Frequently Asked Questions

Dear prospective student:

At the Faculty of Pharmacy and Pharmaceutical Sciences, we are committed to ensuring you have information available to you in a variety of formats. Please have a look at our FAQ's. We have compiled these based on the questions we receive. We hope you find them helpful and informative. However, if you find there is a question not addressed on your appropriate admissions topic, email us at

Thank you for considering the University of Alberta's Faculty of Pharmacy and Pharmaceutical Sciences for your studies.

How much does the program cost?

An MBA usually costs $25,500. Our cost will be approximately $1,300 per course.

NOTE: All courses enrolled in during the year a student is registered in the MBA program will be assessed this amount of tuition.

How many students are admitted?
Each class has 80 students, of which 40 per cent are international students. The program may admit up to six pharmacy students in any given year.
How long is the program?
The combined program includes 12 months (Fall / Winter / Spring / Summer), during which 11 core courses and three electives are completed. This is five courses less than the usual MBA program. There is an orientation in August, and the program starts with a Leadership component.
When can I start the MBA portion of the combined degree?
Students enter the program after their third-year of the PharmD program and become graduate students for a year. Students then return to their pharmacy program pathway to complete their fourth year, and after that graduate with both degrees at the same time.
What are the admission requirements?
If you already present a degree, admission can be based on that. If not, the admission criteria includes a resume, with or without work experience. A statement of intent is also evaluated, and admission is based on a good fit, not just a good GPA. Reference letters are also required.
Do I need to write the GMAT?
Yes. The GMAT includes questions that are quantitative and verbal.
Is a pre-assessment an option?
Yes. Please email Chris Lynch, Director, Recruitment and Admissions, MBA Program at for more information.
When do I have to apply?
Please refer to the School of Business website for applications deadlines.
When do I find out if I am admitted?
The application is reviewed upon completion. An interview is conducted (approximately 30 minutes in length), and the decision is usually made 24-48 hours after the interview.
Is funding available?
Every student receives funding one way or another.
How many health care professionals are in each class?
On average, five out of the 80 students are health care professionals.
How are courses graded?
This is a graduate program, so a passing grade is a C+. Students are carefully selected to succeed in the program, so grades are only curved if they have to be.
What are the consequences for a student in the combined program if the MBA portion is failed?
It is not common to see a student fail in the MBA program. If a student does fail a course, they find a way to make it up. If a student fails two courses, then they fail the program.
For admission purposes, if an applicant does not present a degree, what other criteria is looked at for academics?
The last 60 units of course weight are looked at, and the competitive GPA is 3.0 or higher.
How does the MBA portion fit into the BSc in Pharmacy program?
Students apply during third-year. Applications can be submitted as early as October, and the sooner the application is received, the sooner a decision is made. It is not possible to take the year in the MBA program after the fourth-year in Pharmacy is completed.
Do I need a business background to apply?
No. Students are admitted with a variety of experience & educational backgrounds. In the MBA program, they learn about accounting, statistics, marketing and human resources together.
Is the coursework project-based?
It varies from course to course.