When I got my PhD, there was no such thing as a Game Design program at any university. That didn’t stop me. I wrote my dissertation on authorship and roleplaying games, anyway.
There was also no way to self-publish your dissertation as an ebook. So it languished in obscurity until eventually Warehouse23 did me the favor of hosting it. But times have changed and as of today Amazon, Google Play, and Smashwords make it possible for even non-gamers to find and preview my dissertation, and even download a copy. Yay technology!