Individuals searching for online business management programs need to consider the award level, program type and the required technical specs before making their decision. Most programs aim to provide students with the skills necessary to succeed in any type of management position.
How to Select an Online Business Management School
Most business managers have a bachelor's or master's degree in business administration, finance or management. Students interested in a career in business should carefully consider the program type, level of education and technical requirements of each program.
The required level of study varies depending on the industry and the student's individual goal. A bachelor's degree in business is appropriate for individuals who want to find entry-level management positions and work their way up the corporate ladder. Students interested in administrative service management positions might find a more open market with a bachelor's degree; however, as competition grows at higher-level management positions, students often need a master's degree in management in order to compete.
Online degree programs offer students a variety of enrollment options, such as fully online immersion, low-residency (hybrid) or self-paced programs. Online immersion programs provide course instruction though video, e-learning modules, simulations, virtual labs and tutorials and generally don't require students to take classes on-campus. Students in full immersion online programs have full access to course material and lectures at any time of day or night.
Hybrid programs require students to spend at least part of the time on-campus and generally offer more hands-on training opportunities. Students who have had no prior experience with desktop publishing programs may benefit from classroom instruction. Some programs may also offer accelerated or self-paced study options that allow students to complete courses at their chosen pace.
Online degree programs require students to have regular access to a personal computer to keep up with classwork and instructor feedback. Most online programs will provide online training to familiarize students with unique program features; however, some level of technical fluency is required to interact online. Using online class material, students can communicate through bulletin boards, e-mail, chat and Web conferencing.
List of Popular Business Management Programs
Online Bachelor's Degree in Business Management
Online business management programs can be completed online, without on-campus attendance. Students move through the material at their own pace by viewing online lectures, demonstrations and assignments. Final projects typically include a research paper and online exam. Students complete a core of liberal arts courses in mathematics, history, English and communication before transitioning into business-related subjects. Specific courses in psychology and sociology are geared to help students address specific issues in global business, business communication and organizational behavior and management. Courses for the major generally include:
- Negotiation and conflict management
- Business project management
- Applied management principles
- Accounting for business managers
Online Master's Degree in Business Management
Online master's degree programs in business management are designed for individuals who have a bachelor's degree in business or a related field. Many schools require students to gain hands-on experience during an internship or to attend on-campus training, lectures and workshops. To demonstrate competency in the field, students write a research paper on a chosen business topic and pass a final examination. The online master's program can be completed in two years, during which students take coursework in specialized topic areas, such as:
- Management information systems
- Production and operations management
- Corporate innovations and new ventures
- Corporate and international finance
- New media and electronic commerce
Schools with Online Programs in Business Management
Western Governors University, a fully online institution, offers a B.S. in Business Management. Aside from business and management curricula, courses in finance, marketing and communication and economics are some of the subjects included in the program's broad approach. Coursework hours are flexible, but students should expect to work at least 15 hours per week.
An online B.S. in Business Administration is available from Southern New Hampshire University. A few of the program topics include accounting, finance, management and organizational behavior, and business law. Students can take a general track or concentrate in one of five areas. Courses are self-paced over six 8-week terms per year. The outcome is to acquire the expertise needed to be a manager in any industry, not just business.
The business management program you choose should be determined by the position you're reaching for; a bachelor's is the most common degree available online, but a master's may be needed for higher positions. It's also important to check the program delivery method and make sure you meet the technical requirements for working remotely.