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Strengthen your skills in leadership, advocacy, communication, and program development and evaluation. This program also covers such topics as research methodology, human development and behaviors, understanding diverse populations, child and adolescent services, addictive behaviors, family issues, and aging, grief, and bereavement. People who choose this program are often interested in non-clinical/non-treatment leadership, advocacy, or consulting positions in social and behavioral service organizations, or faculty positions in higher educational institutions. This degree program is not designed to meet licensure requirements for the counseling, psychology, or social work professions.

Outcome goals and graduates' proficiency levels

Each doctoral program and specialization is designed around expected learning outcomes (see Expected Program Outcomes below). End of program performance is determined during the comprehensive exam and dissertation process. Because the work is unique to each learner's dissertation or research topic and the criteria for evaluation are aligned to that work, we do not collect data on proficiency levels for doctoral programs.

Doctor of Philosophy (PhD) in Advanced Studies in Human Behavior specialization

  • General Advanced Studies in Human Behavior

Quality and Professional Relevance

  • The program complements Capella's broad range of social and behavioral science offerings at the bachelor's, master's, and doctoral levels.
  • All Advanced Studies in Human Behavior faculty have a doctoral degree.
  • More than 600 organizations—including corporations, health care organizations, and community colleges—invest in their employees by partnering with Capella to offer discounted education programs.

Expected Program Outcomes

  1. Evaluate relevant theories and best practices in the human behavior field.
  2. Conduct valid, reliable, and ethical research in the field of social and behavioral sciences.
  3. Integrate ethical and legal standards into professional practice within the human behavior field.
  4. Lead the design, development, and evaluation of interdisciplinary programs and services to address key social and behavioral issues.
  5. Evaluate factors that affect individual or group perception and response to social and behavioral issues and services.
  6. Integrate multicultural awareness and respect for diversity in professional service in the human behavior field.
  7. Communicate professionally through writing and effective interactions.

Doctoral Counseling-Related Degree Program Graduates

Data from graduates across all counseling-related doctoral programs have been combined for these Career Outcomes results.

The graphs below show some key findings from Capella's Alumni Outcomes Survey. We use this information to help improve our courses, programs and services and to give you an idea of how alumni are using their degrees.

Career Preparation
  All Counseling-Related Doctoral Degrees

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Career Preparation
All Counseling-Related Doctoral Degrees

The skills and knowledge have been immediately applicable to my career: 88%

My degree has positioned me to achieve my professional ambitions: 70%

Capellas competency based curriculum has prepared me for the needs of my profession: 75%

Percentage of respondents who answered "strongly agree" or "agree."
Source: Responses to the Alumni Outcomes Survey one year after graduation. The data were collected during Q3 2017 - Q1 2018.

Career & Professional Accomplishments
  All Counseling-Related Doctoral Degrees

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Career and Professional Accomplishments
All Counseling-Related Doctoral Degrees

Made a significant contribution to my profession: 50%

Successfully changed jobs and-or-careers: 33%

Assumed leadership responsibilities: 33%

Received a salary increase: 50%

Received a promotion: 25%

Multiple factors, including prior experience, age, geography, and degree field, affect career outcomes, and Capella does not guarantee a job, promotion, salary increase, or other career growth.

Percentage of respondents who indicated they had accomplished each item.

Source: Responses to the Alumni Outcomes Survey one year after graduation. The data were collected during Q3 2017 – Q1 2018.

Doctoral Counseling-Related Degree Program Graduates

Data from graduates across all counseling-related doctoral programs have been combined for these Student Experience results.

The graphs below show some key findings from Capella's Alumni Outcomes Survey. We use this information to help improve our courses, programs and services and to give you an idea of how alumni feel about Capella and what general skills and abilities they gained.

Satisfaction With Capella
All Counseling-Related Doctoral Degrees

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Satisfaction with Capella
All Counseling-Related Doctoral Degrees

I have or intend to recommend Capella : 63%

I am satisfied with my Capella education : 100%

Capella gave me the most efficient direct path to completing my degree : 100%

Percentage of respondents who answered affirmatively.
Source: Responses to the Alumni Outcomes Survey one year after graduation. The data were collected during Q3 2017 - Q1 2018.

Skills & Abilities
All Counseling-Related Doctoral Degrees

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Improvements in Skills & Abilities
All Counseling-Related Doctoral Degrees

Write clearly, accurately, and professionally; use sources appropriately : 100%

Communicate thoughts and ideas in varied settings : 100%

Show ethical conduct reflecting values and beliefs of discipline : 100%

Show knowledge of field; respect contributions of other fields : 100%

Analyze theoretical issues or investigate real-world phenomena, create knowledge : 100%

Locate, evaluate and communicate information; address legal, professional, other issues : 100%

Critically examine, analyze, and evaluate thinking using intellectual standards and creativity : 50%

Critically evaluate, select, and use discipline-appropriate technology : 100%

Show appreciation for group and individual differences : 100%

Demonstrate effective leadership in diverse environments : 50%

Apply the specialized knowledge associated with professional practice area : 100%

Percentage of respondents who rated themselves as "proficient" or "exceptional" on ability to demonstrate the skill or ability on the job.
Source: Responses to the Alumni Outcomes Survey one year after graduation. The data were collected during Q3 2017 - Q1 2018.

Earn Your Doctoral Degree

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Become an expert in your field. Enroll in an online PhD, PsyD, or EdD program at Capella.

"I'm able to talk to victims of domestic violence about how to reduce their likelihood of being a victim. This is a real-world application of the Scholar-Practitioner Model and I am honored to be a part of it."

Jesse Collins, PhD

2010 Graduate

School of Social and Behavioral Sciences

Specialization in  Psychology