Doctor of Philosophy (PhD) – Education

The programme will enable students to become efficiently equipped with all the necessary skills and knowledge in order to advance in international educational organisations in public and private sectors and achieve positive results when operating in executive positions.

The Rationale of the programme can be summarized as follows:

  1. At a general level of higher education policy:
    • There is a general need for more PhD graduates in Zambia and sub-Saharan Africa and thus a need for more PhD programmes (British Council and DAAD, 2018).
    • This PhD programme responds to the stated needs of the ‘Educating Our Future’ policy (Ministry of Education, 2008) for:
      • More research to be undertaken within the higher education sector in Zambia.
      • Alternative modes of higher education delivery, such as online education, to enhance access and equity in higher education in Zambia.
      • Greater access to, and use and access of ICT in higher education in Zambia.
  2. At the level of programmatic content and structure:
    • The structured online approach through both taught courses and structured supervision of the dissertation provides a unique self-directed learning experience for the student that differentiates this programme from other programmes offered and promotes a practical application of the learning generated through the programme.
    • There is a strong emphasis within the programme on enabling candidates to use the power of research to drive systemic change in their organisations and to realize their leadership potential.
  3. At the level of the candidate students who can access the programme:
    • The online nature of the programme facilitates the ability of people in full-time employment to access the programme, while remaining accessible to individuals who wish to be full time students.
    • The programme emphasizes sharing of professional experiences with instructors and peers and is particularly relevant to mid-term career and senior professionals.
  4. At the level of Unicaf University competence and expertise:
    • Education is an area of expertise that exists within the broader context of Unicaf University expertise in education, social sciences and technology.
    • There is the competence and interest to provide candidate students with high quality tutorials and supervision, resulting in a high-quality experience and a high-quality award for our students.

Aims of the Programme

  • Develop a sound understanding of the relevant conceptual and theoretical underpinnings of the student’s chosen area of research within the wider range of education.
  • Promote a detailed understanding of applicable techniques for research.
  • Create and interpret knowledge through original research.
  • Enhance student’s performance as a reflective practitioner and their professional practice.

Objectives of the Programme

The objectives of the programme are to provide a comprehensive and diversified learning programme that is responsive to the education sector, the social and economic needs of the national human resources development. By the end of the programme, students should be able to:

  1. Drive systemic change in policy making, primary, secondary and tertiary education as emerging educators.
  2. Pursue positions in academic institutions or academic organisations and be interested in conducting, among others research within the areas of education, education policy, inclusive education and educational leadership.
  3. Promote inclusive education, quality and equity in education, in line with national policies.
  4. Support equity -fairness- and equality rather than just equality in education.
  5. Monitor the study and development of educational policy evaluation and implementation.
  6. Conduct primary research within the area of education.
  7. Address educational management inefficiencies.
  8. Demonstrate the ability to develop a curriculum appropriate to the target level.
  9. Demonstrate all the necessary skills mandatory for a career in education and in leading academic institutions.

Programme Learning Outcomes

At the end of the programme, the student will be expected to:

  1. Practice role as advanced researchers and/or professional practitioners in the area of education.
  2. Develop a comprehensive, contemporary and advanced knowledge of content, research methods and theoretical context in an area related practice. Through this, students will make an important contribution to knowledge informed by original research and scholarship.
  3. Apply complex concepts, and develop creative solutions in a creative and adaptive way that will lead to a breakthrough thinking in the field.
  4. Make informed judgments on complex issues in the field of education, often in the absence of complete data.
  5. Solve problems through skills in evidence-based decision-making, leading to institutional change.
  6. Communicate ideas and conclusions clearly and effectively to specialist and non-specialist audience.
  7. Develop environments of inclusion, transparency and widely shared vision and goals.
  8. Evaluate their own skills as a leader and the performance of their team(s) and organisation and modify strategies accordingly.
  9. Critique the mission, process and outcomes of specific learning initiatives through targeted questions.
  10. Drive innovation through technology-enabled learning formats.
  11. Apply reflective monitoring skills about work and professional practice.
  12. Interpret gathered qualitative and quantitative data to assess the status of organisational priorities.
  13. Produce a culminating dissertation that demonstrates in practice the effective application of educational theories and concepts.


Foundation Courses

Course Code Course Title Credits
UU-DOC-IND100-ZM Induction Module 0.00

Core requirements (required modules)

Course Code Course Title Credits
UU-DOC-801-ZM Quantitative Research Methods 30.00
UU-DOC-802-ZM Qualitative Research Methods 30.00
UU-DOC-803-ZM Current Issues in Research 30.00
UU-DOC-804-ZM Leadership 30.00
UU-DOC-900-1-ZM Dissertation (Part 1) 60.00
UU-DOC-900-2-ZM Dissertation (Part 2) 60.00
UU-DOC-900-3-ZM Dissertation (Part 3) 60.00
UU-DOC-900-4-ZM Dissertation (Part 4) 60.00
UU-DOC-995-ZM Doctoral Dissertation Examination 0.00
Course Information

Related Courses