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Wilfrid Laurier University Lazaridis School of Business & Economics
October 27, 2016
Canadian Excellence

PhD in Financial Economics

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Who Should Apply?

Our PhD in Management Program is designed to develop graduates skilled in research with both theoretical and practical understanding of the complex problems of business management.  Our doctoral program provides excellent preparation for academic, professional and research careers.


What Can You Expect?

Coursework that is designed to provide a solid theoretical foundation in Financial Economics combined with exceptional statistical and methodological training including research methods, research design, and quantitative analyses.  Building on the Financial Economics theory, students undertake research in key areas of financial management: financial markets, corporate finance and governance, options and other structured products.  Students will also have the opportunity to delve deeper into topics with special topic courses, electives, and directed studies.

Students will conduct their own research under the guidance of our faculty supervisors.  Students are expected to engage in research throughout the program, culminating in the completion of their dissertation.

Students will be exposed to cutting edge research from our faculty supervisors and guest speakers, as well as networking opportunities within the academic community.

Program Overview

The primary objective of the PhD in Management program is to train students to become independent research investigators in their chosen field of study. The program is designed to develop graduates skilled in research with both a theoretical and practical understanding of the complex problems of business management.

The PhD in Management is a four year program:

  •  The first two years are primarily course work.  Students are required to successfully complete a comprehensive exam at the end of Year 2 in their field of specialization.
  •  In Year 3, students are required to prepare and orally defend a dissertation proposal to an advisory committee consisting of the faculty supervisor and two other faculty members.

A Sampling of Required Courses

  • EC620 - Microeconomics
  • EC640 - Macroeconomics
  • EC655 - Econometrics
  • MF703 - Seminar in Corporate Finance 
  • BU753 - Empirical Studies in Fixed Income
  • BU802 - Research Methodology
  • BU803 - Theory of Asset Pricing
  • BU807 - Accounting for Securities
  • BU813 - Empirical Studies in Derivatives
  • BU823 - Seminar in Financial Economics
  • BU833 - Empirical Asset Pricing
  • BU843 - Seminar in Advanced Financial Econometrics
  • BU853 - Seminar in Empirical Market Microstructure
  • BU891 - Comprehensive Exam
  • BU899 - Doctoral Dissertation

The full course structure is available here.

Detailed course descriptions can be found in the Graduate Academic Calendar 2013/2014.


Minimum $20,000 per year guaranteed funding for up to four years. Further support may be available.

International PhD applicants can apply for an Ontario Trillium Scholarship, valued at $40,000 per year for up to four years.  More information about this opportunity can be found here.

Information regarding external awards can be found on the Faculty of Graduate & Postdoctoral Studies website.

Admission Requirements

Admission into the PhD program is judged primarily on the applicantís ability to undertake research successfully and his/her prospects for completion of the program.


A Masterís Degree (or equivalent) in business or a related field with a minimum B+ average is normally required.


The School of Business & Economics requires that all applicants submit scores obtained on the Graduate Management Admission Test (GMAT).  GMAT test scores of at least 85 percentile (generally a score of at least 650) are standard.  Equivalent Graduate Record Examinations (GRE) scores will be accepted, generally a composite score of at least 305 (1100 pre-Aug 2011) when appropriate.


Applicants whose first language is not English, and who have not completed an undergraduate or graduate degree at an institution where English is the language of instruction, must furnish evidence of proficiency in English prior to admission.  Normally, this evidence is an acceptable score on one of the following: TOEFL, IELTS, CAEL Assessment.  For more information, please refer to the English Proficiency Requirements.

Applications will only be reviewed once you have applied online and we have received all supplementary materials in our office.

As this is a competitive program with a limited number of spaces available, meeting the minimum requirements does not guarantee admission into the program.


Application Deadline

Applications for September 2014 admission are currently being accepted.  The early application deadline is January 15, 2014.  We will continue accepting qualified applications after this date based on space availability in the program.

Contact Information

For program information, please contact Dr. Brian Smith at

For application information, please contact Amanda Kristensen at