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Doctoral Degree Programs (Ph.D.) - University Park

The Pennsylvania State University Workforce Education and Development (WFED) program offers a graduate degree program leading to degree of Doctor of Philosophy (Ph.D.). Students interested in this program should be employed in or aspire to be employed as faculty, trainers, administrators, or researchers in education-for-work settings such as business, industry, health fields, occupational home economics, cooperative education, youth apprenticeship, or employment and training.

The Ph.D. degree requires, among other matters:

  • Maintenance of satisfactory scholarship, with a minimum grade-point average of 3.00 for work done at the University;
  • Completion of Scholarship and Research Integrity (SARI) requirements;
  • Attainment of doctoral candidacy status;
  • High-level competence in the use of the English language, including reading, writing, and speaking;
  • Over some twelve-month period during the interval between admission to the Ph.D. program and completion of the Ph.D. program, enrollment at least two semesters (summer sessions are not included) as a registered full-time student engaged in academic work at the University Park campus;
  • Completion of research requirements, in lieu of typical communication and foreign language requirements for most Ph.D. programs;
  •  Completion of the Ph.D. program, including acceptance of the doctoral dissertation, within eight years from the date of attainment of doctoral candidacy status; and
  • Successful completion of a comprehensive examination, acceptance of a dissertation, and completion of a final oral examination for the Ph.D. degree.

Requirements of emphases within the Ph.D. program can be found in the WFED Handbook. To find out what WFED graduate courses are offered and when, please see our course list.

Ph.D. students are eligible to compete for a limited number of graduate assistantships that may become available to serve the research, teaching, and service missions of the WFED program. The regular graduate faculty for the WFED program consider applications in the light of faculty needs and availability of University funding for graduate assistantships. Applications are due on January 29 for assistantships that could be awarded for the upcoming academic year. For more information, see the Graduate Assistantship Application.

If you are ready to proceed to the application but have NOT read the Graduate School requirements, please visit their website.

If you have read the Graduate School requirements and are ready to apply, you may proceed to the application.

For more information on the program and faculty, please contact the WFED degree graduate staff assistant:

Susan Berzonsky
Learning and Performance Systems department
301 Keller Building
University Park, PA 16802
Phone: (814) 863-0095
[email protected]