Watson/MBA 4+1 program

Designed exclusively for Binghamton University students in the Thomas J. Watson College of Engineering and Applied Science, the Watson/MBA 4+1 program allows students to complete their first year of MBA coursework during their senior year.

The program option allows you to earn an undergraduate degree and an MBA from Binghamton University in only five years, saving you one year of graduate tuition.

Program Highlights:

  • Apply as a junior and begin taking graduate courses during your senior year
  • Increase your marketability and earning potential - the combination of an undergraduate engineering degree and an MBA is highly sought after by recruiters
  • Save time and money on your path to earning a graduate degree
  • No prerequisite coursework required
  • Explore coursework in finance, leadership/consulting, supply chain management, management information systems, marketing or business analytics, or customize your curriculum through numerous elective offerings

Are you an ISE major looking to dive into business analytics? A Systems Science student with an interest in Management Information Systems? Or simply looking to apply your technical skillset to the dynamic world of business? There are several benefits associated with applying your Watson education towards a career path in management.

The program provides a complementary addition to any engineering degree. There is much more to software development than solely technical expertise. The program taught me the importance of forecasting trends, business impact and organizational behavior in the tech industry. As a program manager at Microsoft, I apply my interpersonal, business and technical skills simultaneously each and every day. 

Roseanne Levasseur '15, MBA '16
Program Manager, Microsoft


Note: To accommodate for complications caused by the COVID-19 pandemic, GRE or GMAT scores are accepted, but not required, for 2021 applicants.

How does it work? 

Provided you meet MBA admission requirements, you are permitted to take three MBA classes during your junior and/or senior year: Accounting (MGMT 501), Managerial Economics (MGMT 502) and Finance (MGMT 505). These courses may count towards fulfilling your technical and/or free electives. At the end of your senior year you receive your undergraduate degree and proceed into your fifth year as an official graduate student.

The Watson/MBA 4+1 program requires a two-step admissions process: conditional admission to the program in your junior year, and formal admission to the Graduate School during your senior year. All engineering majors are eligible, with the exception of bioengineering.

Conditional Admission to Watson/MBA 4+1 program

You must apply to the program by the spring of your junior year. If offered conditional admission, you will be able to register for select 'core' MBA courses during your senior year.

When applying, you must submit the following materials to Molly Pianella (mpianella@binghamton.edu) in the School of Management:

  • Copy of GMAT or GRE scores (typically taken during your junior year)
  • Personal statement describing why you are interested in pursuing the MBA
  • Current resume
  • Two letters of recommendations (these can be from employers, professors or instructors)

Generally, Watson/MBA 4+1 program admission requires a minimum GMAT score of 600, along with a 3.0 GPA in order to advance to the MBA program.  

Formal Admission to the Graduate School

During the spring of your senior year (88+ undergraduate credits), you will need to formally apply to the Graduate School. Check with your advisor/department to find out if there are any special deadlines or requirements necessary for accelerated degree program applicants. When applying, choose the "Accelerated Graduate Degree Application for Admission" option through BU Brain .

Learn more about the admissions process to apply for an accelerated degree at the Graduate School

Course Curriculum: Watson/MBA 4+1 program

During your senior year, you are required to complete the following courses: MGMT 501, 502 and 505 (see curriculum and timeline below). These classes will be applied toward fulfilling the technical and/or professional electives necessary to graduate from your undergraduate engineering program. 

Based on the technical components required within our accredited engineering and computer science programs, you will automatically be waived from 12 credit hours of graduate elective coursework, with the possibility of two additional MBA courses: Statistics & Management Information Systems. On completion of your senior year, you will receive your baccalaureate degree, and are officially admitted into the MBA program during your fifth year.

Visit the Watson Advising website, or speak with your academic advisor for any questions regarding your program's curriculum and graduation requirements.


One elective must be an interpersonal skills elective. Learn more about our elective course offerings here.

4th Year (Required MBA Courses)
Courses can be completed during the Fall OR Spring Semester
MGMT 501: Accounting (FALL)
MGMT 502: Economics (SPRING)
MGMT 505: Finance (FALL)
5th Year (Graduate Status)
Fall Semester Spring Semester
MGMT 508: Organizational Behavior MGMT 506: Marketing
MGMT 516: Business Communications MGMT 507: Operations Management
Elective MGMT 540: Strategic Management
Elective Elective
Elective Elective - OPTIONAL

If you have questions about the admissions process or MBA academic advising, contact:

One-Year MBA Option

Watson students may also be eligible for our One-Year MBA program option, which allows students without an undergraduate degree in business to earn an MBA in only one calendar year.

Prerequisite coursework in microeconomics and statistics is required.