WELCOME TO THE DOCTORAL ACHIEVEMENT PROGRAM
Earning a doctoral degree is not for the faint of heart. You’ve invested time, money, energy, passion, and effort to pass the courses leading up to the degree. You’ve passed your comprehensive exams. You’ve learned the material.
Then something went awry. A bad personality fit, endless battles with your chair or the committee, competing requirements on your time, constant demoralizing feedback, poor communication, a personal setback, financial strains, or perhaps the self-doubt that you could finish the work.
Now you’re ready to complete what you started. Not willing to settle for a confusing PhD-c or an ABD, you desire to move forward. We know that earning a doctoral degree can be challenging. It is not, however, an overwhelming or all-consuming investment of time and expense. It’s a goal you can achieve with the diligent application of self and time management.
Whatever the barrier that stopped you, you’re not alone. Most who start their doctoral journey assume they will be successful. Yet a full 50% or more students who start a doctoral program will not complete their doctoral degree. Our mission is to help you restart your doctoral plan and this time, succeed.
Collectively we have mentored several hundred dissertations and served on dozens of committees. We’ve been professors and deans, department chairs and coaches, readers and reviewers, business owners, CTOs and entrepreneurs. We have the depth of experience to guide you and offer expectations for your motivation and dedication to the process.
To provide you with the opportunity to complete your doctoral degree and enjoy the benefits that you worked so hard to gain.
During your time in our program, we will walk hand-in-hand to provide you with solid skills as a scholar and researcher. These skills will serve you well both now and as you continue your journey after you receive your doctoral degree.
THE WASHINGTON CENTER
Leadership is about relationships. As our structure shows, your participation in this program involves creating networks of relationships between you, your mentor, and the program's management and community. We use an authentic leader mentorship model where we:
Respect you as a student.
Get to know you as a person.
Listen to you.
Partner with you to overcome hurdles.
Offer you regular constructive feedback.
Challenge you to continually engage and improve your skills.
To assist with completing your degree, we’ve created an innovative program we think is highly effective for most ABD students. The innovation designed into the program is described as a curated, competency-based, formulaic program. These terms mean:
Curated: A unique application that appeals to a specific demographic or niche. Our focus in this program is to provide individuals who started a doctoral program and did not complete it, with the guidance to complete it. This is accomplished without most of the other extraneous actions that go with earning a doctoral degree. Curated means we focus on the essence of what you need to know and do to complete your doctoral degree.
Formulaic: produced according to a formula or set of formulas: adhering to set forms or conventions. Our template for this effort offers the standard five-chapter dissertation process with various research methodologies and designs, step-by-step procedures, and materials. It includes an experienced doctoral mentor who has in-depth doctoral-level knowledge and experience with the dissertation process. The mentor will provide guidance through the formulaic-based process.
Competency-based: A system of delivery, assessment, grading, and academic accomplishment based on the individual demonstration of learning and mastering of competencies. That is, you can earn your degree as fast as you can master the competencies required in the respective courses. Given your efforts to date, you may already be well down this road as you still have the work product you did in your previous program. You and your mentor can evaluate how much of that writing can be carried forward into your current effort.
Quality Education: We believe in high quality as a crucial standard for our program. High-quality education provides all students with capabilities consistent with established standards for their professions. A confirmative aspect of this goal is our adoption of a process by which courses are developed. To ensure the highest quality in our courses' development, we follow the Quality Matters (QM) standards for our courses. (Visit: www.qualitymatters.org.)
The QM general standards cover:
Course Overview and Introduction
Learning Objectives (Competencies)
Assessment and Measurement
Learning Activities and Learner Interaction
Accessibility and Usability
Academic Rigor: We believe in academic rigor. This is not a diploma mill degree. A diploma mill degree is never an answer for you or your career. Under our approach, we’ll ask you to reach and maintain the highest rigors of academic quality. You will be proud of your degree.
We expect you will studiously apply yourself and that what you write will add evidence-based research to improve knowledge and practice in your field. Communicating valid and reliable results in Chapter 4 is of primary importance. We note that one's opinion is not of value in an educational scholarship setting until you write Chapter 5 of your dissertation. Chapter 5 offers the opportunity to opine on the meanings you ascribe to your findings and conclusions.
Before beginning the program, we will inquire about your readiness and competency to use research and research methods. If you’re uncertain about your research skills, we offer an independent five-week refresher course on research methods. This course is optional. It’s not a requirement, nor counted in the number of credits needed to complete your degree. It’s a straightforward way to refresh your research skills.
Once you begin, we have developed an infrastructure to support you at each step of the way. It focuses on publicly available materials, methods and processes at little or no additional cost to you.
Upon graduation, you will have made a unique contribution to the body of knowledge in your published dissertation. You will also have accomplished a major life achievement.
Quality Mentors: The success of this program relies on many factors. Among the most fundamental is the quality of our mentors. Our world-class mentors have extraordinary experience and depth of expertise not replicated elsewhere. They have a minimum of twenty years’ experience teaching and mentoring doctoral students. They have real life experience in major corporate, public sector and international organizations in multiple fields. Their experience covers all research methods and designs. They understand the dissertation process and know how to work with doctoral candidates effectively and efficiently.
It is useful to remember, however, that it is your dissertation and your work. Our mentors are there to guide you, yet the final product is your responsibility. It is your hard work and willingness to learn the skills that go with a dissertation that are the keys to your success. Even the best mentor can’t help a student who is not motivated. You will choose your mentor in collaboration with the provost to ensure we get the best match.
We are a good fit with students who:
Welcome an opportunity to work one-on-one with an experienced mentor in a supportive environment to complete your degree.
Want a school that offers personalized support, regular phone contact, and flexibility.
Are proud of the quality work they accomplished in your pre-dissertation doctoral level courses.
Want to be proud of their published dissertation for many years as their careers progress .
Are eager to gain scholarly and academic skills while writing the dissertation.
Are committed to invest the time and energy needed to write a dissertation.
Is the WCMLCS Doctoral Achievement Program a good fit for your motivation to continue your doctoral journey? Consider these reasons why or why not:
The first reason is that you want to be defined as a terminal degree professional in your field. There are multiple ways to become a professional, but to become a professional with a terminal degree, the avenue is a doctorate. No if, ands, or buts about it; with a doctorate you are universally accepted as a professional.
Second, you believe not enough is known about a particular topic or problem and you want to contribute new knowledge about the topic. You have something to say about it and doctoral study provides you with the opportunity to study and express yourself personally and professionally, about the topic.
Third, (this may not be important to you), it enables you to differentiate yourself in society. As a person with a doctoral degree, you are part of the top 2% of the educated population of the world.
Fourth, you want to be the most that you can be. This is one avenue to help you become that person.
“Every great dream begins with a dreamer. Always remember, you have within you the strength, the patience, and the passion to reach for the stars to change the world.”
-- Harriet Tubman