Joint Executive MS-SEM/MBA Program

If you are a professional looking to add a broader business perspective to the SEM Master’s program then The University of Texas at Dallas wants to introduce you to its Joint Executive MS-SEM/ MBA Program. This 63-65 credit hour program (excluding pre-requisites) will provide you with the opportunity to learn from world-class faculty.This opportunity places you at the forefront in the fields of systems engineering management and business leadership.

The Naveen Jindal School of Management and the Erik Jonsson School of Engineering and Computer Science offer a Joint Executive MS-SEM and MBA program because today’s experienced graduate students — seasoned by three or more years as workforce professionals — often seek a more comprehensive education in technical skills as well as broad-based business-leadership capabilities for the global economy. The joint-degree option provides both deep knowledge in SEM, as well as a broad knowledge of all areas of management with an enhanced worldwide perspective of business leadership for increasing productivity, efficiency and profitability.

The joint-degree program allows students to earn a combination of an MS-SEM degree and a MBA degree. Separately, each degree would require 36 (MS) + 53 (MBA) credit hours, or 89 credit hours total. But in the joint program students can earn both degrees with a smaller total of 63 to 65 semester credit hours.

Admission Requirements

The University’s general admission requirements are discussed here.

Students pursuing the Joint Executive MS-SEM and MBA program must meet the admission requirements for both programs and submit all required documents for admission to both programs. These admission requirements are discussed here.

Joint-Degree Requirements

Students must join the Executive MS-SEM degree program first, must complete their 36-hour master’s program. They have up to 6 years to accumulate remaining required core hours for the MBA Degree. (Details with respect to program-specific requirements can be obtained from the advisers for the two programs).

Executive MS-SEM FAQ

What is the study of MS in Systems Engineering and Management (SEM) about?

The MS-SEM program provides a broad-based, formalized education in engineering and management of increasingly complex “macro” systems that have both a large number of interdependent parts and a significant organizational or societal impact. These areas are at the intersection of the traditionally separate disciplines of systems engineering and systems management. The current business environment requires that engineers in industry and government be trained to be good managers and leaders, and to be good stewards of corporate or government resources. Conversely, managers in industry need a better appreciation and understanding of technology and how to manage large and complex engineering projects. They are all also expected to be cognizant of the broader impact of their management and engineering activities on their companies and on society at large. The MS-SEM program provides this training.

What are the admissions requirements, and how do I apply for the MS-SEM program?
Find the admissions requirements and the application process for the MS-SEM program here.

What undergraduate degree do I need to have to apply to the MS-SEM program?
If you have an undergraduate degree in engineering, physics, chemistry, math, economics or finance, you probably have an adequate background in math to enter the program. If your undergraduate degree is in another field, you may need to strengthen your math skills.

Where can I find more details on the tracks and courses?

Please see:

How long does it usually take to complete the MS-SEM program?

The MS-SEM is a 36-credit-hour program, excluding prerequisites. It usually takes three semesters to complete the program at 12 hours per semester. (Most students who work take two courses per semester and finish in six semesters.) Rarely, a student carrying heavy loads can complete the program in one calendar year if desired courses are available in the summer. Some international students take nine hours in the fall and spring, go home for the summer, and return for nine hours in the fall and nine hours in the spring. Other students enroll on a part-time basis and take longer to complete the program.

Do I need to have work experience to apply to the MS-SEM program?

In the Executive MS-SEM program, a minimum of three to five years of relevant work experience is preferred.

I am from a foreign country. Can I be accepted into the MS-SEM program?

Yes, we have many international students from many countries, and our faculty is very international also. However, international students must have student visas, are required to carry a minimum course load of nine credit hours in the fall and in the spring semesters, and must follow international student guidelines, as outlined by UT Dallas International Student Services.

What quantitative skills are required?

Students are expected to have taken calculus, statistics and linear algebra. Many MS-SEM engineering courses are quantitatively oriented, and students with less aptitude and education in quantitative methods are at a disadvantage.

Is financial aid available?

Students can find more information on the Financial Aid page of the SEM Executive Master’s website.

Are there any areas of concentration in the MS-SEM program?

Students can concentrate in any of the 12 areas indicated on the SEM Concentrations page.

What is the purpose of having a concentration?

Concentrations are designed to provide the optimal set of courses to prepare for specific careers in SEM, in specific industries or industry sectors.

Do I have to declare a concentration to receive my degree?

No. You must complete a minimum of 12 courses (36 credit hours) to earn an MS-SEM degree. All can be core courses, or you can take a minimum of four courses (12 credit hours) in a concentration while still satisfying your core-course requirements. Your concentration will not appear on your diploma.

What are the course requirements for each concentration?

Typical courses appropriate for each concentration are listed on the SEM Concentrations page. You can discuss alternatives with your adviser.

What kind of careers can I look forward to, and what employers hire MS-SEM graduates?

There are many career paths in SEM. See Career Path in SEM for examples.

Are there any online classes for the MS-SEM degree?

Not at this time, but we will be looking into that in the future.

I am a transfer student. Can I transfer some of my graduate courses from my previous university?

Transfer credits may be granted for equivalent graduate course work completed at other accredited universities with a grade of B or better within the past six years. Up to nine credit hours of course work from other universities may be transferred to the degree program, but they must fit into the MS-SEM program, and must be approved first by the Advising Office, then by the relevant faculty member for the course for which equivalence is being sought, and then by the director of the MS-SEM program. Applications are available in the Advising Office.

Can I receive transfer credit for undergraduate courses that cover the same material as your graduate courses?

No. The 36-hour requirement will not be reduced based on undergraduate course work. However, you may apply for a waiver of one or more of the core courses.

What is a waiver?

A waiver allows the student to skip a core course and enroll in a more advanced course in its place. Waivers of up to three courses may be granted in recognition of previous course work completed with a grade of B or better within the past six years. Applications are available in the Advising Office, and they must be approved by the director of the MS-SEM program. Waivers are usually discouraged because graduate courses are typically deeper and broader in coverage than their undergraduate counterparts. Further, expectations are higher, and competition is much stronger. Typically, the student is expected to have completed two undergraduate courses with similar content to receive a waiver of a graduate course.

Can courses be taken at other institutions after enrolling in the UT Dallas SEM graduate program?

Students officially admitted to the UT Dallas SEM graduate program must obtain prior approval before taking any courses at another university. The resultant transfer hours may be denied if prior approval is not obtained. See the Advising Office for details on applying for pre-approvals.

Can I get credit for an internship?

There is no formal internship within the Executive MS-SEM program.

Are joint degrees available?

Yes. Students can enroll in the Executive MS-SEM , complete the degree and then apply for an MBA degree. They can complete the Joint Executive MS-SEM/MBA program with 63 – 65 credit hours. Find more information at Joint Executive MS-SEM/MBA. Careful planning is required, and we recommend you first consult your MS-SEM and MBA advisers.

What are the faculty’s credentials?

Most faculty members have doctorates from top-tier graduate schools and have published research in leading academic and practitioner journals. Several faculty members also have had extensive work experience in industry and consulting.