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IOU Open University online Ph.D programs

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PhD Programs


  • Social and Cultural Studies
  • Philosophy and Religious Studies
  • Health Sciences (including Oriental Medicine)
  • Economic Studies


The individualized dual degree PhD Program with the Universidad Azteca and the Universidad Central de Nicaragua requires that the adult learner assumes a great deal of responsibility for his/her own learning process. The responsibility begins with the selection of a field of study which fits in the learner's special interests, background, and goals.

The program makes it possible for the learner to choose any area of study that would not otherwise be available, either because it is not offered in any university, or because it is not offered at one convenient to the learner. It also allows for interdisciplinary degrees, such as combining Anthropology and Sociology, Education and Psychology, Philosophy and Religion, Political Science, and Peace Studies.

A Masters degree from an accredited institution of higher learning is required. The learner should also have the background skills appropriate for the particular degree plan.  Once graduate transcripts are received the level of education and work experience is evaluated, and advice and enrollment is then determined.

Intercultural Open University Foundation along with its international partners, Universidad Azteca and the Universidad Central de Nicaragua have strong resources and offers study programs, such as Individualized Ph.D. Programs in the fields of Education, Sociology, Psychology, Health Science, Anthropology, Religion, Literature, Philosophy, Symbolic Studies, History, Political Science, Health Science, and Economic Studies.

Some of the fields in which learners are currently pursuing degrees include Peace Studies, Human Services, Women's Studies, Sustainable Development, and Environmental Sciences. IOU Foundation is open to well-formulated plans in almost any discipline.

Study Choices and Opportunities

Learners have the possibility to prepare dissertations in the following subjects (or combination of subjects):

Anthropology, Philosophy (Eastern and Western, Ancient or Contemporary), Education (including Educational Planning, Adult Learning, etc.), Health Science (with possibilities in Alternative Medicine and Oriental Medicine), Political Science, History, Literature, Economics, Management, Religion (emphasis: Comparative Religious Studies), Psychology (General, Developmental, Industrial, and Diagnostical/Therapeutical), Sociology, and Symbolic Studies (Art and Myth Analysis).


Ph.D. Candidates take as few as 24 months to complete the Program or as long 48 months. It all depends on the time the learner has available and the study speed.

The learner schedules the time to meet his or her needs.