May 23, 2024  
National University Volume 86B-2 Catalog - April 2024 
    
National University Volume 86B-2 Catalog - April 2024

Doctor of Philosophy in Data Science, PhD


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Doctor of Philosophy in Data Science


Description of Program


The Doctor of Philosophy in Data Science (PhD-DS) focuses on data analytics, statistical modeling, and machine learning. Data science involves mining data and maintaining, processing, modeling data, and communicating the results in a professional or scientific setting. The PhD-DS program will prepare you for research spanning big data analytics, artificial intelligence, and data-driven decision-making by exploring each stage of the data science life cycle in depth from an applied and a theoretical perspective.

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Learning Outcomes


  • Develop knowledge in data science based on a synthesis of current theories.
  • Explain theories, applications, and perspectives related to data science.
  • Evaluate theories of ethics and risk management in information systems.
  • Formulate strategies for data and knowledge management in global organizations.
  • Contribute to the body of theory and practice in data science.

Basis for Admissions


Admission to the Doctor of Philosophy in Data Science program requires a conferred master’s or doctoral degree from a regionally or nationally accredited academic institution.

Degree Requirements


The University may accept a maximum of 12 semester credit hours in transfer toward the doctoral degree for graduate coursework completed at an accredited college or university with a grade of “B” or better.

The PhD-DS degree program also has the following requirements:

  • GPA of 3.0 (letter grade of “B”) or higher
  • University approval of Dissertation Manuscript and Oral Defense completed
  • Submission of approved final dissertation manuscript to the University Registrar, including the original unbound manuscript and an electronic copy
  • Official transcripts on file for all transfer credit hours accepted by the University
  • All financial obligations must be met before the student will be issued their complimentary diploma

Dissertation Completion Pathway


The University’s 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, the University 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.  The University’s Dissertation Completion Pathway (DCP) offers a unique opportunity for students to complete their doctorate in one of the doctoral programs offered at the University (excluding the PhD in MFT, DMFT, and DNP). Students successfully meeting the entrance and application requirements will complete a minimum of 23 credit hours to earn their doctorate.

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Time to Completion


The University allows 7 years to complete all doctoral programs of 60 credits or less.

The median time to completion for this program is 49 months.

Time to completion varies depending upon the pace in which a student completes courses and the number of transfer credits accepted. As most 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 40 months.

Dissertation Process


Faculty assists each 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.

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