Description of Program
Instructional design (ID) is a craft – a blend of science and art. Students who earn the Doctor of Philosophy in Instructional Design (PhD-ID) will make research-based contributions to the learning sciences through the synthesis of research, theory, and practice. Such contributions will relate to the ID competencies established by the International Board of Standards for Training, Performance, and Instruction (IBSTPI), the Association for Talent Development (ATD), and the standards of the Association for Educational Communication and Technology (AECT).
Click here for potential career opportunities within the PhD-ID.
**Note: Program availability may vary by state - please contact the Enrollment Office for more information**
- Support collaboration among diverse stakeholders invested in complex design processes and products
- Synthesize different principles, theories, and analyses for design projects
- Construct strategies to address ethical, legal, and political factors influencing design and development solutions
- Contribute to the theoretical body of knowledge in instructional design
Basis for Admissions
A conferred graduate degree from a regionally accredited academic institution or an international institution determined to be equivalent through an approved evaluation service.
The PhD Program may be completed in 60 semester credit hours. Additional credit hours may be allowed as needed to complete dissertation research in alignment with the Satisfactory Academic Progress (SAP) and Academic Maximum Time Frame policies. Students who do not complete their program within these requirements may be dismissed.
NCU may accept a maximum of 12 semester credit hours in transfer toward the doctoral degree for graduate coursework completed toward a doctoral degree at an accredited college or university with a grade of “B” or better. Transfer credit is only awarded for course work that is evaluated to be substantially equivalent in content with the required course work for the EdD program. See the Transfer Credit Policy for additional information.
Dissertation Completion Pathway
The NCU mission is dedicated to assisting students in achieving their academic aspirations and helping them become valuable contributors to their community and profession. To support our mission, NCU now offers a dissertation completion pathway for students who have successfully completed their doctoral coursework and achieved doctoral candidacy at a previous institution but were unable to complete their dissertation. NCU’s Dissertation Completion Pathway (DCP) offers a unique opportunity for students to complete their doctorate in one of the doctoral programs offered at NCU (excluding the PhD in MFT, DMFT, DNP, and DHA). Students successfully meeting the entrance and application requirements will complete a minimum of 23 credit hours to earn their doctorate.
Click below for more information on the
Time to Completion
NCU allows 7 years to complete all doctoral programs of 60 credits or less.
The median time to completion for this program is 45 months.
Time to completion varies depending upon the pace in which a student completes courses and the number of transfer credits accepted. As most NCU students are working adults, balancing educational, professional, and personal commitments, our academic and finance advisors will work with you to develop a program schedule that works best for your needs.
Students following the preferred schedule designed by the Dean for this program, and applying no transfer credits, can expect to finish in as little as 37 months.
Certification and Licensing
The School of Education serves educational leaders by providing online graduate studies in education to reach worldwide populations. The PhD-ID program is designed to reach national and international markets and does not purport to provide licensure or certification in any particular state or country.
Faculty assists each NCU Doctoral student to reach this high goal through a systematic process leading to a high-quality completed dissertation. A PhD dissertation is a scholarly documentation of research that makes an original contribution to the field of study. This process requires care in choosing a topic, documenting its importance, planning the methodology, and conducting the research. These activities lead smoothly into the writing and oral presentation of the dissertation.
A doctoral candidate must be continuously enrolled throughout the series of dissertation courses. Dissertation courses are automatically scheduled and accepted without a break in scheduling to ensure that students remain in continuous enrollment throughout the dissertation course sequence. If additional time is required to complete any of the dissertation courses, students must re-enroll and pay the tuition for that course. Continuous enrollment will only be permitted when students demonstrate progress toward completing dissertation requirements. The Dissertation Committee determines progress.
This program can be completed with a minimum of 60 credit hours, but may require additional credit hours, depending on the time required to complete the dissertation research. If needed, additional courses will be added to the student degree program in alignment with the SAP and Academic Maximum Time to Completion policies. Students who do not complete their program in accordance with these policies may be dismissed.