PhD

A PhD candidate of the School of Management will undertake a research project in the following areas which fall under the various Research Clusters of the school:

Enterprise Governance
Some typical topics include: Board composition and members' succession; CEO succession;  multiple directorship; monitoring intensity; the role of watchdogs; role of institutional investors, disclosure issues - financial, non-financial, voluntary; audit committee effectiveness; ownership structure

Leadership and Work Values
Some typical topics include: Leadership/managerial styles (in the broadest application); leadership behavior; work centrality; work values attitudes (job satisfaction, commitment, QWL); personal-organizational values congruence/fit; power-influence approach; organizational behavior; human resource management; strategic management; leader-member exchange (LMX) - supervisor-subordinate relationship; cross-cultural studies; gender issues; ethical decision making
    
Technology Management
Some typical topics include: Strategic/long-term issues relating to technology; process of Technological Innovations; R&D management, R&D Infrastructure & Technological change; product/process life cycles; technology transfer; technology risk analysis; quality & productivity issues; electronic organization; digital technology; knowledge management; product/process technology; information technology

Financial Market-Based Research
Some typical topics include: Ownership structure and firm value; derivatives pricing; behavioral finance; price reaction in IPOs and seasoned equity issue; risk measures and stock returns; market efficiency and stock performance; pricing issues and asset allocation; financial crisis and exchange rate exposure; anomalies, speculation and rationality; dividend policy and firm behavior; determinants of capital structure choice; corporate and financial restructuring; firm size and seasonal effect; Predicting financial distress and shareholder wealth; M&A and corporate change

Consumer Market-Based Research
Some typical topics include: Customer satisfaction with product and services, complaint behavior; green movement; Halal issues; government policies; product development and policies; Internal marketing; managing marketing relationship; philosophy of marketing management; changes in marketing and consumer taste due to technological advancement; consumer behavior in buying; selection of brand name, shopping location, lifestyle

Internationalisation
Some typical topic include: Strategies for entering markets; adaptation of marketing strategies; country of origin issues; strategic alliance.


APPLICATION FOR ADMISSION

An applicant for a PhD degree should posses the following qualifications:

  1. A Master's degree in related areas, or
  2. An outstanding Bachelor's degree (first class/CGPA >3.67 or equivalent)

A foreign applicant is required to have a minimum score of 550 in TOEFL (Test of English as a Foreign Language) or minimum score of 6.0 in IELTS (International English Language Testing System) or passed USM's Intensive English Course Level 3. Results must be attached with the application form.

A brief research proposal (approximately 250 words) indicating the background and objectives of the proposed topic of research


DURATION

A PhD degree can be completed in two modes i.e. either Full-time or Part-time.  

Full-time candidates need to complete their dissertation within 24 months and maximum of 60 months.

Part-time candidates are allowed to complete their dissertations within 36 months and a maximum of 90 months.


PROGRAMME STRUCTURE

Registration

A new candidate would be able to register at any time throughout the year. A foreign candidate outside of the Malay Archipelago is required to register as a full-time student.

Supervision

A candidate in both programmes will be supervised normally by one or two supervisors from the School throughout his/her candidature. The candidate is expected to discuss with the supervisors his/her plan of study and schedule regular meetings with the supervisors to discuss his/her progress.

Colloquium

All research mode students must participate in the School's Postgraduate Colloquium. The colloquium is held twice a year, normally in June and December. During the colloquium, students will participate in workshops on Research Methodology, listen to research related talks and present their progress.

Residency requirement

For a full-time candidate, the residency requirement is throughout his/her minimum candidature period.

For a part-time candidate, a residency requirement of 15 days a year is required.

Bahasa Malaysia requirement

A foreign candidate is required to register and pass the USM's LKM100 Bahasa Malaysia I within his/her candidature period.

Proposal/Findings Defense

A candidate in the PhD program in the School of Management is required to submit and present his/her proposal and findings of study before an Examining Committee appointed by the School. The proposal defense normally takes place towards the end of the first year for a full time student. The findings defense will take place once the student has obtained the results of study and written the discussion. Only upon satisfactory performance in both defenses can the candidate submit the final thesis to the Institute of Post-graduate Studies for the final viva-voce.

Thesis

A candidate for the PhD program is required to produce a thesis. As a general guideline, a PhD thesis should not exceed 80,000 words. The thesis can be written in either English or Bahasa Malaysia.

STRENGTHS OF THE PHD PROGRAM AT THE SCHOOL OF MANAGEMENT

The PhD program at the School of Management is a structured program and most candidates are able to complete their PhD candidacies on time compared to longer periods at other universities. Furthermore, the biyearly colloquium on research issues gives candidates a chance to access their own progress. In addition to that, as the PhD candidate’s research is conducted within the specific research clusters, PhD candidates can be assured of the best supervision and resources possible to ensure a quality dissertation is produced.