The Executive PhD Program in Business Administration is a 120 US (240 ECTS) credit degree.

The program is organized into concentrated course modules four times per year for the first two years. Doctoral fellows without an MBA degree will also take MBA courses with Executive MBA participants. The course modules are specifically designed to increase the knowledge of and ability to contribute to the current applied business and management research literature. As is typical with a US doctoral degree and upon successful completion of a Comprehensive Exam at the end of the second year, doctoral fellows then proceed to their doctoral dissertation research.

CEU Executive PhD coursework is structured into the following categories:

(for candidates without an accredited MBA degree)

The core business classes are a set of courses designed to lay the foundation for the doctoral fellows’ research and career. These fundamental business courses provide a wide range of business knowledge that can be used to both study and apply research to various aspects of business. You will take these courses with our executive MBA students, giving you the chance to learn from fellow business leaders and to form fruitful collaborations with them.

During the research and professional development classes you will learn how to design, conduct, and write up research projects and will begin to think about and work on their dissertation.

You will take a series of advanced seminars with the faculty in core disciplines in business and management. Focusing on their specific areas of expertise, each faculty will expose you to the state-of-the-art and seminal literature in their field with a view to providing the basis for advanced research at the dissertation stage of the program.

In order to give you with the opportunity to expand your knowledge in line with your interests and goals, you can choose additional courses in any of CEU’s graduate programs including various master’s and PhD-level courses across several disciplines. Most of these electives are offered in the Executive MBA Summer elective which takes place immediately before the PhD August module.

After having completed all coursework credits the Probationary Candidates will be admitted to the Comprehensive Exam, at the end of Year 2. The Comprehensive Examination is intended to assess PhD preparation drawing on the coursework of the course modules. There will be three committee members drawn for the exam from the Economics and Business Faculty. After a successful comprehensive defense, you will present research proposal in line with the fields and topics covered during the course modules of the program. You will prepare for the exam through an advisor, one member of the faculty who has taught one of the courses taken in the initial coursework period of the program. After successfully passing the Comprehensive Examination the selection of your dissertation advisor is finalized. You will propose your potential main advisor from CEU full-time management faculty members. The final decision about the main advisor will be made after successful completion of the

After EPhD Coursework

After successfully passing all coursework and the Comprehensive Exam, you will present your draft research proposal to all members of the Doctoral Committee. Your research proposal is made before your fellow executive PhDs and the faculty. You’ll receive meaningful feedback on your final research proposal and build a roadmap to completion of the dissertation. Along the way, we will support you to ensure you achieve a rigorous, meaningful and impactful doctoral dissertation!

Once you have completed the dissertation, you will come to the defense stage of your research. You will have an opportunity to have a ‘dry run’ mock defense with faculty to iron out any particular issues and to give you an opportunity to make revisions before the formal defense. The formal defense is public – it is announced at University level and any members of the CEU community can attend.