Doctor of Business Administration



48 credit hours

Program Length

as few as 27 months


Regionally Accredited by SACSCOC

Differentiate Yourself as a Business Expert with a Doctor of Business Administration 

Columbia International University’s Doctor of Business Administration (DBA) degree is a comprehensive program designed for business professionals who seek to differentiate themselves in the global marketplace. The program combines practical experience with academic learning to provide you with a solid foundation in business theory and real-world application. At Columbia International University (CIU), the DBA program is specifically developed to integrate an ethical worldview and scholarly pursuits into the curriculum and is offered entirely online, allowing students to pursue their studies from anywhere in the world while continuing to work in their current roles. With a completion time of just 27 months, the program is ideal for professionals who want to take their career to the next level without sacrificing their current commitments. A unique feature of the CIU’s Doctor of Business Administration is the integration of the applied doctoral project experience (ADPE) into the core curriculum. This means that students begin their applied doctoral project early on in the program, allowing them to immediately apply the knowledge and skills they gain in the classroom to real-world business challenges. Students are assigned a mentor who serves as the Chair of the Applied Doctoral Project Experience Committee, providing guidance and support throughout the program. Students in the CIU Doctor of Business Administration program also benefit from a range of courses that cover topics such as leadership, strategic planning and organizational behavior. These courses are designed to help students develop the critical thinking, problem-solving and communication skills necessary to succeed as business leaders in today’s global marketplace. 

Why Choose Columbia International University?

At Columbia International University, our mission is to provide students with a transformative education that integrates truth and rigorous academic learning. Our strong core values are the foundation of everything we do, and we strive to instill these values in our students through every aspect of their learning experience. 

One of the key ways we deliver on this mission is through our CIU Global online program. This program is designed to provide students with a solid online education that is both flexible and rigorous. It is delivered through a robust Learning Management System that is easy to use and supported by a team of dedicated professionals who are committed to meeting the unique needs of each learner. 

At CIU Global, we believe that education is not just about acquiring knowledge, but also about transforming lives. That’s why we integrate the principles of our core values into every aspect of our program. Our faculty members are experienced professionals who are committed to helping students succeed both academically and personally. They are passionate about teaching and are dedicated to ensuring that each student has the support they need to thrive in their studies. 

Whether you are a busy professional looking to advance your career or a recent high school graduate just starting out, CIU Global is the perfect choice for anyone who is seeking a high-quality, transformative education. We invite you to explore our programs and see for yourself what sets CIU Global apart from other colleges and universities. 

Overall Benefits of the Degree

Earning a Doctor of Business Administration degree is a wise investment for business professionals looking to advance their career and personal growth. A Doctor of Business Administration degree program provides advanced coursework in various aspects of business management, including leadership, finance, strategic planning and organizational behavior. This advanced knowledge and skill set can be valuable when seeking career advancement opportunities or when starting a business. 

Earning a DBA degree can also increase your earning potential. According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, top executives in the United States earn a median annual salary of over $100,000, and those with a doctoral degree may earn even more. The program also provides an opportunity to build a strong professional network. During the program, students interact with other business professionals and faculty members, allowing them to expand their professional network. This can be particularly valuable for career growth opportunities or for connecting with like-minded professionals. 

Pursuing a Doctor of Business Administration degree requires a significant amount of dedication, discipline and hard work. However, completing the program can provide a great sense of personal achievement and professional growth. The skills and knowledge gained from the program can also be applied to personal and professional life, leading to overall personal development and success. 

In today’s highly competitive job market, having a Doctor of Business Administration degree can provide a competitive advantage. Employers view a DBA degree as a sign of commitment, dedication and expertise in the field of business management, making candidates more attractive for higher-level positions. This advantage can help secure high paying positions and promotions within the organization. 

What Will I Study?

  • BUS 9100 DBA Launch and Current Topics

    The DBA Launch and Current Topics course provides an opportunity for cohort members to connect and collaborate. Learners discover university resources, gain a beginning knowledge of the applied research process, use scholarly writing, and apply APA formatting. Using business sources in the fields of leadership, change management, marketing, human resource management, strategy and innovation, supply chain management, financial management, and business law, learners will evaluate current topics by synthesizing information from academic and popular business sources.

    3.00 credit hours
  • BUS 9110 Applied/Real World Research

    The Doctor of Business Administration project is an applied research project and is designed to solve a real business problem, known problem, or potential opportunity that can be exploited and, in all cases, seeks to improve business practice. This course equips learners with the research tools required to design and conduct a doctoral applied research project. The course will compare research processes and learners will identify, select, and support a research topic for further investigation. Doctoral learners will be prepared to select a topic, review academic and business sources, design a study using qualitative or quantitative research, collect data, analyze, and interpret data, and report and evaluate the research project.

    3.00 credit hours
  • BUS 9200 Executive Leadership Development

    The executive leadership development course focuses on emerging trends in leadership studies including steward, ethical, and authentic leadership practice. Learners apply modern leadership theories in an organizational context. Doctoral learners will synthesize leadership development from a personal, team, and organizational leadership perspective and will develop a personal mission statement and leadership growth plan by analyzing and evaluating leadership practices. Learners relate their understanding of leadership influence by evaluating leadership practice from a real-world perspective.

    3.00 credit hours
  • BUS 9400 Business Law

    Businesses have legal, social, and ethical responsibilities. When businesses are global, these aspects are further given international law. Doctoral learners will interpret business law using real-world cases and from a perspective of a business life cycle including legal requirements for starting, running, and closing a business. Learners will also compare business law from the perspective of a corporation, appraise bankruptcy, and assess dispute resolution. Learners will apply learning through business law case interpretation and analyze business law practices.

    3.00 credit hours
  • BUS 9500 Business Analytics

    Organizational leaders address contemporary business issues in an ambiguous global economy of rapid change, technological advances, and uncertainty. Executive leaders leverage business analytics to manage daily operations, evaluate strategic objectives, and to make sound decisions driven by informative data. Business analytics has evolved using machine learning and artificial intelligence to help solve business problems involving structure and unstructured data. Doctoral learners will understand various data sets and business analytical tools available which will encompass critical thinking and decision-making. Learners will research, analyze, and evaluate business analytics and decision making to solve a business problem.

    3.00 credit hours
  • BUS 9600 Human Resource Management

    Through this course in human resources management learners will investigate key issues and contemporary research topics in the global workforce using real case studies. Doctoral learners will increase knowledge through research in the field of strategic human resource management including the strategic allocation of human assets, workforce demographics and planning, performance metrics, and analytics. Learners interpret concepts of diversity, organizational behavior, corporate social responsibility, hybrid and remote work, and ethical behavior, and gain insight on talent development and workforce sustainability. Learners will assess HR best practices by synthesizing information from academic and business sources.

    3.00 credit hours
  • BUS 9700 Entrepreneurship: Launching New Ventures and Managing Change

    The entrepreneurship course helps doctoral learners appraise critical-thinking processes and problem-solving needed to launch new ventures and manage change in a global marketplace. Entrepreneurial processes will be analyzed through real-world case studies and business sources starting from ideation to launch. Learners will evaluate business strategy, growth plans, and change-management from the lens of entrepreneurialism. Doctoral leaners will analyze and evaluate business practices using a broad knowledge of business functions, strategies, and analytics.

    3.00 credit hours
  • BUS 9710 Marketing

    This course will help doctoral learners gain an understanding of research in the field of marketing through an exploration of contemporary theories. Course concepts include complex marketing activities that promote products, brands, and services in an ever-evolving global marketplace of changing personas. Marketing study will include the use of resources, research, analysis, psychology, advertising, delivery, digital marketplaces, and buying and selling B2B and to direct consumers. Learners will analyze real-world cases using popular and scholarly research related to an industry/and or interest area and a broad knowledge of marketing functions and strategies

    3.00 credit hours
  • BUS 9720 Strategy and Innovation

    Strategy covers advanced themes such as a situation assessment, ideation, formulation, development, and implementation. Doctoral learners will analyze market forces, competitive landscapes, customer changes/experiences, and internal company business issues to help frame effective strategies and policies. Real world case study examples help doctoral learners gain insight on market changes, value propositions, and opportunities. Learners will learn the framework for developing strategy, how to identify a bad strategy, and gain an appreciation of good strategy for sustainability. Learners will evaluate strategic plans, retooling, launching new innovative processes, and demonstrate an understanding of the rapid pace of innovation, strategic management, change, and best practice.

    3.00 credit hours
  • BUS 9730 Supply Chain Management

    Virtually all business involved a supply chain whether it is goods, funds, and/or information. The efficiency of a supply chain, or not, directly impacts the performance of a business. Doctoral learners will study real world examples of efficient and inefficient supply chains and the impact on businesses. Key concepts to be studied will include participants supply chain, various software platforms, roles, and responsibilities of supply chain providers to end consumers, and key business challenges facing supply chains moving forward. Doctoral learners will analyze a business problem and leverage multiple sources to offer recommendations from a logistics perspective for supply chain improvements.

    3.00 credit hours
  • BUS 9740 Decision Making: Finance Management

    Corporate sustainability relies on sound decision making and financial management. Learners will create, assess, and summarize financials using decision marking processes. Doctoral learners will evaluate decision making models and analyze financial health, profitability, and organizational performance using financial decision-making tools such as budgets, profit/loss, cash flow, capital, risk assessment, and short- and long-term financial planning.

    3.00 credit hours
  • BUS 9900 Applied Doctoral Project Experience - Introduction/Problem/Opportunity

    In this course, learners will create an introduction to the project along with a problem/opportunity statement. Doctoral learners will compare potential problem and opportunity scenarios and choose a research approach and the problem/opportunity statement will guide the research project. The problem statement will be clear, concise, and practical. The doctoral learner will complete the first draft of the dissertation proposal by creating research that addresses practical business problems or opportunity. Upon the completion of this course, the learner will be partnered with a mentor for the remainder of the ADPE.

    2.00 credit hours
  • BUS 9901 Applied Doctoral Project Experience - Literature Review

    In this course, the learner will craft the literature review using contemporary research and scholarly literature through a synthesis of academic and business sources. The doctoral candidate works in collaboration with the mentor to review and revise the literature review.

    3.00 credit hours
  • BUS 9903 Applied Doctoral Project Experience - Project Launch/Data Collection

    In this course, learners will prepare and submit an Institutional Review Board (IRB) application. When approval is received, learners will conduct research to address the business problem or opportunity. In this course, candidates will initiate, conduct, and complete the research project. Learners will then complete a draft of the final two chapters of project. The doctoral candidate will collaborate with the mentor and methodologist to review and revise the data collection.

    3.00 credit hours
  • BUS 9904 Applied Doctoral Project Experience - Solution/Recommendations

    In this course, candidates will complete the writing of the doctoral dissertations by interpreting the data and will conclude the project. Learners will work with a mentor, methodologist, and stylist to review and revise the final project and prepare for the final defense.

    2.00 credit hours
For a comprehensive list of courses related to this program visit the Academic Catalog.

Admission Requirements

  • Online application
  • Official transcripts for highest earned graduate degree
    • A minimum 2.5 GPA for the most recent degree obtained
  • Academic writing sample (Master’s thesis or graduate research paper)
  • Graduate Level Degree: Provide a transcript from an accredited college/university demonstrating the attainment of a graduate level degree include a Master’s in Business Administration or Master Degree in a business specialty (finance, management, accounting, etc.), or Master Degree as approved. Minimum cumulative GPA of 2.5 or higher. Please note, no transfer credit will be accepted.
  • CV or Resume that demonstrates minimum 3 years of business experience at any level.

Accreditation and Accolades

SACSCOC (The Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges)

Career Path Opportunities:

  • Chief Executive Officer (CEO): A DBA degree can qualify you for executive leadership positions, including CEO or other top-level positions. 
  • Management Consultant: DBA degree holders can work as management consultants, helping businesses solve problems and improve their operations. 
  • Professor or Researcher: With a DBA degree, you can teach at the university level or work as a researcher in academia or private industry. 
  • Financial Manager: A DBA degree can qualify you to work as a financial manager, overseeing budgets, investments and other financial operations for an organization. 
  • Marketing Manager: DBA degree holders can work as marketing managers, developing and executing marketing strategies and campaigns for organizations. 
  • Operations Manager: DBA degree holders can work as operations managers, overseeing day-to-day operations and ensuring efficiency and productivity. 
  • Entrepreneur: With a DBA degree, you can start your own business or work as a consultant to help others start and grow their businesses. 
  • Non-profit Executive: A DBA degree can qualify you to work in non-profit organizations as an executive director, overseeing fundraising, operations and other areas. 

Top FAQs

What is the curriculum like for the Doctor of Business Administration program, and what kind of courses will I take?

The curriculum for the Doctor of Business Administration program is designed to provide students with a strong foundation in business theory and real-world application. Students take courses in a variety of areas, including leadership, organizational behavior, marketing, finance and strategic planning. The program also includes an applied doctoral project experience, which allows students to apply their knowledge and skills to real-world business challenges.

Can I complete the Doctor of Business Administration program entirely online, or are there any in-person requirements?

The Doctor of Business Administration program at Columbia International University is entirely online, allowing students to complete their coursework from anywhere in the world. There are no in-person requirements for the program, making it a flexible and convenient option for busy professionals.

How long does the program typically take to complete, and can I complete it on a part-time or full-time basis?

The DBA program at CIU can be completed in as little as 27 months, depending on whether you choose to study on a part-time or full-time basis. The program is designed to be flexible and accommodate the needs of working professionals, allowing you to complete the program at your own pace.

What kind of career opportunities can I expect with a DBA degree, and what kind of salary can I expect to earn?

With a Doctor of Business Administration degree, you can expect to have access to a wide range of career opportunities in various industries, including business, finance, marketing, education and more. The earning potential with a DBA degree is also high, with top executives in the United States earning a median annual salary of over $100,000.

What kind of support will I receive during the program, including access to professors, career services and other resources?

Students in the DBA program at CIU receive a high level of support throughout their studies. This includes access to experienced faculty membersand a range of other resources to help them succeed in the program and beyond.

What are the admission requirements for the Doctor of Business Administration program, and what kind of previous education or work experience is necessary?

To be considered for admission to the DBA program, you must hold a master’s degree in business or a related field and have at least five years of professional work experience. You must also submit transcripts, letters of recommendation and a statement of purpose as part of the application process.

What kind of learning resources and tools will I have access to during the program, such as online libraries, databases and other research materials?

Students in the Doctor of Business Administration program at CIU have access to a range of online learning resources and tools, including online libraries, databases and other research materials. The program also uses a robust Learning Management System that is easy to use and provides students with all the tools they need to succeed in their studies.

What kind of networking opportunities will I have access to during the program, including connections with faculty, other students and alumni?

During the program, students will have access to a range of networking opportunities, including connections with faculty members, other students and alumni. These networking opportunities can be highly valuable for career growth and development, as well as for building connections in the business community.

How much will the program cost, and what kind of financial aid or scholarships are available to help cover the costs?

The cost of the Doctor of Business Administration program at CIU varies depending on whether you choose to study on a part-time or full-time basis. Check with Financial Aid for information on how to manage program costs.


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