Having “MST” after your name is a high distinction in the tax world. It indicates that you are well versed in the area of taxation, skilled at tax research and able to deal intelligently with the complexity of today’s tax rules. MST is a 30 unit program which allows you to enroll full-time and complete the degree in 12 months or part-time and be finished in 24­‑36 months. And talk about flexible, our classes are scheduled to work around the busy tax season.

Admission Requirements

Admission to the MST program is offered each fall and spring semester. Admission requirements include:

  • Four-year bachelors degree (any major) from an accredited U.S. college or university or an equivalent degree from a recognized institution outside the United States.
    • For transcripts or degrees earned outside of the United States and Canada: Graduate Admissions (GAPE) requires that you submit a WES (Basic or ICAP) evaluation. Directions are available on the WES (World Education Services).
  • 3.0-grade point average (last 60 semester/90 quarter units)
  • GMAT or GRE: Scores at the 50th percentile in both the verbal and quantitative sections of the exam. Or, conditional on the approval of the MST Director, the GMAT/GRE requirement may be waived if the applicant has any of following.
    • Earned a Ph.D. in the United States
    • Passed all parts of the CPA exam (in the United States)
    • Passed the Enrolled Agent exam administered by the IRS.
    • Scored 145 or higher in the LSAT exam
    • Graduated with honors from the Lucas College of Business Gary J. Sbona Honors Program within the last five years.
    • A GPA of at least 3.2 from an accredited U.S. university AND completed at least three years of full-time work experience in taxation. An interview with the MST Director and/or a letter from the supervisor attesting to the type of work responsibilities may be required.
    • A GPA of at least 3.75 from an accredited U.S. university. An interview with the MST Director may be required.

      For consideration of the GMAT/GRE waiver, you MUST complete the CSU application and the waiver request which requires you to attach documentation.
  • English Language Proficiency exam may be required if you have earned your degree outside the United States. You may select one of these exams:

TOEFL score of 80 or higher (IBT)

IELTS score of 6.5 or higher

  • Personal Statement
  • Resume

Pre-requisite Requirements

If you have earned an undergraduate degree in accounting from an institution in the United States, then you have completed all the prerequisite courses for the MST program. If you have earned an undergraduate degree in accounting from an institution outside of the United States, you will still need to complete a course in Tax (comparable to Taxation of Individuals and Flow-Through Entities) in an institution located in the United States.

If you have not earned an accounting undergraduate degree, you will need to complete the following undergraduate courses (or equivalent) prior to admission. Required accounting courses should be based on U.S. GAAP. We’ve included the course numbers in the parenthesis in case you’d like to take them at SJSU:

  • Financial Accounting (BUS1 020)
  • Managerial Accounting (BUS1 021)
  • Intermediate Accounting I (BUS1 121A)
  • Intermediate Accounting II (BUS1 121B)
  • Taxation of Individuals and Flow-Through Entities (BUS1 123A) – a comparable course must be completed at an institution located in the United States.

We recommend you take these courses prior to beginning our program:

  • Business Law (BUS3 080)
  • Computer Tools for Business (BUS4 091L)
  • Fundamentals of Finance (BUS1 170)

You can fulfill these requirements at a community college, as well.


The MS in Tax offers admission twice a year, in fall and in spring. Spring applications open August 1-November 1 with documents due by November 20 and fall applications open October 1-May 1 with documents due by May 20. International applicants can apply for spring from August 1-October 1 and for fall from October 1-May 1.

Program Overview

  • Program Type: Full-time or part-time
  • Completion Time: 12 months-36 months
  • Courses to complete degree:10 courses (30 units)
  • Course length:8-10 weeks
  • Schedule: Evening, Saturday, and online
  • Open University: Yes, Fall and Spring
  • International Students F-1 Visa: Yes
  • Admission: Fall and Spring
  • Location: Lucas Business Complex
  • Estimated Costs: $645 per unit, the total cost for the 30 unit program is $19,350.
Program taught in:
  • English

See 2 more programs offered by San Jose State University - Lucas College and Graduate School of Business »

Last updated August 30, 2019
This course is Campus based
Start Date
Jan 2020
Aug 2020
12 - 36 months
19,350 USD
Nov 1, 2019
May 1, 2020
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