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The best online MBA programs give students the skills they need to assume leadership posititions in diverse industries.

Graduates of the top online MBA programs have many career opportunities and higher-than-average salary potential.

The Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) found that in 2013, business leaders with a master's degree earned substantially more than their peers with only a bachelor's degree. For example, professionals with a master's degree who worked in securities, commodities, and financial services earned median annual wages of $170,000, while professionals with just a bachelor's degree earned $90,000.

Table of Contents

This guide ranks the best online MBA programs to help students find the right programs for their needs. It also covers common courses and concentrations in addition to potential careers and salaries for graduates.

The Best Online MBA Programs

1
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4

Boston University 

Boston, MA

About this school

The Boston University Questrom School of Business partners with some of the largest companies in the country to develop new degrees and enhance existing programs, such as its online MBA program. BU works with edX, a leader in online learning technology, to offer the program 100% online.

The program emphasizes 21st-century business challenges and opportunities. Students take one 7.5-credit module each semester. Each module builds on the knowledge students gained during the previous semester. Modules include creating value for business and society, managing performance with data, managing risk, and leveraging global opportunities.

The workload for each module is the equivalent of taking two courses. Each week, learners log on to live video chats that last 2-3 hours. BU offers two of these sessions each week, so learners can choose the time that works best for them. Applicants need an accredited bachelor's degree.

School Type
Private Nonprofit
Graduation Rate
88%
Percent Receiving Loans
32%
Online Enrollment
15%
5

University of Virginia 

Charlottesville, VA

About this school

Founded by Thomas Jefferson in 1819, the University of Virginia offers a variety of undergraduate and graduate programs, including many online options. UVA's Darden School of Business offers two online MBA programs: executive MBA and global executive MBA (GEMBA).

Both programs combine on-campus residencies and online coursework. Core courses include decision analysis, global economies and markets, and leadership communication. Students can tailor the degree to their interests through electives on topics such as entrepreneurial thinking, mergers and acquisitions, and negotiations.

Degree candidates study, discuss, and solve business problems that mirror real-life issues that executives face. Students must attend weekend residencies on campus about once per month. GEMBA students also complete global residencies abroad. Online courses include live video meetings in the evenings. Students take courses in cohorts and graduate in 21 months.

UVA evaluates applicants on three areas: professional experience, academic success, and personal traits. Applicants must submit scores from the GRE, GMAT, or Executive Assessment.

School Type
Public Nonprofit
Graduation Rate
94%
Percent Receiving Loans
29%
Online Enrollment
9%
6

University of Iowa 

Iowa City, IA

About this school

The University of Iowa is the state's flagship university and serves more than 32,000 learners annually from 114 countries and 50 states. UI's Tippie College of Business offers a flexible, online MBA program.

The 45-credit program comprises 15 courses. Core courses include business integration, corporate financial reporting, business integration, and marketing management. Students take 15 credits of electives that span four areas of business: entrepreneurship, marketing, management and leadership, and finance.

MBA students can optionally earn certificates in leadership, finance, or marketing. Full-time learners who do not add certificates can earn the degree in two years. The curriculum blends asynchronous and synchronous components. Synchronous components take place during the evening to accommodate working students.

UI offers three start days per year. Applicants must submit a resume, transcripts, GRE or GMAT scores, a personal essay, and professional recommendations. Some candidates may qualify for GRE/GMAT waivers.

School Type
Public Nonprofit
Graduation Rate
73%
Percent Receiving Loans
47%
Online Enrollment
25%
7

University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign 

Champaign, IL

About this school

University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign is the main campus for U of I and the state's flagship university. Illinois serves more than 47,000 learners through its undergraduate and graduate programs. The school's fully online iMBA program offers four core specializations: strategic leadership and management, managerial economics and business analysis, value chain management, and financial management.

Each core specialization includes three courses and a capstone experience. Students also choose two additional specializations from options such as global challenges in business, innovation, business analytics, and digital marketing. The program uses mostly asynchronous coursework, but students must attend occasional live online meetings.

Applicants need an accredited bachelor's degree with a minimum 3.0 GPA and at least three years of professional experience.

School Type
Public Nonprofit
Graduation Rate
84%
Percent Receiving Loans
40%
Online Enrollment
28%
8

Carnegie Mellon University 

Pittsburgh, PA

About this school

Carnegie Mellon University is a leading research institution that hosts more than 14,500 students through diverse undergraduate and graduate programs. CMU's Tepper School of Business prepares graduates to lead through business, analytics, and technology skills, making it one of the few STEM-designated online MBA programs.

The core curriculum includes courses in corporate strategy, financial statement analysis, and statistical decision-making. Students must pursue at least one concentration, but can choose up to four. Options include sustainability, operations research, organizational behavior, and business technologies.

The program uses a mix of synchronous and asynchronous coursework. Students must attend access weekends on campus in Pittsburgh between each term. Students must enroll part time.

Applicants must hold an accredited bachelor's degree and submit an essay, a current resume, one professional recommendation, GMAT or GRE scores, and unofficial transcripts. While Tepper accepts GRE scores, the school prefers GMAT results.

School Type
Private Nonprofit
Graduation Rate
89%
Percent Receiving Loans
35%
Online Enrollment
11%
9

Syracuse University 

Syracuse, NY

About this school

Syracuse University is a private research institution that offers more than 200 undergraduate majors and 200 graduate degrees. Syracuse's Martin J. Whitman School of Management offers one of the best online MBA programs in the country.

The 54-credit program includes 35 core business credits, 15 elective credits, and three residency credits. Core courses include data analysis and decision-making, global entrepreneurship, and legal and ethical environment of business. Students can use electives to complete one of six specializations: accounting, supply chain management, business analytics, marketing management, entrepreneurship, or finance.

Students must complete three in-person residencies on the Syracuse campus or at business hubs around the world. Courses use a mix of synchronous and asynchronous components. Students can graduate in two years of full-time study.

Applicants need at least one year of full-time work experience and a bachelor's degree from an accredited school. They must also submit transcripts and GMAT or GRE scores. Students with more than five years of full-time corporate work experience can apply for a GMAT/GRE waiver.

School Type
Private Nonprofit
Graduation Rate
83%
Percent Receiving Loans
46%
Online Enrollment
29%
10

University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill 

Chapel Hill, NC

About this school

The University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill is a liberal arts institution that offers a variety of undergraduate and graduate programs. UNC - Chapel Hill's Kenan-Flagler Business School offers an online MBA program that prepares graduates to lead diverse organizations.

The 62-credit program includes nine required courses and two in-person summits. Required courses include strategic evonomics, analytical tools for decision-making, and business communication. Students can use electives to pursue one of five concentrations: marketing, data analytics and decision-making, entrepreneurship, finance, or strategy and consulting.

Learners can choose whether to complete the in-person summits on campus in Chapel Hill or in cities around the world. All other components of this degree take place online. Most learners take two courses per quarter and finish in two years.

Applicants must hold an accredited bachelor's degree and submit a resume, transcripts, GRE or GMAT scores, an essay, and two letters of recommendation. Some applicants may qualify for GRE/GMAT waivers.

School Type
Public Nonprofit
Graduation Rate
89%
Percent Receiving Loans
28%
Online Enrollment
11%
11

George Washington University 

Washington, DC

About this school

Established by an act of Congress in 1821, George Washington University hosts students through a variety of undergraduate and graduate programs. The GW School of Business offers 13 specialized degrees, five MBA programs, and 24 certificates.

The school's fully online MBA comprises 55.5 credits. The core business curriculum includes courses in business ethics and public policy, microeconomics for the world economy, managerial accounting, and organizations and human capital. Students can tailor the degree to their interests through a variety of electives.

The fully online program also offers optional in-person intensives in Washington, D.C., and around the world. Students must enroll part time. Classes require live video sessions each week. GW also offers an online MBA in healthcare for learners interested in that field.

Applicants must hold a bachelor's degree and submit a resume, letters of recommendation, GRE or GMAT scores, and transcripts. They must also complete an admission interview.

School Type
Private Nonprofit
Graduation Rate
82%
Percent Receiving Loans
43%
Online Enrollment
30%
12

University of Florida 

Gainesville, FL

About this school

The University of Florida is a research institution that offers diverse undergraduate and graduate programs, including many online options. UF's Warrington College of Business is divided into three schools, including the Hough Graduate School of Business, which offers an online MBA for working professionals.

Students can choose from an accelerated one-year track or a traditional two-year track. The two-year program comprises 48 credits, including foundational business courses. The one-year program comprises 32 credits and bypasses foundational business courses, beginning with advanced classes. Both tracks are taught entirely online, but students can complete optional intensive residencies, career transformation weekends, and global immersion experiences.

Applicants to the one-year track need a bachelor's degree in business earned within the preceding seven years. They also need prerequisites in areas like business finance, principles of management, and statistics for business decisions. Applicants for both tracks must submit transcripts, GMAT scores, a resume, recommendations, and a personal essay. Candidates also need at least two years of full-time work experience.

School Type
Public Nonprofit
Graduation Rate
90%
Percent Receiving Loans
19%
Online Enrollment
21%
13

University of Arizona 

Tucson, AZ

About this school

Established in 1895, the University of Arizona is the state's flagship university and offers more than 250 undergraduate and graduate degrees. UArizona's Eller College of Management offers undergraduate, master's, and doctoral degrees in business, including an online MBA.

The 45-credit program includes 28 core credits and 17 elective credits. Core courses include business strategy, survey of finance as a corporate manager, managing ethics in organizations, and marketing of innovations. Students choose electives based on their concentrations, of which there are six options: marketing, entrepreneurship, privacy and security, finance, management and organizations, and healthcare management.

The fully online program uses eight-week, asynchronous courses. Students can pursue optional global experiences in areas like Brazil and Singapore.

Students can begin on one of six start dates per year. Applicants must submit a comprehensive essay, GMAT or GRE scores, three letters of recommendation, transcripts, and a professional resume. They must also complete an admission interview.

School Type
Public Nonprofit
Graduation Rate
64%
Percent Receiving Loans
36%
Online Enrollment
24%
14

Purdue University 

West Lafayette, IN

About this school

Established in 1871, Purdue University offers a variety of undergraduate and graduate programs, including more than 200 online programs. Purdue's Krannert School of Management offers a flexible, online MBA program.

The 48-credit program includes core courses on topics like business analytics, managerial economics, managing behavior in organizations, and operations management. Students pursue one of three specializations: innovation and technology commercialization; leadership, negotiation, and change management; or business analytics. The curriculum also incorporates an experiential project and a capstone course.

The fully online program has asynchronous courses, providing students with maximum flexibility. Applicants must hold an accredited bachelor's degree and submit a statement of purpose, an essay, two letters of recommendation, a resume, transcripts, and GMAT scores (waived for some applicants). Candidates must also complete an interview.

School Type
Public Nonprofit
Graduation Rate
81%
Percent Receiving Loans
34%
Online Enrollment
20%
15

University of Utah 

Salt Lake City, UT

About this school

The University of Utah offers a variety of undergraduate and graduate programs, including many online options. The university's David Eccles School of Business offers 34 degrees and boasts an 85% job-placement rate for graduates. On average, graduates from the school's online MBA program enjoy salary increases of 34%.

Students complete 33 credits of core courses on topics like information technology, marketing management, business communications, and data analysis. Students also take 15 elective credits, which they can use to pursue optional specializations in information systems or business analytics.

The program's only in-person requirement is a three-day, on-campus residency during the first year. However, students can optionally participate in international business trips to places like New Delhi, Buenos Aires, and Shanghai. Students typically graduate in two years.

Applicants need an accredited bachelor's degree with a minimum 3.0 and at least one year of work experience. They must also submit GRE or GMAT scores and transcripts.

School Type
Public Nonprofit
Graduation Rate
70%
Percent Receiving Loans
30%
Online Enrollment
4%
16

University of Maryland—College Park 

College Park, MD

About this school

Established in 1856, the University of Maryland, College Park hosts students through both undergraduate and graduate programs. UMD's Robert H. Smith School of Business offers many innovative learning programs, including an online MBA.

The program has core, concentration, and residency requirements. Core courses include managerial accounting, the global economic environment, decision modeling, and entrepreneurship. Students pursue one of six concentrations: general business, accounting, finance, information systems and business analytics, marketing, or supply chain management.

Students also complete a three-day, on-campus, intensive residency at the beginning of the program. Learners culminate the degree with a capstone course. Applicants must hold an accredited bachelor's degree and submit GRE or GMAT scores, transcripts, an essay, and one letter of recommendation.

School Type
Public Nonprofit
Graduation Rate
86%
Percent Receiving Loans
31%
Online Enrollment
9%
17

University of Missouri 

Columbia, MO

About this school

The University of Missouri offers undergraduate, graduate, and certificate programs, including more than 125 fully online programs operated through Mizzou Online. The school's Robert J. Trulaske, Sr. College of Business offers a flexible, online MBA program.

This 48-credit executive MBA program includes courses in corporate governance, business environment and strategy, and innovation and corporate entrepreneurship. In addition to online courses, students must complete four two-day, on-campus residencies. Learners also complete one international residency.

More than half of learners earn promotions while they complete the program. Degree candidates take two courses every eight weeks and graduate in 21 months. Online students can access career coaching, webinars, and workshops.

New cohorts begin in August. Applicants need five years of professional experience and an accredited bachelor's degree.

School Type
Public Nonprofit
Graduation Rate
69%
Percent Receiving Loans
44%
Online Enrollment
30%
18

University of Kansas 

Lawrence, KS

About this school

Established in 1866, the University of Kansas is the state's flagship school, serving more than 28,500 students each year. The School of Business joined KU in 1924 and offers a variety of programs, including an online MBA.

This 42-credit program includes courses in finance, managing people, marketing, and international business. Students choose from electives in three areas of business: finance, management and leadership, and marketing. The curriculum concludes with a six-credit capstone course that synthesizes degree knowledge and skills.

Students take one eight-week course at a time, graduating in just over two years. The program includes live chats and video conferences with other learners. Learners can begin on one of three start dates per year.

Applicants need a bachelor's degree with a preferred minimum 3.0 GPA and two years of work experience. They must also submit transcripts, GMAT scores, a personal statement, a resume, and three letters of recommendation.

School Type
Public Nonprofit
Graduation Rate
65%
Percent Receiving Loans
47%
Online Enrollment
18%
19

University of Massachusetts—Amherst 

Amherst, MA

About this school

The University of Massachusetts Amherst is commonwealth's flagship university and hosts more than 31,000 learners each year. UMass Amherst's Isenberg School of Management awarded its first MBAs in 1953 to just three graduates. Today, the school offers several undergraduate and graduate business degrees, including an online MBA.

The program includes core courses in business law, operations management, corporate finance, and organizational strategy. Students use electives to pursue one of five focus areas: marketing, business analytics, healthcare administration, entrepreneurship, or finance. The fully online program uses asynchronous courses. However, students can also choose to take some courses on campus, either in Amherst or at one of the school's satellite locations.

The program offers three start days each year. Applicants need at least three years of professional experience and an accredited bachelor's degree. They must also submit a resume, two letters of recommendation, GMAT or GRE scores, official transcripts, and a personal essay.

School Type
Public Nonprofit
Graduation Rate
80%
Percent Receiving Loans
57%
Online Enrollment
34%
20

William Marsh Rice University 

Houston, TX

About this school

William Marsh Rice University is a comprehensive research institution that boasts a 6-to-1 student-to-faculty ratio. The school offers undergraduate and graduate degrees through its various colleges, including the Jones Graduate School of Business, which offers a hybrid MBA.

The program includes 18 core business courses, 10 elective classes, and 4-6 field experiences. Required business classes include business analytics, corporate social responsibility, economic environment of business, and business-government relations. Learners culminate the degree with a capstone course.

To fulfill field experience requirements, students choose between Intensive Learning Experiences (ILEs) or Global Field Experiences (GFEs). ILEs take place on the Rice campus in Houston, while GFEs take place in cities around the world. The rest of the program uses synchronous, online coursework.

The hybrid MBA offers four start dates per year. Applicants must hold an accredited bachelor's degree and submit an essay, GMAT or GRE scores, and official transcripts.

School Type
Private Nonprofit
Graduation Rate
95%
Percent Receiving Loans
15%
Online Enrollment
1%
21

College of William and Mary 

Williamsburg, VA

About this school

One of eight public Ivy schools in the country, William & Mary offers a variety of undergraduate and graduate programs, many of which students can complete online. Its Raymond A. Mason School of Business offers an online MBA that comprises 49 credits.

Students in the online MBA program complete 12 required courses on topics like management, integrated technology, organizational behavior, and leadership for the 21st century. Learners culminate the degree with a practicum in which they identify a "wicked problem," address the problem with the skills they learned, and report on the results. Students may also choose to add a certificate in business analytics to the degree.

Students complete 7.5-week, online classes. The only in-person requirement is one on-campus weekend residency. Applicants need a bachelor's degree from an accredited school and at least two years of professional work experience. W&M does not require GMAT or GRE scores.

School Type
Public Nonprofit
Graduation Rate
91%
Percent Receiving Loans
25%
22

University of Cincinnati 

Cincinnati, OH

About this school

The University of Cincinnati hosts 46,000 learners through 414 academic programs and has a student-to-teacher ratio of just 16-to-1. UC Online partners with the Lindner College of Business to offer a flexible, online MBA program.

This 38-48-credit program includes core courses in managing across cultures, systematic innovation tools, marketing for managers, and buyer behavior. Students use electives to pursue concentrations in areas like healthcare administration, individual taxation, healthcare finance, and corporate taxation.

The fully online program features asynchronous courses. Online learners can access an online library, technical support, and career development services. Students with undergraduate degrees in business or significant professional experience may apply to waive up to 10 credits from the core curriculum.

Applicants need a bachelor's degree from a regionally accredited university with a minimum 3.0 GPA. The school also requires GMAT or GRE scores unless applicants qualify for waivers through a combination of academic performance and work experience.

School Type
Public Nonprofit
Graduation Rate
68%
Percent Receiving Loans
52%
Online Enrollment
34%
23

Temple University 

Philadelphia, PA

About this school

Established in 1884, Temple University is a top-tier research institution that hosts about 40,000 learners annually through more than 500 academic programs. One of 17 schools and colleges at Temple, the Fox School of Business offers an online MBA with a customizable curriculum.

Students take core and concentration courses. Core courses include legal and ethical foundations of business, managing risk, and business strategy in a global environment. Learners can choose from 16 12-credit concentrations, including corporate compliance, governance, and regulatory policy; enterprise risk management; sport business; and international management.

In addition to coursework, learners must complete three professional development workshops and three academic development workshops. Temple offers these workshops in a variety of modalities, and the topics change regularly. Previous topics have included data visualization, personal branding, and lunch/coffee with leaders. Once students complete workshops and other required courses, they may register for the capstone course.

Each course spans five weeks. Learners attend one-week residencies at the beginning of the first semester, but all other coursework takes place online.

School Type
Public Nonprofit
Graduation Rate
73%
Percent Receiving Loans
69%
Online Enrollment
12%
24

Howard University 

Washington, DC

About this school

General Oliver O. Howard founded Howard University in 1867. The historically black university began offering business programs in 1870. Today, students can pursue a flexible, online MBA program through the School of Business.

The 42-credit executive MBA starts with a noncredit, three-week orientation. After the orientation, students take required courses in financial management, strategic communications, applied economics for executives, and creating value through the supply chain. Students culminate the degree with a capstone course in strategic management that requires an on-campus presentation. Learners can also pursue optional study abroad opportunities.

Full-time students can graduate in 18 months. Candidates need an accredited bachelor's degree and at least seven years of professional experience, including at least five years in a leadership role, to apply.

School Type
Private Nonprofit
Graduation Rate
62%
Percent Receiving Loans
62%
Online Enrollment
1%
25

Florida State University 

Tallahassee, FL

About this school

Established in 1851, Florida State University is the oldest continuously operating institution of higher education in Florida. FSU's College of Business offers 23 academic programs, including an online MBA.

The 39-credit program includes core courses in financial reporting and managerial control, strategy and business policy, marketing strategy in the global environment, and information and technology management. Degree candidates earn 12 elective credits, including nine in a specialization. Specialization options include business analytics, risk management and insurance, management information systems, and real estate. Some specializations require department approval.

This fully online MBA is only available for part-time learners. All online students pay the same tuition rate regardless of residency.

The admissions board evaluates candidates based on leadership experience, previous college coursework, GRE or GMAT scores, and letters of recommendation. Applicants with significant management experience, bachelor's degrees from accredited business schools, or other master's degrees may qualify for GRE/GMAT waivers.

School Type
Public Nonprofit
Graduation Rate
83%
Percent Receiving Loans
32%
Online Enrollment
21%
26

Louisiana State University 

Baton Rouge, LA

About this school

Founded in 1860, Louisiana State University and A&M College is the state's largest higher learning institution, enrolling more than 30,000 students each year. The LSU system encompasses eight physical locations and an online campus. LSU Online offers more than 50 graduate, undergraduate, certificate, and credentialing programs.

LSU offers its online MBA through the E.J. Ourso College of Business. The 36-credit degree includes core, elective, and specialization courses. Students can choose from specializations in emerging technology or data analytics. Core course topics include managerial statistics, financial accounting, and legal environment of business. LSU's Department of Entrepreneurship and Information Systems offers analytics elective courses exclusively for distance learners.

MBA students with certifications, such as the CFP or PMP, may earn up to six credits toward the degree through LSU's prior learning assessment. Applicants with three years of work experience and a minimum 3.0 GPA may waive the GMAT admission requirement. Students typically take one seven-week course at a time, though students may take two courses at a time. Students can begin on one of six start dates per year. All online students pay the same tuition rate regardless of residency.

School Type
Public Nonprofit
Graduation Rate
67%
Percent Receiving Loans
36%
Online Enrollment
17%
27

University of Miami 

Coral Gables, FL

About this school

Established in 1925, the University of Miami hosts more than 17,000 students annually from all 50 states and 121 countries. Students can choose from more than 180 graduate and undergraduate programs across 11 schools and colleges, including eight online master's degrees offered through UOnline.

UM offers an online MBA progra through its Division of Continuing and International Education. The program comprisees 42-51 credits with optional specialiations in corporate finance, financial decision-making, or accounting practice.

Though the MBA programs at UM can be completed entirely online, students can attend an optional one-week immersive residency on campus or an on-campus orientation and tour. Each program follows a suggested sequence of one course at a time in core subjects including management, accounting, and marketing, typically culminating in a strategic management capstone course.

Students can complete the online MBA in 24-28 months. Courses span seven weeks. Applicants must submit official transcripts, two letters of recommendation, and GMAT scores. Students can begin in the fall, spring, or summer. All online students pay the same per-credit tuition rate regardless of residency. Military and veteran students enjoy a tuition discount.

School Type
Private Nonprofit
Graduation Rate
82%
Percent Receiving Loans
29%
Online Enrollment
8%
28

George Mason University 

Fairfax, VA

About this school

As the largest public research college in Virginia, George Mason University enrolls more than 37,000 students annually from all 50 states and 130 countries. Students can choose from more than 50 online graduate, undergraduate, and certificate programs across 10 colleges, including an online MBA.

The 48-credit program has four primary study areas: collaborative communication and leadership, knowledge of functional business disciplines, analytical decision-making, and contemporary issues in business. The part-time program includes required and elective courses, culminating in a strategic management capstone requirement. Students can optionally take a global residency course — which requires a week-long study-abroad experience — or complete a graduate certificate in business analytics.

Mason accepts applications on a rolling basis. Applicants must submit official transcripts demonstrating a minimum 3.0 GPA, a resume, two letters of recommendation, a statement of purpose, and GMAT or GRE scores. Applicants also need at least two years of professional experience. Distance learners complete courses asynchronously, with most students graduating in less than three years.

School Type
Public Nonprofit
Graduation Rate
70%
Percent Receiving Loans
53%
Online Enrollment
13%
29

Indiana University—Bloomington 

Bloomington, IN

About this school

Indiana University Bloomington belongs to a system of 10 campuses statewide. The school's online division, IU Online, offers more than 135 graduate and undergraduate programs. U.S. News & World Report ranked IU's online MBA as first in the nation in 2020.

The 54-credit, online MBA program uses a highly customizable format. Students complete coursework across four modules: core, business fundamentals, Kelley connect, and integrated core. Core and business fundamentals courses cover key business functions, quantitative analysis, and managing accounting information for decision-making.

Students can choose from seven specializations to customize the degree: business analytics, entrepreneurship and innovation, finance, global supply chain management, information technology management, marketing, or strategic management.

Students can also choose an immersive experience to further customize the degree. Immersive experience options include a global business experience in places like New York, New Delhi, India, or IU's Washington campus; an online global perspectives course; or professional development electives.

Students can begin in the fall or spring. Applicants must submit official transcripts, a resume, a personal statement, recommendations, and GMAT or GRE scores. They must also complete an admission interview.

School Type
Public Nonprofit
Graduation Rate
78%
Percent Receiving Loans
35%
Online Enrollment
26%
30

American University 

Washington, DC

About this school

Chartered in 1893, American University promotes service-learning programs across eight academic schools and colleges. The school hosts more than 14,000 students annually from all 50 states and more than 130 countries. AU's Kogod School of Business offers an online MBA that was recently ranked among the best in the nation by the Princeton Review.

The online MBA program includes traditional and accelerated tracks, enabling students to graduate in as little as one year. Students can choose from six focus areas: business analytics, consulting, finance, cybersecurity, legal studies, or marketing. Students can also create their own focus area through elective courses.

The online MBA requires 48 credits and includes two in-person immersion experiences. AU always hosts one of the required immersions in Washington, D.C., and the second at an international location. Students can optionally complete an analytics certificate concurrently with the online MBA.

The online MBA offers 24-month, 15-month, 18-month, and 12-month tracks. The business school accepts applications on a rolling basis and offers four start dates per year. Applicants must hold a bachelor's degree from an accredited institution and submit transcripts, letters of recommendation, a resume, and a personal statement. AU offers an optional bridge to business course to fulfill core prerequisites toward the online MBA.

School Type
Private Nonprofit
Graduation Rate
80%
Percent Receiving Loans
56%
Online Enrollment
8%
31

North Carolina State University at Raleigh 

Raleigh, NC

About this school

Founded in 1887, North Carolina State University at Raleigh began as an agriculture and engineering land-grant institution. Today, NC State occupies a physical campus in North Carolina's high-tech "research triangle" and has a comprehensive online division. The university enrolls more than 36,000 students annually, making it the state's largest college. Online students at NC State can choose from more than 100 degrees and thousands of courses.

The 40-credit, online MBA program offers five emphasis areas: financial management, innovation management, marketing management, supply chain management, or technology entrepreneurship and commercialization. Students can optionally add a certificate in an emphasis area. The online MBA also requires a sequence of core and elective coursework and two three-day residencies on campus in Raleigh.

NC State ranks among the best online MBA programs in the nation, according to U.S. News & World Report. Applicants must submit GRE/GMAT test scores. NC State accepts new students in the fall and spring semesters.

School Type
Public Nonprofit
Graduation Rate
81%
Percent Receiving Loans
47%
Online Enrollment
21%
32

Auburn University 

Auburn, AL

About this school

Established in 1856 as the first land-grant college in the South, Auburn University enrolls more than 30,000 graduate and undergraduate students annually. Auburn offers more than 140 majors across 15 schools and colleges, including more than 40 online degrees, courses, and professional programs.

Auburn's online MBA program includes an optional in-person orientation and a global immersion course in an international location. The program requires 13 core and elective courses, covering topics like quantitative analysis, marketing and consumer theory, and operations excellence. Students culminate the degree with a capstone business case project.

Students typically take two classes per semester, graduating in 2.5 years. However, students can take up to six years to complete the degree. Distance learners may earn a degree concurrent with the MBA, including a master of finance, a master of science in information systems, or a master of industrial and systems engineering. Both U.S. News & World Report and the Princeton Review have ranked Auburn among the top MBA programs in the nation.

New students can attend orientation on campus or online. Applicants must submit unofficial transcripts, a resume, letters of recommendation, and GRE/GMAT test scores. Students can begin the online MBA in the fall or spring semester.

School Type
Public Nonprofit
Graduation Rate
78%
Percent Receiving Loans
32%
Online Enrollment
21%
33

Wayne State University 

Detroit, MI

About this school

Established in 1868, Wayne State University boasts one of the most diverse student populations in the country, hosting more than 27,000 students from all 50 states and 80 countries. Students can choose from nearly 350 graduate and undergraduate programs across 14 schools and colleges.

WSU offers its online MBA through the Mike Ilitch School of Business. The curriculum includes 36 credits and 12 courses, including foundation, core, and elective requirements. Students can choose from 11 optional concentrations: accounting systems, entrepreneurship and innovation, finance, financial accounting, global supply chain management, human resources, information systems management, international business, management, marketing, and sport and entertainment management.

Students must complete foundational prerequisites, like introduction to accounting, marketing foundations, and college-level math, before progressing to core coursework. Core topics include corporate financial management, marketing strategy, and strategic management. Students can optionally complete concurrent law degrees through WSU's dual J.D./MBA program.

WSU offers accelerated course options for online MBA students. Distance learners may qualify for institutional scholarships specifically for business students. WSU also offers graduate admissions and career placement offices dedicated to MBA students.

School Type
Public Nonprofit
Graduation Rate
47%
Percent Receiving Loans
49%
Online Enrollment
15%
34

Oregon State University 

Corvallis, OR

About this school

Oregon State University is one of only two in the U.S. to earn the designation of land-, sea-, space-, and sun-grant institution. Students at OSU can choose from more than 200 undergraduate and 100 graduate programs across 11 colleges. OSU's Ecampus hosts over 24,000 online learners annually through more than 70 degrees and programs.

The 60-credit, online MBA program offers concentrations in business analytics, supply chain and logistics management, organizational leadership, and marketing. Regardless of concentration, all learners study core topics like operations management, managerial decision tools, and business legal environment.

Students who recently completed an undergraduate business program or otherwise satisfied prerequisites in core concepts may bypass some core MBA requirements. Students culminate the degree with a capstone or an integrated project in their concentration.

OSU designed its online MBA to span 30 months, though students can pursue a 21-month accelerated program. Applicants must hold a bachelor's degree from a regionally accredited institution and submit GRE or GMAT scores.

School Type
Public Nonprofit
Graduation Rate
67%
Percent Receiving Loans
52%
Online Enrollment
24%
35

Ohio University 

Athens, OH

About this school

Established in 1804, Ohio University is the nation's ninth-oldest public university. OU enrolls more than 35,000 students through hundreds of graduate, undergraduate, and certificate programs across 10 academic schools. OU's online MBA and College of Business are highly ranked among national programs for value and quality.

The 35-credit, online MBA program emphasizes contemporary, practical business skills. Students can choose from eight concentrations: finance; healthcare; executive management; business analytics; operations and supply chain management; accounting; strategic selling and sales leadership; and business venturing and entrepreneurship.

Distance learners take core courses in strategic marketing, organizational behavior and human resource management, and descriptive analytics, culminating in an applied business experience capstone. Each term spans seven weeks with two terms per semester. Most students complete the degree in six semesters.

Applicants need a bachelor's degree from a regionally accredited institution with a minimum 3.0 GPA and at least two years of professional experience. Students may not apply transfer credits toward the online MBA.

School Type
Public Nonprofit
Graduation Rate
64%
Percent Receiving Loans
66%
Online Enrollment
42%
36

University of Nebraska—Lincoln 

Lincoln, NE

About this school

Chartered in 1869, the University of Nebraska at Lincoln enrolls more than 25,500 students from all 50 states and 136 countries annually. Students can choose from dozens of online graduate, undergraduate, and certificate programs, including an online MBA program that comprises 48 credits.

Students complete interdisciplinary coursework in business, finance, and management. The curriculum emphasizes practical skills in areas like team-building, ethics, and leadership. Students can choose from the following specializations: finance, international business, supply chain management, business analytics, or marketing.

Students can also pursue a concurrent graduate certificate in supply chain management or business analytics. Core courses explore topics like managerial economics, introduction to business strategy, and strategic management and business policy.

Students complete most coursework asynchronously. Applicants must hold a bachelor's degree with at least a 3.0 GPA and submit GRE or GMAT scores. The school prefers applicants with at least one year of work experience. UNL charges the same per-credit tuition rate for all online students regardless of state of residence.

School Type
Public Nonprofit
Graduation Rate
69%
Percent Receiving Loans
46%
Online Enrollment
27%
37

University of Mississippi 

University, MS

About this school

Home to more than 24,000 students, the University of Mississippi is the largest school in Mississippi and one of the fastest-growing in the nation. Founded in 1848, Ole Miss has an R1 Carnegie classification and offers dozens of graduate and undergraduate programs across 10 academic schools. The university's online MBA program repeatedly ranks among U.S. News & World Report's best online MBA programs in the nation.

The online MBA comprises 36 credits and emphasizes leadership, communication, and critical thinking skills. Courses cover topics like financial analysis, business planning and entrepreneurship, and project analysis. Students culminate the degree with a strategic management capstone course.

Students can transfer up to six credits toward the degree. The online MBA requires prerequisite coursework in introduction to accounting and business finance. Applicants must hold a bachelor's degree from a regionally accredited institution and submit GRE or GMAT scores. Students can begin in the fall, spring, or summer.

School Type
Public Nonprofit
Graduation Rate
64%
Percent Receiving Loans
41%
Online Enrollment
12%
38

Stevens Institute of Technology 

Hoboken, NJ

About this school

Named for "America's first family of inventors," Stevens Institute of Technology opened in 1870 with a mechanical engineering program. Today, Stevens enrolls more than 7,000 students annually through nearly 200 graduate, undergraduate, and certificate programs across four schools. Students can choose from more than 20 online master's degrees, including one of the nation's best online MBA programs, according to U.S. News & World Report.

This online MBA is a tech-centric program that includes prerequisites in financial management, financial and managerial accounting, and economics for managers. Additionally, students complete courses in core modules, including the language of business, leadership and innovation, and analytical thinking. Students can pursue one of the following concentrations: corporate innovation, finance, information systems, or project management.

Students can choose one of three capstone courses to close the degree: a practicum in technology commercialization, a field consulting program, or an application and integration of technology management project. Stevens accepts applications for the online MBA on a rolling basis, with start dates in the spring, fall, and summer. Applicants must submit GRE or GMAT scores.

School Type
Private Nonprofit
Graduation Rate
87%
Percent Receiving Loans
67%
Online Enrollment
16%
39

Washington State University 

Pullman, WA

About this school

Founded in 1890, Washington State University is the state's original land-grant institution. WSU enrolls nearly 21,000 students annually across its five campuses, extension center, and online division. Students can choose from over 30 online graduate, undergraduate, and certificate programs, including one of the nation's best online MBA programs, according to U.S. News & World Report.

WSU's online MBA program delivers a broad curriculum in strategic business with a global focus. The 36-credit program comprises core, concentration, and elective courses. Students can select concentrations in marketing, finance, international business, or hospitality business management. Students can optionally earn a graduate certificate in any of these concentration areas.

Distance learners can choose to participate in an international field study. The online MBA culminates in a three-course capstone project and presentation. Mosts students graduate in about two years.

Applicants must hold a bachelor's degree from a regionally accredited institution and submit GMAT scores. Students without a bachelor's degree in business may need to complete 16 credits of prerequisite courses. WSU accepts applications on a rolling basis and admits students in the fall, spring, and summer.

School Type
Public Nonprofit
Graduation Rate
59%
Percent Receiving Loans
44%
Online Enrollment
18%
40

Marquette University 

Milwaukee, WI

About this school

Founded in the tradition of the Society of Jesus, Marquette University is among Wisconsin's premier Catholic Jesuit colleges. Students can choose from over 150 undergraduate and graduate programs across 11 academic colleges. Marquette's Graduate School of Management offers multiple nationally ranked online MBA programs.

Marquette's online MBA requires 33-39 credits, depending on the student's undergraduate experience in business administration. Prerequisites include coursework in marketing, accounting, information systems, economics, finance, and supply chain management. Students must also complete foundational and elective courses in subjects like business analytics, concepts for ethical business practice, and corporate social responsibility, culminating in a strategic capstone project.

Marquette accepts applications on a rolling basis and admits students in the fall and spring. Applicants must submit GRE or GMAT scores and official transcripts. Marquette charges the same per-credit tuition rate for all online students, regardless of residency. Most students take two courses per term. While not required, advisors recommend that applicants have a minimum of two years of work experience. Marquette also offers an accelerated executive MBA, which requires weekend sessions on campus in addition to online coursework.

School Type
Private Nonprofit
Graduation Rate
85%
Percent Receiving Loans
51%
Online Enrollment
3%
41

Drexel University 

Philadelphia, PA

About this school

Founded in 1891, Drexel University has three Philadelphia campuses and one of the nation's first distance learning portals, Drexel Online. As one of the country's largest private research colleges, Drexel enrolls roughly 25,000 students annually, including nearly 4,700 online students. The school offers over 200 graduate, undergraduate, and certificate programs across 15 colleges and schools.

Drexel's online MBA, offered through its LeBow School of Business, ranks high among U.S. News & World Report's top-rated MBA programs. The 49-credit program comprises core, concentration, and elective courses. Students also complete an experiential requirement, choosing from options like an internship, seminar, or consulting project. The program offers concentrations in business analytics, entrepreneurship and innovation management, finance, marketing, or a self-designed concentration.

Students who take at least six credits per term can complete the degree in 18-24 months. Other students may take up to five years to earn the online MBA. While students complete most courses online as part of a cohort, they must complete an initial on-campus residency and a midpoint residency. Additionally, students can optionally participate in an international residency.

School Type
Private Nonprofit
Graduation Rate
74%
Percent Receiving Loans
61%
Online Enrollment
10%
42

University of Maine 

Orono, ME

About this school

The state's only public research college, the University of Maine originated as the Maine College of Agriculture and the Mechanic Arts in 1862. Today, UMaine enrolls more than 11,000 students annually from 49 states and 62 countries. Students can choose from over 100 graduate, undergraduate, and certificate programs, including more than 40 available through UMaine Online.

UMaine's online MBA comprises 30 credits and ranks among the best MBA programs in the nation, according to U.S. News & World Report. Through core and elective coursework, students build skills in communication, strategic thinking, problem-solving, and leadership. The online MBA offers concentrations in accounting, business analytics, and finance. While not required, students may also use two electives to pursue options like an MBA internship, an international field study, or an independent study project.

Applicants must submit GRE or GMAT scores from the last five years. Additionally, prospective students need a bachelor's degree and a minimum 3.0 GPA, though UMaine prefers applicants with a GPA of at least 3.5. Prospective MBA students must also complete prerequisites in accounting, principles of management, and micro- and macroeconomics. While UMaine charges tuition rates based on residency, nonresidents enrolled exclusively in online classes receive a discounted rate.

School Type
Public Nonprofit
Graduation Rate
60%
Percent Receiving Loans
66%
Online Enrollment
23%
43

Kansas State University 

Manhattan, KS

About this school

Founded in 1863, Kansas State University enrolls more than 22,000 graduate and undergraduate students each year. Students can choose from more than 400 graduate, undergraduate, and certificate programs. K-State boasts a 97% job placement rate for bachelor's and master's degree graduates.

K-State's professional, online MBA comprises 30-36 credits, depending on the student's undergraduate background. Distance learners must satisfy prerequisites in undergraduate economics, statistics, and math before taking MBA courses. The program includes core and elective courses on topics like management, general business administration, economics, accounting, and finance. Students culminate the degree with a business capstone requirement.

Learners complete most courses online, but they must also attend a two-day orientation on campus, a professional development and learning seminar on campus, and a faculty-led international travel experience. Courses span eight weeks, and students can begin on one of four start dates per year. Applicants with a GPA of 3.5 or higher may waive the application fee. Applicants with a minimum 3.0 GPA can waive the GMAT score requirement.

School Type
Public Nonprofit
Graduation Rate
64%
Percent Receiving Loans
48%
Online Enrollment
29%
44

University of Delaware 

Newark, DE

About this school

Established in 1743, the University of Delaware is one of the nation's oldest colleges. UD enrolls more than 24,000 students through 300 graduate, undergraduate, and certificate programs across eight academic colleges. Among the oldest divisions at UD, the Alfred Lerner College of Business & Economics offers one of the nation's best online MBA programs, according to U.S. News & World Report.

UD's online MBA emphasizes business analytics, decision-making, and creative thinking skills. The program comprises 44-53 credits, depending on how many concentrations a student pursues. Students can choose up to three of the following concentrations: business analytics, finance, healthcare management, strategic leadership, or international business.

Regardless of concentration, all students complete core courses in financial management, corporate strategy, and managing people, teams, and organizations. Core requirements culminate in two professional development seminars.

Courses span seven weeks, and students can graduate in as little as 16 months. Learners can begin on one of six start dates per year.

School Type
Public Nonprofit
Graduation Rate
81%
Percent Receiving Loans
53%
Online Enrollment
6%
45

Colorado State University—Fort Collins 

Fort Collins, CO

About this school

Founded in 1870 as the state's first land-grant institution, Colorado State University hosts five physical locations and an online division. CSU annually enrolls roughly 30,000 students at its Fort Collins campus and approximately 10,000 students online. The university offers one of the best online MBA programs in the country, according to U.S. News & World Report.

CSU's online MBA comprises 42 credits and includes an optional specialization in marketing data analytics. Students complete core and elective courses, culminating in a capstone course. Core topics include business systems and processes, supply chain management, and international business. Students can choose from electives in four categories: professional enrichment, marketing, finance, and computer information systems.

Full-time students can graduate in less than two years. Applicants need a bachelor's degree from an accredited institution with a minimum 3.0 GPA and at least four years of professional experience. All online students pay the same tuition rate regardless of residency.

School Type
Public Nonprofit
Graduation Rate
71%
Percent Receiving Loans
46%
Online Enrollment
29%
46

Santa Clara University 

Santa Clara, CA

About this school

Founded in 1851, Santa Clara University is rooted in the Jesuit Catholic tradition. SCU enrolls more than 5,500 students annually through over 50 graduate, undergraduate, and certificate programs. SCU offers one of the best online MBA programs in the nation, according to the Princeton Review.

Offered through the Leavey School of Business, the 70-credit online MBA at SCU emphasizes responsibility and innovation. Students can choose from concentrations in leading innovative organizations; marketing; finance; data science and business analytics; entrepreneurship and new venture creation; and food entrepreneurship.

Regardless of concentration, all students take core courses in strategy, business analytics, and ethics for managers. In addition to core, concentration, and elective courses, students must complete two weekend-long, on-campus residencies. Courses use a flexible, asynchronous format.

SCU offers four start dates per year. Online MBA applicants need at least three years of work experience and must submit GRE or GMAT scores. All online students pay the same tuition rate regardless of residency.

School Type
Private Nonprofit
Graduation Rate
91%
Percent Receiving Loans
34%
Online Enrollment
3%
47

University of Arkansas 

Fayetteville, AR

About this school

Established in 1871, the University of Arkansas is among only 3% of U.S. colleges to receive R1 Carnegie classification. U of A enrolls more than 27,500 students annualaly through over 200 graduate, undergraduate, and certificate programs.

The school offers an online, executive MBA program through its Sam M. Walton College of Business and its Graduate School of Business. The program comprises 38 credits and offers concentrations in supply chain management, finance, business analytics, innovation and entrepreneurship, and retail.

While students complete most coursework online, they must also attend one on-campus session per month. Core courses explore topics like corporate financial management, leadership and managing behavior, and accounting/statistics boot camp.

Students must begin during the fall semester. Applicants must hold at least a bachelor's degree from an accredited institution and submit GRE or GMAT scores. While not required, work experience is highly recommended and may qualify some applicants to waive the GRE/GMAT requirement.

School Type
Public Nonprofit
Graduation Rate
66%
Percent Receiving Loans
42%
Online Enrollment
33%
48

Baylor University 

Waco, TX

About this school

Chartered in 1845 by Baptist pioneers, Baylor University ranks among the nation's top private Christian colleges and research institutions. Baylor enrolls more than 18,000 students from all 50 states and 89 countries. Students can choose from over 200 graduate, undergraduate, and certificate programs across 12 academic divisions. Baylor offers one of the best online MBA programs in the country, according to U.S. News & World Report.

The online MBA features four primary learning outcomes: effective communication, professional collaboration, leadership skills, and core values. Students must complete 48-60 credits of foundation, core, communication, and marketing courses. Some students need to complete business foundation prerequisites prior to pursuing core MBA coursework. Courses span seven weeks, and full-time students can graduate in one year.

Learners can begin on one of six start dates per year. Applicants must hold a bachelor's degree. Students pay different tuition rates depending on whether or not they possess a bachelor's degree in business with accreditation from the Association to Advance Collegiate Schools of Business. Baylor also offers a pay-by-course option for qualified students. Applicants with fewer than four years of work experience must submit GRE or GMAT scores.

School Type
Private Nonprofit
Graduation Rate
70%
Percent Receiving Loans
47%
Online Enrollment
14%
49

University of South Florida 

Tampa, FL

About this school

Founded in 1956, the University of South Florida enrolls more than 50,000 students annually from nearly all 50 states and more than 140 countries. Students can choose from over 200 graduate, undergraduate, and certificate programs across 12 academic divisions. USF's online MBA program ranks among the top 50 in the country, according to U.S. News & World Report.

The online MBA requires 33 credits of core and concentration coursework. Courses explore topics like communication skills for managers; data analytics for business; and social, ethical, and legal systems. Students without prior business experience may need to take prerequisite courses in areas like accounting, management, and economics. The program offers concentrations in cybersecurity; data analytics; compliance, risk, and anti-money-laundering; and healthcare analytics.

Students may also design their own concentrations. The online MBA requires one campus residency. Students culminate the degree with an MBA capstone requirement. MBA students can optionally earn a concurrent graduate certificate in cybersecurity or data analytics. Full-time students can graduate in four semesters.

School Type
Public Nonprofit
Graduation Rate
73%
Percent Receiving Loans
36%
Online Enrollment
21%
50

Kent State University at Kent 

Kent, OH

About this school

Established in 1910, Kent State University at Kent ranks among the top public research colleges in the nation. Students can choose from hundreds of graduate, undergraduate, and certificate programs across 10 colleges, including 13 fully online programs. KSU ranks highly among Ohio's best online MBA programs, according to U.S. News & World Report.

The online MBA requires 36-37 credits, depending on whether a student holds at least two years of work experience upon enrollment. Students must complete five proficiency webinars in areas like accounting, finance, and statistics prior to taking core MBA coursework. The program offers concentrations in business analytics and international business.

Students complete courses through accelerated, eight-week modules, graduating in as little as one year. KSU offers start dates in the fall, spring, and summer. Applicants need a bachelor's degree. While KSU generally requires GMAT or GRE scores for online MBA applicants, students with a doctoral degree or a minimum 3.5 GPA and at least 10 years of work experience may qualify to waive this requirement.

School Type
Public Nonprofit
Graduation Rate
60%
Percent Receiving Loans
66%
Online Enrollment
38%
👏

End of list, bravo!

Ranking Methodology

Online MBA Programs Ranking Guidelines

We selected the following degree programs based on quality, curricula, faculty strength, school awards, rankings, and reputation, including the school's reputation for providing quality online programs. Our online MBA rankings employ the same methodology that we used to produce our ranking of the best online colleges.

Frequently Asked Questions

What Does MBA Stand For?

MBA stands for master of business administration.

What Is an MBA?

An MBA is an advanced degree that prepares students for high-level business roles in fields like finance, human relations, and marketing.

What Can You Do With an MBA?

Online MBA programs prepare graduates for managerial and leadership roles in diverse industries.

Is an MBA a Master's?

Yes, an online MBA program is a master's degree. Applicants must have a bachelor's degree to apply for enrollment.

What Jobs Can I Get With an MBA?

Graduates can work in a variety of fields, depending on their interests and goals. Common jobs for graduates include top executive, marketing manager, and administrative service manager.

What Is an MBA?

An MBA is an advanced degree that prepares students for leadership roles in diverse industries. Courses cover topics like leading and managing, using analytical tools for decision-making, analyzing and developing marketing tools, and understanding operations management. Students gain analytical, management, marketing, and communication skills, which they can apply to a variety of roles.

It is common for online MBA program applicants to be recent bachelor's graduates, current business professionals looking to advance their careers, or professionals in other industries seeking a career change.

How Are MBA Programs Accredited?

Prospective online MBA students should look for two types of accreditation when researching potential schools: regional and programmatic. The U.S. Department of Education oversees six regional accrediting bodies, which accredit schools based on where they are located. Regional accreditation indicates that a school meets high standards with respect to faculty qualifications, academic rigor, and student learning outcomes. There is also national accreditation, but it typically applies only to vocational or trade schools, not to business schools.

Programmatic accreditation applies to programs within a school. MBA programs may hold accreditation from the Association to Advance Collegiate Schools of Business, the Accreditation Council for Business Schools and Programs, or the International Assembly for Collegiate Business Education.

How Long Does It Take to Complete an Online MBA?

Online MBA programs typically take two years of full-time study to complete, but many programs also offer accelerated timelines that allow students to graduate in 12-18 months. Additionally, some schools offer 4+1 programs for students who want to pursue an MBA immediately after earning a bachelor's degree, allowing learners to graduate with an MBA in just one year.

What Else Can I Expect From an Online MBA Program?

When researching prospective online MBA programs, students should ensure potential programs offer concentrations and courses aligned with their career goals. Offerings vary by program, but the following sections outline common courses and concentrations found in online MBA programs.

Online MBA Courses

Online MBA programs focus on leadership and management skills in addition to traditional business best practices. A few common courses are outlined below.

Legal and Ethical Decision-Making

Typically taken in the first year, this course introduces students to some of the ethical and legal considerations that business leaders commonly encounter. Because many MBA graduates pursue managerial positions, they must understand how to ethically and legally interact with customers, clients, suppliers, and employers.

Students in this class learn how to make effective individual and company-wide decisions, understand common areas of unethical behavior (e.g., insider trading), and stay up-to-date on legal regulations. Learners may review case studies, participate in roleplaying assignments, and complete group projects.

Leadership Theory and Practice

Because so many MBA graduates work in leadership positions, this is often a core class in MBA curricula. Learners study how effective leaders provide oversight and support for employees and help their companies achieve goals. The course may use case studies of business and non-business leaders across history to help students identify effective and ineffective leadership strategies. Students often complete reflective papers and assignments that help them identify their leadership styles.

Information Technology

Businesses often rely on information technology to create internal and external computer networks, collect data and make data-driven decisions, and keep sensitive information secure. This course examines how information technology can inform and improve business functions. Students learn how to use databases, manage digital strategies, and extrapolate data for use in business decision-making.

Personnel Management

Sometimes known as human resource management, this course teaches students how to manage talent across their companies. Students learn how to hire effective employees, manage benefits programs, set competitive salaries, and provide meaningful training opportunities. Coursework also incorporates topics from industrial-organizational psychology to teach future managers how to maintain effective, efficient, and fulfilled employees.

Finance and Accounting for Managers

Business professionals typically need a basic understanding of finance and accounting to assess business performance, identify areas of improvement, and set strategic goals, even if they don't work in finance. This course examines financial accounting principles, international financial reporting standards, and industry standards and trends. Many online MBA programs also offer finance and accounting concentrations.

Marketing Management

This course teaches students how to incorporate marketing, branding, and advertising strategies to help organizations meet goals. Topics include segmentation and targeting, pricing and promotion, distribution, and brand allegiance. Students review marketing management case studies from a variety of companies and industries to identify best practices and areas of improvement.

Online MBA Concentrations

Because business is such a broad topic, most online MBA programs offer concentrations to help degree-seekers focus their skills. Below are a few common concentrations.

Marketing

Marketing concentrations are ideal for students who want to lead marketing departments and make high-level decisions about how companies are portrayed internally and externally. Courses cover topics like marketing analysis and development, global brand strategies, and how to use data analytics to inform marketing decisions. Graduates can pursue senior-level titles such as brand and product marketing manager, public relations director, marketing data analyst, and marketing director.

Finance

Finance concentrations provide an in-depth understanding of the financial tools and concepts that can improve companies. Students learn how to make effective financial decisions and keep organizations financially healthy. Classes cover topics like international financial markets, advanced corporate finance, venture capitalism and financial innovations, and behavioral finance.

Entrepreneurship

An entrepreneurship concentration teaches students how to create their own business ventures. Learners study concepts like finance, marketing, human assets, and management. Classes also cover venture capital and entrepreneurial management, strategies and practices of family-controlled companies, finance of buyouts and acquisitions, and intellectual property strategy for innovation-driven enterprises.

International Business

Designed for students who want to work in multinational corporations, international business concentrations teach students about global markets, international trends, and the rules governing how business is done around the world. Rather than focusing on a single topic, this concentration reviews traditional business topics — like human resource management and finance — through an international lens. Common courses include international business environments, international business law, and global operations for supply chain strategies.

Human Resource Management

Human resource management concentrations prepare students for roles managing human capital, such as training manager, compensation and benefits manager, and human resource manager. Courses may cover topics like foundations of human resource staffing, human resource management for general managers, talent management and development, and leading the strategic change process. Programs may also examine negotiation and conflict resolution strategies.

What Are Some MBA Salaries?

Online MBA programs prepare graduates to compete for a variety of jobs in diverse industries. The following list outlines common jobs and potential salaries for graduates.

Management Analysts

Also known as management consultants, management analysts help organizations improve efficiency. They may work in house for a single corporation or in a consulting role for several clients. When starting a new project, management analysts observe the workplace to identify efficiency problems. They may interview staff, review financial data, and collect other relevant information.

After identifying a problem, management analysts develop solutions based on organizational needs. They may introduce new systems, institute changes, or work with management teams to ensure effective implementation of plans.

Median Annual Salary

$83,610

Projected Growth Rate

14%

Top Executives

Top executives sit at the helm of their companies, directing activities and setting short- and long-term goals. They devise strategic plans, liaise with other department leaders, and set organizational policies. They may also set budgets, negotiate large contracts, and review financial statements.

These individuals need strong leadership, problem-solving, communication, and decision-making skills.

Median Annual Salary

$104,980

Projected Growth Rate

6%

Administrative Service Managers

Administrative service managers oversee clerical staff, create and monitor departmental goals, develop and implement operational policies, and oversee company-wide recordkeeping. These professionals may also oversee an organization's facilities.

When necessary, administrative service managers may call on outside vendors or specialists to repair equipment or introduce new technology. They must also ensure companies abide by local, state, federal, and industry regulations.

Median Annual Salary

$96,180

Projected Growth Rate

7%

Marketing Managers

Marketing managers work in every industry to raise public awareness of an organization's goods or services and increase revenue. They develop advertising campaigns, create branding guidelines, and develop marketing strategies aligned with company goals.

Marketing managers typically work with other departments to assess needs and create deliverables. They may manage their departmental budget, source and hire outside vendors and contractors, review campaigns, and negotiate contracts.

Median Annual Salary

$134,290

Projected Growth Rate

8%

Financial Managers

Financial managers help companies understand their finances and increase their revenue. They may prepare financial statements, create income and loss forecasts, develop business activity reports, and present financial information to stakeholders. Financial managers need a keen eye for detail and strong analytical thinking and problem-solving abilities.

Median Annual Salary

$127,990

Projected Growth Rate

16%

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