Frequently Asked Questions

Beyond Business Magazine

What graduate programs are offered online? Currently, only the MBA is being offered in the totally online format. The EMBA, which specializes in banking and financial institutions, is offered in a hybrid format and is subject to a different fee structure.

Can I complete the entire program online? The MBA may be completed entirely online. To provide greater flexibility, students may elect to take classes in the face-to-face format at either the Huntsville campus or at The Woodlands Center. The stem classes for the MBA are fully available online. All students are encouraged to communicate with the Associate Director of Graduate Studies for advisement (Rick Thaler, or 936-294-1239).

What if I do not have an undergraduate degree in business? A student with a non-business baccalaureate degree or a degree from an institution located outside the United States may be required to take stem (preparatory) courses. Currently, not all stem courses are available online however, strategies for completion of these courses in a distance format exist.

How many students will be admitted to the online MBA per semester? Students are admitted into the MBA program and not the online portion specifically, therefore, there is no actual limit to the number of students admitted to the program. There are a limited number of online courses offered each semester with each course having its specific capacity. Entry into the classes is on a first-come-first-served basis. Students are encouraged to apply and register as soon as possible.

What is the maximum number of students allowed in each course? Generally, the maximum number of students allowed in online graduate classes will vary between 25 and 35 depending on the nature of the course. Courses with heavier writing or analytical requirements will generally be limited to 25 students, while others will be limited to 35. Students wishing to attend classes in the online format are encouraged to enroll in classes as soon as possible.

I don't live in Texas, can I still apply? Yes, individuals from areas outside of Texas may apply for, and be accepted into, the MBA program.

What is the deadline for applications and when should I apply? The application deadlines established by the University are also applicable to applicants for the MBA program regardless of delivery method. All application material must be received by August 1 for fall semester entry, December 1 for spring semester entry, May 15 for first summer session entry, and June 15 for second summer session entry. Applicants are encouraged to submit all required material as soon as possible because of the limited number of seats in both the online and face-to-face classes. International students have deadlines that are usually 60 days earlier.

During which semesters are students admitted? Students are admitted into the MBA program for any semester, however, during the initial semesters of the online delivery option not all classes will be offered every semester. Online class offerings will be expanded as demand for those classes expands.

Is the GMAT required for the online MBA? The GMAT is required for the MBA program regardless of the delivery method. Exceptions: An undergraduate GPA from your degree granting U.S. institution of 3.5 or higher; a previous graduate degree; or an undergraduate GPA of at least 2.5 at the degree granting U.S. institution with at least three years of significant managerial experience. Please note: the GMAT waiver based on experience is not granted automatically; email if you would like to be considered for a GMAT waiver based on experience.

Can students take on-campus classes in conjunction with the online courses? Students may enroll in online courses and/or face-to-face courses.

How many hours are required to complete the MBA program? The MBA requires 36 graduate hours including 24 hours of core courses and 12 hours of electives. There is no difference in the number of hours required based on the delivery method chosen.

How long will it take to complete the program? The MBA program may completed totally online in as few as four semesters, however, it is not recommended that students who are working attempt more than six hours in a semester. A more realistic timeline would be approximately two years.

Is there a maximum time allotted to complete the online MBA? Unless granted an extension, any master's degree at Sam Houston State University must be completed in six years from the initial semester of acceptance.

How is the online MBA program different from the MBA? There is only one MBA degree but with different delivery methods available to students. Whether the MBA is attempted in the online format or face-to-face format there is a core of 24 hours and 12 hours of electives. The availability of online courses allows students added flexibility of when and where to attend classes.

Are there additional costs associated with the online MBA? Sam Houston State University's online MBA is high-quality, price-competitive program. Tuition and fees vary by location and/or delivery mode. For instance, courses taken at The Woodlands Center incur a fee of $50 per credit hour. Similarly, online courses incur an additional charge of $101 per credit hour. These additional fees are offset by the convenience of taking courses online or nearer to work or home. In addition, if a student enrolls in only online courses, several other University fees are waived.

What is the cost of the program? A tuition and fee schedule is available from the Bursars' Office website. The cost of books is not included in this schedule.

Is Financial Aid available to students admitted to the online MBA? Yes. Please contact the Scholarships4Kats program.

What is the maximum number of hours per semester are students allowed and how many hours should I take? At the graduate level a student is considered full-time if they are enrolled in nine semester hours. However, for a full-time student who is not employed, twelve semester credit hours would be a normal load in graduate school. For a student who is employed at some level the maximum number of hours is dependent upon the number of hours being worked, the types of classes being taken, and other commitments such as family. Many students who are employed on a full-time basis find that three to six hours, depending on the type of classes, is a load that allows them to get the most out of the learning experience of graduate school and perform well in their job.

Is there a minimum number of hours required to be taken each semester? There is no requirement for a minimum number of hours to be undertaken in any semester or term.

Can I transfer in courses from another graduate institution to be used toward the online MBA? The College of Business Administration will allow up to nine semester credit hours of graduate course work to be transferred in to the MBA program with the approval of the Graduate Coordinator. It is suggested that applicants contact the Graduate Coordinator prior to enrollment to discuss any desired transfer credit.

Will my diploma indicate that my graduate degree was earned online? There is no difference in the wording on the diploma or transcript of a student who complete the MBA either completely online, face-to-face, or a combination of delivery methods. What is earned is an MBA.

Is there a thesis requirement? There is no thesis requirement for the MBA regardless of the delivery method.

Is the online MBA program accredited? All graduate programs in the College of Business Administration, including the MBA, are fully accredited by both AACSB International, the premier accrediting body for schools of business world-wide, and the regional accrediting body the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools (SACS).

Where can I find course descriptions and a schedule of courses offered? Course descriptions for all of the courses in the MBA can be found in the University's Graduate Catalog (

What are the grade requirements? Students must maintain a cumulative GPA of at least 3.00 on all graduate level coursework. Students who earn one grade of "F" or three grades of "C" in 5000-level courses (including stem courses) will be terminated from the program.

Who can I contact for further information? Please contact the COBA Office of Graduate Studies:

Rick Thaler Associate Director, Graduate Studies and Distance Learning

Deana Marek Administrative Assistant for Graduate Studies

Tel: (936) 294-1239 Fax: (936) 294-3612 E -mail: Mailing Address: P. O. Box 2056, Huntsville, TX 77341-2056