The primary goal of the doctoral program is to provide students with a complete and rigorous preparation to assume senior responsibilities for planning, teaching, directing, designing, implementing, evaluating, researching, and managing distance education programs. The following core learning outcomes have been identified:
- Development of analytic, evaluative, and procedural competencies in distance education as a field of study and practice, including historical and contemporary models and trends, and seminal research.
- Integration of the theoretical and practical application of available and prospective distance education delivery methods, their characteristics, economies and diseconomies, indications and contra-indications in practice, and their management, planning, and assessment requirements.
- Development of a theoretical framework regarding the use of technology-mediated instructional methods, for the practical application of these methods in distance-delivered courses.
- Development of analytic, evaluative, and procedural competencies in research design, practice, and dissemination, including oral presentation and writing skills.
- Application of various systems approaches to problem identification, analysis, and resolution, including management of complex operations, and program development and coordination skills.
- Development of a theoretical framework and practical skills in the use of assessment strategies and evaluation methodologies in distance education.
- Application of teaching and learning principles within the context of a variety of distance education modalities, both as a learner and as an educator.
- Development of a theoretical framework regarding leadership models and change theories within the context of distance education organizations.