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Pursuing a PhD of Education in Instructional Technology

written by: BMeredith•edited by: Laurie Patsalides•updated: 7/31/2009

The field of technology is the fastest growing in the country, if not the world. Likewise, the pursuit of a PhD of Education in Instructional Technology is also among one of the fastest growing degrees pursued. This article highlights some interesting information and facts for your consideration.

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    The PhD in Instructional Technology: An Informational Guide

    The fastest growing degree in post graduate online learning is the PhD of Education in Instructional Technology. Much like its master's counterpart, it would appear this is a degree uniquely suited for the online learning environment. In the discussion that follows you will get some insight into this degree, its implications for the job market and other pertinent information. It is this writer’s hope you will find this helpful as you look to continue your postgraduate education.

    As is the case with any research into the decision making process, you should first understand a little about the degree and its implications. This particular degree takes on different shapes depending upon where you pursue it. An excellent link is found at e-learners.com under online doctoral degrees. A good example of this is at University of Phoenix where you will find it listed as the Doctor of Education in Educational Leadership/Educational Technology. While at Capella University you will find it listed as PhD-IT. Then at Walden University it is listed as Ed.S. in Educational Technology. I mention this because making sure you are in the right program is essential and it is easy to take a wrong turn. There are others, of courses and you can continue the search at another website called AllEducationSchools.com. This particular website has a wealth of information for research and discovery.

    So what is this degree and what is its function? In the field of education this is defined as the ability to develop and lead technology integration into higher education learning environments. According to Friedman in his book “The World Is Flat,” technology and its advances and integrations have brought the global community together and as such have to some degree leveled the playing field. As colleges and universities seek to expand their population base with the advancement of distance learning, this will become an even more sought after degree. This degree is not just limited to leadership either. It will play an important part in the research and development of both program and infrastructure within the higher education environment.

    Online education in this particular field is growing by leaps and bounds. It is important, however, that time be spent investigating the accreditations and viabilities of those offering this degree. For instance, you should shy away from any online school that does not require at least the minimum of a master’s degree. There are some who only require a bachelor’s degree, but if they lack accreditation they are nothing more than diploma mills and will not serve you well in your future endeavors. The major online schools like Phoenix, Capella, A.I.U. and Walden all require a master’s degree to be accepted into the program.

    From this point you should look at cost. The item of note here is their proposed length of program, length of sessions and tuition, which is either per session or per credit. The per credit types tend to be more expensive. The other point to remember here is if it is by session it costs the same whether you take one, two or more classes so monitor these carefully to get the best bang for your buck. Typically an online PhD costs between 40 and 50 thousand dollars.

    In the next article we will discuss the specifics of this degree as it relates to structure and inherent advantages of online learning for this degree.