50th Anniversary

Academics at Prescott College

Area of Study:
Ph.D. in Sustainability Education

Taking Prescott College to Where Students Live and Work

Area of Study:
Ph.D. in Sustainability Education

Taking Prescott College to Where Students Live and Work

The Prescott College Limited-Residency Ph.D. program in Sustainability Education views education broadly, as social learning that occurs in settings that are both formal (educational institutions, for example) and non-formal (such as families, community events, media, and businesses). The term “education” is considered to mean both the act or practice of educating or being educated and the study of education as a process.

Education for Sustainability

Education for sustainability is the practice of learning how to achieve global and local sustainable communities. It is a life-long, individual, and social learning progression that challenges the dominant ecological, psychological, economic, and social paradigms.

The desired outcome is an informed, involved citizenry with the social and scientific literacy, commitment, and creative problem-solving skills to engage in responsible individual and cooperative actions toward a sustainable society. Achieving sustainability in all dimensions of human existence depends on adopting an educational paradigm that manifests and supports change toward a sustainable, secure society. The Limited-Residency Ph.D. program in Sustainability Education strives to contribute to synergistic learning and change in consciousness, education, culture – and, ultimately, society.

Individualized Areas of Study

Within the central theme of sustainability education, students create individualized proposals for formal course work and a practicum based on an educational vision. Finally, Ph.D. students undertake an action-oriented dissertation, demonstrating passionate scholarship as well as its application in the sustainability education niche.

Student-Directed Learning 

At Prescott College, programs of study at all levels are individualized; no two paths taken by Ph.D. students are identical. Envision your educational goals, design your course of study, and complete coursework under the guidance of experts. Faculty and advisors work with each student to co-create an individualized concentration. This collaborative approach ensures valuable learning for teacher and student alike.

This design of this highly selective, innovative, and forward-thinking program is especially useful for:

  • Teachers, educators, and community leaders and activists
  • Professional leadership and management staff active in government and non-governmental organizations
  • Business professionals and social entrepreneurs

Hybrid Low-Residency/Online Instruction Model

Prescott College’s Limited-Residency programs are unlike any other educational experience. Students combine self-directed, individually mentored, and online education with brief visits to campus. Our Ph.D. students complete their coursework wherever they live. There is no need to uproot yourself or your family to complete this degree. Your community and workplace becomes your classroom as you design your unique educational experience.

The program is organized into three distinct phases and takes three years to complete for full-time students (12 semester credits per term). Students can do phases 2 and 3 as part-time students if they’d like. The first phase is dedicated to establishing the cohort and completing a common set of core courses (24 credits). The courses are launched in a traditional classroom setting during the first PhD colloquium in August. After the colloquium, students continue with their coursework using Moodle, our online course management system. The second phase is dedicated to student-designed coursework including theory, research, and an optional practicum (28 credits). Phase three includes the dissertation proposal and completing the dissertation (20 credits). The entire program requires 72 credits to complete.


The Prescott College Limited-Residency Ph.D. Program follows a cohort-based learning model with ongoing dialogue between students and faculty. Limited-residency means the time you must actually be at Prescott College is minimal. A total of seven symposia and colloquia provide opportunities for collaboration, interdisciplinary learning, presentations, research, and teaching about topics and issues related to the doctoral students’ programs of study.

Life & Career Outcomes

Life & Career Outcomes
  • Ecological Designer
  • Environmental Educator
  • Non-Profit Manager
  • Sustainability Project Manager

Academic Resources

Academic Resources

Prescott College Library

Library From Above

The Prescott College Library supports the curriculum with a variety of print and electronic resources. Our library catalog  reflects not only our collection but that of more than 30 other libraries in Yavapai county. A system-wide library card allows borrowers to request books from any library in the county.  Online resources include millions of full-text articles available through our article databases, and over 130,000 e-books available through ebrary.  

More Information

Tuition & Fees

Tuition & Fees

Limited-Residency Ph.D Program in Sustainability Education Tuition and Fees