An international prognostic study, based on an acquisition model, of the degree Philosophiae Doctor (Ph.D.)

Keith Allan. Noble, Université D'Ottawa / University Of Ottawa, Université D'Ottawa / University Of Ottawa
This thesis documents an exploratory study of the degree Philosophiae Doctor (Ph.D.). It was prompted by the international existence of several contentious aspects of the degree (appropriateness, attrition, discrimination, employment, program emphasis, research competency evaluation, time to complete, unconventional programs). Because of the absence of any relevant theory, a model (Ph.D. acquisition model) was utilized as the conceptual framework for the investigation. This model incorporates
more » ... e three fundamental components of the degree (lengthy study, original research, thesis preparation), which were determined from the historical and regulatory literature. The research question was, " (w) hat effect, either positive or negative, do experts think altering the fundamental components of the degree Philosophiae Doctor, will most likely have on the resultant degree?" Data to answer this question was derived using the prognostic Delphi technique involving a panel of 67 (15 females, 52 males) English-speaking individuals. These professionals have extensive experience with the Ph.D. degree and they come from Australia, Canada, Great Britain, and the United States. In the Round 1 questionnaire the panelists identified Ph.D. degree related problems that were validated against the prescriptive literature (1960-1988). Round 2 generated predictive responses about the outcome of 18 hypothetical actions which address the most frequently raised problems in Round 1. A reiterative Round 3 resulted in acceptably stable prognoses for the majority of the responses. The implications of these prognoses, as they relate to the traditional and four non-traditional Ph.D. degrees and to university administrators are discussed.
doi:10.20381/ruor-15411 fatcat:p2jj4jfczbb33crzmx3s32ywqa