Frequently Asked Questions
I've never taken a business or computer science class. Are there prerequisites or subjects I should study before starting the program to be successful?
There are no prerequisite courses required to be successful in the MSMA. The subject knowledge students need will be covered in each class and build from one semester to another. Our goal is student success and we provide you everything you need to succeed within the program.
When can I start the MSMA program?
The MSMA program admits students once a year for Fall semester which begins in early September.
How long does it take to complete the MSMA Program?
The MSMA program can be completed over the course of 9 or 21 months. The curriculum is the same regardless of the timeline you choose. The only difference is the number of classes you take per term.
If I complete the degre in 9-months how much time a week will I spend "in class"?
The MSMA is a high touch predominately asynchronous program. In the online track, with the exception of BMMA 577, each classes will consist of asynchronous work coupled with a one-hour a week synchronous evening class meeting with the faculty member. A student on the 9-month track would take four classes per term meaning they will have four hours of synchronous class meetings each week. The exception, BMMA 577, is a synchronous class in the Fall semester that meets on Monday’s from 6-9:30pm
The hybrid track takes the same classes but one class per term is held on-campus. This allows students who are looking for a bit more time and face-to-face contact with faculty.
Students completing the program in 21-months will simply split those time requirements in half (two-hours of synchronous class time) each term.
Is the MSMA STEM designated?
Yes, the MSMA is STEM designated! This designation provides an added benefit for international students. After graduation international students will be eligible for three years of Optional Practical Training (OPT).
What software will we learn in the program?
The faculty who teach in the MSMA program work with industry leaders to stay up to date on the latest technology and systems they’re looking for in future job candidates to make sure our graduates are competitive in any company. Through our close connection with the Puget Sound Research Forum and our MSMA alumni we’ve learned that most companies do not use high priced analytics software. To our surprise they’ve reported that Excel is the most widely used software used in most research settings. Those industry professionals are looking for analysts who can use Excel at an expert-level and have familiarity with R, C++ and Python. Our students have the opportunity to work with faculty on learning about other analytic software if they’re interested but our program concentrates on the software and languages our industry partners are looking for.
Is there a thesis required at the end of the program?
No, there’s no final thesis however there is a Culminating Client Project that spans the last two semesters. Our students work with industry contacts to develop a research questions and gather real industry data to answer those questions. Finishing the final semester with a client presentation and report provides our graduates transferable industry experience for their resumes.
I work full-time, can I still complete the MSMA?
Yes! The online program is predominately asynchronous which allows you the flexibility to fit your classwork around your work schedule. Most classes will have a one-hour synchronous class meeting each week. Those meetings are always scheduled in the evenings after 6pm. While the timeline for completing your degree is completely up to you we do recommend that students who are working full-time consider completing the degree over 21-month to ensure they get the most out of the program.
I see that the MSMA is offered online or in a hybrid modality. Are there opportunities to meet with the faculty in-person if I want to?
Yes! The faculty who teach in the MSMA program also teach in our undergraduate Business program. That means that they are here on campus and holding regular office hours. They are always happy to schedule in-person meetings with students who ask.