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Department of Industrial and Manufacturing Systems Engineering
Graduate Program Coordinator

Application Process for Operations Research Master's Degree

1. Review Admission Requirements

To qualify for admission into the operations research master’s degree, students must meet the following requirements:

  • A bachelor's degree in industrial engineering, engineering, mathematics, statistics or business (if the student has emphasized quantitative techniques) with a strong background in applied mathematics including calculus and linear algebra. Students are expected to have an advanced mathematical background, as many of the courses have simple proofs required as part of the course.
  • Undergraduate GPA of 3.0 in the final two years or approximately the last 60 credit hours
  • A calculus-based probability/statistics course (equivalent to K-State's STAT 510
  • An introductory operations research course (equivalent to K-State's IMSE 560 or IMSE 680)*
  • Some knowledge of computer programming (equivalent to K-State's CIS 200 or CIS 209)
  • A score of 750 (old scoring system)/159 (new scoring system) or above on the quantitative portion of the Graduate Record Examination (GRE). GRE scores are not required for students who have completed an undergraduate degree from an ABET-accredited program.

*If an entering student has not taken an introductory operations research course, the student should enroll in IMSE 680 - Quantitative Problem Solving Techniques, to gain this knowledge. This course can count as one of the program's electives and provides a broad overview and many applications of operations research. It covers background information and serves to fulfill all prerequisites for the operations research core courses.

2. Review Application Requirements

Application Deadlines

  • U.S. Applicants
    • Applications are accepted year-round. Applicants should plan to apply no later than two to three months before the start of the semester. The fall semester begins in late August, the spring semester begins in late January and the summer semester begins in late May.
  • International Applicants
    • Fall semester (begins in late August): January 8
    • Spring semester (begins in late January): August 1
    • Summer semester (begins in late May): December 1

Students who would like to get started right away but have missed the deadline may take classes as a nondegree-seeking student. Contact us for assistance.

Application Fee

  • U.S. Applicants: $65
  • International Applicants: $75

Graduate School Application Fee FAQ

3. Prepare to Apply

Please be prepared to upload the following information when completing the online application.

  • Statement of objectives: One to two pages outlining why the applicant wants to pursue a graduate degree, accomplishments/traits that would make the applicant a good addition to our program, and future plans/goals. Most statements are three to four paragraphs in length.
  • Names and emails of three professional and/or academic references who will provide letters of recommendation. Your references will be contacted automatically using the email addresses that you supply, but it is your responsibility to ensure that your letters are submitted before your program’s application deadline.
  • An official GRE exam report submitted directly from ETS (submission codes: K-State-6334; IMSE Dept.-1301). Upload scores or, if unable to upload scores, self-report the most recent test scores and arrange for an official score report to be sent to the K-State Graduate School. GRE scores are not required for students who have completed an undergraduate degree from an ABET-accredited program.
  • Resume/curriculum vitae
  • Unofficial transcripts from each institution attended
    • Failure to list any colleges or universities from which the applicant received a degree or enrolled in graduate coursework may result in dismissal from the university.
    • If transcripts are not in English, the applicant must furnish a translation by an appropriate authority.
    • Applicants will be asked for official transcripts after notification of admission.

Proof of English Proficiency

Students whose primary language is not English must submit proof of English proficiency during the application process by providing any one of the following official minimum test scores:


Minimum Required Score

Writing – 24, Listening – 22, Reading - 22


Scores must be self-reported within the application and official scores must be sent by the testing service to K-State.

Exception: students who have received a degree in the last two years from a U.S. college or university are not required to take any of the above English language proficiency exams.

4. Apply


Tip: select “Distance-Off Campus” and “Master’s” on the Academic Information page. On the Program Selection page, select “Engineering” followed by “Operations Research.”

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Quick Facts

Degree: Master of Science
College: Engineering
Credits: 30
Course delivery: Online
Tuition per credit hour: $863.90

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