Doctor of Philosophy in Business Administration

The Doctor of Philosophy in business administration is a highly specialized research degree designed to prepare students who wish to pursue academic and research careers in a particular field of business. 

The minimum admission requirement is a bachelor’s degree from a regionally accredited college or university, although most applicants have completed a master’s degree in an appropriate field. Applicants whose degrees are in fields other than their proposed area of focus are expected to obtain the necessary background either before or soon after admission to the program. Scores on the Graduate Record Examination or the Graduate Management Admission Test are required; scores may not be more than five years old. Students from countries where English is not the official language and non-native English speakers are required to take either the Test of English as a Foreign Language (TOEFL) or the academic International English Language Testing System (IELTS). Exceptions may be made for applicants who hold a degree from a university located in a country in which English is the official language and also the language of instruction at the university. Minimum acceptable scores for TOEFL are 600 or above (paper exam) or 100 or above (Internet exam); for IELTS, an overall band score of 7.0 with no individual band score below 6.0. The Doctoral Committee does not use specific cutoff points for grade averages and test scores. In making admission decisions it carefully reviews each applicant’s entire record and makes its selection on a competitive basis in keeping with enrollment limitations.

The doctoral program consists of two major parts: the pre-dissertation stage and the dissertation stage. The pre-dissertation stage normally involves two years of studies described in an individual study plan developed by the student under the guidance of a committee of at least three faculty advisors. The objective of the dissertation stage is to have the student apply the obtained theoretical and practical knowledge and analytical methods to the resolution of a research problem. The research should be original and result in a contribution, either applied or theoretical, to the existing body of knowledge.

All course work, other educational activities, and required comprehensive evaluations must be completed within five years of matriculation. The total program must be finished in seven years.

The doctoral program is administered and supervised by the Associate Dean and the Committee on Doctoral Studies. For more detailed information on the program, see the Handbook on the Doctoral Program, available in the Doctoral Program Office.