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Admissions – Frequently Asked Questions

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What is the admissions process for the masters program?
All applicants to the MA program must complete the online University application. We do not need to receive all application materials at the same time. In addition, you must provide the following information: resume, transcripts, GRE or GMAT scores, English language proficiency exam (if required for international applicants), and letters of recommendation. Detailed admissions information is available at Admissions Process
What are the prerequisites for admission to the master's program?
We do not require any specific undergraduate major. Admitted students have degrees in fields ranging from engineering to the fine arts. Common majors include psychology, business, economics, human resources, and speech communications. Before enrolling, all students must complete an undergraduate course in microeconomics with a grade of C or better. We also recommend but do not require introductory courses in macroeconomics, general psychology, and statistics.
What is the application deadline?
The full-time program only admits students for fall entry. The priority application deadline and the deadline for consideration for financial aid is February 1st. After that date, we consider and admit applicants on a rolling basis until the program is full. For the part-time program, students can start in either the fall or spring. The application deadline for fall entry is June 15th. For spring entry, students should apply by October 15th.
Do I have to take the GRE or the GMAT? Is there a minimum score needed?
Master's applicants must submit either Graduate Record Examination (GRE) or Graduate Management Admission Test (GMAT) scores. Both tests are computer-adaptive tests that are available year-round at test centers throughout the world. Applicants most likely to be admitted are those with strong GRE scores (40th percentile or better on the verbal and quantitative sections). Master's applicants can substitute comparable GMAT scores for the GRE. Applicants may want to consider re-taking the GRE if their scores are older than 5 years as their scores are no longer valid. Learn more about the GRE or GMAT.
Do I need to have work experience to be considered?
Applicants for admission to the full-time HRIR master's program do not need to have previous work experience, although it is encouraged. Nearly all part-time students have full-time careers.
How long does it take for the admissions committee to come to a decision?
Once all admissions documents have been received, decisions for full-time students are typically made within 4 weeks. For part-time students, decisions are typically made within 6–8 weeks. During the busiest seasons, decisions may take longer.
How long does it take to complete the MA-HRIR program?
The HRIR master's degree requires students to complete 48 credits to graduate. Most full-time master's students spend 2 years (4 semesters) earning the 48 credits.
What does the program cost?
For residents of Minnesota, Wisconsin, North Dakota, South Dakota, and Manitoba, full-time student tuition is approximately $18,000 per year. Non-resident tuition is approximately $29,548 per year. There is an additional student services fee (approximately $500/semester) and a Carlson School technology fee ($616/semester).
Are graduate assistantships and fellowships available?
Graduate assistantships and fellowships are awarded to highly-qualified students, typically for one academic year. There is no separate application, but interested students must submit a complete admissions application by February 1. Assistantships are usually for quarter time and require 10 hours of work per week during the school year. Participants help with faculty research projects and with CHRLS Reference Room services.
What kind of financial aid is available?

Loans and work-study opportunities are available for U.S. citizens and permanent residents.

Most full-time HRIR graduate students find summer internships with companies in the Twin Cities and across the nation. Students can also gain part-time experience during the school year. Although the University does not provide credit for internships, the experience provides many students with opportunities to network, get more work experience, and potentially find a permanent job.

Further information on financial aid is available at Financial Aid – One Stop

What courses will I be taking?
The MA-HRIR program does not require a thesis. The degree program requires 38 credits in human resources, 8 credits in related fields, and the capstone course. A foreign language is not required. Most students take 12 credits per semester. The first half of the program consists of 4-credit (14-week) courses in each of the 6 areas of HRIR. The second half includes 14 credits of HRIR electives, 8 credits of related field courses, plus a final class on strategy, execution, and ethics. For detailed information go to Requirements.
When are classes held for full-time students?
During the first year of study, students attend classes during the day. During the second year, students typically hold an internship during the day, allowing them to attend late afternoon and early evening courses.
When are classes held for part-time students?
Afternoon and evening classes are available. Depending on their individual schedule, each part-time student will create a schedule of classes to meet their degree requirements.
Can I work and still enroll in the full-time masters program?
In order to fully concentrate on the program, it is recommended that full-time students do not hold outside employment, other than any HR-related internships or assistantships they may hold.
If I’m accepted, how do I find housing?
To start your housing search, contact the University's Department of Housing and Residential Life in Comstock Hall East at 612-624-2994 or email the Housing and Residential Life program. The HRIR program office also helps students find roommates. Rent for off-campus housing varies. In general, rooming houses and shared housing are most affordable. Apartments, duplexes, and houses charge higher rents depending on location and other factors. Most students live in the Stadium Village, Dinkytown, Como Corridor, or Uptown areas. Stadium Village and Dinkytown are adjacent to the University's East Bank campus. The Como Corridor is northeast of the East Bank and has excellent bus service to campus. The Uptown neighborhood is centered at Lake Street and Hennepin Avenue, 4 miles southwest of campus, and features a wide range of apartments, restaurants, coffee shops, stores, and nightlife.
Where is the Carlson School located? Is there transportation available?

The Carlson School of Management is located in Minneapolis on the West Bank campus of the University of Minnesota. For transportation information, click on these links:

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I’d like to visit the Center for Human Resources and Labor Studies. Can I take a tour?

Although the Center for Human Resources and Labor Studies does not schedule regular tours, we're happy to arrange individual visits and encourage you to see everything we offer. Many prospective students have found it valuable to tour our facilities and speak with faculty, current students, and alumni. If you're interested, please contact our admissions coordinator at:
phone: 612-624-5704; fax: 612-624-8360; or email: hrirgrad@umn.edu.

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