Business professionals at a meeting
Master of
Business Administration

How to Apply


Begin the graduate school application

Applicants who are in the military qualify for an application fee waiver. Contact us at [email protected] to request the military fee waiver code.

Deadlines and Important Dates

  • Summer DeadlineApply by March 15 to start May 9
  • Fall DeadlineApply by May 15 to start August 15
  • Spring DeadlineApply by November 1, 2023, to start January 8, 2024

We strongly encourage applicants to aim for the posted deadlines for the best chance of securing a spot in their intake of choice. We will, however, continue to review applications and admit candidates on a rolling basis after the deadlines, as long as space is available.

Applicants are encouraged to submit all portfolio items as early as possible.

Admissions Help

If you have questions about the admissions process, contact our admissions counselors.

Our Typical Student 

Penn State Online MBA students come from a variety of backgrounds. If you're curious what types of qualifications our applicants usually have, take a look at these student body profile statistics (numbers are averages):

  • Work Experience: 7–10 years post-undergraduate full-time work experience
  • Undergraduate Cumulative GPA: 3.3
  • Percentage of Women: 34%
  • Percentage of Military and Veteran: 20%
  • States Represented: 30+

Admissions Requirements 

For admission to the Graduate School, an applicant must hold either (1) a baccalaureate degree from a regionally accredited U.S. institution or (2) a tertiary (postsecondary) degree that is deemed comparable to a four-year bachelor's degree from a regionally accredited U.S. institution. This degree must be from an officially recognized degree-granting institution in the country in which it operates.

The Penn State Online MBA is suitable for individuals of diverse academic and professional backgrounds and requires no prerequisite course work. However, previous course work in accounting, economics, math, and statistics, or knowledge of these subjects gained through work experience, adds to the strength of your application portfolio. Additionally, post-undergraduate, full-time work experience is strongly recommended and preferred. Course success will rely heavily on the ability to apply real-world experience to academic concepts and teamwork.

What You Need

Applications are submitted electronically and include a nonrefundable application fee. Applicants who are in the military qualify for an application fee waiver. Contact us to request the military fee waiver code. You will need to upload the following items as part of your application:

Official transcripts from each institution attended, regardless of the number of credits or semesters completed — Transcripts not in English must be accompanied by a certified translation. Penn State alumni do not need to request transcripts for credits earned at Penn State but must list Penn State as part of your academic history. If you are admitted, you will be asked to send an additional official transcript. You will receive instructions at that time.

GRE/GMAT scores are not required and will not be accepted.

English Proficiency — The language of instruction at Penn State is English. With some exceptions, international applicants must take and submit scores for the Test of English as a Foreign Language (TOEFL) or International English Language Testing System (IELTS). Minimum test scores and exceptions are found in the English Proficiency section on the Graduate School's "Requirements for Graduate Admission" page. Visit the TOEFL website for testing information. Penn State's institutional code is 2660.

References (2) — You will need to initiate the process through the online application by entering names, email addresses, and mailing addresses of two references (preferably professional). Upon submission of your application, an email will be sent to each reference requesting they complete a brief online recommendation regarding your commitment for success in an online program. Please inform all recommenders they must submit the form in order for your application to be complete.  

Program-Specific Questions/Materials

Résumé — You will upload your résumé (one to two pages) to the online application. A minimum of two years of professional experience is strongly preferred, with emphasis on post-undergraduate, full-time work experience. Internships and other experiences will be considered holistically but are not considered as part of the work experience minimum recommendation.

Essay Response — Submit one document with your answers to short-answer essay questions (50–100 words each) to allow the admissions committee to get to know more about you and to differentiate yourself from the competition. You should respond to these prompts:

  • What unique contribution can you offer in a team-based, collaborative online MBA program?
  • What is the most difficult constructive criticism you ever received and how did you act on it? Please provide a specific example.
  • Is there anything else that you’d like us to know that we can’t see anywhere else in your application?
  • How do you define grit? Provide a specific example of a time you demonstrated grit.

Online Interview — For the purpose of ensuring a good fit between the program and the student, the committee may want to gather additional information from the applicant not available in the written application materials. An online interview may be requested by the admissions committee on a case-by-case basis.

Start Your Application

You can begin your online application at any time. Your progress within the online application system will be saved as you go, allowing you to return at any point as you gather additional information and required materials. Your admission will be considered once your application portfolio is complete.

Begin the graduate school application

  • Choose Enrollment Type: "Degree Admission"
  • Choose "WORLD CAMPUS" as the campus

Checking Your Status

You can check the status of your application by using the same login information established for the online application form.

Technical Requirements 

A computer is required for this program. You must have administrator rights on the machine that enables you to install new software. While our core courses are designed to operate using either Windows or iOS, concentration courses may require software that is compatible only with Windows. Please contact the program office at [email protected] for more information about specific concentration requirements.

Please review the other technical requirements for this degree program.

Penn State World Campus Graduate

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