How Does an Online MBA Program Work?

Whether for professional advancement or personal enrichment, some professionals choose to obtain a Master of Business Administration (MBA) degree. A large number of these individuals opt to enroll in an online MBA program. The following article provides an in-depth look at how an online MBA program works. Schools offering Business degrees can also be found in these popular choices.

How an Online MBA Program Works

While online MBA programs generally offer the same education as traditional MBA programs, online programs allow students to create a flexible schedule while continuing in a full-time profession. Core courses, electives and areas of concentration in online MBA programs often mirror those of on-campus MBA programs.

Important Facts About Online MBA Programs

PrerequisitesUndergraduate Degree
Key SkillsInterpersonal communication, Problem-solving, Adaptability, Global awareness
Possible CareersBusiness Consultant, Financial Analyst, Sales Manager, Finance Director
Work EnvironmentOffice Setting
Median Salary (2018)$85,660 (for financial analysts)*
Job Outlook (2016-2026)11% growth (for financial analysts)*

Source:*U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics

Types of Programs

Many online MBA programs are part-time programs and can take around 3-4 years to complete, depending on the course load. Accelerated 1- and 2-year online MBA programs allow students to complete all the required coursework in a shorter timeframe than that of traditional MBA programs. Accelerated programs conduct courses throughout fall, spring and summer semesters. Other online MBA programs might combine online and live classes, the latter of which can be completed either at the school offering the degree or a partner institution, such as a junior college.


In all types of online MBA programs, students must complete a required number of core courses. Core courses are typically in management, marketing and finance. A certain number of electives must also be completed. These might include courses offered in an area of concentration, such as general management, accounting or entrepreneurship.


Online MBA programs work like many other online degree programs. Students can log on at their convenience to listen to recorded lectures and retrieve assignment details. Instructors and fellow students can be contacted via e-mail or through online chat rooms or message boards. Assignments and projects are turned in via e-mail. While many programs allow students to take exams online, some might require that exams be taken either on-campus or at proctored sites.

To continue researching, browse degree options below for course curriculum, prerequisites and financial aid information. Or, learn more about the subject by reading the related articles below:

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