Admission Requirements for MSA

Admission to the MSA program is offered once a year in the Fall semester. Admission requirements are as follows:

  • A four year Bachelor's degree from an accredited college or university in the U.S. or the equivalent of a U.S. bachelor’s degree from a recognized institution if the degree was earned outside of the U.S.
  • An applicant’s grade point average should be 3.0 or better (on a 4.0 scale) in the last 60 semester/90 quarter units of study. An absolute minimum of a 2.5 is required for graduate admission consideration at San Jose State University.
  • Applicants who have earned a degree from a higher education institution outside the United States must take an English-language proficiency exam. SJSU does not accept “English-medium of instruction” as a substitute for an English-language proficiency exam such as TOEFL, IELTS, or the Pearson’s Test of English. The MSA program requires a minimum score of 90 on the internet-based TOEFL, 7.5 on the IELTS, or 75 on the PTE. Please note that these scores are higher than the minimum scores required by San Jose State University for graduate admissions consideration. (The University requires an absolute minimum score of 80 on the internet-based TOEFL, 7.0 on the IELTS, or 68 on the PTE.) Requests to waive this requirement will only be considered under the following circumstances:
    • Received a Bachelor's or Master's degree from an accredited U.S. institution
    • Received a Bachelor's or Master's degree from an accredited institution for which English is the official and primary language of that country.
    • Completed 3 years of full time coursework in an accredited U.S. institution.
  • GMAT or GRE - Minimum GMAT scores of equal to or above the 50th percentile on both the quantitative and verbal sections of the exam are preferred. For the GRE, a comparable score is 151 in Verbal Reasoning and 152 in Quantitative Reasoning. No waiver is granted for the GMAT/GRE exam requirement under any circumstances.
  • Statement of Purpose Essay
  • Resume
  • Interview - A personal interview may be required. The MSA Program admits a limited number of new students each year. Not all applicants will receive an interview. Only finalists will be invited for a personal interview on campus. Interviews via WebEx or Skype may be permitted under extenuating circumstances provided that video capability is available.
  • Two letters of reference

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  • Prerequisite Courses – There are six prerequisite courses required for admission to the MSA program. The first prerequisite course, Introductory Financial Accounting, must be the equivalent of three semester hours and completed with a grade of B (3.0) or higher within five years prior to matriculation.
    • The acceptable prerequisite course offered at San Jose State University is Financial Accounting, BUS 20. We also accept courses offered by other regionally accredited higher education institutions. 
    • Please refer to to find the equivalent of BUS 20, Financial Accounting, at local community colleges. 
    • The remaining five upper-division prerequisite accounting courses must be completed with an overall average grade point average of 3.0 (B) or better, with no course grade less than a C (2.0).  The courses must have been completed at accredited four-year U.S. colleges or universities, or at San Jose State University in the Certificate in Accounting Fundamentals program. All five courses must have been completed within five years prior to matriculation into the MSA program. All prerequisite courses not completed at San Jose State University are subject to final approval by the MSA Admissions Committee. The five required prerequisite courses are as follows:
    • Intermediate Financial Accounting I
    • Intermediate Financial Accounting II
    • Accounting Information Systems
    • Management Accounting and Control Systems
    • Tax Factors of Business and Investment Decisions

If you have questions about your specific qualifications and/or the fulfillment of the prerequisite requirements, please fill out the questionnaire located at


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