A Master of Business Administration (MBA) program is a graduate-level program that prepares students for leadership roles in business and industry. Featuring courses in accounting, finance, organizational behavior, business strategy, and corporate accountability, the MBA delivers cross-functional knowledge and training. Well-versed in all facets of business, MBA graduates can leverage their education for career advancement.
Many prospective students put off earning their master's degree to fulfill family and career obligations. Earning an MBA online provides students with flexibility, allowing them to fulfill other responsibilities while earning their degree. Online MBA programs follow the same curriculum as on-campus programs, but allow students to complete work at their own pace. With new accredited online MBA programs being introduced every year, there has never been a better time to earn an MBA online.
Well-versed in all facets of business, MBA graduates can leverage their education for career advancement.
Top Online MBA Program Rankings
To aid students in their search for a top online MBA program, the education experts at OnlineMBA.com publish their annual findings of the best online MBA programs in the country! Schools featured on our list have excelled in bringing their MBA programs online, fostering success for distance learners and non-traditional students.
To create our ranking, we compare program characteristics from schools offering an MBA online including student resources, tuition costs, job placement rates, instructional technologies and more. We then measure this information based on three weighted categories: student success, quality of instruction, and affordability. Each school on our list is institutionally and programmatically accredited, so as to ensure that the content and delivery of the program meets accepted academic and professional standards.
Top 10 Online MBA Programs
- University of Florida - $48,000
- University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill - $114,078
- Johns Hopkins University - $71,820
- Carnegie Mellon University -$115,000
- George Washington University - $97,957
- University of Virginia -$130,000
- University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign - $21,844
- University of Southern California - $95,603
- Villanova University - $64,800
- Babson College - $87,025
|Rank||School||Location||Cost||Toggle||Logo||Tuition||% Receiving Financial Aid||Student Population||School Type||Description|
University of Florida
|Location Gainesville , FL||Tuition $$$$$||% Receiving Financial Aid 32||Student Population 50,645||Tuition $48,000||School Type Public||
The University of Florida has offered online education since 1999, and the school has perfected its distance programs to provide students with a varied selection of options, including an online MBA degree available in three distinct formats: fully online, one-year hybrid, or two-year hybrid. Each program track stresses advanced and fundamental business skills that allow students to progress within their current career or on a new professional path.
UF’s MBA online is designed to offer maximum flexibility with minimal interruption to students’ professional lives. The program’s primarily asynchronous format allows online learners to view lectures at any time and complete most other assignments, including readings and group projects, as their schedules permit. Students typically spend about 15 hours each week on coursework. The degree itself takes about 24 months complete and requires no campus visits. The online curriculum follows the same schedule as the UF campus calendar, but courses use a convenient five-week block format that allows students to earn credits quickly and lighten their course load as needed.
The one-year hybrid MBA is an accelerated program that is 16 months long. This degree is designed for students with an academic business background who have earned their undergraduate degree within the past seven years. The program curriculum forgoes basic business topics, such as marketing, management, and economics, allowing students to earn the degree quickly. Requiring 36 total credits, the one-year hybrid program includes primarily online coursework along with required weekend residencies held every four months. These weekend sessions are typically held at the end of academic semesters, allowing online learners to meet with peers and faculty, take final exams, and reflect on past work.
The hybrid two-year degree is available to students who lack an academic business background or have been in the workforce for seven or more years. Requiring 48 total credits, this format also includes weekend residencies and allows degree candidates to choose from four focus areas: entrepreneurship, international business, finance, and marketing.
John Gresley, Assistant Dean and Director of UF MBA Programs
"UF MBA is a pioneer in the online education industry, beginning in 1999 as one of the first institutions to offer this program format. Students complete comparable coursework and graduate with the same degree as our other programs. UF MBA provides great flexibility and a suite of formats designed with students in mind. For students looking for classroom experience and personal networking opportunities within the cohort, there is a program with a mandatory trip to Gainesville once per term. Additionally, building on the success of the online program, UF MBA is now offering a fully online MBA program that does not require a single campus visit for students who want the value of a rigorous, high quality academic experience without any of the travel or fixed time commitments."
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University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill
|Location Chapel Hill , NC||Tuition $$$$$||% Receiving Financial Aid 32||Student Population 29,084||Tuition $114,078||School Type Public||
One of the oldest public colleges in the United States, UNC is also home to one of the country’s top online MBA programs, a highly flexible degree that combines asynchronous coursework with live virtual meetings. Classes maintain a student-faculty ratio of 15:1, giving degree candidates unparalleled access to professors who are top researchers and consultants in the business world. While courses are conducted online, MBA candidates can also participate in immersion experiences, which provide in-person learning opportunities both at the UNC campus and in cities around the world. On-campus immersion sessions allow students to network with peers and faculty, participate in leadership development activities, and explore Chapel Hill. Off-campus immersions offer a glimpse into the world of national and international business in global hubs, such as New York, Shanghai, or London.
Students pursuing the UNC online MBA have 5 concentration options: finance, data analytics and decision making, entrepreneurship, marketing, and strategy and consulting. The degree requires 66 total credits, including 36 credits of core business courses that build skills in fundamental topics, such as marketing strategy, business communications, leadership, and operations management. Elective courses comprise an additional 30 credits, with suggested course sequences that allow students to pursue a concentration that matches their professional interests. The school offers dozens of elective options that vary between terms, including digital marketing, new ventures discovery, mergers and acquisitions, and leading from the middle.
Johns Hopkins University
|Location Baltimore , MD||Tuition $$$$$||% Receiving Financial Aid 39||Student Population 22,686||Tuition $71,820||School Type Private||
Based in Baltimore, Maryland, Johns Hopkins is one of the country’s most prestigious research colleges. The school’s flex MBA program offers both online and hybrid formats to accommodate the schedules of professional students. Degree candidates in both the online and hybrid programs can choose from three concentration options: financial businesses, healthcare management, and leading organizations.
The MBA curriculum includes 54 total credits, with 30 credits allocated to core business courses and 24 credits allocated to elective or concentration courses. Most online courses feature both asynchronous and synchronous components, combining scheduled virtual class meetings with online coursework that can be completed at any time throughout the week. Students in the hybrid program choose from campus courses that meet once per week, either in the evenings or on weekends. Both online and on-campus courses follow the same eight-week course format. While Hopkins does offer most courses online, some electives may only be available on campus, and three foundational courses require short campus residency sessions in either Baltimore or Washington, D.C.: business communications, leadership in organizations, and negotiations. The business communications and leadership courses require three-day sessions, while the negotiations course requires a one and a half-day session. Most students graduate in around two and a half years, though the college allows up to six years to complete the program.
Hopkins’ online MBA degree students receive full access to the school’s academic and professional resources, including academic advising, library services, student services, technology support, and career development. The school’s career development office offers support for both current students and graduates, including networking opportunities, resume and cover letter assistance, job search management, interview training, and career transition guidance. Hopkins reports that within six months of graduation, 93% of MBA graduates find full-time employment or internship positions, pursue further education, or start their own business. Nearly half of all students move into consulting positions, though the pharmaceutical, biotechnology, and healthcare industries are also popular professional choices.
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Carnegie Mellon University
|Location Pittsburgh , PA||Tuition $$$$$||% Receiving Financial Aid 38||Student Population 12,963||Tuition $115,000||School Type Private||
Founded by industrial magnate Andrew Carnegie, it’s no surprise CMU hosts a strong business program that is one of the top online MBA degrees in the nation. Offered through the prestigious Tepper School of Business, CMU’s online MBA degree is a unique hybrid program based around principles of strategic analysis and leadership development. The curriculum includes a mixture of synchronous and asynchronous course materials; students attend two virtual class meetings each week, held in the evenings and taught by the same professors who conduct the on-campus courses. The rest of the week is dedicated to asynchronous online coursework, such as pre-recorded lectures and assignments.
CMU offers several specialization options that allow students to develop and refine their professional focus, in the form of both concentrations and tracks. Concentrations are automatically awarded after candidates complete three or more elective courses in a subject area, such as communications, organizational behavior, or marketing. The MBA curriculum requires at least one concentration, but most students earn three or four. Professional tracks are more specialized, encompassing eight to 10 electives and a capstone course. CMU offers five unique options, preparing students for specialized work in particular fields or career paths after graduation: business analytics, energy business, entrepreneurship, management of innovation and product development, or technology leadership. Students who choose not to pursue a professional track still complete one of the program’s capstone experiences, which includes study abroad options or business simulation exercises.
While most coursework is held online, CMU also hosts in-person “access weekends” six times each year in Pittsburgh, Philadelphia, Washington, D.C., and Silicon Valley. These required immersion sessions occur in between each mini-semester, giving students the opportunity to meet with faculty and peers and develop professional connections outside of online courses. Access weekends serve as the starting point for new classes, allowing online learners to build deeper connections to classmates through face-to-face interactions. Students also participate in workshops, meet CMU alumni, and gain firsthand knowledge of advanced business practices through visits to partner companies.
George Washington University
|Location Washington , DC||Tuition $$$$$||% Receiving Financial Aid 40||Student Population 26,212||Tuition $97,957||School Type Private||
Based in Washington, D.C., GWU offers students unique opportunities at the intersection of government and business. While the school’s MBA is available entirely online, students have the option to attend a four-day residency in D.C., participating in face-to-face learning activities and gaining firsthand experience though the observation of local businesses and government organizations, such as the Federal Reserve and the World Bank. GWU’s online MBA degree combines business theory and analytical skills with a global, ethical focus, training candidates to develop both business organizations and society at large.
This 55.5-credit degree includes six concentration options and allows students to choose up to two: consulting, finance, global management, government contracts, information systems and technology management, or project management. GWU also allows degree candidates to create their own focus through a customized selection of elective courses. The degree takes around three years to complete, with students typically taking six credits per semester. The first two years are dedicated to foundational and advanced business fundamentals courses, while the third year consists of mostly concentration elective courses. The program combines synchronous and asynchronous learning, with one live virtual classroom session held weekly for each course. These live sessions take place on evenings or weekends and include lectures, group activities, and case discussions, allowing students and faculty to collaborate. Asynchronous course content includes videos, podcasts, animations, traditional readings, and other material that students complete on their own schedules.
Along with the traditional MBA, GWU also offers a fully online healthcare MBA that explores business and leadership approaches to healthcare, combining knowledge in medicine, health sciences, nursing, public health, law, international affairs, and business. This highly customizable degree draws students from both the business and health fields, and the program’s design accommodates all levels of healthcare experience. As part of the curriculum, candidates can earn one of seven professional graduate certificates: healthcare quality, health sciences, regulatory affairs, integrative medicine, clinical research administration, clinical research practice, and clinical and translational research.
University of Virginia
|Location Charlottesville , VA||Tuition $$$$$||% Receiving Financial Aid 28||Student Population 23,883||Tuition $130,000||School Type Public||
A major public research college based in Charlottesville, UVA also maintains a satellite business school in Washington, D.C. The school’s MBA online programs include an executive MBA and a global executive MBA, both available in a hybrid delivery format that offers about one-third of the core program curriculum online. Both degrees emphasize business and leadership skills in a global environment, though the global MBA requires longer, more intensive residency sessions. The two formats are highly integrated, sharing about 70% of the same course material.
UVA forgoes a lecture-based educational approach in favor of the case method, which focuses on the discussion and debate of real and simulated business problems. From the beginning of the program, students are assigned to learning teams based on background, experience, and professional interests, ensuring a mix of diverse viewpoints. These teams participate in regular virtual meetings outside of class to prepare for case discussions and complete additional group work. Courses themselves typically require two synchronous virtual meetings each week.
The most notable difference between UVA’s two online MBA programs concerns the required residency sessions, as the global MBA requires students to attend four weeklong residencies around the world, while the executive MBA requires just one global residency. These sessions give students a deeper perspective on international business through experiential learning activities in global hubs, such as Sao Paulo, Beijing, Paris, Berlin, and Mumbai. Participants attend classes, visit prominent companies, and gain hands-on experience in cross-cultural business relations.
Students in the executive MBA track choose one global residency experience and attend shorter weekend residency sessions at the school’s campuses in Charlottesville or Washington, D.C. These events offer a variety of face-to-face learning experiences, including classroom sessions, case discussions, business simulations, and presentations. Requiring just two or three days for each session, the executive MBA’s weekend residencies are useful for students who need more flexibility in their course scheduling. Regardless of track, two week-long leadership residency sessions on the Charlottesville campus bookend the program, bringing candidates together to reflect on leadership strategies and overall learning.
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University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign
|Location Champaign , IL||Tuition $$$$$||% Receiving Financial Aid 39||Student Population 45,842||Tuition $21,844||School Type Public||
The flagship institution of the University of Illinois System, the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign a major public research college that is home to over 47,000 students, making it one of the largest universities in the Midwest. The school is also home to Gies College of Business, which offers one of the best online MBA programs in the nation, its iMBA. The program has won praise for both its affordability and the quality of its instruction. The degree is available fully online, with no residency or travel requirements, allowing students to save even further. Stressing both business mastery and leadership skills, the iMBA is a globally-focused degree that brings together working professionals from more than 40 countries around the world, encouraging students to develop versatile approaches to business. This highly flexible program allows degree candidates to set their own pace, typically completing all courses within 24-36 months.
Illinois divides the core curriculum into four specialization areas, reflecting the practical knowledge required of business leaders: strategic leadership and management, managerial economics and business analysis, value chain management, and financial management. Each specialization component includes three courses and a capstone project that synthesizes subject knowledge. Along with specializations, candidates select two focus areas that cover advanced topics, including innovation, digital marketing, and global challenges in business. In addition to the specialization capstones, students also complete a final summative capstone project that integrates overall program learning.
Illinois’ iMBA offers multiple pathways to enrollment outside of the traditional application. Prospective students who are interested in sampling the curriculum and online learning format can enroll in one of two non-credit options without enrolling in the program itself. The school also allows applicants to enroll in a for-credit course before beginning the MBA. This option is ideal for students who have been out of school for some time and want to re-acclimate themselves to academic work before beginning their degree. It’s a practical choice for applicants who want to build a stronger academic record before applying to the program.
What makes Illinois’ iMBA stand out is its high quality of content, its extremely low cost, and its flexibility. The course material is structured the way students will use it in today’s business world. The program is geared to develop leaders with future-forward vision. Called a “breakthrough” by Poets & Quants, the iMBA offers real-world insights from around the globe, as well as from senior professors and special practitioner faculty from companies such as Google. Students emerge from the iMBA program ready to execute, manage, and lead, with advanced training in how to innovate, shape the digital world, and go global.
University of Southern California
|Location Los Angeles , CA||Tuition $$$$$||% Receiving Financial Aid 37||Student Population 43,401||Tuition $95,603||School Type Private||
Founded in 1880 in Los Angeles, USC is the oldest private research college in California. The school has a reputation for educating business leaders, so it’s natural that USC hosts one of the country’s best online MBA programs, with a forward-thinking curriculum designed specifically for distance learners. USC’s Online MBA degree operates in a cohort format, in which students form a close-knit peer group that works together throughout the course of the program to complete the same sequence of classes.
The program begins with a weeklong residency at the USC campus in Los Angeles, allowing students and faculty to build connections face-to-face. The residency includes collaborative classroom activities, a consulting project competition, and opportunities to socialize and network with classmates, faculty, alumni, and business leaders. During the residency, students complete an introductory three-credit course on the role of the manager, which emphasizes strategic and managerial frameworks along with the fundamental processes of communication and leadership.
The remainder of the curriculum consists of five longer courses focused on core subject areas: fundamentals of business, opportunity recognition and implementation, managing inside the firm, managing outside the firm, and business environment and leadership. Each course is worth about 10 units and lasts 16 weeks. USC’s online courses use both synchronous components, such as scheduled virtual class meetings and collaborative group work, and asynchronous activities, such as video presentations and class discussion boards. Synchronous meetings occur two times per week and typically last two hours.
Online MBA students receive dedicated support from professional career consultants who can assist professionals at all stages of their careers with coaching and planning. Networking opportunities include events sponsored by the USC Marshall Alumni Association (which boasts more than 87,000 members worldwide), online business leader guest speakers that directly connect students to industry executives, and invitations to Online MBA program events to meet new OMBA students and re-connect with alumni and faculty.
Students in the Online MBA program may also apply to a USC dual-degree or certificate program. Most of these take place on the USC campus, but some can be completed online such as the MBA/MS in Systems Architecting & Engineering degree and graduate certificate in Global Supply Chain Management. After graduating, Online MBA students are eligible to continue their studies by taking Marshall MBA elective courses; some of which are online or include an international experience.View School Profile
|Location Villanova , PA||Tuition $$$$$||% Receiving Financial Aid 43||Student Population 10,711||Tuition $64,800||School Type Private||
Located just outside of Philadelphia, Villanova was founded in 1842, making it the oldest Catholic college in Pennsylvania. Today the school is known as one of the country’s top colleges, and it’s also home to one of the best online MBA degrees in the state. Villanova’s MBA online comprises 48 credits, including functional core courses and four “pillar” courses that cover information technology as strategic level, ethical business practices, management and innovation for creativity, and global political economy. Students can also choose to pursue specialization options in finance, analytics, marketing, or strategic management. While not required, these specializations are indicated on final transcripts and automatically awarded to candidates who earn 7.5 or more elective credits in a subject area. Villanova also offers some independent study options for students whose interests fall outside of the available elective courses. Online courses mix synchronous and asynchronous content, including virtual class sessions, interactive case studies, discussion boards, and video lectures. For students who reside in the Philadelphia area, the school also offers hybrid options that include some on-campus courses.
Villanova stresses the application of business theory to practice, and the program curriculum offers several opportunities to gain hands-on business experience through face-to-face practicum activities. During the first or second semester, students participate in a leadership challenge during a short on-campus residency session that also offers opportunities to connect with peers and faculty. Midway through the degree, the MBA program hosts the social enterprise consulting practicum, a team-based activity in which students act as consultants to a community organization.
The MBA culminates with a global strategic management capstone course, which includes an optional weeklong international immersion experience. The course itself explores current business issues facing global organizations, while the immersion experiences gives candidates the opportunity to travel to a developing economy and observe international business firsthand. Villanova recommends the immersion for all students able to attend, as it offers a chance to visit international companies and work on advanced group projects. Those unable to travel abroad can attend a domestic immersion experience that offers many of the same opportunities.
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|Location Wellesley , MA||Tuition $$$$$||% Receiving Financial Aid 37||Student Population 3,057||Tuition $87,025||School Type Private||
A private business college in Wellesley, Massachusetts, Babson holds a reputation as one of the top business schools in the country. The college’s primary focus is on entrepreneurial thought and action, and all students gain in-depth knowledge of business fundamentals along with the skills to create economic and social equity. Babson also emphasizes the application of business principles to all aspects of public life, highlighting the connection between entrepreneurship and community building. Given its impeccable business credentials, it should come as no surprise that the school offers one of the top online MBA degrees in the country, with a rigorous, action-based curriculum rooted in concepts of entrepreneurship and value creation.
Typically taking about 21 months to complete, this blended MBA combines primarily online coursework with weekend on-campus sessions held once every seven weeks—available in Wellesley as well as Miami and San Francisco. The program uses a cohort model, which divides students into small groups that complete most coursework in the same sequence. The cohort format encourages close peer connections and facilitates opportunities for students to learn from one another’s experience. Online learners dedicate about 20 hours per week to classes, which include asynchronous and real-time components, such as live discussions, group projects, case studies, and readings. The degree requires 46 total credits and includes both core courses and 12 credits of specialized electives. Candidates have the option to choose from five concentration options: business analytics, entrepreneurship, finance, global management, or marketing.
Another important part of Babson’s MBA online is the school’s “Signature Learning Experiences”, which are unique projects and activities that occur throughout the program and encourage students to apply their business studies to entrepreneurial decision-making processes. In disruptive change and enterprise transformation, for example, students attend a three and a half day on-campus residency to explore strategies that address shifts in consumer behavior, with a focus on the media, energy, and life science industries.
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University of Maryland
|Location College Park , MD||Tuition $$$$$||% Receiving Financial Aid 35||Student Population 38,140||Tuition $83,970||School Type Public||
The flagship institution of the University System of Maryland, UMD is a major public research college with a student body of more than 39,000. The school’s proximity to Washington, D.C. places it in an active corridor of business and politics, making it a popular choice for professionals pursuing an MBA online. UMD’s MBA program offers specializations in accounting, finance, information systems and business analytics, marketing, supply chain management, or a generalist track. The 54-credit curriculum begins with core courses that introduce business fundamentals, such as managerial economics and public policy, leadership and teamwork, financial accounting, and strategic management. Elective courses allow students to fulfill specialization requirements or pursue their own professional interests.
UMD emphasizes experiential learning, and online degree candidates have several opportunities to apply their course learning to hands-on work with real businesses both domestic and abroad. The school hosts multiple MBA residency sessions on campus, which allow for visits to local businesses and other organizations. Two campus residency sessions bookend the program, each worth two credits. The introductory residency, fundamentals of business, outlines core program topics and allows online learners to build face-to-face connections with classmates and faculty members. The capstone residency, an integrative business simulation, requires students to synthesize major program topics and apply them to a sophisticated simulation activity that models real business problems. Throughout the program, candidates can participate in other action learning projects that build practical experience in consulting, social venture, investing, international business, and entrepreneurship. These action learning experiences may take place on the UMD campus or within students’ own communities or workplaces.
Online learners benefit from UMD’s expansive career services resources, receiving support throughout the program and after graduation, with access to career coaching, peer mentoring, internship opportunities, resume and cover letter help, and interview training. UMD also provides substantial networking opportunities, both through campus residencies and a substantial alumni network of more than 60,000 professionals.
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University of California - Los Angeles
|Location Los Angeles , CA||Tuition $$$$$||% Receiving Financial Aid 33||Student Population 41,908||Tuition $122,400||School Type Public||
One of the top schools on the West Coast, UCLA is also home to the Anderson School of Management, one of the country’s most respected business colleges. The school’s flex MBA for fully employed students is a hybrid program that includes both online coursework and short campus visits. The degree typically takes three years to complete, though candidates may take extra electives to complete all coursework in 27 months.
Most program components take place online, but students must visit the UCLA campus for immersion sessions that take place four weekends each semester (once every three weeks). Lasting from Saturday afternoon through Sunday afternoon, immersion sessions make it possible for students outside the Los Angeles area to visit campus and return home easily in between work weeks. Along with immersion weekends, online learners are required to participate in an introductory leadership foundations course, which kicks off the program at the end of August. This provides opportunities for students to explore fundamental program goals and meet with peers and faculty.
Outside of campus learning, online learners participate in a variety of synchronous and asynchronous activities, including video lectures, interactive group projects, and other web-based assignments. UCLA’s online MBA degree offers several specialization options, including technology leadership, entertainment management, global management, leaders in sustainability, and social impact. While many required specialization electives are hosted online or in a hybrid format, some may only be available through on-campus courses.
One of the most notable features of UCLA’s MBA is the capstone project, which takes the form of either a global access program or a business creation option. Creating opportunities for hands-on learning in the business world, these culminating activities take place during the final year of the program and require students to apply their knowledge to genuine business practice. In the global access program, candidates serve as global consultants for an international business, while the business creation option has candidates work together as a team to launch a new business venture.View School Profile
|Location Saint Louis , MO||Tuition $$$$$||% Receiving Financial Aid 65||Student Population 15,256||Tuition $28,080||School Type Private||
Though it’s based in Webster Groves, Missouri, Webster is a national and international institution, with locations across the United States and around the world. Webster operates in more than a dozen U.S. states, including California, Colorado, Illinois, Texas, and Virginia; the school’s international locations include China, Thailand, Switzerland, and England. Many of the college’s satellite campuses are located on U.S. military bases, and Webster’s MBA programs online are designed to accommodate working students’ schedules. For those interested in combining business skills with other disciplines, the school also offers two dual-degree MBA programs in health administration or management and leadership.
Available in both hybrid and fully online formats, the Webster MBA emphasizes flexibility and customization through more than a dozen optional concentration areas, including cybersecurity, environmental management, gerontology, and media communications. The general MBA requires 36 total credits and includes 30 credits of core business courses along with six credits of electives. Concentration tracks include the 30-credit core curriculum along with additional elective credits, with requirements varying widely between degrees. For example, an international business concentration requires 61 total credits, while a concentration in health administration requires just 39 credits. Not all electives are available fully online, and students seeking a concentration should consult with the college to determine required course availability.
Students who live near a Webster campus can take advantage of the school’s hybrid course options, which combine online coursework with some on-campus meetings. Degree candidates with scheduling availability may also take entire courses on campus while remaining enrolled as online learners. For those able to travel internationally, Webster offers several global hybrid courses, which include eight weeks of online coursework and one week of immersive travel learning. These courses typically take place in the summer and spring, giving online learners the chance to work together with classmates and observe international business practices firsthand. Past travel destinations have included China, Greece, Costa Rica, the United Kingdom, and Germany.
University of Washington
|Location Seattle , WA||Tuition $$$$$||% Receiving Financial Aid 28||Student Population 45,408||Tuition $65,000||School Type Public||
One of the top colleges in the Pacific Northwest, UW is home to the prestigious Foster School of Business, which serves more than 2,500 students at the graduate and undergraduate levels. UW’s online MBA degree uses a hybrid format that features mostly online courses, punctuated with quarterly campus immersion sessions lasting three to five days. In total, the program curriculum consists of about 95% online material, with just 5% dedicated to on-campus meetings. Designed to accommodate working students, the program takes two years to complete, with no classes held in the summer.
Online courses are primarily asynchronous, with guided independent work that students complete at their own pace. Online coursework components include interactive discussion boards, streaming lectures, virtual team business simulations, podcasts, and active learning assessments. The program requires one weekly virtual class meeting, held on Tuesday evenings and typically lasting 60-90 minutes. These live sessions allow for interactions with classmates and faculty, mirroring face-to-face classroom meetings. Students can also participate in optional review sessions held on Thursdays. Campus immersion sessions offer opportunities for classroom learning and discussion, along with networking and social events. Students also explore the unique business culture of the Pacific Northwest through lectures and other events featuring industry leaders.
The degree requires a total of 62 credits, including 52 credits of core business courses and 10 elective credits. The first-year curriculum introduces business fundamentals, with courses in decision modeling, data analysis, and global strategy. During the second year, students complete core coursework, choose electives, and participate in other unique MBA curriculum components, including the program capstone and an optional international study tour that offers hands-on experience with global businesses. UW’s business electives function uniquely; students fill out interest surveys each quarter, and electives are organized and offered based on the results of these surveys. Common subject areas include marketing, leadership, finance, and entrepreneurship. Due to the unique nature of the elective system, most courses are only offered once per year.View School Profile
|Location Malibu , CA||Tuition $$$$$||% Receiving Financial Aid 44||Student Population 7,632||Tuition $89,180||School Type Private||
Located in Malibu, California, Pepperdine is private research college associated with the Church of Christ. The school is home to an MBA program online, a degree that explores the effects of globalization, technology, competition, and ethics on modern business. The Pepperdine Graziadio Business School offers both a fully online program and a hybrid degree that features a mix of online learning and weekend on-campus courses.
The Pepperdine Graziadio Online MBA online requires 52 total credits, consisting of 40 core credits and 12 elective credits. Fully online students can choose from four elective concentrations: finance, leadership management and organizational change, marketing, and general management. The finance track builds deeper knowledge in financial analysis and organization, including topics in investment banking, portfolio management, and financial risk management. The leadership track challenges students to develop their own system of business ethics and values, emphasizing effective management and organizational dynamics. The marketing specialization explores the tools and techniques of marketing strategies and programs, including promotions, pricing, and consumer analysis. The general management concentration is a customizable specialization that allows students to select any electives relevant to their professional interests. The management track requires only seven elective credits, allowing for a slightly faster degree completion time. (Students in the other three concentrations typically take an additional trimester to graduate.)
While MBA candidates can complete their degree fully online with no on-campus courses, those who reside in California or have the ability to travel may be interested in the school’s flexible hybrid MBA, which divides its curriculum evenly between online and on-campus courses. This degree features most of the same coursework, but allows candidates to benefit from a classroom environment and other unique opportunities, such as a global business study experience. Students can choose to complete this two-credit experiential course in several different formats, including a one-week intensive course held abroad, a one-week residential business seminar on the Pepperdine campus, or longer study abroad opportunities held at partner schools.
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Touro University Worldwide
|Location Los Alamitos , CA||Tuition $$$$$||% Receiving Financial Aid 13||Student Population 880||Tuition $18,000||School Type Private||
Touro University Worldwide (TUW) is a non-profit university, accredited by the WASC Senior College and University Commission, and is part of the Touro College and University System. For current business professionals or those looking to make a career change, TUW offers a highly flexible, fully online MBA with six start dates throughout the year. The program trains professional students to move into elevated leadership positions, covering theories, models, and research studies applicable to business and other organizations. TUW is particularly attuned to the needs of working students, and the MBA program allows students to control the pace and organization of their online learning. Degree candidates can fit courses around their work schedules, or choose an accelerated format that allows for graduation in just one year. Offering a competitive tuition rate that’s far below most MBA programs online, TUW also demonstrates its commitment to student affordability through its waiver of all application fees. Admission to the program is open to students with or without an academic business background.
Totaling 36 credits, the MBA curriculum includes nine core business courses and three concentration courses that build deeper knowledge in a professional subject area. Core courses cover foundational business topics, such as professional communications, management across cultures, and contemporary marketing. TUW offers nine concentration options, all available fully online: accounting, cybersecurity management, finance, global management, health administration management, human resources management, marketing, and nonprofit management. Most courses use a fully asynchronous format that allows students to complete work outside of a set schedule, though assignments still have weekly deadlines. TUW’s MBA online curriculum culminates in a capstone course during the final semester. This course requires students to reflect on their prior learning and synthesize different program concepts in application to a real business problem.
|Location Bethlehem , PA||Tuition $$$$$||% Receiving Financial Aid 44||Student Population 7,054||Tuition $38,700||School Type Private||
Based in Bethlehem, Pennsylvania (about an hour north of Philadelphia) Lehigh is one of the top private colleges in the Northeast, serving around 7,000 students annually. The school is also home to one of country’s best part-time online MBA degrees, a versatile program that emphasizes five core principles: structures and unstructured decision-making, leadership, ethics and social responsibility, inclusive communication, and a deep understanding of domestic and global business. The Flex MBA offers both online and hybrid options, making the degree an ideal choice for working students who want to pursue an education without interrupting a career. Lehigh emphasizes student choice, with several paths for completing the program. Candidates can choose an accelerated format that combines online and on-campus courses, allowing them to graduate in 16 months. Alternately, students with significant work or home obligations can earn their degree at a relaxed pace, taking up to six years to complete the program. The program offers multiple start dates in January, May, and August.
Lehigh’s online MBA degree requires 36 total credits, with a 21-credit business core and 15 additional credits of electives. While the program is primarily online, Lehigh requires students to attend a two-day on-campus orientation session before beginning classes. The core curriculum covers the principles of management, including financial and physical resources, products and services, information, and organizational environments. Elective courses allow candidates to strengthen various subject areas, and concentration options include corporate entrepreneurship, finance, international business, marketing, project management, and supply chain management. Concentration tracks include both required courses and elective options that allow students to explore specialized topics in the field. Selecting a concentration is not required, and online learners may fulfill elective credits with any selection of courses that matches their professional interests. The program culminates with an integrative experience that combines core learning principles to explore strategic management solutions. Students perform in-depth case analyses and complete a comprehensive business simulation that mimics real business problems.
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|Location Denver , CO||Tuition $$$$$||% Receiving Financial Aid 56||Student Population 8,725||Tuition $34,200||School Type Private||
A private Jesuit college based in Denver, Colorado, Regis is home to one of the top online MBA programs in the western United States. The school takes a holistic approach to business studies, giving students a wide-ranging perspective on organizational resources and capabilities, consumer needs and desires, and the impact of business decisions on society at large. The program also situates business in the context of Jesuit ethics, encouraging students to develop their own ethical framework. Regis holds courses in accelerated eight-week blocks, allowing online learners to pursue their studies part-time while still maintaining a career. The college offers eight start dates throughout the year, allowing degree candidates to enter the program when it’s convenient for them. Regis emphasizes the practical application of a business mindset, and students are encouraged and required to draw connections between coursework and their own careers.
Regis’ MBA online curriculum requires 36 total credits, including 30 core business credits and six elective credits. Core courses cover major topics in business management, such as entrepreneurial innovation, managerial economics, and foundations of organizational behavior, while electives allow candidates to pursue specialized knowledge in different business areas. Regis also offers five optional specializations in accounting, finance, health industry leadership, marketing, and strategic management. Going beyond general elective requirements, these specialization tracks build advanced skills and require 12 credits of coursework, increasing the graduation requirement to 42 credits. Students may also choose to take specialization courses beyond the 42-credit minimum.
While admissions are open to students who lack an undergraduate business degree, Regis requires students to complete certain foundational courses prior to beginning the core MBA curriculum. Admitted students with no business experience must take 15 credits of foundational courses, covering accounting, finance, marketing, and statistics. Applicants with undergraduate business majors are typically allowed to waive all foundational courses, and applicants with a strong business background may be able to forgo many courses. All foundational courses are available fully online.
University of Minnesota
|Location Minneapolis , MN||Tuition $$$$$||% Receiving Financial Aid 43||Student Population 50,678||Tuition $78,375||School Type Public||
With a campus that extends between Minneapolis and Saint Paul, UMN is a top public college in the Midwest and home to one of the region’s best MBA online programs. Intended for working professionals, this part-time distance MBA is ideal for students who live outside the Twin Cities area or need flexibility in their education. The 57-credit curriculum includes 29 credits of core courses and 28 credits of electives. Typically completed in about two and a half years, the program dedicates its first year entirely to foundational studies, covering managerial economics, data analysis, leadership, and operations management. During the second year, candidates complete the foundational requirements and move on to elective courses, allowing them to personalize their studies to reflect professional interests. UMN offers many fully online elective courses, such as corporate venturing, business formation, management of innovation, and skills for managerial presentations.
While UMN’s online MBA degree offers most coursework entirely online, the program does require students to complete at least two on-campus experiences. One is the program orientation, which takes place on the UMN campus at the beginning of the first fall semester. The orientation introduces overall program principles and gives candidates the opportunity to meet peers and professors. Students have several options to fulfill the remaining campus experience requirement, including an intensive on-campus course, a regular evening campus course, a global program experience, or one of UMN’s numerous student development events. Intensive campus courses serve as elective credit and pack an entire course curriculum into several days worth of study. These electives cover a range of topics, including cross-cultural negotiations, persuasion and influence, or the business of social media. Students who reside near the Twin Cities may choose to take an evening MBA elective class over the course of a semester. The global program experience allows degree candidates to travel abroad and observe international business, while student development events take place on campus and include business conferences, career workshops, case competitions, and other relevant professional opportunities.View School Profile
Stevens Institute of Technology
|Location Hoboken , NJ||Tuition $$$$$||% Receiving Financial Aid 63||Student Population 6,359||Tuition $74,592||School Type Private||
Based in Hoboken, New Jersey, Stevens is a private research college that emphasizes engineering and technology. The school’s unique focus extends to its online MBA degree, which trains students in both business skills and the use of analytics and technological tools. Stevens’ close proximity to New York also offers students unique opportunities in a wide selection of fields and industries unavailable elsewhere in the country. While the school does not require any business experience, the college recommends that applicants hold at least two years of full-time experience in a professional work environment.
This 48-credit program offers five concentration options, focusing on high-demand business subjects: business intelligence and analytics, finance, information systems, marketing, and project management. Students complete 12 core courses that stress business fundamentals, along with four elective courses that build deeper knowledge in a chosen area of business. Most courses can be taken either on campus or online, giving students the flexibility to mix their delivery format if they desire.
One of the defining components of Steven’s MBA online is its optional Field Consulting Program, which gives candidates the chance to apply their classroom knowledge to business issues in the real world. Working as part of a team under faculty supervision, students serve as consultants to one of the school’s partner companies, gaining hands-on experience and observing company culture. The consulting team analyzes organizational practices to identify a business problem or a potential opportunity, outlines possible solutions, and presents a formal recommendation for strategic action to company managers. The consulting experience integrates overall program learning and allows participants to make important connections in the business world. While the consulting project is recommended, it’s only available to full-time students and requires travel to different business locations around the New York and New Jersey area.
Alternately, Stevens offers a capstone course in integration and application of technology management, which includes a comprehensive business simulation activity that synthesizes core program topics. The simulation requires students to work in teams and devise strategies for operations management and organizational decision-making.
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College of William and Mary
|Location Williamsburg , VA||Tuition $$$$$||% Receiving Financial Aid 29||Student Population 8,484||Tuition $55,200||School Type Public||
Founded in 1693 in Williamsburg, Virginia, William and Mary is one of the country’s oldest and most prestigious public colleges. The school is also home to a highly respected online MBA degree that offers a unique educational experience centered on the theme of “Renaissance Manager, Revolutionary Leader.” This innovative program trains degree candidates to become versatile, knowledgeable managers who understand business in a historical, functional, and cross-cultural context, integrating these different perspectives into a cohesive management philosophy. Another key program concept is the “Wicked Problem”—a business issue whose precise nature and ideal solution are ultimately unknowable. MBA candidates draw on their own business experiences to identify a problem and develop their understanding of its causes and potential solutions throughout the course of the program.
The 49-credit curriculum begins with the eponymous Renaissance manager course, which introduces fundamental program concepts and tools, including methods of thinking and inquiry, problem identification approaches, interdisciplinary problem-solving, and strategies for framing and reframing business issues. These core skills serve candidates through the duration of the program, which typically takes two years. Through a series of 12 courses, students explore a variety of topics, including organizational management, operations, integrated technology, and leadership for the 21st century.
Two unique experiences define the end of William and Mary’s MBA online: the revolutionary leader practicum and the campus residency. Fulfilling the second half of the program theme, the practicum requires students to synthesize their overall learning in the context of their chosen problem, creating a detailed description of the problem, their approach to it, and the lessons learned from this approach. The one-credit weekend residency is the only required campus component, giving students the opportunity to meet at William and Mary for workshops, networking events, experiential learning activities, and guest lectures. Participants also benefit from meetings with the college’s “Executive Partners”, an experienced group of retired business professionals who volunteer to mentor MBA candidates. Campus residencies occur twice a year, and students are invited to attend all sessions, through only one is required for graduation.View School Profile
|Location Atlanta , GA||Tuition $$$$$||% Receiving Financial Aid 37||Student Population 13,788||Tuition $101,700||School Type Private||
Atlanta, Georgia is the home of Emory, a prestigious private college that offers a top online MBA program with a unique modular format and focus on student flexibility. Intended for students already serving in leadership roles, the modular MBA for executives is a hybrid degree that combines 75% online coursework with 25% classroom coursework. While it requires a larger campus component than many MBAs, the program’s rigorous curriculum model and innovative approach to leadership make it a popular choice for professionals.
The MBA’s concentrated, modular format has students move through a sequence of intensive courses one at a time, with each module building on previous learning material. The curriculum includes eight required campus residency sessions, held every 10 weeks. These weeklong campus immersions provide opportunities for classroom learning and group work, along with individualized student attention in the form of career coaching and personal development sessions. Participants also benefit from a wide selection of workshops and other useful events, such as guest speakers, networking activities, and career management seminars. Two additional off-campus immersion sessions—one international and the other on the West Coast—offer the chance to observe a variety of business practices and consult with leading companies both at home and abroad.
Emory’s MBA online curriculum offers a general management focus that draws connections between all areas of business. Core courses cover five major areas: accounting, finance, information systems and operations management, marketing, and organization and management. Electives offer the chance to gain deeper knowledge in specialized topics, with unique options such as the business of healthcare, process analysis and Six Sigma, and marketing analytics in Excel. Students may also perform an independent study for elective credit on an approved topic of their choice. Along with electives, Emory offers a unique Executives Healthcare Seminar Series, intended for MBA students employed in the healthcare field. This seminar series explores the role of business tools to address major issues facing the healthcare industry, such as strategic agility, value-based delivery, and cost and quality management.
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|Location Boston , MA||Tuition $$$$$||% Receiving Financial Aid 44||Student Population 19,940||Tuition $78,000||School Type Private||
Based in Boston, Massachusetts, NEU was one of the first colleges in the country to offer its MBA programs online, and the school holds a reputation for innovation and academic excellence. Emphasizing values of entrepreneurial thinking and experiential learning, this practice-based MBA degree explores business in a global context, challenging students to develop a deeper understanding of organizational management along with skills in communication, collaboration, leadership, and critical thinking.
NEU’s 50-credit online MBA degree includes 13 core business courses and five elective courses, allowing students to concentrate in eight high-demand subject areas: finance, healthcare management, high technology management, innovation entrepreneurship, international management, marketing, supply chain management, and sustainability. Students select a concentration by choosing at least three electives within a subject area. NEU also offers several dual concentrations that include two electives from two different subject areas along with one shared course, building connections between different fields of business. While not all subject areas can be combined into dual concentrations, some (such as international management and innovation entrepreneurship) pair with most other subjects. For students interested in deeper specialization, the school offers a dual MBA/Master of Science in finance degree that adds four finance courses to the MBA curriculum. Offering concentrations in either investments or corporate finance, the dual degree is also available fully online.
For degree candidates who live in the Boston area or are able to travel, NEU offers an optional campus residency that takes the place of one elective. Open to online learners who have completed at least three MBA courses, this week-long intensive residency allows students to work face-to-face with peers and faculty and participate in other campus events. MBA candidates can also take part in NEU’s International Field Study Residency, traveling abroad to observe global business practices firsthand. The field study is open to students who have completed the first year of MBA courses (26 credits minimum) with a 3.0 GPA or better. Locations vary from year to year, but previous classes have visited China, Greece, and Turkey.
Dallas Baptist University
|Location Dallas , TX||Tuition $$$$$||% Receiving Financial Aid 63||Student Population 5,319||Tuition $32,616||School Type Private||
Located near downtown Dallas, Texas, DBU is a small Christian liberal arts college that serves about 5,100 students. DBU began offering online classes in 1998, and over the past two decades the school has grown into one of the top distance education providers in Texas, with fully online degrees that accommodate the needs of working students. Open to applicants of all academic and professional backgrounds, the school’s MBA online programs offer wide-ranging perspectives on business, training students in both management practices and servant leadership. While all MBA courses are available online, DBU also offers on-campus “mini-terms” that allow students to earn credit through weeklong classroom intensive courses in Dallas. The school maintains two satellite campuses in Plano and Hurst, which may offer some on-campus MBA course options.
DBU’s MBA online is the school’s most popular graduate degree, with a range of concentration options that include finance, project management, marketing, or general management. The 36-credit degree curriculum includes 24 credits of core courses, exploring foundational topics, such as leadership in management, corporate finance, and creative problem solving for marketing decisions. An additional 12 credits of elective courses allow students to refine their professional focus. The program ends with a capstone course in strategic management decisions, which emphasizes theories and practices of organizational strategy. The capstone also includes a service-learning field study component that allows students to apply their business skills to a real organization.
DBU emphasizes student choice and flexibility, and the school offers a substantial selection of dual degree options for candidates looking to specialize their MBA. Most of DBU’s dual degree MBA options broadly focus on areas of education, ministry, or leadership with available pairings in children’s ministry, higher education, and global leadership. While all MBA courses are available online, dual degrees may require some on-campus courses, particularly for certain electives. Students interested in pursuing dual degree pathways must consult with an advisor to determine available options.
North Carolina State University at Raleigh
|Location Raleigh , NC||Tuition $$$$$||% Receiving Financial Aid 42||Student Population 34,015||Tuition $44,920||School Type Public||
With an enrollment of more than 32,000, NCSU is the largest college in the Carolinas and the home of one of the region’s best online MBA programs. Students pursuing their MBA online have two options: an intensive, accelerated format that allows for completion in as little as 21 months, or a flexible program that offers a more relaxed pace and allows up to six years for completion. NCSU’s MBA online offers start dates in either the fall or spring, making it easy for candidates to begin the program when it suits their schedule.
The MBA contains 40 total credits, with a core curriculum that emphasizes both business processes and technology applications. Along with the business core, students complete six credits of depth requirement courses, which build specialized knowledge in a particular business subject. Comparable to concentrations in the traditional MBA program, depth options include biosciences management, finance, innovation, technology entrepreneurship and commercialization, supply chain management, and marketing. Students also choose from additional elective courses to develop further knowledge in subject areas, such as consumer behavior, data security and privacy, or product and brand management.
NCSU’s online courses use a predominantly asynchronous format, with much of the course material delivered through video lectures and podcasts. Online learners also divide into virtual teams to perform group work, discussions, and other projects. Some synchronous course sessions may require students to log on at prearranged times for virtual course meetings or other live activities. While most MBA coursework is available totally online, NCSU does require students to attend two three-day residency sessions on its main campus in Raleigh, North Carolina. These experiences give online learners the chance to meet with peers and faculty, participate in structured learning activities, and enjoy social and networking opportunities. Active duty military students who are unable to attend can waive the residencies and substitute extra elective courses in their place. Candidates in the accelerated track who wish to graduate in 21 months may have to complete an additional on-campus course or an international course to finish the program as quickly as possible.
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|Location Lynchburg , VA||Tuition $$$$$||% Receiving Financial Aid 66||Student Population 80,494||Tuition $24,794||School Type Private||
Founded by the Reverend Jerry Falwell, Liberty is a conservative, Christian university located in Lynchburg, Virginia. Liberty’s online MBA holds accreditation from the prestigious Accreditation Council for Business Schools and Programs. The program features 16 concentrations in diverse fields such as accounting, American legal studies, criminal justice administration, and healthcare management.
Liberty’s online MBA is delivered in an asynchronous format so students can create their own schedules. The curriculum covers 45 credit hours of material. The university allows degree seekers to transfer up to 50% of credits required for the master’s degree. The school prefers applicants with a bachelor’s degree and a 3.0 GPA. Students interested in the accounting cognate must have completed several classes in accounting and finance. Liberty hasn’t raised tuition rates in three years. Military students receive a significant discount on tuition rates. Full-time students can complete the program in two years.
Missouri State University
|Location Springfield , MO||Tuition $$$$$||% Receiving Financial Aid 50||Student Population 22,273||Tuition $14,862||School Type Public||
Located in Springfield, MSU offers one of the top online MBAs for students seeking a program with concentrations across a wide variety of fields. Available entirely online, the program targets professionals with some business experience. Students can choose from more than a dozen specialty areas, including computer information systems, finance, data analytics, forensic accounting, management, and marketing. Graduates obtain not only an MBA, but also a graduate certificate in one of these areas, enhancing their appeal in the marketplace.
MSU’s online MBA follows a 33-credit curriculum. Students must earn 18 hours of foundational credits in subjects like accounting, finance, and statistics. Learners then move on to core courses, a required seminar, and six credits in electives. Degree candidates must prove their proficiency in both research and writing. Applicants must submit undergraduate transcripts, GRE or GMAT scores, and a resume. The school often waives the GMAT requirement for students with more than a 3.25 GPA. Distance learners pay in-state tuition.
|Location Washington , DC||Tuition $$$$$||% Receiving Financial Aid 52||Student Population 13,198||Tuition $31,758||School Type Private||
American University’s Kogod School of Business is the oldest accredited business school in Washington, D.C. The school has offered instruction in the finer points of finance, accounting, and marketing for more than 60 years. Accredited by the elite Association to Advance Collegiate Schools of Business (AACSB), AU’s online MBA blends web-based classes with real-world learning. Students not only complete asynchronous online coursework, but also undergo two immersions in cities across the country and the globe.
Kogod’s 48-credit online MBA is built around 12 core courses that emphasize connection over competition. Distance learners add three electives to meet their requirements. Many students choose to focus these electives in an area of concentration such as business analytics, consulting, finance, international business, and marketing. The university offers four start dates per year. Applicants must submit their resumes and previous collegiate transcripts. Kogod does not require the GMAT or GRE.
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University of Massachusetts - Amherst
|Location Amherst , MA||Tuition $$$$$||% Receiving Financial Aid 60||Student Population 29,269||Tuition $20,093||School Type Public||
UMass Amherst offers one of the nation’s best online MBA programs. With no residential requirements and an asynchronous format, the 39-credit course of study is ideal for working businesspeople. The program features focus areas in business analytics, entrepreneurship, finance, healthcare administration, marketing, and sports management. Distance learning students may choose to take some classes at UMass satellite locations. UMass Amherst’s business programs carry accreditation from the elite AACSB.
UMass boasts ten years of experience in online instruction. The university provides distance learners with an array of support services, including tech help, advising, and tutoring. Networking opportunities are available to online students through the Graduate Business Association, MBA Women International, and Net Impact. UMass Amherst allows students to take two classes before they officially enroll in the program. The school prefers candidates with three to five years of experience. Tuition is the same for online classes and classes at UMass’ satellite locations.
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University of Miami
|Location Coral Gables , FL||Tuition $$$$$||% Receiving Financial Aid 29||Student Population 16,825||Tuition $37,424||School Type Private||
UM has adapted its AACSB-accredited MBA program into a format suitable for the busy schedules of today’s working professionals. Distance learners can complete this top online MBA program in 24 to 28 months of part-time study. Students can tailor the curriculum to their own career ambitions, choosing from concentrations in corporate finance, financial decision making, and accounting. Learners may also focus their studies in other areas using electives.
UM’s MBA online program features asynchronous online coursework so working professionals can study on their own schedules. Faculty members hold real-time office hours to meet with their pupils. Degree candidates have the option of attending a one-week on-campus residency to meet their professors and peers. Online learners also have access to UM’s famous networking opportunities. Applicants must submit official undergraduate transcripts, GMAT or GRE scores, a resume, a personal statement, and two letters of recommendation.
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|Location Dayton , TN||Tuition $$$$$||% Receiving Financial Aid 52||Student Population 1,489||Tuition $16,431||School Type Private||
Bryan filters its online MBA through a biblical worldview. Based in Dayton, Tennessee, the Christian liberal arts university offers a handful of graduate-level programs through the internet. Distance learners can earn the accelerated online MBA in just 18 months. Accredited by the International Assembly for Collegiate Business Education, the program highlights ethics, leadership, global business, and technological knowledge. The curriculum builds skills in decision making, quantitative analysis, and reading financial indicators. Participants can elect to specialize in marketing, human resources, healthcare administration, ministry, or sports management.
Bryan’s 36-credit online MBA is available entirely over the internet. Most classes are asynchronous to accommodate students with full-time jobs. The university schedules classes in accelerated, nine-week sessions. For admission, students should submit a resume, undergraduate transcripts, a personal statement, and two professional recommendations. Bryan prides itself on affordability, and its program costs a third of what many other schools charge.
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|Location Poughkeepsie , NY||Tuition $$$$$||% Receiving Financial Aid 56||Student Population 6,474||Tuition $35,817||School Type Private||
Overlooking the Hudson River in Poughkeepsie, New York, Marist is a comprehensive liberal arts college known for its forward-thinking usage of technology. The small, independent institution offers one of the nation’s top online MBA programs. The program has been recognized for its excellence by online MBA rankings such as the Princeton Review and U.S. News & World Report. The 36-credit curriculum gives students a strong foundation in business basics while also exploring advanced topics in management, technology, business analytics, and industry practices. Students may choose a concentration in ethical leadership, financial management, or healthcare administration.
The online MBA program has earned accreditation from the AACSB. Part-time students can complete the program in two-and-a-half years, while full-time students can finish much sooner. All coursework is available in an asynchronous online format. Applicants to the online MBA must submit undergraduate transcripts, GRE or GMAT scores, three essays, and a current resume.
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|Location Syracuse , NY||Tuition $$$$$||% Receiving Financial Aid 55||Student Population 21,789||Tuition $31,823||School Type Private||
Syracuse’s online MBA program teaches students how to effectively manage businesses in a global environment. Accredited by the AACSB, the 54-credit master’s program stresses critical thinking, decision making, problem solving, and effective communication. Students may enroll in specialized programs in accounting, business analytics, finance, entrepreneurship, marketing management, and supply chain management. Students can also use electives to create a custom program.
These full-time online MBA programs revolve around synchronous meetings in digital classrooms. Students must also attend three residencies over the course of the two-year program. Syracuse structures these gatherings like business conferences. Meetings take place in cities across the country and around the globe. Online students have access to the school’s professional development resources, including global networking events and personalized career coaching. Applicants must have a year of work experience. Potential students must submit GMAT scores unless they have more than five years of work experience.
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Nova Southeastern University
|Location Fort Lauderdale , FL||Tuition $$$$$||% Receiving Financial Aid 58||Student Population 23,236||Tuition $25,344||School Type Private||
A private university located near Miami, Florida, NSU specializes in professional education. The school’s 39-credit online MBA features a wide range of specialization options for students interested in a particular field of study. Students can select from concentrations in business intelligence, finance, human resource management, international business, management, marketing, process improvement, and supply chain management. Students can also combine specializations, double up, mix and match, or use electives to create their own concentration.
Distance learners can complete NSU’s online MBA degree in two years or less. Students can complete all coursework asynchronously from home with no on-campus visits. The school provides five start dates each year. Online students pay slightly more than students enrolled on campus. Transfer students may apply up to six credits towards the degree. NSU prefers applicants with a 3.0 undergraduate GPA. Applicants should have completed undergraduate courses in statistics, financial accounting, and business finance.
East Carolina University
|Location Greenville , NC||Tuition $$$$$||% Receiving Financial Aid 57||Student Population 28,289||Tuition $12,817||School Type Public||
Located in Greenville, North Carolina, ECU has built a thriving virtual campus. The online MBA program accepts students from any undergraduate background, even those unrelated to business. The 54-credit curriculum educates students in business fundamentals such as economics, finance, information systems, operations, marketing, strategy, and supply chain management. Students also gain the managerial skills needed to move into leadership positions. Notable courses include fraud examination, business and society, conflict resolution, web technologies for business, sports marketing, and food service management.
Distance learners may choose to take some classes on campus. Classwork is entirely asynchronous. The university allows participants to enroll in anywhere from one to five courses a semester. The school also allows students to take a semester or more off in certain circumstances. Students with a background in business may not have to complete certain foundational courses. Once distance learners meet prerequisites, they can take classes in any order. Applicants must submit baccalaureate transcripts, GRE or GMAT scores, and a resume.
Colorado State University
|Location Fort Collins , CO||Tuition $$$$$||% Receiving Financial Aid 45||Student Population 30,614||Tuition $16,232||School Type Public||
CSU boasts one of the best online MBA programs in the country, thanks to its comprehensive curriculum. The AACSB-accredited program requires 42 credits of coursework in international business, quantitative business analysis, managing human capital, marketing strategy, and accounting concepts. Students can enhance their personal marketability by adding graduate certificates in applied finance, accounting ethics and auditing, business intelligence, marketing management, project management, business information systems. Graduates leave with a rich network of contacts and friends.
While the program is designed to be completed in two years, distance learners may take up to five years to earn their diploma. CSU’s online MBA curriculum follows a lock-step format, with each successive class building on the one before it. Coursework is asynchronous and runs concurrently with the university’s eight-week semester schedule. The professional degree plan does not require a thesis, final project, or culminating exam. Applicants must have at least four years of professional experience. The average participant is a working professional with 12 years of experience.
|Location Garland , TX||Tuition $$$$$||% Receiving Financial Aid -||Student Population 1,379||Tuition $25,760||School Type Private||
Established to serve working professionals, Amberton offers an array of master’s degrees in an online format. The university offers online MBA programs in general business, international business, management, project management, and strategic leadership. Alternately, students may create their own plan of study with the help of an academic advisor. Notable electives include social media in business, global economic issues, managing the generations, international marketing, and financial institutions and markets.
The 36-credit curriculum includes 30 credits in major requirements and six credits in required graduate studies. For the general MBA, learners complete coursework in marketing, management, economics, finance, and business. Students without relevant undergraduate experience may have to complete prerequisites in statistics, information systems, accounting and finance, and market structure. Most classes are taught asynchronously. In order to earn the online MBA, students must maintain a 3.0 GPA. Transfer students must earn at least 24 credits through Amberton.
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Pennsylvania State University
|Location University Park , PA||Tuition $$$$$||% Receiving Financial Aid 50||Student Population 47,307||Tuition $25,055||School Type Public||
Penn State offers one of the nation’s top online MBA programs for students who want a complete customizable degree plan. The well-renowned university allows students to design a program that fits their schedules and career goals. The 48-credit curriculum includes coursework in collaborative teamwork, strategic leadership, and business skills. Distance learners then complete their own program of study, using ten different concentrations and dozens of electives to create individualized pathways. All participants attend a five-day residence on campus at the beginning of the program.
Penn State created its MBA online program using the “ICE” philosophy. The school believes that the three pillars of a successful distance MBA are integration, collaboration, and engagement. Penn State stresses the interconnectivity of business subjects, the importance of teamwork, and active participation. Applications should submit undergraduate transcripts, GRE and GMAT scores, two references, and a resume. Online students pay a flat-rate tuition.
University of La Verne
|Location La Verne , CA||Tuition $$$$$||% Receiving Financial Aid 67||Student Population 8,334||Tuition $22,284||School Type Private||
Set in a small city to the east of Los Angeles, ULV is a private, nonsectarian university of about 5,000 students. The institution offers an online MBA degree aimed at business professionals with three or more years of work experience. The 33-credit curriculum splits into three parts: 18 credits in core courses, 12 credits in electives or an area of concentration, and three credits in the strategic management capstone. Areas of concentration include accounting, finance, health services management, information technology, international business, and supply chain management.
La Verne’s MBA online blends theory with real-world application. Most coursework is available in an asynchronous format. Degree candidates have five years to complete their studies. Learners can enroll in no more than six units at a time. The university awards credit for prior learning through CLEP and DANTES exams. Interested students can attend an online webinar to learn more about earning an MBA online. The program is only available to California residents at this time.
Azusa Pacific University
|Location Azusa , CA||Tuition $$$$$||% Receiving Financial Aid 52||Student Population 9,975||Tuition $28,506||School Type Private||
An evangelical Christian institution located not far from Los Angeles, APU offers more than 40 degrees through its online learning platform. The school currently offers online MBA programs in accounting, entrepreneurship, finance, international business, marketing, organizational science, and sports management. The 42-credit curriculum includes 30 credits in core courses and an additional 12 credits in an area of concentration. With approval, students can add a second concentration to their degree plan.
APU’s online MBA programs develop business acumen in essential areas like analytics, team building, collaboration, and decision making. In keeping with the university’s Christian tradition, the program places a strong focus on ethics. Classes run in eight-week sessions. APU has developed a reputation for the depth of interaction between distance learners and their professors. At the graduate level, the student-to-faculty ratio is 10 to 1. All students must complete either a global field experience or a capstone project.
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The University of West Florida
|Location Pensacola , FL||Tuition $$$$$||% Receiving Financial Aid 47||Student Population 12,763||Tuition $15,065||School Type Public||
UWF’s program is rated one of the top online MBA degrees largely due to its experiential nature; the Pensacola institution built almost 50% of the curriculum around applied learning. Graduates leave the 33-credit program with a professional portfolio that demonstrates their academic knowledge and work accomplishments. Each student completes projects in their own industry, making their experiences immediately transferable to their professional interests. Even though the program is online, students still collaborate with each other to build skills in teamwork and problem solving. Degree seekers typically complete the program in 14 months.
Notable courses include business and public policy; quantitative methods; management and organizational behavior; and operations management problems. Concentrations are available in accounting, entrepreneurship, and supply-chain logistics management. Most online MBA coursework is asynchronous. Classes are structured in accelerated, seven-week terms. Applicants should submit transcripts demonstrating a 3.0 GPA or higher, two letters of recommendation, a professional resume, and a personal statement.
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Florida International University
|Location Miami , FL||Tuition $$$$$||% Receiving Financial Aid 46||Student Population 49,782||Tuition $12,966||School Type Public||
Florida International University (FIU), South Florida’s largest and among the top five largest universities in the nation, offers one of the best online MBAs – the Corporate MBA.
The AACSB-accredited, fully online program is for working professionals seeking advancement, either as a corporate executive or a successful business owner. Core competencies include problem solving on a local and global level; building teamwork and collaboration; analyzing balance sheets and budgeting; and identifying ethical problems.
FIU’s online MBA presents distance learners with three enrollment options: taking one class per quarter and finishing in two years; doubling up with two courses per quarter and graduating in 18 months; or pursuing a flexible route. In the flexible option, students take more classes some quarters and less classes other quarters, as their schedules allow.
Online students may begin classes during any of five starts, offered annually (August, October, January, March and May). They are also eligible to apply for FIU’s $10,000 scholarship.
Angel Burgos, Executive Director, MBA Programs
“Florida International University offers a variety of MBA programs to accommodate busy working professionals. Our Corporate MBA is offered entirely online. Consecutively ranked in the top 20 for four years by the Financial Times, the program is designed for current executives and managers who want the flexibility and convenience of taking classes around their schedules.
FIU students pursue an MBA for three critical reasons: skills, brand, and network. We offer the same courses and faculty in our online courses, as we do in our face-to-face programs. Enrolled students have the option to select from one of these specializations within their program: entrepreneurship, finance, international business, marketing, strategic negotiations, and business analytics.
There are many opportunities to get to know your classmates through the online learning experience, social media and other digital platforms. Our students often find this to be a convenient and efficient way to make connections in school and for the future.”
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Washington State University
|Location Pullman , WA||Tuition $$$$$||% Receiving Financial Aid 49||Student Population 29,686||Tuition $17,815||School Type Public||
WSU’s program is well-regarded in online MBA rankings lists because of its unique global perspective. The 36-credit AACSB-accredited program offers students the opportunity to spend ten days in Asia studying international markets. The optional immersion is just one of the cross-cultural aspects of WSU’s MBA online curriculum. Students can elect to concentrate in international business or earn a graduate certificate in the subject. Other areas of specialization include marketing, hospitality, and finance. Alternately, participants can stay on the general track.
The program is available entirely online in an asynchronous format. All distance learners conclude their studies with three capstone courses. Most students graduate in about two years. The university accepts up to six transfer credits from an AACSB-accredited program. WSU also hosts an executive online MBA program for professionals with extensive work experience. Applicants must submit GMAT scores, three letters of recommendation, a resume, transcripts, and a statement of purpose.
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The University of Texas at Dallas
|Location Richardson , TX||Tuition $$$$$||% Receiving Financial Aid 53||Student Population 24,554||Tuition $10,254||School Type Public||
UT Dallas hosts a suite of online and hybrid AACSB-accredited MBA programs through its prestigious Naveen Jindal School of Management. Targeted toward working businesspeople, these programs include executive and professional MBAs, MBAs combined with other master’s degrees, and more than a dozen areas of concentration. Specialties include tracks in accounting and finance along with less usual fields like internal auditing, energy management, and systems engineering. The 53-credit fully-online professional MBA is the most distance-friendly option.
Most student’s in UT Dallas’ online MBA work full-time and enroll on a part-time basis. Most classes are asynchronous, though some have real-time components. Students must earn 30 credits in core business courses and 23 credits in electives. The university evaluates applicants based on undergraduate transcripts, GMAT or GRE scores, a personal essay, work history, and an interview. Candidates must have passed an undergraduate calculus course with a B or better. UT Dallas guarantees it won’t raise tuition for 12 consecutive semesters for new students.
|Location Irvine , CA||Tuition $$$$$||% Receiving Financial Aid 56||Student Population 8,004||Tuition $15,184||School Type Private||
Founded in 1958 to serve the needs of working professionals, Brandman offers a full slate of internet-based degrees, including one of the nation’s top online MBA programs. The school’s affordable master’s in business administration features concentrations in accounting, finance, entrepreneurship, health administration, human resources, international business marketing, organizational leadership, and e-commerce strategy. Graduates are well-versed in modern business skills such as global strategy, effective communication, leadership, ethics, and innovation.
To earn the MBA online, students must complete 36 to 48 credits, depending upon whether they took certain prerequisites at the undergraduate level. Core courses include corporate responsibility, data analysis for decision making, and leading organizational change. All students must participate in the business strategy and competitive advantage capstone. The university offers a low tuition rate that is almost half of what many other schools charge. Brandman also offers an online MBA in accounting.
Oklahoma State University
|Location Stillwater , OK||Tuition $$$$$||% Receiving Financial Aid 42||Student Population 25,930||Tuition $13,951||School Type Public||
OSU has offered its online MBA program for more than 25 years. The AACSB-accredited program features specializations in sustainability, data science, energy business, entrepreneurship, global marketing, information assurance, marketing analytics, and nonprofit management. The part-time course of study generally takes students three and a half years to complete. The program is highly interactive, with program participants building relationships with their peers and professors.
Unlike many web-based courses, students watch lectures recorded by faculty members instead of reading text off a screen. Classes are asynchronous, so students can view lectures and complete coursework at any time. Students in the OSU online MBA program must complete 42 credits, including 12 credits of electives. Applicants must have a baccalaureate degree, a GPA of 3.0 or higher, and competitive GMAT scores. OSU prefers students with work experience. Oklahomans pay a lower tuition rate than out-of-state students.
|Location Salem , OR||Tuition $$$$$||% Receiving Financial Aid 72||Student Population 1,232||Tuition $23,227||School Type Private||
Founded as a Bible institute in 1935, Corban has grown into a well-regarded Christian university. Located in Salem, Oregon, the school offers an online MBA that blends a sound business foundation with biblical principles. All courses are taught by experienced faculty members with an average of 23 years of business experience. Professors challenge program participants to integrate biblical perspectives into their work.
Distance learners pursuing Corban’s MBA online take one class in each five-week session. In this format, students can earn all 36 credits in just 16 months. Coursework includes study in accounting, ethics, leadership, global business, management, organizational behavior, and IT. Electives include classes in nonprofit management and stewardship for nonprofits. These classes prepare graduates for work not just in corporate environments, but also in religious institutions. All courses are available online through the Converge platform. All applicants must have a professed faith in Jesus and live a Christian lifestyle.
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University of St Francis
|Location Joliet , IL||Tuition $$$$$||% Receiving Financial Aid 69||Student Population 3,957||Tuition $17,968||School Type Private||
A Catholic university rooted in the Franciscan tradition, USF now has more students enrolled in distance learning programs than it does on its main campus in Joliet, Illinois. The mid-sized institution hosts one of the Midwest’s best online MBAs. Students can complete the 36-credit plan of study in as little as one year or extend it for two years. The curriculum is experiential in nature, revolving around collaborative projects, case studies, directed discussions, and presentations. Available concentrations include accounting, business analytics, finance, health and administration, human resource management, supply chain management, management, and training and development.
Classes for USF’s online MBA are available in an asynchronous format. Courses integrate a great deal of interaction and collaboration between faculty and students. USF accepts up to nine transfer credits. Distance learners can use courses from the MBA as a bridge to a second master’s degree in management, health administration, or training and development.
University of Wisconsin
|Location Madison , WI||Tuition $$$$$||% Receiving Financial Aid 36||Student Population 42,716||Tuition $15,874||School Type Public||
Four business schools on four campuses of the UW system partner to host UW’s AACSB-accredited online MBA. All instructors to complete a four-week course to qualify for a teaching role in the 30-credit program. Core courses are taught in teams of faculty members. Classes incorporate activities, discussions, team projects, and peer review to encourage collaboration among distance learners. All classwork is available in an online, asynchronous format with no on-campus visits. Most students complete the program within three years.
The online MBA covers 17 credits of core modules in subjects like project development, strategic management in the global environment, and future business. Learners also take 13 credits in electives. Degree seekers can use elective credits to focus in an area of personal interest or gain a broad overview of the field. Everyone must complete a mini module in leadership. UW charges the same flat tuition rate regardless of residency.View School Profile
Mississippi State University
|Location Mississippi State , MS||Tuition $$$$$||% Receiving Financial Aid 50||Student Population 20,873||Tuition $15,628||School Type Public||
The flagship school of the Mississippi public university system, MSU’s main campus is so large that it’s essentially its own town. The school offers a nationally ranked online MBA that emphasizes business intelligence, economics, finance, management, marketing, and information systems. Students can pursue general track or a specialization in project management. Both AACSB-accredited programs, the general MBA requires 30 credits of coursework while the MBA in Project Management requires 36 . Core competencies include a firm foundation in business basics; the ability to analyze, synthesize, and utilize data; skills in written and oral communication; and effective leadership.
MSU accepts up to six graduate transfer credits. Applicants must hold an undergraduate degree and acceptable scores on the GMAT or GRE. The university only grants credit for prerequisites earned with a grade of B or better. Potential students should also submit a statement of purpose, three letters of recommendation, and a resume. All distance learners pay in-state tuition regardless of residency status.
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The methodology behind our ranking is grounded in statistical data and a few consistently applied guiding principles. Our ranking reflects the most recent data compiled from IPEDS and the College Navigator, both of which are hosted by the National Center for Education Statistics, as well as data collected from university websites. Our goal is to objectively assess relative quality based on academics, affordability, and the breadth and depth of online learning opportunities. The following criteria were used to make these assessments:
- Each school must be an accredited public or private, not-for-profit institution.
- Must offer an online Master's in Business Administration degree program.
- Must submit an annual report to the National Center for Education Statistics.
All eligible institutions are ranked on a 100 point scale. A perfect score of 100 is earned by ranking #1 for all ranking factors.
Academic Quality - 65% of Total Score
Admissions Rate - 25%
Enrollment Rates - 10%
Graduate Students as a Percentage of All Business Students - 5%
Graduation Rate - 30%
Number of MBA Graduates - 20%
Number of Concentrations Offered - 10%
Affordability - 25% of Total Score
Tuition and Fees - 40%
Loan Default Rate - 40%
Percentage of Enrolled Students Taking Federal Loans - 20%
Online Programming - 10% of Total Score
Number of Programs Offered Online - 50%
Percentage of Graduate Students Taking Online Courses - 50%
$15K - $25K
$25K - $40K
$40K - $60K
Schools featured in our ranking demonstrate a commitment to high-quality education for their students; quality is measured and weighed through various data points that are specific to the topic of the online MBA. Each methodology drives proprietary calculations, which are grounded in statistical information, and developed to recognize academically robust MBA programs that are well adapted to the online format and foster student success throughout the program and after graduation.
Sponsored school listings are separate, paid advertisements and are clearly marked with a "SPONSORED" tag to distinguish them from editorially ranked schools. Our school rankings are editorially determined, independently vetted, and are not influenced by schools that pay for advertisements.
For questions regarding our rankings or sponsored schools, please email us at email@example.com.
Why Should You Get an Online MBA?
Advances in technology have revolutionized the way we do business. As the industry has changed, approaches to sound business practices have continued to gain steam, and employers increasingly believe that a solid understanding of these factors can only be achieved at the master's level or above. An undergraduate degree is no longer all it takes to be competitive in the workplace. As you'll see in the table below, undergraduate degree salary returns also pale in comparison.
Comparison of Business Administration Master's Degrees
There is no shortage of graduate degree programs tailored to the needs and goals of aspiring business leaders. These programs are designed to be convenient for working adults to complete, delivering advanced knowledge and leadership training that's often specific to a particular industry or area of interest. Depending on one's career goals, a more specific master's program may be appropriate. Other students, however, may find that an online MBA provides a comprehensive framework that leads to a satisfying career.
|Master of Construction Management||A master’s of construction management is a multidisciplinary degree program that focuses on highly technical management principles and techniques applicable to commercial construction. Executives in this industry collaborate with other professionals across a wide breadth of specialties, including architecture, building, contracting, real estate, engineering, and project management.||$73,000||1-2 Years|
|Master of Marketing & Management||This master’s degree emphasizes the knowledge and leadership skills necessary to meet a business’s marketing objective. The program delivers a thorough review of marketing strategies, media and technology, research and analytics, and product management. This degree is ideal for executives who aspire to lead marketing departments in any industry.||$66,000||1-2 Years|
|Master of Business Administration (MBA)||The general MBA prepares its graduates for management roles in all sectors of industry. Employing a cross-disciplinary approach, these programs explore the business functions essential for success in today’s economy: accounting, finance, business law, ethics, marketing, strategic planning, organizational behavior, and leadership. In many cases, MBA students concentrate their studies on specific industries or skill sets that match their career goals.||$85,000||18-36 Months|
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Online MBA Curriculum
Every business administration online MBA program designs its own curriculum, but they all work toward the same goal: to equip graduates with a working knowledge of specific core competencies. Below, we offer a sample online MBA business administration curriculum, and illustrate how this knowledge translates in the workplace.
|Course||Competencies Developed||Occupational Skill Level|
|Financial Modeling||Use quantitative models for financial decision-making. Perform financial statement analysis. Apply corporate finance theory and advanced Excel skills to forecast potential outcomes. Calculate time value of money, cash flows, regressions, risk analysis, options, equity valuation, and stock portfolio growth.||
TITLE: Vice President, Finance
SALARY: growth of 11%
|Strategic Marketing||Create target customer profiles and determine target needs. Develop strategies to bring products to that market with attractive promotions. Measure, analyze and refine marketing efforts. Develop data-driven pricing and promotional plans.||
TITLE: Marketing Manager
SALARY: growth of 9%
|Corporate Communications||Deliver essential information that is easily understood, appropriately detailed, grammatically sound, and structured for its intended audience. Communication styles include written, spoken, and mixed media.||
TITLE: Director of Communications
SALARY: growth of 17%
|Organizational Behavior||Establish productive relationships with peers. Effectively manage subordinates. Promote company culture’s role in its success. Lead teams effectively.||
TITLE: Director of Operations
SALARY: growth of 9%
|Ethics and Compliance||Develop, implement, and maintain programs in accordance with regulatory compliance requirements. Identify ethical issues and propose solutions. Mitigate risk via transparency.||
TITLE: Compliance Officer
SALARY: growth of 9%
|Leadership||Establish productive relationships with peers. Effectively manage subordinates. Promote company culture’s role in its success. Lead teams effectively.||
TITLE: Director of Operations
SALARY: growth of 9%
|Regulatory Compliance||Develop, implement, and maintain programs in accordance with regulatory compliance requirements. Identify ethical issues and propose solutions. Mitigate risk via transparency.||
TITLE: Compliance Officer
SALARY: growth of 1%
What Can You Do With an Online MBA?
Depending on personal interests and natural aptitude, an online MBA can lead to an upwardly mobile career in a number of specialty areas. Here, we've listed five senior-level positions to which MBA candidates can aspire. While all salaries are impressive, their range reflects differing levels of personal responsibility and professional certification.
|Director, Communications||Median Salary: $75,000|
||Collaborate with senior executive to develop messaging. Direct company public relations efforts, including crisis response. Manage media coverage. Oversee communications team.|
|Manager, Marketing||Median Salary: $63,500|
||Collaborate with product management to bring products to market with attractive promotions. Oversee concept development, design, production, implementation and analytics of marketing campaigns. Manage marketing team.|
|Vice President, Finance||Median Salary: $134,000|
||Plan, implement and coordinate budgets. Develop strategic plans for financial growth. Manage investments. Oversee production of financial reporting. Manage accounting team.|
|Director, Business Operations||Median Salary: $89,000|
||Direct and oversee daily business activities, including policy development, human resource strategy, resource allocation, contract negotiation, and project management.|
|Chief Compliance Officer||Median Salary: $113,000|
||Ensure that external regulatory legislation and internal policy rules are met. Identify risks, design programs to mitigate risk, and report status to senior executives.|
How to Choose an Online MBA Program
If you've decided that an MBA is right for you, then it is time to start narrowing down the list of schools you are interested in. Here are a few tips and tricks to help you through this process.
Search for schools in your area
Even though you are looking for online programs, it can be helpful to choose a school that is within a 100 mile radius of your home. Online students often report that they enjoy having the ability to visit campus if they want to. In addition, schools often partner with local businesses, meaning a school in your area will have a better chance of helping you find a job close to home.
Compare student outcomes data
Many schools will readily provide this information on their website; however, if you can't find it, be sure to contact the school and ask for it. This data should include graduation rates, employment rates, and the compensation levels of recent graduates. When looked at side-by-side, this information can give you an easy glimpse of program quality.
Estimate the expected costs of your programs
Prospective students often underestimate the total cost of their program. Make sure you calculate the total number of credit hours you will need to graduate, and multiply that by cost per credit hour. Do not forget to include the cost of supplies, internet, and time you will spend not earning an income. Additionally, compare financial aid options, different schools may offer better financial aid packages and/or scholarships that can offset the cost of education.
Check that classes will fit in with your schedule
One of the central benefits of online education is flexibility. However, some programs will require set meeting times, synchronous workshops, and mandatory campus visits. Be sure that you are aware of all time commitments and that they will fit into your current schedule.
Look for partnerships with local businesses/hospitals
The main objective of getting your MBA is to find a secure job with a healthy salary in a field you enjoy. To that end, attending school that is well connected with local hospitals and businesses can be a fantastic leg up upon graduation. Many of these partners will offer internships to students that can lead to full-time employment or provide the network and experience you need to get a job elsewhere.
Make sure the program is accredited
Accreditation is the formal review process that ensures a school is offering a reputable program adhering to minimum academic standards. The Association to Advance Collegiate Schools of Business is the national agency that accredits for undergraduate, master's and doctoral programs in business and accounting. By checking a program's status with the AACSB, you can be confident you are receiving a recognized, quality degree. Employers generally will not hire job candidates who possess a degree from a school that is not accredited, and schools will not accept academic credentials from an unaccredited program.
Talk to current students and/or recent alumni
One of the best resources when it comes to making a final decision on an online MBA program is actual students and graduates. They can give you an unbiased, real-world take on how the program has served them, what they have liked, and what they have disliked. Ask an admissions counselor to put you in touch with a current student or recent alumni. Alternatively, use LinkedIn or Facebook to find and reach out to people.
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What Certifications and Licenses are Needed for a Career in Business Administration?
Business administration is by definition a multidisciplinary field. Within these disciplines, professional credentials demonstrate that an individual has met a standard of knowledge and skills that are applicable to specific roles. Some roles require certification or licensure; controllers and auditors, for example, must be CPAs. In other positions, employers may expect a particular credential even though it isn't legally required (this is often the case in, for example, project management). Some online MBA programs make it possible to earn professional certification during one's course of study, while others require additional study or exams. Below, we've listed a small sample of the credentials available to a business administration online MBA candidate.
|Certified Public Accountant (CPA)||The CPA credential is required by all states for professional licensure. In addition, only CPAs may perform federally mandated audits of publicly traded companies. Controllers, financial officers, and securities analysts are required to hold CPA licensure.|
|Project Management Professional (PMP)||Considered the industry gold standard, the PMP credential is based on rigorous training and testing. This certification is useful for any executive who leads cross-functional teams.|
|Lean Six Sigma||The Six Sigma family of certifications is based on process improvement that leads to efficiency and cost savings. Practitioners of the method identify weak organizational areas, analyze them, and seek to improve them, ultimately strengthening the company. Employers hold these four credentials in high regard.|
|Chartered Financial Analyst (CFA)||Arguably one of the most difficult professional designations to earn in business, the CFA credential guarantees advanced knowledge in investment analysis and portfolio management. Any senior-level finance executive can benefit from holding CFA charter.|
Resources for MBA Students
While scholarships at the graduate level aren't plentiful, they are available to the diligent researcher. Pursuing external scholarships can be time well spent, particularly for a distance learner unable to defray costs by working on campus. External scholarships vary widely in size and eligibility requirements, depending on the granting body. Often, membership in an organization is required. It's important to note that professional organizations offer many benefits that go beyond the opportunity to apply for a scholarship — a membership fee may be a sound investment. Below we've listed a small sampling of the variety of scholarships available for the right online MBA business administration candidate.