Online PhD Programs & Online Doctoral Degrees

A doctoral degree – sometimes referred to as a doctorate or doctorate degree – is the final credential in the hierarchy of academic degrees awarded by colleges and universities. Professional doctorate programs are designed to qualify you to practice a particular profession, such as medicine or law. PhD degrees, which you earn in a PhD program, are more academically focused than professional doctorates. Earning a doctoral degrees takes three or more years of post-baccalaureate study, and often requires you to submit and defend an original thesis as well. Request more information about online PhD programs from the schools listed below!

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More schools offering GRADUATE Programs of Interest (Alpha Sort)

La Salle UniversityBusiness
Philadelphia, PA

La Sierra UniversityEducation
Riverside, CA

Lake Erie College of Osteopathic MedicineMedical
Erie, PA

Lamar UniversityBusiness
Beaumont, TX

Lamar UniversityEducation
Beaumont, TX

Lamar UniversityEngineering
Beaumont, TX

Lawrence Technological UniversityEngineering
Southfield, MI

Lehigh UniversityEngineering
Bethlehem, PA

Lehigh UniversityEducation
Bethlehem, PA

Lehigh UniversityBusiness
Bethlehem, PA

Lesley UniversityEducation
Cambridge, MA

Lewis & Clark CollegeEducation
Portland, OR

Lewis UniversityEducation
Romeoville, IL

Liberty UniversityEducation
Lynchburg, VA

Lincoln Memorial UniversityEducation
Harrogateq, TN

Lindenwood UniversityEducation
St. Charles, MO

Lipscomb UniversityEducation
Nashville, TN

LIU PostEducation
Brookville, NY

LIU PostBusiness
Brookville, NY

Loma Linda UniversityMedical
Loma Linda, CA

Longwood UniversityBusiness
Farmville, VA

Louisiana State University--Baton RougeBusiness
Baton Rouge, LA

Louisiana State University--Baton RougeEngineering
Baton Rouge, LA

Louisiana State University--Baton RougeEducation
Baton Rouge, LA

Louisiana State University--ShreveportBusiness
Shreveport, LA

Louisiana Tech UniversityBusiness
Ruston, LA

Louisiana Tech UniversityEducation
Ruston, LA

Louisiana Tech UniversityEngineering
Ruston, LA

Loyola Marymount UniversityEducation
Los Angeles, CA

Loyola Marymount UniversityBusiness
Los Angeles, CA

Loyola University ChicagoBusiness
Chicago, IL

Loyola University ChicagoEducation
Chicago, IL

Loyola University ChicagoMedical
Maywood, IL

Loyola University MarylandBusiness
Baltimore, MD

Loyola University New OrleansBusiness
New Orleans, LA

LSU Health Sciences Center--New OrleansMedical
New Orleans, LA

LSU Health Sciences Center--ShreveportMedical
Shreveport, LA

Lynn UniversityEducation
Boca Raton, FL

Manhattanville CollegeEducation
Purchase, NY

Marist CollegeBusiness
Poughkeepsie, NY

Marquette UniversityBusiness
Milwaukee, WI

Marquette UniversityEngineering
Milwaukee, WI

Marquette UniversityEducation
Milwaukee, WI

Marshall UniversityEducation
South Charleston, WV

Marshall UniversityBusiness
Huntington, WV

Marshall UniversityMedical
Huntington, WV

Maryville University of St. LouisEducation
St. Louis, MO

Massachusetts Institute of TechnologyEngineering
Cambridge, MA

Massachusetts Institute of TechnologyBusiness
Cambridge, MA

Mayo Medical SchoolMedical
Rochester, MN

Online Doctoral Programs & Online PhD Degrees – Job Outlook

You can earn a doctorate degree online or through traditional on-campus education. If you decide to pursue one of the many available doctoral programs or online PhD degree programs you will have to work hard; these programs challenge you with the most sophisticated content possible, because online doctorate degrees represent the pinnacle of achievement in distance learning.

Earning your doctorate or PhD online can be a wise investment as well. Data from the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) shows that doctoral degree holders had a median weekly income of $1,624 and 2.5% unemployment in 2012. For comparison, workers with bachelor’s degrees had a median weekly income of $1,066 and 4.5% unemployment, and those with only a high school diploma had a median weekly income of $652 and 8.3% unemployment. Earning a doctorate can clearly boost your income and increase job security.

Here are some occupations a doctoral degree can help you enter. The median annual incomes listed were reported by the BLS in May 2014:

  • General practice physicians ($180,180)
  • Pharmacists ($120,950)
  • Chief Executives ($173,320)
  • University professor – business ($74,090)
  • University professor – engineering ($94,130)

In-Demand Doctoral Degree Spotlight

Here are some doctorate and PhD programs that are now very popular:

Online PhD programs in psychology

A doctorate in psychology is usually required to practice clinical, counseling or research psychology, as well as certification and licensing. Those pursuing this path typically earn a Ph.D. in Psychology or a Doctor of Psychology. Earning the degree requires a dissertation and a one-year internship. Career paths include clinical psychology, counseling or research. Psychologists are also hired by schools to work with students and in healthcare facilities. Psychologists made a median annual wage of $69,280 in May 2012, according to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics. Job growth is expected to be about 12% over the next decade, according to BLS.

Online PhD programs in education

Graduating from a PhD program in education allows for consideration for the highest jobs in the profession, positions where you can, for example, shape educational policy as a postsecondary school administrator. Others use a doctorate to enter the top teaching positions in their chosen field, typically at the university level. An education PhD coupled with experience in leadership roles within education opens the doors to the top jobs in the profession, such as college dean. While pay varies depending on the career path chosen, postsecondary education administrators made $86,490 in May 2012. Job growth is expected at 15% over the next decade, according to the BLS.

Online nursing PhD programs

Because a master’s degree in nursing has become so much more common in recent years, nurses now pursue doctorate degrees to prepare them for the top jobs in the profession. Such specialties as nurse practitioner, nurse anesthetists and nurse midwives all can be attained with a masters, but many now choose to earn a Doctor of Nursing Practice (DNP). Nurse anesthetists work with anesthesia for patients, as well as caring for them before and after procedures requiring anesthesia. Nurse midwives care for women in prenatal care, during the delivery and in post-delivery, while nurse practitioners serve as primary care providers, providing a multitude of advance nursing services to patients. Pay varies among the professions, but the U.S. Bureau of Labor Services (BLS) reports the median salary for people in these professions was $148,160 for nurse anesthetists, $89,960 for nurse practitioners and $89,600 for nurse midwives. Job growth is expected to be about 31% across all three professions, according to the BLS.

Online PhD programs in public health

A doctorate in public health is for those who are focused on attaining the top jobs in public health for federal, state and local governments. These health agencies are typically led by someone with at least a master’s degree, and many now have a doctorate. There are many different paths to take, but generally those who enter a doctorate program focus on community health, school health or health promotion (the latter is becoming especially important in poorer communities where healthy eating and lifestyles are often scarce). Those who work in public health roles made an average of $48,790 in May 2012, according to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS), although administrators with a PhD can expect to make more. Job growth in this field is expected to be about 21%, according to the BLS.

Online PhD programs in business
Typically, those with a doctorate in business are focusing on becoming educators or educational leaders, such as school deans or program designers. A doctorate is not usually necessary to become a leader in a business organization, although some do seek a PhD in specialty fields. Usually the career path for someone with a doctorate in business is to become the dean of a college school of business or, ultimate, president of a university. School district superintendents also typically have a doctorate degree, sometimes in business although often in education. The pay for a person with a doctorate degree  is not reported by the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, although they are typically six-figure jobs with many of the perks of top executive jobs, such as expense allowances and use of company transportation.