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Department of Hospitality Management

Admissions Criteria for On-Campus Graduate Programs in the Department of Hospitality Management

Graduate faculty members in the department have carefully considered factors that predict success in graduate study and have set the following guidelines for admission to the graduate program. These criteria comprise the guidelines used in assessing an applicant's materials. Each person's application is considered as a total package and on its own merits. The applicant not meeting all of the criteria may be denied admission or recommended for probationary or provisional admission as defined below. The number of new students admitted is also influenced by the number of students already in the program and the advising load of each graduate faculty member.

Probationary admission: For those applicants whose grades do not meet the standard, probationary admission may be granted, provided there is other evidence that the applicant has the ability to do satisfactory graduate work. Evidence might include an excellent record of postgraduate work at another institution or high scores on the Graduate Record Examination or the Graduate Management Aptitude Test.

Provisional admission: Students may be admitted provisionally if there are undergraduate deficiencies that must be removed or work experience requirements that must be met.

Students admitted provisionally or on probation will be advised of other conditions to be met to attain full standing. Full standing is attained automatically upon completion of at least 9 hours of coursework for graduate credit with a grade of B or better, and upon the removal of any deficiency that was specified at the time of the admission. Students admitted on probation may be denied continued enrollment if they do not achieve full standing within the specified time period.

Academic Course Requirements

Individuals applying for admission to graduate study must show evidence of completion of the following prerequisite courses:

  • accounting or finance
  • management concepts
  • marketing
  • foodservice management, event and/or lodging management

If these prerequisites are not met, the student may be admitted provisionally with the expectation that these deficiencies will be removed within the first two semesters at K-State. Because these are considered prerequisites, these courses may not be taken for graduate credit. Documentation of completion of these prerequisites must be on file before a student may file a program of study.

Grade Point Average Requirements

Admission to the Master of Science program requires a bachelor's degree from an accredited institution. Individuals applying for the should have a 3.0 grade point average (on a 4.0 scale) of the undergraduate degree program. Individuals applying for the Doctor of Philosophy program should have a 3.5 grade point average or higher in their master's degree program.

Standardized Tests

The department requires submission of scores from either the Graduate Records Examination (GRE) or the Graduate Management Aptitude Test (GMAT).

You may submit a photocopy of your GMAT or GRE score report to expedite your application process. However, an official score report must be received directly from the testing agency to finalize any offer of admission.

Test of English as a Foreign Language OR International English Language Testing System

The Graduate School requires each international applicant whose native language is not English to demonstrate competence in the English language by achieving a satisfactory score (defined below) on

  • the Test of English as a Foreign Language (TOEFL),
  • the International English Language Testing System (IELTS), and
  • Pearson Test of English.

An official report of the scores must be sent to Kansas State University. The TOEFL, IELTS, or PTE is required to ensure that the student's progress toward a degree is not jeopardized by language barriers. The TOEFL (K-State TOEFL school code 6334) is offered several times a year throughout the world by the Educational Testing Service, Princeton, New Jersey. International applicants are advised to take the TOEFL as early as possible to avoid delays in the processing of their applications for admission. Additional information can be found on the Graduate School website. 

An applicant who has received a degree in the last two years from a United States college or university is exempt from this requirement. However, individual programs may require demonstration of English language proficiency.

Those who do not meet the minimum proficiency standard will be required to complete specified courses offered by the English Language Program (ELP) at K-State. Intensive English training for students who have TOEFL scores below 550/213/79 is also available through the ELP. For information and application to this program write to Director, English Language Program, 205 Fairchild Hall, Kansas State University, Manhattan, Kansas 66506-1106; email: elp@k-state.edu

Industry-Related Work Experience

The Department of Hospitality Management graduate faculty members believe that industry-related work experience greatly enhances a student's graduate study. Students who have worked in some facet of the hospitality industry can more fully participate in class discussions. Students with work experience are often more confident in their selection of their topic for research if they have dealt with industry challenges.

Master's Degree Work Experience Requirement

Industry experience in some aspect of hospitality management is preferred. If the student has no industry-related work experience, 1000 hours of such experience must be completed during the degree program

The visa status of international students may prohibit them from being employed off-campus unless such work experience is required by the degree program. In this situation, international students would enroll in HM 785 Field Experience and would find appropriate work experience that would be pre-approved by the major professor. Written and verbal reports of the work experience must be submitted to the major professor, who will then notify the graduate school that the prerequisite work experience requirement has been met.

Doctoral Degree Work Experience Requirement

Applicants for the doctoral program should provide documentation of a minimum of two years of industry-related work experience, preferably at a supervisory level. Questions as to whether an applicant's previous work experience meets admission criteria should be directed to Dr. Junehee Kwon, graduate program director.