Online Master of Science in Project Management Concentration in Program & Project Portfolio Management
The online MS in Project Management concentration in Program & Project Portfolio Management at Boston University’s Metropolitan College (MET) provides an expanded enterprise view and focus on the collection of programs and portfolios. Learn to evaluate the critical success factors that align with strategic goals of the organization and describe best practices for managing such a portfolio. You will construct a program management plan that takes advantage of best practices for the creation and management of programs and coordination of resources, schedule, finance, and risk at the enterprise level. You will also acquire in-depth practical knowledge of enterprise tools used in organizations to plan and manage a portfolio of programs and projects, and learn how to leverage project analytics data to make well-informed decisions.
According to the Project Management Institute’s 2020 Pulse of the Profession®, “Organizations are undergoing a fundamental paradigm shift in which projects are no longer adjacent to operations but instead primary to how work gets done and problems get solved. In today’s C-suite—and tomorrow’s—it is the portfolio that disrupts, that innovates, that expands and thrives.” As projects continue to play a central role in how organizations conduct operations, more people will be hired to manage project portfolios. The need for employees with applicable skills will continue to grow as industries become more project-oriented—and those with the talent will find an abundance of roles in a global economy that will need 25 million new project professionals by 2030 (PMI 2021 Talent Gap Report).
Students who complete the Project Management master’s degree concentration in Program & Project Portfolio Management will be able to:
- Evaluate critical success factors for projects and programs across industries, use these factors to create project portfolios that align with strategic goals of the organization, and describe best practices for managing such a portfolio.
- Construct a program management plan that describes best practices for the creation and management of programs and how to plan and coordinate resources, procurement, schedules, finance, risk, and change.
- Acquire in-depth practical knowledge of sophisticated, powerful, and highly integrated enterprise tools used in organizations to plan and manage a portfolio of programs and projects, and learn how to leverage project analytics data to make well-informed decisions.
Awards & Accreditations
Accredited by the Project Management Institute® (PMI) Global Accreditation Center for Project Management Education Programs (GAC)
The GAC Accredited Program seal is a mark of Project Management Institute, Inc.
Why Choose BU’s Master of Science in Project Management?
- In 2023, Metropolitan College’s online master’s degrees in management were ranked #9 among the Best Online Master's in Business Programs (Excluding MBA) by U.S. News & World Report.
- Boston University is an accredited member of AACSB International―The Association to Advance Collegiate Schools of Business.
- The MS in Project Management is also accredited by the Project Management Institute® (PMI) Global Accreditation Center for Project Management Education Programs (GAC).
- Students learn from internationally recognized and research-focused instructors who are also practitioners and leading authorities on topics such as mega-projects, program and project portfolios, agile principles, project and program governance, project planning and control, project management life cycle, methodologies of effective leadership and motivation, cost and risk management, management of project quality and procurement, earned value analysis, and communication.
- Project Management students have free access to hands-on, noncredit preparatory laboratories offered through the Department of Administrative Sciences, including Project Management Essentials (PM 100) and Introduction to Project, Program, and Portfolio Management (PM 200).
- A capstone course provides the benefit of a hands-on, experiential research project under the guidance of faculty and industry mentors.
8% increase in jobs through 2029
$97,180 median annual pay in 2020
11% increase in jobs through 2029
$87,660 median annual pay in 2020
Operations Research Analysts
25% increase in jobs through 2029
$86,200 median annual pay in 2020
Business Continuity Planners
5–9% increase in jobs through 2026
$70,010 median annual pay in 2017
Emergency Management Directors
4% increase in jobs through 2029
$76,250 median annual pay in 2020
22% increase in jobs through 2029
$110,140 median annual pay in 2020
Bureau of Labor Statistics, U.S. Department of Labor, Occupational Outlook Handbook, August 2021
The total GDP of projectized industries is estimated to increase from US$24.7 trillion in 2019 to US$34.5 trillion in 2030.
The global economy needs 25 million new project management professionals by 2030.
Globally, a gap between the demand for project management skills and the availability of talent continues to persist.
Project Management Institute
Project Management Talent Gap Report, June 2021
Boston University Metropolitan College (MET) offers competitive tuition rates that meet the needs of part-time students seeking an affordable education. These rates are substantially lower than those of the traditional, full-time residential programs yet provide access to the same high-quality BU education. To learn more about current tuition rates, visit the MET website.
Comprehensive financial assistance services are available at MET, including scholarships, graduate loans, and payment plans. There is no cost to apply for financial assistance, and you may qualify for a student loan regardless of your income. Learn more.
The Boston University Metropolitan College Master of Science in Project Management consists of 10 required online courses (40 credits). Students with PMI® certifications can earn up to 45 PDUs per course.
Students who have earned BU’s Graduate Certificate in Project Management may transfer their credits directly to the MS in Project Management, earning the master’s degree by completing just two core courses, two specialization courses, and two electives.
With appropriate advanced planning, you can use degree electives from your online master’s in Project Management to satisfy up to two required courses in an Administrative Sciences graduate certificate program—leaving only two additional courses to be completed in order to receive a graduate-level certificate.
All students must satisfy the degree core courses, specialization requirements, and electives as indicated. Degree requirements may vary for those students transferring credits from previous coursework at Boston University or receiving course waivers due to professional designations.
Degree Core Courses
(Four courses/16 credits)
METAD642 Project Management
The course explores modern project management by providing an enterprise- level, experiential view of the discipline focused on connecting projects to the organization's mission, vision, and values. The theme of the course is applying key project management tools and techniques, through case-based group work, which will help students identify, analyze, and develop practical proposals to real-world issues. Groups select, plan, report, and then present on their project's scope, schedule, cost, risk, quality, and communications elements using tools such as the WBS, network diagram, PERT estimate, Gantt chart (including the use of MS Project), risk register, and heat map. Students also gain familiarity with important new concepts in project management: Agile frameworks, actionable sustainability thinking, and Benefits Realization Management, all of which will be important for their success not only in other graduate courses, but as they lead projects for their organizations so as to provide lasting, triple-bottom-line value. The course is aligned with the latest PMBOK? Guide from the Project Management Institute. [4 credits]
METAD643 Project Communications and Leadership
This course examines the increasing importance of leadership and communications in projects. Since project outcomes and the delivery of value are accomplished through teams of people, the course aims to improve the capability of a project manager to become a project leader and to excel at motivating and inspiring their teams. Students begin by gaining a better understanding of their own social, leadership, and communications styles. Self-awareness is key to the course. We investigate motivation, conflict management, negotiation skills, and the Agile principles of stewardship and servant leadership. Grounded in the use of tools, the course will provide students with templates to enhance team collaboration and communication. The course also addresses more contemporary issues in PM, including resolving ambiguity and complexity, the use of improvised working styles, sustainable PM, and issues around power and politics within the project. [4 credits]
METAD715 Quantitative and Qualitative Decision-Making
The purpose of this course is to help improve business problem solving and managerial decision-making through the use of quantitative and qualitative decision-making tools and techniques. This course will provide the student with an overview of how decisions are made to solve management problems in the business environment. It introduces the fundamental concepts and methodologies of the decision-making process, problem-solving, decision analysis, data collection, probability distribution, evaluation, and prediction methods. Students will learn how to apply different quantitative and qualitative analytical tools commonly used in business to provide a depth of understanding and support to various decision-making activities within each subject area of management. Through the use of case studies of decisions made by managers in various production and service industries and a business simulation package specifically prepared for this course, the scope and breadth of decision-making in business will be described. [4 credits]
METAD807 Principles and Best Practices in Project, Program, and Portfolio Management
This course is one of the last courses that a student in the master's degree project management program is required to take. Students are expected to carry out independent research on a relevant topic in the area of project management under the supervision of the instructor. This course focuses on emerging trends and reviews unique methodologies and approaches to project management. Students are exposed to research methods and practice that contributes to original research in the emerging project management areas. Students are required to submit a research proposal prior to registration. Approval of the instructor is required. [4 credits]
(Four courses/16 credits)
METAD644 Project Risk and Cost Management
Prereq: MET PM100
This course introduces students to macro and micro approaches to project cost estimation. Case studies of both pre-project and in- process estimating examine some of the more common perils of human irrationality associated with project estimation to help develop more sensible, achievable project outcomes. Students learn how to manage both project cost and schedule objectives throughout their projects using the Earned Value and Earned Schedule Measurement Systems. Students then study risk management through an examination of both individual and overall project risk and apply their learnings using advanced risk management software in an actual case study. Students also study project quality management, procurement/contract management, and project ethics and professional conduct using case study scenarios. [4 credits]
METAD646 Portfolio and Program Management
Prereq PM 100, PM200
The course focuses on the relationship among portfolios, programs, and projects, and the important strategic objectives of each endeavor. The course is designed to assist students in developing a program management framework, policy, and organizational structure. Students will develop skills and techniques for chartering constituent projects, directing and managing program execution, and managing the program team and stakeholders. The global legal, economic, cultural, and political environments in which projects operate will be contrasted, and mechanisms for resolving conflicts will be addressed. [4 credits]
METAD649 Agile Project Management
Prereq: MET PM100
The course provides an understanding of how new Agile principles and practices are changing the landscape of project management. The course is designed to give project managers fresh new insight into how to successfully blend Agile and traditional project management principles and practices in the right proportions to fit any business and project situation. The course provides a deep understanding of Agile project management principles and practices in order to see them as complementary rather than competitive to traditional project management. Topics include: Agile fundamentals, principles, and practices; roots of Agile in TQM and Lean Manufacturing; adapting an Agile approach to fit a business environment; planning and managing an enterprise- level Agile transformation; scaling agile to an enterprise level using enterprise-level Agile frameworks and Agile Project Management tools. 4cr. [4 credits]
METAD782 Project Value Strategies
This course will introduce students to Project Value - - a unique perspective on classical Project Management that is focused on assuring that a project delivers value that is aligned with the mission, vision, and values of an organization. This increasingly popular framework with which to view projects and project management is derived from current research, standards, and thought leadership from PMI and other international bodies . Students will learn how to create value in projects even in today's disruptive, turbulent environment. They will learn how to apply the conceptual framework of benefits realization management (BRM) and to use tools to manage a portfolio of programs and projects strategically with an aim of sustainable project value. Value in Agile projects will be discussed. The element of the Triple Bottom Line and a focus on sustainability is part of the subject matter. Case studies and real life experiences, illustrated with guest lectures, will be intertwined with current research in project management. [4 credits]
(Two courses/8 credits)
Select two additional Administrative Sciences graduate-level courses (8 credits) with advisor’s approval. Graduate-level courses may also be selected from other Metropolitan College departments or other Boston University schools and colleges, with an advisor’s approval.
MET prioritizes the review and admission of applications submitted earlier in the rolling admission process. You are encouraged to submit your application as soon as possible and no later than the priority application deadlines for each term.
Applicants must have an earned bachelor’s degree, in any field of study, from a regionally accredited college/university (or the international equivalent) prior to enrollment at Metropolitan College. The following materials are required for a complete application:
Vijay Kanabar, PMP
Associate Professor, Computer Science and Administrative Sciences; Director, Project Management
PhD, University of Manitoba; MS, Florida Institute of Technology; MBA, Webber College; BS, University of Madras, India; PMP (Project Management Professional), Project Management Institute
Virginia A. Greiman, PMP
Assistant Professor, Administrative Sciences
JD, Suffolk University Law School; LLM, Boston University School of Law; MEd, Boston University; BS, Pennsylvania State University; PMP (Project Management Professional), Project Management Institute
MS, Purdue University; BSEE, University of Massachusetts at Amherst
PhD, Capella University; MBA, Framingham State University; BS, Suffolk University
To learn more or to contact an enrollment advisor before you get started, request information using the button below and tell us a little about yourself. Someone will be in touch to answer any questions you may have about the program and detail the next steps in earning your degree. You can also start your application or register for a course at Metropolitan College.