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Operations Management


Operations management programs prepare people to run production or technical operations in businesses, hospitals, and agencies.

Operations management programs prepare people to run production or technical operations in firms. Students learn how to make production systems more efficient. For example, they learn to control for costs and quality. They also learn to manage people who work in the skilled trades.

Operations management programs include topics such as:


Many colleges and universities offer bachelor’s degrees in operations management. A bachelor's degree usually takes about four years of full-time study.

Some universities offer graduate degrees in operations management. One option is to focus on operations management while earning a Master of Business Administration (MBA) degree. A master’s degree typically requires two years of study beyond a bachelor’s degree. Doctoral (PhD) degree programs usually require two or more years of study beyond the master’s degree.

Operations management programs are sometimes offered through engineering departments.

See schools that offer this program.

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Program Admission

You can prepare for this program by taking courses in high school that prepare you for college. This typically includes four years of English, three years of math, three years of social studies, and two years of science. Some colleges also require two years of a second language.

Below is a list of high school courses that will help prepare you for this program of study:

Graduate Admissions

Admission to graduate programs is competitive. You need a bachelor's degree, good grades, and good test scores. Your bachelor's degree may be in operations management or in some other business field. It also may be in another field that uses mathematical models, such as engineering, economics, or statistics.

Additional requirements at some schools include:

Typical Course Work

The undergraduate program typically includes courses in the following subjects:

In addition, to prepare for a career in operations management you probably will want to take some of the following courses. More of them will be available (and required) in a MS or master of operations management program than in a bachelor's or MBA program:

A list of common graduate requirements is below:

Things to Know

Business courses in high school are generally not useful preparation for a career in operations management. Your transcript should show that you are preparing for a demanding college-level program.


East Side Area

Washington State University - Pullman

King-Snohomish Area

Bellevue College

Green River College

University of Washington - Bothell

University of Washington - Seattle

Kitsap Area

Olympic College

Spokane Area

Eastern Washington University

Eastern Washington University (Spokane Campus)

Spokane Falls Community College

Tacoma Area

Clover Park Technical College

Pacific Lutheran University

Tri-Cities Area

Columbia Basin College

Vancouver Area

Clark College

West Side Area

Bellingham Technical College

Western Washington University