Doctor of Philosophy in Organizational Leadership


The Doctor of Philosophy in Organizational Leadership (Ph.D.) has been developed to prepare followers of Christ for active participation across a wide range of professions including business, ministry, government, and education. The degree can be completed 100% online or in combination with on-campus classes.

Working individuals will be prepared in this program to identify and understand the opportunities and complexities of leading with the purpose of creating transformative organizations and communities from a Christian perspective. Emphasizing the role of followers within the leadership process brings a unique perspective to the program. Students will be prepared to lead with a focus on the following:

  • Leadership philosophy and practice
  • Analyzing organizational change and culture
  • Team performance and engagement
  • Human Services
  • Coaching and Teaching
  • Conducting field/social research

Quick Facts

  • Accredited with SACSCOC, TRACS, and ABHE
  • Transfer in up to 9 approved credit hours
  • 48-hour doctoral degree program
  • 97% of graduates reported that a Luther Rice education improved the quality of their ministry experience
  • The degree can be completed 100% online
  • 2 core courses require one-week-long modules (attend online via Zoom or on-campus)
  • Tuition is $627 per credit hour

Program Introduction Video



Course Listings

Download Ph.D. course listings (PDF)

Potential Careers

  • Executive Leadership
  • Consultant
  • Organizational Strategist
  • Pastor
  • Professor
  • Social Science Researcher
  • For-Profit and Non-Profit Leadership

Admissions Requirements

  • Ph.D. applicants must possess a Master's degree, of at least 30 credit hours, from an institution with accreditation recognized by the Council for Higher Education Accreditation (CHEA) or the U.S. Department of Education. Unaccredited graduate degrees may be considered but will be evaluated according to the criteria outlined in the Luther Rice catalog. 
  • The minimum cumulative GPA in approved graduate-level work is a 3.0 (on 4.0 scale).
  • Submission of a five-page research paper adhering to the Graduate Committee guidelines (available from the Admissions Office).
  • Other general admissions requirements.

Frequently Asked Questions

  • Are the courses designed for 8 weeks, 16 weeks, or longer?  The PhD courses are 15 weeks in Spring and Fall, 11 weeks in Summer.
  • Is the PhD program self-paced for each student?  Each course has a syllabus detailing exactly what and when assignments are due. The student can schedule their time during the week and semester to meet the due dates. Generally, there is no particular time you need to be online or engaged (except for the 2 one-week modules attended on-campus or via Zoom).
  • Are Discussion Boards required for each course?  It depends on the course. However, we do utilize a discussion board as a way to activley interact with the professor and other students.
  • What is the timeframe to complete the entire program?  Some current students are on track to complete the program in 3 years. To be safe, we suggest anywhere between 3 to 5 years depending on the student's course load.
  • Are textbooks included in the cost of tuition for each course, or do they need to be purchased separtely?  Textbooks are purchased separately. However, when comparing our tuition and fees to other schools, we intentionally priced ourselves as one of the most affordable (on purpose for the sake of the student, certainly not because of quality).
  • Is there the possiblity of transferring credits into the program?  Yes, we will transfer in up to 9 credit hours of approved work from another institution.
  • Could some coursework and assignments completed during the program be utilized for content towards the dissertation?  Yes. This we believe is one fo the main selling points of the program. The committee structured the program so that the student does not have to wait until the end of the program to begin thinking about the dissertation. Instead, many of the upfront courses are structured in such a way that the content and coursework are meant to inform the dissertation planning process.


Contact the Enrollment Team for more details on these requirements at 770-484-1204 ext. 5758 or

Program Coordinator

Dr. Rusty Ricketson

770-484-1204 ext. 5616

If you have any questions, please feel free to contact Dr. Ricketson personally anytime, or you can reach the Enrollment Team at or 770-484-1204.