Ashford University’s mission is to support practical professional education through personal development and exploration, and consequently, the online master’s of business administration in finance program is designed to help students learn to apply their education responsibly and effectively throughout their careers. The finance program is intended to prepare students for all types of finance careers through courses such as Financial Investment Management, Corporate Managerial Finance, and a Finance Capstone Seminar, in addition to taking required courses in various aspects of marketing, organization, leadership, accounting, operations, and finance law. Though not mandatory, students are always encouraged to participate in relevant corporate work, whether as full-time or part-time employees or interns, in order to enhance their education and resume.
An online MBA in finance is one of the more common specializations you can choose from out of the many concentrations available for MBA degree programs. This graduate program is designed to prepare students for careers in the financial sector, while giving them a thorough education in business administration.
What Does an MBA in Finance Cover?
An online Finance MBA is a challenging graduate program that typically takes two years of full-time study to complete. Some online MBA finance programs are set up to take less time or are accelerated to help students finish their degree more quickly. Students who did not major in business for their undergraduate degree usually must start out taking introductory courses and prerequisites that introduce them to the graduate program while those who earned a bachelor’s degree in business can launch right into their core courses. These are designed to give students a comprehensive education in business administration and include classes in management, financial accounting, marketing management, business communication, organizational leadership, statistical data analysis, and business law and ethics. Student must also complete three to five classes directly related to finance to fulfill the specialization requirement. These courses might include: corporate finance, capital markets theory and practice, investment theory and applications, and computational finance. Students completing their MBA in finance round out their studies with open electives related to business administration or finance. In between their first and second years, students completing their Finance MBA online are encouraged or required to undertake an internship. Finally, the highlight of many online Finance MBA programs is a capstone project during which students apply what they have learned in the classroom to a real-world problem. Quantitative research is often an important component of this final project.
Getting Into a Finance MBA Program
Students interested in enrolling in an online Finance MBA program will need to first have a bachelor’s degree from an accredited institution. The degree does not need to be in business, though having taken courses in business foundations, law and finance can increase a student’s chances of being admitted. Most schools require that students have an undergraduate GPA of 2.0 or higher, though some schools may have tougher requirements. Applicants should also be prepared to submit the following documents along with their completed application:
- college transcript
- proof of GMAT scores
- resume detailing work experience
- essays following provided prompt
- letter of program intent
Some schools, such as American InterContinental University, do not require these additional documents, but universities differ in their application requirements.
Why Should I Get an AACSB Accredited Finance MBA?
Make sure the business school you select is accredited by the Association to Advance Collegiate Schools of Business. The AACSB is a nonprofit membership organization dedicated to advancing quality management education and serves as an accreditor for undergraduate, master’s and doctoral programs in business and accounting. With accreditation from the AACSB, you will know that you have chosen a reputable MBA program that will challenge you and you will earn a degree that is respected in the job market.
Who Should Pursue an Online Finance MBA?
People who stand to benefit from completing an online Finance MBA program include those who are already employed in business and those who want to transition into it from another occupation. The courses, projects and internships built into an online Finance MBA degree program will give people the skills and education they need to advance to mid- and top-level management positions. Although this is a specialized degree preparing students for careers or advancements in the financial sector, it is versatile enough to help you land careers in other areas, such as marketing and operations management.
What Jobs Can an Online Finance MBA Get Me?
- Financial Manager: These professionals are responsible for supervising and handling the financial activities of a business or organization. They prepare financial reports, oversee investments and devise strategies for cash management. They also develop methods to save money and ways to put current assets to better use. These managers are often responsible for creating financial blueprints of an organization and explaining data to managers in other departments. Under the umbrella of financial managers are the positions of controllers, treasurers and credit and cash managers.
- Stockbroker: These professionals are responsible for investing in the stock market in the name of individuals or organizations. Stockbrokers advise clients on investment decisions. They may have clients who want to invest a small amount in a stable company and watch their investment grow over time, or they may have some with huge amounts of investment capital who are looking to make a profit as soon as possible. Stockbrokers must have an in-depth understanding of the way the financial markets work so they can help their clients make sound investment decisions.
- Claims Adjuster: These professionals work for insurance companies and are responsible for investigating claims. The adjustor is charged with determining the cause of the claim, whether it is covered by the policy and the value of the loss. They interview the claimant and any witnesses, review property damage, and consult hospital and police records. Claims adjusters then negotiate settlements with customers and authorize payment amounts. Claims adjusters sometimes consult with architects, engineers, lawyers and doctors to gather expert opinions to help with decisions.
Top Earning Industries for Jobs
- Information Technology Services: $76,000-$142,000
- Manufacturing and Distribution: $58,958-$105,142
- Banking: $40,288-$91,563
- Online Brokerage: $37,103-$54,250
- Commercial Insurance: $44,561-$69,555
- Insurance Carrier: $43,324- $57,853
How Do I Find Online Finance MBA Programs?
The best place to begin your search for online MBA programs in finance is the AACSB website. Rest your cursor over the “accreditation” tab and click on “accredited institutions” to see a list of such schools worldwide. For rankings, check out:
- U.S. News & World Report
- Bloomberg Businessweek
- Financial Times
- The Economist
Another useful resource is the Online Education Database, which ranks online colleges using metrics such as graduation and retention rates and student-to-teacher ratio.