Admission Standards and Procedures for the Ph.D. in Business Administration and the Ph.D. in Economics

Introduction

In May 1985, the RCB faculty approved doctoral admissions standards and procedures that were directed toward achieving “a highly-rated, nationally recognized Ph.D. program.” This document replaces the 1985 document. It contains some changes in the procedures associated with doctoral admissions based on experience since 1985. Other than for the addition of the Test of Spoken English requirement for foreign students and providing for the same minimum levels for all students on each of the admissions criteria, the admission standards are the same as those adopted in 1985.

Doctoral Admissions Procedures

Submission of Annual Plan

Admission decisions by academic units are made in reference to a recruiting/admissions plan that is submitted annually for the review and approval of the Director of Doctoral Programs. Among other things, this plan addresses the number of doctoral students in the major area relative to the number of faculty, the faculty dissertation committee workload, and the stage of degree completion of those students already in the program. These plans are reviewed by the Director of Doctoral Programs with respect to the total size of the College’s doctoral programs relative to budgetary resources and the capacity of the faulty to provide adequate mentoring and research and dissertation supervision.

Timing of Admission Decisions

Admission decisions should be made by a group (i.e., an informal committee) of faculty of the academic unit headed by the doctoral coordinator. Other than for truly exceptional applicants, the academic unit should make all admission decisions at the same time. This provides more assurance that the most qualified applicants are being accepted and being sent forth to the Doctoral Assistantship Committee for a subsequent assistantship decision. With the exception of the Department of Economics which has a later application deadline, all admission and assistantship decisions should be completed by the end of March. This permits acceptances of admission and assistantship to be in the hands of all applicants before April l5, which is the earliest date that acceptance can be required for Fall Quarter admission per a resolution passed by AACSB and the trustees of GMAC.

Applicants Who Meet Threshold Standards

The files of all applicants who meet the threshold standards (defined below) will be sent to the individual academic unit for consideration. Each academic unit, subject to the approval of the Director of Doctoral Programs, will determine which of these applicants will be accepted and which will be rejected.

Applicants Who Do Not Meet Threshold Standards

The files of all applicants who do not meet threshold standards (defined below) will be sent to the individual academic unit for consideration. Those applicants which the academic unit wishes to accept will be forwarded to the Doctoral Admissions Committee (defined below) who will consider and make the final decision on those applicants, subject to the approval of the Director of Doctoral Programs.

Doctoral Admissions Committee

The Doctoral Admissions Committee is comprised of the Director of Doctoral Programs and three doctoral coordinators. The doctoral coordinators serve three-year terms with one doctoral coordinator rotating off the committee each year. The Doctoral Programs Administrator is an ex-officio, non-voting member.

The files of applicants that are acceptable to an academic unit but do not meet the threshold standards are sent to the Doctoral Admissions Committee for review, accompanied by justification from the academic unit. The Doctoral Admissions Committee makes the final admissions decision, subject to the approval of the Director of Doctoral Programs, based on all the evidence including the possible interview of the applicant.

Appeals are not permitted from academic units for students who do not meet threshold standards and are denied admission by the Doctoral Admissions Committee. However, appeals are permitted from academic units for students that meet threshold standards and that the academic unit wishes to admit but are not approved by the Director of Doctoral Programs.

Threshold Standards

The threshold standards involve a formula along with minimum levels on each component of the formula.

The formulas used are:

GPA4 x VERB x QUAN = PROD1

GPA2 x VERB x QUAN = PROD2

…where GPA4 is the undergraduate grade point average (GPA), GPA2 is the GPA for the last two years, VERB is the percentile on the verbal component of the Graduate Management Admissions Test (GMAT) or Graduate Record Examination (GRE), and QUAN is the percentile on the quantitative component of the GMAT or GRE. GPA2 is based on the grades in the last 90 quarter credit hours or 60 semester credit hours. If a student has taken graduate course work, this is included in the calculation of GPA2.

An applicant is defined as meeting the threshold standards if each of the following criteria are met:

  1. PROD113,098 or PROD2 14,154

    The values for PRODl and PROD2 are based on the 65th percentile for VERB and QUAN and 3.l for GPA4 and 3.35 for GPA2. In other words:

    PRODl = 65 x 65 x 3.10 = 13,098

    PROD2 = 65 x 65 x 3.35 = 14,154

  2. VERB and QUAN scores at the 50th percentile or greater.
  3. GPA4 of 2.75 or greater, or GPA2 of 3.00 or better.
  4. Applicants who are not U.S. citizens and whose primary or native language is not English must take the Test of Spoken English (TSE) and score 220 or greater. The TSE defines a 220 score as spoken English which is “generally comprehensible with some errors in pronunciation, grammar, choice of vocabulary items, or with pauses or occasional rephrasing.”
  5. Under University regulations, all applicants whose primary or native language is not English and who have not completed a degree at a U.S. institution must take the Test of English as a Foreign Language (TOEFL). TOEFL examines listening comprehension, structure and written expression and vocabulary and reading comprehension. The College requires a score of 600 (89th percentile) or greater on the TOEFL for doctoral applicants.

Other Criteria and Objectives

In making admissions decisions, all relevant information that would suggest the ability of the student to perform doctoral-level work should be taken into account. Beyond the reported GPAs and test scores, academic units and the Doctoral Admissions Committee should consider the quality of the schools attended, the program of study at other schools, letters of recommendation, outside activities, employment history, etc.

The Graduate Program Council recognizes the desirability of having a diverse student body. Therefore, the Council urges that the College seek and recruit students from throughout the United States. The Council also recognizes the desirability of having international students but believes that these students should be a minority in the College’s doctoral program and should come from a variety of countries. These goals should apply to all majors in the College and should be considered by each academic unit and the Doctoral Admissions Committee in making admission decisions among the pool of applicants.

Consistent with the goals and expectations for the doctoral programs as approved by the CBA faculty in May 1987, those being considered for admission to the program are expected to be full-time students, and it is expected that our foreign students begin the program with a level of oral english profiency adequate to interact with their fellow students in the classroom, effectively serve as GRA’s, and ultimately serve as GTA’s. The College cannot afford to admit students who enter the doctoral programs without adequate oral English profiency, hoping that the students will pick it up during their first year or two in the program.

Admission decisions should also be made on the basis of knowledge of the potential research interests of students relative to faculty research interests so that adequate mentor relationships between doctoral students and faculty are developed.

(Approved by RCB Faculty Meeting of January 25, 1989)