Texas MPA Admissions Blog

Insider Information for Prospective Students

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MPA Application: GMAT

GMAT

UT-Austin code for the GMAT: 396-44-94

Tips:

  1. All MPA applicants are required to submit GMAT scores. No waiver requests are accepted.
  2. We do not accept the GRE in place of the GMAT.
  3. If feasible, plan to take the GMAT exam no later than mid fall because:
  • You will be required to wait 16 calendar days if you wish to retake the exam.*
  • Your scores will arrive at UT-Austin and become an official part of your application approximately 3 to 4 weeks after the official score report is requested.
  • All application materials, including the official test scores, must be received before the admissions committee will review your file for an admissions decision.

*If you retake the GMAT, the score report with the highest total score will be considered (scores are not averaged). If your application is complete and you are retaking the GMAT, please notify me of your new test date. The admissions committee will hold off on a decision until we receive the new test results.

 Frequently Asked Questions:

Do I have to take the GMAT before I submit my application?

No. You can leave the GMAT section blank in the application if you haven’t taken the exam yet. Be sure to designate UT-Austin as a score recipient after you take the exam.

What is the minimum GMAT score the MPA program will consider?

The MPA program does not impose minimum scores and considers the GMAT in the context of a holistic review of all admissions criteria. That said, the GMAT is an important component of the MPA application. You may find it helpful to review our current student MPA class profile as well as the tips to make your application stand out.

Can I use test scores that are about to expire? 

GMAT scores are valid for five years from the test date. As long as the official score report is submitted to UT-Austin before the expiration of the exam, we can use the score for admission purposes. For example, if you took the exam in November 2011 and submit the scores before November 2016, we can use the scores for the entire fall 2017 application cycle. If you do not submit the scores by the exam expiration date, you would need to retake the exam.

MPA Application: Essay

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Writing an admissions essay can seem like a daunting task…

What should I write? 

How should I write it? 

How long should the essay be?

Here are some tips to consider before writing your MPA application essay:

  • First and foremost, be yourself. The purpose of the essay is to provide the admissions committee with a better understanding of what makes you unique. It gives you an opportunity to stand out from the sea of applicants. Provide a thoughtful portrayal of why you are interested in the Texas MPA and how our program will assist you in reaching your goals. Don’t write what you think the admissions committee wants to hear! We would like to know about your unique aspirations and achievements and will not judge what you aim to do with your career.
  • Develop your ideas, but be concise. Although you should focus more on content than length, the average essay is approximately two pages long. As a result, it is important to stay concise and avoid repeating information that is readily available in other parts of the application. Rather than simply listing your experiences, let us know how these experiences helped you to grow personally or professionally. We want to get to know you from a perspective that cannot be achieved by reviewing transcripts, test scores and resumes.
  • Mind your writing technique. The essay is a reflection of your written communication skills. Avoid being too wordy, stay focused and organized, and be sure to proofread!
  • Clarify. You can use the essay as an opportunity to explain weaknesses in your record. If you do, be sure to explain them adequately and address your attempts to improve.

Submitting the Essay:

Approximately 1-2 business days after submitting your application, you will receive an email message from GIAC that will direct you to an online application status check. You will be able to upload a .PDF of your essay under the “Statement of Purpose” section.

MPA Application FAQs

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1. I do not have an accounting background and need to start the MPA program in the summer. However, I cannot find a summer 2017 MPA application in ApplyTexas. What should I do?

You should complete a fall application, even if you are required to start in the summer. If you are accepted to the MPA program and decide to attend, we will backdate your admission to the summer so that you can enroll in summer courses.

2. Can I submit the application even if I haven’t taken the GMAT yet?

Yes, you can skip the GMAT section on the application. After you take the test, have the official  score report sent to UT-Austin, and the scores will be matched to your application.

3. What other application materials do I need to provide, and how do I submit them?

A comprehensive checklist and instructions are available in the MPA admissions packet. Before preparing your application materials, I recommend reviewing the tips to make your application stand out, the MPA class profile, and admissions FAQs.

4. I am a U.S. applicant. Should I apply by the early deadline?

As a general rule, U.S. applicants benefit by submitting their application materials as early as possible in the admissions cycle. However, if you need additional time to prepare your application (to prepare for the GMAT, for example), it is to your advantage to take your time and present the strongest application possible. Keep in mind that we use a rolling admissions process for U.S. applications in which we review applications in the order of completion. Therefore, if you do not complete your application by the early December 1 deadline, you do not need to wait for another “round” on March 1… apply as soon as you are able!

5. I do not have U.S. permanent residency or citizenship status, but I will receive my undergraduate (or graduate) degree in the U.S. Can I apply as a U.S. applicant? Do I need to submit TOEFL or IELTS test scores?

Only U.S. citizens and U.S. permanent residents are eligible to apply as U.S. applicants. All international MPA applicants, except those from English-only speaking countries, must submit either an Internet-based TOEFL or IELTS official score report. Studying an undergraduate or graduate degree in an English-only speaking country will not waive the TOEFL/IELTS score requirement. However, if applicable, you may request that a copy of your expired Internet-based TOEFL or IELTS score report be used for your MPA application if the scores meet or exceed our preferred minimum requirements.  Please refer to the MPA admissions packet for additional information.

Have an additional question? Post it here!

Attend a Texas MPA Info Session

info-session

Planning to be in the Austin area soon?

I encourage you to attend one of our upcoming information sessions to learn about the admissions process, curriculum, and career opportunities.

Thursday, September 29, 2016, 5:00 p.m.
The University of Texas at Austin
Legacy Events Room (CBA 3.202)
Register Now

Thursday, October 20, 2016, 5:00 p.m.
The University of Texas at Austin
Legacy Events Room (CBA 3.202)
Register Now

Not in town on those days? You also have the option to arrange a personalized visit schedule at any time so that we can introduce you to our program and show you around the business school.

Apply to the Texas MPA!

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The fall 2017 online application is open!

All application materials, including official test scores, must be received before an application will be reviewed for a decision.

Application Deadlines:

U.S. applicants (early deadline): December 1, 2016

International applicants: January 5, 2017

U.S. applicants (final deadline): March 1, 2017

 U.S. Applications: The admissions committee reviews completed U.S. applications on a rolling basis starting in December.

International Applications: All international applications are reviewed after the January 5 application deadline.

 Questions?

I encourage you to post general admissions questions to this blog. Any specific questions that are unique to your situation should be sent to me via e-mail.

We look forward to receiving your applications!

Accounting Department No. 1 Seventh Year Running

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Originally published by Matt Turner in McCombs Today:

For the seventh consecutive year, the McCombs School of Business took a clean sweep in accounting, earning the No. 1 spots for its undergraduate, master’s, and Ph.D. programs in the Public Accounting Report (PAR) Annual Professors Survey.

This marks the 12th time in 15 years that McCombs took first place across all three of the PAR categories.

“Over the years, McCombs’ consistently high PAR rankings are recognition of our very talented faculty, staff, and students,” says Robert Freeman, chairman of the Accounting Department. “It’s great to work with such dedicated people.”

Read more…

New MPA Director Brings Passion for Teaching to Top Accounting Program

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Originally published by Jeremy Simon in McCombs Today:

Stephen Smith brings both enthusiasm and experience as the new senior director of the Master in Professional Accounting program at the McCombs School of Business, a role he assumed on June 1.

“I can’t even explain my excitement about the opportunity to be helping to direct the best program — literally — in the world,” Smith says.

As the MPA’s senior director, Smith will lead a program ranked No. 1 by the Public Accounting Report and U.S. News & World Report. Smith lays out a straightforward formula for the program’s success: “We are very fortunate to get the best students, and when you mix that with our tremendous faculty, it works. Students recognize it, faculty recognize it, and employers recognize it. It’s just a winning combination,” Smith says. “I don’t think it’s any more complicated — good ingredients in, great product out.”

Smith has undergraduate and graduate degrees in accounting, industry experience, and has been on the faculty at the McCombs School’s top-ranked Accounting Department since 2007. In that time he’s educated a range of students, including undergraduates, MBAs, Texas Executive MBAs, Executive Education students, and those studying abroad.

Read more…

Fall 2017 MPA Applicants: Prepare Early!

Hand turning the word Unprepared into Prepared with red marker isolated on white.

 Applying to the Texas MPA program for fall 2017? Start preparing now!

  • Review our admissions website thoroughly. If there are any updates to the application process, we will be publish them on this website before the application opens in early September 2016.
  • Enroll in courses this summer or fall if you have not completed our pre-enrollment requirements.
  • Take the GMAT and TOEFL (if applicable) early so that we receive your test scores before the application deadline.
  • Check this admissions blog regularly. I will begin posting tips on applying, updates on the admissions process, and highlights of our program after the application opens…You don’t want to miss it!

Welcome, MPA Class of 2017!

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New Texas MPA students,

In the not-to-distant future, you will be stepping foot on The University of Texas at Austin campus and spending plenty of time in the McCombs School of Business. The MPA Program Office staff and accounting faculty will be assisting you, step by step, to prepare you for your classes and the busy, yet exciting, employment recruiting season. In the meantime, we recommend that you…

  • Learn about UT’s history and traditions.
  • Take a virtual tour of The University of Texas at Austin’s campus.
  • Review the website for new students.
  • Become familiar with student life at UT and in the McCombs School of Business. Over the years, our student bloggers have published a McCombs mini tour, information about the MPA Lounge and other favorite places to study, and the perks to being in Austin and attending a large, prestigious research university.

A Mini Tour of the McCombs School of Business

MPA Educated Eats is More than Just a Sandwich!

First Impressions of Being a TA

Looking Back, Looking Forward

MPAs Work Hard, Play Hard

MPAC in the Community

A Weekend in Austin

Making Austin Memories

Live Music Capital of the World

Next Stop…More Barbecue

Run, Austin! (2.0)

I Met a Famous Author Thanks to UT!

We look forward to seeing you soon!

Texas MPA Alumni Recognized for Top CPA Exam Performance

AICPA

The American Institute of CPAs announced the winners of the 2015 Elijah Watt Sells Award. The award is given to CPA candidates who have obtained a cumulative average score above 95.50 across all four sections of the Uniform CPA Examination, passed all four sections of the Examination on their first attempt and completed testing in 2015. A total of 93,742 individuals sat for the Examination in 2015, with 75 candidates meeting the criteria to receive the Elijah Watt Sells Award. Read more…

Four recipients were from the Texas MPA program:

  • Emily Baker
  • Nathan  Evenson
  • Paloma Gante
  • Yu-Ting Huang

Congratulations!!

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