Doctorate degrees: honorary and earned

Discussion in 'Baptist Colleges / Seminaries' started by Siegfried, Oct 30, 2002.

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Doctorate degrees: honorary and earned

  1. I don't have a doctorate, but I would like an honorary.

    48.5%
  2. I don't have a doctorate, but I would like to earn one.

    36.4%
  3. I don't have a doctorate, and I don't really care to have one.

    12.1%
  4. I have an earned doctorate in some field of Bible.

    3.0%
  5. I have an earned doctorate in another field.

    0 vote(s)
    0.0%
  6. I gave myself a doctorate.

    0 vote(s)
    0.0%
  7. I have an honorary doctorate.

    0 vote(s)
    0.0%
  8. I have both an honorary and an earned doctorate.

    0 vote(s)
    0.0%
  1. Siegfried

    Siegfried
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    Do you have Dr. in front of your name? If so, how did you get it?

    I'm going to try to set this up so you don't have to vote to view the results. Regardless, I'll give an option for those who don't have a doctorate.
     
  2. Phillip

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    What do you mean by "I gave myself a doctorate? Is this someone who just calls themselves a doctor or is this something else I am not familiar with?

    Just curious?
     
  3. Siegfried

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    I just heard of a fellow that started his own seminary and gave himself a doctorate, so I wondered if anyone would admit to it. :D
     
  4. Bible-boy

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    How about a choice for those of us who are just entering a Masters Program and don't know if we want to continue on in school after that or not?

    BTW, Siegfried, did you get the private message that I sent to you?

    [ October 31, 2002, 06:12 AM: Message edited by: BibleboyII ]
     
  5. Siegfried

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    No matter how hard I try, there's always an option I leave out. [​IMG]

    Got it, BB2. I'll e-mail you today or tomorrow. You don't have class tonight, do you?
     
  6. Jonathan

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    I just heard of a fellow that started his own seminary and gave himself a doctorate, so I wondered if anyone would admit to it. :D </font>[/QUOTE]I have a good friend who, while president of a Baptist college, granted himself an honorary doctorate.
     
  7. Dr. Bob

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    Many small churches start a "college" ministry, then have their pastor give an honorary (or very suspecisiouly-'earned') to a fellow pastor . . who then gives one to him. Credible? I think common.

    Saw a listing of a conference in the Sword of the Lord and every single speaker had a doctorate. Only 1 (by my estimation) was legitimate.

    My college, Pillsbury BBC in Minnesota, founded in 1854 and recognized as a legit school that COULD give honorary degrees, quit giving such honorary doctorates because of the "politics".

    A applaud that. In the old days, an honorary degree was given to a grizzled veteran who COULD have stayed in school and earned it, but over 30-40 years "earned" it by outstanding leadership and ministry.

    Not now. Sadly. [​IMG]
     
  8. Siegfried

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    The poll wasn't intended to push an agenda, but since you brought it up . . .

    I completely agree with you. The proliferation of honorary doctorates is a shame to Baptists.

    Like you, I don't deny their proper place, but they've become a stamp of validation for guys in the prime of their ministry. My opinion is that too many of those men passed on the chance to deepen their ministry through the challenge and rigor of advanced education.

    Why does a 40 year old need an honorary doctorate? If he's faithful, his faithfulness will provide all the credibility he needs. If his ministry is shallow, putting "Dr." in front of his name will only fool the simple.

    I think they're appropriate when they're rare and reserved for men who are in the twilight of many decades of faithful ministry. Thank God for those men. They deserve public honor.
     
  9. All about Grace

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    ...and it is an insult to those of us who have made the sacrifices required to earn one.
     
  10. Dr. Bob

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    Another point - external degrees for doctorates are proliferating. Many "earned" degrees are really just puchased or honorary (for doing a minimal amount of work).

    Much of MY graduate work was external, so I am NOT taking shots at that. Lots of good schools out there that have high standards and requirements for such degrees.

    But had an evangelist in and asked about his new "doctorate". He had to write 8 short papers to "earn" it. Can you imagine that? I was appalled . . but he took pride in "earning" it.

    I have only great admiration and respect for those who did it the old fashioned way. I always wish I had stayed in school and did the whole ThM and ThD route. Those few are to be praised!
     
  11. Hal Parker

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    Why do people covet an honorary doctorate? I think it is because they get to have the respect that comes from having a doctorate without having to do the work.

    In my opinion, someone who calls himself Dr. Whatever who didn't earn it is dishonest. They get to put Dr. in front of their name on brochures and such. That gives the impression that they are more credible than they really are. To me that is also deceitful.

    If we get upset because people gamble to get money they didn't earn then we should be upset with people who get doctorates who didn't earn them.

    I know of one IFB college that gives out two honorary doctorates each year. They don't give out any earned doctorates. The university I go to. (I am working on a real one.) Has given out some honorary doctorates but they are few and far between. When an IFB college hands them out like candy then the honorary doctorate is no longer a real honor because it is so commonplace. When a university like I go to gives out an honorary doctorate it is really an honor because it doesn't happen so often.
     
  12. Rev. G

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    I agree. If someone earns an honorary doctorate, they should remember that it is simply honorary and not employ the title. IMHO.

    Rev. G
     
  13. Siegfried

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    Good analogy. Maybe we should be more upset with the institution that passes them out, though. I can imagine that it would be tough to turn one down, if for no other reason than the possibility it would be taken as a slap in the face.

    Best wishes in your studies.
     
  14. All about Grace

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    Dr Bob,

    I concur. The earned Dr's degree can be deceptive as well. I have a friend who turned in a few short papers which he had basically already written and received a doctorate from a small IFB school. Fortunately if you receive a PhD in one of our SBC institutions you are going to earn that baby. My cramped fingers, strained eyes, calloused buns, stiff back, and empty bank account can attest to that fact :D
     
  15. rlvaughn

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    This proliferation of honorary and "easily" earned doctorates is evidence that the desire to be called "Doctor" is greater than the desire to learn what it takes to be one. The original idea of the honorary doctorate was to recognize certain veterans of spiritual warfare as having earned by experience and service the respect due to and equivalent of a doctor's degree.
     
  16. Rev. G

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    Amen, brother! I just took my orals last week, and that was no "walk in the park," let me tell you! Neither were those papers I did in seminars! Those babies had to be researched, well-written, presented and defended (and with some profs., re-written).

    An example of someone who earned an honorary doctorate is Asahel Nettleton. He was a "grizzled veteran", if you will, who had won about 30,000-35,000 people to Christ. He taught at the Theological Institute of Connecticut (later Hartford Theological Seminary, now defunct). He had not only spent years in the ministry, but he spent years investing in the lives of others. Therefore he was "awarded" with the honorary degree. His attitude towards it? He didn't really want to accept it, but he did so that he wouldn't dishonor or insult those who wanted to present it to him. Ah! What a man of God!

    Rev. G
     
  17. Dr. Bob

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    That is a good story Rev G. Truly most men of God I know would shy away from the trappings of the Twiddle D.D. type doctorate!

    And kudos again to those who got it the old fashioned way - they worked for it!

    p.s. I have a 36 page booklet on the History of Fundamental Baptists in Wisconsin. A colleague of mine asked if that was my doctoral dissertation. Right. That was the result of one 4-credit class in denominational history. My dissertation (History of Wisconsin for Christian Schools) was published at 215 pages and is still used in 50+ Christian Schools in Wisconsin.

    Often scratch my head and wonder what has happened to academics. And MY degree was mostly external, not nearly the highest quality, and only a D.Min for a busy pastor.

    [ November 06, 2002, 02:44 AM: Message edited by: Dr. Bob Griffin ]
     
  18. stubbornkelly

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    I don't have a particular desire for a doctoral degree. It's not the degree that interests me, it's the learning. True, one doesn't have to be in a program to learn, but I find that I'm more disciplined about it when I'm working toward something. That, and having access to mentors and advisors (and their recommendations for reading and such) is excellent.

    'Course, I don't have a bachelor's yet, but that'll come as soon as I've finished my thesis (coming up at 120 pages). Then it's on to law school. [​IMG]
     
  19. Circuitrider

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    I was at a meeting where a pastor of a large church gave out seven doctorates to some older well deserved men. :cool: However, at the next year's conference he gave a doctor's degree to a famous preacher's horse. :eek: Makes me glad I did not graduate from that school....one of your alumnus would be a horse...oh and you should have seen what the horse did in the middle aisle to show his appreciation. :D :D

    The good thing is the preacher knows better now. [​IMG]
     
  20. Helen

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    :D :D
    I have a Ph.D. of Phriendship, full certificate hanging on my wall, given to me by a senior physicist at Stanford Research Institute...

    it's from the Heavenly College of Spiritualities and Technicalities, Unlimited and reads
    "Awarded entirely as a result of Amazing Grace apart from any merit whatsoever."

    There is a lovely quote in the middle of it
    "Not by might, not by power, but by My Spirit"

    It continues, "The highly coveted Doctor of Phriendship degree is the only advanced degree not based on works, but soley on grace and unmerited favor. Note: This degree can not be attained by hard work, self-effort, trying harder, or paying money under the table.."

    I know it's real because there is a big seal at the bottom that says "Gen-U-ine" and it is signed by Ima Knut Case, who is the High Muckety Muck and Swami Rami Sonofagun, for the international and cross-cultural endorsement.

    I love it!

    It is, of course, framed and hanging on my wall...

    IT IS!!

    :D :D :D

    [ November 19, 2002, 10:48 PM: Message edited by: Helen ]
     

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