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Thread: Is it possible to apply to Org Behavior Ph.D. with a Marketing (CB) background

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    Is it possible to apply to Org Behavior Ph.D. with a Marketing (CB) background

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    Hi Everyone,

    I always find the discussions here quite productive and helpful. I am planning to apply to Ph.D. programs in Business Administration this application cycle for admission in Fall 2020. I have a Bachelor's Degree in Marketing from California State University, and an MBA from the same school. My graduate research focused on Consumer Behavior, specifically looking at the effect of personality factors in people's decision to participate or not in the Sharing Economy. But my thesis chair had his PhD in Org Behavior (I just clicked with him and decided to do my graduate thesis under his supervision, even though he wasn't technically in the Marketing department but in Management).

    Anyway, now that I have been out of school for 2+ years and have been running a non-profit as the principal officer and manage a team of 25, I have realized my primary interest lies, broadly speaking, in the psychological factors within the workplace and how they affect the company and the surrounding community (Micro and Macro OB, I suppose). I also have found that it's much easier for me to read and understand an Org Behavior Journal paper than a Consumer Behavior ones. I find myself genuinely lost at many methodology sections of CB papers, involving FMRI, etc.

    So, I am planning to apply to about 10-12 Org Behavior programs, and 8-9 CB programs (where I have research fit). But, I am wondering if schools would just disqualify my application based on a lack of academic research background in Org Behavior. A professor at an UC school, that I met recently, said that the schools may think that I am "confused," and may disqualify me, while others have said that the schools aren't really that concerned with the topics of previous research, as they are in seeing whether you know how to research. Would really appreciate your opinion and advice on this. Has anyone been in the same situation?

    Also, is OB supposed to be less mathematically challenging than a CB program?

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    Re: Is it possible to apply to Org Behavior Ph.D. with a Marketing (CB) background

    I too have similar issues. I did my MBA from IIT Kanpur in India and my concentration was more of marketing. It was because we did not have a major in Organisational Behavior. My work experience also has Marketing Research experience. Now I see that I am more comfortable and confident in Organisational behavior topics. I guess as long as you show you are very focussed on organisation behavior that should be fine. You should not give them an impression that you are choosing it because it needs less math.

    And we will have to do our course work anyway. So we would be comfortable with math once we complete those courses.

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