Doctor of Philosophy in Instructional Design

Research, shape and influence the learning process

Instructional design seeks to connect people with the knowledge and skills they need to reach their personal and professional goals. Those dedicated to this field must not only have deep knowledge of the learning process, but they must also know how to create effective learning pathways for a broad range of diverse learners. Those at the doctoral level must also be prepared to make research-based contributions to the learning sciences.


Improve the learning experience through research and insight

Our Doctor of Philosophy (PhD) in Instructional Design program will help students gain the advanced skills they need to thrive in this challenging and rewarding field. Students will gain practical, hands-on experience working with subject matter experts, managing complex projects and carrying out research projects. Upon graduation students will have the skills they need to help shape learning environments and contribute to the overall body of knowledge in the field of instructional design.

This program was designed to align with instructional design competencies including those set forth by the International Board of Standards for Training, Performance and Improvement© (ibstpi), the Association for Talent Development (ATD) and the Association for Educational Communication and Technology (AECT). The program is centered on helping students develop advanced skills and knowledge related to the learning experience and instructional design. Students will learn how to evaluate design processes, explore the design and development of simulations, games and mobile learning, and contribute to the body of knowledge through rigorous research on these and other topics related to instructional design.

Earn your Doctor of Philosophy in Instructional Design

At Northcentral University you can complete your Doctor of Philosophy in Instructional Design program entirely online, whenever it’s convenient for you. We have no residency requirements, no GRE/GMAT requirements and no group projects. This allows you to earn your degree from anywhere in the world and complete coursework at your own pace. We also offer a unique one-to-one learning model that provides you the guidance, attention and support you need to thrive.

Career Potential

  • Post-Secondary Instructor
  • Research and development
  • Director of Learning and Development
  • Director of Training and Development
  • Learning and Development Consultant
  • Education Administrator
  • Distance Learning Coordinator
Positions may require additional experience, training and other factors beyond the successful completion of this degree program.

Doctor of Philosophy in Instructional Design Program at a Glance

Total Credit Hours: 60 Credit Hours
Courses: 20 Courses
Recommended Completion Time: 45 Months
Next Start Date: Every Monday
Classroom Size: One

Important Information for Students, Including Gainful Employment
Performance Fact Sheets available for residents of California