Time to Trade Up to a PhD Degree

If you have a Masters Degree in any field, trade up to a PhD in two years….The Blue Marble University 2 year online Dissertation-Only PhD.

Blue Marble University, the best virtual university in the world, offers a unique online Dissertation-Only PhD program that you can complete in two years.

So, if you already hold a Masters degree in ANY field, you can easily and economically trade up to a PhD by completing an independent work without taking any additional courses.

An overview of the program can be found on our Programs description page: https://bluemarbleuniversity.com/academics/departments-and-degree-programs/

For this program,  we follow the European and Asian traditions of long standing that a student who creates a body of original work related to technology research or an original work in the field of the humanities can be considered for the award of a doctoral degree. While typically, no time requirement is associated with award of the doctoral degree, the usual time requirement in Europe and Asia is 3-8 years. However, in most instances, such as particularly in the technological fields, the independent work is generally accomplished in connection with employment and therefore an 8 year period is not devoted strictly to academic pursuits full time. We shorten the time frame to 2 years, the time our faculty have determined is sufficient to generate a significant work. Of  course, some people may need longer, and that is OK too.

Please note before making an inquiry:

(1) We do not give advisory opinions about specific projects prior to the submission of a full Application, which can be submitted at any time and at no cost.

(2) Although every Application and Proposed Project is evaluated on a case by case basis, generally speaking, past publications submitted as satisfying our dissertation requirement are not favored. We are looking for a substantial body of work. We do not issue VAE degrees (Validation des acquis de l’experience) which are valid and commonplace in France and which are essentially based on work experience.

 Suitability of the Applicant and the Proposed Project

 In reviewing your submission, we will evaluate your abilities and past academic or other creative work to determine if you can be successful with your proposed project and bring it to completion.

In addition, the suitability of the proposed independent research or project is also evaluated. It is not possible to list all the criteria that we consider specially, as this differs depending on whether a creative work, scientific research, invention, or other type of project is proposed. For research projects, the Applicant has the burden of demonstrating the current state of the science in the field of endeavor and in what respects the proposed independent work will advance the field. In addition, for all proposed projects, there is a subjective analysis as to whether or not the proposal is suitable for Blue Marble University to sponsor. The ability of the proposed work to be published, circulated, or disseminated is given a great deal of weight.

Pre-Planning vs. Planning

Pre-planning refers to sketching out an outline of the proposed project. This is done in connection with completing the “Supplement to Application” in which the Applicant demonstrates his/her plan for the project and gives preliminary details.

Formal Planning takes place after enrollment, in which the first 3-5 months are spent organizing the project, finalizing the procedure to be followed, planning for the publication and dissemination of the work, and ironing out any problems that may be evident.

 (A) Who May Apply

The dissertation only PhD program is open to anyone, from any field of endeavor, and with any interest. There is no age or other requirement, but see Academic Pre-requisites below.

(B) Academic Pre-requisites

Because the focus for this program is on the proposed independent work itself, rather than on past academic achievements and records, there are no academic pre-requisites for acceptance to this program. However, the ability of the student to complete a proposed project successfully, necessarily entails a review of the student’s skill levels in the areas of writing, communication, and presentation. The student has the burden during the application process of demonstrating that attendant skills have been mastered or obtained. This may be shown in part by past work or samples and/or other relevant demonstrations.

(C) How It Works

The Blue Marble University Dissertation-Only PhD requires the following:

(1) The student must complete an original work within the broad field of the Humanities and Liberal Arts. And we use the word “humanities” very liberally, as that field initially included the sciences. Any and all topics and type of works and styles are considered. By “dissertation” we mean “an original body of work”. The work may be, by way of example and not meant to include all the categories, a novel, a work of history, an archaeological discovery, a film, a video, musical work, a research paper, a photographic journal, natural environment photography, a novel use of the internet or other modern technology, a unique creation of 3D modeling or virtual worlds, a contribution to robotics, a summary or review of medical technology…. in short–any topic of interest to the student for which an original work that contributes to human kind or society may be completed. Special preference will be given to students who create special items to enhance the University, such as a virtual world area for the website or otherwise.

(2) The work or goal of the work must be pre-approved by the Faculty of Blue Marble University in connection with the Application process.

(3) No academic courses are required as part of the program. However, depending on the type of project, suitable training and/or review may be prescribed. For example, a research paper requires the correct form for citations to references. So, some materials outside of the project itself may be suggested by the Faculty mentor.

(4) There must be an approved University Examiner which will serve as the principle guide, mentor, and evaluator of the work. The Examiner will be selected by the University from among its faculty where possible. In the alternative, and where required in those cases where we do not have qualified faculty, the student may suggest an Examiner that he/she would like to work with or to apprentice with that is outside the University. Payment of any fees or costs to such Outside Examiner selected and approved by the University is the responsibility of the Student.

(5) The Faculty have determined, based on a study of various criteria, that two years minimum is required for the completion of a worthy original work. Students may require longer, depending on their progress. However, from the University standpoint, we will consider a student’s original work that is submitted and completed after two years or longer. The first 3-5 months after enrollment is generally set aside for formal and final planning of the project.

(6) The Examiner is the principle person that works with the student in defining the final outline of the project, guiding the student where appropriate as to form, funding, and publication/dissemination of the work. The Examiner will be called upon to report to the Faculty from time to time, and at least quarterly, as to the progress of the student. The role of the Examiner is to assist the student and to support the student’s efforts. Naturally, it is the student’s conception of the project that is the most important, and the Examiner should be supportive but not interfere with the creation and production of the work by the student. Likewise, the student should realize that it is the student, not the Examiner, that is responsible for the creation, production, and completion of the work. Finally, the student may at any time request a change in Examiner. A reason must be articulated for the request, and a change is within the discretion of the University keeping in mind that it is in the best interests of all that the student’s efforts be promoted toward a successful completion of the proposed work.

(7) Criteria for Judgment of the work: First off, it is the intention of Blue Marble University to award a dissertation-only PhD after the completion of two years of work, provided the project is complete. It is not our goal either to extend the time period or to require lengthy periods. Of course, a student may require additional time to complete a project, which is OK as well, but additional annual tuition may be required in that event depending on the level of guidance required and the proximity to projected completion. Because there are so many different types of works that may be submitted, there is no judgment criteria applicable to all. Each work must stand or fall on its own merits. The two primary principles involved in judging a successful work and in granting of a PhD degree are (1) the work be original and substantial; (2) the work should be something that both the student and the University may be proud to present as an accomplishment worthy of the grant of a doctoral degree.

(8) Time spent on the project and the scheduling of time is up to the student. There are no set times that the student must report in, nor any classes. Students of course must communicate their progress to the Faculty mentor from time to time, and upon request, as well as submit progress reports and samples of work in progress.

(D) Cost

As with all of our programs, there is no cost to apply. Annual tuition costs are $2,950 USD with payment plan, or $2,550 USD per year if paid annually in advance.

(E) Degree Awarded and Academic Credentials

Upon completion of the project and approval of the student’s work, the University will issue its Diploma with our standard wording, to the effect that the student named was awarded a Doctor of Philosophy (PhD) degree in Arts and Sciences, and specifying the field of endeavor. More information on the Form and Text of our Degrees can be found under the Academics section of our website at: https://bluemarbleuniversity.wordpress.com/form-text- and-issuance-of-diploma/

In addition, while no transcript of grades will be issued, an academic record similar to a transcript will be prepared which identifies the student and which details the independent work undertaken, the time frame to completion, and the approval of the work. If published in some manner, the publication details will be given. Transcripts, and a copy of the degree awarded are maintained permanently on the internet at the University website using password protected pages. The student or anyone to whom the password has been given may access such records at any time and for free.

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