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Ph.D. in Organizational Behavior

Graduate Program - Business Students
Full-time Program


Core Courses

A graduate course in economics

BE 701: Business Economics OR BE 917: Advanced Managerial Economics OR ECON 700: Survey of Microeconomics

BE 917: Business Economics, is preferred. Students coming into the program directly from an undergraduate degree may consider substituting BE 701: Business Economics, or ECON 700: Survey of Microeconomics. In the event a student has taken a graduate economics course prior to enrolling as a KU doctoral student, she/he may waive the requirement and substitute either an elective doctoral content course or a statistics/research methods course for this requirement.

MGMT 905: Philosophy of the Behavioral and Organizational Sciences

MGMT 906: Behavioral Research Methods

MGMT 916: Seminar in Organization Theory

1 of 2

Management Area HRM Content Course(s)

1 of 2

Management Area OB Content Course(s)

1 of 2

Management Area Strategy Content Course(s)

Concentration Courses

Second Management Area Course from Student’s Area of Specialization

Elective Content or Statistics/Methods Course

Elective Content or Statistics/Methods Course

Additional Information

Elective content or statistics/research methods courses can be from the Management Area of from elsewhere at KU, and can be MGMT 998: Independent Study in Management.

Supporting Courses

PSYC 790: Statistical Methods in Psychology I

PSYC 791: Statistical Methods in Psychology II

PSYC 893: Multivariate Analysis

PSYC 894: Multilevel Modeling

PSYC 896: Structural Equation Modeling I

Additional Information

For the statistics/reasearch methods course requirements, students my substitute an equivalent statistics or methods course as an elective with faculty advisor approval.


Area of Concentration

Most students typically will select the specific area to which they are admitted (organizational behavior) 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 that is a combination of the traditional business disciplines of accounting, finance, human resource management, marketing, decision sciences, and strategic management. An aspirant may also propose an interdisciplinary area of concentration that includes emphases such as international business, law, and economics. 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). The typical supporting areas for decision science students are marketing, economics, finance, etc. 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. A sound research is always grounded on sound methodology. A doctoral student in organizational behavior has the opportunity to develop methodological skill in probability and statistics, optimization, uncertain reasoning, game theory, and econometrics. A typical doctoral dissertation often utilizes one or more of the following research methodology: empirical, analytical, behavioral, and computational.


Year 1

Coursework and research

Year 2

Coursework and research

Year 3

Comprehensive exams

Year 4

Dissertation proposal

Year 5

Dissertation defense

Some students can complete the program in four years.

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