in higher education at Rutgers University-New Brunswick offers focused study of the complexities
of colleges and universities, their missions, contexts, challenges, and
successes. This interdisciplinary degree program brings together distinguished
higher education scholars from the Graduate School of Education (GSE), the
Edward J. Bloustein School of Planning and Public Policy (EJBSPPP), the School of Arts and
Sciences (SAS), the School of Communication and Information (SC&I), the
School of Environmental and Biological Sciences (SEBS), and the School of
Management and Labor Relations (SMLR). Affiliated faculty members are higher
education experts in the fields of education, law, communication,
organizational studies, public policy, and economics.
The Ph.D. in higher education program prepares higher education researchers who
will take their scholarship, knowledge, and research skills into a range of
higher education settings such as universities and colleges, state governing
and coordinating boards, federal government, independent higher education
organizations, consulting groups, not-for-profit organizations, and
Learning Outcomes and Curriculum
The Ph.D. in higher education curriculum is informed by the following
learning outcomes. Graduates of the higher education Ph.D. program will:
- conduct original, rigorous research and interpret and
evaluate findings from other research studies;
be knowledgeable about higher education organizations;
systems; governance; leadership; analysis and planning; research, assessment,
and evaluation; and communication;
understand current and developing trends and issues facing
colleges and universities; understand and effectively negotiate the complexities of
higher education in terms of institutional type, control, contexts,
stakeholders, and constituencies; and
provide leadership, insight, and expertise at the
institutional or related higher education settings in which they work.
Ph.D. in higher education students will complete an approved program of study
that includes, at minimum: the higher education core (18 credits), additional
graduate coursework (15 credits), research core (15 credits), and independent
research (24 credits). Students must pass qualifying examinations to advance to
candidacy, and the dissertation must be approved by the candidate's faculty
committee. No more than 24 credits of coursework outside of Graduate School-New
Brunswick may be applied toward the 72 minimum credits required for the Ph.D.
in higher education.
Students who are admitted to the Ph.D. program in higher education will be
eligible to earn a master of arts (M.A.) degree while working toward the Ph.D.
Only students admitted to the Ph.D. program will be eligible for the M.A.
degree. Applications by prospective students seeking only an M.A. degree will
be rejected without review.
Students will be eligible to receive an M.A. upon completion of 30 credits
taken at Rutgers that are eligible to be counted toward the Ph.D. in higher
education curriculum requirements. These credits will be accumulated while
pursuing the requirements of the Ph.D. program in higher education and will
adhere to the guidelines related to transfer of credits and other policies for
M.A. degrees as described in this catalog. The student must also successfully
pass the M.A. comprehensive examination. The M.A. comprehensive examination may
be administered as one component of the Ph.D. qualifying examination; a student
who fails other parts of the qualifying examination but passes this part will
have passed the comprehensive examination for the M.A.
The Higher Education Program plans to offer graduate certificates in Academic
Leadership and Governance and Organizational Contexts of Higher Education. Each
graduate certificate program entails successful completion of 12 credits of
required coursework. Admitted Ph.D. students may complete one or more graduate
certificates during the course of their Ph.D. study. Other individuals
interested in earning a graduate certificate must apply for admission.
Successful completion of a graduate certificate does not result in subsequent
admission to the Ph.D. in higher education program.
The required qualifications for admission into the Ph.D. in higher education
program are an earned baccalaureate degree from an accredited college or
university, strong undergraduate GPA, and strong GRE scores. Applicants with a
baccalaureate degree and little to no higher education experience may be
admitted in cases of extraordinary academic promise and demonstrated commitment
to research and scholarship in higher education.
The preferred qualifications for admission to the Ph.D. program are, in
addition to the above, an earned master's degree in higher education or a
closely related area; a strong graduate GPA; 3-5 years full-time, post-master's
degree experience in higher education setting(s); and higher education research
and/or assessment experience.
Prospective Ph.D. in higher education students may apply online at gradstudy.rutgers.edu. A completed application
includes: Rutgers application for graduate admission, official transcripts for
all postsecondary coursework, GRE scores (within the last five years), personal
statement, writing sample, and three letters of reference (at least two from
full-time faculty members). Prior to admission, applicants must complete an
individual interview with at least one higher education program faculty