MBA Program Handbook

Updated: 2018 (For previous versions of the handbook, please contact Kambiz Raffiee.)

MBA Program Handbook

The Master of Business Administration (MBA) Program at the University of Nevada, Reno accommodates the needs of students by offering all evening courses. Students can complete the MBA at their own pace without interrupting their professional career. This MBA program is also among a select group of worldwide graduate business programs accredited by the Association to Advance Collegiate Schools of Business (AACSB), the highest level of accreditation attainable in business education.

The University's MBA program has appeared on several lists of top business school in recent years. Kambiz Raffiee, Ph.D., Associate Dean for the University's College of Business and Director of its MBA Program, says this is because of the quality of its faculty and the student-focused nature of the program.

"Our faculty is comprised of internationally respected scholars with real-world experience and a passion for teaching and inspiring students," says Raffiee. "Our class sizes are relatively small, which prevents students from getting lost in the crowd. Our extensive ties to local, regional and national business communities through the Career and Corporate Outreach Center help students and alumni when it comes time to navigate their careers."

The program is designed for individuals who have completed a baccalaureate degree in any field and who have at least two years of professional experience in a business, government, or non-profit organization. The MBA program generally can be completed by most students in three years or less of evening study.

  1. This program is distinguished by four characteristics:
  2. It allows students a high degree of flexibility to choose electives that is applicable to their overall professional interest,
  3. All appropriate courses have an in depth content related to business issues,
  4. The program responds to those currently in managerial and professional positions and is flexible to their needs, and
  5. It is accredited by The Association to Advance Collegiate Schools of Business (AACSB), the highest level of accreditation attainable in business education.

The program has been designed to promote understanding of the basic tools and techniques needed to manage effectively and efficiently in the changing global marketplace. An MBA from the University of Nevada, Reno will enable a manager or executive to perform a wide range of managerial functions, including: 

  1. Managing human and material resources in a culturally diverse and rapidly changing technological world,
  2. Making decisions based on complex business information,
  3. Using the most up to date financial and business data bases for analysis and application,
  4. Understanding the implications of an increasingly global economy and the changing legal, ethical, cultural and political environments of business, and
  5. Developing business policies and strategies that are responsive to rapid change.

Program Objectives/Student Learning Outcomes

The context of assessment for the MBA program at the University of Nevada, Reno is based on the guidelines of assurance of learning (AOL) by the Association to AACSB. Specifically, both course- embedded measures and indirect measures are used to assess student achievement of the program. The student learning outcomes of the program are:

  1. Students will demonstrate mastery of fundamental business knowledge and practices.
  2. Students will possess analytical and critical thinking skills
  3. Students will be Effective Communicators within a Business Environment.
  4. Students will be able to use information technology to support business analysis and operations.
  5. Students will recognize, evaluate and resolve ethical issues, both personally and organizationally.

Contact Information

Kambiz Raffiee, Associate Dean and Director of MBA Programs 
(775) 682-9142

Christie Chaump, Graduate Programs Coordinator
(775) 682-9140

Mailing address:
MBA Program
The College of Business, Mail Stop 0024
University of Nevada, Reno
1664 North Virginia Street Reno, NV 89557-0024

This handbook lists graduate program academic policies and procedures. It includes information on graduate school policies, degree requirements, timeline for degree completion, committee selection guidelines and comprehensive exam/thesis requirements. Every effort has been made to make this handbook accurate as of the date of publication; however, this handbook does not constitute a contractual commitment. Graduate programs may not offer all of the courses as described, and policies are subject to yearly review and changes with program director and Graduate Council approval.

Degree Requirements

Program Total Hours (51 Units)

  • 21 units in the core
  • 18 units in the breadth section
  • 9 units in the emphasis (electives) units
  • 3 units in the Integration course

MBA Curriculum

The following core courses comprise the MBA common body of knowledge and are required unless waived. Students must complete the core requirements before enrolling in breadth courses. 51 credit hours are required for the completion of the MBA Program if nothing is waived out of core courses and 30 credit hours must be taken at the University to graduate from the MBA Program.

See the University General Course Catalog for more information about Course Descriptions.

The Common Body of Knowledge (Core)

  • BADM 700: Statistics for Decision Making
  • BADM 701: Production/Operation Management (BADM 700 Pre-Requisite)
  • BADM 710: Financial Reporting and Analysis
  • BADM 720: Management and Organizational Science
  • BADM 730: Economics of the Firm (BADM 700 Pre-Requisite)
  • BADM 741: Financial Management (BADM 700 Pre-Requisite)
  • BADM 760: Marketing Management

Breadth Courses

Enrollment in Breadth Courses requires completion of the Core Courses.

  • BADM 750: Information and Communications Technology in Organizations (required)
  • BADM 772: Changing Environments of Business (required)

Plus any four of the following courses:

  • BADM 711: Seminar in Managerial Accounting
  • BADM 726: Personal Branding
  • BADM 727: Seminar in Business Ethics and Social Responsibility
  • BADM 728: Managing Organizations in a Global Economy
  • BADM 729: Seminar in Management Issues
  • BADM 740: Seminar in Monetary and Financial Economics
  • BADM 742: Research Methods in Finance
  • BADM 743: Investment Management
  • BADM 744: Securities Analysis and Portfolio Management
  • BADM 745: Commercial Bank Management
  • BADM 746: Corporate Treasury Management
  • BADM 748: Real Estate Finance
  • BADM 749: Seminar in Finance
  • BADM 769: Seminar in Marketing Issues
  • BADM 779: Seminar in Logistics and Supply Chain Management Issues
  • BADM 780: Business and Public Policy Areas of Emphasis
  • BADM 791: Special Topics
  • BADM 794: Value Creation and Measurement


The integration course is designed to be taken during the last semester prior to graduation. Students must have completed the core and breadth courses before enrolling in the integration course.

  • BADM 781: Strategic Management for Executives

Areas of Emphasis

Our MBA program offers areas of emphasis in accounting, entrepreneurship, finance, information technology, and renewable energy. Students need a total of 9 credits for either an emphasis or general electives in the MBA Program at the University of Nevada, Reno. Students who graduated from the College of Business at UNR cannot enroll in 600 level courses if they took them at the 400 level at UNR. Note that MBA students can also pursue other areas of emphasis by taking graduate courses of their choice outside of the College of Business. For additional information on developing an emphasis in an area other than Business, please contact the MBA Office at 775-682-9140.

Accounting Emphasis

There are two areas of accounting emphasis in the MBA Program: Financial and Tax.

Financial Emphasis

The study of financial accounting concerns the rules, practices, and conventions, referred to as Generally Accepted Accounting Practices (GAAP). GAAP is the standard used by companies who report their financial results to external parties including financial institutions, regulators, and shareholders. A solid understanding of GAAP is helpful for a career in the areas of finance, administration, and accounting.

The 3-course financial emphasis will give you a solid understanding of current GAAP.

Financial Faculty Advisor: Dr. Sonja Pippin, Email:

  • ACC 601 - Financial Reporting I (Prerequisite: BADM 710) 
  • ACC 602 - Financial Reporting II (Prerequisite: ACC 601)
  • ACC 603 - Financial Reporting III

Tax Emphasis

The 3-course tax emphasis offers the MBA student both a thorough grounding in the Federal income tax regulations governing individuals and business entities and an analytical framework through which to analyze decisions with tax implications.

Tax Faculty Advisor: Dr. Sonja Pippin, Email:

  • ACC 610 - Federal Taxation (Prerequisite: BADM 710)
  • ACC 611 - Taxation of Flow-Through Entities (Prerequisite: ACC 610)
  • ACC 789 - Taxation of Business Entities II (Prerequisite: ACC 610)

Entrepreneurship Emphasis

Entrepreneurship involves turning an idea into profit. This can occur with a startup or within an existing business. To see profit in an idea requires a breadth of business understanding, and to obtain profit from an idea requires the ability to execute. An emphasis in entrepreneurship provides grounding in evaluating business ideas and much detailed exposure to the practical steps necessary to form and execute a business plan.

Entrepreneurship Faculty Advisors: Professor Mark Pingle (Email: and Chris Howard (Email:

  • BADM 794 - Value Creation and Measurement
  • BADM 791 - Special Topics (Social Entrepreneurship & Non-Profit Management)
  • ENT 601 - New Venture Creation
  • ENT 602 - Entrepreneurial Finance
  • ENT 603 - Applied Entrepreneurship
  • ENT 693 - Special Topics in Entrepreneurship

Finance Emphasis

The general areas of study in finance are: corporate finance, investments, and financial institutions. The areas, respectively, involve decisions within the firm, analysis of a wide range of securities for inclusion in an individual or institutional portfolio, and an understanding of the types of markets securities trade in and their regulation. The finance emphasis offers courses in each of these areas and specialization in Corporate Finance (BADM 745, BADM 746, BADM 749, and FIN 604) and Investments (BADM 743, BADM 744, and FIN 610).

Finance Faculty Advisor: Dr. Sheri Faircloth, Email:

  • FIN 604 - Financial Management Theory and Practice (Pre-requisite: BADM 741)
  • FIN 610 - Financial Derivatives (Pre-requisite: BADM 741) 7
  • FIN 620 - International Finance (Pre-requisite: BADM 741)
  • BADM 742 – Research Methods of Finance (Pre-requisite: BADM 741)
  • BADM 743 - Investment Management (Pre-requisite: BADM 741)
  • BADM 744 - Securities Analysis and Portfolio Management (Pre-requisite: BADM 741)
  • BADM 745 – Commercial bank Management (Pre-requisite: BADM 741)
  • BADM 746 – Corporate Treasury Management (Pre-requisite:

Information Technology Emphasis

The Information Technology emphasis helps students learn how innovative information systems help organizations achieve sustainable strategic advantages. In addition, this emphasis explains how organizations can both protect and leverage their existing technology, properly implement new projects, and manage the organizational change that accompanies new systems. Independent study encourages the application of coursework to real world organizational issues.

MBA students who select an emphasis in Information Management can tailor their program to focus on specific interest and work needs. Some suggested three course clusters are:

  • Project Management (IS 645, IS 746, IS 788)
  • Business Intelligence (IS 682, IS 701, IS 752)
  • Management of IT (IS 752, IS 788, 789)

Other clusters are possible, drawing from 600 level and 700 level IS courses, subject to prerequisites and approval by the MBA coordinator and the IS program.

Information Technology Faculty Advisor: Dr. Dana Edberg, Associate Professor and IS Chair, Email:

  • IS 645 – Project Management: Principles and Practice (Pre-requisite: BADM 750)
  • IS 670 – Computer Security, Controls, and Information Assurance (Pre-requisite: IS 350)
  • IS 746 – Project Management: Advanced Topics (Pre-requisite: IS 645)
  • IS 752 – Issues in the Current Technical Environmental (Pre-requisite: BADM 750)
  • IS 788 – Issues in Change Management (Pre-requisite: IS 301 or BADM 750) ➢ BADM 793 – Independent Study in information systems (Pre-requisite: Approval of Faculty Advisor and the MBA Office)

Renewable Energy Emphasis

Renewable energy development has received increased attention in the last decade as government policymakers and entrepreneurs seek opportunities to profitably reduce reliance on fossil fuel usage both for energy security and environmental reasons. These online courses address select topics that business managers and entrepreneurs in the renewable energy field must consider when assessing new markets and making the business case for developing new energy capacity.

MBA students may take three of the renewable energy courses to complete a MBA emphasis in renewable energy.

Renewable Energy Faculty Advisor: Dr. Jill Wallace, Email:

Courses in the Graduate Renewable Energy Certificate program include the following:

  • ENGR 600 - Alternative Energy Fundamentals (recommended pre/co-requisite for other GREC courses) - Offered in Fall, Spring & Summer semesters
  • ENGR 610 - Renewable Energy Policy - Offered in Fall semesters
  • ENGR 620 - Renewable Energy in the Home and Local Community - Offered in Summer semesters 8
  • ENGR 630 - Wind Energy - Offered in Summer semesters
  • ENGR 640 - Principles of Sustainability for Business Application - Offered in Spring semesters
  • ENGR 650 - Solar and Renewable Energy Utilization - Offered in Fall semesters
  • ENGR 660 - Fundamentals of Biofuels - Offered in Spring semesters
  • ENGR 670 - Geology of Geothermal Energy Resources - Offered in Spring semesters
  • ENGR/JOUR 680 - Communicating Innovation - Offered in Fall semesters
  • CEE 611/PSC 603E/NRES 612 - Environmental Law - Offered in Summer semesters

Internship and Independent Study

Also note that BADM 792 (Internship) and BADM 793 (independent study) are among the available courses to MBA students as either electives or as courses for an emphasis. For guidelines to do an independent study, see appendix 1. For BADM 793, you need to have a faculty advisor from the College of Business. Prior to registering for BADM 792 or BADM 793, you should contact the MBA Office to discuss the details of the work involved and to get the contact information of a faculty advisor. Once the scope of the work for BADM 793 is worked out, the MBA Office will provide you with the information on how to register in the course.

Comprehensive Exam

This is not applicable to the UNR on-campus MBA Program.

Graduate School Academic Requirements

All graduate students must maintain a cumulative graduate GPA of 3.0. If their GPA drops below 3.0, they are either placed on probation or dismissed. Undergraduate courses will not count towards graduate GPA.


Students whose cumulative graduate GPA falls between 2.31 and 2.99 are automatically placed on academic probation for one semester. If they fail to raise their cumulative GPA to 3.0 by the end of one semester, they are dismissed from their graduate program. Thesis, dissertation, S/U graded credits, and transfer credits have no impact on a student’s GPA.


Students whose cumulative graduate GPA is 2.30 or lower are dismissed. Dismissed students are no longer enrolled in their graduate program but may take graduate-level courses as a Grad Special.


Students wishing to complete their degree must obtain approval to take graduate-level courses, raise their graduate GPA to at least 3.0, and then re-apply to their graduate program. Any courses taken in an effort to raise their GPA will be included in the graduate special/ transfer credit limitation (9 credits for master’s degrees).

Please refer to Nevada System of Higher Education CODE on Student Program Dismissal Procedures (SPDP) and review conference policies: (NSHE CODE, Chapter 11, Sections 1-3). If program dismissal is based upon failure to maintain required grades or a required GPA as described above, SPDP does not apply and the student may be summarily dismissed from the graduate program.

Admission Requirements and Deadlines

Admission to the MBA Program requires fulfillment of all of the following:

  • A bachelor's degree from an accredited institution in the United States, or proof of equivalent training at a foreign university. The MBA Program is open to graduates from all disciplines.
  • A minimum GPA (grade point average) of 2.75 on a 4.0 scale.
  • MBA applicants may take either the GMAT or GRE examination. A recommended minimum score of 500 is required for the GMAT examination. The GRE examination has three sections (verbal reasoning, quantitative reasoning and analytical writing), the minimum score for the verbal and quantitative reasoning sections is 150, and 3.5 for the analytical writing section. GMAT or GRE scores more than five years old are not accepted. Exceptions are only granted if the applicant has completed one of the following:
    • An accredited graduate degree (Master's, Ph.D.).
    • A professional degree (JD, MD, DVM, etc.).
    • An active CPA, CFP, CMA, or PE license.
    • A graduate certificate or GMAC executive assessment test.
  • A minimum of two years of professional work experience.
  • International candidates must have strong English language communication skills, both written and spoken. International must have a minimum Test of English as a Foreign Language (TOEFL) score of 550 or International English Language Testing System (IELTS) of at least 79. The minimum score for Duolingo is 105.

The TOEFL, IELTS or Duolingo is waived for students who have completed degree programs conducted in English in the U.S., Canada, the U.K., Australia or New Zealand. International students who are admitted to the program may be required to complete additional courses as recommended by the Intensive English Department upon enrollment.

Applications are accepted for the fall and spring semesters. Application materials must be filed at the Graduate School.

Transfer Credits

These are credits transferred from another institution. Credits completed at UNR in another program or as a graduate special do not need to be transferred. Transfer credit can be requested on the Graduate Credit Transfer Evaluation Request form available on Graduate School website, and must be signed by the student, major advisor, and graduate director. Transfer credits applied to a master’s program must comply with the time limitation on master’s work (6 years). Thus, if a student took a course five years prior to admission, they would have to complete the degree within one year for the course to apply to the degree.

Timeline for Degree Completion

The exact timeline to finish the MBA program depends on the number of courses waived and the number of courses taken in each semester. Please note that the schedules of study provided below are recommended only and may vary according to work schedule of students.

Please note the Graduate School requires that all course work must be completed within six years preceding the awarding of the degree (i.e. course work from more than six years ago cannot be applied towards the MBA degree).

Scenario A

For students who do not have any MBA Core courses waived, the course requirements of the program can be completed in 3 years.

Admitted Fall Semester

First Year

  • Fall: BADM 700 and BADM 710
  • Spring: BADM 701 and BADM 741
  • Summer: BADM 730

Second Year

  • Fall: BADM 720 and BADM 760
  • Spring: BADM 750, BADM 772 and an elective
  • Summer: Breadth Course

Admitted Spring Semester

First Year

  • Spring: BADM 700 and BADM 720
  • Summer: None
  • Fall: BADM 710 and BADM 760

Second Year

  • Spring: BADM 701 and BADM 730
  • Summer: Breadth Course
  • Fall: BADM 741, BADM 72 and a Breadth Course

Third Year

  • Spring: BADM 750, Breadth Course and an Elective
  • Summer: An Elective
  • Fall: Breadth Course, an Elective and BADM 781

Scenario B

Students with an undergraduate degree in business who are waived from the MBA course requirements will only have to take a total of 10 courses to complete the program. They should be able to finish the MBA in two years or less.

Admitted Fall Semester

First Year

  • Fall: BADM 750 and BADM 772
  • Spring: Two Breadth Courses
  • Summer: Breadth Course

Second Year

  • Fall: Breadth Course, Elective and BADM 781
  • Spring: Two Electives
  • Summer: None

Admitted Spring Semester

First Year

  • Spring: BADM 750 and BADM 772
  • Summer: Breadth Course
  • Fall: Two Breadth Courses

Second Year

  • Spring: Breadth Course, and Elective and BADM 781
  • Summer: None
  • Fall: Two Electives

Scenario C

Students with a partial waiver from the MBA course requirements will have a schedule of study similar to the one in Scenario A that can be completed in less than 3 years. The details of the schedule of study in Scenario C will be developed in consultation with the MBA advisors.

Scenario D (Thesis)

If students opt to do a thesis, they will (1) sign up for a 3-credit independent study, BADM 793, to develop a thesis proposal and to write a comprehensive review of the literature, and (2) enroll in a thesis course, BADM 797, for 6 credits. The work done in independent study and thesis will be supervised by College of Business faculty. Prior to starting the thesis, students must contact the Director of the MBA Program.

The recommended schedules of study in Scenarios A, B and C will be revised in consultation with MBA advisors if students choose to go for a thesis option.

Graduate School forms and resources related to thesis and dissertations:

Once all requirements have been met, students need to submit a Final Review Approval and Notice of Completion form in order to graduate.


The following timeline is based on expectations of the Graduate School and the MBA Program.

Declaration of Advisor/Major Advisor/Committee Chair form

For master’s students, the completed form must be submitted to Graduate School by the end of the student’s second semester. For doctoral and MFA students, the completed form must be submitted to Graduate School by the end of the student’s third semester.

Program of Study

The Program of Study form is the foundation of your graduate program in that it lists all course work or credits that are required to fulfill the requirements for the degree. This includes course work already completed, in-progress, to be completed, and transfer credits. The Program of Study form can be found at: Program of Study form. For master’s students, the completed form must be submitted to Graduate School by the end of the student’s third semester. For doctoral students, the completed form must be submitted to Graduate School by the end of the student’s fourth semester.

Graduation Application

Every student must purchase a graduation application by the designated Graduation Application deadline:

  • May Graduation Deadline: March 1
  • August Graduation Deadline: June 1
  • December Graduation Deadline: October 1

Notice of Completion

Submit Notice of Completion form after all requirements have been met: Master’s form

Graduate School Exit Survey

Upon graduation, take the Graduate School’s Exit Survey.

Committee Selection Guideline

This is not applicable to the UNR on-campus MBA Program.

Comprehensive Exam

This is not applicable to the UNR on-campus MBA Program.

Thesis (Optional)

If students opt to do a thesis, they will (1) sign up for a 3-credit independent study, BADM 793, to develop a thesis proposal and to write a comprehensive review of the literature, and (2) enroll in a thesis course, BADM 797, for 6 credits. The work done in independent study and thesis will be supervised by College of Business faculty. Prior to starting the thesis, students must contact the Director of the MBA Program.

Graduate Assistantships

All graduate students holding an assistantship (teaching GTA or GRA) are considered Nevada residents for tuition purposes. Non-resident tuition is only waived for the duration of the assistantship. To be eligible for an assistantship, students must be admitted to a degree-granting program and be in good academic standing. The student must have an overall GPA of at least 3.0 and must be continuously enrolled in at least 6 graduate level credits (600-700) throughout the duration of the assistantship.

State-funded assistantships (GTA/GRA) may be held for a maximum of: three (3) years for master’s degree students and five (5) years for doctoral degree students.

Please refer to the most updated information on graduate assistantships from the Graduate School.

Health Insurance

All domestic degree seeking graduate students, who are enrolled in six or more credits (regardless of the course level) in a semester, will be automatically enrolled and billed for the University sponsored health insurance for each term they are eligible (fall & spring/summer). If a student has other comparable coverage and would like to waive out of the student health insurance, it is the student’s responsibility to complete the University online waiver form prior to the deadline. If approved, a health insurance waiver is good for the current academic year only. A new waiver must be submitted each academic year. All international graduate students are required to carry student health insurance, and the cost will be automatically added to your student account. Any international graduate students with insurance questions must contact the Office of International Students and Scholars (OISS) Website directly.

Information on Graduate health insurance. 

Leave of Absence

Continuous Enrollment

To maintain “good standing” all graduate students are required to enroll in a minimum of three (3) graduate credits each fall and spring semester until they graduate. International students may be required to enroll in nine graduate credits each fall and spring semester depending on the requirements of their visa. All students holding assistantships (whether teaching or research assistantships) are required to enroll in a minimum of six (6) graduate credits each semester they hold the assistantship.

Leave of Absence

Students in good standing may request a leave of absence by completing a Leave of Absence form during which time they are not required to maintain continuous registration. Usually, a leave of absence is approved for one or two semesters. The leave of absence request may be extended by the student filing an additional leave of absence form. Students applying for a leave of absence should not have any “incomplete” grades which could be changed to “F” and have a detrimental impact on their cumulative GPA. Requests for leave of absences must be received by the Graduate School no later than the last day of enrollment for the semester the leave is to begin.


When a student has been absent for one semester or more without an approved leave of absence, he or she may request reinstatement via the Reinstatement form. This form allows the program the option to recommend the student be re-admitted to their graduate program based on their previous admission OR require the student to re-apply for admission which would require students to submit a new application for admission and pay the application fee. The Notice of Reinstatement to Gradate Standing must be received by the Graduate School no later than the last day of enrollment for the semester the reinstatement is to begin.

Graduate Student Association

The Graduate Student Association represents all graduate students and promotes the welfare and interests of the graduate students at the University of Nevada, Reno. The GSA works closely with appropriate university administrative offices, including the Graduate School and Student Services and reports to the President of the University. The GSA government functions through the Council of Representatives, Executive Council and established committees.

Graduate School Forms

Please refer to Forms Website for all forms available at The Graduate School.