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DBA Program Dissertation

Student talking in Drexel LeBow Executive DBA class

The Executive DBA program candidates at Drexel LeBow College of Business are required to complete and submit doctoral dissertation for committee approval.

The dissertation is an integral part of the Executive DBA program and serves as a demonstration of academic excellence in applying the science of business with all its expected rigor to an important problem of interest to the industry, as well as providing insight based on theory and supported by appropriate methodological and statistical rigor.

What is a Doctoral Dissertation?

The doctoral dissertation process is comprised of a series of courses, culminating in two major doctoral study milestones: defense of the proposal and defense of the completed research. The DBA dissertation will need to show relevance, be tied to appropriate scientific literature, and have appropriate methodology and analysis to support the conclusions outlined in the doctoral study paper.

Each candidate will be assigned a dissertation chair, who will guide the student through the process starting in year one, and committee who will evaluate the proposal and the completed research. Both proposal defense and completed research defense must attain a passing grade for the degree to be conferred. There are no qualifying or candidacy exams.

Danesha Chisholm landscape headshot

While I was challenged during this program on many levels, I always had my cohort and the faculty to lean on.

Global Senior Compliance Manager


Read more about Danesha
Michael Horton

I really strive to be a thought leader within my field and to push the envelope.

Senior Financial Analyst

Department of Treasury

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DBA Dissertation Structure - Research Focus

Why is DBA dissertation research so important? An Executive DBA program worth pursuing is one that holds candidates to the same rigorous standards as any other doctoral program. By maintaining a high standard, the degree holders may be confident in their accomplishment and conferred expert status.

An academically rigorous and research-based DBA degree from a ranked and credentialed institution may also qualify recipients also for academic teaching posts, and allow them to serve on some doctoral dissertation committees.

The reason the rigor and research are central to the experience is quite simple: The doctoral journey has the potential to change students. The intense focus, training in research techniques, the effort to express findings and make a publishable contribution gives students the ability to look at the business world through different lenses. There are no shortcuts to mastery in evidence-based practice.

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