5 Best Grad Schools with Online Doctorate in Information Technology

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Updated: March 14, 2024, Reading time: 15 minutes

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Information Technology (IT) is one of the most crucial fields today. Information technologies and IT systems impact everything from modern cars to hospitals and how governments run. Consider opening more doors to more exciting, higher-paying information technology careers by pursuing a doctorate.

A doctoral degree in Information Technology is one of the broadest doctorates. It entails research into many IT and IT-related fields’ technical, economic, and organizational components. Students with a lot going on in their personal lives, such as family and a job, can pursue an online doctor of information technology program.


Are you working in the fields of information technology or computer services? Consider pursuing a doctorate in information technology if you want a degree that will propel you to the top of your field. Computer science, information systems, and telecommunications are all parts of the complex topic of information technology.

Doctoral students finish fundamental and lab courses and specialized applied research methods in their concentration throughout a five-year study period. Students must also develop a research proposal, produce a dissertation, and present their work for approval to a panel of academic experts.

Graduates who have earned a doctorate in IT can pursue employment in academia, research, or executive roles in business or government.

Quick audio summary:


To help current IT professionals advance their careers, we made sure only to list doctorate and Ph.D. in information technology degrees that each stand out with the following features:

Learn more about our doctoral program ranking process by reading our Methodology.

Top 5 Online Doctorate in Information Technology

Walden University

Walden University

Doctor of Information Technology

Walden University’s Doctor of Information Technology is conducted online, allowing students with other personal commitments to pursue advanced knowledge at lower costs and with less hassle.

Students will receive training for various fields in the information technology industry through IT governance, strategic management, organizational leadership, research, and innovation courses. IT experts designed each course of the program. 

Walden’s Doctor of Information Technology degree program utilizes online chats, virtual classrooms, and research tasks to allow students to collaborate with teachers and their peers. Online students can choose between Applied Information Technology and Information Technology Leadership specializations.

The former is designed for students who want to focus on research, while the latter is for those who want to pursue high-level professional leadership positions. 

The program will require students to complete 69 quarter credits, including foundation, technical, and core courses. In addition to IT courses, students will complete a Doctoral Study and Two Residencies. It also includes doctorate research seminars that give students advice and assistance as they refine their research techniques and choose a subject for their dissertation or doctorate study.

University of the Cumberlands

University of the Cumberlands

PhD in Information Technology

The University of the Cumberlands’ PhD in Information Technology is acknowledged as among the best online doctorates in the field. It is a 60-credit hour information technology online program that provides students with a thorough awareness of the sector’s potential and problems.

Students learn to leverage analytics for IT requirements, apply machine learning to business problems, and deal with cybersecurity concerns. It can be completed in five years.

The Ph.D. in information technology is focused on providing students with predictive analytics knowledge and skills. Students will also explore data science, big data, business risk management, information governance, and other topics. Graduates will have the tools and expertise to become IT experts in big data, cybercrime protection, and advanced technology.

Coursework will give students a thorough awareness of new dangers to IT systems and infrastructure and teach about defenses against cyberattacks.

The program combines online courses, advanced research methodologies, dissertations, and inferential statistics courses. Before graduation, students must conduct 24 credits worth of professional research to complete a dissertation. It comprises a project grounded in reality and offers the possibility to work on genuine, professional problems to advance best practices in the IT industry.

City University of Seattle

City University of Seattle

Doctor of Information Technology

The City University of Seattle’s Doctor of Information Technology is often delivered online using a learning management system to provide online courses. This is one of the best multidisciplinary information technology programs. Candidates acquire fundamental IT skills for influencing and leading businesses, helping them secure senior-level jobs in the sector.

The NSA/DHS Center for Academic Excellence (CAE) standards and ACM curriculum requirements are the foundation for developing the DIT program.

Doctoral students will explore courses in several courses, including leadership theory, research techniques, ethics, strategic planning, and IT administration. Additionally, students can focus on particular facets of data science, cybersecurity, or computer science.

It consists of a 78-credit core curriculum, study concentrations, exams, residencies for writing dissertations, research, and a dissertation. Graduates boost organizational performance by utilizing cutting-edge technologies like cloud computing, artificial intelligence, cybersecurity, and data science. Students can tailor their degrees to align with their professional goals thanks to its customizable structure.

Capella University

Capella University

Doctor of Information Technology

Capella University’s online Doctor of Information program allows students to earn a degree in hybrid learning with occasional on-campus residencies or in a fully online format with virtual residences.

This online doctoral program is designed for seasoned professionals looking to develop in their professions as senior technology managers, consultants, researchers, or lecturers. Courses of the program explore topics that build students’ skills in information technology, cybersecurity, and project management.

To provide students with the fundamental advanced IT skills and practical knowledge required for leadership positions in the 21st century, they’ll undergo advanced topic courses in project management, information assurance, and cyber security. Students will also develop skills to make better judgments in information technology through the program’s topic in the related research literature.

The total program credits needed for this degree are 70, which includes core courses, specialized courses, two virtual residencies, and one dissertation. In addition, under the direction of business experts, students create a capstone project.

Middle Georgia State University

Middle Georgia State University

Doctor of Science in Information Technology

Middle Georgia State University offers an online DSc in Information Technology degree program that moves in a cohort format, meaning there’s no year-round enrollment. Interested applicants will have to wait until fall to submit their applications.

This degree is best suited for students with more time to dedicate to their studies since the program does not offer part-time study; it aims to help students quickly enter the fast-paced IT market.

All classes are delivered online. However, all online students will be required to fulfill on-campus residences at the beginning and end of the doctoral program. Since students will be studying full-time with fast-paced courses, they’re expected to complete the requirements in two years.

The graduate degree requires 54 hours from its candidates. Since classes move in cohorts, students are required to follow the curriculum outlined in the catalog for the academic year in which they matriculate, although if revisions are made after matriculation, they are free to select another course of study.

Career and Salary Outlook for Doctor of Information Technology Graduates

Career and Salary Outlook for Doctor of Information Technology Graduates

The Bureau of Labor Statistics projects that the demand for professionals in this field to rise by 15% from 2022-20323. This means that there are about 418,500 job openings annually. 

Getting a PhD or any other doctorate might be a very scary notion. However, earning a PhD in the discipline of IT is wholly worthwhile.

Most of the employment options within the profession are in management or leadership roles, so having such a high degree of education opens up a whole new universe of career opportunities. You won’t likely be considered for these advanced roles with greater salaries without a PhD.

Some of the most common jobs for information technology doctoral graduates include:

Computer and Information Research Scientist

Computer and information research scientists do research and create new technologies and methods in computer science. These professionals aim to improve computer science and its applications by working in research facilities, academic institutions, governmental organizations, or commercial businesses.


Economists are responsible for producing, distributing, and consuming goods and services. They study how people, organizations, governments, and society decide how to allocate resources and how these actions affect various economic issues.

Mathematician or Statistician

Mathematicians and statisticians are professionals who study and develop mathematical principles, theories, and applications. They engage in abstract reasoning, problem-solving, and logical thinking to explore patterns, structures, and relationships within mathematical systems.

Survey Researcher

A Survey Researcher plans, conducts, and evaluates surveys to collect data and information from individuals or groups. They are hired in fields where data gathering is required, such as social sciences, market research, and public opinion polling.

Postsecondary Teacher

A postsecondary teacher in information technology, also known as a professor or instructor, is a professional who educates students at the college or university level in the field of information technology.

These individuals possess expertise in IT concepts, theories, practices, and emerging technologies. Their primary responsibility is to deliver high-quality instruction and facilitate learning experiences for students pursuing IT-related degrees.

Online Doctorate in Information Technology Admission Requirements

Every university and program has its own admission requirements. However, online doctoral programs in information technology will require prospective doctoral students to have a background in any IT field.

To secure a spot, applicants should have a master’s degree in IT or any IT-related field from reputable educational institutions and an information technology résumé showcasing work experience. Other requirements include a statement of purpose and three letters of recommendation. 

Some programs may require students to hold high GPAs, a minimum of 3.0 on a 4.0 grading scale. Admissions may also require students to submit GRE or GMAT exam results received within the last five years. International students and non-native English speakers must provide IELTS or TOEFL test results as evidence of their English language competency.

You must research to determine the requirements of an online information technology doctorate program you are applying for since each university has different admission standards.

What You’ll Learn in Online Doctorate Programs in Information Technology

A doctorate in information technology (IT) program courses may vary depending on the university and program criteria.

However, all online doctorate programs have the same goal: To equip candidates with knowledge about technology and innovation management, cyber security and information assurance, algorithm design, computer ethics, and information technology policy and governance. 

The following are some typical courses you might take in an online doctorate in information technology:

Advanced Research Methods in IT

This course covers advanced research methodologies, such as experimental design, survey design, data analysis, statistical approaches, and qualitative and quantitative research techniques. It offers the fundamental information and abilities required for carrying out IT research.

Cybersecurity and Risk Management

The difficulties of cybersecurity and IT risk management strategies are covered in this course. Network security, risk assessment, data protection, incident response, access control, cryptography, and adherence to moral and legal norms are some subjects it covers.

Data Management and Analytics

Data warehousing, data mining, predictive analytics, big data analytics, and data visualization are among the advanced data management and analytics subjects covered in this course. It looks into methods and equipment for gathering, managing, analyzing, and interpreting massive amounts of data in IT situations.

Emerging Technologies and Innovations

This course looks at new technologies and how they affect IT. Virtual reality, blockchain, cloud computing, artificial intelligence, machine learning, the Internet of Things (IoT), and augmented reality are some topics this course explores. It examines the possible uses, difficulties, and effects of these technologies.

IT Theory and Frameworks

This course examines the theoretical underpinnings and frameworks of the IT discipline. It covers subjects including information systems theories, IT governance, IT strategy, IT innovation, IT ethics, and IT adoption and diffusion models.

IT Systems Design and Development

Advanced issues in the design and development of IT systems are covered in this course. System design approaches, software engineering fundamentals, software architecture, system modeling, and the software development life cycle are all covered. It might also examine recent developments like DevOps and agile software development.

IT Project Management

Advanced project management practices and principles in IT contexts are the main topics of this course. It addresses project scheduling, risk management, quality control, resource management, and stakeholder communication. It might also investigate project management frameworks like Scrum or Agile.

IT Leadership and Organizational Behavior

This course focuses on management techniques, organizational behavior, and leadership principles concerning IT environments. Topics are covered, including change management, strategic planning, corporate culture, team dynamics, and communication in IT leadership roles.

Seminar in IT Research

Doctoral students can present and discuss their ongoing research topics in this seminar course. It entails the critique of research articles, the creation of research proposals, the development of research ethics, and the improvement of research methodology.

Information Technology Professional Associations and Organizations

Professional organizations provide various valuable resources to recent graduates and students pursuing an online doctorate in information technology. Membership benefits typically include professional development, job postings, access to online journals and trade publications, and in-person networking opportunities.

Information technology professionals can join a variety of associations and professional organizations. The most common and popular associations and organizations include:

Association for Computing Machinery (ACM)

One of the most prominent and most established international professional associations in the computing industry is ACM. Numerous resources, conferences, publications, and special interest groups address various IT-related topics, such as computer science, artificial intelligence, software engineering, and more.

Association for Information Systems (AIS)

The study, development, and use of information systems are the focus of the AIS. It encourages cooperation between academics, researchers, and IT specialists. Conferences, journals, and networking opportunities are all provided by AIS for its members.


CompTIA is the leading IT professional trade organization that provides training materials, market information, networking opportunities, and vendor-neutral certifications. Networking, security, cloud computing, project management, and other IT-related topics are all covered by CompTIA.

Information Systems Security Association (ISSA)

Information security is the focus of the international ISSA. It provides certificates, conferences, networking opportunities, and instructional resources. ISSA offers a forum for IT professionals to share information and keep up with the most recent developments in cybersecurity.

International Association of IT Asset Managers (IAITAM)

IAITAM focuses on IT asset management and provides professionals interested in managing IT assets throughout their lifecycle with certifications, tools, and networking opportunities. It recommends best practices, legal compliance, and cost-effective IT asset management.

Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers (IEEE) Computer Society

The IEEE Computer Society is primarily concerned with technology and computer science. It offers access to conferences, webinars, technical publications, and networking opportunities. The society addresses various topics, including computer architecture, data science, cybersecurity, and software engineering.

Project Management Institute (PMI)

An international organization for project management experts is PMI. It provides tools, training, and networking opportunities for IT professionals engaged in project management and offers certifications like the Project Management Professional (PMP).

What licensure and certifications are available in information technology?

Frequently Asked Questions

What licensure and certifications are available in Information Technology?

IT professionals have access to various professional credentials, which can help them demonstrate their expertise, enhance their credibility, and advance their careers. The most popular include:

Can I earn a PhD in one year?

Doctorate programs are demanding and in-depth, and they are created to give students in-depth information, research abilities, and experience in a particular field of study. A doctorate usually takes several years of intense study and research to complete. One-year doctorates in information technology do not exist. 

How long does it take to get a Doctorate in Information Technology?

The time it takes to complete a doctorate in information technology can vary based on several variables, including the program, the student’s progress, and the type of research being done. The average completion time is 3 to 5 years. 

How much does an online Information Technology PhD Cost?

The cost of an online Ph.D. in information technology program might differ greatly based on the school, the number of courses offered, student residency, and more. However, according to the National Center for Education Statistics’ recent data, the average cost of a doctorate degree is $19,314 per year. 

Key Takeaways

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