After completing a master’s degree in business administration, some students choose to move forward with a doctorate degree. A business administration doctorate is an ideal degree to consider for those who entertain the idea of teaching, desire to work in research, or want to enter into upper-level management. Business administration involves the study of the human, material, and financial resources needed to accomplish organizational goals in business settings. During their undergraduate and graduate business administration studies, students are given a thorough education in the theories and principles of business, finance, economics, statistics, human resources, and decision-making skills. During their doctorate program, however, students focus more on applied, independent research. Unlike a traditional Ph.D. program, a DBA is aimed at applying theory to business problems.

Why a Ph.D. Degree?

Students often decide to obtain a business administration doctorate to build a successful career in academia. For those who want to teach college classes or do research in university settings, a Ph.D. in business administration is a worthwhile investment. With a DBA, students can also move on to become business consultants and CEOs. According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS), most top executives have at least a master’s degree in business administration or in an area related to their field. The BLS also reports that most post-secondary teachers have at least a Ph.D.

Getting Into a Ph.D. Degree Program

Students applying for admission into a master’s degree program must have fulfilled a set of prerequisites to determine their fit for the program. Schools may differ slightly, but typically require:

  • Master’s degree in related subject
  • Desired graduate GPA
  • Relevant work experience
  • Professional, personal letters of recommendation

Inside a Ph.D. Degree Program in Business Administration

Completing a doctorate of business administration takes around five years. During their DBA program, students will also complete a dissertation. Generally, a dissertation must be approved by a body of professors and advisors before a student is allowed to pursue it any further. Most business administration doctorate degree programs include in-depth classes in management, economic theory, organization theory, corporate governance, business ethics, and more.

Students pursuing an online DBA degree may have greater flexibility in their degree plan, as online classes are usually self-paced. However, the content is akin to traditional students, with the same dissertation process and course load. Despite the fact they are enrolled in distance learning, online students completing their dissertation are provided with the same support system as traditional Ph.D. students. Therefore, they are often required to travel to campus throughout the year to meet with academic advisors and university faculty and discuss their dissertation progress.

What’s Next for Business Administration Ph.D. Degree Holders?

For those DBA graduates who desire to work in academia, there are opportunities to enter into a number of research positions. Graduates may be able to compile research of use to future students and academic professionals. As mentioned earlier, Ph.D. graduates can also work in business consulting and CEO positions.

Doctoral students are also suited to work as postsecondary educators in their field. According to the BLS, postsecondary teachers are expected to see their jobs grow by 17% over the next few years, while top executives are expected to only see a 5% growth. Likewise, postsecondary teachers are postulated to make a median salary of around $62,000 a year.