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accounting phD

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Joined: 24 Aug 2004
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accounting phD [#permalink] New post 24 Aug 2004, 12:32

Does anyone here know specifics about PhD programs in accounting/ plan to apply for PhD in accounting?

I am a Master's student at the London School of Economics , studying Acc & Finance. I have a Bachelors degree in Computer Engineering from India(GPa:3.6) and a Master's in mgmt and policy from a State school in New York (GPA:3.8).

I want to apply for PhD in acc in U.S b-schools for fall trying to do some research on entry requirements etc. I have a GMAT of 720 (taken 3 yrs back so my percentile keeps dropping!), a years work exp in software and a couple of good internships in Corp finance.

It seems like Acc PhD's are easier to get into compared to Fin PhD but nevertheless require equally strong econ & math background. I don't hav great math grades and I am currently trying to beef up my econ portfolio. But my first econ class at LSE :Advanced econometrics, resulted in a B+... wonder if I should take more of such tough courses and spoil my grades or just stick to acc & fin courses and get A's.

Also, I am trying to get an idea of which range of schools I can shoot for.

Any feedback will be appreciated.
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Joined: 17 Jul 2004
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 [#permalink] New post 24 Aug 2004, 13:41

Do you have some specific questions in mind?
What type of research are you considering?

In the meantime you might find this interesting . . .

Rochester (general PhD)

"The Program is selective. During year 2003-04 we considered 320 applications and admitted only 21. Admitted applicant GMAT scores average above 700. Of course, test scores are not the only criteria used in selection. Past academic performance, recommendations, and an applicant’s objectives also tell us a lot about the potential for success in our Program."


"Preparation and Qualifications

There are no formal education requirements other than possession of a bachelor's degree. Specifically, an MBA is not required. Several students have entered without an MBA and/or with little or no background in traditional accounting. Such background can be provided, if needed, by coursework available at the Graduate School of Business. The Program is small and permits tailoring to the background and interests of each student. Relative to other doctoral programs in accounting, the Stanford program is quantitatively oriented. Additional coursework can be provided to compensate for a lack of quantitative background in cases where the faculty believe an applicant's other qualifications are exceptional. Students with a very limited quantitative background typically take an extra year to complete additional coursework.

All students are required to have, or to obtain during their first year, mathematical skill at the level of one year of calculus; one course each in linear algebra, analysis, probability, and optimization; and two courses in statistics. Students are expected to have adequate computer programming skills using languages such as FORTRAN, Pascal, or APL, or to correct any deficiencies by the summer following the first academic year."

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 [#permalink] New post 25 Aug 2004, 02:26
Tks for the reply Hjort.

I haven't yet decided on my research topic. it will have to be either in financial /managerial accounting..the 2 main areas.

Before that these are some questions on my mind:

1. do adcoms consider relative weightage of grades. eg: getting a B+/A- in a tough course in my school, might be equivalent to getting an A in other relatively lower/ grade inflation schools.

2. A postive answer for the above issue will help my strategy of taking tough courses in my current semester to prove my perseverence in applying for a phD, although I may only manage a B+/A- in these.
Otherwise if they are just interested in seeing straight A's , I can just litter my transcripts with the generic courses. what's your opinion on this?

3. I am trying to get the subjectwise split in business PhD's. most schools seem to only disclose the overall number of apps /admits. This could be very misleading since tracks like Finance get 50% of total apps and the others far less. Do you know of any top schools that provide subjective admission statistics for business PhD's? (particularly accounting)

4. Given my credentials , stated in my posting above , where do you think I stand vis-a-vis the top 15 schools?

5. Some of the accounting Schools are soft programs (less quantitative i.e not much math background required to get in) eg:Harvard? while others are hard programs eg:Stanford

Infact one has better chance to get into Stanford's accounting PhD program with a math/economics background rather than with an accounting background. Whereas Schools such as Texas specifically ask for strong accounting background.

Can you give me the split of hard & soft programs among the top 20 accounting programs ?

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 [#permalink] New post 25 Aug 2004, 11:46
Hi again,

Due to time constraints, I will reply over the course of a few messages.

Schools will certainly consider the programs that granted your previous degrees. This could be important at the margin where a given standing at a highly selective institution would be viewed as superior to the same standing at a less selective school. However, I would not rely on this adjustment too much since many of your fellow applicants are probably coming from similar institutions.

Here are some department specific stats:


"Admissions Statistics 2002 Department Applicants Admitted
Accounting 92 2
Finance & Econ 339 7
Management 157 1
Decision, Risk & Operations 78 3
Marketing 103 2
Total 769 15

Admissions Statistics 2003 Department Applicants Admitted
Accounting 97 3
Finance & Econ 317 7
Management 168 5
Decision, Risk & Operations 119 5
Marketing 120 3
Total 822 23"


"We receive over 300 applications in Finance and enroll about 7 students per year. In each of the other disciplines we receive 50 to 150 applications and enroll 2 to 4 students per year. The business schools with the top doctoral programs regularly exchange admission statistics. Stern’s admission data are typical of the top five programs in the country"

Iowa Acctg

"We admit between two and four students each year. We consider your Grade Point Average (GPA), GMAT (Graduate Management Admissions Test) scores, undergraduate and masters' degree institutions' rigor, your statement of purpose, relevant work experience, and general seriousness of purpose in our admission decisions. (We also require TOEFL scores from international students.) Our typical student has a graduate degree in accounting (although that is not required) and is often professionally certified as well. Incoming students also average several years of work experience with top-tier public accounting firms and / or corporations. Average GMAT scores are in the high 600s, and the average GPA for a typical incoming class is above 3.50 on a 4.00 point scale. Students find it advantageous to have exposure to calculus and economics at the collegiate level."

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 [#permalink] New post 25 Aug 2004, 22:02
Hi again,

What are we using as a benchmark for the "Top x" schools? It is worth noting that the Accounting specific doctoral ranking differs from the MBA general rep ranking for some obvious reasons such as the absence of schools like Dartmouth and the far stronger performance of schools like Rochester.

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 [#permalink] New post 26 Aug 2004, 12:06
I use the attched paper as a guidance for doctoral program ranking in accounting. their technique seems reasonably believable.

Excerpt from paper:

Table 1
Ranking Ph.D. Programs based on SSRN Highly Downloaded Authors Unadjusted for Program Size
Panel A: Inception - 2001 Panel B: Pre-1982 Panel C: 1982-1991 Panel D: 1992-2001
School No. Top Rank No. Top Rank No. Top Rank No. Top Rank
Authors Authors Authors Authors
Chicago 16 1 6 1 6 1.5 4 6
Michigan 14 2.5 0 n/a 5 3.5 9 1
Rochester 14 2.5 2 6.5 4 5.5 8 2
UC Berkeley 13 4 3 3 6 1.5 4 6
Stanford 12 5 3 3 5 3.5 4 6
Iowa 11 6 2 6.5 4 5.5 5 3.5
Columbia 7 7.5 2 6.5 2 9.5 3 11
Univ. Washington 7 7.5 1 12.5 1 16.5 5 3.5
Pennsylvania 5 9.5 0 n/a 2 9.5 3 11
Texas-Austin 5 9.5 1 12.5 1 16.5 3 11
Carnegie Mellon 4 14 3 3 0 n/a 1 21.5
Cornell 4 14 1 12.5 2 9.5 1 21.5
Minnesota 4 14 0 n/a 1 16.5 3 11
MIT 4 14 0 n/a 2 9.5 2 16.5
Northwestern 4 14 0 n/a 1 16.5 3 11
Penn State 4 14 0 n/a 1 16.5 3 11
Purdue 4 14 2 6.5 0 n/a 2 16.5
British Columbia 3 20 0 n/a 0 n/a 3 11
Harvard 3 20 1 12.5 1 16.5 1 21.5
Illinois 3 20 1 12.5 1 16.5 1 21.5
Michigan State 3 20 1 12.5 0 n/a 2 16.5
Ohio State 3 20 1 12.5 1 16.5 1 21.5
Florida 2 24.5 0 n/a 2 9.5 0 n/a
Lancaster 2 24.5 1 12.5 0 n/a 1 21.5
Oxford 2 24.5 0 n/a 0 n/a 2 16.5
UCLA 2 24.5 0 n/a 2 9.5 0 n/a

File comment: ranking of accounting phD programs
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  [#permalink] 26 Aug 2004, 12:06
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