If you aspire to become a business school lecturer, a doctorate in business management might be a great choice for you. This qualification is a professional doctoral programme that can help you take advantage of other opportunities a doctorate in business will bring your way.
THIS ARTICLE DISCUSSES:
- Two paths into academia
- How a doctorate in management differs from a PhD
- Academic ranks
- The doctorate is a first step
- A doctorate in business management brings credibility
Two paths into academia
There are two paths into the world of academia. If you wish to pursue a formal career as a researcher and lecturer in academia, a doctor of philosophy degree (PhD) is the usual option. If you have considerable experience in industry and want to advance to the C-suite or into consultancy, a professional doctoral programme such as a doctorate in management will give you the required edge – and a jump in salary.
This National Qualification Framework (NQF) level 10 qualification will give you the right to use the title of Dr in front of your name, and permit you to apply for academic posts at universities as well as conduct research to publish articles in research journals.
A doctorate in management differs from a PhD in that the research you undertake will be practical, aiming to address industry issues. The PhD is more research-orientated, and suited for those who wish to build careers as academics.
The title of professor is awarded by universities, and may be used only at the university that awards it. If a professor resigns before retirement, he or she may no longer use the title. The post of professor is usually awarded to a senior academic with a distinguished teaching and publishing track record.
For more clarity, let’s have a look at various ranks in academia. Note that the terminology varies across countries because of “systemic and institutional differences” (Bitzer, 2008).
Who may qualify
|Associate/assistant lecturer||Contract staff|
|Adjunct professor||Also contract, part-time staff – visiting lecturers or industry executives with a wealth of experience|
|Lecturer||Entry-level full-time staff with a master’s degree (minimum)|
|Senior lecturer||Academic staff with relevant experience, a doctoral degree, and publications to their name; experience and publication requirements vary across countries, increasing significantly from senior lecturer to full professor level|
|Professor emeritus||Title conferred at a university’s discretion, on retirement, to professors who have made exceptional academic contributions|
(Wikipedia, 2014; UCT, 2023)
So the answer to whether you can become a professor with a doctorate in business management is yes: it is a first step towards becoming a professor.
While the Oxford dictionary defines a professor as “a university teacher of the highest rank” (Oxford University Press, nd), to earn the post of full professor, you need to produce a considerable number of research publications (research output), have many years of teaching under your belt, and the approval of your university’s senate.
At entry level in a higher education institution you will be an academic staff member (sometimes informally called a professor) and can then progress towards becoming a (full) professor. In many countries, including South Africa, only academic staff from public universities are technically entitled to take on the appellation of professor, so if you are planning to teach in a private institution, you might not progress to the title of professor, though you will still be able to work as a full-time academic staff member with similar responsibilities but a different title.
That’s not the end of the story, though: there is a thrust across the globe towards engaging industry practitioners in academia to bring practical insights to academic programmes. The professional doctorate programmes such as a doctorate in business management vouch for your credibility as an expert with practical knowledge of industry, as well as of a researcher, capable of generating high-quality research output. They also differentiate you and give you the option of advancing your career in industry as well as in the role of visiting faculty, should you wish to pursue your dream of a career as a full-time academic at a later stage.
If you think a doctorate is the right choice for you, have a look at what’s needed to enrol in Regenesys Business School’s Doctorate of Business Management programme.
You might also like to read:
- What is a Doctorate of Business Management?
- Can a DBM holder become a professor?
- Is a Doctorate in Business Management As Good As a PhD?
- Bitzer, E.M. (2008). The professoriate in South Africa: Potentially risking status inflation.
- Oxford University Press. (nd). Oxford Advanced Learner’s dictionary.
- UCT. (2023). GSB faculty.
- Wikipedia. (2014). Academic Ranks in South Africa.