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Business PhD FAQs

Program Overview

Completion takes an average of five years

No. Due to the intensive academic and research commitment, the Wisconsin School of Business PhD must be pursued full time while in residence on the campus.

No. The admissions process is a holistic and complex process; we cannot make any preliminary assessment on your competitiveness as an applicant.

The number of admitted students will vary by area of study. The average is one to three students per area per year.

The emphasis of the Wisconsin PhD in business is on academic research and preparation for tenure-track positions at the top research universities. Although some graduates will find options available to them in private industry, those whose primary interest is a career in business or industry may wish to consider alternative degree programs.

Admissions Overview

The minimum degree requirement is an undergraduate degree. Many applicants have a master’s degree, but it is not required. Most applicants to the Accounting program have a Master of Accountancy degree.

No, however, having a general research area in mind is highly encouraged. Your dissertation topic will be defined later in the program.

Yes. All applicants must complete the online application to be considered for admissions. If you are a current UW–Madison graduate student interested in applying to the Wisconsin PhD Program in Business, please contact PhD Program Office for specific advice on how to proceed.

No, we do not consider transfer students. If you apply and are admitted to our program, you will start your PhD over from the beginning.

Admission decisions are made on a rolling basis beginning in January. Most decisions are made in February or March, and you should expect a decision no later than mid-April.

Decisions are posted to the online application. You will receive an email notification when the decision is posted. Decisions are never communicated over the telephone. If you are admitted, the offer of a financial aid package will be communicated with the admission decision.

Standardized Test

Yes, we require GMAT Focus, GMAT, or GRE scores for all applicants. Scores must be less than five years old from the date classes begin.

Make sure your scores are reported to us as soon as they are available. It is fine as long as we receive them by mid-January.

No; however, applicants scoring lower than the 90th percentile will typically be less competitive applicants.

No, we must have all the required materials before we will review your application materials and make a decision regarding admission.

Application Overview

See your online application account, where you submitted your online application. Please be aware that there may be some delay between receipt of the materials and application status updates.

No, once you have submitted your materials we are not able to switch documents.

Financial Aid and Benefits Questions

Yes. As a doctoral student at the Wisconsin School of Business, you will receive comprehensive health insurance for yourself and immediate family members who live with you. Students tell us that ours is a highly competitive health insurance plan.

All applicants are automatically considered for funding packages. See Financing Your PhD for additional details.