Business Ph.D.


No matter what your background is (e.g., business, engineering, philosophy, sciences), if you are intellectually curious, have an analytical mind, and enjoy challenges, you should consider the Ph.D. program in Accounting at the University of Kansas. The program prepares you to be a new scholar ready to enter the professorate. You will have the opportunity to work with internationally known faculty members, on a variety of research projects. Faculty research interests include utilizing advanced technology to improve decision-making processes, economics of the auditing profession, effects of new financial reporting standards, causes and consequences of financial reporting failures, and many other topics.

The doctoral program in Accounting at the University of Kansas includes a combination of formal coursework, informal interaction with faculty and other students, and hands-on experience in both teaching and research. Currently, the University of Kansas program trains students in two areas of accounting: Auditing and Financial Accounting. Students receive financial support including tuition waivers and a portion of subsidized student health insurance. Students have access to a wide variety of databases typically available only at premier doctoral granting institutions. The small size of the program allows you to have close interaction with the faculty.

We look for three characteristics in our applicants: i) an outstanding student as demonstrated by prior degrees, GPA, and GMAT scores; ii) some professional experience; iii) some academic experience in teaching and/or research. Not all of our current students have both academic and professional accounting experience. We are looking for people we believe are most likely to succeed, rather than following a fixed formula. While successful candidates for admission are expected to have a background in accounting, applicants without such background will be considered provided they agree to undertake additional coursework in accounting as part of their doctoral program.

Area Coursework

1. DSCI 920: Probability for Business Research
2. DSCI 921: Statistics for Business Research
3. BE 917: Advanced Managerial Economics
4. PRE 810: Regression Analysis OR an equivalent course
5. ECON 715: Elementary Econometrics OR an equivalent course
6. DSCI 922: Advanced Regression OR an equivalent course

Area of Concentration (Major): Auditing and Financial tracks

7. ACCT 995: Introduction to Accounting Research
8. ACCT 995: Seminar in Financial Accounting Research I
9. ACCT 995: Seminar in Auditing Research I
Financial track:
10. ACCT 995: Seminar in Financial Accounting Research II
11. FIN 937: Seminar in Business Finance OR another Finance or Economics Seminar
12. FIN 938: Seminar in Investments OR another Finance or Economics Seminar
Auditing track:
10. ACCT 995: Seminar in Auditing Research II
11. FIN 937: Seminar in Business Finance
12. MGMT 906: Behavioral Research Methods

Supporting Areas (Minor)

A minor concentration typically consists of two or more additional courses from the following list of research methodology courses, plus two or more courses from a second concentration area. Alternatively, a minor concentration requires four or more additional courses from the following list if there is no second concentration area. Methodology courses not shown in the following list can be substituted with approval (for example, certain Math courses).
13-16. ECON 817: Econometrics I OR
ECON 818: Econometrics II OR
ECON 916: Advanced Econometrics II OR
DSCI 935: Seminar in Optimization OR
PSYC 791: Statistical Methods in Psychology II OR
PSYC 893: Multivariate Analysis OR
PSYC 894: Multilevel Modeling OR
PSYC 895: Categorical Data Analysis OR
PSYC 896: Structural Equation Modeling I OR
PSYC 990: Methods for Clustering and Classification OR
PSYC 991: Longitudinal Data Analysis OR
PRE 811: Analysis of Variance OR
PRE 905: Multivariate Analysis OR
PRE 906: Structural Equation Modeling I OR
PRE 908: Structural Equation Modeling II

Program Requirements and Information

Area of Concentration
Most students admitted in accounting typically will select that area as their concentration. However, an aspirant, with the assistance of his or her faculty advisor and the area faculty, may propose an interdisciplinary area of concentration. The aspirant must take at least five advanced courses in the area of concentration. These courses may include those offered outside the School of Business.
Supporting Areas
Coursework in the area of concentration is supplemented and strengthened by study in one or two supporting areas. A supporting area is one that supplements and complements the area of concentration. The aspirant will satisfy the supporting area requirement by taking at least four advanced courses in the supporting areas (at least two courses in each of two supporting areas, or at least four courses in one supporting area). Courses recommended for preparation for the qualifiers may not be included in satisfying the supporting area requirement.
Research Methodology
For successful qualifier assessment, the student's program of study should include adequate preparation in research methodology.
Degree Completion Timeline
Years 1-2: Coursework* Year 3: Comprehensive Exams Year 4: Dissertation Proposal Year 5: Dissertation Defense (Some students can complete the program in four years.)
Over the past several years, our PhD graduates have been placed at schools such as the University of Pittsburgh, University of Waterloo, Iowa State University, University of Nebraska-Lincoln and Rutgers University.  A complete list of placements can be found here.