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Doctoral Programs

Our PhD programs put our students in the middle of one the best places to influence change. Here in our nation’s capital, they dive into research that addresses today’s most pressing challenges and produce scholarship with real-world connection and immediate impact.

Our doctoral programs are full-time, cohort-based degrees that draw from the breadth and depth of intellectual resources across American University. Their rigorous cross-disciplinary training is rooted in contemporary theory, principles, practices, and research methods in public administration and policy; government and politics; and justice, law, and criminology. Students come to American University for the chance to study firsthand with experts and work closely with prominent scholars whose cutting-edge research activities and professional engagements play key roles in national and global issues.

We pride ourselves in developing the next generation of leading scholars. Indeed, we encourage students throughout the course of their graduate school careers to present papers at major academic conferences, co-author papers with faculty members, publish in top journals, and seek prestigious awards. By the time our students complete the program, they have already produced methodologically sound, socially relevant research that makes important contributions to knowledge and theory. They are prepared for university teaching and research or a career as an authority and leader within their respective fields.

More Information About Doctoral Programs

PhD in Justice, Law & Criminology

PhD Justice, Law & Criminology

Prepare for university teaching and research, and a career as an authority and leader in these fields.

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PhD in Political Science

PhD Political Science

Dive deeply into the policy and politics of official Washington and produce meaningful research with profound impact.

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PhD in Public Administration

PhD Public Administration

Produce methodologically sound, socially relevant research that makes important contributions to knowledge and theory.

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