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Doctoral Degrees in HR

Doctoral Degrees in HR

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Doctoral degrees in HR should be pursued by those who have identified a subject area that they would like to work on for multiple years, or those who enjoy statistics, psychometrics and research methodologies. Ph.D.’s in HRM take about five years, and include course work, internships or teaching assistantships, and a dissertation.

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Doctoral degrees in Organizational Development or Organizational Behavior involve deep dives into organizational theory and scholarly research. Most OD/OB programs are split into two focus areas: micro-organizational topics such as decision-making, emotions, power and influence, and macro-organizational topics including culture, change, networks, etc. Many OD/OB Ph.D. programs offer the opportunity for interdisciplinary research with related programs such as business, psychology, and sociology.

Practical tip on doctoral degrees in HR: IO or OB Ph.Ds are an extremely specialized function in corporations, which means that your employment options are not as flexible. In some cases you may be disregarded as being “over qualified” for HR generalist or program management positions. Therefore, it is wise to go the doctoral route if you are sure you have a subject area that you would like to become an expert in, or if you are interested in going the academic route.

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