The program involves rigorous coursework not only within the MHR department, but also includes courses in other departments of Fisher College as well as statistics, economics, psychology and other disciplines within the university. The coursework helps to provide knowledge on essential theories of the field, advanced research methods and approaches to empirical research.

Students complete all required and elective courses during their first two years. The total required credit hours to complete the PhD program is 80, broken down as follows:

  • Required seminars within department: 21
  • Required statistics courses: 12
  • “Breadth” courses from outside Fisher: 12
  • Other elective courses: 20
  • Dissertation credits: 15

In addition to the above, other requirements of the program include:

First-year requirements:

  • Year-long assistantship which includes work on research.
  • Substantial progress on the second-year paper.

Second-year requirements:

  • Year-long assistantship which includes work on research.
  • Completion of the second-year paper.
  • Successful completion of the comprehensive exam.

Third-year requirements:

  • Substantial progress on the dissertation, including the formation of a dissertation committee.
  • Successful defense of the dissertation proposal.
  • Independent teaching of one course.
  • Paper(s) submitted to major conferences/journals.
  • Preparation for the job market by July, including a job market paper from the dissertation.

Fourth-year requirements:

  • Completion of the dissertation.
  • Paper(s) submitted to major conferences/journals.
  • Independent teaching of one course.
  • Successful completion of the oral dissertation defense.