Dr. David W. Rausch, Program Director
Dr. Elizabeth K. Crawford, Program Advisor
Ms. Becca McCashin, Program Coordinator
(423) 425-5445 or by email at email@example.com
The multidisciplinary Leadership and Decision-Making Doctoral Program is designed to equip participants with an understanding of the relationship that learning plays in the leadership process; develop reflective practitioners in a variety of organizations; and focus on the interwoven nature of leadership, decision-making, and learning; emphasizing the proficiency that individuals will need as they pursue the challenges of organizational change. Participants will demonstrate competency in the following program domains: Leadership and Learning, Research and Measurement, Organizational Effectiveness and Innovation, Decision-Making, and Communication.
Each participant is required to successfully complete a foundational course during the initial Summer semester. All required courses are offered via hybrid delivery (face-to-face and Virtual Classroom). Following successful completion of the foundational course, each participant is required to enroll in a sequence of core courses (6 credit hours per semester) year-round (Fall, Spring, and Summer) until the core is completed. Once the core program has been completed, each participant works to completed elective requirements, the Comprehensive Assessment, Pre-Dissertation Seminar, and Dissertation research.
The Doctor of Philosophy: Leadership and Decision-Making degree requires a minimum of 76 credit hours:
Learning and Leadership Integration and Assimilation Process: 1 credit hour
Core (cohort experience): 39 credit hours
Electives: 18 credit hours
Pre-Dissertation Seminar course: 3 credit hours
Dissertation Research: 15 credit hours (minimum)
Applicants are required to meet two levels of admission: admission to the Graduate School and admission to the doctoral program.
Admission to the Graduate School requires:
1. Receipt of a Master’s degree from a regionally accredited institution (or foreign equivalent)
2. Grade point average of 3.0 (minimum) on all graduate coursework
Graduate School Application Process
1. A completed Graduate School Application
2. Payment of a $35 Domestic; $40 International nonrefundable application fee
3. An official transcript from each college or university previously attended, even if a degree was not awarded. These transcripts must be sent directly from the institutions to the Graduate School Office.
International applicants must supply authorized school or university records with certified translations if the records are in a language other than English. Translations must include descriptive titles of courses studied and grades gained in final examinations.
4. Submission of official scores on the Graduate Record Exam (GRE) General Test. The General Test includes the following sub-tests: Verbal, Quantitative, and Analytical Writing. The GRE must have been taken within the previous five years prior to application for scores to be accepted.
Applicants whose native language is not English will also need to provide certification of English proficiency. Official scores on the Test of English as a Foreign Language (TOEFL) or International English Language Testing System (IELTS) must be submitted. A TOEFL score of 550 (213 on the computer-based test, or 79 on the Internet-based test) or above, or an IELTS score of 6.0 or higher, is required unless the applicant meets the conditions outlined in “Graduate Admission Tests” under “Admission Requirements” to apply for an exemption to the TOEFL/IELTS requirement.
Admission to the Doctoral Program
The Leadership and Decision-Making Doctoral Program requires a minimum of two years of professional experience, preferably in a leadership role.
Doctoral Program Application Process
A completed Program Application including:
- Statement of Purpose Essay
- Current Resume/CV
- Three (3) recommendations
- Personal interview*
*Applicants who reach the second phase of the application process will be invited to a video conference interview.
Application Review Process
The Admission Committee considers all required items holistically in the admission process. A select group of applicants who reach the second phase of the application review process will be invited to a video conference interview. Upon completion of the admissions interview, the Admission Committee will recommend to the Program Director the approval or denial of the applicant. The Program Director will submit the admission recommendations to the Graduate School. Applicants will be notified of their admission status by the UTC Graduate School.
Program of Study
The participant will file the Program of Study upon successful completion of the following requirements:
1. Successful completion of 13 credit hours
2. Successful achievement of a cumulative Grade Point Average of 3.0 or above in the doctoral program with no more than two grades below a “B” grade
Admission to Candidacy
The participant will be admitted to degree candidacy upon successful completion of the following requirements:
1. Academic good standing
2. Successful completion of all required and elective credit hours (except LEAD 7700r Pre-Dissertation Seminar)
3. Successful achievement of a cumulative Grade Point Average of 3.0 or above in the doctoral program with no more than two grades below a “B” grade
4. Successful completion/defense of the Comprehensive Assessment
1. Successful completion of 43 required credit hours and 18 elective credit hours
3. A cumulative grade point average of 3.0 in the doctoral program with no more than two doctoral grades of “B”
4. Successful completion/defense of the Comprehensive Assessment
5. Successful completion of LEAD 7999r Dissertation (15 credit hours minimum)
6. Successful Final Defense of the Dissertation and approval by the Graduate School
Program Time Limit
There is a ten-year limit for completing all degree requirements for the doctorate in Leadership and Decision-Making. All doctoral coursework and the successful defense of the dissertation must be completed within ten years. The ten-year time frame begins with the earliest course applied to the doctoral program of study, including any applicable transfer credits.
Maintaining Active Enrollment
Each participant is required to successfully complete a required foundational course during the initial Summer semester. Following successful completion of the foundational course, each participant is required to enroll in a sequence of core courses (6 credit hours per semester) year-round (Fall, Spring, and Summer) until the core is completed. Enrollment in more or less than 6 core credit hours (at UTC or other institution) requires Program Director/Advisor pre-approval in writing.
Once the core program of study has been completed, the participant is required to remain continuously enrolled in course work (between 3-6 elective credit hours per semester). If a participant enrolls in approved elective coursework at another institution and does not enroll at UTC for the given semester, the participant must provide the LEAD Program Office with official proof of enrollment by the end of the UTC registration period in order to satisfy continuous enrollment standards.
Participants who have successfully completed all pre-candidacy requirements with the exception of the Comprehensive Assessment are required to maintain continuous enrollment by enrolling in LEAD 7995 Comprehensive Assessment Continuance (minimum of 3 credit hours) in order to prepare for successful defense of the Comprehensive Assessment. Failure to complete the Comprehensive Assessment within two semesters after finalizing the core program of study may result in program dismissal.
Upon admission to candidacy, the candidate is required to enroll in LEAD 7700r Pre-Dissertation Seminar (3 credit hours). Upon successful completion of LEAD 7700r, the candidate is required to maintain continuous enrollment in LEAD 7999r Dissertation (minimum of 2 credit hours) every semester through the successful defense of the Dissertation and acceptance of the Dissertation by the Graduate School. Failure to remain continuously enrolled will result in program dismissal.
Requesting a Leave of Absence
After successful completion of the foundational course, a participant/candidate may request a one-time leave of absence. If approved at the program level, the request will be submitted for review to the Graduate School. The leave of absence may not exceed one calendar year (maximum of three semesters). All degree requirements must be completed within a ten-year time frame.
If the participant has not yet advanced to candidacy prior to the leave of absence, s/he will not be permitted to enroll in any course work during the leave of absence (core, elective, or transfer credits). If the participant has advanced to candidacy prior to the leave of absence, s/he is not permitted to conduct any material work on the Dissertation or collect any data during the leave of absence. The participant’s academic standing will not be affected by the leave of absence. If a participant fails to enroll once the leave of absence has expired, s/he will be dismissed from the program.
The complete Leave of Absence policy, including the pregnancy/childbirth/adoption leave policy, is available in the Graduate School Academic Policies.
Request to Withdraw
If a participant elects to withdraw completely from the doctoral program, s/he must notify the Program Director in writing of his/her intent to withdraw and drop any currently enrolled courses. The participant is accountable for fulfillment of any outstanding financial or academic responsibilities. Once withdrawn (or dismissed), a participant would need to apply to the doctoral program in order to return. Readmission would require full participation in the program admission process and all regulations in effect at the time.
Each doctoral participant is required to complete a minimum number of elective credits. Elective courses may only be taken during the core program of study with approval from the participant’s Program Director/Advisor.
The participant, with Program Director/Advisor approval, will identify and successfully complete coursework in subject matter related to his/her professional practice. All elective courses (LEAD and non-LEAD) must meet minimum eligibility requirements and must be approved by the Program Director/Advisor. The majority of participants begin elective coursework once the core program of study has been completed.
Minimum Elective Courses Requirements:
- Credits must be taken for graduate credit (5000-level or above) from a regionally accredited institution
- Credits must have documented objectives or outcomes that are consistent with the graduate level learning (higher order thinking skills)
- Credits must be academic in nature (not internship, practicum, continuing education, etc.)
- Credits must be assigned a letter grade of “B” or higher
- Credits cannot have been used for a previous Master’s degree
- Credits must be approved by the Program Director/Advisor and Graduate School Dean
Transfer Credit Policy:
- Any transfer credits cannot exceed 15 graduate hours (5 courses) and are limited to elective credit
- Any transfer credit requests for previous coursework should be submitted to the Program Director/Advisor, along with the course syllabus from the semester the course was taken. Previous transfer credits must have been taken within five years of entrance to the program.
- Any additional transfer credit must be approved in advance and requests must be accompanied by a course syllabus (the most recent version available, no more than a year old) and an official transcript must be submitted upon completion and approved courses.
The following types of courses will not be accepted as elective credit toward the doctoral program:
- Courses designed as bridging or leveling work for Master’s programs (Foundations of Accounting, Concepts in Economics, etc.)
- Courses that are very similar in scope to core coursework (Principles of Instructional Design, Organizational Effectiveness, etc.)
- Courses offered at the undergraduate level (4000) with a graduate (5000) option
Each participant will complete and defend a dissertation. The dissertation represents the culminating project for the degree. In the completion of the dissertation, the candidate will show evidence of competence in conceptualizing, carrying out, and reporting research. Doctoral candidates in the Leadership and Decision-Making program are required to be continuously enrolled in a minimum of 2 graduate credits (maximum of 6 graduate credits) every semester (Fall, Spring, and Summer) until the dissertation has been successfully defended and approved by the Graduate School. Failure to meet continuous enrollment standards may result in program dismissal.
Dissertation Committee Formation
The Dissertation Committee is comprised of four members: the Chair, the Methodologist, and two additional committee members. The Chair and at least one additional member must be members of the Learning and Leadership core faculty and possess full graduate faculty status. It is the responsibility of the Chair to guide the candidate in the selection of the remainder of the committee. The Methodologist is typically a member of the LEAD faculty and must possess “Full Membership” graduate faculty status. Additionally, every committee member must hold a minimum of “Special” graduate faculty status at UTC. Relevance and expertise regarding the Dissertation topic and Methodologist is the rationale for selection of all members; the committee should include faculty whom the Chair and candidate believe can make substantive contributions to the candidate’s Dissertation. When appropriate, the Chair is encouraged to invite a committee member from an academic unit outside the Learning and Leadership department to serve as the fourth committee member (External Reviewer). All members of the Dissertation committee agree to utilize the Dissertation course space, hosting on the university’s Learning Management System (LMS) UTC Learn. The Program Director/Advisor and the Dean of the Graduate School shall approve the membership of the Dissertation Committee.