Students can choose a concentration from seven major field areas. Within each major field, emphasis is placed on understanding fundamental problems and areas of inquiry, gaining familiarity with state-of-the-art methods of conducting research particular to that field, and relating the field to the broader context of management and other disciplines. The following academic units currently offer doctoral training:
- Behavioral Decision Research
- Decisions, Operations & Technology Management
- Global Economics and Management
- Management and Organizations
The level of competence expected in the major field is that of a professional research scholar who is contributing to that field's progress. This implies a broad knowledge of the field and its literature and a detailed understanding of current research in at least one subfield. Each academic unit sets its own required and/or recommended courses. Each student designs a course of study in preparation for the major field examination. Such study may include courses offered within UCLA Anderson and other UCLA departments as well as doctoral seminars and independent study with faculty advisers. Proficiency in the major field is determined by written examination, supplemented in some curriculum areas by an oral examination. To maintain normal progress, the exam should be taken during a student's second or third year; it must be passed by the end of the spring quarter of a student's third year of study. Performance on the major field examination is an important indicator of a student's intellectual competence and capacity for successful completion of the degree.