Admission Requirements

If you are an ambitious individual with a passion for a professional career in finance, we are looking for you. The Fisher SMF program is a generalist graduate terminal degree in Finance with an applied orientation. SMF is suitable for individuals with prior studies in finance or business as well as those who seek a career change, but have had prior studies in engineering, computer science, economics, mathematics, or a related field or have had relevant prior work experience in business or finance. The program aims at providing strong training for entry-level or more experienced analyst positions across multiple areas of finance.

If you are interested in a more general graduate management education, a program such as Fisher’s MBA may be more appropriate for you.

Application checklist

Once your complete application is received, it is scheduled for review by the admissions committee. We will be in touch with you within six to eight weeks to let you know our decision. International applications may take more time to complete the application review process.  International students are encouraged to complete their applications as early as possible to ensure prompt financial review if they are recommended for admission.

In all cases, the admissions committee will only review files that are complete. Please see below below for a listing of items that constitutes a complete application.

A complete application includes
  • A completed SMF application online form
  • Application processing fee - payable via credit card upon online application submission
  • At least two (2) references that can speak to your potential to be successful in the program. (You may submit an optional third letter of reference if you believe this will help strengthen your application.) If you are an enrolled undergraduate student at time of application, we recommend your letters of reference be from academic sources. You will have the opportunity to ask your references to submit either electronic or paper letters of reference on your behalf when you submit your online application.
  • Resume--The Fisher SMF program admissions committee views work experience as desirable but not necessary. Undergraduate academic record, reference letters, evidence of leadership experience and official test scores (GMAT and TOEFL, if applicable) play a more significant role in a complete application evaluation. You will have the opportunity to upload your resume as an attachment during the online application submission process.
  • Essays. All applicants are required to complete 2 essays. If your undergraduate degree was in something other than finance, you must submit an essay on how your educational background prepared you for the Fisher SMF program. You will submit your essays electronically as part of your online application submission. 
    • Essay 1: Why do you wish to earn a SMF degree?  Why do you wish to earn an SMF from The Fisher College of Business? How will the Fisher SMF  program assist you in achieving your immediate career goals?
    • Essay 2: What is the most difficult situation you have had to deal with and what did you learn from the experience?
    • Video Essay (optional): This video essay gives you a chance to speak directly to the admissions committee since each applicant is not guaranteed an in-person interview. Share something interesting about yourself that we would not otherwise learn from your application.

  • Transcripts: You are required to submit transcripts from each undergraduate and graduate institution attended. Coursework from one institution reported as transfer credit on another school's transcript does not meet Ohio State's definition of a transcript. Separate transcripts must be submitted if you received any transfer credit from another university(ies). Ohio State will not accept web reports, advising reports, self-reported scores, or transfer credit on another school’s transcript in lieu of official transcripts.
    • Transcripts should include all work previously completed and work currently in progress. If you have taken courses at The Ohio State University, (or are), you do not need to submit transcripts for those grades as the Admissions Office will obtain your Ohio State grades directly from the University Registrar’s Office.
      Please note

      The SMF Admissions Committee will review scanned copies of official transcripts uploaded in your application for evaluation purposes. If you are admitted to Fisher, you will be required to submit final official transcripts.

    • You have two choices to submit transcripts as a part of the application:
      • Option 1: Use the UPLOAD DOCUMENT button in the ACADEMIC INFORMATION section within the online application to upload copies (front and back) of official transcripts from ALL institutions attended where college credit was earned – even if you earned any college credits while in high school. International credentials should include certified educational records and degree certificates or diplomas in the original language with English translations.
      • Option 2: Send final official hardcopies of transcript/record of all courses completed for institutions attended to the Graduate Admissions Office.
      • Please note: This method may cause your application review to be delayed. If choosing this method, please send your transcripts as early as possible.
    • In cases where examination results or grades are not released, please contact the Graduate Admissions Office at
    • The Ohio State University does not recognize a three-year bachelor’s degree to be comparable to the American bachelor’s degree. One of the basic requirements for admission to Fisher is the completion of a four year American bachelor’s degree or its equivalent prior to matriculation.
  • Standardized Test Scores - GMAT or GRE and (if applicable) TOEFL or IELTS
    • International applicants must take the TOEFL or IELTS. Waivers of this requirement are rarely granted. Please contact the Graduate School's Admissions Office (614.292.9444 or for specific information.
    • The GMAT, GRE and TOEFL/IELTS can be taken at a number of locations. Please contact the following companies directly for further information

We recommend scoring at least 100 on the ibTOEFL with 24 or higher on the speaking portion of the ibTOEFL to be minimally competitive.

Do not send extra copies of materials to us via surface mail that you have already provided to us in your online application. 

 Chinese Applicants

Fanping allows any applicant from China to create a student profile before you apply to our university.  This profile provides us with information about you that can differentiate you from your peers. This website is not a part of our official application process; however, we can use this student profile to evaluate you as a potential applicant to our university.  Your student profile can be created and submitted at any time of the year for our review.