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Doctor of Business Administration (DBA)

College of Business and Management
Graduate degree / Doctor of Business Administration

About The Program

The Doctorate of Business Administration (DBA) is an innovative doctoral program whose curriculum and research requirements focus on applied management practice. An internationally recognized alternative to a PhD program, the DBA enhances the knowledge and skills of experienced business practitioners and higher education faculty to prepare them for demanding positions in management, post-secondary teaching, and consulting. The Metro State DBA Doctorate of Business Administration program provides a rare opportunity for professionals to earn a high quality, applied doctoral degree on a part-time basis.

The Doctorate of Business Administration program prepares students to be successful, ethical business leaders in complex and changing organizations. It will help you develop the advanced skills and depth of understanding needed to assume demanding positions in business management, higher education teaching, and management consulting. The program also:

Offers a part-time scheduling, approved by the Higher Learning Commission, that matches your work schedule

  • Engages you in a Web-enhanced model in which you enroll in one to two courses per semester and attend classes on alternate Saturdays with web exercises in between classes
  • Brings you into a community of business professionals who share your professional interests and career goals
  • Offers an outstanding cohort program at an extraordinary value. Allows you to conduct an applied research project, advised by experienced faculty, that will bring up-to-date theory to bear on real issues of importance to managers and organizations
  • Allows you to develop advanced financial and managerial skills through applied, rigorous seminars, and enhances your ability to develop and execute business strategies
  • Provides you with the opportunity to complete coursework in a condensed two-year timeframe, leaving more time for self-paced research pursuits

Student outcomes

Candidates who complete the Doctorate of Business Administration program will be able to:

Evaluate and analyze complex research and practice-based information valuable to business practitioners

  • Design effective problem-solving strategies for organizations, clients, or students
  • Construct and execute complex research based on practically significant problems

Ready to start your doctorate?

Careers come with a lot of challenges. Give yourself an edge with Metro State’s DBA Doctorate of Business Administration program. Enhance your knowledge and skills to become a leader in business, post-secondary teaching, consulting, or another exciting career field at an innovative university that’s regarded for its in-demand, student-centered programs.

How to enroll

Program eligibility requirements

We welcome all applications and encourage interested applicants to reach out to the DBA Director Jun Li at jun.li@metrostate.edu or graduate.studies@metrostate.edu for information.

All applications are reviewed by the College of Business and Management DBA Admissions Committee. Admission criteria include:

  • An earned MBA or management-related master's degree.
  • Course credits and professional experience in areas related to business and/or business administration. Students must have 20 credits of master’s level coursework in the following areas: a) organizational behavior, b) management information systems, c) finance, d) organizational strategy, e) accounting, f) economics, g) marketing, h) operations management, i) project management, j) research methods, and/or k) statistics.
  • Five years of professional experience.
  • Completion of DBA-level MBA Math or GMAT/GRE.
  • Professional and academic references.
  • Admissions and research essays.

If you intend to apply for the program and wish to include coursework from outside of the following areas listed in a) through k) above, please include a rationale that helps to explain the connection between the DBA program and the coursework in question. Provide a rationale to explain how the coursework is applicable to the 20-credit admissions requirement and/or DBA program more generally. Consider including such things as course syllabi, course descriptions, or other material evidence that would help to strengthen your argument.

  • The ideal applicant will have earned at least a 3.5 grade-point average.
  • If the applicant is submitting GMAT or GRE scores, the ideal applicant will have a score above the 51st percentile.

Students seeking admission to the DBA program may complete required prerequisite courses in the Metropolitan State College of Business and Management without being admitted to a College of Business and Management graduate program if they meet the following criteria:

  • Have earned an MBA or management-related master's degree.
  • Achieved a 3.0 GPA in their master's degree program.
  • Have completed at least five years of professional work.
  • Indicate in writing an intent to apply for the DBA program in a specific year.

Application instructions

Metro State University is participating in the common application for graduate programs (BusinessCAS). Applications are only accepted via the CAS website.

CAS steps

  1. Select the term for which you are seeking admission (below), and navigate to the CAS website. Open applications include:
  2. Create or log in to your account and select the Doctor of Business Administration (DBA) program.
  3. Carefully review all instructions and complete all four sections of the application.

Specific application requirements for individual programs can be found on each program page in CAS. Carefully read the instructions that appear throughout the application pages. You can only submit your application once. If you need to update information you have submitted, please notify graduate.studies@metrostate.edu

Application fee

A nonrefundable $58 fee is required for each application.
Applications will not be processed until this fee is received.

Active-duty military, veterans, and Metro State alumni can receive an application fee waiver. Contact graduate.studies@metrostate.edu.

Courses and Requirements

SKIP TO COURSE REQUIREMENTS

The DBA curriculum requires 52 doctoral credits beyond an MBA (or an equivalent management-related master's degree program). Prerequisite courses (minimum of two credits each) must have been completed before the start of the DBA program, with at least a grade of B, and may include the following:

  • 20 credits of master’s level coursework in the following areas: a) organizational behavior, b) management information systems, c) finance, d) organizational strategy, e) accounting, f) economics, g) marketing, h) operations management, i) project management, j) research methods, and/or k) statistics.
  • Five years of professional experience.

Time to Completion: Students have seven years to complete all graduation requirements from enrollment in the first semester of DBA courses.

Requirements (52 credits)

+ Phase 1 (40 credits)

This course examines the history of the development of management theory and practice and its relationship to significant issues and challenges of today's managers. The works of both classical and contemporary management theorists will be analyzed, with students developing and defending models of management practice for their use in business organizations.

Full course description for Doctoral Seminar in the Development of Management Thought

DBA 708 Advanced Qualitative Methodology is an extension of DBA 705 Introduction to Research Inquiry, and covers qualitative research methodologies at a deeper level. In this course students will gain practical experience by applying the procedures and techniques of various research methodologies, using both instructor-provided and student-generated data. Students will learn qualitative methodological techniques that require the collection, and analysis of data and reporting of results for qualitative studies.

Full course description for Advanced Qualitative Methodology

DBA 709 Advanced Quantitative Methodologies is an extension of DBA 708. In this course, students will gain practical research experience by applying varying advanced quantitative methodologies using student-generated data. Students will be responsible for the design, data collection, statistical analysis, and reporting of results of their self-designed quantitative study. Students will practice such methodological processes as survey design and validation, experimental design, multilevel modeling techniques, and hypothesis testing. This course will be conducted in a seminar format in which students are actively involved with developing and presenting course content.

Full course description for Advanced Quantitative Research Methodologies

In this course, students design the research proposal for their applied doctoral research project. The proposal is an expansion of the research prospectus developed in DBA 705 Foundations of research. The proposal consists of the identification and definition of the research problem, the literature on the problem of study, and a description of the specific research methodology to be used in the research project.

Full course description for Applied Research Projects Design

During phase 1 of the Doctor of Business Administration (DBA) program, 40 credits of coursework must be completed. Curriculum includes each of the courses noted above. In addition, all DBA students are required to complete the DBA Marketing Research course (4 credits). This is a new course and will be offered Spring semester 2026.

+ Phase 2 (12 credits)

During phase 2, students must successfully complete all portions of a written comprehensive examination. Also in this phase, an applied research project and resulting dissertation must be completed. Successful oral defense of the research project/dissertation project, including its methodology and findings, is required.