Calculus, matrix algebra, computer programming, and statistics are prerequisites for the Ph.D. program. Students are required to have the related coursework and satisfy the prerequisite requirements before joining the program.
The degree plan is personalized and tailored to each student's research interests and career objectives given prior training and level of experience. The curriculum of the Ph.D. program includes the following three key components: research methods courses (18 credit hours), Supporting Field (9 credit hours), and SCM major field courses (15 credit hours). The doctoral dissertation requires a minimum of 18 of credit hours.
Research Methods Courses (18 required credit hours)
Supply Chain Management is a central business function that is concerned with the effective management of developing new products and services, as well as the logistics operations of production and distribution. Research in this area covers a wide array of topics and builds upon a variety of disciplines including Economics, Industrial Organization, and Statistics. Students are required to take a series of Ph.D. level methodology courses to help them build a solid foundation to conduct rigorous academic research.
Supporting Field (9 required credit hours)
At the same time, Ph.D. students will also benefit from an exposure to different functional areas (i.e., MIS, marketing, finance, accounting, healthcare, and management) in business. This supporting field course requirement is very helpful for students conducting cross-functional research, interdisciplinary research, and for effectively teaching business school students with diverse backgrounds. Selection of a supporting field and the specific courses used to satisfy the supporting field requirements shall be made by the students subject to the approval of the SCM Ph.D. Coordinator.
SCM Major Field Courses and Seminars (15 required credit hours)
At the same time, Ph.D. students will also benefit from an exposure to multiple functional areas (i.e., MIS, marketing, finance, accounting, and management) in business. For those students who do not have an MBA.
Although the exact schedule of courses/milestones is personalized and based on a student's prior background, a typical program of study for new students is based on the assumption that the student has the required background in Business, Calculus, and Computer Programming. The program could be appropriately tailored to specific students’ needs. Depending on the students’ academic background, students can transfer/waive up to two courses provided they give proper justification as to why such substitution is important to achieving their academic goals. Students can also take the equivalent courses from Rice University through the Inter-Institutional Course Registration. Students must get written approval from the Ph.D. coordinator when transferring/waiving and substituting.
Year 1 and 2, and possibly in year 3 Coursework
Required Research Methods Coursework (15 credits)
- ECON 7341 - Microeconomics I
- ECON 7342 - Microeconomics II
- ECON 7335 - Applied Econometrics
- MATH 6382 - Probability and Statistics I
- INDE 6372 - Advanced Linear Optimization
Optional Research Methods Coursework (3 credits from one of the following courses)
- INDE 7340 - Integer Programming
- MATH 6312 - Introduction to Real Analysis
- INDE 7342 - Nonlinear Optimization
- INDE 7397 - Decision Modeling and Optimization under Uncertainty
- INDE 6370 - Digital Simulation
- ECON 7331 - Econometrics I
- ECON 8331 - Econometrics II
- ECON 7364 - Experimental Economics
- MARK 8349 - Multivariate Methods in Marketing
- Or other methodology course approved by the SCM Ph.D. program coordinator
General Business Courses or Supporting Field (9 required credit hours)
- Students must get written approval from the Ph.D. director when registering the supporting field courses.
SCM Major Field Courses and Doctoral Courses (15 credits)
- SCM 7330 - Demand and Supply Integration
- SCM 8397 - Selected Topics in SCM: Behavioral Operations Management (Research Seminar)
- SCM 8397 - Selected Topics in SCM: Logistics and Distribution (Research Seminar)
- SCM 8397 - Selected Topics in SCM: Survey of SCM Research Topics (Research Seminar)
- SCM 8397 - Selected Topics in SCM: Analytical Modeling in Operations Management (Research Seminar)
Year 3 and 4 Prepare and Defend dissertation proposal.
All required coursework must be completed before the proposal defense can be scheduled.
Year 5 Defend dissertation.
In some exceptional cases, a Ph.D. candidate may be able to complete all requirements, including completion of the dissertation in four years. For such students it is expected that they will have at least one research paper in the revision round or better in a high-quality research journal.
Sample Coursework Path
Students are encouraged to follow the suggested course plan in order to have the proper background for the related research seminars. But there may be some deviation from this course plan based on the course offering and other factors. Students should consult with the SCM PhD program coordinator for their plan.
||Dissertation and supporting field course||Dissertation|
Qualifying Exam (At the end of the 1st year)
There are three components in the qualifying exam, which include 1) A critique of a published research paper, 2) performance on coursework and faculty inputs, and 3) faculty review.
Critique of Research Paper
At the end of the first year, students are expected to finish a critique and make a research presentation. The student should present a published paper in an area of their research interest. The paper can be chosen in consultation with the PhD program coordinator. The presentation should not be from the perspective of the author; rather, it should be from the perspective of a reviewer critiquing the paper - evaluating its strengths and weaknesses, delineating how the paper relates to the broader literature and suggesting ways to extend the work. The student also needs to submit a written critique of the target paper to the PhD program coordinator one week prior to the presentation date. The oral presentation and written critique will be assessed on criteria such as grasp of the substantive issues, grasp of the methodological issues, and presentation skills.
Performance on Coursework and Faculty Inputs
The student must achieve a grade point average of 3.25 in all graduate work attempted at the University of Houston excluding dissertation credit. The student must achieve a grade of B or better in each of the three courses counting toward the supporting field. Moreover, the student must achieve an overall grade point average of 3.25 in the supporting field. For more details, please refer to https://www.bauer.uh.edu/doctoral/program/phd-policies.php
The SCM faculty will also evaluate the students’ performance on her/his performance as an instructional assistant or research assistant during the first year.
Students are also expected to communicate orally with the SCM area faculty about their research interest, and potential research area. Students are allowed to prepare a slide (no more than 15 pages) to facilitate the research discussion. The main objective of this faculty review is to provide feedback and help the students to develop their research from an early stage.
Final decision to pass/fail the qualifying exam will be by faculty vote. Students will be provided the pass or fail decision in writing from the SCM PhD program director within one week after the completion of all components listed above. This letter will clearly communicate the pass/fail decision and provide sufficient detail to justify the decision. Critique of the published research paper and faculty review will usually be arranged in the same day to facilitate the logistics. One and only one attempt at passing the first-year qualifying examination will be permitted.
Comprehensive Exam (At the end of the 2nd year)
Students should follow the college rule.
Students should follow the college rule.
Teaching is also an important element of a successful Ph.D. graduate. As an institution, Bauer and UH place a great deal of emphasis on teaching and makes teaching training and resources available to the Ph.D. students. Specifically, students can have the access to the workshops and training program from the Office of Digital Learning at Bauer College and the FED (Faculty Engagement and Development) from the University of Houston.
Students are expected to accumulate teaching experience by serving as the instructional assistants in the first three years. Students are also expected to contribute to the course development and employment of new technology under the supervision from the faculty member. Each Ph.D. students is also expected to teach a full course independently preferably in their third or fourth year. Students can teach more than the minimum one course, depending on DISC department needs. However, this teaching shall not disrupt their progress toward publishing research and successful defense of their dissertation.