Ph.D. Program | Kent State University

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Student studies with materials laid out around him.

We offer a competitive, high-caliber Ph.D. program that prepares doctoral students to conduct high-quality, scholarly research and teach effectively in the field of business.

The purpose of the Ph.D. program is to develop the intellectual potential of the student through emphasis on specific areas of concentration within the framework of the general field of business administration. Academic objectives are accomplished through close student-faculty working relationships. The program provides the flexibility to allow for a considerable degree of individual design, based upon the career needs and objectives of the student.

As a Ph.D. student, you will learn to balance research, teaching and service. Through advanced coursework, mentorships and research seminars, you will acquire the knowledge necessary to become an expert in your area of specialization, develop the conceptual and methodological skills required to conduct original research and prepare for the responsibility and challenge of undergraduate and graduate business education through classroom experience.


Paid Fellowships

Ph.D. students are awarded a Teaching and Research Fellowship consisting of a tuition waiver and yearly stipend of $20,000.  

Research/Teaching balance

In addition to research, all Ph.D. students participate in a College Teaching course in which they develop pedagogical and curricular skills.

Research Engagements

Students have the opportunity to attend research seminars and academic conferences relating to their area of study.

One-On-One Mentorship

Each student is paired with a Ph.D. mentor to prepare them for a career in academia or industry, through ongoing research and development of teaching skills.

highly Interactive

Students share offices in their academic department in order to benefit from frequent interaction with faculty and other Ph.D. students within their discipline. 


Our Ph.D. program is full-time only, with an average completion time of five years. The program is comprised of coursework, comprehensive examinations and a dissertation.

Proficiencies MBA Equivalent Courses
College Core 3 Courses
Concentration Coursework 5 Courses
Departmentally Selected Courses Up to 3 Courses
Supplemental or Minor Courses 4 Courses
Comprehensive Exam Taken after completing all coursework
Dissertation Begins after successful completion of comprehensive exam

An iPad is used at a workstation, displaying the Kent State University website.Applicants must show outstanding potential for doctoral study and professional achievement. Admission to the Ph.D. program is highly competitive and, normally, only two to three applicants are admitted within an academic area each year. Proficiency courses may be required if an admitted applicant does not have an MBA. 


  • Online Application and Fee
  • Official Transcripts
  • Official GMAT Score or GRE (Only GMAT is accepted for Accounting)
  • Three Letters of Recommendation
  • Essay of Goals and Objectives
  • International Applicants: Test of English proficiency - IELTS (minimum 7.0) or TOEFL IBT (minimum 100)


The application deadline is February 1st. All admission documents must be received by the application deadline.


Admitted applicants are awarded a Teaching and Research fellowship that consists of a tuition waiver and yearly stipend of $20,000. The fellowship is renewable up to five years.


Average GMAT Score 656
Average Graduate GPA 3.79
Average Age 32










Our Ph.D. graduates have been placed in universities across the country, including:

  • California State University
    Central Michigan University
    Duquesne University
    Eastern Michigan University
    Florida Institute of Technology
    Gannon University
    Idaho State University
  • Indiana State University
    Ithaca College
    Loyola University
    Minnesota State University
    Montana State University
    San Francisco State University
    SUNY Brockport
  • Towson University
    University of Hartford
    University of Massachusetts
    University of Tennessee
    University of Texas
    West Liberty University


The following are dissertations presented by Ph.D. students in the past five years.


Logan Browning, August 2017, An Examination of the Association of Firm Credit Ratings with Real Activities Manipulation, Audit Quality, Corporate Governance, and Credit Default Swaps

Jing Wang, December 2016, Acquiring Firms’ Strategic Disclosure Practices around Mergers and Acquisitions


Barry Hettler, May 2015, Disclosure Practices of Dual Class Firms: An Examination of Voluntary and Mandatory Reporting

Matthew Geiszler, August 2014, Does Accounting Quality Affect the Informational Value of Credit Ratings?

David Salerno, May 2013, The Effect of Earnings Quality on Analyst Forecast Accuracy, Dispersion, and Optimism and Implications for CEO Compensation

Nathan Jeppson, May 2013, Innovation Focused Strategy and Earning Management

Gulraze Wakil, May 2011, Conservatism, Earnings Persistence, and the Accruals Anomaly



Zilong Liu, August 2016, Two Essays on Entrepreneurial Finance

Tzveta Vateva, December 2014, Corporate Governance and Default Risk

Nonna Sorokina, August 2014, Bank Capital and Theory of Capital Structure

Natalya Schenck, August 2014, Impact of Charter Values on Moral Hazard in Banking

Thomas Hanson, August 2014, Real Effects of High Frequency Trading

Robert Antenucci, December 2013, Impact of Corporate Governance, CEO Compensation, and CEO Portfolio Risk on Firm Performance during Recessionary Periods

Pavlo Tsebro, August 2013, Two Essays in Finance: Essay I - Employee Stock Options: Financing Constraints Explanation, Essay II-Role of the Equity-Based Compensation in Valuation of (Non-) Diversified Firms

Fanglin Shen, May 2013, Responses in Divergence of Opinions Around Earning Announcement: Evidence Outside the U.S.

Colleen Asaad (Tokar), May 2013, Two Essays in Finance: Cultural Finance and Behavioral Finance

Lisa Williams, August 2012, Essays on Risk Management Strategies for U.S. Bank Holding Companies

Richard Hauser, August 2012, The Firm "Life-Cycle" Hypothesis and Dividend Policy: Tests on Propensity to Pay, Dividend Initiation, and Dividend Growth Rates

Sara Bennett, August 2012, The Order Book, Order Flow, and the Impact of Order Cancellations On Equity Index Futures

Shengxiong Wu, May 2012, The Information Content of the Euro-Bund Futures Option Markets

Randall Kimmel, August 2011, Can Statistics Based Early Warning Systems Detect Problem Banks Before Markets?


Information Systems

Geoffrey Hill, August 2015, Sensemaking in Big Data: Conceptual and Empirical Approaches to Actionable Knowledge Generation from Unstructured Text Streams

Karoly Bozan, December 2014, Process Framework of a Multi-Stakeholder EHR System

Fengkun Liu, December 2014, Informational Cascades in Mobil Application Adoption: A Study of the Effects of Review, Social, and Adopter Characteristics

Venugopal Gopalakrishna Remani, August 2012, Information Supply Chain System for Managing Rare Infectious Diseases in the U.S.

Yaman Roumani, May 2012, Predicting Vulnerability Risks Using Software Characteristics

Joseph Nwankpa, May 2012, The Implications of Real Options on ERP-Enabled Adoption

Laura Rickett, August 2011, An Analysis of the Effect of Information Activism on Capital Markets:  Investor Behavior and Divergent Market Conditions


Management Systems

Zhi Tao, May 2013, Carbon Emission Modeling in Green Supply Chain Management

Marina Astakhova, May 2012, Exploring Complementary Person-Organization Fit



Jamie Grigsby, August 2017, What’s the Story? Understanding the Experiences and Consequences of Consuming Stories

Kostas Alexiou, August 2017, Organizational Legitimacy in Entrepreneurial Contexts: Hybridity, Crowdfunding, and Social Entrepreneurship

Paul Mills, August 2017, Essays on Two Novel Pricing Mechanisms

Hua Meng, August 2016, The Effects of Scent on Consumer Behavior

Hillary Mellema, August 2015, The Effect of Indecisiveness on Consumer Choice Processes

Andrey Kretinin, August 2015, Essays on Governance Perspective on Franchising

Chan Ho Song, May 2015, An Experimental Test of the Performance of Referral Reward Programs: The Receiver's Perspective

Todd Morgan, May 2015, Antecedents, Consequences, and Boundary Conditions of Customer Participation in the New Product Development Process

Rebecca Dingus, May 2014, Management of a Multinational Salesforce:  A Transaction Cost Examination of the Sales Network

Kun Chen, May 2014, Strategic Objectives, Alignments, and Firm Performance

Marie Yeh, August 2013, Cards, Creatures, and Almost Anything: A Study of Children's Trading

Alison Shields, May 2013, What Did You Do To My Brand? Consumer Responses to Changes in Brands Towards Which They Are Nostalgic

Karla Mendoza Abarca, May 2013, Essays on Social Venture Antecedents, Consequences, and Strategies

Hyunjung Lee, August 2012, Brand Valuation Model: Shareholder Value Approach

Christina Saenger, May 2012, Attachment Style, Identity Congruence, and Gift Preference: A Dyadic Model of Gift Exchange

Kendra Fowler, August 2011, An Expansion of Retail Site Selection Theory: Incorporating Managerial Intuition and Process Quality

Mary Schramm, May 2011, Value Relevance of Innovation in the Pharmaceutical Industry

Veronica Thomas, May 2011, Secret Consumption: Responses to Social Group Influence Under Conditions of Conflicting Brand Preferences


Operations Management

Yertai Tanai, December 2016, Capturing Value from Decentralized Supply Chain with Third Party Reverse Logistics

Maxim Bushuev, December 2013, Supply Chain Delivery Performance:  Points of View of a Supplier and a Buyer

James Brown, May 2013, Green Supply Chain and Transportation Models

Kuntal Bhattacharyya, August 2011, Value Sourcing in Supply Chains

Lihua Chen, August 2011, Some Results in Fair Sharing of Costs and Revenue in Supply Chains with Varying Demand


Strategic Management

David Lee Baker, May 2012, Toward a Theoretical Model of the Principal Determinants of Country-Level Entrepreneurship


Supply Chain Management

Hongyan Liang, December 2017, Three Essays on Performance Evaluation in Operations and Supply Chain Management

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When does the Ph.D. Program Start?

It starts fall semester only.

What Ph.D. Concentrations are offered?

The following concentrations are offered:

  • Accounting
  • Finance
  • Information Systems
  • Management
  • Marketing
  • Supply Chain Management

How long does it take to get a Ph.D.?

The time to completion will vary by student, but the average time nationwide to complete a Ph.D. in Business Administration is five years (full-time).


How many new students are admitted each year?

We admit approximately three students per department. On average, we enroll 12 new students per year.

If I am an international student, am I required to take a test of the English language?

Yes, international applicants must either take the TOEFL, IELTS or Pearson TSE.

What are the minimum English test scores accepted?

The minimum English test scores accepted are as follows:

  • TOEFL IBT: 100
  • IELTS: 7

Can the English Language Test Requirement be Waived?

The general university rule is that an applicant must have had two full years of United States education in order to be considered for a waiver of the English Language test requirement. If you meet the criteria or for more clarification, contact the Office of Global Education and discuss your specific situation. 

When are classes scheduled?

Monday through Friday, throughout each of these days.

What is the minimum GMAT score that is accepted?

The minimum GMAT score considered is 600. However, due to the highly competitive nature of the program, high test scores do not guarantee admission. Our average GMAT score is 680.

Do I need a master's degree in order to be considered?

Due to the highly competitive nature of our program, an applicant should have a master's degree in order to be considered for the program. However, the degree is not required to be in a business discipline. 

Aside from the GMAT, what other factors are considered in admission?

Other factors include courses taken and grade point average (transcripts), essay of goals and objectives, work experience (resume/CV) and letters of recommendation. A test of English is also required for international applicants.

Can I be reviewed for admission if I haven't taken the GMAT?

Unfortunately, no. All application materials, including the GMAT, must be reviewed before a file can be reviewed for admission. 

Do you have conditional admission?

Due to the highly competitive nature of our program, we do not offer conditional admission. 

If admitted, how can I apply for a teaching and research fellowship?

Due to the importance of a student being immersed in the academic environment, if a student is admitted into our Ph.D. program the student is normally offered a teaching and research fellowship. A student does not have to apply on a separate fellowship application. 

What does the teaching and research fellowship include?

The fellowship includes a waiver for courses needed in the Ph.D. program, along with a $20,000 stipend for the academic year, plus an additional $3,000 stipend for summer, in exchange for teaching and researching in the College of Business Administration. 

When is the application deadline?

The application deadline is February 1st

Do all of the admission documents need to be in by the deadline?

Yes, all admission materials must be submitted by the deadline in order for an admission file to be reviewed.

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