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A Study on the Current Status of the Professional Doctorates in Taiwan’s Universities - EdD and DBA
Doctor of Philosophy
Doctor of Education (EdD)
Doctor of Business Administration (DBA)
In response to the era of mass higher education and the global competition of the knowledge economy, many countries had strengthened the connection between higher education and industry, and the mode of knowledge production was also changed. The traditional PhD training model has been challenged. Since the late 1980s, there has been a trend for professional doctoral degrees to increase significantly in US, UK, and Australia. In recent years, our doctoral education has faced trilateral difficulties such as enrollment difficulties, education and employment mismatch, and talent gaps. The government has also promoted curriculum and degree tracking policies. It is necessary to understand the current status of professional doctorates in Taiwan’s universities. The purpose of this study is to explore the current status of professional doctorates in Taiwan’s universities, focusing on the Doctor of Education ( EdD) and the Doctor of Business Administration (DBA). It is based on a review of the literature about the professional doctorates of USA, UK, and Australia, document analysis of the professional doctorate programs, and interviews with 28 professors and students. Based on the research purpose and findings, the conclusions of the study are as follows: 1.The educational model of the Professional doctorates: (1) Taiwan’s universities pay insufficient attention to the titles of the degree. The Chinese titles of the professional doctoral degrees are not differentiated from the academic PhD, and the information on the Chinese and English titles of the degrees are not clearly disclosed. (2) It’s hard to find significant differences between EdD and PhD programs. They are different from the EdD programs of the well-known foreign universities. Therefore, there is no genuine EdD program in Taiwan. (3) The DBA programs in Taiwan’s universities are similar to the DBA programs of the universities listed in the literature review. However, publishing of academic papers on SSCI journals is required for graduation of the domestic DBA programs. 2. The reason for establishment of professional doctorates: (1) The conception of EdD degree is not clearly known in the field of Education. The title of the degree is not well planned and linked with the educational goals and the curriculum of the doctoral program. (2) The professional degree DBA gains a good understanding in the field of management. The reasons for the establishment of the DBA programs can also be clearly stated. (3) The government's policy to promote the curriculum tracking and industry-university cooperation is one of the factors affecting the establishment of domestic professional doctoral programs. 3.The value and benefits of professional doctorates: (1) It helps to connect to the international trend of higher education and strengthen the industry-university cooperation. (2) It contributes the diversification of doctoral education and cultivating different talents for the society; and it can also meet the current situation of domestic doctoral programs enrollment, providing opportunities for in-service professionals to pursue further education. (3) It meets the need of the target students, helps the doctoral program enrollment, and establishes a network and exchange platform of alumni from industries, introducing resources to support universities. Moreover, it can also cultivate professors of practice to enhance students’ employability. (4) The PD program combines both theories and practices, to meet the learning needs of the in-service students, and through the integration of practices and theories, it also helps students to innovate and transform in their professional life. 4. The problems and challenges for developing professional doctorates in Taiwan: (1) The academic supremacy in the universities and the social values and perceptions of diplomas would be a big challenge. (2) Ministry of Education has not established a basic regulation and quality assurance mechanism for professional doctorates in Taiwan. (3) The market of doctoral education is still limited in the domestic area, therefore, it’s difficult to develop the professional doctorates. (4) Professors with practical experiences are insufficient, and the curriculum, teaching and research training are to be adjusted. Based on the research findings and conclusions, some specific suggestions for the development of professional doctoral education in Taiwan are provided for the education authority, universities and future studies. These could contribute to the future development of professional doctoral education in Taiwan.
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