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PhD in Management Science, Finance Concentration

ITS Phd in management science finance concentration group of students line up

The PhD in Management Science with a concentration in Finance degree is designed for students seeking training in the most advanced issues, both theoretical and applied, in the field of managerial finance and analysis.

Admission Procedures

Applicants should have at least a bachelor’s degree. Admission is based on grade point average, graduate examination test score (GMAT* or GRE), letters of reference (at least three, with two from academic references), business and professional experience (if applicable), a written statement of personal objectives and compatibility with faculty research activities. Since the school of Management starts making first-round admission decisions on December 16, it is best to complete the entire application process no later than December 15. While applications will be accepted after that date, applying after December 15 may significantly lower your chance of acceptance.

* UT Dallas Naveen Jindal School of Management prefers the GMAT admission test, however, we gladly accept the GRE test as well.

Apply for PhD Program

Our PhD program is designed to produce well-trained researchers. Students take classes that equip them with the latest research tools and expose them to cutting edge research. They have access to a large pool of accomplished faculty who are actively engaged in research on corporate finance, asset pricing and financial intermediation.

Vikram Nanda, PhD PhD Area Coordinator, Finance

Students must complete at least 75 semester credit hours of approved graduate work before a degree may be conferred. Credit may be granted for courses taken elsewhere.

Master’s-Level Courses (12 semester credit hours)

Students entering the program without an MBA or equivalent must complete a minimum of four courses typically required of MBA students to provide them knowledge required of professional managers. In certain instances, a higher-level course approved by the PhD Finance advisor may be substituted for an MBA-level course. However, if a student enters the program with a prior business degree, the PhD advisor may require him to take additional courses in mathematical sciences to address any deficiencies in this area.

Advanced Master’s-Level Courses (6 semester credit hours)

  • FIN 6370 Theory of Finance and its Applications
  • FIN 6381 Introductory Mathematical Finance.

Research Methods Core

The Management Science PhD core curriculum consists of a minimum of 9 courses.

Please visit the Management Science Degree Plan page for core and secondary core course requirements.

Doctoral Seminars (12 semester credit hours)

  • Finance Theory Core (FIN 7330 Asset Pricing Theory and FIN 7340 Theory of Corporate Finance)
  • Finance Empirical Core (FIN 7310 Seminar in Contemporary Finance, FIN 7335 Empirical Asset Pricing and FIN 7345 Empirical Corporate Finance)

Additional Coursework (21 semester credit hours)

  • Electives may be from accounting, computer science, economics, finance, mathematics, statistics or other fields. Specific courses must be approved by the Finance PhD advisor.

Research Papers

Students in the program are expected to write research papers each year. Typically, they devote each summer entirely to research. Each fall, they present their research to faculty and their fellow students. Students are encouraged to both collaborate with faculty on research projects as well as develop research independently of faculty.

Written Preliminary and Qualifying Examinations

PhD in Finance students take a written preliminary exam at the end of their first year in the program over a set of core courses (ECON 6309 Econometrics I, MECO 6345 Advanced Managerial Economics). At the end of their fourth semester in the program, students take a written qualifying exam over research core and finance theory core courses, which they must pass before admission for candidacy for the doctorate degree.


The dissertation is written under the supervision of the dissertation committee. The student must identify a committee and a chairperson within one semester following successful completion of the written qualifying examination. Students must present and pass their dissertation proposal before they can proceed to their final oral defense. Twelve to 24 semester hours may be granted for the dissertation toward the minimum 75-hour requirement for the degree.

The PhD program in Finance at Naveen Jindal School of Management, UT Dallas, has a strong record of placing PhD graduates at top universities and corporations.

Selected Student Placements
Year NamePlacementLocation
2020Munhee HanHong Kong Polytechnic UniversityHong Kong
2020Hui Grace WangBentley UniversityWaltham, MA
2019Andy RuppChiang Mai UniversityChiang Mai, Thailand
2018Kevin GreenDimensional FundsAustin, TX
2018Amir ZemoodehCitigroupIrving, TX
2017Lantian ‘Max’ LiangUniversity of SydneySydney, Australia
2015Jong Min OhThe University of Central FloridaOrlando, FL
2015Alex HolcombThe Univeristy of Texas at El PasoEl Paso, TX
2015Paul MasonBaylor UniversityWaco, TX
2014Chongyang ‘Ben’ ChenUniversity of Memphis
(Visiting Assistant Professor)
Memphis, TN
2014Seong-Kyu ByunUniversity of MississippiUniversity, MS
2014Wenyun ‘Michelle’ ShiShanghai Jiao Tong UniversityShanghai, China
2013Zeng ‘Timothy’ FanShanghai UniversityShanghai, China
2013Yihua ZhaoTulane University
(Visiting Assistant Professor)
New Orleans, LA
2013Yue ‘Layla’ YingZhejiang UniversityHangzhou, China
2013Yuqian ‘Jessica’ WangWinona State UniversityWinona, MN
2011Yin ‘Jay’ LiCity University of Hong KongHung Hom, Kowloon, Hong Kong
2010Michael KeefeVictoria University of WellingtonWellington, New Zealand
2010Xuying ‘Cathy’ CaoUniversity of Texas at Dallas
(Visiting Assistant Professor)
Richardson, TX
2009Lin ZouTexas Woman’s UniversityDenton, TX
2009Walter PohlUniversity of Zurich
Zurich, Switzerland
2009Jess CornaggiaIndiana UniversityBloomington, IN
2008Xin ZhouFudan UniversityShanghai, China
2008Mehmet GoktanCalifornia State University, East BayHayward, CA
2007Yiyu ShenGovernors State UniversityUniversity Park, IL
2006Qian ‘Joyce’ WangWashington State UniversityPullman, WA
2005Rabih MoussawiBarclays Global Investors
2005Zhengzheng ‘George’ LiNew Jersey City UniversityJersey City, NJ

Below are examples of student publications in 24 leading business journals.

Jay Yin Li, Jess Cornaggia, 2019. “The value access to finance: evidence from m&as.” Journal of Financial Economics, vol. 131.

Ole Wilms, Walt Pohl, Karl Schmedders, 2018. “Higher order effects in asset pricing models with long-run risks.” Journal of Finance, vol. 73.

Ryan Isrealsen, Jess Cornaggia, Kimberly Cornaggia, 2018. “Credit ratings and the cost of municipal financing.” The Review of Financial Studies, vol. 31.

Fabian Ackerman, Karl Schmedders, Walt Pohl, 2017. “Optimal and naïve diversification in currency markets.” Management Science, vol. 63.

Jess Cornaggia, Alexander Butler, Umit Gurun, 2017. “Do local capital market conditions affect consumers’ borrowing decisions?” Management Science, vol. 63.

Valentina Bruno, Jess Cornaggia, Kimberly J. Cornaggia, 2016. “Does Regulatory Certification Affect the Information Content of Credit Ratings?” Management Science, Vol. 62.

Jess Cornaggia, Kimberly J. Cornaggia, Han Xia, 2016. “Revolving doors on Wall Street,”Journal of Financial Economics, Vol. 120.

Jay Yin Li, Dragon Yongjun Tang , 2016. “The leverage externalities of credit default swaps”. Journal of Financial Economics, Vol. 120.

Jess Cornaggia, Yifei Mao, Xuan Tian, Brian Wolfe, 2015. “Does banking competition affect innovation?” Journal of Financial Economics, Vol. 115.

Nina Baranchuk, Robert Kieschnick, Rabih Moussawi, 2014. “Motivating innovation in newly public firms,” Journal of Financial Economics, Vol. 111.

Itzhak Ben-David, Francesco Franzoni, Augustin Landier, Rabih Moussawi, 2013. “Do hedge funds manipulate stock prices?” Journal of Finance, Vol. 68.

Jess Cornaggia, 2013. “Does risk management matter? Evidence from the U.S. agricultural industry,” Journal of Financial Economics, Vol. 109.

Jess Cornaggia and Kimberly Cornaggia, 2013. “Estimating the costs of issuer-paid credit ratings,” The Review of Financial Studies, Vol. 26.

Zhonglan Dai, Douglas Shackelford, Harold Zhang, Chongyang Chen, 2013. “Does financial constraint affect the relation between shareholder taxes and the cost of equity capital?” The Accounting Review, Vol. 88.

Itzhak Ben-David, Francessco Franzoni, Rabih Moussawi, 2012. “Hedge fund stock trading in the financial crisis of 2007-2009,” The Review of Financial Studies, Vol. 25.

Theodore Day, George Li, Yexiao Xu, 2011. “Dividend distributions and closed-end fund discounts,” Journal of Financial Economics, Vol. 100.

Alexander Butler and Jess Cornaggia, 2011. “Does access to external finance improve productivity? evidence from a natural experiment,” Journal of Financial Economics, Vol. 99.

Aleandar Butler, Jess Cornaggia, Gustavo Grullon, James Weston, 2011. “Corporate financing decisions, managerial market timing, and real investment,” Journal of Financial Economics, Vol. 101.