The Doctor of Business Administration degree is designed to prepare graduates for careers as effective university researchers and teachers or for senior research positions in business or government. The program is designed for students wishing to pursue full-time business doctoral studies in a residential program.
Objectives and Outcomes
- Research: A primary objective of the program is to train DBA candidates to become proficient researchers. Therefore, coursework involves research activities such as literature review and critique, theoretical modeling, research design, computer-assisted empirical analysis, and preparation of proposals and research papers.
- Teaching: Another objective is to train students to become proficient teachers. Most DBA candidates are provided the opportunity to teach undergraduate courses in their specialty area. DBA candidates typically are not assigned teaching responsibilities until late in their second year or in their third year in the program. Prior to being put in the classroom, doctoral candidates receive training and mentoring in the art and practice of teaching.
- Professional Activities: In addition, all business doctoral students are expected to participate in national and regional academic conferences.
Incoming students work with the Associate Dean of Graduate Programs and Research and their departmental doctoral faculty advisor to develop an individualized formal plan of study. Each plan of study must include the following:
- 24 hours of business core course work to acquaint the student with the functional areas of business. These courses can be waived if the student has satisfactorily completed equivalent graduate level course work at an AACSB-accredited school of business.
- An in-depth major concentration (minimum of 18 hours) in Accounting, Computer Information Systems, Finance, Marketing, Management or Quantitative Analysis
- Two minor areas of at least 9 hours each, one of which must be Quantitative Analysis (statistics). These supporting areas offer the student considerable latitude in identifying a course of study that can be tailored to the individual’s interests and goals.
- 9 hours of BUSN 610 which is taught only in the Fall quarter. This course offers students an orientation to doctoral studies. Each Fall section focuses on a separate topic: general orientation (first year), orientation to teaching (second year), research and presentation skills (third year)
- Dissertation (minimum 15 hours of BUSN 651)
The program of study requirements listed above are independent of each other; courses taken to satisfy one requirement may not be used to satisfy any other requirement. Previous graduate work taken prior to admission to the Louisiana Tech DBA program may be used to satisfy these requirements if it is deemed appropriate by the student’s program committee and the Associate Dean of Graduate Studies. In compliance with University regulations, the DBA degree requires the completion of 60 hours of graduate work beyond the baccalaureate degree. Within the credit hour requirement is the residency requirement. To satisfy the residency requirement, a student must complete at least three consecutive quarters and a minimum of 24 semester credit hours, exclusive of research and dissertation credit, beyond the master’s degree or its equivalent, on the Louisiana Tech campus. The student’s advisory committee typically specifies additional coursework well beyond the 24 hour minimum residency requirement.
Examinations and Dissertation
A written comprehensive examination covering the major area and a statistical tools qualifying exam are administered after the candidate has completed the relevant coursework in his/her official plan of study. Additional examinations and other requirements (such as a second year summer paper or a minor comprehensive exam) may be required by the major. These requirements will be specified in the student’s formal plan of study. All examinations are to be taken on the main campus under the direct supervision of appropriate faculty members.
Candidacy and Time Limitation
After the student has successfully passed all examinations and requirements in their plan of study, the student will be admitted to candidacy. After the students’ first year of coursework, the student (except Finance DBAs) must pass a statistical tools qualifier exam. Students will be notified within four academic weeks the outcome of the exam. If a student fails the qualifier exam, he/she will have one additional opportunity to pass the qualifier about 2-3 months later. Doctoral faculty from each discipline will develop that disciplines statistical tools qualifying exam. After the second year, the student not planning to take a minor comprehensive exam is required to write and present a second year research paper as evidence of his/her applied knowledge in research. The student must complete his/her dissertation and pass the final oral examination (dissertation defense) within a maximum of three calendar years after being admitted to candidacy, with up to two one-year extensions (not guaranteed). Students must request an extension of the three-year time limit in writing. Such a request must include a discussion of the reasons for the extension, a description of the work completed to date, and a projected timetable for completion of the dissertation.
Admission to the DBA Program
To qualify for admission to the DBA program, applicants must meet the graduate admissions requirements of the Graduate School and the doctoral admissions requirements of the College. If these requirements have been or can be met, the application will be reviewed by a doctoral admissions committee to determine personal characteristics, research interests and capability, motivation and perseverance, and promise of success in high level advanced study.
The applicant’s academic record and score on the Graduate Management Admissions Test (GMAT) or the equivalent GRE must demonstrate sufficient promise to indicate that s/he is qualified to perform successfully in the DBA program. More emphasis will be placed on an applicants’ graduate record than on his/her undergraduate record if he/she have already earned his/her master’s degree.
- Contact the college to determine if your area of interest is accepting students in this particular year. Some programs accept students biannually.
- Take the Graduate Management Admission Test. Arrangements can be made by calling (800) GMAT - NOW. Request that your test score be sent to the Associate Dean of Graduate Programs and Research, College of Business (code 6372), Louisiana Tech University, Ruston, LA 71272.
- Complete a Graduate School application for admission form and pay application fee. Applications can be obtained from the Graduate School, Louisiana Tech University, P.O. Box 7923, Ruston, LA 71272, or downloaded from our website business.latech.edu/graduate. Return the completed application to the Graduate School.
- Request official transcripts from all colleges and universities attended at any time in the past be sent to the Graduate School.
- Send three letters of reference from persons who know your qualifications for doctoral study to the Associate Dean of Graduate Programs and Research, College of Business, Louisiana Tech University, Ruston, LA 71272. These letters should be submitted before or by the time the application is made. Also, you should send a current resume to the same address.
- After the above 4 steps have been completed, you may be invited to participate in an interview with selected doctoral faculty. The admission decision will be made by the DBA Admissions Committee after this interview. All of an applicant’s credentials will be used in making this decision.