Applied Computer Science

Doctor of Philosophy in Business Administration

With today’s rapid changes in technology, business and research institutions look for leaders who possess advanced knowledge of contemporary computer science methods in order to maintain a competitive edge. In this specialization, you’ll develop specialized advanced knowledge and skills in the information technology field. You will have the opportunity to explore complex database management systems, advanced topics in management information systems, C++ programming, distributed computing fundamentals for technology leaders and advanced topics in network communications. As a graduate, you will have gained the knowledge and skills needed to serve as a researcher or business leader for computer science initiatives or education professional in your field.

General Degree Requirements

Admission to a doctoral program at NCU requires a master's degree from an accredited institution.

The PhD program may be completed in 60 credits. Up to an additional 15 credit hours will be allowed as needed to complete dissertation research. The University may accept a maximum of 12 semester credit hours in transfer toward the doctoral degree for graduate coursework completed at an accredited college or university with a grade of "B" or better.

Completion Period for Doctoral Degrees

Northcentral University allows 7 years to complete all doctoral programs of 60 credits or less. Normal time to complete varies depending upon course take rate and credits transferred.

Foundational Competencies for DBA Programs

  • Graduate-Level Research Methods Competency - PhD students are required to complete BTM8102, BTM8103, BTM8104, BTM8106, BTM8107, BTM8108 and BTM8109 at Northcentral.
  • Graduate-Level Statistics Competency - PhD students are required to complete BTM8107 Statistics II at Northcentral.
  • Computer Competency - Doctoral students are required to have computer skills necessary for completing a dissertation. Students must be able to prepare documents using advanced word processing skills (e.g., creation of tables and figures, headers and footers, page breaks, tables of contents, hanging indents). Students must use computer programs for the statistical analysis of data (e.g., SAS). Students must produce a computer-based presentation (e.g., PowerPoint) for their dissertation oral defense.

Course Length

All new students enrolling in the Business PhD program are automatically enrolled in courses that are eight weeks in length. All eight-week courses are indicated by a "-8" (dash eight) at the end of the course code.

Evaluation Track

Student transcripts will be evaluated to determine whether or not direct entry requirements are met. Individuals who do not meet the direct entry requirements of the Doctor of Philosophy in Business Administration program may require additional Standard Curriculum credits. The Evaluation Track courses can be viewed by clicking here.

The PhD in Business requires five specialization and six research courses, a total of 33 credit hours. Following completion of Foundational courses, Specialization, and Research courses must be taken in sequence as described.

Course Code

Name

Course Description

Specialization Course 1

BTM7303

Research Methodology

This course focuses on the scholarly review of literature and academic writing. The course emphasis is on how to (a) conduct effective literature searches, specifically in preparation for the dissertation, (b) develop a plan for writing comprehensive, critical, and synthesized reviews of research literature, and (c) critically review and write about underlying theory/conceptual frameworks that lay the foundation for future research. The overarching goal of this course is for students to conduct an exhaustive search of the peer-reviewed research literature in their topic area and identify potential areas of inquiry for their dissertation.

Specialization Course 2

BTM8103, BTM8103-8

Research Design

In this course, the Student acquires the basic skills necessary for the interpretation and application of quantitative, qualitative, and mixed methods research. The student will examine the formal research process carefully, with an emphasis on practical applications and skill development. Critical concepts and principles intrinsic to research paradigms, study designs, and methods of inquiry are presented to empower the student's ability to formulate and respond to research questions. The resources listed below from the Northcentral University Dissertation Center are critical resources throughout the whole research process - students are highly encouraged to become deeply familiar with the resources from the Northcentral University Dissertation Center.

Specialization Course 3

BTM8108, BTM8108-8

Qualitative Research Design

This course is an examination of qualitative methods for studying human behavior including grounded theory, narrative analysis, ethnography, mixed methods, and case studies.

Specialization Course 4

BTM8107, BTM8107-8

Statistics II

This course is an advanced examination of statistical analyses commonly used for research in business. It prepares the doctoral student with the skills required to plan, conduct (using SPSS), report, and interpret quantitative statistical analyses. Topics include: basic statistical knowledge, probability theory, exploratory date analysis, assumptions for statistical tests, parametric and nonparametric tests. Specific analyses include: correlation, regression (simple, multiple, and logistic), basic ANOVA and advanced ANOVA techniques.

Specialization Course 5

BTM8106, BTM8106-8

Quantitative Research Design

Prerequisites: BTM8102, BTM8104 This course provides students with the skills essential for designing experimental, quasi-experiment, and survey studies; analyzing the data collected in these studies, and interpreting the results of data analyses. Students will explore designs and statistical techniques to use with their envisioned dissertation research.

BTM8109, BTM8109-8

Planning Dissertation Research in Business

Students in this course will begin the process of writing a dissertation for a research or professional doctorate. The course will address the University dissertation process and aids to successfully complete a dissertation, including self-care and time management.

Required Foundation Courses - 12 credit hours

Course Code

Name

Course Description

BTM7101, BTM7101-8

Foundations for Doctoral Study In Business

This course is an orientation to Northcentral University and to the essential skills needed to pursue a doctoral degree in Business. Doctoral level skills, such as academic integrity, time management, effective use of the Northcentral Library, comprehending complex scholarly texts and research articles, and APA form and style in professional communication are also introduced. Students will complete the course with a better understanding of personal goals, strengths, and challenges, and a roadmap to navigate their way to completion of their educational aspirations.

BTM7300

Scholarly Literature Review

This course focuses on the scholarly review of literature and academic writing. The course emphasis is on how to (a) conduct effective literature searches, specifically in preparation for the dissertation, (b) develop a plan for writing comprehensive, critical, and synthesized reviews of research literature, and (c) critically review and write about underlying theory/conceptual frameworks that lay the foundation for future research. The overarching goal of this course is for students to conduct an exhaustive search of the peer-reviewed research literature in their topic area and identify potential areas of inquiry for their dissertation.

BTM8104, BTM8104-8

Statistics I

This course provides an introductory exploration of statistics for the doctoral student. It includes instruction on the calculation, use, and interpretation of descriptive statistics, and introduces inferential statistical analysis. The emphasis of this course is on providing a working knowledge of basic statistical concepts to help the Student understand statistical methodology used in education, and also more generally, developing a working knowledge of statistical usage in everyday life.

MGT7019, MGT7019-8

Ethics in Business

No longer are ethics and social responsibility, including the green movement, something organizations can ignore or do if they have funding left over at the end of the year. Ethics are required by local, state and federal legislation and today, more than ever, stakeholders at organizations are being held accountable for their actions and societal harm. Doctoral students in this course, through a series of essays and papers, will learn about current laws and their application to business; and how to maintain an ethical perspective within the context of a global framework.

Specialization Courses - 15 credit hours, Select 5 from the following:

Course Code

Name

Course Description

CS7005-8

Complex Database Management Systems

The database administration field continues to grow exponentially, requiring executives and workers to hold advanced knowledge regarding network architecture and current technologies. The Corporation Information Officer (CIO) is an example of a new executive role that has emerged as a result of this growth, requiring specialized advanced education in the Information Technology field. This course analyzes network architecture and design, including such topics as WAN, LAN, Wireless, and other leading edge technologies in network architecture from an executive perspective, exploring emerging case study applications of contemporary database software applications. Students will be evaluated on technical research projects, and case studies applied in the business areas using database applications.

CS7006-8

Advanced Networking Technologies for Technology Leaders

The Network Administration course focuses on the network administrator. The Network Administrator will concentrate on the overall health of the network, server deployment, security, and ensuring that the network connectivity throughout a company's LAN/WAN infrastructure is on par with technical considerations at the network level of an organization's hierarchy. This course will focus on topics such as computer, network and server security and other technologies in network architecture. Evaluation of peer reviewed journal articles will include case studies, and projects.

CS7009-8

Advanced Topics in Management Information Systems

The Information Technology field continues to grow exponentially, requiring students to hold advanced knowledge of information, technology, and systems. The Management Information Systems discipline needs professionals familiar with where the field has been and where it is going. The purpose of this course is to explore advanced topics including concepts, applications, and future directions of Management Information Systems. Students will be evaluated on research projects and case studies.

CS7010-8

Advanced Topics in Network Communications

The Information Technology (IT) field continues to grow exponentially, requiring candidates to hold advanced knowledge regarding contemporary applications of client server Web architecture. The Chief Information Officer (CIO) is an example of a new executive role that has emerged as a result of this growth, requiring specialized advanced education in the IT field. This course explores advanced topics in Network Architecture and Technology, including concepts, applications, and future directions regarding the development of networks for business systems. Students will be evaluated on final research projects, and case studies of businesses, performing an analysis against various Network Architecture and Technology topographies to maximize systems performances.

CS7013-8

Programming Language Fundamentals for Technology Leaders

In this course, students explore advanced topics in Programming Languages and Principles, including concepts, applications, and future directions regarding business systems development. The Information Technology field continues to grow exponentially, requiring executives to hold advanced knowledge regarding contemporary applications of programming languages and principles. The Chief Information Officer (CIO) is an example of a new executive role that has emerged as a result of this growth, requiring specialized leadership education in the Information Technology field. In order to assume this role, the CIO must understand the basics of programming and programming language design.

CS7014-8

Software Engineering Fundamentals for Technology Leaders

In this course, students will recognize the importance of modeling associated with software development. As more businesses become electronic, the need for experienced software developers increases. Software engineers, system architects, computer programmers, and information technology programmers will benefit from this course by becoming familiar with the processes technology leaders use prior to the design and implementation stage of software development. Students will assume the roles of software engineers to give them the experience and confidence that is necessary to succeed in this field.

CS7015-8

Distributed Computing Fundamentals for Technology Leaders

The focus of this course is the development of a professional understanding of the value and uses of Distributed Computing systems, architectures and processes aimed at meeting the business and financial needs of an organization. This course is designed for students who want an overview of designing systems that connect with multiple systems. This course provides students with a synthesis regarding the ways in which system architects, analysts, and engineers might develop a system aimed to enhance end-user satisfaction. The course concentrates on the tools needed for the mastery of Distributed Computing concepts and terms, which are important for all managers who communicate with technologies.

MIS7005-8

IT Network Architecture

This course provides a professional understanding of the value and uses of information systems architectures and processes aimed to improve the overall performances of an organization. This course is designed for students who want an overview of designing an enterprise architecture, computer networks, systems applications, and information systems processes. This course provides students with a synthesis regarding the ways in which technologists might develop an enterprise network architecture to improve application accessibility, data storage, and management, communications, and business processes. The course concentrates on providing the tools needed for mastery of enterprise network architecture concepts and terms, which are important for all managers who communicate with technologists about business-related planning that aims to improve enterprise network systems.

CS7015-8

Distributed Computing Fundamentals for Technology Leaders

The focus of this course is the development of a professional understanding of the value and uses of Distributed Computing systems, architectures and processes aimed at meeting the business and financial needs of an organization. This course is designed for students who want an overview of designing systems that connect with multiple systems. This course provides students with a synthesis regarding the ways in which system architects, analysts, and engineers might develop a system aimed to enhance end-user satisfaction. The course concentrates on the tools needed for the mastery of Distributed Computing concepts and terms, which are important for all managers who communicate with technologies.

MIS7005-8

IT Network Architecture

This course provides a professional understanding of the value and uses of information systems architectures and processes aimed to improve the overall performances of an organization. This course is designed for students who want an overview of designing an enterprise architecture, computer networks, systems applications, and information systems processes. This course provides students with a synthesis regarding the ways in which technologists might develop an enterprise network architecture to improve application accessibility, data storage, and management, communications, and business processes. The course concentrates on providing the tools needed for mastery of enterprise network architecture concepts and terms, which are important for all managers who communicate with technologists about business-related planning that aims to improve enterprise network systems.

Doctoral Comprehensive Exam - 3 credit hours

Course Code

Name

Course Description

CMP9500B

Doctoral Comprehensive Examination - Business (PhD)

In their pursuit of any doctoral degree (PhD, DBA, or EdD) at Northcentral University, students gain expertise in their academic discipline and in one or more specializations that complement their academic discipline. The Doctoral Comprehensive Examination is intended to assure that students have mastered knowledge of their discipline before candidacy status is achieved and research in support of their dissertation is initiated. The Doctoral Comprehensive Examination is taken following the completion of all content and Research courses. This course is graded using Satisfactory (S), In Progress (IP), and Unsatisfactory (U) grading criteria. The Doctoral Comprehensive Examination must be successfully completed with an (S) grade prior to beginning any Dissertation Research course. The exam is twelve weeks.

Dissertation Courses - 12 credit hours

Course Code

Name

Course Description

DIS9501B

Doctoral Dissertation Research I

In this course sequence, students work progressively on completing each doctoral dissertation milestone toward the completion of the PhD degree. These milestones include Committee and University approval of a dissertation concept paper, a dissertation proposal paper, an approved IRB application by the Northcentral University Institutional Review Board, the collection and analysis of research data, the preparation and approval of the final dissertation manuscript, and the successful completion of the oral defense. Courses are taken continually and sequentially until all dissertation milestones have been completed. Throughout these courses, students often work independently but are required to be in communication with the Chair of their Dissertation Committee at least once a month. These courses are graded utilizing Satisfactory (S) and Unsatisfactory (U) as the grading criteria.

DIS9502B

Doctoral Dissertation Research II

In this course sequence, students work progressively on completing each doctoral dissertation milestone toward the completion of the PhD degree. These milestones include Committee and University approval of a dissertation concept paper, a dissertation proposal paper, an approved IRB application by the Northcentral University Institutional Review Board, the collection and analysis of research data, the preparation and approval of the final dissertation manuscript, and the successful completion of the oral defense. Courses are taken continually and sequentially until all dissertation milestones have been completed. Throughout these courses, students often work independently but are required to be in communication with the Chair of their Dissertation Committee at least once a month. These courses are graded utilizing Satisfactory (S) and Unsatisfactory (U) as the grading criteria.

DIS9503B

Doctoral Dissertation Research III

In this course sequence, students work progressively on completing each doctoral dissertation milestone toward the completion of the PhD degree. These milestones include Committee and University approval of a dissertation concept paper, a dissertation proposal paper, an approved IRB application by the Northcentral University Institutional Review Board, the collection and analysis of research data, the preparation and approval of the final dissertation manuscript, and the successful completion of the oral defense. Courses are taken continually and sequentially until all dissertation milestones have been completed. Throughout these courses, students often work independently but are required to be in communication with the Chair of their Dissertation Committee at least once a month. These courses are graded utilizing Satisfactory (S) and Unsatisfactory (U) as the grading criteria.

DIS9504B

Doctoral Dissertation Research IV

In this course sequence, students work progressively on completing each doctoral dissertation milestone toward the completion of the PhD degree. These milestones include Committee and University approval of a dissertation concept paper, a dissertation proposal paper, an approved IRB application by the Northcentral University Institutional Review Board, the collection and analysis of research data, the preparation and approval of the final dissertation manuscript, and the successful completion of the oral defense. Courses are taken continually and sequentially until all dissertation milestones have been completed. Throughout these courses, students often work independently but are required to be in communication with the Chair of their Dissertation Committee at least once a month. These courses are graded utilizing Satisfactory (S) and Unsatisfactory (U) as the grading criteria.

At Northcentral University, we pride ourselves in being completely transparent when it comes to tuition and fees. If a cost is not included in our Cost Per Course Tuition Rate, we let you know up front. Currently, the only additional cost above your program rate* is books. Learn more about the NCU’s PhD in Business Administration costs below:

  • Per credit cost: $986
  • Per 3 credit course cost: $2,958
  • Program cost: $59,160
  • Average book cost per course: $110
  • Application Fee: $0
  • Learning Management Fee (one-time per program): $250
  • Registration Fee: $0

Click here to learn more about payment and financing options.

*Program rates are subject to change and generally increase at the start of each calendar year.

Total program costs reflected are calculated based on standard degree program credits exclusive of the program’s potential evaluation track. The actual cost of a program is determined based upon the program and track the student enters, transfer credits if any, and other unique student factors. For more information: please contact Admissions or refer to the catalog.

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To learn more, request information or call 1-866-776-0331 to speak with an enrollment advisor today. We offer new courses every Monday of the year so you can get started when it’s best for you.