Emergency Management Doctoral Degree Programs

If you want to study disasters and emergency preparedness at the graduate level, you may consider a doctoral degree in emergency management. In this article, you can find out about prerequisites, curriculum options, and prospects for graduates.

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Essential Information

Doctor of Philosophy (Ph.D.) programs in Emergency Management are designed to train students in the management of emergencies and the prevention of disasters. These programs utilize an interdisciplinary academic approach that is intended to provide both the theoretical and practical knowledge students need to recognize, assess, and minimize the effects of emergencies and disasters. Upon completing the program, graduates are equipped to conduct original research in the area of emergency management and organize and manage emergency organizations.

Emergency management doctoral degree programs generally take four to five years to complete. In order to apply, students must hold a master's degree in emergency management or a related field, and they must submit GRE or GMAT scores, letters of recommendation, and an admissions essay. An admissions interview may also be required.


Doctorate in Emergency Management

Some emergency management doctoral programs are designed so that degree candidates choose a concentration for their studies, such as forensics or public health. Other programs feature a more generalized approach, with no concentration required. Some sample core curriculum course titles are included below:

  • Emergency management research methods
  • Global information systems
  • Damage recovery methods
  • Components of risk assessment
  • At-risk populations and disaster

Popular Career Options

A doctoral degree in emergency management prepares individuals for a range of senior leadership positions in academia, the armed forces, and the corporate and non-profit sectors. Some sample job titles are:

  • Emergency management director
  • Emergency preparedness consultant
  • College professor
  • Researcher

Employment Outlook and Salary Info

The U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) reported that employment of emergency management directors was predicted to grow 6% from 2014-2024, which is about average compared to all job sectors. In May 2015, these professionals earned a median annual salary of $67,330, according to the BLS. Additionally, the BLS projected that employment of postsecondary teachers (college professors) was anticipated to grow 13% during the 2014-2024 decade. These workers earned a median salary of $63,000 annually, per the BLS.

Continuing Education Information

The doctoral degree in emergency management is the terminal degree for this field. Working emergency management professionals often find it advantageous to attend workshops, seminars, and conferences in order to stay on top of the constantly evolving world of natural and man-made disasters.

Earning a doctorate in emergency management helps students build the foundational knowledge and advanced research skills they need for careers in academia. Alternatively, they can pursue executive positions in disaster response organizations.

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