Oct 07, 2022
The PhD in Public Policy and Administration program is designed to prepare students to address the challenges of governance and service delivery that exist both in the U.S. and around the world. Coursework explores public policy theory, research, and practice in a global context, enabling students to gain expertise in effective U.S. policy management and the ability to apply those insights to problems facing the world at large. The PhD in Public Policy and Administration can position students for career opportunities in research, higher education, or administration in the private, public, or nonprofit sector. Students in this program may choose a specialization that fits their personal and/or career objectives.
At the end of the program, students will be able to:
- Discuss leadership concepts and theories that have been used to effectively lead and manage in the public sector.
- Analyze evidence-based research, theories, and models used to promote participation in public and nonprofit policy processes.
- Develop solutions for problems related to public policy and public administration using theory and research.
- Ethically apply the major theories and concepts of public policy and public administration within organizations.
- Evaluate models and best practices utilizing diverse perspectives in local, state, national, and international public agencies by using evidence-based research.
These previous PhD in Public Policy and Administration specializations are no longer accepting new students. Current students in these specializations must complete their programs of study in accordance with Walden’s Time-to-Degree Completion policies.
Minimum Degree Requirements
- Doctoral Writing Assessment
- Professional Development Plan and Program of study
- Foundation course (3 cr.)
- Core courses (25 cr.)
- Research courses (20 cr.)
- Completion of the Doctoral Capstone
- Doctoral support course (5 cr.)
- Dissertation writing courses (5 cr. per term for a minimum of four terms; taken continuously until completion)
- Quarter Plans
- Four residencies
Foundation Course (3 cr.)
Foundation Research Sequence (15 cr.)
Courses composing the Foundation Research Sequence are conducted online and require weekly readings, participation in discussions, and assignment completion. Course instructors guide discussions and evaluate discussion and application assignments. RSCH 8110 must be completed prior to Residency 2 of the academic residencies. RSCH 8210 and RSCH 8310 must be completed prior to beginning the dissertation or attending Residency 3.
Advanced Research Course (5 cr.)
All PhD students are required to complete one advanced-level research course that mirrors the methodology of their intended dissertations. The university offers three advanced courses; individual programs may have other advanced options. Students should refer to their specific programs of study to determine program-specific requirements.
One of the following three courses is required:
- Complete Residency 1 as soon as you begin your program; should be completed in Term 1 or Term 2.
- Complete Residency 2 within 18 months of your start date or linked to your registration for or completion of your first research course.
- Complete Residency 3 by the end of your third year.
- Complete residency 4 after your prospectus is approved as follows:
- Optional: Complete a PhD dissertation intensive (DRWI 8500) during your dissertation. Contact Student Success Advising to register.
Completion of the Doctoral Capstone
- PPPA 8115 - Writing a Quality Prospectus
- PPPA 9000 - Dissertation
Students take this course for a minimum of four terms and are continuously enrolled until completion of their doctoral study with final chief academic officer (CAO) approval. Most Walden students who complete their dissertation/doctoral study take more than 2 years to do so.
To complete a doctoral dissertation, students must obtain the academic approval of several independent evaluators including their committee, the University Research Reviewer, and the Institutional Review Board; pass the Form and Style Review; gain approval at the oral defense stage; and gain final approval by the chief academic officer. Students must also publish their dissertation on ProQuest before their degree is conferred. Learn more about the dissertation process in the Dissertation Guidebook. In general, students are continuously registered in the dissertation course until they complete an approved dissertation, which usually requires more than the minimum terms in the dissertation course shell.
Students undertake courses in the following sequence.
*Students take this course for a minimum of four terms and are continuously enrolled until completion of their dissertation with final chief academic officer (CAO) approval. In general, students are continuously registered in the dissertation course until they complete their capstone project and it is approved. This usually takes longer than the minimum required terms in the dissertation course shell.
To complete a dissertation, students must obtain the academic approval of several independent evaluators including their committee, the University Research Reviewer, and the Institutional Review Board; pass the Form and Style Review; gain approval at the oral defense stage; and gain final approval by the chief academic officer. Students must also publish their dissertation on ProQuest before their degree is conferred. Learn more about the dissertation process in the Dissertation Guidebook.
Master of Philosophy (Embedded Degree)
Walden awards the Master of Philosophy (MPhil) degree to recognize PhD students for academic achievement leading up to their dissertation. With an MPhil, students will be able to demonstrate to employers and others that they have an advanced knowledge base in their field of study as well as proficiency in research design and evaluation.
- Students are eligible to apply for this credential while continuing their PhD program once they have completed:
- All required PhD core courses (or KAMs)
- All required PhD specialization courses (or KAMs)
- All required doctoral research and advanced research courses
- Program prospectus development course
- Residencies 1, 2, and 3
- A minimum 3.0 GPA is mandatory.
- The MPhil requires a minimum of 45 quarter credits. Maximum transfer of credit varies by program but is not to exceed 50% of the overall, or embedded, program requirements.
Doctoral Writing Assessment
Students who start or readmit to doctoral programs at Walden University in the university catalog for academic year 2017 or later will complete the university’s required doctoral writing assessment. Designed to evaluate incoming doctoral students’ writing skills, this assessment aims to help prepare incoming doctoral students to meet the university’s expectations for writing at the doctoral level.
8-Year Maximum Time Frame
Students have up to 8 years to complete their doctoral degree requirements (see Enrollment Requirements). Students may petition to extend the 8-year maximum time frame, but an extension is not guaranteed.