Doctorate vs. PhD – What’s the Difference?

Are you considering the next step to boost your business career, perhaps an advanced degree? We’ve received questions about the differences between some seemingly similar degree options, such as a Doctorate of Business Administration (DBA) and a PhD in the business field.

Let’s break it down so you can make an educated choice about which degree will better suit your needs and goals…

What is the difference between a PhD and a Doctorate of Business Administration (DBA)? 

According to the Journal of Educations, these two degrees were established with different purposes. 

  • A PhD degree is heavily based on research. It is given in recognition of the candidate’s original contribution to his or her subject area, research that has redefined said discipline. 
  • The DBA is a professional and applied degree with a practical orientation. It is given to a professional who has completed doctoral-level course of study and mastered the background material necessary for direct practice.

Benefits of a DBA:

The focus lies on the applied aspects of the issues relating to the field of management. It suggests the ability to initiate one’s own projects, complete theoretical tasks autonomously, as well as analyze phenomena and manage groups of people. 

Thus, a DBA is often considered a higher qualification than the ordinary PhD as it focuses directly on practical knowledge and issues rather than theoretical research.

A DBA is also different from a PhD in a business field in terms of length of studies, admission requirements, methodologies involved, student/assistant status at the university/business school, educational formats, and job opportunities. 

Though a Master’s degree is commonly sought-after in the business field, students often have a gap between the MBA and wanting to further their education. The Doctoral program – officially known as the Doctorate of Business Administration (DBA) – was created with these students in mind, providing them with advanced education necessary to step into a well-paying management role. 

Earning a DBA can offer various career options, such as: 1) Senior academic positions at universities; 2) Business school positions (such as visiting professor or academic director); 3) Compliance officers in third sector organization; 4) Professors’ jobs at large private companies (where demanded by fiduciary responsibility), etc.

Where can you pursue a DBA?

The DBA offered jointly by the Global Humanistic University and Business School Netherlands is a top DBA program that is taught completely online, meaning you can study whenever and wherever you are in the world. Their Global Executive Doctor of Business Administration also offers the opportunity to study in your preferred language, including English, Italian, Spanish, French, Portuguese and more!

The Global Executive DBA is a doctorate programme for executives, managers, consultants and C-suite executives. The program includes research in the main fields of Responsible Leadership, Change Leadershi, Decision-making Leadership, and Performance Leadership.
Curious to learn more about their DBA program? Click here to read more, request a brochure with more info, or connect directly with a representative from Business School Netherlands!

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