Below please find the 2013-2014 program requirements for a DBA in Technology & Operations Management. Students in TOM generally complete the program in four to five years.

Prerequisite Coursework

 

Introduction to Probability and Statistics: All doctoral students enrolled in the TOM DBA program are required to have completed one undergraduate or graduate course in introductory probability and statistics. If this requirement has not been fulfilled prior to matriculation, then an equivalent course will be required in the first term of the student's doctoral program.

Courses meeting this requirement include:
Quantitative Analysis and Empirical Methods (HKS API-201a)

Doctoral Coursework

A minimum of 13 semester courses at doctoral level, plus unit seminars are required. Each semester students will consult with the Technology and Operations Management DBA faculty coordinator and/or advisor to receive approval of their course selections. Pre-approval by the TOM DBA faculty coordinator is required if a student wishes to fulfill these requirements with alternative courses.

 
Foundational Courses (4 courses)
 
  • Perspectives in Management Research: This one semester course exposes students to cutting edge research across a spectrum of management functions and demonstrates how various types of research contribute to important management questions. Students are introduced to a range of vibrant scholars and are encouraged to foster a research community across the first year cohort.
     
    • Perspectives in Management Research (HBS 4008)
     
  • Microeconomics Theory: A comprehensive two semester sequence on economic theory.
     
    • Microeconomic Theory I (HBS 4010/Economics 2020a)
    • Microeconomic Theory II (HBS 4011/Economics 2020b)
     
  • Research Development Course: This year long course provides a structured research experience in which students can work on both the substance of a project and learn about the process of research. The course also provides a continual stimulus to completing a required second-year paper.
     
    • Research Development Course (HBS 4006)
 
Research Methods Courses (4 courses)
 

    Students must take one course from each of the following four categories.

    Introductory Applied Econometrics: One introductory course in applied econometrics is required. Students who have already taken an introductory applied econometrics course should substitute a more advanced course to fulfill this requirement.
     
    Courses that fulfill this requirement include:
    • Introduction to Econometrics (Econ 1123)
    • Introduction to Quantitative Methods (Gov 2000); (usually followed by Gov 2001)
    • Advanced Quantitative Methods I: Statistics (HKS API-209); (usually followed by HKS API-210)
     
    Intermediate Applied Econometrics: One intermediate course in applied econometrics is required. A more advanced level course may be taken with faculty approval.
     
    Courses that fulfill this requirement include:
    • Advanced Quantitative Research Methodology (Gov 2001)
    • Advanced Quantitative Methods II: Econometric Models (HKS API-210)
    • Topics in Applied Econometrics (MIT 14.387)
    • Methods of Quantitative Sociological Research (Soc 203a)
     
    Econometrics for business: This course focuses on econometrics challenges common to business researchers and aims to strengthen training in empirical methods. Students should enroll only after completing introductory and intermediate econometrics courses.
    Boston Univ. SI1915. Causal Inference for Strategy Research
     

    Additional Research Methods: One additional research methods course is required from the following list of courses.
     
    Applied Econometrics:
    • New Econometric Models (MIT 14.386)
     
    Experimental Methods:
    • Field Experiments (HBS 4430/Econ 2041)
    • Design of Experiments (STAT 140)
    • Experimental Economics (HBS 4160/Econ 2040)
     
    Qualitative Methods:
    • Design of Field Research Methods (HBS 4070)
     
    Survey Methods:
    • Design and Analysis of Sample Surveys (STAT 160)
     
    Econometrics Theory:
    • Introduction to Applied Econometrics (Econ 2120); (Econ 2110 may be required as a prerequisite course)
    • Econometrics Methods (Econ 2140)

    • Other courses that fulfill this requirement:
      Statistical Methods for Evaluating Causal Effects (Econ 1127); Program Evaluation: Estimating Program Effectiveness with Empirical Analysis (HKS API-208); Advanced Quantitative Research Methodology (Gov 2001); Sociological Research Design (Soc 205)
Additional Courses (5 courses)

Technology and Operations Management students are required to take five additional doctoral courses.

Operations-track students are required to complete:
  • Empirical Technology and Operations Management (HBS 4482)
  • Theory of Operations Management (HBS 4480)
  • Advanced Optimization (HBS 4460/AM 221)
  • Stochastic Modeling (HBS 4465)
  • One additional doctoral elective courses.

Innovation-track students are required to complete:
  • Empirical Techonology and Operations Management (HBS 4482)
  • At least one of the following electives:
  • Empirical Studies of Innovation and Digitization (HBS 4561)
  • Management of Technological Innovation (HBS 4540)
  • Innovation and Organizations (HBS 4825)
  • Sociological and Organizational Perspectives in Entrepreneurship Research (HBS 4355)
  • Three doctoral elective courses, two of which must be in a single discipline (e.g. economics or sociology)
 
Business Education for Scholars & Teachers (3 courses offered in January term)
  • Business Education for Scholars and Teachers – Organizations: This three-week, full day immersion course introduces students to basic functions an operating organization, including accounting and management, marketing, management, finance, and operations. 
  • Business Education for Scholars and Teachers – Markets: This two-week course introduces students to how operating organizations deal with external markets, such as having a strategy, understanding capital markets, and thinking broadly about markets from a multidimensional viewpoint, through case-based classes at HBS and field work.
  • Business Education for Scholars and Teachers – Teach (BEST/Teach): This one-week course introduces students to curriculum development, module development, presentation skills, and teaching methods.
MBA Course (recommended 1 course)

It is recommended that all students complete one case-based HBS MBA course.

Research Seminars

Students are required to attend and participate in seminars throughout their program.

TOM Unit Seminars. TOM students are expected to attend this weekly seminar to gain exposure to cutting-edge research conducted by faculty at other business schools and by TOM faculty, and to observe faculty recruiting seminars (job talks).

DBA Seminar for Technology and Operations Management (HBS 4840). TOM students are required, starting in their third year, to enroll and actively participate in this weekly seminar each semester it is offered. Students present work in progress and receive feedback from their colleagues and a faculty member. This seminar also develops presentation skills, critical thinking, and enduring relationships among students across all stages of the TOM DBA program. First and second year TOM students are encouraged to enroll.

Operations Management Reading Group (HBS 4842). Operations-track TOM students are required to enroll and actively participate in this weekly seminar at least once during their first or second year. This seminar exposes students to leading research on operations management. Many students participate in this seminar in several years.

Good Academic Standing

To remain in good academic standing, DBA students are expected to maintain a B+ grade point average and complete each doctoral milestone by the date provided.

Teaching

Students are required to complete a teaching engagement of one full academic term that includes at least 8 hours, or 3 class sessions, of front-of-class teaching experience and at least 16 hours of teaching preparation time.

Second Year Paper

Students are required to complete and present a publishable-quality paper by the end of their second year. Students are responsible for organizing a committee in consultation with their primary advisor, who will approve the paper. To be approved, the paper must show the student's capability to produce publishable-quality research.

Special Field Exam

At the end of the second year, all students are required to pass the Special Field Exam, administered by their Special Field Exam Committee. For Operations Management-track students, the field exam will focus on empirical and modeling methods. For Innovation-track students, the field exam will focus on empirical methods and classical and special-field literatures.  

Dissertation Proposal

By the end of their third year, all students are required to obtain approval of their dissertation proposal by their Dissertation Proposal Committee.

Dissertation Committee Meeting

All students are required to hold a meeting with their Dissertation Committee by May of their 4th year to discuss a clear path for the student to successfully defend their dissertation and provide feedback and advice on the job market process.

Dissertation

Students are required to write a dissertation, which typically takes the form of three publishable papers, to the satisfaction of their Dissertation Committee. The dissertation defense is oral and open to the public. Students are expected to defend their dissertation no later than April of their 5th year.

Sample Course Schedule

Operations Track

TERM 1

TERM 3

 

 

Microeconomics I

Intermediate Applied Econometrics

Introductory Applied Econometrics

Additional Research Methods Course

Basic Applied Probability 

Research Methods Elective

TOM Unit Seminar

Operations Management Reading Group Seminar

 

Research Development Course

 

TOM Unit Seminar

 

 

January YR 1

January YR 2

BEST Organizations

BEST Markets

TERM 2 

TERM 4

 

 

Microeconomics II

Research Methods Elective

Advanced Optimization

Stochastic Modeling

Empirical Technology and Operations Management

Theory of Operations Management

Perspectives in Management Research

Research Development Course

DBA TOM Seminar

DBA TOM Seminar

TOM Unit Seminar

TOM Unit Seminar

Summer YR 1

Plan: Field Research Requirement

Plan: Second Year Paper

Summer YR 2

Second Year Paper due

Special Field Exam 

YR 3 BEST Teach (January term), and Teaching Requirement (TERM 5 or 6)

Innovation Track

TERM 1

TERM 3

 

 

Microeconomics I

Macro Topics in OB

Introductory Applied Econometrics

Research Development Course

Basic Applied Probability 

TOM Unit Seminar

Research Methods elective

TOM Unit Seminar

 

NBER Productivity Seminar

 

 

 

 

January YR 1

January YR 2

BEST Organizations

 

BEST Markets

TERM 2

TERM 4

 

 

Microeconomics II

Innovation and Organizations

Empirical Technology and Operations Management

Elective Doctoral Course

Intermediate Applied Econometrics 

Research Development Course

Perspectives in Management Research

DBA TOM Seminar

DBA TOM Seminar

TOM Unit Seminar

TOM Unit Seminar

NBER Productivity Seminar

NBER Productivity Seminar

 

 

Summer YR 1

Plan: Field Research Requirement

Plan: Second Year Paper

Summer YR 2

Second Year Paper due

Special Field Exam 

YR 3 BEST Teach (January term), and Teaching Requirement (TERM 5 or 6)