Specialized Master in Finance
Applying and Deadlines


Review the application requirements and deadlines below and then start your application to Fisher's Specialized Master in Finance (SMF) program. 

View all deadlines below   Start your online application

What We Are Looking For

Our admissions team frequently receives questions about what they are looking for in a prospective Specialized Master of Finance student. You'll find the answer to some of the more common questions below:

  • Undergrad

    Do I need to have an undergraduate degree in business to apply to your program?

    No, all majors are welcome and encouraged to apply. A big focus of the review process is evidence of quantitative skills/aptitude via coursework or GMAT/GRE scores. The majority of successful non-business students come from a variety of backgrounds, including - but not limited to - economics, psychology, engineering, communications, and political science.

  • Experience

    Do I need to have work experience to apply to your program?

    You are not required to have post undergraduate degree work experience for successful application to this program. Most (~75%) students admitted into the program have less than one year of work experience.

  • Prerequisites

    Are there prerequisite courses that I need to apply to your program?

    No, there are no prerequisite courses required to apply to the SMF program.

    For more information on our incoming class, we encourage you to review our class profile.

Application Requirements

Applicants for the SMF degree program must have completed (or will complete prior to enrollment) a baccalaureate degree from an accredited college or university. Our application process varies slightly for domestic and international applicants but in general requires similar elements including:

SMF Application Workshop Webinar


  • Open/Close Academic Transcripts

    One of the requirements for admission to Fisher is the completion of a four-year bachelor’s degree or its equivalent prior to enrollment if admitted. The Ohio State University generally does not recognize a three-year bachelor’s degree to be equivalent to a four-year bachelor’s degree. Review this link to determine if you meet the degree requirements for The Ohio State University. Contact the Office of Graduate and Professional Admissions directly for additional guidance.

    You must provide official transcripts from each undergraduate (and graduate, if applicable) institution where you earned academic credit. Each transcript should include all coursework previously completed, as well as coursework currently in progress. You must provide official transcripts for each institution if credits were earned abroad or were transferred between universities. For example, if one (or more) courses were completed abroad or at a different institution, you would submit separate official transcripts from each institution where credit was earned. (Exception: Do not submit transcripts from Ohio State if you have already graduated from or will graduate from The Ohio State University).

    In cases where examination results or grades are not issued, contact the Office of Graduate and Professional Admissions for additional guidance.


    The Fisher Admissions Committee will review scanned copies of official transcripts uploaded in your application for evaluation purposes. Upload only scanned images of official paper transcripts (both front and back side) issued to you by your institution's registrar. Otherwise, order a verified electronic version of an official transcript from the issuing institution to be sent directly to GPADOCS@osu.edu. If your institution does not provide verified electronic transcripts, you may order them directly from the issuing institution. Transcripts mailed to Ohio State must be sent to the Office of Graduate and Professional Admissions.

    Failure to follow these directions completely will result in a delay of your application being processed and reviewed by the admissions committee.

    You can watch our webinar covering the most common mistakes that applicants make when providing academic transcripts as part of their graduate program application. The Director of Admissions and Recruiting will also point out critical requirements for your transcript(s) to make for a seamless application process. 

    Watch the Transcript Requirement webinar


    • International transcript documents should include official educational records listing all courses and grades, the grading system used, and graduation certificates or diplomas (if applicable).
    • All documents should be submitted in their original language, along with English language translations that follow the format of the original documents. English translations must be certified by the issuing institution or a certified translator. Student-made translations are not accepted.
    • If your university retains the only official copy of your transcript, a duplicate copy certified by an officer of the university is acceptable.
  • Open/Close Test Scores


    All applicants* are required to take the Graduate Management Admission Test (GMAT) or Graduate Record Exam (GRE). There is NO minimum GMAT or GRE score required to apply to the Fisher SMF program. GMAT and GRE scores are valid for five years from the date the test was taken. For more information, we recommend reviewing the most recent class profile for information on the most recently admitted class.


    Ohio State's Graduate School requires you to demonstrate English proficiency by taking the TOEFL or the IELTS. Due to the COVID-19 pandemic,  Ohio State will also accept the Duolingo English Test in addition to the TOEFL or IELTS. Click here for additional information on English proficiency requirements, exemptions, and minimum scores.


    Fisher undergraduate candidates who meet both criteria below may choose to apply for admission to the SMF program without official GMAT or GRE scores:

    • Will earn or has earned an undergraduate degree from Fisher College of Business  at The Ohio State University with a declared major in finance and
    • Has a cumulative GPA of 3.5 or higher at the time of application

    The option to waive the GMAT/GRE will only appear in the application for those that meet both above criteria. Cumulative GPA is subject to verification by the SMF application office.

    Questions? Email us at fisher_smf@fisher.osu.edu.

  • Open/Close Resume

    This is your opportunity to showcase your employment history, extracurricular and/or community activities, language skills, and military record, if applicable.

    Resumes can be longer than one page to account for additional details about your school and work history, accomplishments, awards, community or professional organizations or other information that would be relevant for the Admissions Committee.

  • Open/Close Essay

    You are required to submit an essay when applying to the program. This is an opportunity to present yourself to the admissions committee in a meaningful, in-depth way. We encourage you to invest time in your essay, be genuine, and include examples with the points you make.


    Why do you wish to earn a Specialized Master of Finance degree? Why do you wish to earn an SMF degree from the Fisher College of Business? How will the Fisher SMF program assist you in achieving your immediate career goals?

    Supplemental Essay (Optional):

    Please feel free to provide a statement concerning any information you would like to add to your application that you have not addressed elsewhere.

  • Open/Close Letters of Recommendation (Optional)

    Although optional, letters of recommendation provide the SMF Admissions Committee with further insight into your personality, your character, and your potential for success in the SMF program and beyond. 

    Typically, one of your letters of recommendation should be from a professional context. We encourage you to choose individuals to recommend you who can attest to your scholarship, professional development, leadership potential, and personal character.

    If you're eligible for Ohio State's Graduate Enrichment Fellowship OR University Fellowship, please submit three letters of recommendation to be considered.


    You will have the opportunity to ask your references to submit electronic letters of reference on your behalf through the online application.

  • Open/Close Video Interview

    Each applicant is required to complete an online assessment comprised of recorded video questions. Since live interviews are on a need-basis, the video interview is a way for us to virtually meet you and get a sense of your personality and potential beyond what you've included in your application.

    When you start an application, you’ll receive an email invitation to complete your video interview. While it's recommended to complete the video interview within 2 weeks, the link will not expire. Your application cannot be reviewed until all items are complete, including your Kira video interview. 


    The process is simple - you will be asked a question, given prep time, and a set amount of time to respond. It should only take 20 to 30 minutes to complete and can be done on your own time. We recommend watching our "7 Tips to Ace your Kira Video Interview" webinar to understand how it works and to improve your application.

    7 Tips to Ace your Kira Video Interview


    You will require an internet-connected computer with a functioning webcam,  microphone, and keyboard. The system allows for unlimited practice sessions but once you start the formal interview questions you only get one chance - this allows us to see your candid responses.

    If you have questions about access or want to request a disability-based accommodation, please contact fishergrad@fisher.osu.edu.

  • Open/Close Application Fee

    The nonrefundable application fee is $60 (U.S. Dollars) for United States citizens, permanent residents, or asylees, and $70 (U.S. Dollars) for international students. The fee is paid by credit card at the time that an applicant submits the online application. The application fee should not be sent separately to the Graduate Admissions Office.

Start your online application

Application Deadlines for Autumn 2023

We process applications and make financial aid decisions on a rolling admissions basis, meaning that we review and evaluate complete applications as they are submitted rather than waiting until the deadline(s) to begin the review process. Applicants should receive an admission decision from the SMF program within four weeks of the deadline as long as all application information is received by the stated deadlines below. Applications for the SMF program are accepted for the autumn term only. Autumn 2023 classes begin on August 22, 2023.

Applications are only considered for a specific deadline if you submit your application by the date listed AND complete your checklist in the application portal. We cannot review applications until they are complete. Questions? Email fisher_smf@fisher.osu.edu.

deadlineAU23 Deadlines: Notes:
November 28, 2022 University Fellowship and Graduate Enrichment Fellowship deadline: Fellowship eligible1 applicants need to submit by this deadline to be considered for nomination in the Graduate School competition.
January 13, 2023 Priority consideration for SMF merit-based financial aid/scholarships2
March 17, 2023 International students: Final application deadline for admission consideration.3
May 30, 2023 Domestic students: Final application deadline for admission consideration.3

1 Ohio State Fellowship eligibility: Click here to view the basic eligibility requirements. Watch a quick webinar: University Fellowship | Graduate Enrichment Fellowship.

2 All admitted applicants are automatically considered for financial aid/scholarships. Qualified applications received after this deadline will still be considered as long as funds are available.

3Qualified applications received after the final application deadline(s) are reviewed on a space-available basis. Questions? Email fisher_smf@fisher.osu.edu.


1. MERIT-BASED AID / SCHOLARSHIPS: By applying (and being admitted) early, applicants can ensure they receive priority consideration for merit-based aid/scholarships. The availability of merit-based aid/scholarships may decrease after each deadline.

2. CLASS SIZE: Fisher intentionally limits its incoming SMF class size. Therefore, applying sooner than later is better.

3. INTEREST: Applying early to Ohio State is a good signal that you place a priority on attending our SMF program. A strong interest in enrollment at Ohio State is highly valued by our admissions team.

Contact Us

Whether you are in the beginning stages of your program search or you have already decided that one of Fisher's graduate programs is the right fit for you, we encourage you to connect with us.  

Request More Information

Contact Fisher's Graduate Programs Office directly to schedule on-campus activities such as in-person meetings, class visits and campus tours. We will do our best to accommodate your request in-person or virtually within university guidelines - Safe and Healthy Buckeyes.