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Acquisition and Program Management

Acquisition and Program Management

Program Description

The Graduate School of Engineering and Management, Department of Systems Engineering and Management, offers the Master of Science in Acquisition and Program Management (GAQ). The GAQ program is designed to provide students with creative problem solving and critical thinking skills needed to effectively manage and work within the Department of Defense (DoD) and the USAF acquisition community. Additionally, the degree reflects the importance of enhancing the interface between the acquisition management career field and Science, Technology, Engineering, and Mathematics (STEM) fields. The curriculum integrates a strong foundation in quantitative analysis with specific engineering, management, and economic topics in order to prepare students to contribute effectively in a variety of complex and challenging roles within the military acquisition management system. The curriculum includes courses in decision and risk analysis, systems engineering, project management, and research methods. In addition, students have the opportunity to focus in a specific specialty area: systems management or program management.

Admissions Requirements

Degree Required: Bachelor's degree.

GPA Required: Overall - 3.0; Mathematics - 3.0; Major - 3.0

Mathematics Required:  A minimum of one course in college algebra and successful completion of at least one course in probability/statistics.

Test Required: GMAT 550 (28 Verbal, 37 Quantitative, 4.5 Analytical Writing) or GRE 153V/148Q (within the last five years).

Experience: A minimum of 3 years experience in DoD acquisitions. Highly desire 5-6 years (i.e., two assignments).

The Department of Systems Engineering and Management can grant waivers to these requirements on a case-by-case basis, or corrected through additional coursework, as approved by the Curriculum Committee. Students in the Wright-Patterson AFB area may register for individual courses as a part-time student (space available) but are expected to meet the above criteria.

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Outcomes & Objectives

Program Educational Objectives (PEOs):

The educational objective of the acquisition and program management program is to have graduates who are well-prepared to use analytical concepts and methods to make significant progress toward solving problems of interest to the Air Force and Department of Defense. Graduates will be able to consistently apply sound principles of decision making, risk assessment, program management, and systems thinking to real issues that arise in the acquisition community. They will be independent, trusted advisors in proposing, developing, and implementing policy related to the acquisition of DoD weapon systems.

Student Outcomes (SOs):

All graduates of the GAQ program should be able to:

1) Effectively communicate technical, complex material using both oral and written communications

2) Conduct and present methodical research to solve complex and ambiguous problems

3) Understand and apply quantitative decision and risk analysis methods in a complex management and systems environment

4) Understand and apply concepts from various business disciplines within the specific context of DoD acquisition management

5) Understand the unique challenges of the DoD acquisition environment

Program Chair

Lt Col Clay Koschnick

Degree Information

Degree Type: Master's


Delivery Method: In-Residence


Degree Requirements

The minimum curriculum satisfying the degree requirements consists of an acquisition management core, research methods and statistics foundation, a focus area, and twelve hours of thesis research. Additional electives may be required.

  • Core coursework (16 hours)
  • Methods requirements (7 hours)
  • Focus sequence (13 hours)
  • Thesis research (12 hours)

Graduate School Catalog
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Air Force Institute of Technology
2950 Hobson Way
Wright-Patterson Air Force Base, OH 45433-7765
Commercial: 937-255-6565 | DSN: 785-6565