Survive then thrive: Determinants of success in the economics Ph.D. program

Wayne A. Grove, Donald H. Dutkowsky, Andrew Grodner

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

13 Scopus citations


This study investigates the completion of the Ph.D. in economics. We use ex ante information, based upon reviewing individual applications from former doctoral students. Students need different skills to succeed at each distinct stage of the doctoral program. Significant determinants for passing the comprehensive exams include Graduate Record Exam (GRE) verbal and quantitative scores, a Masters degree, and prior focus on economics. By contrast, research motivation and math preparation play significant roles in completing the dissertation. GRE scores become insignificant for completion in the generalized ordered logit estimates, which emphasize the sequential nature of the Economics Ph.D. program. (JEL I210)

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)864-871
Number of pages8
JournalEconomic Inquiry
Issue number4
StatePublished - Oct 2007

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • General Business, Management and Accounting
  • Economics and Econometrics


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