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Pepperdine | Graziadio Business School

Start Your MBA Journey: Full-Time Program Admission

 Full-time MBA admission

Starting your journey within a Full-Time Master of Business Administration (MBA) program is a major move in elevating your career and personal growth. Pepperdine University's Graziadio Business School offers a distinguished Full-Time MBA, an ideal option for those who aim to become leaders and innovators in their field. This guide will help you navigate through the full-time MBA admissions process, providing insights to prospective students on how to compile a complete application, enhancing your chances of a favorable admission decision.

As you prepare to apply to graduate school, understanding each of the application elements is vital. The process not only requires meeting academic and professional prerequisites but also presenting a comprehensive view of your aspirations and abilities.

This guide is designed to help you assemble a strong application, increasing your likelihood of joining this esteemed program and taking a significant step in your professional journey.

Here's What's Required For Full-Time MBA Admission:

  • A complete online application
  • Application fee
  • A bachelor's degree
  • Official transcripts
  • A current resume
  • Personal statement
  • GMAT/GRE scores
  • Interview
  • Demonstration of English proficiency (for international applicants)

Cultivating Leaders and Entrepreneurs

Pepperdine University's Full-Time MBA program is a transformative experience, designed to cultivate critical communication and decision-making skills essential in various industries. With over 48,000 alumni globally, the program connects you to a network of professionals leading today’s top organizations.

The faculty at Pepperdine are not just educators; they are executive-level industry experts and world-class entrepreneurs passionate about nurturing the next generation of business leaders. The curriculum intertwines applied, experiential learning with theory and research, ensuring you're equipped with the skills needed for a successful business career, whether in leading organizations or in your entrepreneurial ventures.

 Full-time MBA admission

Admission Requirements into the Full-Time MBA Program: What You Need to Know

Securing a spot in the program requires meeting certain criteria. Ideally, candidates should have two years of full-time professional work experience. Here's what you need to prepare your online application:

Bachelor's Degree

All graduate programs require an undergraduate degree from an accredited institution. This requirement validates that applicants have a solid foundation of higher education, a necessity for advanced studies in an MBA program.

An undergraduate degree represents significant academic training, preparing applicants for the rigors of graduate programs. The skills and knowledge gained during an undergraduate academic experience are essential for mastering the complex concepts and methodologies in the MBA curriculum.

Your bachelor's degree is a clear indicator of your readiness for the challenges of a graduate degree program, laying a solid foundation for the advanced learning and professional development offered by Pepperdine's MBA program.

Official Transcripts

Your official transcripts offer the admissions team a verified and comprehensive overview of your academic record. Far from being mere formalities, these documents affirm your academic achievements and qualifications, serving as a testament to your educational journey.

For your application to meet the requirements, it's essential to provide only official transcripts. You must obtain authenticated copies from every higher education institution you have attended, which includes any transfer credits or additional courses completed after receiving your bachelor's degree.

Electronic submissions are generally faster and more secure, but if necessary, mailed transcripts should come directly from the educational institutions to Pepperdine University.

Make sure your academic transcripts are exhaustive, detailing every course and the corresponding grades as well as official test scores. Such thoroughness in your application materials, including academic transcripts and any standardized test scores, is vital for the admissions team to accurately assess your readiness for the rigorous MBA program.


Your resume is a pivotal part of your application, serving as a succinct summary of your professional background for the admissions team. Your resume should do more than just list your previous positions; it should actively demonstrate the progression and growth of your career. Ensuring accuracy and clarity in outlining job titles and full-time work experience, dates of employment, and company names is crucial, as it not only conveys your professional journey but also showcases your attention to detail and commitment to accuracy.

Beyond the basic chronology of your job history, your resume should highlight key achievements in each of your roles. This allows the admissions committee to gauge the impact you've made in your career, offering insights into your potential for leadership and growth. Your achievements, coupled with any professional certifications, paint a picture of your ability to succeed in challenging environments, which is essential for an MBA program.

A comprehensive and well-crafted resume should narrate your professional aspirations and milestones. It reflects your readiness for the demanding academic and professional milieu of an MBA program. If there are areas in your resume that could be enhanced, consider professional help to ensure it effectively captures your professional accomplishments, thereby strengthening your case in the admissions decision process.

Personal Statement/Essay

The personal statement is an opportunity in the admissions process to showcase your uniqueness and align your career goals with the program's ethos. The essay question allows you to demonstrate how your professional journey and future aspirations resonate with the values and offerings of the Pepperdine MBA program. It's essential to explore the connection between your past experiences and future goals, illustrating how the program's unique aspects will support your ambitions.

The personal statement/optional essay should include the motivations behind your career objectives, clarifying why you're pursuing this path and how an MBA will facilitate your journey. This narrative is an exploration of your aspirations and a demonstration of your communication skills, crucial for the program. The essay plays a significant role in the admissions process, influencing the admission committee's decision. It should be a genuine and thoughtful reflection of your potential for success.

GMAT or GRE Score

For those aiming to enroll in the Full-Time MBA program at Pepperdine University's Graziadio Business School, the GMAT or GRE scores are a key element of the application process. These scores, valid if taken within the last five years, play an important role in assessing analytical and quantitative skills.

Scores from the GMAT or GRE are typically required to complete your application. They offer a standardized measure of certain academic abilities, which are essential for the rigorous analytical demands of the MBA program.

Eligibility for Score Waivers

Pepperdine University provides the opportunity for a waiver of the GMAT or GRE requirement under certain conditions. Waivers are granted automatically based on the information provided in the application, but you must meet one of the specified criteria. These criteria include having a Bachelor’s, Master’s, or Doctoral degree in fields like Business, Engineering, Information and Computer Science, Science, Mathematics, or Psychology. Additionally, applicants with five or more years of full-time professional work experience (not including internships) or those who are U.S. military veterans are eligible for the waiver.

English Proficiency Score

International applicants whose official language isn't English must meet the English language requirements. English language tests such as TOEFL, PTE, and IELTS are specifically tailored to assess non-native English speakers' ability to understand and use English effectively at the graduate level. These tests serve as a standardized language assessment for international students whose native language is not English.

Meeting the minimum required score is essential for international applicants, as it ensures their capability to engage actively in class discussions, grasp course materials, and complete assignments efficiently in English. This proficiency is crucial for academic success in environments where English is the primary language of instruction.

For international candidates, the scores from these English language tests are an integral part of the application process. Submitting official scores from the testing agency that meet or exceed the required benchmarks not only fulfills the language requirements but also demonstrates to the admissions committee the applicant's readiness to excel in an academically rigorous environment where English is the primary language of study. It's a key indicator of an international student's ability to adapt and succeed in the program.


The admissions interview is a significant stage where candidates have the opportunity to showcase their potential as future business leaders. This interview provides the admissions committee with a window into the candidate's interpersonal skills, depth of experience, and suitability for graduate studies. It's a platform for applicants to articulate their understanding of the program and how it aligns with their career goals.

Thorough preparation for the interview is essential. Candidates should be well-informed about the MBA program's focus on real-world experiences and how it complements their professional experiences and aspirations. Demonstrating this knowledge not only shows commitment but also helps in clearly communicating why the program is a perfect fit for their career plans.

The interview also serves as a stage to highlight past academic and professional achievements, allowing candidates to share experiences where they have overcome challenges, exhibited leadership, or made a significant impact in their roles. These anecdotes provide the admissions committee with insights into the candidates' problem-solving abilities and leadership potential.

Additionally, the admissions interview is an opportunity for candidates to discuss their future goals. It's crucial to be articulate in explaining how the MBA program aligns with one's long-term career objectives. Candidates should convey how they envision their career path evolving and how the MBA program will play a role in this journey. This aspect of the interview is key to demonstrating that the candidate is not only competent based on past accomplishments but also shows promise for future success, distinguishing them in the competitive applicant pool.

Unique Aspects of the Full-Time MBA Program at Pepperdine University

Pepperdine University's Graziadio Business School offers a Full-Time MBA program that is distinguished by several unique features. These aspects are tailored to enhance your educational experience and provide you with the tools needed for success in the modern business world.

Flexible Duration

The Full-Time MBA program at Pepperdine offers flexibility in terms of duration, allowing you to choose between a 12-month and a 20-month format. This flexibility is ideal for accommodating different career plans and life situations.

  • 12-Month Program: Designed for those who wish to accelerate their learning and quickly re-enter the workforce, this intensive format is perfect for students who are ready to dedicate a full year to study without interruption.
  • 20-Month Program: This option provides a more relaxed pace, suitable for students who may want to balance their studies with work, internships, or other personal commitments.

Global Exposure

Global exposure is a cornerstone of the Full-Time MBA at Pepperdine. The program offers two main avenues for international experience:

  • Global Business Intensive Course: This 2-unit course is an immersive experience, focusing on the complexities and opportunities of conducting business on a global scale.
  • Trimester Exchange: Students have the opportunity to study abroad for a trimester at one of over 30 international partner universities. This experience not only broadens your academic horizons but also expands your global network and cultural understanding.

Experiential Learning through E2B™

The Education to Business (E2B™) program is a hallmark of experiential learning at Pepperdine. In this program, you will:

  • Work on real-world business challenges presented by actual companies.
  • Apply theoretical knowledge to practical situations, bridging the gap between classroom learning and business reality.
  • Gain invaluable insights from experienced professionals and foster connections that can influence your career path.

Specialized Certificate in SEER Business Strategy

The Certificate in Social, Environmentally, and Ethically Responsible (SEER) Business Strategy is a unique offering of the Full-Time MBA program. Through this certificate, you will:

  • Learn how to integrate social, environmental, and ethical responsibilities into business strategy.
  • Develop a comprehensive understanding of how sustainable practices can be a core advantage in business.
  • Prepare to be a leader in the growing field of sustainable and responsible business practices.

 Full-time MBA admission

Tips For Creating a Strong Application

Creating a standout application for your Full-Time MBA admission requires a careful and strategic approach. Here are some key tips to help you put together a strong application that meets all admissions requirements and showcases your abilities effectively:

  • Be Timely: Make sure to take note of the application deadline and submit the complete online application before this date. Submitting a late or incomplete application could delay the application process and cause you to miss the deadline.
  • Understand the Application Requirements: Carefully review all the application instructions provided by the MBA program. Ensure you understand each requirement, from academic background to professional recommendations and official score reports, and prepare your application accordingly.
  • Submit Professional Recommendations: Choose recommenders who can provide insightful comments on your work ethic, leadership skills, and professional achievements. Ensure they understand the admissions requirements to provide relevant recommendations.
  • Highlight Your Academic Background: Emphasize key aspects of your college-level education, including any honors, awards, or significant projects. This demonstrates your academic capabilities and readiness for graduate studies.
  • Follow Application Instructions Precisely: Adhere strictly to the guidelines regarding essay length, format, and other details. Deviating from these instructions can reflect poorly on your attention to detail.
  • Adopt a Holistic Approach: Showcase a balanced profile, highlighting not just your academic achievements but also extracurricular involvements, volunteer work, and other interests that demonstrate a well-rounded personality.
  • Be Mindful of the Admissions Timeline: Submit your application well before the deadline. This shows your commitment and also ensures that any unforeseen issues can be addressed without affecting your application.
  • Ensure Clarity of Documents: Avoid submitting illegible documents. All official records, transcripts, and supporting documents should be clear and easy to read. If necessary, provide translations for documents not in English.
  • Proofread Your Application: Check your application for any errors or typos. A well-written, error-free application reflects your professionalism and attention to detail.
  • Prepare for All Components: Give equal attention to every part of the application, from essays to the interview. Each component is an opportunity to showcase different facets of your experience and abilities.
  • Keep Track of Your Application Status: Utilize the online application portal to keep track of your application status.

Taking the Next Step in Your MBA Journey

As you stand at the threshold of an exciting new phase in your professional development, remember that the journey to achieving your MBA at Pepperdine University's Graziadio Business School begins with a single, decisive step. Now that you have gathered insights into the application process, understood the importance of each component, and recognized how to showcase your unique profile, it's time to take action.

We encourage you to start compiling your application materials, reflecting deeply on your career goals, and crafting your personal and optional essays with sincerity and purpose. Remember, each element of your application is a chance to demonstrate your potential and how you can contribute to and benefit from the Pepperdine MBA program.

Don't hesitate to reach out to the admissions team if you have any questions or need guidance. They are there to assist you through this exciting journey. As you prepare your application, keep in mind the application deadlines and ensure that your submission is thorough and timely.

Take this opportunity to propel your career forward. Begin your application today and take the first step towards joining the vibrant community at Pepperdine University's Graziadio Business School. Your future as a business leader starts here. Let your journey begin.