School of Business

MBA in Business Administration

The Master of Business Administration program is designed for students who wish to advance their careers and contribute to their companies.  Partnering with the business community, the program emphasizes the skills needed to inform and guide organizational change.  Students in the program develop cross-functional business solutions to "real world" problems, and cultivate a broad critical perspective, interpersonal skills, and the analytical tools of management.  The program also emphasizes an appreciation of the international and ethical contexts of professional practice.  Students are encouraged to apply to the program regardless of their undergraduate academic specialization.

The MBA program is designed for part-time, working professionals; the program also accommodates those students wishing to pursue full-time study. Evening classes and summer course offerings make it possible for students to tailor the program to meet their individual needs.

The MBA program is comprised of 27 credit hours of core courses and 9 credit hours of elective courses. In addition, up to 15 credit hours of foundation courses may be required depending on a student's previous academic background.

We are accredited by AACSB, The Association to Advance Collegiate Schools of Business. AACSB International assures quality and promotes excellence and continuous improvement in undergraduate and graduate education for business administration and accounting.  AACSB accreditation is the mark of quality distinction most widely sought after by business schools -- less than 5% worldwide have earned the achievement.

Located in an area of robust business activity, the School of Business emphasizes partnership with the business community and non-profit organizations.  Examples include internships, projects with local businesses, business executives as guest teachers, and business-sponsored research, all with the objective of exposing our students to the "real world" of business.

Accelerated Undergraduate-Graduate Programs in the MBA

The school offers opportunities for undergraduates to complete both a bachelor’s and master’s degree on an accelerated schedule. Undergraduate majors in EngineeringTechnology Management, or any other bachelor's degree program may apply for provisional admission to the MBA program, and fully matriculate in the graduate program following completion of their undergraduate requirements.

Accelerated Graduate Degree Programs

The School of Business and UM School of Law offer an accelerated dual degree in MBA and JD. Students apply separately to each program. The Law Program is 90 credits, and the MBA Program is 36 credits of required core (27 credits) and elective courses (9 credits). Taken separately, the two programs require 126 credits. The Law Program will accept 9 credits for courses taken in the MBA Program and the MBA Program will accept 9 credits taken in the Law Program. This would result in a program of 108 credits (81 Law and 27 MBA). It should be possible to complete the 108-credit program in four years with summer study. Students are encouraged to speak to the chair of MBA or Associate Dean of UM School of Law for more information.

The School of Business and Muskie School of Public Service offer an accelerated dual degree in MBA and Public Health (MPH). The program allows students to earn both the M.B.A. and M.P.H. simultaneously by designating a certain number of crossover courses that satisfy the graduation requirements of each degree. Full-time students may thus complete both degrees in three years instead of the four years that would ordinarily be required. Separate admission is required.

The master of business administration program at the University of Southern Maine is composed of twenty-seven credit hours of core courses and nine credit hours of elective or concentration courses. In addition, up to fifteen credit hours of foundation courses may be required depending on the student's previous academic background.

Foundation Courses (0-15 credits)

M.B.A. courses numbered below MBA 610 are not applicable toward the thirty-six credits needed for graduation. Admitted students whose educational background is lacking the foundation courses are required to satisfactorily complete each of these courses or their equivalents as stipulated in their letter of admission.

Grades earned in M.B.A.-level foundation courses are included in the student's grade point average. Any foundation courses in which a student earns less than a C grade (2.0) must be repeated.

Faculty strongly recommend that students, who do not have a solid recollection of foundation course content, retake or, at a minimum, review content material independently prior to enrolling in core courses. Students may consult the School of Business web site or faculty for information on course content.

A minimum grade of C (2.0) from a regionally accredited institution of higher education or successful completion of an equivalent CLEP exam or departmental exam (if available) is needed to meet a foundation course requirement. Coursework from non-accredited institutions will be evaluated on an individual basis. After admission students needing foundation courses are expected to enroll in the graduate courses to meet the requirement. In extenuating circumstances a student may petition the director for permission to enroll in undergraduate equivalent courses to meet M.B.A.-level foundation course requirements. Any undergraduate courses taken will not be included in the computation of the student's graduate grade point average.

     EDU 671 Organizational Behavior
     MBA 501 Economics Analysis
     MBA 502 Accounting Concepts
     MBA 504 Probability and Statistics for Business Decision Making
     MBA 505 Financial Management

Computer application skills

All students are expected to have basic computer skills in word processing and spreadsheet usage, either through prior experience or education. Students lacking in computer application skills are responsible for seeking coursework that will fulfill these expectations.

Core Courses (27 credits)

     Alpha Course:  MBA 611 Introduction to Organizational Change
     Accounting (Select one)
          ACC 630 Management Accounting Systems
          MBA 631 Financial Accounting
     Ethical and Legal Issues: MBA 615 Ethical and Legal Issues in Business
     Finance (Select one)
          MBA 623 Financial Engineering
          MBA 625 International Finance (may not double count in International)
          MBA 626 Strategic Valuation
          MBA 627 Investment Management
          MBA 629 Financial Modeling
     Information Systems: MBA 674 Strategic Management of Technology and Innovation
     International (Select one)
          MBA 612 Topics in International Business
          MBA 625 International Finance
     Marketing: MBA 660 Managerial Marketing
     Operations: MBA 672 Supply Chain Management
     Capstone: MBA 698 Practicum

Electives (nine credits; select three courses)    

Courses used to fulfill core requirements above may not be used to fulfill elective choices.  Students may elect a concentration in one (or more) of six areas: accounting, business analytics, engineering, finance, health management and policy, or sustainability.  Please refer to concentration links for specific concentration course requirements.  Students preferring not to concentrate may select elective courses from the following list:
     ACC 630 Management Accounting Systems
     ACC 631 Current Issues in Accounting
     ACC 633 Taxation for Business and Investment Planning
     ACC 634 Advanced Business Taxation
     ACC 635 Advanced Individual Taxation
     ACC 641 Advanced Financial Accounting Topics
     MBA 612 Topics in International Business
     MBA 623 Financial Engineering
     MBA 625 International Finance 
     MBA 626 Strategic Valuation
     MBA 627 Investment Management
     MBA 629 Financial Modeling
     MBA 631 Financial Accounting
     MBA 641 New Product Development
     MBA 642 Leadership
     MBA 643 Creative Problem Solving
     MBA 646 Negotiation and Conflict Management
     MBA 647 Organizational Strategy
     MBA 649 Introduction to System Dynamics
     MBA 657 Socially Responsible Business and Marketing
     MBA 665 Consumer Behavior
     MBA 669 Advanced Marketing Research
     MBA 670 Management Science
     MBA 675 Production Operations Management
     MBA 676 Data Management and Analytics
     MBA 677 Information Visualization
     MBA 678 Predictive Analytics
     *MBA 691 Independent Study
     *MBA 695 Internship 

*Students may select either MBA 691 or 695, but not both.   

Orientation

All admitted students are required to participate in the orientation session during the first year of enrollment. The orientation session is held in the fall semester. The session is geared toward developing a sense of community and enhanced communications and trust among the M.B.A. students and faculty. Information on the orientation session will be provided. There is a mandatory fee assessed once for this orientation.

Grade Policy/Minimum Grade Point Average

All graduate courses numbered MBA 610 or higher must be completed with a minimum grade of C (2.0) in order to carry graduate degree credit. If a student receives a grade below C (2.0) in a required graduate course, the student must repeat the course and has only one opportunity to raise the grade for that course to C (2.0) or higher. A student receiving two grades below C (2.0) will be dismissed from the program.

A student whose grade point average falls below 3.00 will be placed on probation. The student will have 12 semester hours in which to bring the grade point average back to at least a 3.00. Students who fail to do this may be dismissed by the director. Any student may appeal any dismissal decision in writing to the M.B.A. Admissions Committee.

A student who has completed the program of study must have a cumulative grade point average of 3.00 to receive the M.B.A. degree. If a student has completed all requisite courses with a cumulative grade point average below a 3.00, a maximum of six additional credits of 600-level courses may be attempted in order to raise the cumulative grade point average to at least a 3.00.

Readmission

A regularly admitted student who is dismissed from the M.B.A. program may not be readmitted. Under exceptional circumstances, a conditionally admitted student who fails to meet one or more conditions and is dismissed from the M.B.A. program may seek permission to reapply for regular admission.

Transfer Credit

A student admitted to the M.B.A. program may apply to have graduate credits transferred from other regionally accredited institutions of higher education. Transfer credit is not granted until a student has earned nine graduate credit hours from the University of Southern Maine. A grade of B (3.00) or higher must be received in each course requested for transfer credit. To be accepted, the course also must be judged applicable to a student's program of study. A maximum of nine semester hours of transfer credit may be accepted and applied toward the M.B.A. When possible, students should ascertain whether or not transfer credit will be granted by the School of Business before enrolling in a course at another institution.

Time Limit

In order to be counted toward the M.B.A. core and elective requirements, graduate coursework must be completed within six years of the date a student enrolls in his or her first 600-level course. Graduate courses completed more than six years prior will be reviewed and may or may not be allowed. Courses considered outdated must be repeated or replaced for use toward the M.B.A.

     

Admission Requirements

At the University of Southern Maine, several factors are evaluated in determining a candidate's admissibility to the M.B.A. program. Included in the assessment of a candidate's potential to perform satisfactorily in the M.B.A. program are:

  • the undergraduate grade point average (GPA),
  • the rigor of the undergraduate's field of study,
  • the reputation of the institution awarding the baccalaureate degree,
  • academic performance in any previous graduate coursework taken,
  • demonstrated potential for successful completion of the program,
  • qualities likely to enhance the educational environment at USM,
  • demonstrated leadership,
  • the Graduate Management Admission Test (GMAT) score (Note: Candidates with terminal degrees, including the PharmD, normally are not required to take the GMAT. Students who have successfully passed all four parts of the CPA exam are not required to submit the GMAT. Note that the LL.B. from outside the United States is not an acceptable terminal degree, a condition which may also exist for other non-U.S. degrees.)
  • three letters of recommendation, and
  • a candidate's record of successful business or professional experience.

Although the admissions committee has no affirmative duty to seek this information, it will consider other information about the applicant including:

  • professional knowledge of faculty members, administrators, and staff at USM,
  • information within the files at USM, and
  • publicly available information about the applicant.

To be admitted either fully, conditionally, or as special or transient student, students must have no evidence of past conduct incompatible with the educational environment at USM. This is defined as conduct which, if it occurred at USM, would have a detrimental effect on: (1) the ability of fellow students to learn, (2) the ability of instructors to teach effectively, or (3) the ability of administrators and staff to engage in their normal professional activities. Examples of such conduct include, without limitation: commission of a crime, other than a minor traffic offense; commission of an intentional act resulting in physical or psychological injury or threat thereof; intentional misrepresentation; and violation by the applicant of a code of conduct at any educational institution, employer, military organization, or professional association. An applicant who has engaged in such conduct may, at the discretion of the admissions committee, be admitted based upon its judgment (e.g., because of the passage of time) that there is little likelihood that the conduct will recur in the future.

In addition to receiving strong recommendations, fully admitted students must have a formula score of 1,100 or higher and absence of evidence of past conduct that is incompatible with the educational environment at USM. (The formula is [GPA x 200] + GMAT. The GPA will be computed twice–overall GPA and GPA of the last sixty credit hours. The higher of the two scores will be used in the calculation.) For the purposes of computing this score, all undergraduate-level coursework, including courses taken after receipt of the bachelor's degree, is counted. Fully admitted students should have a minimum GMAT score of 500. Applicants whose formula score falls below 1,100 or whose GMAT is lower than 500, but who show evidence of exceptional:

  • performance in outside activities,
  • evidence of creativity and leadership, or
  • accomplishment in business, and
  • who show absence of evidence of past conduct that is incompatible with the educational environment at USM, may be granted full admission.
Conditional Admission

Applicants whose formula score is between 950 and 1,100 but who show evidence of very good:

  • performance in outside activities,
  • evidence of creativity and leadership, or
  • accomplishment in business and
  • who show absence of evidence of past conduct that is incompatible with the educational environment at USM, may be granted conditional admission.

Applicants who would normally be granted full admission but about whom the Admissions Committee has questions regarding some aspect of the applicant's background (e.g., weak recommendations, low grades in key undergraduate courses) may be granted conditional admission. Applicants whose formula score is below 950 but whose GMAT score is 500 or greater and who show evidence of exceptional:

  • performance in outside activities,
  • evidence of creativity and leadership, or
  • accomplishment in business and
  • who show absence of evidence of past conduct that is incompatible with the educational environment at USM may be granted conditional admission.

Only a limited number of applicants will be admitted with conditional admission status in any one academic year. Applications received by the recommended admissions deadlines that fall into the conditional acceptance category will be put on a waiting list and will be considered shortly after the admission deadline. Applications received after the recommended admissions deadlines and that fall into the conditional category will be put on a waiting list and considered during the next admission cycle. Applicants admitted conditionally will be required to complete a specified set of courses (either foundation, regular, or both). Successful completion of the conditions will result in full admission to the program. Failure to complete the required conditions will result in dismissal from the program, unless there are extenuating circumstances. Under exceptional circumstances, a conditionally admitted student who fails to meet one or more condition(s) and is dismissed from the M.B.A. program may be invited by the director to reapply for regular admission.

Decisions about which courses conditionally admitted students must take will be made by the Admissions Committee, in consultation with appropriate faculty members. In some circumstances, conditionally admitted students may be counseled to take undergraduate equivalents either in lieu of or in addition to foundation courses.

Deferred Admission

An applicant admitted for full-time or part-time study must register for that semester for which he or she has been admitted. In certain circumstances, with a written request received prior to the start of the semester in which the student has been admitted, deferred admission will be granted to regularly admitted applicants upon the approval of the director. In the event that no written request is received, a student is considered to have withdrawn from the program.

Application Materials

MBA applicants must submit:

  • A completed application. In the required essay (300-500 words), please state your reasons for pursuing graduate business education, your professional goals, and how you think this program of study will contribute to these goals. Make sure to touch on the following points, as applicable: performance in outside activities, evidence of creativity and leadership, and record of accomplishment.
  • Official scores from the Graduate Management Admission Test (GMAT). GRE may be submitted in lieu of GMAT. (Note: Candidates with terminal degrees, including the PharmD, normally are not required to take the GMAT. Students who have successfully passed all four parts of the CPA exam are not required to submit the GMAT. Note that the LL.B. from outside the United States is not an acceptable terminal degree, a condition which may also exist for other non-U.S. degrees.)
  • Three letters of recommendation.
  • Test of English as a Foreign Language (TOEFL) score of at least 550 on the paper-based TOEFL, 213 on the computer-based TOEFL, or 79 on the Internet-based TOEFL (iBT), or an IELTS score of 6.5 or higher for students whose native language is not English.
  • A résumé that includes post-baccalaureate, full-time work experience including military experience.

Application information may be obtained from the USM Admissions Office.

Application Deadline

Applications are reviewed on a rolling basis. Candidates are encouraged to complete applications by August 1 (for fall admission), December 1 (for spring admission), and April 1 (for summer admission). International applicants and applicants seeking financial assistance should complete applications by March 1. Applicants wishing to be considered for merit scholarships in graduate programs beginning in September are encouraged to submit completed applications by early January.