The Goldring/Woldenberg Business Complex

PhD in Business Administration
with a Concentration in Finance and Financial Accounting

Program Overview

The Freeman PhD provides exceptional preparation for both publishing cutting edge research and teaching in the areas of Corporate Finance, Investments and Financial Accounting.

Our students delve deep into both finance and financial accounting, acquiring a broad base of knowledge that provides greater flexibility in the job market. With this dual focus, graduates of the program are attractive hires in both accounting and finance departments. In four to five years, candidates are prepared to conduct empirical research and teach in the areas of corporate finance, investments and financial accounting, and they gain confidence leading the classroom by serving as teaching assistants and teaching independently.

App Deadline Update

The first application deadline is December 15th. Applications will be accepted on a rolling basis until January 15th.

Start Date: Aug. 2023

Candidates will be informed of admissions decisions in February 2023 and will begin studies in August.

Financial Support

Students accepted into the program will receive a tuition waiver and competitive financial support through an assistantship, providing mentorship in both research and teaching.

Our students embody Freeman’s priority of training future researchers to contribute to the field of finance.

Research Expertise

The Freeman Ph.D. program prepares students to contribute original scholarly work in the field of finance or financial accounting. Serving as a research assistant, participating in an active seminar series with national thought leaders, and early co-authored work with faculty who have published in the top journals help build the research and critical thinking skills necessary to complete the student dissertation, a substantial, significant, and original contribution to the field. In addition to coursework, research expertise will be developed in research assistantships and student papers done early in the program.

First Year

During the first year, students will become familiar with research by completing a semester as a research assistant to a faculty member. In the summer after the first year, students will also be required to complete a replication of an empirical paper in finance or financial accounting. Alternatively, some students may work as a co-author with a tenure system faculty member to complete research. Students will continue with another semester as a research assistant during the second year.

Second Year

During the second year, students are required to work with tenure system faculty members and co-author an article aimed at a top finance or accounting journal. In recent years, students have presented their co-authored papers at top conferences and been considered for publications in distinguished journals. Students will continue working as a research assistant during one semester of the second year. 

Third Year

No later than the summer after the second year, students must commence work on an independent research project in finance or financial accounting under the supervision of a faculty committee. The student must successfully present the resulting paper to the finance and financial accounting faculty for advancement in the program by the end of the third year.

Freeman ranks among the top 100 business schools for research contributions in 24 top journals, and in the latest UT Dallas Top 100 Business School Research Rankings had the highest jump among North American schools.

With progressive responsibility in the classroom, first as a teaching assistant, then teaching independently, Freeman students gain the confidence to transition seamlessly to their academic careers.

Teaching Assistantship

Students gain comfort in the classroom as they work with a faculty member as a teaching assistant during the first three years of the program.


Students must successfully complete one teaching assistantship and attend the CELT class for graduate teaching assistants before they teach a class independently.

Independent Teaching

During the fourth and subsequent years, students will independently teach two courses per year for their assistantship

We support you through the admissions process and throughout your time as a student. Learn more.

Renowned Faculty

The finance and financial accounting doctoral faculty includes leading researchers in their respective areas, who publish groundbreaking research in top journals, serve on influential editorial boards and top conference program committees, and referee in top journals.

Gus Defranco

Gus De Franco, KPMG Professor of Accounting

An active accounting researcher, Gus De Franco has published articles in the Journal of Accounting Research, The Accounting Review, Journal of Financial Economics, Review of Accounting Studies and Contemporary Accounting Research. Topics of his research include sell-side analysts, CFA charter holders, private firms’ accounting quality, relative valuation, and firms’ choice of compensation peers. De Franco has a broad business background including experience as an equity securities research analyst at CIBC Capital Markets and a marketing product manager at Kraft Inc.

C. Edward Fee

C. Edward Fee, Morton A. Aldrich Professor of Business 


In the world of corporate finance, Professor Fee is known for his research in two main areas: linking financial policies and customer-supplier relationships, and looking at managerial labor markets in terms of issues like incentives. He won the Best Paper Award in Review of Financial Studies in 2014, and he is often invited to present at academic seminars, including at Texas A&M University, North Carolina State University and Nanyang Technological University.

Gans Narayanamoorthy

Gans Narayanamoorthy, Professor

Professor Gans Narayanamoorthy’s research focuses on capital markets in accounting, with particular emphasis on market efficiency, litigation risk, insurance and bank accounting. His research has appeared in top journals and been featured twice in the Harvard Law Forum on Corporate Governance. His research has won the Founders Prize from the National Association of Active Investment Management. As a teacher, Professor Narayanamoorthy enjoys working with doctoral students and has served on ten Ph.D. committees to date. 

Our curriculum provides a solid foundation in finance, financial accounting, economics, and econometrics, and courses are designed to build critical research skills to prepare students for publishing academic papers.

Esteemed Alumni

Freeman’s PhD graduates have a strong record of placement at top schools and a record of notable publications. Our students have gone on to successful careers as tenured professors of accounting and finance at prestigious institutions including the University of Minnesota, the University of Rochester, Southern Methodist University, the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, North Carolina State University, Rutgers University, and the University of Central Florida.

Vivian Fang

"Tulane taught me to think critically and let my interests guide me freely."
Vivian Fang (MFIN '05, PhD '09), Associate Professor and Honeywell Professorship in Accounting Carlson School of Management, University of Minnesota

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