Accounting PhD/MPhil/MSc (Research)

The PhD programme in Accounting will facilitate the creation and interpretation of new knowledge by the research student, demonstrated through the thesis.

The programme comprises a short taught component followed by a longer research phase. Taught modules allow the students to broaden, as well as deepen, their knowledge of research methods at the same time as undertaking their own research and developing a set of transferable professional skills. The taught component is designed to ensure that doctoral researchers understand the breath of techniques used in modern social science research.

Doctoral researchers will be capable of analysing a range of data using a range of qualitative and quantitative techniques. They will be able to explain theories underlying different approaches to social science research. Doctoral researchers are expected to participate to the fullest possible extent in the life of the Department of Accounting and the Business School. This means attending seminars organised by the Department of Accounting and more widely in the Business School thereby helping expose doctoral researchers to new ideas emanating from outside their own area of specialisation. It also requires actively participating in PhD workshops and conferences organised by the Department of Accounting, the Business School and Graduate School as well as institutions outside the University of Birmingham.

Ultimately all doctoral researchers will have the ability to characterise and solve business and accounting problems using advanced research tools. They should be able to derive policy implications from their research and communicate these to policy makers, practitioners and other academics in a manner which is comprehensible. They will also be able to peer review others’ research and offer constructive criticism and to extend the frontiers of the discipline through their own innovative research.

Doctoral researchers may choose to become academics, work in Government, businesses, supranational organisations or in the research arms of major financial institutions. They are expected to achieve a substantial understanding of contemporaneous accounting and business issues enabling them to take a lead in ongoing debates within society. They will be aware of and understand the function of related institutions at both a national and international level.

Birmingham Business School has been placed 17 out of 101 business schools in the Research Excellence Framework (REF) 2014, according to the Association of Business Schools. 68 percent of our research activity was judged to be 'world-leading' (4*) or 'internationally excellent' (3*) according to the national REF results. This ranking puts us ahead of Aston, Cranfield, Edinburgh, Oxford and a range of other UK Schools. The Research Excellence Framework 2014 (REF) assesses the quality and impact of research conducted at universities in England, Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland, and replaces the Research Assessment Exercise (RAE), which was last carried out in 2008. Recognition in the REF as a leading, research-led organization concludes a successful year in which Birmingham Business School joined the 1% of business schools worldwide awarded ‘triple crown accreditation’ from the international ranking bodies, AACSB, EQUIS and AMBA.

Course fact file

Type of Course: Doctoral research

Study Options: Full time

Duration: PhD – 3 years full-time equivalent; MPhil – 2 years full-time equivalent; MSc (Research) – 1 year full-time equivalent

Start date: September

Contact

You can contact us on +44 (0)121 414 5005 

Got a question? Use our ask us anything  facility to get the answer you need.

Doctoral Programmes Office Administrator: Marleen Vanstockem
Tel: +44 (0) 121 414 3498
Email: m.h.l.vanstockem@bham.ac.uk

Details

Doctoral researchers in Accounting are registered for a full time 3-year PhD or a part-time 6-year PhD. In the first year of the programme (first two years for those registered part-time) students are required to take and successfully complete 60 credits of core Research Methods modules.

Those researchers using more qualitative methodologies will take modules from the MA Social Research programme. They are also recommended to take Advanced Training Modules from the MA Social Research Programme as appropriate to their research and training needs. Depending on their needs and accredited prior learning and subject to supervisory approval doctoral researchers can substitute 20 credits of the introductory MA Social research modules for Advanced Training Modules.

Those researchers employing quantitative methodologies are required to take Econometrics with Financial Applications module from the Department of Economics (30 credit module). They also need to take at least one of the existing MSc Investments and MSc International Accounting and Finance courses and one other module to successfully complete 60 credits of study. The MSc module and one other appropriate M or D level module should be chosen in agreement with the doctorial researcher’s supervisor, as appropriate for the their research topic.  Modules available include: Financial Modelling and Forecasting Techniques (20 credits), Empirical Topics in Accounting and Finance (20 credits) and Quantitative Methods in Finance (10 credits). Doctoral researchers are also recommended to take Advanced Training Modules from the MA Social Research Programme or other modules (e.g. Qualitative Methods) as appropriate to their research and training needs.

By the end of their first year all doctoral students in Accounting will have completed an 8,000 word research proposal that they will present and be evaluated on at the first annual review. This forms the basis for supervised research over the remaining two years of the programme and the production of an 80,000 word thesis.

Fees and funding

Standard fees apply
Learn more about fees and funding 

Scholarships and studentships
Scholarships may be available. International students can often gain funding through overseas research scholarships, Commonwealth scholarships or their home government.

For further information contact the School directly or www.studenthelp.bham.ac.uk.

Entry requirements

A good Honours first degree and a Masters degree with at least UK Merit level in Economics or a related subject with relevant mathematical and statistical techniques.

Learn more about entry requirements

International students
We accept a range of qualifications from different countries – learn more about international entry requirements 

English requirement - IELTS 7 with no less than 6.5 in any band or equivalent. 

How to apply

Learn more about applying 

If you are interested in applying, please contact Marleen Vanstockem

Doctoral Programmes Office Administrator: Marleen Vanstockem
Tel: +44 (0) 121 414 3498
Email: m.h.l.vanstockem@bham.ac.uk

When clicking on the Apply Now button you will be directed to an application specifically designed for the programme you wish to apply for where you will create an account with the University application system and submit your application and supporting documents online. Further information regarding how to apply online can be found on the How to apply pages

Apply now

Contact

You can contact us on +44 (0)121 414 5005 

Got a question? Use our ask us anything  facility to get the answer you need.

Doctoral Programmes Office Administrator: Marleen Vanstockem
Tel: +44 (0) 121 414 3498
Email: m.h.l.vanstockem@bham.ac.uk

Research interests of staff

We welcome applications relating to the following research interests of academic supervisors.

Taxation

Tax compliance, personal tax policy, informal tax systems
Contact: Professor Andy Lymer

Social and institutional perspectives on taxation policy and practice
Contact: Professor Penny Tuck

Tax regulation
Contact: Dr Rodrigo Ormeno-Perez

Public sector accounting

Social and institutional perspectives on public sector finance and police finance
Contact: Professor Penny Tuck

Government accounting
Contact: Dr George Georgiou

Social and environmental accounting

Accounting for sustainable development, carbon accounting, biodiversity accounting, ecological accounts
Contact: Dr Tom Cuckston

CSR/sustainability reporting, integrated reporting
Contact: Dr Nick Rowbottom

Financial accounting and reporting

Market-based accounting research, corporate restructuring, performance measurement, financial analysts’ forecasts
Contact: Dr Mark Chun Mak

Accounting regulation, accounting theory, capital market-based accounting research
Contact: Dr George Georgiou

Narrative reporting, digital reporting standards/XBRL
Contact: Dr Nick Rowbottom

Contact

You can contact us on +44 (0)121 414 5005 

Got a question? Use our ask us anything  facility to get the answer you need.

Doctoral Programmes Office Administrator: Marleen Vanstockem
Tel: +44 (0) 121 414 3498
Email: m.h.l.vanstockem@bham.ac.uk

Employability

If I gain a postgraduate research degree from Birmingham Business School, what are my career prospects?

The University of Birmingham has recently been ranked 9th in the UK, and 55th in the world, for post-qualification employability in a global survey of universities commissioned by the International Herald Tribune.

Birmingham’s Business graduates are sought after by a wide range of financial, commercial and public sector employers. They can typically offer a wide range of skills including analytical & research, numeracy, communication, team working and political & commercial awareness.

For those entering employment after graduating, traditionally popular areas include banking, accountancy/professional services and financial services. Many of our programmes involve studying towards a professional qualification. Outside of these areas, options include teaching abroad and retail management. Many PhD graduates also go on to forge successful academic careers of their own in teaching and academic research.

What type of career assistance is available to doctoral researchers in Birmingham Business School?

The University of Birmingham has invested heavily in careers and employability support.  The Careers Team have been praised for enhanced developments within their team and for adopting a model of integrated employability and internship support; something that has been rolled out and implemented across all Schools and Colleges at the University.

Doctoral researchers at Birmingham Business School will benefit from this additional investment; the school  now has its own well qualified dedicated Careers Team to support students with employment opportunities, work placements, internships and how to succeed at interview. In addition, a range of career management, personal development and employer events are run each year by the Careers in Business Team to help you make the most of the opportunities available. 

The University also has dedicated careers advisors for International students who run workshops and networking opportunities with potential employers. These are especially popular with International postgraduate researchers.

Contact

You can contact us on +44 (0)121 414 5005 

Got a question? Use our ask us anything  facility to get the answer you need.

Doctoral Programmes Office Administrator: Marleen Vanstockem
Tel: +44 (0) 121 414 3498
Email: m.h.l.vanstockem@bham.ac.uk