Best MBAs in Human Resources

Holland Webb
Updated October 16, 2023
Edited by
Looking for the best human resources MBA? Explore our list of top programs and consider whether an HR MBA is worth the investment of time, energy, and finances.

Are you ready to discover your college program?

Talent management professionals can pursue advanced roles in their fields after earning MBAs. In these two-year graduate programs, they can discover business principles and practical tools to develop, manage, and evaluate effective human resources (HR) departments.

The internationally recognized MBA is one of the most popular online degrees. Students can network with other business professionals while adding valuable business and people operations management skills.

Unlike a master’s in HR, which focuses on talent acquisition and development, an MBA emphasizes business management and leadership skills, making the degree more flexible. Princeton Review reports that graduates of MBA programs at top schools can realize a 250-325% return on investment (ROI) over the cost of tuition.

If you want to advance your career through a human resources MBA, use this guide to learn more about the degree, top education programs in the field, and available career pathways.

Why You Should Choose an MBA in Human Resources

An MBA in human resources can equip you with a blend of business acumen and specialized HR knowledge. In this program, you can develop skills in HR strategy, talent management, labor relations, and HR analytics. You may also gain valuable leadership, communication, and problem-solving skills.

After graduation, you should feel equipped to improve workforce efficiency, foster a positive work culture, and make strategic HR decisions that align with organizational goals. Moreover, the MBA credential enhances your credibility, potentially leading to salary increases across diverse industries.

Ultimately, your degree can help open the door to high-level HR positions, such as HR director or chief human resources officer. Networking opportunities within the program can facilitate career advancement by connecting you with influential HR professionals and business leaders.

An MBA in HR can empower graduates with the expertise and credentials to thrive in the competitive HR landscape and drive organizational success.

Featured Online Human Resources Programs

Learn about start dates, transferring credits, availability of financial aid, and more by contacting the universities below.

Loading...Learn More
Visit Site
Loading...Learn More
Visit Site
Loading...Learn More
Visit Site

Top Colleges With Human Resources MBA Programs

We have compiled a list of nonprofit and for-profit institutions that offer this four-year degree. Use the following table to compare tuition costs and student population sizes.

Colleges With MBAs in Human Resources
SchoolLocationTuitionStudent Population Size
University of Nebraska LincolnLincoln, Nebraska$675/credit48,862
University of Wisconsin WhitewaterWhitewater, Wisconsin$678/credit22,892
Union UniversityJackson, Tennessee$695/credit2,930
Averett UniversityDanville, Virginia$655/credit2,600
Maryville UniversitySaint Louis, Missouri$749/credit21,192
Anderson UniversityAnderson, South Carolina$565/credit4,117
Everglades UniversityBoca Raton, Florida$890/credit5,298
Purdue University GlobalIndianapolis, Indiana$485/credit33,192
Source: National Center for Education Statistics

3 Top Schools for an MBA in Human Resources

Anderson University

Anderson University, a Christian institution with 64 majors and 41 graduate programs, offers an MBA in human resources that students can earn entirely online or through hybrid delivery.

The program requires 45 credits, including 36 core and nine concentration credits. Courses include talent management; compensation and benefits; and six sigma, agile, and lean systems. Anderson students can finish their degrees in 18-30 months.

Each applicant needs a bachelor’s degree with a minimum 2.75 GPA from an accredited institution or a GMAT score exceeding 510. Anderson also expects candidates to possess related business experience.

Purdue University Global

Purdue University Global serves professionals and busy students through extensive distance education programs. The school’s online MBA offers seven concentration options, including human resources. Students complete 40-51 semester credits over two years to finish the program.

Courses include managing the value chain, business analytics, and economics for global decision-makers. Each course lasts 10 weeks, and learners should expect to spend 15 hours a week on each course. The university also allows each learner to apply their courses toward a JD from the Concord Law School to earn a master’s degree and a law degree in four years.

University of Wisconsin Whitewater

The University of Wisconsin Whitewater offers a fully online or on-campus MBA with a concentration in human resources. The degree requires 36-42 credits, and students choose full-time or part-time enrollment. Courses include ethics in the marketplace, labor-employee relations, and staffing and evaluation. Students may conclude their program with a six-credit thesis.

The school reports a 100% placement rate for human resources graduates. They have secured jobs with organizations such as KPMG, OshKosh, and Royal Capital Group. Applicants must have qualifying military service, approved work experience, a business-related bachelor’s degree, or a GMAT or GRE score that meets admission qualifications.

Is an MBA in Human Resources Worth It?

According to the National Center for Education Statistics, in-state graduate students at public institutions pay an average of $10,949 in tuition and fees each year. That number jumps to $20,420 for out-of-state students, while private, not-for-profit institutions charge grad students an average of $19,979 annually.

Payscale data from Sept. 2023 indicates that an MBA in human resource management brought in an average salary of $74,000 a year — $30,000 more than the annual salary of a bachelor’s degree in human resources. Note that the figure for bachelor’s-level graduates represents fewer than 50 respondents.

Along with a strong ROI, an MBA in human resources can provide you with a competitive edge in the job market and open doors to higher-level positions. It offers credibility and recognition among peers and potential employers, along with potentially qualifying you to apply for doctor of business administration or Ph.D. in business programs.

Common Questions About MBA Human Resources Programs

Can I work in human resources with an MBA?

A human resources MBA equips you with a strong foundation in business management along with specialized knowledge in talent management practices and strategies. With this degree, you can pursue several roles in people operations.

How much money can I make with an MBA in human resources?

According to Payscale data from Sept. 2023, people with MBAs in human resource management earn an annual average salary of $74,000. Directors and vice presidents of human resources typically earned much higher wages.

Is an MBA in human resources worth it?

The value of an MBA in human resources depends on your career goals. The degree may help grow your network, skills, or salary, but MBA programs can be expensive and time-consuming compared to HR certifications and other alternatives.

What is the highest position in HR?

The highest HR position depends on the size and structure of a given organization. Enterprise-level companies may have a chief human resources officer or a senior vice president of talent and people operations. Smaller organizations might employ a manager or director of human resources.