Master of Business Administration (MBA)

About the program

The online Master of Business Administration (MBA) program at Seattle Pacific University is a management degree that provides you with the skills and knowledge necessary to excel in today’s complex and changing business environment.

The MBA program enhances your past academic work and professional experience, preparing you for higher levels of responsibility. It is intended primarily for the working professional who has achieved a meaningful level of career success following the baccalaureate degree. As you now recognize the need to develop and expand your knowledge and expertise in the management area, this program enables you to become more effective in current responsibilities or to open opportunities for new responsibilities.

Seattle Pacific’s School of Business, Government, and Economics is committed to providing you with an applied, experiential, and collaborative learning environment in which business and Christian faith, ethics, and character are integrated. The objectives of the program are to develop your abilities to do the following:

  • Provide values-based leadership from a general-management perspective.
  • Think and act strategically under conditions of rapid change and uncertainty.
  • Effectively manage organizations through developing people and integrating business processes with information technology.
  • Apply in-depth knowledge in one of the following areas: management of business processes, human resources, finance, information systems management, or e-business.
  • Communicate effectively, work in teams, use information technology, and self-assess personal abilities, strengths, and weaknesses. 


The MBA program develops your readiness to act as a purpose-driven, cross-functional leader. The 45 credit curriculum consists of advanced and elective courses. It presumes prior learning in the foundations of business. All MBA courses are 3 quarter credits. A minimum of 45 credits must be earned, at least 36 of which must be completed at SPU. That is, you may transfer a maximum of three courses (9 credits) from other AACSB accredited institutions with the approval of the SBGE associate dean for graduate programs.

Advanced courses

Your advanced courses, 30 credit hours, develop a whole enterprise view. You may not fulfill these courses by undergraduate coursework; transfer credit from other institutions will be given only for graduate-level courses covering the same body of knowledge. 

Elective courses

By selecting specific sets of elective courses, you can tailor the degree to meet your individual needs, whether more integrative or more functional specialization oriented, according to your career interests.

Current emphasis areas include:

  • Data analytics
  • Cyber security
  • Management
  • Finance
  • Human resources
  • Information systems management
  • Social and sustainable enterprise

Prerequisite foundation courses and SKILLS

Prerequisite business foundation coursework includes 27 credits — BUS 6110, 6120, 6130, 6132, 6140, 6150, 6164, 6170, 6171. This coursework may be satisfied by prior coursework or may be completed at SPU. Possession of the Microsoft Office® User Certificate in Excel® is also a prerequisite .

In the following circumstances, your coursework completed at the undergraduate level prior to admission to the program may fulfill one or more of the business foundation courses.

If you earned a bachelor’s degree within seven years* of admission to the program that included courses covering the same body of knowledge as foundations courses:

  • Courses in which you earned a minimum grade of “B” may fulfill foundation courses with comparable content.
  • A course taken for pass/no credit cannot fulfill a foundation course requirement.
  • To fulfill the BUS 6170 requirement, a course must have been completed with a minimum grade of “B” within three years of admission to the MBA program.

If you completed a bachelor’s degree more than seven years prior to admission to the program, or if the grade in the undergraduate course is below “B” but not below “C+”:

  • You may take a competency examination in the subject.
  • Competency tests must be completed within the year following your date of admission to the program.
  • If the competency examination is successfully completed, the applicable foundation course will be considered fulfilled.
  • If you do not successfully complete the competency exam, you must take the graduate course or complete it via credit by examination for which tuition and an examination fee are charged.

Graduate Certificates

In addition to the degree these graduate certificates will be awarded upon completion of each certificate’s courses at SPU with at least a B in each course.

  • Foundations: Financial Reporting and Analysis (BUS 6130, 6132, 6120)
  • Foundations: Creating and Distributing Value (BUS 6150, 6164, 6170)
  • Foundations: Understanding Business Contexts (BUS 6110, 6140, 6171)
  • Responsible Leadership (BUS 6201, 6202, 6260, 6266)

Admission requirements

Generally, you must have at least a 3.0 GPA in your undergraduate studies, at least a 500 GMAT total score (25V, 30Q, and 4.4AW) and evidence of at least one year of continuous, full-time, substantive work experience after receipt of the bachelor’s degree on your résumé.

Applicants must submit the following:

  • Online application and $50 application fee.
  • Current résumé as evidence of a substantive work experience. You will need at least one full year, continuous full-time, post-bachelor’s degree experience at the time of application. More is preferred. This is a significant factor in the admission decision process. Applicants with less than one year of post-baccalaureate professional work experience, but who are otherwise strong candidates and are currently employed in a meaningful professional role, may be considered.
  • Official transcript from colleges or universities attended. Include the transcript from the institution that granted your bachelor’s degree with the posted degree appearing on the transcript. Also send official transcripts for all institutions attended following your undergraduate degree, as well as any other schools where you earned credits that may be used to request fulfillment of business foundation courses.
  • GMAT (Graduate Management Admission Test) scores. GMAT scores above 500 (25 verbal; 30 quantitative; 4.4 analytical writing) are preferred. For the GMAT, the SPU school code is C9FD273.
    • The GMAT requirement is waived for applicants with a cumulative GPA of 3.5; a cumulative GPA of 3.25 or above and three years of post-baccalaureate professional work experience; or, a cumulative GPA of 3.0 and at least five years of post-baccalaureate professional work experience. The GMAT is also waived for applicants already possessing an advanced degree from an accredited university.
  • Personal statement (3–4 pages) responding to the essay questions listed in the online application.
  • Two professional letters of recommendation listed in the online application (optional).

Language Proficiency

SPU considers you to be a native English speaker if both your primary and secondary education took place in Australia, Canada (other than Quebec), Great Britain, Ireland, New Zealand, or the United States (other than Puerto Rico).

If you are a non-native English speaker, you will need to demonstrate English proficiency, regardless of English language studies or academic history.

To demonstrate language proficiency, submit:

  • an official TOEFL score of at least 86 on the iBT
  • an official IELTS score of at least 6.5, or
  • an official Duolingo score of 110.

Otherwise, strong applicants with a TOEFL score of 68-85 (IELTS 6.0) may be probationally or conditionally admitted with the requirement to successfully complete SPU approved ESL coursework prior to or at the outset of enrollment and continuing as needed.

You may be exempted from the English proficiency testing requirement if you have earned baccalaureate or advanced degrees at Seattle Pacific University, at another regionally accredited college or university in the U.S., or at an accredited university in Australia, Canada (other than Quebec), Great Britain, Ireland, or New Zealand.

International applicants

The MBA program is delivered in the online format. It is available for international students who plan to learn while remaining in their home country. It is not available for students seeking to attend in the U.S. on an F-1 visa.

In addition to the requirements above, international students must submit a course-by-course transcript evaluation for any non-U.S. transcripts from World Education Services (WES) or Foundation for International Services Inc. (FIS). (A course-by-course evaluation is needed to determine if any pre-requisite foundations have been satisfied.) 

All official transcripts must be submitted in English. International applicants are responsible for all costs associated with translation.

Application deadlines

Your application for admission, application fee, and personal statement must be received by the dates listed below. Recommendation letters, transcripts and test scores must arrive before an admission decision can be made.

  • Autumn Quarter: August 1 
  • Winter Quarter: November 1
  • Spring Quarter: February 1
  • Summer: May 1

Prequalified students

Qualified individuals may take up to five courses if they have an undergraduate degree (as evidenced by an official transcript from an accredited institution); a minimum cumulative undergraduate grade point average (GPA) of 3.0; and a minimum of one year full-time post-baccalaureate work experience (as evidenced by a current résumé).

Prequalified students must apply for admission to take additional courses. Prequalified status does not guarantee full admission at a later date.


Admission materials should be directed to Graduate Admissions. If you have questions, please contact the SBGE graduate program coordinator: