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Headquarters: Rapid City, South Dakota

Type: Private

Accreditation: HLC/NCACS

Base Program Cost: $21,060

Per Credit Hour: $390

Minimum Credit Hours: 54

GMAT Required: No

Minimum Time Commitment: 24 months

Online Concentrations: Accounting, Healthcare Administration, Human Resource Management, Management, International Business, Thesis Option

On Campus Requirements: No

School Site: Online MBA Overview | Tuition | Financial Aid


National American University has been providing students with a higher education since 1941 and has strived to provide the nontraditional student with flexible scheduling options. In 1996, the university became one of the first institutions to offer students the option of degree programs that could be completed 100 percent online. Currently, students can choose from associate, bachelor’s and master’s degrees in various programs pertaining to health care, accounting, business and information technology. The online MBA prepares students for business operations and multicultural diversity in a global environment.


National American University has been accredited since 1979 by the Higher Learning Commission, which began accrediting degree-granting postsecondary educational institutions within the North Central region in 1895. The Higher Learning Commission is one of two members of the North Central Association of Colleges and Schools, one of six regional institutional accreditors in the country. This association is recognized by the U.S. Department of Education as a reputable evaluator of the educational quality of postsecondary institutions. The university’s master of business administration degree programs are accredited by the International Assembly for Collegiate Business Education. This assembly accredits business programs that have met specific criteria based on the organization’s defined “Characteristics of Excellence in Business Education.”


The university offers the following MBA options:

  • Master of Business Administration (MBA): Emphasis in General Business
  • Master of Business Administration (MBA): Emphasis in Health Care Administration
  • Master of Business Administration (MBA): Emphasis in Human Resource Management
  • Master of Business Administration (MBA): Emphasis in Management
  • Master of Business Administration (MBA): Emphasis in International Business

These types of programs are purposed for those who need advanced training in various business subjects and are looking to develop relevant abilities such as critical and analytical thinking and verbal and written communication skills. NAU’s MBA programs consist of foundational and core courses that help students gain a strong understanding of business practices that are essential to operating in a global business environment. Foundational courses are offered in the areas of accounting, economics, finance, management, marketing, business statistics and research writing. These types of courses are required of those who have not previously completed equivalent undergraduate or graduate courses in these areas and cannot be used to fulfill the required number of MBA hours. Once foundational requirements are satisfied, students can enroll in core graduate courses such as Managerial Accounting; Information Systems for Strategic Advantage; Managerial Economics; Financial Management; Quantitative Methods for Management Decisions; Marketing Administration; Leading the Organization; Policy and Strategy; and Communication, Culture, and Change. In addition, students will be required to complete core courses as well as elective courses specific to their chosen emphasis.

Student Life

An online education from National American University means you will have the freedom to earn your degree on your own time. As programs are designed for the adult learner, students are given a certain amount of flexibility when it comes to when and where they can complete course work. All students need is a computer and an Internet connection to log into the student portal and take advantage of 24/7 access to classes. Although online students don’t have to attend regular classes, they will need to be aware of important dates and deadlines on the class schedule regarding when assignments are due. Students are required to log into each course at least once per week to be counted as present and participate in weekly class activities. While specific times are up to them, National American University students are expected to spend at least eight to 10 hours per course each week to complete readings and assignments.


When applying for one of National American University’s MBA programs, students will be required to submit the following:

  • A completed application form from the school
  • $45 application fee
  • An undergraduate transcript from an accredited university
  • Proof of a cumulative GPA of at least 2.75
  • English proficiency examination results (for non-English speakers)

Prospective students can begin the admissions process by filling out the application available on National American University’s website. The university has an open admissions policy, meaning that if students meet all of the minimum requirements such as having earned a bachelor’s degree from an accredited institution with a minimum GPA of at least a 2.75, they are likely to be granted admission into the school. Although National American University generally abides by this policy, it may exercise selectivity in granting admission in some programs. National American University operates on a quarter system with classes starting every 11 weeks in October, January, April and July. As the registration deadline for courses usually is one week before the class begins, students should try to apply well in advance. Students who apply too late to register for courses during one quarter should be able to apply for the next quarter.

Tuition and Financial Aid

Tuition is subject to change at any time by the university and therefore the total cost for an MBA program cannot be specified. Students are encouraged to contact NAU’s admissions office for information about current tuition and fees. According to NAU’s website, it has consistently remained one of the least expensive private universities in the U.S. and continuously strives to make education affordable to all. MBA students must satisfy 54 hours of core and elective courses, with each course being worth 4.5 credit hours. Students may be required to complete as many as 31.5 hours of foundational courses depending on previous education.

Financial aid is available to all NAU students including federal loans, grants and scholarships. MBA students can submit a FAFSA application to find out what types of federal aid they are eligible to receive. NAU offers financial assistance for students in the military and is an approved institution for military education benefits such as Armed Forces Tuition Assistance, GI Bill and Veterans Education Benefits. NAU also works with the American Council on Education to award credit for military training and experience therefore reducing the total cost of tuition for military students who may not be required to earn as many credits. NAU also accepts employer reimbursement plans.

Why National American University?

Those enrolled in NAU’s MBA programs will reap the rewards of attending a university that understands that many students need to earn an education while also fulfilling their personal and professional commitments. NAU strives to provide students with industry-relevant career programs that are taught by qualified instructors who have real-world experience. Along with a quality education, NAU tries to encourage professional growth through career services that guide students through resumes, portfolios, interview techniques, job searches and networking strategies. Its knowledgeable staff is readily available to help students through admissions and financing processes, as well as advising on programs, courses and degree completion. NAU students get to be a part of a dynamic global community of students as NAU is an affiliate partner with academic entities in other countries including Japan, Greece, Malaysia, Chile, Bolivia and India. NAU also exclusively offers the Best of Both Worlds IDP program, which gives students the opportunity to combine online courses from NAU with their local university education to earn an accredited U.S. degree.

Along with its online degree programs, NAU offers campus-based schooling opportunities at its 17 locations throughout South Dakota, Kansas, Minnesota, Colorado, Missouri, Texas and New Mexico. At these campuses, which are primarily attended by working adults, students can take classes during the day or evening. Students can also take advantage of NAU’s blended model of learning that combines on-campus classes with online courses. This hybrid program allows students to enjoy the best of both worlds, as some classes involve face-to-face instruction and others pure online convenience.

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