Best MBA Degree Programs Online

An online Master of Business Administration (MBA) degree can help you pursue a variety of business careers. Learn more about the types of online MBA programs as well as how to choose, apply, and pay for your degree. Schools offering Business degrees can also be found in these popular choices.

Schools with Online MBA Programs

To find the perfect online MBA program for your needs, remember to take into consideration the format of the online program, affordability, and your desired concentration. Below, we've put together a list of the best online MBA programs available to you.

1. Herzing University-Minneapolis

Location Undergraduate Tuition & Fees (in-state; 2018-2019)
St. Louis Park, MN $14,000

Herzing University-Minneapolis boasts an online MBA degree that features 6 concentrations, including accounting and finance, technology management, project, management, human resources, healthcare management, and data analytics. This is a flexible program that allows you to easily fit your online classes into your schedule while also managing life and work commitments. Herzing University-Minneapolis accepts up to 9 graduate transfer credits, which could help you save money and time when earning your online MBA.

2. University of Iowa

Location Undergraduate Tuition & Fees (in-state; 2018-2019)
Iowa City, IA $9,267

At the University of Iowa, you can earn an online MBA degree in only 2 years through a mix of live, interactive classes that allow you to get to know your professors and fellow students, along with independent study classes that can be done at your own pace. The courses that make up the University of Iowa's online MBA program are all taught by the same faculty as the on-campus program, and this is an Association to Advance Collegiate Schools of Business (AACSB)-accredited program as well.

3. Auburn University

Location Undergraduate Tuition & Fees (in-state; 2018-2019))
Auburn, AL $11,276

The online MBA program at Auburn University features all online classes but also offers optional real-world professional enhancement opportunities, such as the MBA Orientation and a global immersion trip. The online MBA classes at Auburn University are interactive with livestreaming that allow you connect to your professors and fellow students, and the final capstone course is all about working with your peers. You should be able to complete your online MBA in about 2.5 years with a total of 13 classes.

4. University of Wyoming

Location Undergraduate Tuition & Fees (in-state; 2018-2019)
Laramie, WY $5,400

The online MBA program at the University of Wyoming is accredited by AACSB and designed to be completed part-time in about 2 years. This is a cohort-based program that requires 30 total credits with 100% online classes. While you are never required to come to campus, you can still take advantage of on- and off-campus networking events, if you so wish, which can help you find the right career after completing your online MBA degree.

5. Longwood University

Location Undergraduate Tuition & Fees (in-state; 2018-2019))
Farmville, VA $13,340

The online MBA program at Longwood University features two concentrations: general business and real estate. This 31-credit program is completely flexible with both part-time and full-time options available and short, 7-week terms that allow you to finish your degree quickly. All the faculty in the MBA program at Longwood University have doctorate degrees and are trained to teach online.

Rank School Name Location Undergraduate Tuition & Fees (in-state; 2018-2019)
6 Kansas State University Manhattan, KS $10,383
7 James Madison University Harrisonburg, VA $12,016
8 University of Kansas Lawrence, KS $11,148
9 Oral Roberts University Tulsa, OK $27,728
10 Citadel Military College of South Carolina Charleston, SC $12,516
11 Westminster College Salt Lake City, UT$34,000
12 Eastern Oregon University La Grande, OR $8,679
13 Colorado State University-Fort Collins Fort Collins, CO$11,707
14 George Mason University Fairfax, VA $12,462
15 University of Maine Orono, ME $11,170
16 Missouri University of Science and Technology Rolla, MO $9,440
17 University of Massachusetts-Dartmouth North Dartmouth, MA $13,921
18 Molloy College Rockville Centre, NY $31,490
19 Maharishi University of Management Fairfield, IA $16,530
20 University of Southern Mississippi Hattiesburg, MS $8,624
21Waynesburg University Waynesburg, PA $24,820
22 University of Arizona Tucson, AZ $12467
23 Maryville University of Saint Louis Saint Louis, MO $28,470
24 University of the Incarnate Word San Antonio, TX $31,484
25 University of Nebraska at Kearney Kearney, NE $7,512
26 University of Nevada-Reno Reno, NV $7,599
27 University of Mississippi University, MS $8,660
28 Mississippi University for Women Columbus, MS $6,940
29 University of Wisconsin-La Crosse La Crosse, WI $9,107
30 University of Wisconsin-Eau Claire Eau Claire, WI $8,820

All statistics provided by the National Center for Education Statistics

Learn.org's school ranking methodology categorizes and assesses data from schools and other reliable sources, such as the U.S. Department of Education, and weighs the information based on quality, cost, value and other factors critical to students' academic decisions.

Overview of Online MBA Programs

Online Master of Business Administration (MBA) programs come in a range of different formats, including part-time, full-time, hybrid, accelerated, and professional programs.

Typically, online MBA program consist of fully online classes. The format of your online classes depends on your specific program. Some programs feature asynchronous classes that you complete at your own pace and on your own time, others feature synchronous classes that involve livestreaming, live interactions, and live collaborations, and still other programs feature a mix of both asynchronous and synchronous classes.

In addition, online MBA programs could require limited real-world elements, such as weekend campus visits, short residencies, orientation sessions, or immersion trips. Some online MBA programs also offer specific concentrations or specializations, including the subfields of international business, data analytics, finance, real estate, marketing, HR, and project management.

How Long to Earn an Online MBA?

The amount of time it takes to complete an online MBA program depends on the kind of program you chose to attend. Below, you can find the typical time frame for earning your online MBA in the different types of programs.

Standard Online MBA Programs

First, standard online MBA programs usually take about 2 years to complete. Depending on the program, you could attend part- or full-time, and the number of classes you must take to finish in 2 years also varies by program.

Accelerated Online MBA Programs

Accelerated online programs are designed to be completed in as little as 1 year with some programs taking about 16 months to complete. These are fast-paced programs that entail serious time and study commitments from you so that you can finish in the 1-year time frame. Many accelerated programs allow you to bypass core classes if you have the right previous undergraduate or professional experience.

Professional or Executive Online MBA Programs

Professional or executive online MBA programs are for those with significant work experience or who are currently working professionals. These are often flexible programs that allow you to study and work at the same time. You could take finish18 months to 2 years, or even longer, to finish a professional MBA online.

Common Online MBA Program Prerequisite Requirements

To apply to an online MBA program, you usually need to submit an application, transcripts, a resume, letters of recommendation, and a personal statement. The following are other typical prerequisite requirements for online MBA programs.

A College Degree

Before applying to an online MBA program, you must already hold at least a bachelor's degree. There are typically no requirements for the type of degree you have; however, a bachelor's degree in business is required for some programs. Accelerated or professional programs may also require that you have an advanced degree or a professional certification.

Coursework

It's possible that you will be required to have completed some prerequisite coursework. These might include classes on marketing, economics, statistics, management, and accounting.

GMAT or GRE Scores

Typically, online MBA programs prefer GMAT scores, but many programs will also accept GRE scores. It's best to check with the specific program you are apply to regarding minimum scores. Last, select programs may offer a GMAT/GRE waiver if you meet certain requirements, such as having significant work experience, holding an advanced degree, or meeting a minimum GPA requirement.

Professional Experience

Online MBA programs could also, but not always, require professional experience as well. If a program has this requirement, it could vary from 2-5 years of experience.

Common Coursework for Online MBA Programs

Although the specific coursework you will be required to complete in an online MBA program varies by individual school and program, there are common topics that make up an MBA program's curriculum. Below, you can explore a selection of the possible subjects you may study in your chosen online MBA program.

  • Financial Management - explores financial theories and current issues in finance as well as how to make financial, investing, and capital budgeting decisions based on analyzing financial statements.
  • Marketing Management - focuses on theories, concepts, and models of marketing as well as such topics of consumer behavior, market research, promotion, branding, pricing, and distribution.
  • Organizational Behavior - centers on the study of how individuals behave within a group business setting, how groups behave, and how to best manage and lead a business organization.
  • Managerial Accounting - helps you understand how accounting methods and information can be used to make business decisions.

How to Choose an Online MBA Program

The type of online MBA program that is right for you depends on several factors, including your work experience, desired time commitment, your preferred learning style, financial considerations, and your career goals. You might also consider the following factors as well.

Accreditation

It's important that you choose an online MBA program that is accredited by the Accreditation Council for Business Schools and Programs (ACBSP) or the Association to Advance Collegiate Schools of Business (AACSB). Either of these accreditations assure that your program has met independent standards regarding quality and excellence in terms of curriculum, outside opportunities, and teaching. The main difference between these two accreditations is that AACSB if for programs that are more research-based while ACBSP is for programs with a teaching focus.

Online Format Preference

Another factor you should consider is your online format preference. You should decide if you are able to complete any real-world requirements, such as campus visits, or if you prefer a completely online program that has no such requirements. Also, deciding if you want to attend part- or full-time will also affect which program you choose.

Concentrations

Last, the types of concentrations an online MBA does or doesn't offer can help you decide which program is right for you. If you already know what kind of career you want to pursue, then you will want to choose an online program that offers a concentration within that field. For example, if you want a career in the healthcare field, then choose a program that offers a healthcare management or a similar concentration. Other concentration options might include accounting, project management, human resources, international business, finance, and business data analytics. Certain areas of concentration, such as project management, could lead to a certification exam.

Cost of Online MBA Degrees

The total cost of an online MBA degree varies by individual school. But generally, you can expect the tuition of your online MBA to be anywhere from about $12,000 to $60,000. Tuition costs sometimes depend on whether you are an in-state or out-of-state student as well.

Also, there are other costs associated with online MBA degrees, including university fees, technology fees, textbooks, and other instructional materials. It's important to take into consideration all the charges beyond tuition when adding up the total cost of an online MBA degree program.

How to Get Financial Aid for Online MBA Programs

There are many different pathways available that can help you afford your online MBA degree. Your first step should always be filling out and submitting the Federal Application For Student Aid (FAFSA), which allows you to understand the types of aid for which you qualify.

Federal and State Aid

One route for helping to pay for your online MBA degree is applying for government aid, including subsidized and unsubsidized loans, Pell grants, work-study programs, and scholarships. After you fill out, submit, and hear back on your FAFSA, you can decide which type of aid being offered works best for you.

School Scholarships

Many universities also offer specific scholarships for their MBA students. These scholarships could be based on merit, GPA, community service, and other factors. Some schools will automatically put you into contention for these opportunities and other schools could require you to apply for specific scholarships.

Employer Reimbursement

Certain employers will help you pay for your online MBA degree through reimbursement or other means. It's important that you collaborate with your employer for this kind of financial aid.

Veteran Benefits

If you are a veteran or active duty service member, then you have several options for getting financial help through the GI Bill.

Career Options with an Online MBA Degree

MBA degrees open up a variety of career pathways. Depending on if you choose a concentration, you can specialize in a specific business field. Below, you can explore possible high-level careers options that MBA degree holders can pursue.

Human Resources Manager

Human resource managers perform a range of administrative duties, including managing employees and their performance, overseeing benefit programs, recruiting, and hiring employees, and handling any staff or disciplinary issues. Human resources managers earned a median salary of $113,300.

Financial Manager

A financial manager is primarily in charge of the financial aspects of a business. In this role, you could be required to prepare financial statements and reports, make financial decisions regarding budgets and cost, monitor legal factors related to finance, and supervise employees in financial roles. Financial mangers earned a median salary of $127,990.

Health Services Manager

Health services managers typically work in a health care facility where they manage the entire business or specific departments, develop strategy and goals, train staff, prepare budgets, and create work schedules. Medical and health services managers earned a median salary of $99,730.

Salary information provided by the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, 2018

Certification Options for Business Managers

For most career paths, certification is an optional requirement; however, earning a specific certification can give your career prospects a boost, and some employers may prefer certification.

  • Human resources mangers have several options for earning certification, including those from the HR Certification Institute, the Society for Human Resource Management, the International Foundation of Employee Benefit Plans, and the WorldatWork.
  • Financial managers can earn the Chartered Financial Analyst (CFA) certification from the CFA Institute and/or the Certified Treasury Professional credential from the Association for Financial Professionals.
  • Health services managers in the medical management field can attain certification from the Professional Association of Health Care Office Management, and health information managers can achieve certification from American Health Information Management Association.

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:

  • 1. Degree Options:
The schools in the listing below are not free and may include sponsored content but are popular choices among our users. Tuition and costs will vary across programs and locations. Be sure to always request tuition information before starting a program.

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