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Darla Moore School of Business

Frequently Asked Questions

The Master of Human Resources program is a 16-month program that offers a strategic business background along with the human resources emphasis. Studies include a summer internship and work with our HR Advisory Board. Through the program, students will receive a personalized educational experience with a rigorous curriculum based on every human resource function.

There is no work experience requirement for the MHR program. However, students with work experience tend to be more competitive during the internship and job search process.

The program is completed in 16 months. Students begin each fall term in August and graduate the following December.

The MHR program consists of 45 total credit hours. Nine courses (27 credit hours) are HR core classes, four courses (12 credit hours) are business electives, and six credit hours are for the HR internship.

No, a business degree or background is not required. We have students who enter the program from a variety of majors.

No, there are no required prerequisite courses for the program.

  • A Moore School graduate school application.

  • A current resume (uploaded as part of the online application).

  • GMAT or GRE scores.

  • TOEFL or IELTS exam scores (required of international students who have not earned a degree in the United States).

  • Official transcripts of all prior college work. If all of an applicant's undergraduate coursework was completed in the USC system (Aiken, Columbia or Upstate), a transcript is not required.

  • Two letters of recommendation (Academic or professional are acceptable).

  • The current application fee paid.

  • Competitive candidates are also asked for an admissions interview.

We accept applications for the following fall term beginning in September and continue to do so through the spring and into the summer. However, we begin our financial award process in the fall, so it is recommended that an application be completed and submitted as soon as possible in order to be considered in the earlier rounds of those award decisions. Each year deadlines are established and applicants will be reviewed for admission and considered for awards at each deadline.

Last year, our average verbal and quantitative GRE and GMAT scores were an overall 309 and 570, respectively.

Generally, we ask for a minimum undergraduate GPA of 3.0. Our average GPA is usually around a 3.5.

(Applicable only to international students without a four-year undergraduate or graduate degree earned at an educational institution in the United States.) International students must have a minimum TOEFL score of 105 on the IBT version. If the IELTS is taken in lieu of the TOEFL exam, a minimum score of 7.5 is required on the exam. Exam scores must be no more than two years old.

Get more information about MHR tuition and fees. Through a program called the Academic Common Market, students who claim residency in the following states qualify for in-state tuition rates:

  • Arkansas
  • Georgia
  • Kentucky
  • Louisiana
  • Virginia

Yes. Each student who is admitted to the program is automatically considered for financial merit-based awards. These merit-based awards are competitive within the admitted class and we consider test scores, GPA, background, and interviews when determining them. The number of students who receive awards and the amounts of the awards vary greatly. Get more information.

There are assistantships available to students that can be awarded, these are committee decided. You may also apply for work grants in August. While a few of these are teaching assistantships, many are assisting the faculty and staff in various areas or current research projects. The assistantships and work grants work similar to a job and can pay $1,250 to $2,500 per semester. Many of our students either work on campus in this fashion or off campus in a part-time job.

Yes. Currently graduate students may borrow from several student loan programs. These programs are constantly changing. For specific program requirements and application materials, contact the Office of Student Financial Aid and Scholarships at 803-777-8134 or

International students generally do not qualify for U.S.-based student loans.

Yes. The Darla Moore School of Business and the MHR program are accredited by AACSB International — the Association to Advance Collegiate Schools of Business.

The MHR program was designed as a full-time, in-residence program here in Columbia. The program follows a specific order, so it is not currently offered with a part-time option. All of the required courses are typically offered on the Columbia campus between 8 a.m. and 5:30 p.m. Monday through Friday. The program is not currently offered online, as distance education, or at any of the USC regional campuses.

Past placement of MHR students has been excellent. Job placement rates for international students vary based on the student's background and academic profile. Those students who have attended and graduated from a four-year institution in the United States, in combination with the MHR degree at the Moore School, have historically had a better chance for domestic job placement. Due to immigration laws and market conditions, those students who have completed an undergraduate degree outside of the United States in combination with a MHR degree at the Moore School have encountered greater challenges with domestic hiring.

There are many different ways to find out more about the program. 

  • Schedule a campus visit.

  • Meet a recruiter on the road or at a fair.

  • Attend a Virtual Informational Session.

  • Contact a recruiter directly.

  • Contact an MHR student ambassador.

Yes. The MHR program requires that all students complete a six-credit-hour internship (typically 12 weeks long) in the summer between their spring semester and final fall semester. The internship is considered a practicum, so the students also have required coursework to complete along with the work requirement.

Ultimately, the responsibility for obtaining an internship is the student's. However, the Office of Career Management works directly with students to help facilitate the search. OCM helps with weekly meetings, resume building, networking, career fairs and employee relations.

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