Our program is flexible, so you can adapt it to your interests. You can choose a minor field in another area of business (e.g., strategy, management, etc.) or a minor field outside the Kelley School to complement your major in marketing (e.g., psychology, statistics, economics, etc.) Most students complete the program in four to five years. See the profiles and publications of our current doctoral students.
Prepare for a career in academia.
Learn from the Best
To be an exceptional professor and researcher, you need to learn from—and work with—the best. The Kelley School’s marketing faculty is known worldwide for its scholarship. Our faculty members are published frequently in prestigious journals such as the Journal of Marketing, Journal of Marketing Research, Journal of Consumer Research, and Marketing Science. They are on the editorial boards of more than 10 marketing journals.
Unique Research and Resources
Our Customer Interface Virtual Laboratory enables you to track shopper behavior and test consumers’ reactions to new product and packaging concepts. Our Lab Store within a national retailer is the only one of its kind. We also have a Behavioral Technology Lab and access to a variety of databases, including S&P Compustat, CRSP, Factset, I/B/E/S, Sustainalytics, KLD, ISS Directors, RavenPack, ACNielsen, Productscan, and Brandwatch, among others. Our three centers support research, and our seminar series enables you to hear about new marketing research from leading scholars around the world and present your own research.
Our degree requirements include coursework, research mentorship, written and oral qualifying examinations, participation in our seminar series, and a dissertation. You will also be required to do a very limited amount of teaching to prepare you for your classroom responsibilities as a junior faculty.
The primary goal of the research assignments is to provide students with an opportunity to engage in the research process, from the idea stage to journal submission in the early stages of the doctoral program. Immediately following admission into the doctoral program (usually around March/April) doctoral students for the incoming class are paired with faculty mentor(s) with shared research interests.
This early mentorship often yields multiple research projects, including the first and second-year research papers, and frequently, helps frame and define the doctoral student dissertation topic. This initial mentorship assignment continues through the end of the first year in the program, and the research stemming from this partnership is frequently leveraged into the first-year research paper assignment.
During the second year, doctoral students are formally assigned to another mentor (with common research interests), seeking to expose the student to different perspectives on a common stream of research. Additionally, the mentorship rotation prepares students to manage multiple research projects, develop a research portfolio, and grow a network of research collaborators. It is not uncommon for the first and second-year faculty mentors to serve as chair and/or members in the student’s dissertation committee.
Finally, the research projects resulting from the research mentorship are usually presented at conferences and developed into complete research papers submitted to journals, for consideration for publication. The goal of the research mentorship is to develop a portfolio of completed and working papers at conferences and journals, by the end of the fourth year in the program, when students interview for an academic position.
The qualifying exam is designed to assess a student's ability to think conceptually, creatively, and critically. A student's task is to submit original research that may be publishable in a major marketing journal.
The program has two qualifying exams, one at the end of the first academic year, and another at the end of the second academic year. Both exams require that students develop an interesting, important, and relevant research question in marketing, write an academic paper, demonstrating their conceptual knowledge of the extant literature and empirical methods, and present the paper to the marketing faculty. The first-year research paper focus primarily on the motivation and conceptualization of the proposed research question, while the second-year research paper should be a completed manuscript (including data and analyses), at a stage of development that is relatively close to submission to a top marketing journal.
Unsatisfactory performance will result in failing the qualifying exams. Repeated unsatisfactory performance in the qualifying exams, will result in dismissal from the doctoral program.
The marketing research seminar series is considered an integral part of the program and all students are expected read the working papers, attend the presentations, and actively participate in the seminar. Speakers in the marketing seminar series may be faculty candidates (fall semester), faculty from other universities, faculty from other schools within IU, faculty within our department, or our own Ph.D. students presenting their dissertation research or other research projects.
Doctoral students in marketing are expected to gain experience in teaching undergraduate classes during their time in the program. The exact nature of the teaching assignments will vary depending upon the student’s background and the needs of the marketing department.
However, doctoral students are usually responsible for teaching either the Introduction to Marketing (M300), or the Marketing Research (M303) courses. The teaching assignment requires that doctoral students in marketing teach two courses during the term of the doctoral program. Usually, students will teach their first course during the third year in the program, either in the Fall or Spring semester, while the second course (same prep), is usually taught during the Fall semester in the fourth year.
Finally, during the fifth year in the doctoral program, students will serve as teaching assistants for a faculty member for an upper level undergraduate or master’s course in marketing. The assigned course should be similar in content to one that students would most likely be responsible for during their first faculty position.