Logistics Systems Ph.D. Program

Doctoral Program Coordinator Contact Information

Dr. Tim Hawkins
Room: BLB 394G
Phone: (940) 369-7133
Email: Timothy.Hawkins@unt.edu

Program Overview

The purpose of the doctoral program at UNT is to mentor students to be highly capable and proficient researchers and teachers. We strive to place our students in tenure-track positions at research institutions. Our program is designed to enable all students to conduct research that is publishable in premier journals. This requires that each student admitted to the doctoral program make a commitment to:

  • Develop a strong foundational understanding of the research process, the structure of key theories, and their applications.
  • Achieve an integrative understanding of the broad issues in the field of logistics and operations management, and how these issues relate to one another.
  • Develop skills necessary to design and conduct empirical research publishable in leading journals.
  • Maintain a tradition of scholarship and excellence in research and teaching.
Why a Ph.D. at the UNT in Logistics Systems?

There are four key attributes that you should consider when selecting a Ph.D. program.UNT is exceedingly strong on each of those attributes:

  1. Is the program looking to weed out students or ensure student success?
    • Once we select a student for our program we want you to be successful, if you do your part we will strive to ensure you achieve your goals.
  2. Does the coursework prepare you for academic success?
    • There are two keys to academic success. The first is an understanding of the theoretical domain, the other is a strong grasp of research methods. Often times programs will emphasize one over the other. Our Ph.D. program, and our program success in general, is based upon an outstanding comprehension of theory and methods.
  3. Does the program prepare you to be a well-rounded scholar?
    • It is true that our Ph.D. is part of an R1 research university and a top-ranked Logistics program, yet the century-old tradition of UNT as a world-class teaching school remains in our DNA. As faculty, we understand the importance of research, but we measure success as the quality of the education, the amount of publication they have when they graduate, and strong placement upon graduation.
  4. Does the program have an industry connection?
    • We have tremendous industry contacts. For a doctoral student, this is key. This means that the risk associated with your ability to gain data to support your research projects and dissertation will be lowered. Secondly, as faculty mentors, we will provide you with a foundation for publishing success before you leave the program.

Learn more about the goals and expectations of a Ph.D. in Logistics Systems:


You must meet the admission requirements of the Toulouse Graduate School®, which consist of:

  • Completing an application
  • Official transcripts (a minimum GPA requirement of 3.0 on a bachelors degree and a 3.5 on a Masters degree)
  • Official GMAT/GRE scores, and
  • Application fee

In addition to the Toulouse Graduate School admission requirements, you must fulfill the following program requirements:

  • Three doctoral applicant evaluation forms or letters of recommendation from professors or colleagues familiar with your academic record
  • An essay stating your reasons for pursuing doctoral study, personal objectives, and career plans
  • A résumé/curriculum vitae
Academic Program

The curriculum is an integrative learning environment that includes critical-thinking seminars, research and instructional mentoring, and experiences that prepare the doctoral student to become a scholar and educator in the logistics, operations, and supply chain management discipline. Specifically, the Ph.D. in Logistics Systems program is a basic research program, providing knowledge, skills, and experiences that facilitate the doctoral student’s ability to develop high-quality research that advances theory and practice.

Research Methods, Measurement, and Metrics (minimum 15 credit hours)

All Ph.D. in students in Logistics Systems will take a minimum of fifteen (15) credit hours in Research Track courses with Ph.D. students from other departments in the G. Brint Ryan College of Business. This provides students with an opportunity to interact with students who have a wide variety of interests. These courses include:

Teaching Enhancement

In the first two years of the program, students will complete one (1) credit hour of BUSI 6100 - Graduate Student Student Teaching Excellence Program (GSTEP). GSTEP is designed for all UNT graduate students regardless of teaching experience. The course focuses on a variety of topics related to university teaching and student learning including: identifying assumptions about teaching and learning, writing learning objectives, designing effective assessment techniques and active learning environments, evaluating teaching effectiveness, and working with a diverse population of learners.

Also, each semester students will engage in a teaching enhancement seminar hosted by one of the Ph.D. programs at the Ryan College of Business.

Logistics Seminars

In addition to the 15 hours described above, all Ph.D. in Logistics Systems students will take a minimum of twenty-one (21) credit hours in logistics, operations, and supply chain management seminars offered by the Department of Logistics and Operations Management.

Logistics Systems concentration, 21 hours

  • LSCM 6001 – Guidance for Research, Education Effectiveness, and Networking
  • LSCM 6003 – Workshop in Logistics Practice
  • LSCM 6011 – Logistics Theory
  • LSCM 6041 – Supply Chain Strategy
  • LSCM 6051 – Systems Theory and Experimentation
  • LSCM 6071 – Operations Research in Logistics
  • LSCM 6600 – Seminar on Logistics Issues


Students also will also have a minimum of nine (9) credit hours of coursework they can use as electives. These courses are selected by the student in combination with the Ph.D. Coordinator and Doctoral Programs Committee. The purpose of these classes should be to advance the student's understanding of research or a domain specific to their dissertation.

See the  UNT Graduate Catalog for more information about the classes.


In your 3rd year of the program, you will select a committee that will provide expertise throughout your dissertation process. This usually involves 12 hours of Dissertation coursework during which the dissertation proposal is developed and defended, then the dissertation research is conducted, and the final outcome is defended. Candidates who have not completed all requirements for the doctorate within 5 years must successfully repeat the comprehensive exam (written and oral).

Dissertation Research (12 Hours)

  • LSCM 6950 Doctoral Dissertation (12)
Ph.D. in Logistics Assessment

Preliminary Examination

In order to progress to 2nd year status, students are expected to identify a research topic that they find interesting and immerse themselves in the academic literature that is relevant to the selected research topic. The development of a series of well-thought-out and defendable hypotheses constitutes the most important outcome of this examination. Each student must be able to confront a related body of literature, justify why their research question is relevant and important, and demonstrate mastery of the most relevant literature and theory while effectively articulating this in a scholarly paper. This paper will be evaluated by a committee consisting of three faculty members including the student’s advisor and two other faculty in a supporting role.

Qualification Examination

In order to progress to 3rd year status and the dissertation phase, students are expected to create, develop and execute an individual research project that may be similar to the qualifying examination paper in the topic area, but also must be a new conceptual idea that either significantly extends the project or is considerably different from it. Each student must be able to confront a related body of literature, justify why their research question is relevant and important, and demonstrate their approach to collecting and analyzing data while effectively articulating this in a scholarly paper that contains new insights drawn from those data. This paper will be evaluated by a committee consisting of three faculty members including the student’s advisor and two other faculty in a supporting role.

Proposal Defense

Upon approval of the student's Dissertation Committee, a dissertation proposal defense may be scheduled after the completion of a minimum of six hours of dissertation research hours (LSCM 6950). The Dissertation Committee will set the time and place of an oral defense, after consultation with the Ph.D. Coordinator and the RCoB Office of Graduate Programs and Research.

Dissertation Defense

When the candidate's Dissertation Committee agrees that the dissertation is ready for defense, the student will work with their Dissertation Chair and the Logistics Systems Ph.D. Coordinator to schedule an oral defense. The defense will be conducted in accordance with policies and procedures established by the Graduate School of the University, the RCoB, and the candidate's major area.