The goal of the PhD in Accounting program is to develop accounting academics capable of sustaining themselves in academic careers, based upon experience which typically includes having achieved professional certification. This means that graduate students have to become self-reliant researchers capable of generating original ideas, gathering data in support of those ideas, crafting publishable quality manuscripts and working effectively with the peer review process. In addition, doctoral studies should make the student an active consumer of the research done by others, enabling the person to review research submitted for publication and presentation and to assess the scholarly merits in the efforts of colleagues. During doctoral studies students will also develop into capable teachers prepared to deliver instruction for a college or university. Following an introduction usually consisting of teaching assistance rendered to a faculty person, doctoral students will teach at least one course during their program. Finally, doctoral students learn about the culture of higher education and the business school so that their ability and willingness as a resource provider to a host of constituents will be initiated.
The PhD in accountancy is structured, and a student’s study plan is developed, to support high-quality research and effective teaching based upon knowledge and skill levels appropriate to a student’s goals. Doctoral students work with faculty whose research investigates matters of importance to academics, practitioners and policy makers, in order to influence practice and standard setting in both the private and public sectors.
CWRU accountancy doctoral programs of study are designed to prepare students who have achieved practice experience and demonstrated maturity as both a consumer and a producer of research. In the former category students are trained to critically read a substantial variety of academic work so as to be a full-fledged participant in the life of an academic department, a business school and the worldwide academic accounting discipline. They are prepared to use their talents to expand what we collectively know. Being a producer is definitively more selective and more ambitious than being a consumer. As a research producer, the student will become an expert on using at least one major methodology within a sub-field of accounting. We engage students earlier in the research process and substitute a series of research papers as evidence of progress in lieu of traditional comprehensive examinations, thus differentiating the CWRU program significantly.