Introducing American Public University System’s First Applied Doctoral Programs

By: Dr. Patricia Campbell, Dean, Graduate Studies, Research, & Innovation

At the 2017 annual APUS Commencement ceremonies on May 13, Dr. Karan Powell proudly announced that on July 1, 2017, APUS will begin taking applications for two new applied doctoral programs in global security and strategic intelligence. As a result, APUS moves from being a master’s-level to doctoral-granting institution, a significant milestone that furthers our continuing mission of creating high-quality programs focused on educating the nation’s military and public service communities.

These two new programs will help emerging leaders become agents of change and executive decision-makers by integrating theory with critical analysis and professional practice. They will simultaneously prepare students to extend the knowledge in the discipline and analyze the implications of policy decisions with a sophisticated lens. Each is cohort-based, designed expressly for adult learners and structured to leverage best practices in higher education around persistence and completion for doctoral programs.

While the professional practice programs have minor variations, the general structure includes 2 1/2 years of coursework, three brief residencies and dissertation research. The cohort structure is designed to create a learning community that provides mutual support and accountability to assist in keeping students on track and promoting student success. Course progression features some elective options and milestones, creating a degree path for completion within approximately three to four years. The program integrates practice, applied research, and multidisciplinary approaches in an effort to solve or enhance understanding of the complex problems facing students and faculty in their communities and areas of professional practice.

The Global Security program is an interdisciplinary degree that explores the complex global security environment. It embraces a scholar-practitioner model of education to prepare the next generation of global leaders to advance academic and professional practice in the field. While it focuses on the role global actors play in formulating and implementing international, bilateral and state policies, norms, and practices of global scope and concern, the program also addresses the impact of global security issues on domestic security and foreign policy.

The Strategic Intelligence program is a multidisciplinary degree that addresses intellectual, cultural, and organizational challenges in the emerging field of intelligence studies. Its focus is on domestic intelligence topics and issues, and on activities and relationships with actors in the global community of strategic concern to the US.

Many colleagues significantly contributed to accomplishing this important milestone for APUS, one which could only have been reached with the full support and encouragement of our leadership, administration and Board of Trustees. The collective efforts of School of Security and Global Studies Dean Dr. Mark Riccardi, his program directors and faculty were all critical to developing these programs, and especially Associate Dean of Graduate Studies, Dr. Jennifer Douglas.

In late June, we invite prospective students to join us in person in Washington, DC, or virtually in early July to learn more about each of the new programs. Attendees will be able to meet our school deans, world-class faculty and admissions staff to learn about the curriculum, academic rigor, start dates, tuition costs and more. This is also a great networking opportunity to meet fellow students! These events are open to all professionals with a master’s degree, or who expect master’s degree conferral by September 2017.

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