs nationally, at #104 for best online graduate nursing programs nationally, at #66 for best education schools nationally, and at #76 for best nursing schools in doctor of nursing practice nationally. The Doctor of Education in Adult and Lifelong Learning focuses on assessment, design, and implementation of programs for adult learners. The program is mostly online with four face-to-face sessions that occur on the Fayetteville campus. The program is 96 credit hours long at $409.94 per credit hour.

The Doctor of Education in Educational Leadership is targeted at students pursuing jobs as principals, administration, superintendents, federal and state governmental persons, or other educational leadership professionals. The coursework for the program is almost entirely online with a mandatory campus seminar to be attended once per semester. The program is 42 credit hours long and is $409.94 per credit hour.

The Doctor of Education in Human Resource and Workforce Development Education has a wide range of applications and students who enter the program often have degrees in psychology, organizational behavior, organizational development, consulting, program design, among many others. The coursework is completely online and cost is $409.94 per credit hour. The Doctor of Nursing Practice is designated for nurses who wish to expand their practice into larger leadership roles. The program is 79 credit hours long with coursework done completely online. Clinical hours will be arranged locally. The cost for the program is $409.94 per credit hour.

The University of Arkansas is accredited by the Higher Learning Commission.

24. ST. JOHN’S UNIVERSITY

St. John’s University is a Roman Catholic institution in the Vincentian tradition that was founded in 1870. It is located in Queens, New York on 97 acres. The university provides an online Doctor of Philosophy in Literacy. Like all good educators and educational research, St. John’s recognizes that the influence of poverty has a detrimental impact on the social, emotional, physical, and educational well-being of students. The Doctor of Philosophy in Literacy attempts to take these underlying causes seriously and explore solutions to help deal with them in larger educational and societal contexts.

U.S. News and World Report ranks St. John’s University at #164 among national university and #22 among the best online graduate education programs nationally. The Doctor of Philosophy program in Literacy prepares professionals to work with high-risk learners. The program is targeted for those who wish to work as teacher educators at the university level, school literacy specialists, or literacy leader advocates. If the student does not currently hold an NYSED, the program will move the student toward acquiring the state certificate.

There are two ways to complete the program. The first is for those who have completed the master’s level or certificate program in literacy or reading and who have earned a literacy certificate in the state of New York. This course of action takes a minimum of 42 credit hours to complete the doctoral work at St. John’s University. Added together, 75 credit hours will be completed between all graduate level work. The second is for those who have completed master’s level work in another field of education. These students also complete a minimum of 42 credit hours but must do prerequisite courses in literacy which equal 21 credits.

St. John’s University is accredited by the Middle States Commission on Higher Education and the School of Education is accredited by the Teacher Education Accreditation Council.

25. UNIVERSITY OF HAWAII

The University of Hawaii is a public institution which was founded in 1907. The university is located in Honolulu, Hawaii on 320 acres. The University of Hawaii has two distance doctoral programs in the field of Nursing. The first is a Doctor of Philosophy in Nursing and the other is a Doctor of Nursing Practice. In terms of the Doctor of Philosophy degree, the school is redesigning it and it will not be taking students until the fall of 2018 but applications can be submitted in September of 2017.

U.S. News and World Report ranks the University of Hawaii at #169 nationally and at #89 among top public schools nationally. Further, they rank the institution at #61 for online graduate nursing programs nationally and the Doctor of Nursing Practice program at #88 nationally.

The Doctor of Philosophy in Nursing program attempts to prepare scholars who approach clinical practice through culturally sensitive approaches in diverse societies. Courses are delivered online through synchronous and asynchronous means and do so through a cohort. The program currently states that it takes approximately four years to complete on a part-time basis. Summer intensives are held prior to the start of the fall semester and take two to five weeks. Since the program is becoming restructured, please see the link above and continually monitor changes that are being made to the program if you are interested. The program currently requires 45 credit hours post master’s degree and is $1,001 per credit hour.

The Doctor of Nursing Practice degree is meant to help prepare nurses for advanced level nursing science. The program focuses on training nurses to become leaders and educators in clinical settings and to use research to help better transform health care. There are two entry points into the program. The first is when a student has a bachelor of science in nursing upon entry. In this version of the program, the student takes between 73-79 credit hours. The second entry point happens when a nursing student comes into the program with a Master’s of Science in Nursing. This version of the program is 37-40 credit hours long. The program costs $1,001 per credit hour.

The University of Hawaii is accredited by the Senior Commission of the Western Association of Schools and Colleges. The Nursing program is accredited by the Commission on Collegiate Nursing Education.