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Courses | Ph.D. in Educational Studies

Below are the course requirements for this academic program. For more program details, including graduation requirements and learning outcomes, visit Biola's academic catalog.

General Academic Information

Classification of Students

Doctoral students will be classified as regular graduate students. All prerequisites must be satisfied before beginning doctoral study. Full-time study is defined as 6 credits per semester. All doctoral students must be enrolled as full-time students with at least 6 credits each semester. Exceptions may be granted by the doctoral office under extenuating circumstances. While most students are enrolled in a hybrid modality (including online, residency, and weekly in-person courses), a fully online modality may also be possible.

Coursework students enrolled only in TTDE 8950 Candidacy Exam Capstone are considered full-time students for that semester only.

Dissertation students are given full-time status for up to five semesters of TTDE 8960

Research Competence

Specific research skills appropriate for proposed dissertation study are to be demonstrated. Appropriate research tools and methods may include biblical languages, statistical analysis and qualitative research methodologies applicable to educational problems and issues. Deficiencies in research competence may result in additional program specialization components.

Grading System

Students wishing to obtain a doctoral degree must maintain a consistently high academic performance throughout their program. An overall grade point average of 3.25 on a 4.0 scale, is required. Only grades of A, B, or C earn graduate credit, although the course grade of B- or lower will trigger a review of the student's qualification to remain in the program, as noted below under Academic Probation and Dismissal. Grades of all students are recorded in the Office of the Registrar.

Academic Probation and Dismissal

Cumulative Grade Point Average: A student failing to maintain the minimum GPA of 3.25 will be placed on academic probation. The following semester, should the student not meet the minimum cumulative GPA (3.25), the Doctoral Program Faculty will review the matter and the student is subject to dismissal from the doctoral program. Students who receive one course grade of B- or lower will be reviewed by the Doctoral Program Faculty and are subject to Academic Probation. For a second course grade of B- or lower, the Doctoral Program Faculty will review the matter and the student is subject to dismissal from the doctoral program.

Timely Progress

Timely Progress in the Coursework Phase: During the coursework phase, doctoral students must complete a minimum of 12 credits toward the doctoral degree per academic year, except for the final year of coursework study.

Timely Progress in the Dissertation Phase: Students in the dissertation phase of doctoral studies must make timely progress toward the completion of a dissertation. Timely progress is made by achieving the relevant semester-by-semester milestone requirements related to the particular degree program as specified in the Program Handbook. If a Ph.D. student is not able to successfully defend their dissertation proposal by the fourth semester of dissertation studies, then the Doctoral Program Faculty will review the matter and the student may be subject for dismissal from the doctoral program.

Time Limit for Degrees

All course and academic requirements must be completed within seven years from the date of the student's first registration for graduate study in the doctoral program.

Failure to Register/Unofficial Withdrawal

Students who fail to register or pay the necessary portion of their tuition bill in any given semester without arranging for a leave of absence or formal withdrawal are dismissed from the program by default since official registration for that semester was never completed. It is the student's responsibility to be aware of course selection and registration procedures and deadlines, and program deadlines for paying tuition and fees.

Students who unofficially withdraw from the program and are later readmitted may be required to pay continuation fees for semesters during which they were not enrolled and are subject to doctoral program curriculum changes and graduation requirements implemented during their program inactivity.

Leave of Absence

Inactive students are those who have requested and been granted a Leave of Absence from the program. A Leave of Absence may be granted upon petition for change of status if there is deemed sufficient reason for interrupting the program and there is an intention to return to the program. A Leave of Absence longer than one semester will require withdrawal from the program and later a petition for readmission if the student wishes to regain active status. A Leave of Absence request must receive the approval of the Program Director. Students on leave are required to register for TTDE 8891 (a 1-credit fee may be assessed).


A person who has withdrawn or been dismissed from the doctoral program may request and file a reapplication to the program one-time, following a minimum of six months after termination. The reapplication request should include the reasons for requesting re-admittance as well as any other issues deemed relevant by the applicant. The letter should directly address the causes for dismissal, and present a realistic plan and time schedule for completion of the program, should readmission be granted. The application will be considered with the regular admissions pool of applicants.

Curriculum Requirements

The curriculum of the doctoral program is organized into two parts: a series of common required program courses taken by all students and elective courses from which the student will select those appropriate for a program of study. 

Program Courses
TTDE 8010Philosophical Issues in Educational Studies3
TTDE 8020Research I: Introduction to Educational Research3
TTDE 8030Research II: Qualitative Research3
TTDE 8040Research III: Quantitative Research and Statistics3
TTDE 8050Theological Research and Integration for Educational Studies3
TTDE 8800Internship in Higher Education3
TTDE 8950Candidacy Exam Capstone3
Elective Courses
Select a minimum of 15 credits of Elective Courses15
TTDE 8960Dissertation 16-15
Total Credits42-51

After passing the Candidacy Examination, the student will enroll in TTDE 8960 (3 credits) for up to five semesters. A student must be enrolled during the semester of graduation. Students who require more time must receive approval to enroll in TTDE 8970 (3 credits). Dissertation students are considered full-time for a maximum of five semesters of TTDE 8960 only.

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