In a hurry to finish your PhD and searching for a doctorate degree online with no dissertation requirement?
Most doctoral programs require students to write a dissertation, which is a lengthy research paper that introduces an original concept, theory or practice to help advance your field. This can be just as daunting as it sounds! Fortunately, a growing number of universities are now offering doctoral students an alternative to the dissertation: a capstone project.
Like dissertations, capstone projects are a culmination of your education, and usually involve some original research and/or contribution to your field. There may be a written portion and an application portion. You may be working “in the field” as a part of your capstone project. It all depends on the school and program.
Sound like a promising alternative? If online doctoral programs without dissertations sound like a good option for you, read on!
Online Doctoral Programs in Education Without Dissertation
Having an advanced level degree in education can really set you apart and open new doors. More and more universities are now offering education doctoral programs without dissertation requirements, which means you may be able to complete the program sooner, without neglecting your other obligations, and without writing that massive research paper!
Online EdD Programs Without Dissertation:
- Online EdD – Educational Leadership & Administration (no dissertation required)
- Online EdD – Curriculum, Instruction, & Assessment (no dissertation required)
- Online EdD – Reading, Literacy, & Assessment (no dissertation required)
- Online EdD – Higher Education Leadership & Management (no dissertation required)
- Online EdD – Community College Leadership (no dissertation required)
- Online EdD – Educational Technology (no dissertation required)
- Online EdD – Special Education (no dissertation required)
- Online EdD – Early Childhood Education (no dissertation required)
- Online EdD – Higher Education and Adult Learning (no dissertation required)
There are two main doctoral options in the education field: a PhD in Education and Doctor of Education (EdD). So which is the best choice?
A PhD in Education is ideal for someone interested in academic and/or research positions in higher education, or in a corporate, military or government position. Unfortunately this path does not have an online PhD without dissertation option. It is founded in research and theory, and you will be required to complete a traditional dissertation.
An EdD, however, focuses more on developments in the field and preparing you to work in a classroom or for a school district. Quite a few schools now offer online EdD no dissertation programs. University of Southern Mississippi, for example, offers a part time, fully online EdD program that culminates in a capstone project in educational administration instead of a traditional dissertation.
If you are comparing online doctoral programs no dissertation, some of the specializations you may be able to choose from include:
- Curriculum, Instruction and Assessment
- Educational Administration and Leadership
- Personalized and Competency-Based Instruction
- Early Childhood
- K-12 Studies
- Special Education
- Educational Technology
Be sure to select the degree program and specialization that will work with your lifestyle and commitments, and help you achieve your long-term career goals.
Online DBA Without Dissertation – Doctor of Business Administration
A Doctor of Business Administration is the highest academic degree in the business world, and is ideal for business professionals in corporations, the public sector, or academia.
Quite a few Online DBA concentrations are available without a dissertation. Instead, you complete a capstone or doctoral study project. These projects provide real-world learning and leadership opportunities.
No Dissertation DBA Programs:
- Online DBA – Leadership (no dissertation required)
- Online DBA – Project Management (no dissertation required)
- Online DBA – General Business (no dissertation required)
- Online DBA – Accounting (no dissertation required)
- Online DBA – Finance (no dissertation required)
- Online DBA – Human Resource Management (no dissertation required)
- Online DBA – Supply Chain Management (no dissertation required)
- Online DBA – Information Systems Management (no dissertation required)
- Online DBA – International Business (no dissertation required)
- Online DBA – Marketing (no dissertation required)
- Online DBA – Entrepreneurship (no dissertation required)
- Online DBA – Healthcare Management (no dissertation required)
- Online DBA – Homeland Security (no dissertation required)
- Online DBA – Social Impact Management (no dissertation required)
- Online DBA – Technology Entrepreneurship (no dissertation required)
- Online DBA – Energy Management (no dissertation required)
An online DBA program focuses on advanced decision-making and leadership skills, integrating business theory and applied research. The capstone or doctoral study project will relate to the specialization you have chosen and prepare you for that particular career path.
Most online DBA programs allow you to tailor your education by selecting the specialization that best suits your interests and aspirations.
Whether you work as a business consultant or manager, as an entrepreneur, as a school administrator or in government, online PhD no dissertation programs like this can help you take your education – and your career in business – to the next level.
List of Online Doctorate Without Dissertation Programs
Here’s a list of doctoral programs that don’t require a dissertation.
Instead, you complete a capstone project or a doctoral study project.
Healthcare & Public Health
Computers & Information Technology
Business & Management
- Online DBA – Leadership
- Online DBA – Project Management
- Online DBA – General Business
- Online DBA – Accounting
- Online DBA – Finance
- Online DBA – Supply Chain Management
- Online DBA – Information Systems Management
- Online DBA – International Business
- Online DBA – Marketing
- Online DBA – Human Resource Management
- Online DBA – Entrepreneurship
- Online DBA – Healthcare Management
- Online DBA – Homeland Security
- Online DBA – Social Impact Management
- Online DBA – Technology Entrepreneurship
- Online DBA – Energy Management
- Online EdD – Educational Leadership & Administration
- Online EdD – Curriculum, Instruction, & Assessment
- Online EdD – Reading, Literacy, & Assessment
- Online EdD – Higher Education Leadership & Management
- Online EdD – Educational Technology
- Online EdD – Special Education
- Online EdD – Community College Leadership
- Online EdD – Early Childhood Education
- Online EdD – Higher Education and Adult Learning
Be sure to check out the specializations available, as well as the particular requirements for each of these non dissertation PhD programs to be sure you select the one that will best suit you and help you achieve your goals.
FAQs: Doctoral Programs Without Dissertation
What is a Doctoral Dissertation?
A doctoral dissertation, the culmination of most doctoral programs, is a substantial written document in which the student uses the teachings and skills gleaned from the entire program to develop and discuss an original concept, theory or practice that will help advance the field.
Writing a dissertation is no easy feat! They are typically hundreds of pages long, and students work on them for over a year, reviewing research, conducting experiments and analyzing data.
Because this project is both daunting and demanding, many universities have come up with alternatives that allow students to demonstrate their knowledge and provide worthwhile contributions to their field without completing a traditional dissertation.
What Are All But Dissertation Completion Programs?
“All But Dissertation” (ABD) completion programs, also known as PhD completion programs, are designed to help students who have completed all the requirements of a doctoral degree program except the dissertation.
Oftentimes students work diligently through the coursework of their doctoral program, but fall short when it comes to completing the required dissertation. In fact, only about 56% of those who start a doctoral degree program earn their doctorate or PhD within 10 years. Completing a dissertation is an enormous project, and life, family, careers and other obligations sometimes get in the way.
For example, the Dissertation Completion Pathway (DCP) offered by Northcentral University is one example of a structured program that transfers credit for prior academic coursework and provides guidance and mentorship as you work to finish your dissertation. This type of program typically takes 2-3 years.
Is a Dissertation Required for a PhD?
Not always. In the past a dissertation was required for a PhD, but a growing number of institutions have started to offer online doctoral programs no dissertation.
Instead, students may complete a capstone project to demonstrate their knowledge and provide new contributions to the field. This may be a combination of a research paper and field work, or perhaps you might do some consulting work at a functioning business.
Capstone projects vary from school to school, and program to program.
One of the benefits of non-dissertation doctorate degrees is that you can finish in less time. Check out our posts on accelerated online doctoral programs and 1 year online doctoral programs for a deeper look.
Is financial aid available for online PhD programs?
Yes, financial aid is available for online PhD programs.
Federal Financial Aid
First, you should submit the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA), just like you did when you were an undergraduate student. This will open the door to federal grants and loans, as well as many other resources.
State Financial Aid
In addition to Federal financial aid, almost 40 states offer student loan programs. Like Federal loans, the interest rates offered by most state programs are generally less than those charged by private student loan lenders. You can check out the individual State Financial Aid programs here.
Scholarships and Grants for Online Doctorate Programs
Additionally, online PhD and doctoral students are often eligible for grants, fellowships, and scholarships. These may be available through the school, large corporations, or professional associations.
Here are some helpful doctoral scholarship resources:
- CollegeGrant Scholarships and Grants
- College Scholarships for Doctoral Students
- PhD Scholarships for Women
- Graduate Scholarships
- PhD Project Education Funding
You can also check with the financial aid office at the university you choose to learn more about institutional funding and financial aid opportunities.
Online PsyD Programs Without a Dissertation
A PsyD is a Doctor of Psychology program, meaning you will earn a doctorate in the field of psychology. This professional degree covers both Clinical Psychology and Counseling Psychology. There are a few online PsyD programs that require no dissertation.
Some common online PsyD fields of specialization include:
- Behavioral Health Leadership
- Behavioral Psychology
- Child Psychology
- Child, Adolescent and Family Psychology
- Clinical Psychology
- Couple or Family Therapy
- Forensic Psychology
- Health Psychology and Behavioral Medicine
- Mental Illness
Instead of a dissertation, you will complete a PsyD capstone project related to your field of specialization.
Can You Get a No Dissertation Doctorate Online?
Yes! A growing number of reputable, accredited colleges and universities offer non dissertation doctorate programs.
We’ve compiled a list of universities offering online doctorate degrees without dissertation requirements below:
|University||No Dissertation Doctoral Degrees|
|American Sentinel University|| |
|Arizona State University|| |
|Ashford University|| |
|Bay Path University|| |
|Baylor University|| |
|Capella University|| |
|East Tennessee University|| |
|Eastern Kentucky University|| |
|Gannon University – Erie|| |
|Georgia College|| |
|Indiana State University|| |
|Johns Hopkins University|| |
|Loma Linda University|| |
|Morehead State University|| |
|Nebraska Methodist College|| |
|New York University|| |
|Northcentral University|| |
|Quinnipiac University|| |
|Temple University|| |
|Texas Woman’s University|| |
|University of Massachusetts – Boston|| |
|University of Southern California|| |
|University of Southern Mississippi|| |
|University of Virginia|| |
|University of Western States|| |
|Utica College|| |
|Vanderbilt University|| |
|Virginia Commonwealth University|| |
|Walden University|| |
|West Virginia University|| |
These programs can work around your existing obligations such as family or work commitments, and will allow you to advance in your career and contribute to your field in ways that don’t require a massive research paper.
Are there any PhD Programs without dissertation requirements?
There are a number of doctoral programs without dissertation requirements. But most Doctor of Philosophy (PhD) programs still require a traditional dissertation.
The main reason dissertations are required for most students is so that you can demonstrate that you are adding knowledge to your field. But there are quite a few ways you can do that.
As you can see with the online DBA programs, a few colleges are no longer requiring dissertations. They allow you to complete a doctoral capstone project instead. No, it’s not technically a dissertation. But you do prove that you have acquired a high level of expertise in your field of study.
Higher education is continuing to change at a rapid pace. As another example, a number of PhD programs without GRE requirements are appearing.
How many credits do PhD Programs require?
Most PhD programs require between 54 and 90 credit hours. That’s between 18 and 30 courses. That is a huge range! This is true for both campus-based PhD programs and online PhD programs.
Let’s look at one of Northcentral University’s online programs as an example. The Online DBA in Accounting is 54 credit hours and consists of 18 courses (most courses are 3 credit hours).
In contrast, if you attend a state university campus program like the University of Illinois, the PhD in Business requires 64 credit hours (around 21 courses), provided you already have your master’s degree.
Are there any EdD Programs without dissertation?
Yes, there are a number of EdD programs without dissertation. Here is a list of Ed.D. concentrations / specializations without a dissertation requirement: Online Doctor of Education list.
Are there any Online Educational Administration Doctorate Degrees with No Dissertation required?
Yes! You can get a without completing a dissertation: Online EdD – Educational Leadership & Administration
Do all doctoral programs require a dissertation?
No. A wide-range of doctoral programs do not have a dissertation. Instead, graduate schools allow you to complete a capstone project which focuses on solving a real-world problem.
You can also earn your doctorate through an accredited online program if you don’t want to attend on campus.
Is a PhD Program Without a Dissertation respected?
A dissertation allows students the opportunity to demonstrate expertise in their field of study.
In certain fields, a dissertation will be the measure of quality. This is true for academia should you ever want to be a tenured professor at Harvard. But if that’s not your goal, doctoral programs in higher education, leadership, or business administration are reputable – provided you earn your doctorate from a graduate school with regional accreditation.
Can I get an online doctorate degree without a dissertation?
Yes. There are dozens of doctorate degrees with no dissertation being offered online from accredited universities. The most common are the Doctor of Education, Doctor of Business Administration, Doctor of Psychology, and the Doctor of Nursing Practice.
Are there any 18-month Doctorate with No Dissertation Programs?
Yes. Some online PhD no dissertation programs can be completed in as little as 18 to 24 months. To finish in a short time like this, you will need to be enrolled full-time and progressing through your courses successfully. You will also need your capstone project to be approved in a timely manner.
Are there any PhD Without Dissertation Programs Online?
Yes, a number of universities offer online doctoral programs without dissertation. We’ve compiled a list of them above. As more universities offer no dissertation doctorates, we will update the list.
It’s worth noting that while these programs do not require traditional dissertations, there will be a project (usually known as a Capstone) through which you demonstrate what you have learned. Each program should detail the capstone experience requirements and the opportunities you will have while enrolled.