Distance Learning MBA Schools and Colleges: How to Choose

Learn about important considerations when selecting an online Master of Business Administration program.To get an overview of the program options, interaction methods, and common topics offered for the field of study, keep reading.

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There are several institutions that offer online Master of Business Administration (MBA) programs for interested students. Here we will look at some considerations for selecting a school, as well as explore some degree and school options.

How to Select an Online MBA Program

Administrative managers plan, develop and implement the necessary administrative and financial groundwork for business, health care and non-profit organizations. Online Master of Business Administration programs are available to students who hold an undergraduate degree in a business-related field. The program offers a variety of specializations, and students interested in an MBA should have a clear idea about the field they intend to study before they pick a school. A master's degree in business is highly recommended for students looking for jobs in the competitive market of high-level management.

Area of Specialization

Online schools and colleges offer MBA programs with a number of field specializations such as finance, business, law, accounting and economics.

Program Delivery

Online degree programs provide students with two popular enrollment options, including fully online immersion and low-residency (hybrid). Online immersion programs offer course instruction through virtual labs, video lectures and tutorials, and they generally don't require students to take classes on campus. Students have access to online course material at all times.

Hybrid programs require students to spend at least part of the time on campus, and generally offer more opportunities for hands-on training. Some programs also offer accelerated or self-paced study options that allow students to complete courses at their chosen pace.

Master's Degree Program in Business Administration

Online MBA Degree Program

This 2-year program is designed for individuals who have a bachelor's degree in business or a related field. Students watch video lectures, read online class material, post discussions on online bulletin boards and correspond with instructors and other students through e-mail and chat. In order to complete the program, students may need to complete an internship. To demonstrate competency in the field, students will also write a research paper on a chosen topic applicable to the field and pass a final examination. Students are introduced to topics in human resource management such as:

  • Human resource management
  • Accounting and finance
  • Strategic marketing
  • Human behavior in organizations
  • International business

Online Degree Bridge Program

The bridge program is part of the online MBA program that is usually offered to students who are transitioning into a business degree from another field. Students gain the necessary knowledge to satisfy core requirements in business. Typical coursework for a bridge program may add an additional semester to the overall duration of the program, but the coursework includes essential business basics, such as:

  • Management theory
  • Project management
  • Financial accounting
  • Business economics

Schools With Online MBA Programs

Temple University's Fox School of Business offers one of the top ranking online MBA programs in the nation. Students can finish their degree in as little as 20 months, and learn from internationally known faculty. However, this program does require online students to complete a week-long residency on-campus at the beginning of the program.

The University of Cincinnati offers an online MBA program that can be completed in 12 to 24 months. Their program offers several different concentration areas, as well as multiple start dates for flexibility. Students in this program must complete a capstone experience.

The University of Colorado Denver gives students the unique option of completing their MBA entirely online or taking some courses on-campus if they so choose. Their program requires the completion of 48 credits and offers several different specializations.

Students searching for online MBA programs can explore many different options from institutions across the country. Potential students should consider available specializations and program formats when selecting the best school for them.

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