Master of Science in Business Administration

Applicants may apply for admission to begin the program in the summer term or the fall or spring semesters.

The MS BUSAD is a very selective program. In addition to holding a traditional M.B.A.** from a reputable institution, successful applicants will have earned a GPA of 3.3 or higher in their M.B.A. course work, will have achieved a score in at least the 80th percentile on the GMAT or the GRE, and will have at least three years of full-time work experience in positions of significant responsibility. 

**  (Visit the FAQ page for details.)

For International students who did not spend 4 years completing a bachelor's degree at an American, British, Canadian or Australian college or university, proof of proficiency in English is required for admission. We accept scores from any of the following tests. (Only one is required. The minimums listed are not flexible.) Test scores are considered valid only if earned within 2 years of the applicant's intended first day of classes at USC.

  • The TOEFL (Test of English as a Foreign Language) with a score of at least 100 with no less than 20 on each of the four test components. 
  • The PTE (Pearson Test of English - Academic) with a minimum score of 70.
  • The IELTS (preferred) with a score of 7, with no less than 6 on each band score. 

Applicants are also evaluated in terms of their competitiveness within the current Marshall M.B.A. applicant pool. In their review of applications, admissions committees consider all the applicant's completed academic work, test scores, evidence of leadership and motivation, work history and level of job responsibility, and unique talents and contributions.

Additionally, it is absolutely critical that the applicant present a clear picture of his/her goals and a coherent, cohesive discussion of how the program will help achieve those goals.

Applicants interested in a very specific area of emphasis are encouraged to review the full list of specialized master’s programs offered by the Marshall School of Business before applying for admission to this program. Those interested in accounting or a strong accounting focus should apply for admission to either the Master of Accounting program or the Master of Business Taxation program. Master of Science programs are available in the following: Business Analytics, Entrepreneurship and Innovation, Finance, Marketing, Social Entrepreneurship, and Global Supply Chain Management.


A complete application includes the following:

  • Completed on-line application
  • Official Graduate Management Admission Test (GMAT) or GRE scores no more than 5 years old.
  • Resume.
  • Responses to required essay questions.
  • A nonrefundable application fee (waived for current USC students, USC staff, and USC alumni - see the FAQ page).
  • One official transcript from the registrar of each college or university attended received in an envelope sealed by the issuing institution. If all college or postgraduate work has not been completed, transcripts must be sent again when work in progress is completed and the degree is posted. Transcripts written in languages other than English must be accompanied by a certified English translation. For more information visit
  • Degree verification: Applicants who completed degrees at institutions outside of the United States are advised to submit documents verifying their degrees through the International Education Research Foundation ( Please visit IERF web site for details about required documents and fees. Use the USC link above to receive a USC discount.
  • International applicants must also submit scores from a TOEFL, IELTS, or PTE test taken no more than 2 years old prior to the anticipated first day of class plus verification of sufficient financial support. International applicants are advised to see the instructions for International Students published in the USC Graduate Admissions web site

To ensure adequate time to receive an admission decision, it is important to send completed application materials well in advance of the semester for which the applicant wishes to register.

The Application Process

Submit an on-line application to the MS BUSAD program (code 45) through the USC Graduate Admissions web site at International applicants are advised to see the Checklist for International Students published in the USC Graduate Admissions web site.

  • Current USC students and USC MBA alumni are not required to submit an application fee, new GMAT scores, or transcripts to verify degrees earned prior to their attendance at USC. Visit the FAQ page for details.
  • Applicants who completed the MBA at an institution other than USC must submit all application documentation identified in the instructions including the application fee, official test scores and transcripts.

GMAT scores must be issued directly to USC by the GMAT testing service using the Marshall MBA school code - 389-9C-23. The GRE code for USC Marshall is 4852. Scores must be from tests taken within the last five years.

TOEFL test scores must be sent by the Educational Testing Service directly to USC school code 4852


  • Unofficial copies of transcripts must be submitted as uploaded attachments to the online application.
  • For expedited processing, official transcripts in envelopes sealed by the issuing institution may be sent to

          USC Master of Science in Business Administration
          c/o Sara McLachlan
          BRI 200C, USC
          3670 Trousdale Parkway
          Los Angeles, CA 90089-0806

For application deadlines refer to the Dates and Deadlines page of this web site.

For additional information contact or call (213) 740-3198.