All doctoral program delivered at a distance require prior Texas Higher Education Coordinating Board (THECB) approval. A doctoral program is considered to be offered through off-campus delivery when over half of the semester credit hours, excluding dissertation and research, may be completed without the student being in residence on campus.

The THECB expects all doctoral programs delivered through distance education to meet the following standards:

  • The program is of high quality;
  • It is delivered in a way that preserves this high quality:
  • The program meets a well-documented state need; and
  • The program can be delivered at a reasonable cost.

An institution proposing a doctoral program for distance delivery must have approval to offer the program. For institutions wishing to deliver an existing on-campus doctoral program, the on-campus program must be in good standing with all appropriate review and accreditation organizations. Additionally, the combined enrollments of an on-campus doctoral program and the distance delivery doctoral program must be sufficient to permit the program’s successful continuation.


  • Public Area Notification (unless it is a MITC)
  • Academic Affairs (Approval)
  • THECB (Approval)