Introduction to the Doctoral Programs

Information about the Doctoral program provided by the Penn State College of Education.

The doctoral programs in Higher Education at Penn State are rated among the best in the country every year.  Not only is this the result of compelling and diverse coursework, but due to the exceptional caliber of the program’s faculty; they are leading scholars in the field (please refer to faculty pages for additional information).  In addition, exemplary doctoral programs have exemplary alumni, and the graduates of Penn State’s doctoral programs are second to none.  Positions of graduates range, for example, from Director of the ERIC Clearinghouse on Higher Education to a faculty member in the University of Michigan’s Higher Education Program, to Chair of the Educational Leadership Department at Florida State University.  Our graduates are college presidents, top administrators in state-wide coordinating agencies, and vice presidents and deans of colleges and universities.  Others are involved in national foundations and associations.  Additionally, the publication activity of our graduates is noteworthy and extensive, and more than a few are leading scholars in areas of higher education.

Current students are encouraged to pursue academic work through core and specialized higher education courses, as well as via a minor (or cognate) within other academic fields at Penn State, including policy analysis, marketing, organizational behavior, sociology, educational psychology, women’s studies, and the like.  A majority of doctoral students are also involved directly in extant research efforts being conducted by faculty members on a variety of topics.  All of these connections emerge at the intersection of students’ interests and faculty members’ tutelage, and contribute to a robust and engaging educational experience.

ADMISSIONS UPDATE: As you know, January 10, 2018 was the last day to apply for the doctoral programs in Higher Education at University Park, Penn State.  If you applied, we want you know what to expect over the next few weeks.  First, please be sure that all of your admissions materials are submitted so that your application is complete and can be reviewed by the admissions committee.  Second, your materials will be reviewed by an admissions committee in the near future.  We will be in touch with you as soon as possible.  Finally, if you are admitted to a doctoral program, we will be in further contact with you about next steps.  In the meantime, please be aware that we are hosting a program for admitted students on February 23 and 24, 2018 at Penn State University Park in State College.  Thank you very much for your interest in the program, and we will be in touch in the near future!