Graduate and Professional Programs

Master of Science in Finance Program FAQs

Program Overview
Quantitative Specialization

Frequently Asked Questions for MS Finance students are presented here, divided into the categories:

  • What is the difference between the MBA and the MS in Finance programs?

    The Bauer MBA program is comprised of 48 semester hours including 30 hours of core MBA courses delivered in a lock step cohort format. Once the core courses are completed students continue on to take 18 hours of electives in which specializations and concentrations may be established.

    The MS in Finance program is comprised of 36 semester hours and is a more flexible, self-paced program. You may choose between the Generalist Track or the Executive Track. The MS in Finance program generalist track is highly concentrated in Finance with 30 hours of Finance courses, 3 of Accounting & 3 of Decision Information Systems. The executive track allows you to combine Concentrations and/or Certificate programs with finance courses to fulfill the requirements for graduation.

  • Is the MS in Finance program a full time program?

    Yes, the MS in Finance program can be completed on a full-time or part-time basis. It is up to the student to decide how many credit hours they choose to enroll in each semester. Classes are typically held Monday through Thursday from 6 to 9 p.m.

  • Are there summer classes?

    Yes. There are two short non overlapping 5-week summer semesters. During the summer semesters, classes are given from 6 to 10 p.m., twice a week.

  • Can I register to begin my MS in Finance program for a spring or summer semester?

    Yes, you may apply for Spring or Fall admissions; however, there is no summer admission.

  • What courses can I take for the MSF?

    Only Finance courses, coded FINA before the course number. Example: FINA 7350.

  • I am an MSF student and I also am studying for a certificate. Do all my certificate courses count for my graduation from the MSF program?

    No. Any Course that is not a Finance course will not count for your graduation from the MSF program.

  • How can I include a non-Finance course in my MSF program?

    Any course that is not coded FINA before the number must be approved by the MSF Program Director, even if the course is part of a certificate program. The only non-finance course that is pre-approved is ACCT 7340 Financial Statement Analysis (does not require a petition).

    The Application Process
  • How do I apply for the program?

    Domestic students please follow the Checklist. International students should follow the Checklist as well as the International Admissions Requirements

  • Are there two different packages I should send?

    No, unless you are an International student. Otherwise, you should put all requirements together in ONE package and send it to the address for Graduate and Professional Programs Office listed on the checklist page. International students need to send the additional international forms in a separate package to the International Admissions address listed on the checklist page as well.

  • I am already a graduate student on UH main campus and I am interested on switching to the MS in Finance Program. What is the Process that I should follow?

    All prospective students or current graduate students must submit a complete application with all required materials to be considered for the MS Finance program. Unfortunately, you cannot transfer into the program.

  • Which of the admissions criteria are most important?

    Applications are considered in their entirety. While strengths vary from one applicant to another, we seek those students who combine strong academic aptitude & quantitative analytical aptitude.

  • Why is it beneficial to apply early?

    All applications are carefully considered. Thus, early application is very helpful in those situations in which some information is missing or additional data is needed. This allows the applicant the time to address any financial aid or housing issues that may arise, or, if the applicant is an international student, it allows extra time to arrange for visa and funding.

  • Can I find out by telephone whether I have been accepted or denied admission to the program?

    No. Decisions are conveyed by mail or email; there are no exceptions.

  • Are letters of recommendation required?

    No, letters of recommendation are not required or accepted for this program.

    Transfers & Waivers
  • Being a graduate student in another College on UH campus, can I take Finance graduate classes before I apply to the MSF program that will count if I am admitted?

    Yes. You may take up to 3 classes (9 credit hours) of Finance that you may transfer to the MSF once admitted upon approval from the MS in Finance Program Director.

  • How many Courses can I waive?

    You can waive BZAN 6310, FINA 6387, and FINA 6A35 (three of the four core courses) if you have done prior work that provides background at the same level as these courses.

  • Can I apply for a waiver if I have a bachelor’s degree in business?

    Yes. You may apply for a waiver of any of the 3 core courses listed above, if you have taken sufficient number of statistics, economics, and finance courses.

  • Can I substitute Finance Courses with graduate courses of my interest from other majors and/ or institutions, for example: classes from Economics, Law and Accounting?

    No, for the MS in Finance, all of your elective courses must be Finance courses with the exception of GENB 7397, Business Modeling for Competitive Advantage.

  • Is the GMAT required?

    Yes. Without the Graduate Management Admissions Test (GMAT) scores, your application is not complete and will not be reviewed.
    The scores cannot be older than 5 years. If they are older than 5 years, the applicant must retake the GMAT

  • Do you accept GRE scores instead of GMAT scores?

    The GMAT exam is preferred, but we will also consider GRE scores.

  • What is the minimum acceptable GMAT score?

    There is no minimum GMAT score required, but the average of all accepted candidates over the past 3 year period was 621. GMAT scores significantly below average may decrease the probability of acceptance.

  • If I take the GMAT more than once, are my scores averaged?

    No. The admissions decision will be based on your highest score. Score cannot be older than five years.

  • How must GMAT scores be submitted?

    You may submit the unofficial score report generated by the computer at the end of the test session to the MSF program office. For verification purposes, however, you must also request that the GMAT administration send your official score report directly to the University of Houston, using our school code number XT1-26-15. Without official scores, the application will not be processed.

  • What if my official GMAT scores, including the AWA, arrive after the deadline?

    We must have your official GMAT score by the application deadline.

  • How do I apply to take the GMAT?

    The GMAT is administered by the Graduate Management Admission Council. Information is available on their website at

  • I've taken the GMAT more than once. Can I submit components from various testing dates?

    No. Component GMAT scores, including verbal, quantitative, and analytical writing assessment tests, must be reported from the same date. While the report contains all of your scores, Bauer College will focus on the best.

  • Is the Test of English as a Foreign Language (TOEFL) or International English Language Testing System (IELTS) required?

    Yes, if you earned your undergraduate degree outside the U.S., Australia, New Zealand, English-speaking Canada, or the United Kingdom, regardless of whether the program you attended was conducted in English. You may take either the TOEFL or the International English Language Testing System (IELTS) test. TOEFL/IELTS scores may not be more than 2 years old. These tests are waived for applicants who earned a previous college degree in the U.S.

  • How do I apply to take the TOEFL or IELTS?

    The TOEFL is administered by the Educational Testing Service (ETS). Information is available on the internet at Information on the IELTS is available on the internet at

  • What must I score on the TOEFL or IELTS to be considered?

    The minimum TOEFL requirement is 100 on the internet-based test or 620 on the paper-based test, or a minimum IELTS score of 6.5.

  • Must I also take the Test of Written English (TWE)?

    No, it is not required for admission.

  • Although my education was completed overseas, I am now a US citizen. Will UH waive the TOEFL/IELTS?

    No, unless you meet the conditions outlined above. Whether you are a US citizen (or permanent resident) is not the issue. You must take the TOEFL or IELTS unless you have completed a previous academic degree in one of the countries mentioned above.

  • If I take the TOEFL or more than once, are my scores averaged?

    No. We consider only your highest score. You may take the test as many times as you like.

  • How long does it take for UH to receive my scores?

    Usually, official scores will be reported to UH four (4) weeks after you take the test.

    Experience & Degrees
  • How much professional experience, on average, do Bauer College applicants bring to the program?

    On average, our students have 2 years of professional experience.

  • How important is my work experience in the admission decision?

    Professional experience is not necessary for admission. It is, however, one of the factors considered in evaluating the applicant and it may enhance the applicant’s chances of admission.

  • Must I have an undergraduate degree to enter the graduate program?

    Yes. You must have a four-year undergraduate degree from an accredited college or university if you received your education in the United States. If you are an international applicant, your undergraduate degree must be the equivalent of a U.S. four-year bachelor's degree. If you have completed a three-year Bachelor of Commerce (B.Com) degree from India or Pakistan, we also require that you have completed the Master of Commerce (M.Com) degree or similar post-graduate degree. For specifics on International requirements you may contact The International Admissions Office.

  • What undergraduate major is required?

    No particular undergraduate major is required in order to pursue the MSF.

  • Does the program have any academic pre-requisites?

    No pre-requisites are required for the MS Finance program.