What Can You Do With a PhD in Business Administration?

Oct 24, 2018

A business professional may seek a PhD in Business Administration as preparation for teaching at a college or university. Earning this degree also provides the skills needed to oversee a college or school, and graduates could also use their knowledge to analyze political or economic trends.

Careers Available for PhD in Business Administration Graduates

Job Title Median Salary (2017)* Job Growth (2016-2026)*
Postsecondary Business Teacher $80,300 18%
College President $92,360 (education administrators, postsecondary) 10% (education administrators, postsecondary)
School Superintendent $94,390 (education administrators, elementary and secondary school) 5% (education administrators, elementary and secondary school)
Economist $102,490 6%
Political Scientist $115,110 3%

Source: *U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics

Examples of Careers Available for PhD in Business Administration Graduates

Postsecondary Business Teacher

A PhD in Business Administration will definitely open doors of opportunity in academia. Postsecondary teachers at major colleges and universities are required to have a doctorate degree in their area or specialty. Someone with a PhD in Business Administration will be qualified to teach a number of business courses, but can also devote a large amount of time to research. Professors at larger schools often spend a majority of their time performing research, while also supervising teaching assistants who teach their classes.

College President

College presidents act as chief executive officers or CEOs of colleges and universities. These individuals direct all organizational activities and hire upper-management staff that oversee various departments to assure the school runs smoothly. College presidents typically have a master's degree, but a doctorate is actually preferred by many schools. Someone with a PhD in Business Administration would be skilled in handling the budgetary side of a college president's responsibilities, as well.

School Superintendent

Like a college president, a school superintendent handles the affairs of an educational institution. He or she serves as the top executive for a school district and works closely with the school board. A master's degree is required of this position, but a PhD or post-master's certificate is often preferred. Superintendents spend their time implementing the ideas of the school board, overseeing the principals in the district, and making decisions regarding spending and facilities.


Economists look at economic trends and make forecasts that help businesses, government organizations, and policy-makers engage in strategic planning and make sound financial decisions. Economists study information related to inflation and interest rates and may specialize in specific areas like agriculture or energy. They use software for data analysis and compile and write reports that will be used by their clients and stakeholders. This job requires a master's degree or PhD.

Political Scientist

A political scientist studies the political process and factors that shape politics. They analyze trends, teach, and advise politicians, businesses, and government organizations. Political scientists communicate their findings to their clients, stakeholders, and the general public. Their findings may shape campaign strategies and policy decisions. A master's degree or PhD in political science or a related field, like business administration, is necessary for this role.

An individual with a PhD in Business Administration can use their expertise to train the next generation of business students. There are additional opportunities to put his or her skills to work in private and public organizations, like school leadership and analysis of economics or politics.

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