May 25, 2024  
2011-2012 CU Denver Catalog 
2011-2012 CU Denver Catalog [ARCHIVED CATALOG]

Business School

Complete course list for the Business School 

Dean: Sueann Ambron
Associate Dean of Faculty and Programs: Clifford E. Young
Associate Dean of Operations: Jean-Claude Bosch
Assistant Dean Programs: Linda J. Brooker
Assistant Dean Budget: M. Judy Chavez


Dean’s Office
CU-Denver Building
1250 14th Street, 2nd Floor
Fax: 303-315-8040

Mailing Address
The Business School
Campus Box 165
P.O. Box 173364
Denver, CO 80217-3364


Undergraduate: 303-315-8100
Graduate: 303-315-8200 

Application Deadlines

Fall—August 1
Spring—December 1
Summer—May 1

Fall—April 1
Spring—October 1
Summer—February 1

Executive MBA
Fall—June 1

11-Month MBA
Fall—June 15

Located in the heart of the Rocky Mountain business community, the Business School at the University of Colorado Denver prepares students with the knowledge and skills necessary to become effective, responsible business professionals. We’re able to achieve a standard of excellence by bringing together nationally recognized faculty and highly motivated, mature students in an intellectually challenging academic environment. UC Denver’s Business School is a research institution. Because our faculty are nationally recognized for scholarly research as well as for their teaching skills, our students have the opportunity to be on the leading edge of business management theory and practice. Our class schedules and curriculum offer flexibility to meet your needs whether you plan to attend full or part time, day or evening. Whether you’re an experienced working professional seeking an advanced degree or preparing for a new career in the business world, you’ll gain the knowledge and perspective necessary to succeed in today’s challenging business environment.

Educational Goals

The Business School is committed to superb teaching, connecting theory to practice that focuses on:

  • current and relevant knowledge and skills necessary for success in the highly competitive global business environment
  • experience in cooperative and team-based work skills
  • integrated professional and functional expertise
  • sensitivity to cultural and ethnic diversity

Our graduate programs serve both traditional and nontraditional students who have extensive work experience. The MBA serves the needs of students who desire a general business education. The professionally oriented MS degrees serve the needs of students who desire greater specialization, particularly students who have already obtained an undergraduate business degree. Large numbers of our graduate students will be drawn from national and international locales.

Our undergraduate program, which serves both traditional and nontraditional students, leads to a baccalaureate degree in business with a substantial liberal arts component. The program is closely linked, through articulation agreements, to lower-division programs offered by Colorado’s four-year and community colleges.

Key elements of our academic programs are the provision of top-quality career advising and placement services, as well as flexible schedules and programs to meet a wide range of student needs. We are committed to assisting our students’ efforts to pursue rewarding careers.


Our nationally recognized faculty is vigorous and enthusiastic about its teaching and research. Faculty members hold degrees from the nation’s leading business schools, including Berkeley, Harvard, Stanford, University of Chicago, University of Pennsylvania, UCLA and Yale. Many of them also bring years of valuable experience in private industry. Their interdisciplinary expertise, academic achievements, scholarly research and business experience provide students with a dynamic learning environment.

Scholarships and Financial Aid

Many programs for financial aid are administered by the Office of Financial Aid . Call 303-556-2886 for detailed information.

Thanks to the generous support of the Colorado business community and others, the Business School has a significant number of scholarships to offer its students. Scholarships are awarded on the basis of merit and/or financial need. The amount of the award and the number of awards available vary.

Thirty different scholarships are available to eligible Business School students, with multiple awards from most scholarships. Go to for more details.

  • Undergraduate scholarships include the Board of Advisors, the Business School Undergraduate Excellence, the Carolyn Lee Henderson, the Robert E. Moore Memorial, the Business School Sustaining Student, the Dean’s Community Scholarships, the Scholarship for International Study and the Dean’s Scholarship for Continuing Undergraduate Business Students.
  • The MBA Outstanding Scholar Award, the MBA Opportunity Scholarship and the MBA Faculty’s Scholarship are given to qualifying MBA students.
  • Accounting scholarships for both graduate and undergraduate accounting students include the Deloitte & Touche and Accounting Program Scholarship, as well as the Price water house Coopers Scholarship for undergraduate junior accounting majors only.
  • MS finance scholarships are the MS Finance Fellows, open to graduate students in the finance program, and the Carolyn Lee Henderson Scholarship, designated for students in the finance program.
  • MS health administration scholarships include the Abbott Fellows, AUPHA/McGaw, CU Denver MS Health Administration, Eugenie D. Sontag, Leland R. Kaiser, Medical Group Management and the MS Health Administration Alumni Scholarships.
  • MS information systems students may apply for the Dean’s Scholarship in Information Systems.
  • The MS international business Merit Scholarship is open to students in the CU Denver MS international business program.
  • MS management or human resources management students may apply for the Excellence in Management or the Excellence in Human Resource Management Scholarship.
  • MS marketing students may apply for the MS Marketing Sustaining Student, MS in Marketing Fellows and Robert E. Moore Memorial Scholarships (also open to undergraduate marketing students).
  • Four scholarships are available to students who take courses in entrepreneurial studies at the Richard H. and Pamela S. Bard Center for Entrepreneurship Development. These are the Coulter Foundation Scholarships in Entrepreneurial Studies and Business, and the Dean’s Pursuit of Excellence, Mehalchin and Trueblood Scholarships.

Further information about these scholarships, including eligibility criteria and application forms, may be obtained by visiting the Scholarship Resource Office website at or by calling 303-252-3608.

Study Abroad

Transfer credit from study abroad programs requires prior written approval from the undergraduate or graduate program director. Students must meet with a business staff advisor to determine course acceptability prior to the semester in which they intend to study abroad. Information on the various programs is available at the Office of International Affairs .

Institute for International Business

The Institute for International Business (IIB) was created in 1988 by the Board of Regents of the University of Colorado to serve as a center for the advanced study and teaching of international business. In 1993, the institute was designated a Center for International Business Education and Research by the U.S. Department of Education, one of only 25 such centers of excellence in the United States. Through the CIBER and other funding sources, the institute strives to help the faculties of the Business School and other university departments to internationalize curriculum, programs, certificates or other student-oriented endeavors. The IIB works in other ways to support faculty in their teaching, research and development activities. In addition, the institute designs and facilitates customized international programs and training for business, cooperates with other organizations to offer seminars and conferences and publishes a quarterly newsletter to familiarize the Denver and regional communities with international business issues. Such initiatives help faculty, students and the business community to acquire the skills and expertise needed to be successful in our increasingly global economy. The institute also conducts and promotes research on the global economic aspects of competitiveness. Call 303-315-8436 for information.


Internships are included in the experiential learning requirement of the undergraduate business program. To be eligible to enroll in an internship for experiential learning credit, the undergraduate student must meet the following grade and course work requirements:

  • the student must be in good standing with a cumulative GPA of at least 2.0, and a GPA in the area of emphasis of at least 2.0
  • the student must have completed (a) all required lower-division course work and (b) at least 21 semester hours of the business core courses

Graduate students must be admitted to the Business School, be in good standing with at least a 3.0 GPA and have completed 15 semester hours of graduate work at the Denver Campus.

Interested students should contact the Experiential Learning Center (303-556-6656) for further details about the program.

General Academic Policies


Academic policies that apply to all students at CU Denver are described on the Office of the Registrar website and in the University Policies  section of the catalog. The policies outlined on the following pages are relevant for both undergraduate and graduate students in the Business School. Individual policies appropriate only to undergraduate or graduate students are described under separate headings. Each student is responsible for knowing and complying with the academic policies and regulations established for the school. The school cannot assume responsibility for problems resulting from a student’s failure to follow the policies stated in this catalog. Similarly, students are responsible for all deadlines, rules and regulations stated on the student portal.

Academic Ethics

Students are expected to conduct themselves in accordance with the highest standards of honesty and integrity. Cheating, plagiarism, illegitimate possession and disposition of examinations, alteration, forgery, falsification of official records and similar acts or any attempt to engage in such acts are grounds for suspension or expulsion from the university. In particular, students are advised that plagiarism consists of any act involving the offering of the work of someone else as the student’s own. It is recommended that students consult with the instructors as to the proper preparation of reports, papers, etc., to avoid this and similar offenses. Also, actions that disrupt the administrative process, such as misrepresentation of credentials or academic status, other forms of deception or verbal abuse of university staff are grounds for suspension or probation. All discovered acts of dishonesty must be referred to the Business School’s Internal Affairs Committee.

Admission to Business Classes

Enrollment in business classes is limited to students who have been admitted to business degree programs and to other students as described in the separate undergraduate and graduate policy sections. The course registration criteria are designed to meet a number of objectives:

  • to assure access to business courses for students seeking a business degree
  • to serve students in other colleges who have business-related education objectives or requirements
  • to serve nondegree students who have specific career or education goals

Refer to the student portal each term for course availability and prerequisites.

Attendance Regulations

Students are required to attend classes, including online classes, on a regular basis. Absences must be arranged with the instructor and must conform with university and instructor policies on attendance.


Students are expected to know and fulfill all prerequisites when registering. Prerequisites are in place for the benefit of the student.  The Business School wants our students to have the best experience in their courses, and having the prerequisites for a course ensures that you are ready for the material that will be covered.  See course listings for relevant prerequisites as many are strictly enforced. The Business School reserves the right to administratively drop students who enroll without the correct prerequisites. This action may result in the loss of tuition.

Course Numbering

The course numbering system used at CU Denver identifies the class standing required for enrollment. Students are expected to take 1000-level courses in their freshman year, 2000-level courses in their sophomore year, 3000-level courses in their junior year and 4000-level courses in their senior year. Courses at the 5000 and 6000 level are restricted to master’s-level business students, and courses at the 7000 level are restricted to PhD students.

Adding Courses

Students may add courses to their original schedule through the census date (first 12 days of the fall or spring semester, first eight days of summer session). Instructor approval may be required to add a course after the first week of classes.  In some cases, failure to attend the first week of classes may result in an administrative drop from that course.

Dropping Courses

Students may drop a course through the census date and it will not appear on the transcript. After census, a student who wishes to drop must obtain written approval from both the instructor and academic dean or designate. The course and a grade of W will appear on the transcript. In order to drop beyond the 10th week, it will also be necessary to document circumstances beyond a student’s control. Any student who is failing a class will not be allowed to drop simply because of the grade, and an F will be recorded on the transcript. See the academic calendar for deadlines and costs involved.


See the Office of the Registrar website for universitywide withdrawal policies. Note that the Business School normally requires instructors’ signatures on withdrawal forms before the academic dean’s approval is granted.  If a student is dropping all classes in a particiular semester, the student must complete part III of the Schedule Adjustment Form and submit to the academic dean and financial aid (if receiving financial aid) for signatures.

Administrative Drop

The school reserves the right to administratively drop students who are incorrectly enrolled in business courses. Instructors also may recommend that students who fail to meet expected course attendance or course prerequisites be dropped from the course. Generally, students who are administratively dropped will not receive tuition refunds.

In some cases, failure to attend the first week of classes may result in an administrative drop from that course.

Note that students who never attend class are not automatically dropped from the course. The student is responsible for dropping courses and failure to do so will result in a tuition charge for the class and an “F” grade. 

Appeal Procedure

Students should contact a staff advisor in the Business School’s programs office (undergraduates call 303-315-8100; graduate students call 303-315-8200) for appeal and petition procedures pertaining to rules and regulations of the school. For grade appeals, contact the Business School dean’s office at 303-315-8000.

General Grading Policies

Plus/Minus Grading. Faculty have the option to use plus/minus grading.

Incomplete Grades. The only incomplete grade given in the school is I. An I grade is assigned only when documented circumstances clearly beyond the student’s control prevent completion of course requirements (exams, papers, etc.). Students must sign a contract outlining how they will make up the missing work with the instructor giving the I. Students need not register for the course a second time. All I grades must be made up within the contract period (which may not exceed one year), or the I will automatically be changed to the grade of F.

Also, I grades must be completed and recorded at the Office of the Registrar no later than four weeks prior to graduation. The student is responsible for contacting the instructor to schedule the completion of the coursework.

Grade Changes. Grades as reported by instructors are final. Grade changes will be considered only in cases of documented clerical errors or when a student is making up an incomplete grade (I). All changes must be made within one year after the course has been taken, unless highly unusual circumstances can be documented and the change has been approved by the school. Normally, grade changes will not be considered under any circumstances after three years.

Pass-Fail or No Credit (Audit). With the exception of internships, experiential learning and travel study courses, the Business School does not permit election of pass-fail grading for any business course required for the student’s degree. Students are not allowed to audit business courses.

Academic Programs


A carefully designed curriculum to prepare students for success in business administration is available for the student seeking either an undergraduate or graduate degree. The school offers courses leading to the bachelor of science in business administration (BS), master of business administration (MBA), the master of science (MS) and doctor of philosophy (PhD) degrees.

It is possible to pursue two degrees simultaneously, such as an MBA and an MS, or two MS degrees, through our dual degree programs. In addition to the programs in the Business School itself, we partner with other university departments to offer dual programs in MS finance/economics and the MBA in combination with graduate programs in architecture, economics, urban planning and the MD. We also have a joint MBA/MS in international management degree with the Thunderbird School of Global Management in Glendale, Arizona.

Undergraduate Degree Programs


Associate Dean: Clifford E. YoungAcademic Director: Ronald Ramirez
Director Advising and Admissions: Nancy A. Reed

The undergraduate curriculum leading to the bachelor of science (business administration) degree is intended to help the student achieve the following general objectives:

  • an understanding of the activities that constitute a business enterprise and the principles underlying administration of those activities
  • the ability to think logically and analytically about the kind of complex problems encountered by management
  • facility in the arts of communication
  • a comprehension of human relationships involved in an organization
  • awareness of the social and ethical responsibilities of those in administrative positions
  • skill in the art of learning that will help the student continue self-education after leaving the campus

Undergraduate Admissions

Telephone: 303-315-8100
Fax: 303-315-8199

Admission of Freshman Students

Freshman applicants must have completed the college preparatory curriculum in high school, graduated in the top 25 percent of their high school class and achieved a score of at least 26 on the ACT or 1100 on the SAT. See Information for Undergraduate Students  for further information on freshman admission.

Admission of Transfer Students

Applicants who have completed work at other collegiate institutions should review the information for transfer students in Information for Undergraduate Students . In addition to general university transfer policies, the Business School evaluates course work to determine its appropriateness for the degree bachelor of science (business administration). Students who have completed more than 24 semester hours of transferable course work are evaluated for admission on the basis of their college GPA without regard to their high school performance. Transfer applicants with fewer than 24 transferable hours will be evaluated on the basis of both high school and college work.

Applicants are evaluated only on course work that applies to the business degree program. Generally, this will exclude course work of a technical or vocational nature and courses in activity PE and remedial subjects. For information about specific policies on transfer of credit, consult the undergraduate business program coordinator.

For admission to the Business School, a transfer applicant must have a minimum 3.0 GPA for all work applicable to the bachelor of science (business administration) degree and a 2.0 GPA in business courses. Applicants with less than an overall 3.0 GPA may be evaluated and admitted on a space available basis.

Intra-University Transfer

Students who want to transfer to the Business School from another college or school of the University of Colorado Denver must formally apply to the Business School. To apply for an intra-university transfer, students must submit an intra-university transfer (IUT) form and transcripts from University of Colorado to the business program coordinator. Transfer forms are available at the Office of Admissions or the Business School Advising Office; transcript request forms are available at the Office of the Registrar. The transcript must include the student’s most recent semester at the university. Students with previous course work from other institutions are also required to submit a copy of their transfer credit evaluations (advanced standings). Transfer deadlines are August 1 for fall semester, December 1 for spring semester and May 1 for the summer session. In general, the admission standards for intra-university transfer are the same as for transfer from other institutions as listed above.

Former Students

A University of Colorado student from another campus, or a Denver campus student who has not registered for three consecutive semesters (summers included), is considered a former student and must reapply for admission. Former Denver campus business degree students will be automatically readmitted to the school for up to three years from the semester they last attended if they are in good standing (not on probation or suspension) in the school. Students who have not attended for more than three years, or who have completed the equivalent of 12 or more semester hours at another institution of higher education, must meet the admission and degree requirements applicable at the time they reapply.

Old Work Policy

For students newly admitted to the Business School and former business students readmitted to the school after an absence of three semesters, applicable credits up to five years old will be counted toward business degree requirements. Courses more than five years old will be evaluated individually for their current relevance to the degree program. Students may be required to update their knowledge by taking additional courses when past courses are outdated; in such cases, credit will be given for both courses. Generally, business courses more than 10 years old will not apply toward degree credit.

Second Undergraduate Degree

Students may apply to the Business School to earn a second undergraduate degree, provided the first undergraduate degree is in a field other than business. Persons who have already earned an undergraduate degree in business may not apply for a second undergraduate degree in business. Applications are available through the Office of Admissions.

If a student has an academic record that justifies consideration for a graduate program, that student is encouraged to apply for one of the Business School’s master’s degree programs. Call 303-315-8200 for information or refer to the graduate business section of the catalog.

Students who are accepted for the second undergraduate degree will be required to pursue courses in the sequence normally required for a business degree. For example, if a student registered for a second degree has not had the required mathematics or general education courses, these must be taken before the student will be eligible to register for business courses. Further, the basic business courses (core courses) must be taken before a student begins to pursue the major field.

Double Degree Programs

Numerous career opportunities exist for persons trained in both a specialized field and management. For this reason, students may be interested in combined programs of study leading to completion of degree requirements concurrently in two fields. For additional information, contact an undergraduate business staff advisor at 303-315-8100.

Undergraduate Advising and Academic Planning

Admissions Advising

Persons not yet admitted to the Business School can receive advising on course selection, admission requirements and other matters from an undergraduate staff advisor. To make an appointment, call 303-315-8100.

Admitted Students

Upon admission to the school, students execute a degree plan that identifies the courses required to graduate. This plan contains all the information needed to select courses and monitor progress toward completion of requirements for the bachelor of science (business administration). Business students are expected to assume responsibility for their own advising. This includes scheduling courses each term, meeting prerequisite requirements, being familiar with all the policies and procedures of the college and otherwise managing their own academic careers. Staff advisors are available to answer questions about unusual situations.

Career advising is available from the Career Center, 303-556-2250.

Undergraduate Core Curriculum—University of Colorado Denver

The faculty of the Business School, College of Engineering and Applied Science and the College of Liberal Arts and Sciences have established a core curriculum for undergraduate students. All undergraduate students are required to complete the undergraduate core curriculum in dependent of their college or major.

The undergraduate core curriculum for the Denver campus is outlined here ; the core requirements for business students are specified in the section labeled “Business Program Requirements.”

The undergraduate core curriculum seeks to provide all baccalaureate students with basic intellectual competencies in English, mathematics, biological and physical sciences, behavioral sciences, social sciences, humanities and arts. Furthermore, the core curriculum promotes an awareness of cultural diversity and international perspective. The majority of the core curriculum is designed to be completed during a student’s freshman and sophomore years in order to provide the foundation for specific training in a student’s major discipline.

Graduation Requirements

The bachelor of science (business administration) degree requires the following:

Total Credits. A total of 120 semester hours.

A minimal level of proficiency must be demonstrated in one foreign language or in regional expertise. Students may satisfy the proficiency requirement by taking courses as described below.

Area of Emphasis. Completion of at least 9–21 semester hours of approved courses in the area of emphasis.

Residence. At least 30 semester hours of business courses (including the business area of emphasis) must be completed after a student’s admission to the Business School. The 30 hours for residence must include MGMT 4500 and 27 hours in other 4000-level business courses (including area of emphasis courses).

GPA Requirement. To graduate, a student must maintain a minimum cumulative scholastic GPA of 2.0 for all courses attempted at the university acceptable toward the BS (business administration) degree, 2.0 for all business courses and 2.0 for courses in the student’s area of emphasis.

Undergraduate Honors. Upon recommendation of the faculty, students who demonstrate superior scholarship are given special recognition at graduation. Students must achieve an overall University of Colorado GPA of 3.3 and a GPA of 3.5 in all business courses taken at the University of Colorado to be considered for cum laude. Those who achieve an overall University of Colorado GPA of 3.5 and a GPA of 3.7 in all business courses taken at the University of Colorado will be considered for magna cum laude. Those who achieve a 3.7 overall GPA and a 3.85 GPA in all business courses will be considered for summa cum laude.

Filing for Graduation. A senior audit is completed on all students who have completed 90 or more semester hours. Students must file an undergraduate candidacy form and diploma card and request a graduation evaluation prior to registering for their final semester. Failure to do so will delay graduation. Also, students desiring to change their area of emphasis after filing for graduation must have the change approved by the graduation coordinator prior to registering for their final semester. Changes after that time will delay graduation.


Undergraduate Core Curriculum for BS in Business

Intellectual Competencies

English, 6 semester hours
Mathematics, 3 semester hours

Knowledge Areas, 6-7 semester hours total

Biological and Physical Sciences, 3 semester hours
Humanities, 3 semester hours
Arts, 3 semester hours
Behavioral Sciences, 3 semester hours
Social Sciences, 3 semester hours

Cultural Diversity, 3 semester hours total

International Perspectives, 3 semester hours total

34 semester hours total

Business Program Requirements

Satisfaction of all the following:

Program Requirements

School proficiencies or other courses, 0-10 semester hours
CU Denver Downtown Campus core , 34 semester hours
Business School specific graduation requirements - see Business School policy, 12 semester hours
Business core, 33 semester hours
International studies, 3 semester hours
Experiential learning, 3 semester hours
Area of emphasis and other courses, 21 semester hours
Other business and nonbusiness courses, 4 semester hours
120 semester hours total

Detailed descriptions of degree course plans that satisfy program requirements follow:

Business School Foreign Language Hours Proficiency

The Business School’s foreign language requirement or regional expertise for the 2008–2009 academic year requires that students demonstrate a minimum level of proficiency in one foreign language.

This requirement is met through completion of one of the following:

  • a second-year (Level II) high school course with a minimum grade of C (2.0)*
  • a second-semester-level college course (1020) with a minimum grade of C (2.0)
  • satisfactory proficiency testing, including taking and passing a proficiency exam

*High school courses will not apply toward degree credit; however, they will waive the specific requirement from having to be done at the college level.

Student’s choosing the regional expertise requirement with one year of high school foreign language or one semester of college level work can satisfy the requirement by completing a minimum of 6 semester hours of course work from an approved list that relates to the politics, arts, history, culture or economy of any region of the world other than North America.

Courses used in the expertise area must meet the Business School guidelines and can be chosen from the list specified by the Business School. Students should contact their business advisor to outline their program, 303-556-5800.

Students who must meet all the proficiency requirements through course work at CU Denver may find it necessary to complete more than 120 semester hours to earn the BS in business administration. The proficiency requirement must be completed during the first three terms in attendance at the Denver campus. 

Academic Policies for Selecting Courses



For registration, go online to

Maximum Units per Term

The normal scholastic load of an undergraduate business student is 15 semester hours, with a maximum of 18 hours allowed during the fall/spring semesters and 12 hours allowed during the summer session. Hours carried concurrently in the Division of Continuing Education, University of Colorado Boulder, or the CU Denver Extended Studies Programs, whether in classes or through correspondence, are included in the student’s term load.

Repeating Courses

A failed course (grade of F) may be repeated; however, the F will be included in the GPA and will appear on the transcript. Students must earn at least a C grade in required business core courses. Core business courses must be repeated if the student earns less than a C grade.

Courses from Other Institutions

Business students must have the written approval of the business program director to register for courses (excluding MSCD pooled courses) offered by other institutions, including other University of Colorado locations. Credit will not be given for courses taken without approval. Grades of C or better must be earned to receive business degree credit. Generally, only nonbusiness electives or lower-division, nonbusiness requirements are acceptable for transfer from other institutions once a student has been admitted to the Business School. Students who, after admission to the college, take more than 12 semester hours from another institution, must reapply for admission to the college as transfer students and must meet the current admission requirements.

Metropolitan State College of Denver Courses

Business students may select their nonbusiness required and elective courses from those offered by MSCD. Grades of C or better must be earned to receive business degree credit; however, the grade is not computed in the University of Colorado GPA and is treated like other transfer credits. MSCD business courses may not be taken for CU Denver business degree credit.

Graduate-Level Courses

With prior written approval of the business program coordinator, students may take a maximum of 6 semester hours of graduate-level nonbusiness elective credits. Students must earn grades of B or better in graduate courses to apply the credits toward business degree requirements.


Only internships, independent studies and nonbusiness elective courses may be taken pass/fail. Required business and nonbusiness courses (including the campus core) may not be taken pass/fail. A maximum of 6 hours pass/fail credit may be applied toward the business degree. Courses taken in excess of the maximum will not be applied toward degree credit. Pass/fail determination must be made within the posted deadlines (at census dates) and may not be rescinded (unless approved by the undergraduate committee).

Correspondence Courses

Only 6 semester hours of credit taken through correspondence study (from regionally accredited institutions) will be applied toward the business degree. Business courses may not be taken by correspondence. All correspondence courses must be evaluated by the business program coordinator to determine their acceptability toward degree requirements, and the program coordinator’s written approval is required prior to the student’s registering for courses. Students may contact the Division of Continuing Education, University of Colorado Boulder, for correspondence course offerings and registration procedures.

Independent Study

Junior or senior business students desiring to work beyond regular course coverage may take variable credit courses (1–3 semester hours) as nonbusiness electives under the direction of an instructor who approves the project, but the student must have the appropriate approval before registering. A maximum of 3 semester hours of independent study course work may be taken in any one semester; a maximum of 6 semester hours may be applied toward degree requirements. An independent study request form must be signed by the student, the instructor, the program director and the director of advising and admissions.

Academic Policies for Suspension and Probation


To be in good standing, students must maintain an overall University of Colorado GPA of 2.0 (C = 2.0) or better for all course work attempted and a 2.0 GPA or better for all business courses attempted. PE activity courses, remedial course work, MSCD courses and repeated courses not approved by a business advisor are not included in this average. When semester grades become available, students falling below the 2.0 GPA will be notified of (1) probationary status or (2) suspension. Students are responsible for being aware of their academic status at all times; late grades and/or late grade notification does not waive this responsibility. School rules governing probation and suspension are as follows:

  1. Any student whose overall GPA or business course GPA is less than 2.0 will be placed on probation immediately. A student may be removed from probation when the overall GPA and business GPA have been raised to 2.0.
  2. A student may remain on probation as long as he/she maintains normal degree progress each semester as determined by the school and each term, while on probation, obtains an overall term GPA of 2.5 and term business course GPA of 2.5, with no grade below a C. Failure to meet probationary provisions will result in suspension. Probationary status may continue only until the student has completed a maximum of 12 semester hours or four terms, whichever comes first; summer is considered a term. The student will be suspended if the GPA deficiency is not cleared within this time.
  3. Suspended students may not attend any campus of the University of Colorado or any division of the university (including continuing education or extended studies credit classes).
  4. Students on suspension may petition for readmission to the school after waiting a minimum of one year from the term in which they were suspended. Generally, petitions are granted only in unusual circumstances. Any suspended student re-admitted to the school will be under contract and placed on a continued probation status until the GPA deficiency has been cleared. Such students will be automatically suspended if, at any time, their overall GPA or business GPA again falls below 2.0.
  5. Students earning all failing grades for a semester will have a dean’s stop placed on their record and will not be permitted to register without a business advisor’s approval.
  6. Combined degree students are required to maintain the same standards of performance as Business School students in order to be continued in a combined program.

Undergraduate Areas of Emphasis


Business students must choose an area of emphasis and complete the requirements for the area. The area of emphasis provides specialization beyond the general background that is provided by the undergraduate core and the business core, both of which are required to be fulfilled prior to completing the area of emphasis courses. Areas of emphasis within the BS in business administration program include:

Graduate Business Programs (MBA/MS/PhD)


Associate Dean: Clifford E. Young
Assistant Dean: Linda J. Brooker
Telephone: 303-315-8200
Fax: 303-315-8199

The Business School offers programs leading to a doctor of philosophy, the master of business administration and the master of science in specific fields of business and health administration. In addition, the master of business administration for executives (executive MBA) is offered as a multi campus program of the University of Colorado business schools, and the executive program in health administration (executive MBA/HA) is offered through the executive health network.

The PhD, MBA, executive MBA, MS and BS degrees in business are accredited by AACSB International, the Association to Advance Collegiate Schools of Business. The health administration MBA and MS degrees are also accredited by the Commission on Accreditation of Healthcare Management Education (CAHME).  The accounting programs have earned a seperate AACSB International accreditation.

For a list of graduate business programs, see Program Curricula below.

Requirements for Admission to the MBA and MS Programs



Persons contemplating graduate study are encouraged to learn about admission and program requirements by scheduling an appointment with a graduate advisor or attending one of the regularly scheduled prospective student information meetings. Call 303-315-8200 to schedule an appointment.

Admission to the graduate programs in business is granted only to students showing high promise of success in graduate business study. Admission is based on the following indicators of the candidate’s likelihood to succeed in the program.

Academic Record

The bachelor’s degree must be earned from a regionally accredited university. The total academic record is considered, including the GPA, the course of study, and the quality of the program.

Required Testing

The GMAT or GRE is required for admission consideration for any applicant who does not have a previously awarded master’s degree. The GMAT or GRE is administered at numerous centers throughout the world. For information and to register for the test, write to: GMAT/GRE, Educational Testing Service, CN 6103, Princeton, NJ 08541; or phone 1-800-GMATNOW; or visit The code numbers for CU Denver’s graduate business programs are as follows:

11-Month MBA: MPB-0G-65
PhD: MPB-OG-29

GMAT is required for the 11-Month MBA and preferred for the MS in finance degree.  Students may petition to have a GRE score reviewed for the MS finance degree, but the decision is on a case by case basis.  No waivers of the GMAT will be accepted for the MS in accounting degree.

Work Experience

A record of appropriate employment at increasing levels of responsibility is considered a positive indicator of the likelihood of successful completion of graduate work. A resume must be submitted with the application materials.

Background Requirements

Students applying for graduate programs in business do not need an undergraduate degree in business. The MBA program is specifically designed so that the required courses cover the material needed for completion of the degree. There are no prerequisites needed to start the MBA program. Students with non-business backgrounds have completed the program successfully. Applicants for the MS degrees, however, may be required to take background or common body of knowledge courses, depending on the individual’s academic background. For more detailed information, phone the graduate programs office to schedule an appointment with a graduate academic advisor, 303-315-8200.

It is expected that students have an adequate level of personal computer proficiency in a word processing and spreadsheet software, as well as a good working knowledge of basic algebra and English grammar.

The Admission Process

Mailing address for applications:

Graduate Admissions
The Business School
University of Colorado Denver
Campus Box 165, P.O. Box 173364
Denver, CO 80217-3364

Students seeking admission to the 11-Month MBA, MBA with an emphasis in health administration, MS in health administration or executive programs should consult with the relevant catalog sections for additional application criteria or requirements.

Domestic Application Requirements

  • Complete parts I and II of the application for graduate admission and the four essay questions.
  • Have required GMAT or GRE scores sent directly to the graduate business admissions office from the Educational Testing Service. The code for CU Denver’s graduate business programs are as follows:

11-Month MBA: MPB-0G-65
PhD: MPB-OG-29

  • Have two official transcripts (not student copies) mailed directly from each school, college, and university ever attended past high school. Transcripts must be sent even if credit course work completed was not part of a degree program or was taken after an undergraduate degree was earned.
  • Resumé
  • Enclose a check for $50 for the MBA, MS or PhD programs, or $80 for the dual MBA/MS or dual MS/MS, made payable to the University of Colorado. Personal interviews are not required, except for the 11-month MBA and the MBA and MS in health administration. 

Deadlines. To be considered for admission, applicants for graduate programs must submit all materials prior to the following dates:

February 1 for summer session admission
April 1 for fall semester admission
October 1 for spring semester admission

The 11-Month MBA option only admits students each fall. The application deadline for the 11-Month MBA is June 15.

Early applications are encouraged because, if admitted, the student receives priority for registration time assignment. Applications received after published deadlines with complete supporting documentation, scores, fees and transcripts will be considered, but do not receive priority handling. In some cases, course availability is limited for the later applicants.

International Application Requirements

See Information for International Students .

Academic Policies for Graduate Students


As soon as possible after being admitted, students should schedule an appointment with a graduate advisor to discuss general degree requirements and determine if any background course work may be required and/or what common body of knowledge courses or prerequisites might be waived for the MS degrees.

Degree Plan

All students are encouraged to meet with a graduate advisor during their first semester to review their degree plan. Students are encouraged to meet with a graduate advisor throughout their program to ensure the correct sequencing of courses. An advising hold will be placed on students beginning an MS in accounting, an MS in health administration and an MBA in health administration.

Course Load

The normal course load for full-time graduate students is 9–15 semester hours. However, because many students are also pursuing a career, it is possible to attend classes on a part-time basis by enrolling in 3–6 semester hours. For financial aid purposes, 6 semester hours of graduate study is considered full time during the fall and spring terms and 3 semester hours for the summer term. Graduate courses are scheduled primarily in the evening or online to accommodate work schedules.

Transfer of Credit

Upon approval of the program director, a maximum of 12 semester hours of graduate business course work may be transferred to the MBA and 9 semester hours for the MS degrees (9 semester hours for each the MBA and MS degree if under a dual program). Courses must have been taken from another AACSB accredited graduate school of business and completed within the last five years with a grade of at least B (not B-). No transfer courses will be accepted if they have been used to satisfy degree requirements of a previously awarded degree. Graduate business courses taken at other University of Colorado campuses are considered transfer hours and are included in the transfer limit. Transfer of quarter hours of graduate business credit may satisfy a course requirement, but may not satisfy the total number of hours requirement. One quarter hour equals .667 semester hours.

Time Limits

Master’s students are required to complete all degree requirements within five years and one semester (seven years and one semester to earn dual MBA/MS or MS/MS degrees, or a PhD).Courses completed outside of these time limits will not be accepted toward the degree without petition. Time-limit extensions are given only for external situations that restrict a student’s ability to complete the program in a timely manner. If you do not take graduate business courses for more than three consecutive semesters, you will need to reapply for admission and meet the admission standards for the application term.

Former Students

Any Denver campus student who has not been enrolled in his or her admitted program of study for three consecutive semesters (summers included) is considered a former student and must reapply for admission to the program by submitting part I of the application for graduate admission, in-state tuition classification form, along with the applicable fee. Readmitted students must conform to degree requirements in effect during the term in which they are readmitted. If the new requirements differ significantly from the former degree plan, a petition may be submitted requesting exceptions.


Students must complete the online intent to graduate form on the registrar’s website ( when they register for their last semester. Contact the graduate advising office to confirm receipt at

Grade Point Average Requirements

A minimum cumulative GPA of 3.0 must be achieved and maintained for courses taken toward a graduate business degree. All CU Denver graduate business courses are computed in the graduate business GPA. Transfer hours and grades from other institutions, including University of Colorado courses taken at the Boulder, Anschutz Medical Campus, and Colorado Springs Campuses are not computed in the business GPA, although degree credit may be awarded through a petition process.

Probation and Suspension

If after completing 9 semester hours a student’s cumulative graduate business GPA falls below 3.0, the student will be placed on academic probation and given three semesters (one calendar year) or 9 semester hours of graduate business course work (whichever occurs first) in which to achieve the required 3.0 cumulative average. Failure to achieve the required GPA within the allotted time period will result in suspension for one year. Suspended students may not attend any campus of the University of Colorado including continuing education/extended studies. Students on suspension may petition for readmission to the school after waiting a minimum of one year from the term in which they were suspended. If a student cannot mathematically achieve the required 3.0 cummulative GPA with the remaining required courses, the petition to return will not be approved.  A petition form plus a new graduate application part I and in-state tuition classification form must be submitted along with the appropriate fee. Generally, petitions are granted only on rare occasions. Any suspended student readmitted to the school will be placed on a continued probation status until the GPA deficiency has been cleared. They will again have three semesters or 9 semester hours to reach the required 3.0 GPA.  Failure to do so will resut in a permanent suspension.   

Passing Grades

Any grade below a C (2.0) is a failing grade for graduate students. Graduate students must repeat a required course for which they have received a grade below a C. Both the original grade and the grade for the repeated course count in the computation of the business GPA.

Repeating Graduate Business Courses

A failed course (any grade below a C) must be repeated if it is a required course. Both the original and the repeated grade will be included in the cummulative GPA and will appear on the transcript. A course in which a grade of C or better is obtained may not be repeated without written approval from the assistant dean. Those petitions are granted only on rare occasions.  Both grades will remain on the student’s transcript and both grades will be cacluated into the students cummulative GPA.  Graduate business courses repeated without approval may not be used in the graduate business GPA calculation.


Classes dropped prior to census date will not appear on the transcript. Thereafter, to drop with a grade of W, a student must be earning a grade of C or better; otherwise, an F will appear on the transcript. Students will not be permitted to drop a course or withdraw from all courses after the 10th week of the semester, unless circumstances outside the student’s control are documented. The late request to drop or withdraw must be approved by the assistant dean and the course instructor(s).

Registration for Graduate Business Courses

Students admitted to graduate degree programs have priority for graduate business courses. Nondegree students and graduate students from other University of Colorado schools or colleges may be permitted to attend on a space-available basis by meeting the qualifications and submitting a nondegree application form.  Some graduate-level (6000-level) courses may be offered simultaneously with undergraduate 4000-level courses. However most 6000-level courses are reserved exclusively for graduate students.

Master of Business Administration Programs


The master of business administration (MBA) program provides a general background in management and administration. This background enables the student to have the breadth of exposure and depth of knowledge required for an advanced-level management career. The program is devoted to developing the concepts, analytical tools and communication skills required for competent and responsible administration of an enterprise viewed in its entirety, within its social, political and economic environment.

The professional MBA program allows the scheduling of classes with maximum flexibility so students can progress through the program at their own pace, by taking as little as one class per semester or as many as five classes per semester, at times that are convenient to their work schedule. The program can be completed in as little as 16 months or as long as five years plus one semester.

Online courses add additional flexibility. Students may complete all degree requirements online, or combine online and campus courses to broaden the choice of electives or to fit a business travel schedule or personal learning style. All the core courses are offered online in the fall and spring terms, but your choice of online electives is limited.

The MBA program is also available in different configurations: 11-month (full time, see relevant section), health administration and the executive MBA (see relevant section). All MBAs have the same curriculum requirements; they differ only in their focus, the flexibility of course scheduling and the time required to complete the program. The 11-month and executive MBAs are lockstep programs (no open electives, no specialized tracks), where all the students complete all program requirements together. No course transfers, waivers or substitutions are permitted in the lockstep programs.

For a list of MBA programs, see Program Curricula below.

Master of Science Programs


Master of science degrees (MS) are offered in the fields of accounting, decision sciences, finance, global energy management, health administration, information systems, international business, management and marketing.

The MS degree affords the opportunity for specialization and depth of training within a particular field. The specialization and expertise developed within the MS program prepares the student for more specialized staff positions in industry, the nonprofit sector and government.

The course requirements for the MS degree in each of the fields are divided into two components—common body of knowledge (CBK) and graduate core requirements. The common body of knowledge requires business courses to develop general breadth and competence in the fields of business administration. These requirements differ among degree programs. Some common body of knowledge requirements may be waived if evidence of equivalent undergraduate or graduate-level coursework is shown and the course work is no more than 10 years old. An undergraduate degree in business administration earned from an AACSB or regionally accredited university will meet most of the CBK requirements. The graduate core requires at least 30 semester hours of graduate-level courses. BUSN courses lower than 6800 may not be used as free electives in the MS programs. Contact a graduate staff advisor for any exceptions.

No comprehensive exams are required.

For a list of graduate MS programs, see Program Curricula below.

Dual Degree Programs


Dual degree program options within the Business School include:

Please be aware that admission into one of our programs does not guarantee admission into another program.  If adding a dual, you must meet the admission requirements for both programs.  All programs have their own unique admissions requirements.

PhD CSIS Program


Program co-directors: Gita Alaghband and Mike Mannino
Telephone: 303-556-4314 (Alaghband), 303-315-8427 (Mannino)

The computer science and engineering (CSE) department in the College of Engineering and Applied Science and the Business School offer a joint doctor of philosophy degree program in computer science and information systems (CSIS) . The program targets students who have a master’s-level education in either computer science or information systems and who seek research training that combines CS and IS along with strong industry interaction. The joint PhD program provides training for academic positions, industrial research positions and senior consulting positions. The specific goals of the program complement these general goals:

  • create a pool of graduates with CSIS research training who are qualified for academic and non-academic careers
  • meet student demand for advanced training in CSIS with accommodations for full-time and part-time students
  • promote interdisciplinary research between the computer science and engineering department and the Business School
  • enhance technology transfer between CSIS academic units and front range technology businesses through joint research, student internships, faculty externships and committee participation


Prospective students apply to either the Department of Computer Science and Engineering or the Business School. Applicants who pass the initial screening are reviewed by a joint committee consisting of the two co-directors of the program for the final admittance decision.

Admission criteria include GPA (undergraduate and graduate), standardized test scores (GMAT or GRE), letters of recommendation, prior achievements in academia and industry and the application portfolio essay describing an applicant’s motivation and an initial plan for doctoral study. The application portfolio is important to gauge an applicant’s motivation for research training.

Because of the program’s goals, preference is given to students with a master’s degree in either computer science or information systems. Students without a master’s degree in either area will need to take additional course work depending on the student’s background.

Program Organization

Supervision of the PhD Program

The PhD program is supervised by co-directors from the Business School and the CSE department. The duties of the co-directors include scheduling of doctoral courses, setting program policies subject to approval of the Business School and the CSE faculty, working with advisors and doctoral committee chairs to ensure compliance with the program guidelines, resolving disputes, measuring performance of the program over time and providing the final decision on admittance of students.


Upon entering the program, each student chooses an advisor who will provide mentoring and guidance in the course of the entire program. The advisor will work with the student to prepare a program of study in the course work part of the program. The advisor will also work with the student in the preparation of the first- and second-year papers. Requests to change the advisor must be approved by the co-directors of the PhD program.

Dissertation Committee

The advisor and four other members form a dissertation committee. To foster interdisciplinary work, you may have your dissertation research co-advised by two faculty members. At least one co-advisor must be a full-time current graduate faculty member in the CSE department or the Business School. The committee must contain at least one faculty member from the CSE department and at least one from the Business School. At least one committee member is from outside of the CSE department and the information systems faculty.

Executive Programs


Executive MBA

Faculty and Resources

The faculty are senior faculty of the Business Schools from three of the university’s campuses. The executive MBA program  is offered jointly by the Graduate Schools of Business Administration in Boulder and Colorado Springs and the Business School in Denver. Faculty are nationally recognized, and all possess both practical managerial experience and a demonstrated ability to work effectively with executive-level students.

Admission Requirements

The executive MBA program is designed for men and women who have eight to 10 years experience in a decision-making position. In the selection process, significant attention will be given to the depth and breadth of the candidate’s experience, progression in job responsibility, total work experience and the ability to benefit from this integrative classroom/work environment. The admissions committee will base its decision on the application, former academic record, relevant test scores, the employer’s nominating letter, other letters of recommendation and a personal interview.

For application and additional information, write to:

Executive MBA Program
University of Colorado Denver
P.O. Box 480006
Denver, CO 80248-0006

Executive MBA in Health Administration

Program Manager: Pete Taffe
Telephone: 303-623-1888 or 1-800-228-5778

Program Sponsors

The executive program in health administration  is a cooperative program of CU Denver and the Network for Healthcare Management.

The University of Colorado Denver serves as the degree-granting institution for the executive program. The graduate program in health administration is located in the Business School.

The Network for Healthcare Management is an educational consortium representing healthcare executives and academic faculty from major health administration graduate programs in the United States and Canada, including Arizona State University, Northwestern University, Ohio State University, San Diego State University, the University of California at Berkeley, the University of California at Los Angeles, the University of Colorado Denver, the University of Michigan, the University of Missouri, the University of North Carolina, the University of Southern California, the University of Toronto, the University of Washington and Virginia Commonwealth University.

Program Curricula




Bachelor of Science in Business Administration

Non Degree

Master of Business Administration

Master of Business Administration/Master of Science

Master of Business Administration/Master of Global Management

Master of Business Administration/Doctor of Medicine

Master of Business Administration/Master of Urban and Regional Planning

Master of Science

Master of Science/Master of Arts

Master of Science/Master of Science

Doctor of Philosophy