Frequently Asked Questions


How many students do you typically recruit?

We normally recruit two students a year and have seven to eight total students in the program.

Do you have part-time or online options in your doctoral program?

No, our doctoral program is for full-time on campus students.

Is a master's degree required for admission to the PhD program?

No, having a master's degree does make your application more competitive but we do admit students who do not have a previous graduate degree. Since the applicant has not taken graduate business courses, he or she would be required to take the full 24 semester hours in the marketing concentration area compared to those applicants that have the ability to transfer credits from their master's degree

Do you admit students in the Spring and Summer semesters?

No, we only admit students in the Fall semester.

Does your program include Summer semesters?

Many students try to fulfill their minor coursework during the summer. The summer session is a critical time for students to collect and analyze data in order to jump start the research publishing process. Students may also have the opportunity to teach a class over the summer to supplement their assistantship. There is an expectation that students will be in Starkville over the summer session.

How long is your program?

Most students complete the program in four years. Your first two years will be spent in coursework. Your last two years will be spent towards your dissertation.

Do you prefer the GMAT or GRE?

We prefer that you submit a GMAT score.

How recent must my test scores be?

GMAT test scores must have been taken within the last five years. TOEFL test scores must have been taken within the last two years.

Where have you placed students who graduated your program?

Our goal is to place our graduates at the best possible placement. Previous graduates have taken jobs in schools such as Clemson, Ole Miss, Rutgers, The University of Alabama at Birmingham, Villanova, Pepperdine, University of Houston, and Loyola University.

What does an assistantship entail?

For the first year of the program you will be a research assistant. This requires the student to spend 20 hours a week assisting a professor in any academic need that promotes research or instruction. After your first year, you will spend 10 hours a week as a research assistant and be required to teach one undergraduate marketing class.

Do doctoral students receive financial aid?

Yes. All accepted doctoral students will receive a stipend along with a full tuition fee waiver during the Fall and Spring semesters of the school year.

Do you have funds available for students to travel to academic conferences?

Yes. Our department has a dedicated travel budget for each student. The graduate school also has funds that can be applied for to aid students in the travel expenses and fees for academic conferences.

How will I be assigned to a professor in regards to my assistantship duties?

We try to match student's interests with that of the professor. If you have a particular interest in working with one of our faculty members, please make note of that in your statement of purpose letter.

If I am only interested in teaching on the college level, is getting a PhD right for me?

If your interests solely lie in teaching, then getting a PhD is not right for you. There are plenty of great instructor jobs at Universities that are focused on teaching. The majority of those jobs only require a master's degree. A PhD is a research degree and our focus is teaching the skills necessary to conduct research and publish in academic journals. If you don't have a desire to conduct research, then the PhD program may not be a good fit for you.

What is Mississippi State University like?

Mississippi State University is the largest university in the state of Mississippi with over 22,000 students. MSU adjoins the city of Starkville, MS. With a population of over 25,570, Starkville offers an appealing blend of college town traditions and 21st-century innovations. MSU is a Carnegie Research University holding the “Higher Research Activity” designation, as well as a Carnegie designation for “Community Engagement.” As part of the Southeastern Conference, you can experience the best of collegiate athletics. We have a regional airport located 15 minutes from Starkville which allow for easy access in regards travel. In 2007, the College of Business completed an expansion and renovation of McCool Hall. One of the areas included in the expansion was a new set of Marketing PhD student suites. Lastly, the new addition of faculty members in the marketing department have added to our diverse knowledge base further expanding our breadth of research opportunities. 

Do you have funds available to help students with their dissertation?

Yes. Our department dedicates a budget of $2,500 for each student to use towards their dissertation. These funds can be used for recruitment, experimental manipulations, data purchase, and other concerns related to the dissertation.

Do I need to buy a laptop when starting the program?

No. As one of the perks for being accepted into the doctoral program at Mississippi State, we purchase you a new laptop computer in your first semester. The computer will have all the necessary Microsoft applications and statistical software packages already loaded on the computer. We want to make sure you have all the necessary resources to be successful in our program.

What is the deadline to apply for the PhD program in Marketing?

All application materials must be received by January 15. Applicants are strongly encouraged to get their application packet in early as acceptance into the program is competitive.