Master of Business Administration

Admission Procedures

MBA Prerequisite Competencies

Viterbo University is proud of its students' diverse backgrounds and welcomes students from all walks of life into its MBA program. To support non-business majors in fulfilling the prerequisite competencies for the MBA program, we have developed a 3-credit Foundations of Business course specifically designed to help you achieve competency in the core business areas (accounting, finance, business law, marketing, information systems, and economics) efficiently.  

A student who holds an undergraduate degree from a regionally accredited business school generally fulfills the prerequisites by virtue of previous course work. Students who have not developed these skills in their undergraduate coursework may still enter the MBA program; however, they are considered to be "conditionally admitted" into the program until completion of the Foundations of Business course in the first semester.  Other options for demonstrating competency in the prerequisite areas include passing CLEP examinations or completing work experience portfolios.  Please contact Tiffany Smith, Assistant Director, Graduate Enrollment,  College of Business & Leadership, | 608-796-3379 with any questions you may have regarding your demonstration of foundation requirements.

Admission Requirements

To be considered for acceptance into Viterbo University’s M.B.A. program, an applicant must satisfy the following minimum criteria. These criteria are considered along with all items in the application submission packet in making the determination on acceptance.  Applicants may be granted full acceptance or conditional acceptance. 

  • Bachelor’s degree from a regionally-accredited college or university (It is understood that students applying to the 4+1 MBA program will be seeking the bachelor degree);
  • Minimum undergraduate cumulative grade point average of 3.0 on a 4.0 scale, or a 3.0 for the last two years of the undergraduate degree. Exceptions may be made to this requirement if the applicant (1) submits a work experience portfolio describing significant organizational experience OR (2) has taken the GMAT examination OR (3) has successfully completed other graduate level coursework.

An application submission packet is only considered complete upon receipt of the following items:  

  • An official Viterbo University application for the Dahl School of Business M.B.A. program. The application form is available at
  • An official transcript evidencing the baccalaureate degree sent directly from a regionally accredited, degree-granting institution. Transcripts must be requested and sent directly from the institution to Viterbo University Admission Office, 900 Viterbo Drive, La Crosse, WI 54601. We also accept electronic transcripts from Parchment, National Clearinghouse, and Credentials Solutions. Please select "Office of Admission - Traditional Programs" as your destination, if given more than one option when ordering electronic transcripts. Faxed, emailed or hand-delivered transcripts are not acceptable.
  • One recommendation from an individual attesting to the applicant’s ability and potential for successfully
    completing graduate level coursework. The recommendation shall be from a direct supervisor, if
    possible. Have your reference complete the online Graduate Degree Recommendation Form located at:
  • A two to three page personal essay setting forth:1) the reasons why you desire to attain an M.B.A. degree; 2) what you can add to Viterbo University’s M.B.A. program; and 3) what you hope to get out of Viterbo University’s M.B.A. program.  
  • Educational Loan Agreement and Disclosure Statement:

Admission to Other Graduate Programs: Admission to a specific degree or certificate program does not imply admission to any other degree or certificate program. A separate application must be submitted to apply for admission to another program. 

Transfer Credits: Students may transfer up to nine credits of prior graduate coursework into the MBA program. Credit will only be granted for coursework completed within the last 10 years at a regionally accredited university. Requests to transfer credits should be made in writing to the program director or assistant director of enrollment by the end of the student's first semester of coursework. Requests must be accompanied by an official transcript from the institution at which prior credits were earned. To be considered for credit, students must: 1) demonstrate the relevance of the prior coursework to existing MBA program learning outcomes and 2) have earned a B or better in the prior coursework.

Viterbo University Graduate Certificate Credits Applied to the MBA: A graduate course taken as part of a certificate program at Viterbo University may later be applied to satisfy MBA program requirements, given:

  • The student has applied and been accepted into the MBA program.
  • A grade of B or better has been received on the certificate course.
  • The course is considered relevant to the MBA at the time of admission.
  • The course was taken within the timeframe specified for transferrable credits in Viterbo’s graduate program catalog.

A student who completes a certificate and then enters the MBA program cannot declare the certificate program as an emphasis. If they choose to declare a different emphasis during the MBA program, that will be the emphasis designation on the official transcript.

The 4 + 1 M.B.A Program

Viterbo University’s 4+1 M.B.A. option offers achievement-oriented, highly motivated students the opportunity to obtain their bachelor degree and their M.B.A. in five years.   

Application to the 4 + 1 .M.BA. program occurs during the junior or senior undergraduate year with an online application. Students are admitted on a provisional basis and will be advised during the remainder of the junior and senior years by their undergraduate advisor and an M.B.A. advisor. Provisional admittance will become full graduate admission if the student maintains a 3.0 grade point average, receives no grade lower than a “BC” on the graduate coursework taken, and earns the undergraduate degree.   

Students in the 4 + 1 M.B.A. program must meet all undergraduate degree requirements. This coursework is completed in the first four years of the program. Up to nine graduate credits of the graduate program are taken during the student’s fourth year (senior year) of undergraduate work (see undergraduate catalog criteria). A student concurrently enrolled in both undergraduate and graduate coursework in a semester may take no more than 16 credits in that semester. The remaining credits of the graduate program are taken during year five of the program, and the M.B.A. is generally earned after the fifth year. The work toward the M.B.A. degree may be pursued part-time over a longer period of time, not to exceed five years of graduate coursework. Non-continuous enrollment is subject to curriculum changes of the catalog currently in place. 

To be considered for acceptance into Viterbo University’s 4+1  M.B.A. program, an applicant must satisfy the same requirements as outlined above in the “Admission Requirements” section.

International Applicants

International applications are processed in conjunction with Kenneth Felts, Director of International Admission. Contact Kenneth at, or phone 1-888-VITERBO (1-888-848-3726) and 608-796-3171. International applicants who are non-native English speakers will need to provide evidence of proficiency in the English language, showing a Test of English as a Foreign Language (TOEFL) minimum score of 550 on the paper-based test or 79 on the Internet-based exam. Alternatively, you may submit an International English Language Testing Service (IELTS) score of at least 6.5 or a Pearson Test of English (PTE) score of at least 53. English language (ESL) courses are also offered at Viterbo University and may be required as a condition to acceptance into the MBA program.

Viterbo University reserves the right to deny admission to any applicant it deems unfit to participate in its MBA program.

For more information, contact Tiffany Smith, Assistant Director, Graduate Enrollment,  College of Business & Leadership, | 608-796-3379.