• Schulich’s PhD in Finance program focuses on developing ground-breaking research in the field of Finance. Through exposure to world-renowned faculty, strong preparatory coursework, and access to comprehensive data sources, the program prepares its graduates to discover and publish new research that can alter how financial markets, individuals, and corporations raise money and invest for the future.

Specialization Details by Category

Study Options

View details Hide details

Student admission is restricted to full-time study exclusively for the first four years. It is not recommended to be working outside of the PhD program during your studies. Students must be able to participate in the PhD program in Toronto.

The PhD program normally takes four to five years to complete. The actual length of study depends strongly on each student’s academic background, exact thesis topic and outside commitments.

Choose a study option to view its details and requirements


View details Hide details

FIRST YEAR DOCTORAL STUDENTS: Please click on and review the attached program structure document, which relates to specialization requirements.

Doctoral students must complete the following components of the PhD program:

  1. Core Courses (finance seminars, microeconomic and macroeconomic theories and econometrics)
  2. Summer Research Papers
  3. Comprehensive Examination (Written and Oral Exam, Research Paper)
  4. Dissertation

Year 1


GS/ECON 5100 3.00: Microeconomics Theory
GS/ECON 6220 3.00: Advanced Econometric Theory I
GS/ECON 6250 3.00: Advanced Econometric Theory

  • Research Seminars
  • Written Comprehensive Exam (end of April)
  • 1st Summer Research Paper

Year 2

GS/ECON 5110 3.00: Topics in Macroeconomic Theory
GS/ECON 6100 3.00: Topics in Microeconomic Theory

  • Two PhD Electives
  • Research Seminars required
  • Oral Comprehensive Exam
  • Pedagogical Techniques
  • 2nd Summer Research Paper

Year 3

  • Research Seminars required
  • Defend thesis proposal
  • Present 2nd Summer Research Paper
  • Teach a finance course

Year 4 & 5

  • Research Seminars required
  • Present Job Market Paper
  • Defend dissertation
  • Teach a finance course

We recommend further consultation with your area Ph.D. rep concerning any impending changes to the program requirements and guidance on selecting appropriate optional courses.


View details Hide details
  • PhD students have the opportunity to work with some of the top experts in the field of finance. Our faculty has published a variety of research on behavioural finance, corporate governance, executive compensation, personal finance, institutional behavior, and international finance in leading finance and economic journals.

    Through collaboration and mentorship with these leading researchers, our PhD graduates are well positioned to produce high quality research that will eventually lead to publications with high scholarly impact.

Career Opportunities

View details Hide details
  • Placement of Recent Graduates

    The PhD in Finance program will prepare you for an academic career at a top research university in Canada, the US, or the rest of the world. The program will help you build a strong theoretical and empirical foundation in finance. Combined with our faculty’s wide-ranging research expertise, our program will position you for a strong career in finance research.

    Yelin Zhang  Gonzaga University
    Shiu-Yik Au  University of Manitoba
    Andreanne Tremblay Simard  University of Laval
    Jisok Kang  University of Cambirdge (UK)
    Feng Zhan  John Carroll University, Boler School of Business
    Mehdi Beyhaghi  University of Texas at San Antonio
    Hamdi Driss  Saint Mary’s University
    Markus Broman  Syracuse University
    Ling-Wu Shao  Morneau Shepell
    Dan Li  University of Hong Kong
    Keke Song  Dalhousie University


Research Requirements

View details Hide details
  • Students must work as research assistants for the first three years of the program in order to receive financial support and be prepared for their dissertation.

    When they are at the dissertation stage, Ph.D. candidates are expected to actively dialogue – both formally in seminars and informally – with other area members within the confines of their dissertation. In addition, students should plan to attend or present their research at well-known academic conferences such as the Northern Finance Association, the Financial Management Association, the American Finance Association and the Western Finance Association. They may also be asked to help review manuscripts and journal articles by editors and associate editors.

    Students are required to teach one finance course before they go on the job market. This will help students to accumulate teaching experience which is an important ability to acquire in order to have a successful academic career.

Student Research

View details Hide details
  • Research is the most critical element of the development of student’s careers. Schulich’s Finance PhD program supports student’s research through interaction with faculty, access to major databases, and other research support.

    Selected Publications

    2014 Minjie Zhang – The Economic Impact of Entrepreneurship: Comparing International Datasets (with Douglas J. Cumming and Sofia Johan), March 2014, Corporate Governance: An International Review

    Recent Dissertation Topics

    • 2014 Feng Zhan – Essays On International Market Efficiency And Manipulation
    • 2012 Mehdi Beyhaghi – Three Essays in Banking: Credit Risk and Market Discipline
    • 2012 Ling-Wu Shao – Three Essays on the Value of Annuity Products to the Individual Investor
    • 2011 Dan Li – Empirical Studies in Law and Finance of Public and Private Firms
    • 2011 Keke Song – Three Essays on Financial Institutions

    Current PhD students in the Finance Area:

    as of March 2019

    • Ray Bawania
    • Batur Celik
    • Michael Densmore
    • Rui Duan
    • Hosein Hamisheh Bahar
    • Aman Khan
    • Alireza Mahalati Rayeni
    • Hossein Naderi Khorshidi
    • Daniel Tut
    • Xinyao Zhou