Feb 24, 2024  
2023-2024 University Catalog 
2023-2024 University Catalog

Financial Economics, Ph.D.

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The Department of Economics and Finance offers a Doctor of Philosophy degree in Financial Economics with specializations in International Financial Economics, Investments, Corporate Finance, Monetary Theory and Financial Institutions, and an interdisciplinary field. The curriculum is structured to promote competence both in theory and applications, in finance and economics.

Student Learning Outcomes

Student Learning Outcomes (SLOs) for PhD Financial Economics

Learning Goals (AACSB)

Core Financial Economic Knowledge - Students will demonstrate knowledge in the four core areas in Financial Economics: Microeconomics, Macroeconomics, Corporate Finance and Investments. 

Advanced Finance Knowledge - Students will demonstrate knowledge in four advanced areas in Financial Economics: Corporate Finance, Investments, International Finance and Financial Institutions. 

Making Scholarly, Intellectual Contributions - Students will be able to conduct original research and present and publish their intellectual contributions. 

Admission Requirements

All students enrolling in the program must have a bachelor’s degree from an accredited college or university and, at a minimum, their undergraduate training should include principles of economics, intermediate microeconomic and macroeconomic theory, financial management, one year of statistics, and one semester of calculus. Admission decisions will be based primarily on undergraduate grade point average (GPA), Graduate Record Examination (GRE) or Graduate Management Admissions Test (GMAT) scores, and letters of recommendation. Preferred levels of performance will be a 3.0 GPA and 350 (combined scores for verbal and quantitative sections) GRE or 550 GMAT score. These levels will be viewed as general guidelines since particular strength in one set of credentials may be viewed as sufficient to offset a modest deficiency elsewhere.

Degree Requirements

The doctoral program in financial economics is divided into three stages: core preparation, advanced specialization, and dissertation. All graduate students must have approval of the graduate coordinator for the courses that they take.

Students may be allowed to start taking graduate courses before completing certain foundation courses. The intermediate economics courses may be taken concurrently with the graduate theory courses. Principles of Financial Management (Finance 3300), calculus, and statistics are prerequisites to all graduate courses in the program.

Prospective candidates for the Ph.D. degree in financial economics should be advised that mathematical modeling is used heavily in the field. Indeed, it is virtually impossible to read any current major journal (much less contribute one’s own research to them) without considerable training in modeling methods. Those entering doctoral study without command of calculus will be judged deficient. More than one semester in calculus is recommended.

The successful completion of the Ph.D. program is carried out in three stages: core courses that culminate in a qualifying exam, two specialized fields with a corresponding general exam, and a dissertation and its’ oral defense. The Ph.D. candidate must demonstrate proficiency in mathematics or computer programming in a manner approved by the Graduate Coordinator. All students must complete a minimum of 60 credit hours in the program to graduate.

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