Online Master of Business Administration
Frequently Asked Questions
Does my undergraduate degree or my professional experience have to be in business?
No. Applicants must hold a degree from a regionally accredited undergraduate institution in the United States or from a recognized institution in a foreign country, but MBA students come from a myriad of backgrounds. They hold undergraduate degrees from a variety of areas, such as business, psychology, communications, medicine, education, engineering, arts, or architecture. Students work in fields as varied as sales, education, military, manufacturing, healthcare, marketing, technology, the arts, banking, or professional sports.
Do I need work experience in order to qualify for admission?
While there is not a minimum work experience requirement to qualify for admission to the program, quantity and quality of professional experience does factor in admissions decisions. A typical online MBA student will have at least two or three years of professional experience demonstrating quality career growth. The variation in work experience among MBA students is broad, with some students recently earning their bachelor’s degree while others have 25+ years of post-bachelor's work history.
What should I include in my resume if I do not have extensive work experience?
Applicant résumés should note any degree(s) earned, academic honors and awards, internships, extra-curricular activities (including volunteering and community service), international experiences, and any other activities that demonstrate your leadership qualities. Of course, the résumé should also include work experience. It should include a list of any professional positions , describe job responsibilities, promotions, awards, leadership and management skills, and cite experience working in teams.
What does the admissions committee look for?
The admissions committee bases its decision on the strength of the application as a whole. Outstanding qualities or accomplishments in one area might overcome weakness in a different area.
What is the minimum GRE/GMAT score?
We do not require a minimum GRE or GMAT score as we evaluate the whole application, not a single score. Many applicants qualify for GMAT/GRE waivers on the basis of certain criteria. Please review the Online MBA admissions page for more information.
Do I need to take the TOEFL? What is the minimum score?
USF requires students with a native language other than English to demonstrate English proficiency with the TOEFL or IELTS. Details on this requirement can be found in the USF Graduate Catalog. View more information about English proficiency.
How long will it take to complete my degree requirements?
USF's online MBA is a 33-credit hour program. Non-business majors are required to take pre-requisite business foundation courses (maximum 16 credit hours) after being accepted into the program. Candidates who earned a business degree within the last seven years from regionally accredited business programs might be able to skip some of these classes after a coursework review.
Full-time students will need at least three semesters to complete the program (this timeline does not include additional foundation courses). Part-time students can complete all work within approximately three years. Students must complete all coursework within five years.
How many classes do students take each semester?
Full-time students take at least nine credit hours of courses each semester. Part-time students are encouraged to take two courses per semester and must complete six credit hours per calendar year to remain on active status as a degree-seeking student.
Are there any portions of the program that must be completed on campus?
Yes. Students will participate in a new student residency session on the USF St. Petersburg campus at the start of the program. Many other co-curricular professional development opportunities will be offered throughout the course of study as well. All are optional, but strongly encouraged. In addition, optional immersion electives offered for online MBA students will either be offered on campus or as study abroad programs.
As an Online MBA student, may I take on campus classes if I choose to?
Yes, with limitations. Online MBA students can consult with their advisor if there are specific on campus courses that they would like to take as credit toward their MBA. In most cases, Online MBA students will be allowed to take up to 6 credit hours of on campus coursework. Many courses have restrictions for certain populations of degree-seeking students, so it is important that course selection be well thought out and done with approval of your advisor. Courses outside the Online MBA curriculum will be subject to university established graduate tuition rates, dependent on the student’s qualifying status as either a Florida or Non-Florida resident.