Jul 21, 2024  
2024-2025 Graziadio Academic Catalog 
2024-2025 Graziadio Academic Catalog

Fully Employed Master of Business Administration

The program is no longer accepting new students.

The Fully Employed Master of Business Administration (FEMBA) is a 52-unit program designed for individuals who possess some business or managerial experience and are interested in developing their functional competencies and leadership potential. Students gain a solid foundation of current business management concepts including the impacts of globalization, technology and ethics on the future workplace. A significant amount of students’ class assignments will require ongoing integration and application of acquired knowledge and skills by the students to their professional lives.

The program is designed to concentrate on developing fundamental business knowledge in areas such as finance, marketing, accounting, economics, quantitative analysis, law, human behavior, information systems, management and leadership, and strategy for our students. In addition, developing the skills to analyze business situations in an integrated multidisciplinary way and improving written and oral communication skills so that students can persuasively and professionally articulate their thinking. Also, for students to understand team dynamics and gain self-awareness, to enhance their effectiveness as managers and leaders of teams of people, and to incorporate ethical considerations into decision making.

The FEMBA Program follows a trimester-based academic calender, and typical course-load consists of 4-8 units per trimester. For graduate-level students, the completion of 4 or more units per trimester is considered standard academic progress. 

In the first trimester of the Program, FEMBA students participate in a 3-day weekend-long, immersive workshop. It is designed to promote a cohesive learning environment and establish a strong foundation for interpersonal communication, personal ethics and values, and team development. This course is graded on a credit or no credit basis.

FEMBA program learning goals and outcomes state the educational expectations of student achievement for each degree program. These goals are defined by faculty members to clarify how they intend for graduates to be competent and effective as a result of successfully completing the program. 

Students enrolled in a program that is billed per-unit tuition may not enroll in courses that do not meet or exceed the degree completion requirements as outlined in the catalog.

Global Business Requirement

All FEMBA students must complete at least 2 units of global business course work by satisfying one of the following options:

  1. A global content course from any concentration.

  2. A one-week, 2-unit Global Business Intensive course hosted by partner schools abroad, led by a Graziadio School faculty member.

  3. A Going Global with Graziadio (G3) project spanning two PGBS 694 G3: Going Global with Graziadio - Global Business Development Practicum (0-2)  courses that are taken sequentially.

  4. One trimester study abroad at a global partner business school.

  5. An appropriately scoped global business directed instruction project.

Global Business Intensive Courses

Two units of credit may be earned by completing one of the Global Business Intensive (GBI) courses offered at locations such as Asia, Europe, Latin America, the Caribbean, and North America. The short-term intensive courses occur during trimester breaks. At the time of registration for the GBI course, students must have completed a minimum of 8 units at PGBS with a minimum cumulative GPA of 2.70.

Study Abroad Program

Students may spend a trimester abroad as a full-time student at one of the Graziadio School international partner business schools. Upon approval by the appropriate academic discipline(s), 12 units of course work of comparable scope and content may be taken at the international partner school to satisfy elective requirements. Students will enroll at the Graziadio School in the appropriate number of PGBS Study Abroad course units. When the courses are completed at the international partner university, their course designation will be added to the enrollment record so that they will appear on the student’s transcript. These courses will be graded credit or no credit only.

Access to Online Courses

On-ground students who wish to enroll in a FEMBA relevant online course may submit a request for consideration on a space-available basis. Prior to the formal submission of the request, students should consult with their advisor to understand the potential impact of taking the desired online course on their overall program completion plan and timeline. Supporting documentation may be required. Requests are individually reviewed by the Program Office, and approval is not guaranteed. 

Change in Program Modality

Students are generally expected to complete their program coursework in the same modality they had chosen upon program entrance. Under compelling and verifiable circumstances, a student may formally petition for a permanent change in program modality (i.e., from online to on-ground). Petitions should be directed to the Program Office, detailing the nature of the circumstances and providing relevant documentation. 

Transfer of Graduate Credit

Students who have completed equivalent graduate-level courses at other AACSB and regionally accredited institutions may, upon the approval of the Program Committee, transfer up to 12 units into the FEMBA Program. However, certain course requirements for the degree - specifically BSCI 650 Personal and Leadership Development Workshop , BSCI 651 Behavior in Organizations PGBS 670J Integration in Business Operations (1) , and STGY 659 Strategic Management  - may not be satisfied through transfer credit. 

To be considered for a transfer, courses must have been taken within five years prior to the student’s start of enrollment in the FEMBA Program at the Graziadio School. Only courses in which grades of “B” or better were earned will be accepted. Accepted transfer courses appear on the student’s Pepperdine transcript as “credit” only and are not factored into the cumulative grade point average.

Requests for the consideration of transfer coursework must be submitted in writing to the Program Office within the first trimester of enrollment and accompanied by the following:

  • Syllabus and catalog description of the previously taken course as the basis for requesting the waiver
  • Official transcript from the institution at which the course was taken, indicating successful completion
  • Any other information that the FEMBA Program Committee may require to evaluate the equivalency of the previously taken course

Decisions regarding transfer credit requests will be communicated to students in writing by the Fully Employed Program Office.

Fast-Track Fully Employed MBA Option

The Fast-Track degree completion plan within the Fully Employed MBA Program is available for candidates who have earned an undergraduate degree in business from an AACSB accredited program and meet the following additional criteria: (a) minimum grade point average of 3.5 in their undergraduate major (business) related coursework; and (b) minimum of two years of professional work experience. The Fast-Track option allows for the waiver of up to 12 units of MBA core courses, excluding the course associated with the student’s intended concentration. The only exemption to this policy may apply to students who have earned an undergraduate degree in the same discipline as their intended FEMBA concentration (e.g., Accounting, Finance, Marketing, etc.). 

In addition to meeting the criteria above, Fast-Track candidates must have earned grades of “B+” or better in their undergraduate upper-division courses that correspond with the FEMBA core courses to be waived. The upper division undergraduate coursework must have been completed within seven years of their initial term of enrollment in the FEMBA Program. 

Pathways to FEMBA Program

Admission Requirements for the Pathways to FEMBA Program

  1. To be considered eligible for admission to the Pathways program, a student must have an earned grade point average of 3.0 or higher in the Graziadio School’s BSM program in one of two situations:

    • Graduated with a BSM degree from the Graziadio School no more than five years prior to the term of matriculation.

    • Currently admitted to and have completed 40 or more units of the Graziadio School’s BSM program and have no outstanding lower-division course work.

  2. Applicants must have a minimum of three years of work experience.
  3. A minimum grade of “B” is required in each BSM course for which the equivalent FEMBA core course is waived through the Pathways to FEMBA program. Students who have not achieved this minimum “B” grade in the BSM course will be required to complete the equivalent FEMBA core course in addition to the normal course requirements of the Pathways to FEMBA program.
  4. The number of units required for the Pathways to FEMBA program is based on the earned grade point average (GPA) in the Graziadio School BSM program, as follows:
  • 3.4 GPA or greater in the BSM program may qualify for the MBAJ program and waive up to 22 units and the Graduate Management Admission Test (GMAT) (see MBAJ section for further information and application process).
  • 3.30 - 3.39 GPA in the BSM program may waive up to 16 units and the GMAT. A minimum of 36 units to be completed at the MBA level.
  • 3.20 - 3.29 GPA in the BSM program may waive up to 12 units and the GMAT. A minimum of 40 units to be completed at the MBA level.
  • 3.10 - 3.19 GPAin the BSM program may waive up to 8 units and the GMAT. A minimum of 44 units to be completed at the MBA level.
  • 3.00 - 3.09 GPA in the BSM program may waive the GMAT. A minimum of 52 units to be completed at the MBA level.  
  • For GPA’s lower than 3.00, the standard requiements for admission and completion of the FEMBA program apply.

An Application for Admission packet may be obtained from the Program Office. The completed application must be submitted to the Graziadio School Admission Office.

Notification of Admission

The Admission Office will inform the applicant of the status of the application, but it is the applicant’s responsibility to ensure that all required documents are on file by published deadlines for admission. Admission will be confirmed by a letter from the associate dean.

Course Requirements for the Pathways to FEMBA Program

  1. The following courses may not be waived:

Required Courses

The FEMBA program requires 52 units of coursework comprised of 38 units of core and 14 units of elective courses. BSCI 650  and BSCI 651  are to be taken concurrently and it is generally completed in the first trimester. PGBS 670J  is a summative experience, requiring students to integrate and apply knowledge acquired through the core curriculum. To be eligible to enroll in PGBS 670J , the following pre-requisites must be satisfied: ACCT 652 BSCI 650 BSCI 651 DESC 656 FINC 655 , and ECNM 657  or MKTG 658 . The STGY 659  capstone course may only be taken upon successful completion of all core courses. 

Below is a list of the core course requirements for the FEMBA program:


As part of the FEMBA degree requirement, students will complete 14 units of elective coursework. Students need to earn 12 of the 14 units in a selected concentration area. The remaining 2 units of electives may be fulfilled by completing a PGBS elective course. Concentration offerings vary by campus location.

Elective course availability will vary per term and year based on instructor availability, enrollment, and program needs. Although elective courses are not guaranteed to be scheduled on a regular cycle, students will be provided a choice of relevant options from the program’s elective list during course registration.

*The concentration is on pause and not available to new, incoming students.