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Online Applied Management Undergraduate Degrees with Career Info

Find out about online applied management courses and in which degree programs they're most commonly offered. Get course descriptions, program info and online requirements to make an informed decision.

Essential Information

Online associate's degree programs in applied management are available, though they may be more commonly offered as on-campus programs. When offered as online options, management programs can be completed entirely online and may offer a variety of tracks in various business fields, such as human resources management, general management or hospitality management.

Online bachelor's degree programs in applied management are also available. Typically, these programs require applicants to have previously completed some prior education, like an associate's degree program, and may also include on-campus or in-person requirements, like internships or co-op work experiences.

Associate's Degree in Applied Management

An online associate's degree program in applied management is a convenient way to prepare for a career in business management. Students learn different aspects about running a small business, from managing human resources to the legal and ethical issues involved in business management. Distance learning students also learn important skills in computer applications, finance, accounting and marketing.

In relation to many other fields of study, online associate's degree programs in applied management and general management are quite common at both public and for-profit institutions. The minimum requirement for this program is typically a high school diploma. Because the degree program is offered online, students may also be required to have basic computer skills or software proficiency.

Program Information and Requirements

Most online associate's degree programs in applied management can be completed in two years. Many programs are offered fully online, while others may require students to complete some tasks on campus. Course resources, such as reading materials, are typically made available through a class website and students may participate in class discussions and complete exams online. Students may communicate with their instructors and fellow classmates through online discussion boards and e-mail correspondence. Similar programs allow students to earn an associate's degree in applied management based on work experience.

The most common technical requirements for an online applied management associate's degree include access to a computer and Internet connection. In order to view course materials and complete assignments, students may need access to software programs, such as Microsoft Word, Excel, Adobe Reader or a media player.

Course Topics

The majority of credits required for an online associate's degree program in applied management include topics in business, management and computer applications; however, some general education credits are also required to earn an associate's degree. Students access courses through a variety of online formats, which vary by school, but may include an online forum, community discussion boards and an assignment drop-box.

Business Ethics

An online business ethics course helps aspiring managers learn to deal with ethical conflicts in the workplace and business world. Skills acquired include ethical decision-making, critical thinking, argumentation and ethical positions justification. Topics of study may include employer and employee rights, capitalism, technology, fraud, privacy, affirmative action and environmental issues.

Small Business Management

Courses in small business management or entrepreneurship are common requirements of an online associate's degree program in applied management. Such courses cover the practical and legal elements of starting and operating a small business, such as creating a business plan, financing, marketing, organizational planning and the legal aspects of business management. Such courses often rely heavily on case studies.

Introduction to Sales and Marketing

Sales and marketing are an important component of running a business. Such courses introduce students to concepts in the marketing of products, ideas and services, as well as personal selling. Distance learning students may be required to create a sales proposal.

Computer Applications for Business

An online associate's degree program in applied management often includes an introductory course in computers and computer software for business. Student learns about computer operating systems, business hardware and computer software. Common software programs include those used for creating and managing databases, word processing and spreadsheets.

Fundamentals of Accounting

Students are introduced to the principles of accounting and their relevance for business. Procedures learned include preparing financial statements, payroll accounting, bank reconciliation, posting and keeping a petty cash fund. Students also learn journalizing, which involves keeping chronological records of accounting transactions.


Bachelor's Degree in Applied Management

The curriculum for an online bachelor's degree program in applied management focuses on analytical thinking and problem-solving skills. This program trains students in human resources and business ethics, as well as several components of small business management, such as accounting, finance and marketing. In comparison to other areas of study, online undergraduate programs in applied management are fairly common. Some bachelor's degree programs in applied management require students to have already earned an associate's degree, while others require only a high school diploma. Because it is an online program, applicants may be required to demonstrate proficiency in basic computer and Internet skills, as well as Microsoft software programs like PowerPoint, Word and Excel.

Program Requirements and Information

An online bachelor's degree program in applied management typically takes four years to complete. Many programs of this kind are offered entirely online, although some may include on-campus requirements or components that must be completed in person, such as internships or co-ops with local businesses. Group projects may also be completed online and in-person, which might require students to develop a small business plan or proposal.

The online component varies depending on the program, but most require some combination of reading and online discussions. Research papers and other assignments may be turned in online using an electronic drop-box. Students receive grades and feedback from instructors using an online forum or via e-mail. Some classes allow students to work almost entirely at their own pace, while other online courses have scheduled times for group discussions or exams. Some online applied management programs also allow students to earn credits based on prior work experience.

Technical requirements also vary, but at minimum students are generally required to have access to a fairly modern computer and Internet connection. Certain types of computer software may also be required, such as Microsoft Word, PowerPoint and Excel.

Course Topics

The major requirements for an online applied management bachelor's degree program generally make up about half of the total credit hours and include courses in business management, organizational behavior, human resources, finance, marketing and accounting. Although some topics may overlap with an associate's degree in applied management, a bachelor's degree typically requires more advanced courses, as well as additional general education courses.

Human Resources Management

Students in this online course learn to create an effective work environment, which includes leadership, communication and motivation. Human resources planning, recruitment and training are also covered. Legal aspects of modern human resources management are studied, as are the various organizational levels that affect human resources development.

Diversity in Management

This course is related to human resources management and focuses on diversity in the workplace. Topics covered may include affirmative action and gender differences. Students learn to create a work environment that promotes and supports diversity through an understanding of socialization, stereotyping, stress and gender roles.

Organizational Behavior

Understanding organizational behavior is an important outcome of an online bachelor's degree program in applied management. Students in this class learn methods of organization, group behavior, motivation, decision-making, perception and conflict. This course also focuses on how diversity, globalization and technology can affect organizational behavior and structure.

International Business

Distance learning students learn about various aspects of international business, which include political, cultural, legal and economic factors. This course focuses on how to do business in an increasingly global world, including international business strategies and management.


Career Information

Many different industries employ managers, which means that it is difficult to estimate salary information and job outlooks; however, this also means that career options are generally plentiful. For example, graduates with an education in applied management may become general managers, sales managers, office managers and supervisors, working in a wide variety of businesses and industries. Depending on the program, students may also be able to transfer credits to a bachelor's degree program in applied management. When looking solely at supervisors of office and administrative staff workers, a field for which an associate's degree is increasingly preferred, the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics reported a mean annual salary of $56,170 in 2015 (www.bls.gov).

Popular career options for graduates of an online bachelor's degree program in applied management include supervisor, office manager and project manager. Salaries and job prospects for applied management majors vary significantly depending on the field. Other factors also come into play, such as geographic region, urban vs. rural locations and experience level. Although the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics doesn't collect salary and employment information specifically for project managers, it reported that a 2006 survey from the Project Management Institute found that the median annual earnings for this field were $96,000, which includes salary and bonuses (www.bls.gov). However, this survey also reported that experience is an important factor in earnings and entry-level project managers may earn less.

Students can complete an undergraduate degree program in applied management in either a fully online or hybrid format. Depending on the program, students may be required to complete internships and co-op experiences. Program courses may include business ethics, international business and fundamentals of accounting.


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