Project Management

University Center (UC), Room 155, (907) 786-1924

The Master of Science degree in Project Management (MSPM) is designed to provide a rigorous background in contemporary theory and practice in project management, strengthened through the extensive application of tools, concepts and critical thinking in a case study environment. The MSPM provides students with perspectives and skills to prepare them for increasingly significant and complex project leadership roles within a broad range of public and private sector organizations:  engineering, construction, oil and gas, natural resources, health care, information technology, communications, utilities, education, financial services, government, military, transportation, and others. 

The MSPM degree program is accredited by the Project Management Institute (PMI) Global Accreditation Center (GAC). The structure and content of the curriculum is designed to enable students to learn, apply, and demonstrate mastery of project management theory and practice in the context of hands-on project case studies managed and integrated progressively over the end-to-end project lifecycle as well as electives that provide opportunities for advanced study and application of project management in targeted industry sectors. Additionally, students will develop and strengthen leadership, communication, teamwork, and professional responsibility traits necessary to lead and manage successful projects in a complex, global environment. The MSPM degree requires a research or project oriented capstone.

The program serves full- and part-time students. Classes are generally held during the evening and selectively on weekends. The program provides a unique, real-time distance educational environment where students from across the state and around the world can join local students and faculty in the live classroom environment. This approach also accommodates students who may need to travel regularly for their employment.


Master of Science,
Project Management

Student Outcomes

Student outcomes are based on the professional best practices of the Project Management Institute (PMI) Global Accreditation Center (GAC) standards and guidelines, and UAA paradigms. Students who successfully complete this program will:

  1. Demonstrate the capability to successfully manage projects across a broad range of scale, complexity, scope, environments and inherent risks.
  2. Demonstrate the ability to employ the full range of project management tools and techniques to best satisfy industry and agency stakeholder requirements.
  3. Conduct research that significantly contributes to and expands the diverse project management body of knowledge and produces a final project and product that demonstrates academic and project management success.
  4. Demonstrate the ability to plan and execute project management activities across a broad range of industry sectors and organizations, and to employ the appropriate project management tools and techniques across a wide spectrum of project types, technologies and requirements.
  5. Have the skills to determine the needs and balance the interests of project stakeholders in any organizational context and within cross-cultural business environments.
  6. Demonstrate effective project team leadership and team development throughout the project management life cycle.
  7. Effectively apply the principles of scope management, risk management, cost planning and control, quality planning and management, resource allocation and management, time management and project scheduling, and change management in the project environment.
  8. Demonstrate a facility for comprehensive and objective analysis, structured decision-making, process optimization, and problem solving in the project management environment.
  9. Understand and apply the principles of cost-benefit analysis, strategic alignment, project portfolio management and project performance analysis and metrics.
  10. Understand and apply project planning and execution optimization and control in the context of the triple constraint; project scope, schedule, and budget.
  11. Act with integrity and fairness in an ethical manner, understanding and demonstrating adherence to the principles of the Project Management Code of Ethics and Professional Conduct (
  12. Demonstrate effective project management communications and problem-solving techniques related to project team management, project status reporting, conflict management and project stakeholder management.

Professional Program Fee

A professional program fee is required of all students taking MSPM program courses in addition to UAA published graduate tuition fees, course material fees, general support and student activity fees. The professional program fee is assessed for each course at a sum equal to the current level of resident graduate level tuition. Therefore, this fee is applied to either resident or non-resident tuition equally and is charged upon enrollment in PM courses. The fee contributes directly to program support.

Admission Requirements

See Admissions Requirements for Graduate Degrees.

Provisional/Conditional Admission

Provisional/conditional admission to the MSPM program is offered to applicants who provide sufficient evidence that they meet the requirements for study at an advanced level. Applicants must meet the minimum admissions requirements of the University of Alaska Anchorage. In addition, an entering master's degree student will have:

  1. Earned at least a bachelor's degree in engineering, science, or equivalent areas (or as agreed to by the program chair), from a regionally accredited institution in the United States or a foreign equivalent with a minimum GPA of 3.00 in undergraduate work.
  2. A grade of 3.00 (B) or higher in an undergraduate or equivalent research methods course and a statistics course that covers descriptive and inferential statistics. ESM A620 may be taken in lieu of the statistics requirement.
  3. Completed a minimum of two years of appropriate project management experience as shown by the applicant's resume.
  4. Obtained three letters of recommendation from professors, former or current employers or supervisors who are familiar with the candidate's work experience.
  5. Provided a statement of professional career objectives related to the study of project management.

All provisions stipulated on the Graduate Admission Recommendation Form (GARF) associated with a student's admission to the MSPM program must be completed within the timeframe stipulated;not to exceed one year for a full-time, and not to exceed two years for a part-time graduate student.Failure to satisfy provisions will result in a formal departmental review and potential removal from the program.

Full Admission

Full admission to the MSPM program is offered to students who have:

  1. Previously been admitted in to provisional/conditional admission status and satisfied the specified requirements stated in the GARF.
  2. Completed the first 9 credits of the core PM classes with a minimum grade of B in each. This completes phase gate 1 (see below).

    PM A601

    Project Management Fundamentals


    PM A602

    Application of Project Management Processes


    PM A603

    Project Initiation and Planning


    or PM A604

    Project Executing, Monitoring and Control

    Total Credits


  1. Undergone departmental review at completion of phase gate 1 (see below) and have been successfully judged to have made satisfactory progress, met performance standards and demonstrated aptitude in project management by the MSPM Admissions Committee.

Additional Requirements

Enrolled students must have access to a computer and if participating in a class remotely, an Internet connection speed the department finds acceptable. All students are expected to have basic computer and keyboarding skills prior to entry into the program, for example:

  • Word processing (preferably Microsoft Word), presentation software (preferably Microsoft PowerPoint) and spreadsheet software (preferably Microsoft Excel)
  • Sending and receiving e-mail with attachments
  • Accessing and navigating the Internet/World Wide Web
  • Understanding how to utilize basic computer file formats, software, and peripheral hardware.

Remote (distance) students, defined as those living and/or participating outside the Municipality of Anchorage, are additionally responsible for:

  • Any incremental, individual long-distance or high-speed Internet connection costs (refer to the department webpage for more details)
  • Any additional hardware (such as webcams, headsets, etc.) necessary to facilitate class participation
  • Contacting the distance learning coordinator before classes start to set up and arrange for distance delivery.

Academic Progress Requirements

Students enrolled in the MSPM program must:

  • Must receive a 3.00 (B) or better in all core classes.
  • Receive no more than one 2.00 (C) grade in any elective course.
  • Earn all credits, including transfer credits, within a consecutive seven-year period prior to graduation. See Graduate Degrees Policies for additional information.

As a prerequisite for PM A686A registration, students must have achieved the GPA requirements established as program expectations above. The faculty reserves the right, where warranted by evaluation of a student's progress and apparent knowledge, to require additional coursework or other preparation to ensure the degree candidate possesses adequate professional skills and capabilities. This includes the ability to reason and communicate both effectively and quantitatively, orally, and in writing.

Noncompliance with academic progress expectations will result in probation and possible dismissal from the program. See the Academic Good Standing policy for more information.

Continuous Registration

Graduate students must demonstrate continuous progress toward program completion. MSPM candidates must complete at least one approved program course during any 12-month consecutive period to maintain active status in the program.Candidates not making continuous progress and not on an approved leave of absence will be removed from master's degree-seeking status. See Graduate Degrees Policies for additional information on leaves of absence.

Course Delivery

Students in the MSPM program can attend courses in the classroom and/or by state-of-the-art, real-time video capabilities. This format allows students from across the state and around the world to join local students and faculty in real time, in the classroom as an active course participant using readily available, off-the-shelf technology. This real-time capability also enables students who must travel during the semester to join the class via ad hoc connections from wherever they may be located (connection speed permitting). Additionally, all class sessions are recorded and posted to the UAA learning management system after the class session is completed so that students can review the material in the event that a class session is missed. This approach provides flexibility for students to begin and complete the program from wherever their work assignments or personal situations may take them.

Graduation Requirements

Program Requirements

Core Requirements

PM Overview (6 cr):

PM A601

Project Management Fundamentals


PM A602

Application of Project Management Processes


PM Process Series (9 cr):

PM A603

Project Initiation and Planning


PM A604

Project Executing, Monitoring and Control


PM A605

Operational Integration and Project Closure


Capstone Project Demonstration of PM Mastery (6 cr) :

PM A686A

Capstone Project: Initiating and Planning


PM A686B

Capstone Project: Executing, Controlling and Closing



Complete an additional 12 credits of PM courses as electives *


Total Credits



A student may petition for a single elective 3 credit graduate level course from outside the program. 

Departmental Review/Phase Gates

  1. Phase Gate 1 (after completion of the first three core classes: PM A601, PM A602 and either PM A603 or PM A604): Students will be admitted provisionally/conditionally to the program until this phase gate has been successfully completed. Phase gates are established in order to evaluate a student's progress, performance and their demonstrated potential to be a successful project manager.
  2. Phase Gate 2 (after completion of PM A686A): Students must receive departmental approval prior to enrollment in PM A686B after the successful completion of an advisory committee-approved project management plan and Institutional Review Board (IRB) review (as appropriate) accomplished in PM A686A.

An approved GSP will be created, approved and fulfilled for each student to define their individual program of study.

Local classroom and/or real-time distance participation is required.

Capstone Project

Three credits of PM A686A and 3 credits of PM A686B, taken over two semesters, are required for the degree.

All capstone project work must meet the following requirements:

  • The work must contribute to the body of knowledge in the student's graduate field of study.
  • A literature search is required to demonstrate how the work is associated with the current state of the art in the student's graduate field of study.
  • The final capstone project report, as judged by the student's graduate advisory committee, must be of sufficient quality to justify publication in either a peer-reviewed technical conference proceeding or a peer-reviewed journal. Publication of a manuscript in a journal or conference paper is not a requirement for graduation, but submissions are encouraged.
  • The work must demonstrate command of knowledge and skills associated with the student's graduate program of study.
  • The project must have sufficient scope to clearly demonstrate the student's advanced expertise in and mastery of project management.
  • The work must require a level of effort consistent with 6 graduate level credit hours.
  • The student must satisfactorily present their capstone project and be evaluated by a panel of faculty and project management practitioners.

A total of 33 credits are required for the degree.

We are working to ensure reporting student performance information is consistent with institution policies. If you are interested in learning more about performance and expectations, please contact our department for more information. 

Engineering, Science, and Project Management Department
Project Management (PM) Program
(907) 786-1924
(907) 786-1935 fax

  • Mailing address:
  • University of Alaska Anchorage
  • 3211 Providence Drive
  • University Center 155
  • Anchorage, AK 99508-4614

Roger Hull, Instructor, 

Seong Dae Kim, Assistant Professor,

LuAnn Piccard, Assistant Professor, ESPM Department Chair, and MSPM Program Chair,


See more at the UAA Catalog.

Page updated 05/22/2015.