Ph.D. Minor Guidelines

For non-business doctoral students (10-12 credits required)

UW-Madison doctoral students from departments outside of the Wisconsin School of Business should follow these guidelines for a minor involving business course work.

Option A minor in business: Because the Wisconsin School of Business (WSOB) is considered a department of the Graduate School of the University of Wisconsin-Madison, WSOB sub-departmental minors are not formally recognized. All Option A minors earned in the WSOB are recorded as “business.” However, there are two types of Option A business minors offered.

(1) Minors may be done within one WSOB department (only in these major areas: Accounting, Finance, Management and Human Resources, Marketing, Operations and Information Management, Real Estate and Urban Land Economics, and Risk Management). Official records will still reflect only the term “business” for the reason stated above. All courses/credits must be graded (A-F).

For this type of minor, where all course work is taken in one WSOB department, the student should meet with the designated departmental representative, who will approve the necessary course work to be taken within that department (or an additional related department, if appropriate). A list of these faculty members is available on the WSOB Ph.D. website or through the Ph.D. Programs Office in 3115 Grainger Hall. You must have with you a copy of the Minor Agreement Form, also available from 3115 Grainger Hall. The appropriate departmental representative will sign this agreement form to indicate approval of the course(s) shown for that field of study. Coursework should be taken only after receiving written approval from the designated faculty member for the department. You must file copy of this agreement form with the Ph.D. Programs Office in 3115 Grainger. It is also strongly recommended that you have a copy of this agreement placed in your permanent file in your home (major) department.

(2) A general business minor may also be pursued under Option A. This type of minor is made up of coursework from a number of departments (major fields) within the WSOB. (Remember: The WSOB is considered to be only one department by the Graduate School). 

For this type of minor, the student is advised to meet with his or her major advisor to determine the business subjects considered most relevant to the student’s program and/or research. After identifying those subject areas (selected from those WSOB departments that offer a Ph.D. major), the student should consult with the designated faculty representative in each of the subject areas where coursework is being considered. A list of these faculty members is available on the WSOB Ph.D. website or through the Ph.D. Programs Office in 3115 Grainger Hall. You must have with you a copy of the Minor Agreement Form, also available from 3115 Grainger Hall. Each appropriate WSOB departmental representative will review the proposed course(s) in their respective department and will sign their approval or suggest appropriate alternatives. The student should then submit his/her completed Minor Agreement Form to the Ph.D. Programs Office (3115 Grainger Hall) after approval has been obtained for all of the proposed coursework from the respective faculty members. The proposal will then be forwarded to the WSOB Ph.D. Programs Committee for final approval. Coursework should be taken only after receiving written approval from the Ph.D. Programs Committee of the WSOB. A copy of the approved agreement form will be kept in the Ph.D. Programs Office. It is also strongly recommended that you have a copy of this agreement placed in your permanent file in your home (major) department.

Option B minor: There is no Option B minor available in business, because Option B minors require coursework from two or more departments. The Graduate School considers the WSOB to be one department. All Option B minors are to be approved by the student’s doctoral advisor in the home (major) department. Option B minors for non-business Ph.D. students do not require any approval from the WSOB, even if coursework in business is included. Requirements are described in the Graduate School catalog or on the Graduate School website.

Download the form.
(PhD Minor Form Non Business.pdf)

If you have further questions about the WSOB minor options, please contact the Ph.D. coordinator at phd@bus.wisc.edu.