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We expect that a large majority of students will come from undergraduate business (accounting) or economics backgrounds and will have hence completed the basic financial accounting and managerial accounting core courses. Students who do not have formal coursework in accounting could also be admitted but would be expected to prepare for and pass exemption exams for these courses.
Students will complete a minimum of 10 full courses (30 credits) and a thesis in the following modules.
Fundamental Analysis Kernel (5 Courses, 15 credits) with three courses chosen from the following four plus two PhD seminars
- Earnings Quality and Fundamental Analysis (B8008)
- Financial Statement Analysis and Valuation (B8009)
- (PhD) Fundamental Analysis for Investors, Managers, and Entrepreneurs (B8010)
- Accounting for Value (B8022)
The PhD seminars provide the training and exposure that are critical for students as they work on their MS thesis.
- (The first PhD Seminar, on Valuation and Financial Statement Analysis (B9110) exposes students to empirical research in accounting as applied to valuation, fundamental analysis, and investing.
- The second PhD Seminar is chosen from an advanced empirical research seminar or an accounting theory seminar.
Together, these courses make the MS candidates attractive to hedge funds, investment management firms, and consulting firms who seek quantitatively trained professionals well trained in the state of art in academic research.
Training in Statistics, Finance and Economics (3 Courses, 9 credits)
Students take two courses in statistics and econometrics. These courses could be the existing PhD level courses offered by the Decisions, Risk, and Organizations group in the Business School or equivalent courses elsewhere in the university.
Students also take a PhD level course in Economics or Finance offered by the Finance and Economics group of the business school.
Additional Electives (at least 2 Courses 6 credits)
Students take two additional elective in an allied discipline such as Economics or Finance or an additional PhD seminar in Accounting. Examples of relevant electives include
- Capital Markets
- Advanced Corporate Finance
- An additional PhD seminar in Accounting, Finance or Economics
The likely course sequence by semester will be as follows, subject to scheduling:
Fall Semester (4 courses, 12 credits)
- PhD Seminar on Valuation and Financial Statement Analysis (B9110)
- One statistics or econometrics course
- Two courses for the fundamental analysis kernel requirement
Spring Semester (4 courses, 12 credits)
- One remaining course for the fundamental analysis kernel requirement
- A PhD Seminar in Finance or Economics
- The remaining statistics and econometrics requirement
- Second PhD Seminar in Accounting Research
Summer Semester (2 courses, 6 credits) and thesis (3 credits)
- Two additional elective courses
All MS degree students will be required to complete a substantial research project under the supervision of a faculty member. They will get ideas for a research project from the PhD seminar courses and the skills to execute it from their statistics classes.
The thesis will be guided by faculty member who will assign a grade. The professor will meet at regular intervals with all MS students over the summer to discuss their ongoing research in a classroom environment.
The expectation is that students will submit their thesis and complete the program (possibly related to the thesis) at the end of the summer semester. However, students also have an option of a summer internship (possibly related to their thesis) delaying completion of course requirements to the following fall.
Standards of Performance
Given our desire to run an elite program, we will require that students maintain at least an HP (equal to a B+) grade in the fundamental analysis kernel of the course and expect similar standards for all other coursework.