SBUBolivar, Missouri Est. 1878


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Troy Bethards, D.B.A.
College Dean
(417) 328-1757

The Impact of Obtaining a Degree through the College of Business and Computer Science at SBU

There are several different reporting measures the College of Business and Computer Science utilizes in order to identify what our graduates obtain as a result of their educational experience at SBU.  While the pursuit of a Christian higher education has a number of intangible experiences, the items that follow will help to convey the educational significance our graduates have gained.

Major Field Test

The Major Field Test is a test given to students pursuing a bachelor’s degree by the ETS organization (the same company that administers the SAT test). ETS reports that from September 2010 to June 2012, 585 colleges and universities utilized this instrument to evaluate the capabilities of their soon-to-be graduates. 

According the ETS website, “the ETS® Major Field Tests are … outcomes assessments designed to measure the critical knowledge and understanding obtained by students in a major field of study. The Major Field Tests go beyond the measurement of factual knowledge by helping you evaluate students’ ability to analyze and solve problems, understand relationships and interpret material from their major field of study.”  The areas of study considered on the Major Field Test are:

  • Accounting
  • Economics
  • Finance
  • Information Systems
  • International Issues
  • Legal and Social Environment
  • Management
  • Marketing
  • Quantitative Business Analysis


The ETS website goes on to say that, “ETS offers comprehensive national comparative data for the Major Field Tests, enabling you to evaluate your students' performance and compare your program's effectiveness to programs at similar institutions nationwide.”

The data is presented in percentiles with 99% being the highest ranking of those taking the test and 1% being the lowest.  Here is how Southwest Baptist University students have performed over the last several semesters.


Overall Institutional Percentile Ranking

Spring 2013

98th percentile

Fall 2012

85th percentile

Spring 2012

86th percentile

Fall 2011

99th percentile

Spring 2011

95th percentile (95 was highest value ETS assigned for this period)

Fall 2010

95th percentile (95 was highest value ETS assigned for this period)

Certified Public Accountant (CPA) Exam Results

The CPA is administered by the American Institute of CPAs.  The test is administered in four different sections.  These are

  1. Auditing and Attestation
  2. Business Environment and Concepts
  3. Financial Accounting and Reporting
  4. Regulation

Since the inception of the computer-based CPA Exam in 2004, SBU Accounting graduates have passed exam parts at a cumulative 58% rate versus a 46% national average. While almost one-third of our accounting graduates do not attempt the CPA exam for various reasons, approximately 50% of all SBU Accounting graduates are CPAs today.

Employment rates of graduates

Students graduating from colleges and universities across the United States tend to fall into one of the five following situations: 

  1. A student has been active in seeking employment prior to graduation, has been offered a position with an organization, and agreed to accept the position upon graduation.
  2. A student has applied and been accepted to a graduate program they will pursue upon graduating with their bachelor’s degree.
  3. A student has begun looking for employment or is seeking acceptance into a graduate program but has yet to secure their desired position.
  4. While finishing his or her bachelor’s degree, the student is not geographically positioned where they would like to live or is not devoting attention to the job search process early enough to secure employment prior to graduation.
  5. The student shows little if any initiative to find employment or pursue further education.

The College of Business and Computer Science rarely sees individuals which would fall into the fifth category discussed above.  This is partially related to the rigor and quality of the programs offered.  The programs provided at SBU simply do not appeal to that type of student.  However, we do have students which would fall into the first four categories which leads to the employment rates provided below.

Historically, we have typically found that more than 90% of our graduates have secured employment within six months of graduation.  For the most recent graduating class, 78% have been admitted to a graduate program or have accepted a position of employment within two months of graduation.  In fact, 59% of our students had obtained employment or had been accepted into a graduate program prior to graduation. 

Where do our students find jobs?

What follows is a non-comprehensive list of organizations that employ our graduates.  It has been segmented according to each department that resides within the College of Business and Computer Science.

Accounting Department

Central Bank
Missouri State Auditors
Ernst & Young
Rubin Brown
Leggett & Platt
Grant Thornton
Kirkpatrick, Phillips, & Miller
O’Reilly Auto Parts
Citizens Memorial Healthcare

Business Administration Department

Citizens Memorial Health Care
Bank of Bolivar
Jack Henry & Associates
Net York Life
Bank of America
Boeing Intellectual Property Management
Progressive Insurance
O’Reilly Auto Parts
Wal-Mart headquarters
Reckitt Benckiser (Budapest)
GE Capital (Netherlands)

Computer and Information Science Department

Wal-Mart ISD
Shelter Insurance
Jack Henry & Associates
Tyler Technologies
Central Bank
Enterprise Leasing
Department of Defense
O’Reilly Automotive
Perceptive Software
CGI Federal
FIS Global

Departmental Assessment Reports

Business Administration
Computer and Information Sciences