Many associate's degree programs in human resource management, or business management with a human resource concentration, can be taken completely online. Students explore courses in financial accounting, organizational behavior, employment law, supply chain management and employee recruiting. The program can prepare students for a human resources specialist position; however, graduates may need a bachelor's or a master's degree, along with related work experience, for many HR manager jobs. Before beginning, some schools require students to complete a general tutorial in online learning.
Associate's Degrees in Human Resource Management
Courses in the curriculum of an online associate's degree program often include general education classes in the humanities and sciences, ethics and employment law. Students will learn effective team-building and employee relation management skills. They may also benefit from programs in business management as these programs often incorporate classes in human resource management and ethics.
Information and Requirements
Schools often allow human resource management students to tailor their class schedule to meet the demands of a busy life, such as taking only one class at a time or allowing several years to complete the degree. Some schools require students to complete a general program in online learning before starting general education requirements or degree-specific courses. Such classes allow students to become familiar with the school's online interface and provide tools to conduct effective online research.
List of Common Classes
Coursework in human resource management programs typically has a strong focus in developing students' communication skills, which can be an essential component of this field. Besides learning communication theories and practices, students will also gain a fundamental understanding of business in areas such as finance, marketing and personnel development.
Students will learn communication skills to help mitigate problems and foster collaboration in a company. Focus will be given to both one-on-one and group interactions. The importance of mentoring in the business world will also be discussed.
Human Resource Theory
Students will look at hiring and job training practices in this course. Both private and public companies will be analyzed and discussed. Students will also explore how wages and incentives are determined.
Students will examine the nature of human communication, as well as how formal communication is structured in the workplace. Topics will include aggression in human behavior, as well as mediated communication. Pertinent to the business world, students will review the necessity of privacy and confidentiality in the workplace.
Human resource specialists can be found in companies large and small, public and private, though it should be noted that most have at least a bachelor's degree. The U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) predicts that employment opportunities for human resource specialists will grow by 5% between 2014 and 2024. The BLS reports that as of 2014, there were 482,000 people working as human resource specialists in the United States. As of 2015, the median annual wage for human resources managers was $58,350.
According to the BLS, a bachelor's degree with a focus in business, sciences or the humanities is necessary to obtain many entry-level positions in human resources. Some senior human resource roles require a graduate degree, such as a Master of Business Administration or a master's degree in human resources. Additionally, many human resource managers seek professional certifications to advance their career. As one example, the BLS cites the certifications awarded by the Society for Human Resource Management (www.shrm.org).
In online associate's degree programs for aspiring human resources managers, students take courses in fundamental topics in the field, such as business and communications, as well as more general liberal arts classes. Due to the scheduling flexibility provided by an online program, students can work at their own pace and balance their education with other time commitments.