Graduate Programs FAQs

Answers to frequently asked questions about Lindner graduate programs are available below. To learn more, you may also review:

Where is the University of Cincinnati located?

We are located in the city of Cincinnati in the southwest corner of the state of Ohio. For our campus location and driving directions, visit Google Maps. The address of the University of Cincinnati Lindner College of Business, for mapping and GPS purposes, is 2925 Campus Green, Cincinnati, OH 45221.

When is the application deadline, and what do I need to submit?

Each program at the Lindner College of Business has its own application deadlines and requirements. Please visit the Lindner Admissions page to view the specific information for your desired program. We advise you to apply as early as possible to maximize your admission potential.

Do your programs offer scholarships or financial aid?

Merit-based scholarships are available on a limited basis to incoming full-time students. Applicants are automatically considered for these scholarships and no separate scholarship application is required.

Merit-based scholarships are also available on a limited basis to eligible part-time students. Part-time students are eligible if their employer does not fully reimburse their tuition.

Several need-based financial assistance programs are available to graduate students through the federal government. The UC Financial Aid Office is the best resource for information pertaining to these programs.

Are there additional requirements for international applicants?

Yes, there are additional requirements for international applicants such as successfully passing the TOEFL exam and obtaining a student visa. Important information for international applicants can be found by visiting UC's International Student Services Office.

Do I need to take the TOEFL or IELTS?

TOEFL or IELTS is required for all international students whose native language is not English. Visit the entrance exams page for more details. 

Why do I need to take the GMAT or GRE?

The GMAT is a standardized test used as a graduate programs entrance exam and is a dependable predictor of your ability to do the coursework necessary to complete a graduate degree. Most graduate programs require an entrance examination but waiver options are also available and listed on the admissions page.

Is the GMAT/GRE used for any other reason?

Yes. The Lindner College of Business also uses scores to help determine scholarship awards. Test scores are not the only determining factor for scholarships, but they do play an important part in our decision.

What is the difference between the GRE and the GMAT?

The GMAT and GRE are similar in structure but the GMAT content is more relevant to business and graduate-level business coursework. The GRE is more widely used in graduate programs outside of business.

Which test is better to take: GMAT or GRE?

Students have a variety of preferences and opinions on the two options for graduate-level standardized testing. There is no clear preference for either exam and the Lindner College of Business accepts scores from either exam.
For more information on the GMAT exam, visit gmac.com or mba.com. For more information on the GRE exam, visit ets.org.

What are the required minimum scores for the GMAT and GRE?

Required GMAT and GRE scores vary from program to program within the Lindner College of Business. Our recruiting team can provide you with detailed information regarding your desired program and program average can be found on the entrance exams page.

Does the Lindner College of Business need my official scores to evaluate my application?

Yes. We cannot review applications for admission until all required materials, including test scores, are on hand.

How can I ensure the Lindner College of Business receives my scores?

Before you begin your test, the system will ask you to list the schools to which you would like your scores to be sent.

What if I don't do as well as I would like on the test?

You may retake the test but you will need to register and pay the testing fee each time you retake the test. Details regarding how often you may retake the test are available here.

Will I be penalized for taking the test more than once?

No. In fact, the Lindner College of Business encourages taking the test a second time if necessary. We automatically use your highest total score when evaluating your application.

Are my scores still valid if I took the GRE/GMAT several years ago?

Scores are only valid for five years. If you took the test more than five years ago, you will need to retake the test.

Do I need to take the GMAT or GRE for admission into a Lindner graduate certificate program?

No, you do not need to provide a standardized test score as part of your application for admittance into Lindner College of Business certificate programs.

What MBA formats are available?

The UC Lindner College of Business MBA is available as a full-time, part-time, and a 100 percent online program. The full-time Lindner MBA is an accelerated one-year program. The part-time program can be completed in as few as 24 months.

Do I need to declare an MBA concentration? If so, when must it be declared?

It is optional to declare an MBA concentration. Students can choose from more than 20 MBA concentrations. You can obtain a concentration by taking 12 credit hours in a specific area or you can choose elective courses from multiple disciplines and not declare a concentration. The choice is entirely up to you. If you decide to declare a concentration, you do so in your final term of study.

When do classes begin?

Classes begin each fall, spring and summer semester. The University of Cincinnati academic calendar lists upcoming semester start dates.

How long does it take to complete the Master of Science in Business Analytics program?

The program can be completed in two semesters but many students use a third semester to complete the capstone project.

Is the Master of Science in Business Analytics a designated STEM Program?

Yes, the Master of Science in Business Analytics program has been officially designated as a STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering, and Mathematics) program. For more information on this, please review the STEM Education Coalition.

When is the application deadline?

Please visit the program's admission page for deadlines.

What does a recent entering class profile look like?

MS Business Analytics class of 2018:
Total students: 96
Total applications received: 466
Number of semesters: Two to three
Average undergraduate GPA: 3.53
Average GMAT score: 673
Average GRE score: 319
Average first year salary: $91,915 (2017-2018)
Employed within three months of graduation: 95% (2017-2018)
Average TOEFL score: 107
PhDs: One
Female students: 40%
Average age: 27
Average years of work experience: 4
International students: 81%, including students from China, India, Pakistan, and Vietnam.

MS Business Analytics historical class profile.
  2010 2011 2012 2013 2014 2015 2016 2017
Confirmations 27 42 42 68 87 93 87 86
International 48% 40% 57% 78% 71% 73% 73% 73%
Average GMAT 619 624 609 642 658 684 686 674
Average age 30 31 30 28 27 27 27 27
Average years work experience 5 6 6 4 3 4 4 4.2
Female 26% 38% 60% 25% 24% 29% 29% 27%

How does the Master of Science in Finance degree differ from an MBA degree?

The Lindner Master of Science in Finance program is for professionals who have a strong interest in finance and a desire to pursue a career as a finance professional. In contrast, the MBA degree is meant for individuals with leadership aspirations which require general management skills. The Master of Science in Finance program has a narrow focus on finance as opposed to  the broad exposure to all aspects of business (including finance, accounting, economics, marketing and management) supplied by the MBA curriculum.

What are the prerequisites for the Master of Science in Finance degree?

Information regarding the program prerequisites can be found here.

When is the earliest I can apply for the program?

One year before the start of your program.

When is the application deadline?

Information regarding upcoming application deadlines can be found on our graduate admission page.

Can full-time students begin the program in the spring semester?

No. At the current time, the Master of Science in Finance program is structured so that full-time students must start in the fall in order to complete all of the degree requirements within two semesters. Pre-term classes may be taken by full-time students during the summer prior to their fall start date.

Do I need an undergraduate degree in Finance in order to be accepted into the program?

No, the program welcomes applicants from all academic and professional backgrounds. Please note that students without an undergraduate business degree may be required to take additional business foundational courses. Information regarding the program curriculum is available here.

How quantitative is the MS Finance Program?

We strive to produce graduates of the MS Finance program who are technical professionals with sound business knowledge. Therefore, the MS Finance program at the University of Cincinnati is primarily a quantitative program. It focuses on the core aspects of financial theory such as asset pricing, risk management, valuation, and capital budgeting and as such, it requires greater technical sophistication than many other business disciplines. That being said, the MS Finance program is not a “computational finance" or “financial engineering” program that emphasizes advanced programming skills or solving problems via numerical methods. However, our students do have the opportunity to take highly technical courses from the University of Cincinnati’s business analytics, computer science and/or mathematics departments.

Do I need to take the business background courses before I apply to the program?

No, the business foundational courses may be taken as part of your program curriculum but some prerequisite classes must be completed before you can take some of your core or “focus area” classes. Information regarding the curriculum prerequisites and requirements is available here.

Do I need work experience in order to qualify for admission?

No, there is no specified minimum work experience requirement for admission into the program.

Do I need to take the GRE or the GMAT?

A standardized test score is required for most applicants but you can choose which test to take. If you have a terminal degree (such as a PhD or JD), the standardized test requirement will be waived.

What is the program’s minimum GRE/GMAT score?

The Master of Science in Finance does not have a minimum GMAT or GRE test score required for admission as we carefully examine each applicant’s overall profile, including their undergraduate performance, GMAT/GRE score, work experience, letters of recommendation, and extracurricular activities. That being said, many of our applicants have a GMAT score in excess of 600.

What is a "good" GRE/GMAT score for the MS Finance program?

We consider the verbal and quantitative standardized test scores separately and they are only part of the applicant file which we fully review for each candidate. For the Master of Science in Finance program, a GRE/GMAT score is generally considered “good” if the quantitative score is at or above the 85th percentile. Most of our applicants achieve a GMAT score above 600.

Are there any scholarships or graduate assistant positions available?

Yes. Please note that we do not award full scholarships (tuition waiver) to any student. We expect students to join the program because they value the outstanding education that we provide and the exceptional career opportunities that are available to graduates of our program. The amount of financial aid available varies annually, as does the competition for it. In addition to having excellent credentials, timeliness of the application is important. The priority application date for financial aid is March 15.

What does the admissions committee look for?

The admissions committee looks for candidates with an academic background that demonstrates strong intellectual capability, clear professional goals in the finance industry, references that support your professional goals and intellectual abilities, and strong verbal and quantitative standardized (GMAT/GRE) scores.

How many classes does the average student take each semester?

We recommend that full-time students take five or six courses (usually 15 credits) per semester. The University of Cincinnati Master of Science in Finance program is designed to be completed in two semesters with students taking five courses each semester. Please note that international students are generally required to carry a full course load in order to maintain their immigration status.

How long does it take to complete the degree requirements?

The program is designed to be completed by full-time students in two semesters. Students who have not already satisfied the prerequisites will need to satisfy those prior to beginning the program.

Can I earn the MS-Finance degree as a part-time student?

Yes. Of course, the pace at which part-time students progress towards their degree vary with their individual situations. By taking an average of six hours per semester, a part-time student can finish the program in five (5) semesters. If classes are taken during the summer as well, a part-time student could begin during the fall semester and finish during the second spring semester (about 20 months). Students who have not already satisfied the prerequisite requirements or who take fewer hours per semester will obviously take a little longer to complete the program.

Is it possible to combine the MS Finance program with the Lindner MBA program or another specialized master’s degree to form a dual-degree program?

Yes, the Lindner College of Business does offer dual degree programs. In order to be admitted to a dual degree program, you must apply to both programs of interest and secure admission to both programs. You can also apply for the dual degree program after joining the MS Finance program and complete the second degree program after graduating from the MS Finance program.

Are internships/co-ops required for the Master of Science in Information Systems program?

Yes. All full-time students Master of Science in Information Systems students are expected to complete a minimum of six months of co-op work.

What is a co-op?

Co-op is an abbreviation of cooperative education. The University of Cincinnati is the global birthplace of cooperative education. UC introduced cooperative education in 1906. The MS-IS co-op requires full-time students to spend a minimum of two semesters (six months) working full-time in an IS position.

How do I get a co-op position?

Obtaining a co-op/internship is very much like obtaining a full-time job, and it will be up to you to obtain the position. We will, however, do all we can to help you get placed through partnerships we have with companies and through resources provided by the Lindner College of Business Career Services office. Co-op positions would typically pay about 50% of a full-time position. A few of our students have had their co-ops extended since they proved very valuable to the projects they were involved in and their employers were not ready to have them leave before their projects were completed.

When do I start the co-op?

Students typically start their co-op experience in the summer term at the end of the first academic year.

What is the duration of the co-op?

The co-op must last a minimum of six months. Longer co-ops are possible based on an individual student's interests and the co-op opportunities that are available.

Will I be paid during the co-op?

Co-op positions are paid. Co-op positions typically pay $18-22/hr. Thus, a six month co-op will typically result in an earning of $18,000-$22,000 for the student. Most students save a portion of this income to use toward their tuition after their co-op and to pay student loans. Please note that co-op placement is not guaranteed.

Am I guaranteed co-op placement?

No. Obtaining a co-op is very much like getting a job – you have to successfully interview for the position and land the job.  More than 98% of our Master of Science in Information Systems students find co-op positions each year.

What is UC's co-op placement record?

The MS IS program has a co-op placement record greater than 98%, but this should not be taken as a guarantee that future students will maintain the same co-op placement record.

What are the prerequisites for the MS IS degree?

The only requirement is that applicants have completed a bachelor's degree in any discipline.

Do I need an undergraduate degree in Computer Science or MIS or Engineering to be accepted into the program?

No, we accept applicants from all academic and professional backgrounds. Some of our most successful students have had backgrounds in fields as diverse as music and Spanish.

When is the earliest I can apply for the program?

One year before the start of the program.

When is the application deadline?

Please visit our admissions page for complete information on admission requirements and deadlines.

How technical is the MS IS Program?

The MS IS program at the University of Cincinnati is primarily a technical program. It focuses on the core aspects of Information Systems such as systems development, network design, data modeling, ERP, etc. That being said, as the program resides within the Lindner College of Business, students are offered business courses which help them increase their business acumen. Graduates of the MS IS program become technical professionals with sound business knowledge.

Do I need to take the business background courses before I apply to the program?

No. If you have completed courses in the business foundational subjects as part of your undergraduate program, those requirements may be waived

Do I need work experience in order to qualify for admission?

There is no specified minimum work experience requirement for this program.

Do I need to take the GRE or the GMAT?

Yes, a standardized test score is required as part of the application process but we accept results from either test. Please note that we will waive the test requirement for University of Cincinnati alumni who graduated with a cumulative GPA of 3.5 or higher and for individuals who have earned a terminal degree (such as a PhD or JD).

What is the minimum GRE/GMAT score for acceptance to the program?

We do not have a specified minimum score for acceptance into the program. That being said, our students’ average GRE score  is around 320 and our students’ average GMAT score is around 670. We do consider the verbal and quantitative scores separately. In making admission decisions, we carefully examine each student’s overall profile including his/her undergraduate performance, GMAT or GRE scores, work experience, letters of  recommendation, and extracurricular involvement.

Are there any scholarships or graduate assistant positions available?

Yes. Please note that we do not award full scholarships (tuition waiver) to any student. We expect students to join our program because they value the outstanding education we provide and the exceptional career opportunities that are available to graduates of our program. We award  a limited number of partial scholarships and assistantships and these go to our top incoming students. We occasionally have a few additional scholarships that are available in the spring semester and they are awarded based on performance in the MS IS program during the fall semester. Assistantships require students to work for 10-20 hours per week and provide a stipend ranging from $4,500-$10,000/year. Assistantships are typically awarded upon arrival for the start of the program. Our scholarship and assistantship award recipients typically have GRE or GMAT scores in the 80th percentile or higher on both the Verbal and Quantitative sections and those students also have an outstanding academic record and/or exceptional work experience. A few of our students have successfully obtained assistantships with other departments after arriving at the University of Cincinnati but additional assistantship opportunities cannot be guaranteed. All full-time program applicants are automatically considered for scholarship and assistantship awards. Assistantships and scholarships are independently awarded.

What does the admissions committee look for?

The admissions committee considers the overall profile of each candidate including his or her undergraduate performance, GMAT or GRE scores, work experience, letters of recommendation, and extracurricular involvement before making an admission decision.

How many classes does a student typically take each semester?

We recommend that full-time students take nine courses (18 credits) each semester. Please note that each semester is divided into two seven-week sessions. International students are required to carry a full load in order to maintain their immigration status.

How long will it take to complete my degree requirements?

The Master of Science in Information Systems academic program can be completed in two semesters with any remaining courses completed during the six-month paid internship/co-op period. Each student’s actual time to degree will depend on the workload an individual student carries, his or her prior academic preparation and the duration of his or her co-op/internship.

Is it possible to earn a joint MSIS/MBA degree or to combine the MS IS degree with another specialized master’s degree?

Yes. In order to be admitted to the dual degree program, you must apply to both programs of interest and secure admission to both programs. You can also apply for the dual degree after joining the MS IS program and then complete the MBA or second MS degree after graduating from the MS IS program.

How do I apply for this program?

You can apply online via the University of Cincinnati Graduate School.

Can I contact current students?

If you wish to communicate with current students in the MS IS program, you can do so by sending an email to msis@uc.edu.

Where do I send my transcripts?

Please do not send transcripts prior to receiving admission into the program. Visit the admissions link for details.

Is the Master of Science in Information Systems a designated STEM program?

The Master of Science in Information Systems program has been officially designated as a STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering, and Mathematics) program. For more information on the designation, please view the STEM Education Coalition.

How does the Master of Science in Marketing degree differ from an MBA degree?

An MBA degree from the University of Cincinnati provides you with a graduate-level portfolio of learning in all aspects of business, including finance, accounting, economics, and management. The Master of Science in Marketing program is structured to concentrate on the breadth and depth of learning and experience available in marketing and marketing-related areas. For those who are interested in a degree that concentrates solely on marketing, the Master of Science in Marketing is the more appropriate program

I do not have a business background. How will this affect my chances of getting accepted to the Master of Science in Marketing program?

Students in the Master of Science in Marketing program come from a variety of backgrounds. While some of our students do have undergraduate business degrees, many others have degrees and experience in sociology, design, liberal arts and political science, to name a few. The diversity of background provides a richer and fuller shared experience for all Master of Science in Marketing students.

Can full-time students begin studies only in the Fall semester?

Students may begin and end the Master of Science in Marketing program in any semester. Students typically start in the fall semester, but it is not required. Some students prefer to start in the spring or summer terms in order to complete a few Basic Business Knowledge courses.

What are the minimum GMAT or GRE scores you will accept?

The Master of Science in Marketing program has developed a reputation for accepting students with strong standardized test scores. Score averages can be found on the entrance exams page

What is the minimum acceptable GPA for admission?

In general, the University of Cincinnati considers a grade point average (GPA) of 3.0 or higher to be a minimum competitive score for acceptance into the MS Marketing program. Once accepted into the Master of Science in Marketing program, students must maintain a GPA of at least 3.0 to prevent being placed on academic probation.

What is the deadline for admission?

Please visit our admissions page for detailed information on admission requirements and deadlines.