Doctoral Studies

Specializations - Adult, Continuing, and Higher Education

Program Overview 

The field of Adult, Continuing, and Higher Education (ACHE) is a growing discipline as more adults return to learning in such diverse settings as community colleges, universities, professional education programs, training and development and workplace learning, and  health care delivery systems. The ACHE specialization is a non PreK-12 track designed to prepare students and working professionals for careers as practitioners in organizations or for faculty positions directly related to the delivery of educational services for adults. The ACHE specialization provides opportunities for students to engage in an enriched program of academic study grounded in the field of adult education and higher education scholarship, equipping the UEAE graduates with the knowledge and skills to apply cutting edge research to adult education research and practice in diverse contexts.

Program Objectives

• Explore learning theories and develop the knowledge to plan, teach, and administer programs for adult learners in a wide variety of settings
• Prepare students to promote active learning and reflection among adult learners in various contexts.


Adult, Continuing and Higher Education graduates are prepared to work in colleges, universities, non-profit organizations and corporate training and education programs. Examples of career opportunities include:
• Professor in Adult, Continuing, or Higher Education
• Leading non-profit organizations
• Directing Student Affairs Programs on college or university campuses
• Consultant to Human Resource Development/Talent Management
• Consultant for training development programs in business and industry

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Admission Requirements

Admission Term: Applications for admission are processed for Fall semester only
Application Deadline: First Monday in February
Prerequisites: Master's Degree
GRE Requirement: Optional
Letters of Recommendation: Required and a statement of purpose along with the resume

Degree Completion Requirements

The Adult, Continuing and Higher Education specialization accepts applicants from a broader range of master's study and prepares them for administrative roles in higher education and adult education, including human resource development and community agencies. Pre-Requisite: • ALD 607 - Adult Edu in Changing Society


• ALD 606 – Modern Higher Education in a Changing Society
• ALD 800 – Leading Continuing Education for Professionals
• ALD 801 – Adult Learning Theory & Research
• ALD 802 – Advanced Seminar in Adult Learning & Development
• ALD 889 – ALD Research Seminar/Proposal Writing


Students choose, in consultation with advisors, at least four additional credit hours in the areas of adult learning and development, human resource development, planning/budgeting, leadership, and professional ethics.