The doctoral program in finance at the Eller College of Management prepares its graduates primarily for careers as university professors, with research agendas in corporate finance, investments and financial institutions. The faculty members, with degrees from internationally recognized universities, conduct research in these areas.
A set of economics and finance courses is required of all students, regardless of which areas of concentration they choose. This is supplemented with special courses and electives.
In addition, students are required to become competent in economics and econometrics and pass the requirements for a minor in economics.
Students have opportunities to work with faculty through small classes and ongoing research projects to develop the methodological and analytical tools needed for research and teaching. Meet our current students on our website.
The UA Finance Department seeks to admit highly qualified, motivated and quantitatively-skilled students interested in pursuing independent research projects.
The Eller College of Management at The University of Arizona is internationally recognized for pioneering research, innovative curriculum, distinguished faculty, and excellence in entrepreneurship. The College is AACSB accredited and leads the nation’s business schools in generating grant funds for research and supports more than 4,500 undergraduate and 600 graduate students on the UA campus in beautiful Tucson, Arizona.
The University of Arizona is located in the heart of Tucson, Arizona, a metropolitan area of more than one million people. Surrounded by mountains and the exotic Sonoran desert, this area enjoys 350 days of sunshine per year. The UA is a member of the prestigious Association of American Universities (AAU), a group of 62 leading U.S. universities distinguished by the breadth and quality of their programs in research and graduate education. The UA has 20 colleges and over 160 degrees from top-ranked programs in physical and life sciences, business and management, and social sciences.
Application package requirements are detailed on the department website at https://finance.eller.arizona.edu/academic-programs/doctoral-program/admissions/application-package-requirements.
Full instructions and requirements are included in the online application.
In addition to completing this online application, you are required to send Official Transcripts from all institutions directly to the Finance Department at:
Currently, if receiving full funding, Finance Ph.D. students receive waivers of non-resident tuition, funding to cover resident registration (except miscellaneous University fees of about $550 per semester) and a stipend of $21,175 for acting as a graduate teaching assistant (GTA) under the direction of a faculty member. As a GTA, individual health insurance coverage is provided by the University by application.
Ph.D. students receiving funding are assigned to work with a faculty member during the year. About two-thirds assist with research and the other third assist with teaching and research.
After the second year of coursework, most students supplement the assistantship stipend by teaching one course in a summer session. This gives students invaluable experience in teaching prior to the job search and additional salary (just over $2,500 per class for a summer semester course).
The financial aid office website is available at https://financialaid.arizona.edu/.
All Applicants - Fall semester only: January 15
The PhD in Finance degree program requires a minimum of 12-hours of approved 500-level economics minor coursework, 36-hours of approved 500- and 600-level finance coursework, and 18 hours of finance dissertation units. Students must maintain an overall GPA of at least a 3.0 and at least a B in all economics minor coursework.
The first year of study is primarily in economics, the second year of study is in economics and finance, and two courses in the third year of study may be in approved elective subjects (general accounting, economics, finance, math, statistics, computer science or MIS).
The program starts in late July, prior to the start of the formal school year, with boot camps in SAS (taught by the Accounting Department) and Mathematics for Economists (ECON 519). At the end of the first year of study, students will take the economics written qualifying exam for the economics or econometrics minor.
During the second year, students are required to develop a research proposal, present the idea to faculty and develop a paper and final presentation of the research. At the end of the second year of study, students will take the finance written comprehensive exam.
During the third year of study, students will complete coursework and develop a dissertation research proposal. The proposal will be presented to the dissertation committee, along with the oral examination of finance and economics. During the rest of the program, students will complete their dissertation research and begin additional research with the aim of publication.
See our website for full details: https://finance.eller.arizona.edu/academic-programs/doctoral-program/curriculum.
Each student is required to meet the requirements of a minor in Economics, which includes the required first year coursework in economics (Econ501A, Econ501B, Econ501C, Econ 520, Econ522A) and passing the first year written qualifying examination administered by the Economics Department faculty.
The Qualifying Examination is taken by Ph.D. students at the end of the first year in the program, typically in early June. It is a written examination in either theory or quantitative methods and is based on the material taught in the Economics courses taken during the first year of the program. The theory examination covers the material in the microeconomic core courses (ECON 501A, 501B and 501C). The quantitative examination covers the material in the statistics and econometrics courses (ECON 520 and 522A).
The goal of the exam is to ensure that students have developed an appreciation for how all of the material fits together in a broader framework of economic reasoning. In addition, the exam will help students solidify their knowledge about the core of economics. The qualifying examination is a requirement for continuation in the program.
If the student does not pass the exam at the end of the first year of the program, the department may elect to dismiss the student from the Ph.D. program, withdraw financial assistance awarded in prior semesters, or allow the student to retake the exam in August (around the start of Fall semester of the second year of study, per the Economics Department schedule) at which time the first year qualifying examination must be completed with a passing grade.