Why Study the Master of Science in Strategic Finance?

The Indiana University Southeast Master of Science in Strategic Finance (MSSF) degree program is designed for students interested in continuing their postgraduate education in the field of accounting and financial analysis.

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At Indiana University Southeast, both the MBA and the MSSF are designed primarily for working professionals who seek a high-quality, part-time graduate business academic experience.


The Indiana University Southeast Master of Science in Strategic Finance (MSSF) is a graduate business program designed to advance the careers of financial professionals in the private sector and public accounting. The MSSF develops knowledge, skills, and abilities in cost management, financial management, business analysis and valuation, financial statement analysis, decision modeling and simulation, topics in fraud, and advanced corporate financial strategy. Additional elective courses focus on enhancing the financial professional’s abilities in specific areas, such as investment management, international financial management,venture growth management, project management, and information technology management.Professionals without an undergraduate accounting background may choose accounting elective coursework to qualify for the CPA designation.

Completing Both Graduate Business Degrees

The MBA and MSSF are designed as separate degree programs. Students and alumni interested in completing both degree plans should contact the Director of Graduate Business Programs for more information about the specific requirements to earn both degrees. Completion of both the 2012 MSSF and MBA programs (simultaneously or consecutively) requires a minimum of 54 graduate credit hours.

Tuition Rates

While other institutions have increased their tuition rates dramatically, IU Southeast understands the importance of keeping the cost of an IU education manageable. To that end, we’ve worked to keep tuition costs low and to increase the amount of financial aid available. Plus, residents of Jefferson, Bullitt, Oldham, Meade, Trimble and Shelby Counties in Kentucky pay Indiana in-state tuition rates for all programs.



Applicants should have earned a bachelor's degree. Applications are carefully evaluated based primarily on the following factors: Quality of undergraduate degree program, undergraduate grade point average, Graduate Management Admissions Test (GMAT) score**, and relevant work experience. Meeting minimum expectations for each factor does not guarantee admission. Offers of admission will be based in part on program capacity considerations. Typically, we require a 2.7 minimum undergraduate GPA and a minimum GMAT score of a 470 and a 4.0 Analytical Writing Assessment score.

Waiver of GMAT Requirement:

Applicants who have earned graduate degrees (e.g., law, medicine, engineering, pharmacy, business) from accredited programs may not be required to take the GMAT. Similarly, the GMAT may not be required for those with a bachelor’s degree from an AACSB-accredited business program and an undergraduate GPA of 3.5 or higher. Please contact the Director of Graduate Business Programs for more information.

Fill out the Graduate Business Application for Admission using our Online Application »

Application Deadlines:

Applications are accepted throughout the year. Deadlines for consideration of admission for each semester are outlined below*.

Desired Starting Semester Recommended Postmark Deadline Final Postmark Deadline
Fall June 15 July 20
Spring October 31 November 30
Summer March 31 April 15

Typically, admissions decisions will be communicated to applicants within 3 weeks of the deadline. Complete applications received by the recommended deadline will be considered for admission, denial or deferral of the admission decision until the second/final review of applications. Complete applications received after the recommended deadline but on or before the final deadline date will be handled in the final review of applications (subject to program capacity). Decisions at this stage will either be admission, denial or deferral for consideration of admission in the following semester (or summer term). An application is considered complete when:

  1. applicants have submitted a completed application form with application fee and essay and
  2. additional supporting materials (GMAT**, official transcripts, etc.) have been received.

* Additional processing time may be necessary for international student applications. Official transcripts from international educational institutions often require additional evaluation.
** Typically, international applicants will also be required to submit TOEFL scores.

Admissions decisions are final. An applicant who is deferred to the following semester will automatically be considered in the set of Recommended Deadline applications for that semester. Applicants who are denied admission may apply for consideration for a later semester by submitting updated application materials.

Starting Semester:

Students who are granted admission into a graduate business program are expected to start during the stated desired starting semester. Any student not starting coursework during that semester must communicate with the Director of Graduate Programs to maintain their admission status into the next semester.

Transfer Course Work:

Applicants may request a review of previous graduate transcripts for consideration of transfer credit within the 36 credit hour graduate program (generally up to 6 credit hours). Factors such as graduate program accreditation, course relevance to business administration or strategic finance, grade earned [at least a B (3.0)], and length of time since course completion will be considered. This review should be conducted at the time of admission into the graduate business program. The final disposition of all transfer coursework is coordinated and determined by the Director.

Foundations Requirements

Foundations courses are required to prepare students for full admission into the graduate business curriculum. Students with a bachelor’s degree in business from an AACSB-accredited institution will be understood to have automatically met the MBA Foundations requirements. In other cases, the Graduate Business Office will evaluate the student’s transcript(s) for prior coursework equivalencies. Applicants who have not met all of the Foundations coursework requirements may be “conditionally admitted” for the purpose of Foundations completion. Upon completion of the Foundations requirements, a student is considered for admission into the graduate business curriculum. Typically, one graduate course may be taken in the same semester as the final Foundations course while still under conditional admission status. The student’s overall Foundations GPA is expected to be at least 3.0 in order to be considered for admission into a graduate business program. Students who do not have at least a 3.0 Foundations GPA will not be permitted to take one graduate course with their last Foundations course while under conditional admission status.

Students may contact the Graduate Business Office about challenging a Foundations course requirement by examination. Only one challenge exam per Foundations course may be taken. Challenge exams are an option only prior to the first entry into the course. No credit by examination will be given for courses contained in the graduate business curriculum.

Students who stop taking classes for at least 2 consecutive regular semesters (Fall or Spring) must file an appeal for reinstatement in the Graduate Business Programs Office. If such reinstatement is granted, the student will be subject to the Bulletin in effect at the time of reinstatement.

Do you have an undergraduate degree in a field other than Business and wish to pursue an. M.B.A or M.S.S.F degree?

If so, QuickStart is a comprehensive program that will enable you to complete your business foundations courses in just one semester!

Our experienced, caring faculty will equip you with the tools and knowledge you will need to succeed in either our M.B.A. or M.S.S.F. programs.

MBA Foundations
IU Southeast Course Credits
BUSE-F501 Foundations in Accounting 1.5
BUSE-F502 Foundations in Finance 1.5
BUSE-F503 Foundations in Economics 1.5
BUSE-F504 Foundations in Marketing .5  online, self paced course
BUSE-F505 Foundations in Quantitative Tools 1.5
BUSE-F506 Foundations in Management .5  online, self paced course

At Indiana University Southeast, both the M.B.A. and M.S.S.F are designed for working professionals seeking a high-quality, part-time graduate business experience.

Our programs offer small class sizes, flexible scheduling, and convenient locations. The powerful combination of national rankings and reasonable tuition provides superior value and return on investment for graduate students.

MSSF Curriculum - 30 Graduate Credit Hours

Required Courses (21 credit hours)
BUSE A505 Strategic Cost Management
A507 Modeling & Simulation
C522 Financial Management
E577 Financial Statement Analysis
E597 Fraud Issues in Business
E594 Business Analysis & Valuation
E595 Advanced Corporate Finance
(Director Permission: typically taken in last year of program completion)
Electives (9 credit hours)
E551* Managerial Forecasting
E552 Negotiation
E554 Human Resource Management
E557 Investment Management
E560 Venture Growth Management
E562 Special Topics in Business - when topic is relevant to MSSF degree plan
E567 Portfolio Management and Investment Analysis
E568 International Financial Management
E581 Special Topics: Information Technology Management Issues
E588 Project Management
E590 Independent Study - course topic must be approved by Director as relevant to MSSF degree plan

Analysis of Current Economic and Business Conditions

E596* Intermediate Accounting II
G533* Auditing
H541* Not-for-Profit Accounting
H546* Advanced Corporate Taxation
A maximum of 3 credit hours from the following list:
  A506 Managerial Economics
  A508 Organizational Behavior & Leadership
  B511 Business Communications (1.5 cr hr)
  B513 International Environmental Analysis (1.5 cr hr)
  B516 Legal & Ethical Environment of Business
  C521 Marketing Management
  C523 Systems Decision Theory & Applications

*Cross-listed graduate elective courses are available for graduate students who have not previously taken the undergraduate equivalent. Any undergraduate prerequisite requirements must be met.

Community Service Requirement

Graduate Business students must perform at least 20 hours of community service in a project that involves their contribution in the form of business knowledge, leadership, and/or expertise. Some examples include volunteering for Big Brothers/Big Sisters, providing tax assistance for the elderly or disadvantaged, participating in a United Way agency, or serving on a not-for-profit board or advisory council. Activities that serve a narrowly defined population such as being an officer at the local Rotary Club or a church deacon are not appropriate for this requirement.

Furthermore, participation in admirable community service projects such as Habitat for Humanity would not be acceptable unless the service was in the form of contributing business expertise or in a leadership role.

Services in which the student organizes and/or directs the project for a non-profit organization are acceptable. Examples such as directing and/or organizing a community cleanup sponsored by the Rotary Club or chairing a church clothing drive for the needy are acceptable projects because they serve a need of the greater community.

The requirement may be completed at any time during the academic program. It is strongly recommended that the student plan to complete this requirement prior to the last 6 credit hours of coursework in the graduate curriculum. Students must submit a written proposal outlining a plan for satisfying this requirement to the Graduate Director for approval prior to performing the project.

The proposal should contain the following information:

  1. Name of the community organization or project selected to fulfill this requirement.
  2. Name and telephone number of a contact person at the organization.
  3. How your business knowledge, leadership, and expertise will be applied.
  4. Estimated time frame for completion of the project, including beginning and ending dates, if possible.

Normally, proposals are approved within one week of submission. Proposals that differ from typical projects, however, may require additional time for approval. Any services rendered prior to the approval of a proposal do not satisfy this requirement. Certification by the participating organization is also required. At the conclusion of the Community Service activity, students must submit a one- to two-page typewritten report summarizing the project, project outcomes and student’s contributions to these outcomes to the Director of the Graduate Business Programs for final approval.

Regular academic advising is strongly recommended for timely, successful completion of your MBA or MSSF degree plan. To schedule an appointment with Sharon Allen, the Director of Graduate Business Programs, please call to schedule an appointment.

Graduate Business Programs Office

Phone: (812) 941-2364
Location: Hillside Hall 214
Email: iusmba@ius.edu

  1. Knowledge of Accounting and FinanceStudents demonstrate knowledge of professional accounting and finance conceptsand tools.
  2. Application and Integration of Accounting and FinanceStudents effectively apply and integrate accounting and finance concepts and tools foranalysis and decision making.
  3. Professional CommunicationStudents professionally present financial and accounting information and analysis.
  4. Social ResponsibilityStudents demonstrate knowledge of and sensitivity to ethical issues impacting financialconditions and financial reporting that will assist them in advancing their organizationsand society in an ethical way. Students engage their business knowledge and skills toserve the community.

MSSF Program Courses (BUSE)

A505 Strategic Cost Management (3cr)
Discussion of the development and use of accounting information for managerial control and decision making. Accounting methods for cost accumulation and allocation, standard costing, budgeting, inventory valuations, performance measurement, cost-volume-profit relationships, special decisions, current developments in managerial accounting, and other topics will be discussed.

A507 Modeling & Simulation (3cr)
To increase decision-making effectiveness by learning more about quantitative methodology and by better understanding its contribution to the decision making process. Includes analysis and solution of realistic problems using microcomputer software.

C522 Financial Management (3cr)
A study of the theory and practice of corporate finance. Areas studied include organizing capital expenditure, planning dividend policy and capital structure strategies, making short-term financial decisions, mergers, pension plans, and the international aspect of corporate finance.

E577 Financial Statement Analysis (3cr)
The purpose of the course is to develop the conceptual and practical skills needed for in-depth company analysis and honing of critical thinking skills useful in understanding financial reporting concepts and analyzing financial statements. The course combines a text that develops financial statement analysis concepts with a text covering  cases (using well-known companies) specific to particular aspects of financial reporting and analysis.

E580 Community Service in Business (0cr)
All MBA and MSSF students must complete a community service project to graduate. This involves donating a minimum of 20 hours to an approved community project (e.g. volunteering for Big Brothers/Big Sisters; providing tax assistance for the elderly; participating in a United Way agency) and a written report to the Graduate Business office.

E594 Business Analysis & Valuation (3cr)
Use of financial statement data to: analyze business strategy, assess accounting policies and estimates for analysis and valuation purposes, evaluate financial performance utilizing financial ratio and cash flow measures, and forecast a firm’s future to estimate its value. Resulting information is used in a variety of decision-making contexts.

E595 Advanced Corporate Finance (3cr)
Practical analysis of financial problems in case-oriented format. Financial models will be used to place data in analytical form to aid the analysis. Areas covered include allocating capital for real investment, financing a firm, knowing whether and how to hedge various risks, and allocating funds for financial investments.

E597 Fraud Issues in Business (3cr)
This course provides a framework for managers to understand, prevent, and detect fraud. Topics include fraud law; who commits fraud and why; fraud symptoms, prevention, and detection; common fraud schemes; fraudster profiles; auditor responsibilities and study of current and historical cases of real-life frauds.

Elective Courses (BUSE)

E551 Managerial Forecasting (3cr)

The purpose of this course is to teach students to model and estimate economic problems effectively. Classical regression analysis and its most important exceptions (special cases) will be addressed. Understanding the intuition behind modeling the system and the subsequent results will also be heavily emphasized.

E552 Negotiation (3cr)

An introduction to frameworks, processes, strategies and tactics of negotiation. Conceptual and experiential learning are integrated to provide students with a toolkit of negotiation skills applicable in a variety of negotiation settings commonly faced by managers. We will emphasize skill development through role playing and cases.

E553 Consumer Behavior (3cr)
To provide an interdisciplinary approach to understanding consumer buying behavior. Emphasis is on the individual and social processes that influence the consumer in the marketplace.

E554 Human Resource Management (3cr)
This course deals with major topic areas within the field of human resource management. It is a survey of principal theoretical, legal, and applied concerns that influence both public and private sector employers. Special attention is given to applications of timely interest to private employers.

E557 Investment Management (3cr)
Emphasizing the formulation of policies and portfolio strategies in the management of investment funds for individuals and institutions. Topics also include methods of investment analysis and selection, investment timing, and evaluation of portfolio performance.

E560 Venture Growth Management (3cr)
This course explores what it takes to start and successfully work in a small business from startup to ongoing concern. Topics include leadership, prioritization and balancing control and agility in a dynamic environment. Also discussed are the basics of business planning including the business model, the customer value proposition, and the elevator pitch. If you plan to start or work with a small business, this course will help you chart the course ahead in exploring the new business environment.

E562 Special Topics in Business (3cr)
Course topics vary. For each semester this course is offered, the specific topic will be indicated.

E567 Portfolio Management and Investment Analysis (3cr)
This course introduces students to the basics of portfolio management and investment analysis. Students will be exposed to the theoretical and practical components of investment analysis for the purpose of security selection and portfolio management. Topics include developing investor policy statements, security valuation, portfolio  allocation, risk measurement, and investment ethics.

E568 International Financial Management (3cr)
Financial management of foreign operations of the firm. Financial constraints of the international environment and their
effect on standard concepts of financial management. Study of international currency flow, forward cover, and international banking practices.

E581 Special Topics: Information Technology Management Issues (3cr)
The course will focus on the key information systems issues that exist in the business world that must be managed, dealt with, and resolved. Such issues include data center consolidations, outsourcing, IS resources/staffing, client server systems management, telecommunications, and the infrastructure to support business initiatives.

E588 Project Management (3cr)
This course introduces students to the full range of project management problems, solution methods, and decision processes. Topics include: project selection, project organizational structures, project planning, scheduling, and budgeting, negotiations, project monitoring and control, project auditing and determination, and resource constrained project scheduling.

E590 Independent Study (3cr)
Research, analysis, and discussion of current business related issues for academic credit. Approval must be granted by the Graduate Business office and supervised by a Graduate Business faculty member. Can be repeated for a total of 6 credit hours.

E591 Analysis of Current Economic and Business Conditions (3cr)
Analysis of Current Economic and Business Conditions is an intensive applied course. The course will monitor and analyze economic indicators and follow trends for the purpose of forecasting the macro-economic outlook.

E592 E-Business
The transition to an information-based service economy is reality. This transition, fueled by internet-based technology, is having a significant impact on how business is conducted and how businesses are structured. This course will examine the impact and potential of Web-based technology on business principles and practices.

E596 Intermediate Accounting II (3cr)
This course provides a more detailed examination of U.S. financial reporting topics, with an introduction to International Financial Reporting Standards. Topics include reporting for liabilities, stock holders’ equity, financial reporting of taxes and leases, error reporting, and full disclosure in financial reporting.

G533 Auditing (3cr)
In-depth study of the process of auditing, attestation, and assurance services in an advanced technological environment. Includes coverage of auditing and attestation standards, the code of professional conduct, auditor’s legal responsibilities, fraud auditing, and the emerging issues of global auditing.

H541 Not-For-Profit Accounting (3cr)
Accounting for non-profit-seeking entities: state and municipal governments, schools, hospitals, and philanthropic entities. Includes study of GAAP for these entities as promulgated by FASB and GASB.

H546 Advanced Corporate Taxation (3cr)
This course will address advanced corporate formation, merger and acquisitions, and liquidations. The course material also covers tax topics specific to corporations such as when to make the Corporate Selection and the accumulated earnings tax.



Faculty Bio Thumbnail
Kathleen G. Arano
Assistant Professor of Economics
Phone: (812) 941-2536
Office Location: HH 028
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Jon Bingham
Senior Lecturer in Economics
Phone: (812) 941-2095
Office Location: HH 119
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Lisa Book
Lecturer in Accounting
Phone: (812) 941-2055
Office Location: HH 219 F
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Jeffrey Byrne
Lecturer in Accounting
Phone: (812) 941-2869
Office Location: HH 011 A
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Linda Christiansen
Professor of Business
Phone: (812) 941-2519
Office Location: HH 011 B
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Kathryn W. Ernstberger
Professor of Business Administration
Phone: (812) 941-2651
Office Location: HH 219 C
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George Richard (Rick) French
Professor of Accounting
Phone: (812) 941-2429
Office Location: HH 219A
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Yan He
Associate Professor of Finance
Phone: (812) 941-2308
Office Location: HH 032
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A. Jay White
Associate Professor of Finance
Dean, School of Business
Phone: (812) 941-2521
Office Location: HH 214A
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Alan Wong
Professor of Finance
Phone: (812) 941-2423
Office Location: HH 020
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Staff Picture Sharon Allen
Sharon Allen
Director of Graduate Business Programs
HH 219D
(812) 941-2364
Staff Picture Kim Shaughnessy
Kim Shaughnessy
Records Specialist
(812) 941-2364