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Is Old Dominion University's PhD in English a scam?


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Greetings, everyone!

I hope you can help me out. I have a master's degree in English from a prestigious university in New England. I currently work as a high school English teacher. I would like to go for my PhD in English, but I know getting into a top university is very difficult. 

I had so many friends on another forum that encouraged me to go for Old Dominion University's online PhD in English. It seemed enticing, only because I could keep my full-time teaching job while pursuing my degree. My high school even offered to pay for the degree. 

I started the program about a week ago, but I feel that the faculty are not very strong. I don't know if any of the PhD students are published, and to be honest, there's not much literature in the program. At the same time, I'm getting in my own head, worried that I won't be able to find a decent professor job with this type of degree. I'm not sure how it will be perceived. 

I read another article that said these types of degrees are scams, funding opportunities for the university, etc. It kind of scared me. I don't want to make another big mistake. 

Is ODU a reputable school in academia? Should I perhaps try to seek a funded opportunity elsewhere? 

Thanks so much! 

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Unfortunately, I'd guess that if you're planning to apply for academic job, an online phd won't be viewed as a strong asset on your cv. Rather than say if this is a "scam" or not, I'd suggest you have a conversation with a faculty member in the program and voice these same concerns to them. While it's possible they may not be entirely honest with you, I'd bet that if you impressed upon them how important an issue this was to you, you could at least get a better idea of what they think your chances could be for an academic job. 
 

I don't want to be discouraging, but as a note: the academic job market for English phds is very very not good. You can get all the statistical info online, but suffice to say they are basically no programs whose prestige will automatically get their phds tenure track jobs. Especially if you're in this program for the sake of getting an academic job, make sure that you're fully aware of the situation you'll be facing  

best of luck!

 

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20 hours ago, Rootbound said:

Unfortunately, I'd guess that if you're planning to apply for academic job, an online phd won't be viewed as a strong asset on your cv. Rather than say if this is a "scam" or not, I'd suggest you have a conversation with a faculty member in the program and voice these same concerns to them. While it's possible they may not be entirely honest with you, I'd bet that if you impressed upon them how important an issue this was to you, you could at least get a better idea of what they think your chances could be for an academic job. 
 

I don't want to be discouraging, but as a note: the academic job market for English phds is very very not good. You can get all the statistical info online, but suffice to say they are basically no programs whose prestige will automatically get their phds tenure track jobs. Especially if you're in this program for the sake of getting an academic job, make sure that you're fully aware of the situation you'll be facing  

best of luck!

 

Thank you so much! To be honest, I withdrew from the program. It wasn't the right fit for me. I really appreciate your guidance! :)

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glad to be of help! Just a small piece of advice in case you decide to pursue an English phd elsewhere: approach any phd program that is not fully funded with caution. Fully funded means not only do they cover tuition, but they also pay you to be a student either with a stipend or with teaching jobs (usually both). It sounds like you're in a unique position in that your employer will pay for your degree (which is great!), so while I'm not saying to write off non-funded programs completely, I do encourage you to scrutinize them closely. best of luck!

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