Frequently Asked Questions

Frequently Asked Questions for Admissions

What are the application deadlines for Leavey’s online programs?

The Online MBA, MS in Marketing, MS in Finance and Analytics, and MS in Business Analytics programs each operate on a quarterly schedule. Current application deadlines for all four programs can be found here.

Is the GMAT/GRE required before I apply?

The GMAT or GRE is a required component of all our online graduate business programs. However, waivers are available for qualified applicants to the Online MBA, MS in Marketing, MS in Finance and Analytics, and MS in Business Analytics.. For more information, contact an Admissions Outreach Advisor at 844-554-2425.

The GMAT/GRE must be taken prior to the deadline for which you are applying, and we do not allow for conditional acceptance while applicants prepare for the exam. We recommend that you plan to take the GMAT/GRE at least one month prior to the application deadline to allow time for scores to arrive.

Am I required to come to campus for an interview?

An admission interview is required, and you will be contacted to schedule one once your application materials have been received. Because applicants to our online programs are located across the country, we do not require that interviews be conducted in person. Interviews may be conducted via the web-based video conferencing application Zoom or by telephone if you are not local to the Bay Area.

Do you offer conditional acceptance?

We do not offer conditional acceptance under any circumstances.

What constitutes a completed application, and do I need to have all my documents together before sending them to Santa Clara University?

A completed application includes:

An application will not go into final review with the Admissions Committee until all admissions materials are submitted through the online application portal.

Please note that hard-copy official transcripts should not be sent directly to the university unless absolutely necessary. We strongly prefer electronic official transcripts delivered by your institution to

*Unofficial GMAT or GRE scores and unofficial/in-progress transcripts are acceptable for the initial admissions process. However, should you decide to enroll in our program, official documents are required before the first day of class.

Is there a preference between the GMAT or the GRE?

While the GMAT (Graduate Management Admission Test) is often considered the standard entrance exam used for business schools, the GRE (Graduate Record Examination) is also accepted. We do not prefer one exam over the other. Scores from either test are valid for five (5) years. Applicants are welcome to take either exam more than once; we will only consider the highest score.

I have little professional work experience. Am I eligible to apply to Santa Clara's online graduate business programs?

We prefer that applicants to the Online MBA program have at least three years of professional work experience. However applications are evaluated holistically, and all interested students with a bachelor's degree are eligible to apply.

There is no required minimum work experience for the Online MS in Marketing, MS in Finance and Analytics, and MS in Business Analytics programs.

What is the difference between the on-campus MBA program and the Online MBA?

The Online MBA program features a unique Silicon Valley Professional (SVP) dashboard, which is designed to help students monitor their development in four domains of expertise, facilitate self-reflection of individual strengths and weaknesses, and track their participation in eight required co-curricular activities. Students can also use the dashboard to solicit feedback from faculty and peers, and comments provided are automatically archived within the dashboard for future reference.

Upon completing the program, the SVP dashboard provides Online MBA students with a comprehensive e-portfolio of research artifacts, professional development experiences, faculty and peer reviews, and more. This differentiating feature is available only through the Online MBA program.

Learn more about the SVP dashboard here.

Will my diploma state “Online” before the degree name?

Your Santa Clara University diploma will specify that you have completed a Master of Business Administration or a Master of Science in Marketing, Finance and Analytics, or Business Analytics. There will be no indication that you completed the degree program online.

Is there an international immersion experience?

While our online programs do not offer an international immersion experience, ongoing opportunities for peer-to-peer networking, professional development events, and regional company tours are available to all students.

What networking opportunities are available to online students at SCU?

Santa Clara’s online graduate business programs provide extensive opportunities for students to network with each other, faculty, Silicon Valley-area professionals, and program alumni. These opportunities include quarterly company tours, case study competitions, student clubs, and other activities. “Leavey News & Notes,” which is a monthly newsletter distributed to all Leavey students, provides an overview of upcoming events, specialty courses, company visits, and student development organizations.

To learn more about networking opportunities associated with our online programs and to download the “Leavey News & Notes” newsletter, please visit the networking page here.

What are the demographics of current Online MBA students?

According to data sourced directly from our current online student population, our Online MBA program includes the following demographics:

  • 46% female
  • 54% male
  • 29% earned an undergraduate degree in business
  • 18% earned an undergraduate degree in a liberal arts field
  • The average student age is 29 years
  • 81% specified career advancement as their primary reason for pursuing the program
  • 27% are currently employed in the technology sector
  • 14% are currently employed in the finance sector
  • 11% are currently employed in the manufacturing/automotive/aerospace sector

When do the required on-campus components take place for each program?

For Online MBA students, the first three-day residency weekend will take place immediately before you begin your first course, and the second will take place during your final quarter.

For Online MS in Marketing, MS in Finance and Analytics, and MS in Business Analytics students, the three-day on-campus residency weekend will take place immediately before your first term begins.

Learn more about the Online MBA, Online MS in Marketing, Online MS in Finance and Analytics, and Online MS in Business Analytics residency weekends.

What kind of weekly time commitment do these programs require?

Our online graduate business programs are considered part-time programs and thus require approximately 20 hours of work per week, which includes time spent with lectures, research, and coursework.

Is it possible to complete these programs while also working full-time?

All of the online graduate business programs have been designed with working professionals in mind. Course content is delivered asynchronously, which allows you to log in, view lectures and assignments, and submit required work as your schedule allows.

Approximately how many courses should I expect to complete each year?

Online MBA courses at Santa Clara include a combination of 4-unit, 10-week courses and consecutively taught 2-unit, 5-week courses. Students should expect to complete 12 units in their first quarter and 8-10 units in each quarter thereafter.

The Online MS in Marketing comprises three 2-unit “business foundations” courses, three 4-unit “marketing core” courses, and nine 2-unit elective courses, and it can be completed in as little as one year.

The Online MS in Finance and Analytics consists of 6 core courses totaling 20 units, 12 units of electives, and a four-unit experiential learning course. It can be completed in as little as one year.

The Online MS in Business Analytics includes 8 core courses totaling 32 units and 10 additional elective units. It can be completed in just over one year.

View the complete list course descriptions for each program:

If coursework is delivered asynchronously, how will I interact with my cohort peers?

Leveraging key features in our online learning management system, students in our online programs can expect to collaborate and converse with their cohort peers primarily through video conferencing, live chat, discussion boards, and email messages related to course assignments. Similarly, faculty will communicate with students through these same venues, with scheduled phone conversations available upon request.

In addition to these ongoing interactions, students will have the opportunity to interface with their cohort peers during their program’s on-campus component.

Online MBA students who reside in or are visiting the Bay Area also will have the opportunity to participate in company tours, which are hosted by their cohort peers and available exclusively to Online MBA students.

Why do online students have to be vaccinated?

The university wants to make sure that ALL of our students are healthy and safe. Online students can come to campus anytime to enjoy the gym, bookstore, library, study rooms, faculty office hours, career fairs, networking events, access to Evening MBA courses, etc. It was intentional when we launched our Online programs, that we offered the same curriculum, same faculty, same networking opportunities, same access to campus, and the same degree as our on-campus counterparts.

Unfortunately, we cannot track who comes to campus and who does not come to campus, so the University made it a requirement that all students have to be vaccinated. There is a medical exemption available. Please take a look at the vaccine faqs page if that option is one you want to pursue; the details are laid out there. We wish you continued good health.
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Are you looking to take your career to the next level? Earn your master’s degree online with Santa Clara University. Online programs through the Leavey School of Business offer you the best of traditional on-campus programs with unparalleled flexibility. Get inspired and join in SCU’s legacy of ethics and innovation no matter where you live and work.

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Preferred Deadline
April 18
Summer 2024 Term
Priority Deadline
May 5
Summer 2024 Term
Application Deadline
May 25
Summer 2024 Term
Next Start
June 17
Summer 2024 Term
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