November 18, 2013 — Vol. 29 No. 38
Research from Idaho State University was recently highlighted in an article in College Teaching which stated the importance of a Doctor of Arts versus a doctoral degree for future college educators.
The article, "The Tale of Two Degrees: The Need and Power of the Doctor of Arts" discussed the major differences between a doctoral degree and a doctor of arts degree. The doctorate of arts, which is regarded as the equivalent to a doctoral degree by the U.S. Department of Education, was founded in 1971 by the Carnegie Foundation to better train graduate students to teach in academic settings where more time is dedicated to teaching duties than research.
A doctor of arts program has a greater emphasis on the "scholarship of teaching and learning (SoTL), incorporating novel learning theories, and specialized, effective pedagogical practices."
Doctor of Arts degrees are rare in universities; however, ISU has a long history of producing doctor of arts graduates. Students working towards a doctor of arts participate in supervised teaching internships which improves competencies as future college educators. According to the article, one student compared previous teaching experiences with current internships through the program and emphasized that his previous experiences "paled in comparison to the amount of responsibility and knowledge gained from the internships."
Statistics gathered over 30 years from ISU found that graduates of these programs are well-qualified to enter into faculty positions at a wide range of higher education institutions. These jobs include an equal mix of tenure and non-tenure positions, with many eventually moving into administrative positions.
The article appears in volume 61, issue 4, 2013 of College Teaching and was written by Kinta Serve, Nathan Clements, Kaleb Heinrich and Rosemary J. Smith.
For more information or to read the article in its entirety visit http://dx.doi.org/10.1080/87567555.2013.795511.