Ph.D. Programs in Maryland: Overview of Popular Ph.D. Programs

Maryland is home to about 100 public and private colleges and universities. Compare four of the schools in Maryland offering Ph.D. degrees to determine which schools might be right for you.

School Ranking Overview

While many schools in Maryland offer doctorates, this article examines three public universities and one public not-for-profit institution that offer Doctor of Philosophy (Ph.D.) degrees, often regarded as terminal research degrees. The top three out of the four schools profiled in this article are ranked in each of the following categories:

  • Program Variety
  • Tuition
  • Graduation Rate
  • Student-to-Faculty Ratio

Program Variety

Many aspiring professionals, such as future medical researchers and college professors, can seek to earn their doctorates at schools in Maryland. The universities listed below are ranked according to total number of programs offered. Both full- and part-time doctoral study options may be available.

1. University of Maryland - College Park

Out of all four schools discussed in this article, this public university located in the town of College Park offers the most programs overall. In fact, graduate students can choose from more than 70 Ph.D. programs. Some of this school's Ph.D. degree options are listed below:

  • American Studies
  • Animal Sciences
  • Anthropology
  • Applied Mathematics
  • Architecture
  • Astronomy
  • Biochemistry
  • Biophysics
  • Education
  • Physics
  • Public Health
  • Toxicology
  • Urban and Regional Planning and Design
  • Women's Studies

2. Johns Hopkins University

This private postsecondary institution based in Baltimore comes in second place for total number of program options available. However, Johns Hopkins University is among the top universities in the country receiving federal research and development funds, which strengthens the core of its doctoral research programs. Ph.D.s are available in the following areas of focus:

  • Biological Chemistry
  • Biostatistics
  • Cellular and Molecular Physiology
  • Epidemiology
  • Human Genetics
  • Immunology
  • International Health
  • International Studies
  • Medicine
  • Mental Health
  • Molecular Biology
  • Molecular Biophysics
  • Neuroscience
  • Nursing

3. University of Maryland - Baltimore County: Baltimore, MD

Doctoral degree seekers in Maryland may want to consider this public university also located in Baltimore. It offers more than 20 Ph.D. programs, with studies available in the following subject areas:

  • Biochemistry
  • Biological Sciences
  • Chemical and Biochemical Engineering
  • Chemistry
  • Computer Engineering
  • Computer Science
  • Marine-Estuarine Environmental Sciences
  • Mechanical Engineering
  • Neurosciences and Cognitive Sciences
  • Physics
  • Psychology
  • Public Policy
  • Statistics


Many times, college students consider costs when weighing their options for graduate school. The rankings below are based on tuition data for the 2013-2014 year, as noted by the National Center for Education Statistics (NCES).

1. Morgan State University

This public university located in Baltimore offered the most reasonable tuition of all four highlighted schools for the 2013-2014 academic year. Students eligible for in-state graduate tuition rates were only responsible for $6,480. Those who qualified as non-residents were charged $12,636. Additional fees for both students were $1,350.

2. University of Maryland - Baltimore County

In-state tuition rates for graduate students at this university totaled $9,540 for the 2013-2014 year. Out-of-state tuition ran $15,804 for the same year. In addition to tuition, both graduate students were responsible for additional fees of $2,142.

3. University of Maryland - College Park

Slightly higher, were the 2013-2014 tuition rates imposed by this university. Students classified as residents paid $10,314, while those considered non-residents paid $22,248. Additional fees for the academic year were $1,446.

Graduation Rate

The NCES offers information about graduation rates for bachelor's degree seekers. While information is not available for those pursuing Ph.D. degrees, this information could provide an overall view of the emphasis placed on program completion as well as the dedication of fellow students.

1. Johns Hopkins University

Out of all bachelor's degree students at this university who began their studies in 2007, 93% earned their degree in six years' time. Additionally, out of those who began their studies in 2012, 97% returned for a second year in 2013.

2. University of Maryland - College Park

In the same span of years noted above, the graduation rate for bachelor's degree seekers at this university was 84%. The retention rate for those who began to earn their bachelor's degree in 2012 and returned in 2013 was 95%.

3. University of Maryland - Baltimore County: Baltimore, MD

Though not as impressive, this school beat out Morgan State University for third place in graduation rate. Sixty-five percent of students who began to earn their bachelor's degree in 2007 finished within six years. Of the bachelor's degree seekers who began in 2012, 87% returned in 2013.

Student-to-Faculty Ratio

Intimate classes and the opportunity for one-on-one time with professors is often paramount for college students, particularly at the graduate degree level. This ranking takes that into account and factors details offered by the NCES for the 2013 year.

1. Johns Hopkins University

Johns Hopkins University secures another top slot with its impressive student-to-faculty ration. On average in 2013, there was one faculty member for every ten students.

2. Morgan State University

At this public university the student-to-faculty ratio is 16-to-1. Students also enjoy a relatively small campus population, with just around 7,500 attendees noted in 2013.

3. University of Maryland - College Park

More than 35,000 students were noted as having attended this school in 2013. However, University of Maryland - College Park managed to average one faculty member for every 18 students.

Maryland Schools: At a Glance

School NameLocationSchool Type Programs OfferedArea Ranking
Johns Hopkins UniversityBaltimore, MDPrivate, not-for-profitDoctoral Degrees #2 Program Variety,
#1 Graduation Rate,
#1 Student-to-Faculty Ratio
Morgan State UniversityBaltimore, MDPublicDoctoral Degrees #1 Tuition,
#2 Student-to-Faculty Ratio
University of Maryland - Baltimore County Baltimore, MDPublicDoctoral Degrees #2 Tuition,
#3 Graduation Rate
University of Maryland - College ParkCollege Park, MDPublicDoctoral Degrees#1 Program Variety,
#3 Tuition,
#2 Graduation Rate,
#3 Student-to-Faculty Ratio

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