Emphasis in Accounting Research

We are pleased to offer an Emphasis in Accounting Research. This emphasis is designed for students who wish to pursue a Ph.D. in Accounting. Students who pursue this Emphasis take at least 9 credits of qualifying courses. Three of these credits must include the following courses which are offered in the fall semester:

Introduction to Academic Research in Accounting

1 credit

Develops a framework for understanding scholarly research in accounting and will gain exposure to classic and current accounting research studies.

Data and Analysis in Accounting Research

1 credit

Develops fundamental empirical skills, such as the use of databases and regression analysis. Applications will include replication of a published accounting research study.

Design of Accounting Research Studies

1 credit

Applies the scientific method to accounting research questions by studying research designs used in scholarly accounting research and their effectiveness for causal inference. Applications will include addressing a research question using alternative designs.

Additional required course in the spring semester:

Current Research in Accounting

1 credit

Focuses on reading and discussing current academic research papers presented by William & Mary faculty and external accounting researchers. This course is open to any student interested in how research informs business practices and is well-suited for students considering careers in academia. Attendance at research presentations is required. Topics change each year so the course may be repeated once for credit.

The remaining additional credits may be selected from the following courses in the spring semester:

Contemporary Issues in Financial Reporting

3 credits

Expands and integrates knowledge of U.S. and international generally accepted accounting principles (GAAP) in a rigorous study of current financial reporting issues under discussion by regulators, standard-setters, and the broader accounting profession.

Data Analysis, Modeling & Simulation for Accounting

3 credits

Designed to introduce students to basic modeling, analysis and simulation techniques. Emphasis will be placed on problem identification and formulation, sensitivity analysis, and model construction. Tools such as MS Excel, Solver, Crystal Ball, and @Risk will be used to solve accounting-related business problems.

Probability | MATH 551

3 credits

Topics include: combinational analysis, discrete and continuous probability distributions and characteristics of distributions, sampling distributions.

Mathematical Statistics | MATH 552

3 credits

The mathematical theory of statistical inference. Possible topics include:

  • Maximum likelihood
  • Least squares
  • Linear models
  • Methods for estimation
  • Hypothesis testing

Other courses may be used to complete the emphasis with the consent of the department chair.