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Financial Economics Ph.D.

The Department of Economics and the Finance Department in the Kellogg School of Management have a joint Ph.D. degree in Financial Economics.

The following requirements are in addition to, or further elaborate upon, general degree requirements and the policies on Satisfactory Progress, Probation and Exclusion of The Graduate School, and additional requirements for Satisfactory Academic Progress of the Department of Economics and the Finance Department.

Coursework Requirements



Core Courses:
ECON 410-1,2,3 Microeconomics
ECON 411-1,2,3 Macroeconomics
ECON 480-1,2,3 Econometrics

Nine Approved Field Courses that must include:
  • At least two courses in Asset Pricing (FINC 585-1, 2, 3)
  • At least two courses in Corporate Finance (FINC 586-1, 2, 3)
  • Two approved Economics Field sequences of at least two quarters
  • At least one course in Economic History (ECON 420-1 American Economic History (or) ECON 420-2 European Economic History)


Total Required Units: 18

Other Ph.D. Degree Requirements

Examinations: satisfactory grades in each of the three core areas (microeconomics, macroeconomics, and econometrics); oral examination for approval of dissertation prospectus

 Research/Projects: two research papers presented in the student seminar (ECON 501) or equivalent. Out of these, one paper is the second-year summer paper detailed below

 Finance Comprehensive Exam: Students must pass a Finance Competence Requirement. This can be done by achieving a 3.6 GPA across the six finance doctoral courses (FINC 585-1,2,3 and FINC 586-1,2,3), or by passing a comprehensive Finance exam. The Exam takes place at the beginning of the summer quarter of the second year, typically in June.

 Second-year Research Paper and Advisors: Students need to complete a research project to be presented to the department in the first week of September at the end of the summer quarter of the second year. The research project must be supervised by an individual faculty advisor (who can be the same as, or distinct from, the Academic Advisor) selected by the end of the winter quarter. The second-year advisor need not be the same person as the eventual main dissertation advisor.

 Ph.D. Dissertation: original, independent research

 Final Evaluations: oral dissertation defense

 Supervised Teaching Experience: All doctoral students are required to act as a teaching assistant for at least one quarter. As part of these duties, the student must lead a weekly discussion section. Teaching experience is an essential part of graduate training. Foreign students must demonstrate acceptable English proficiency as prescribed by The Graduate School. Evaluations are made and kept as part of the students' record.


 There are two points of entry into the joint graduate program in Financial Economics.