Online Marketing Schools and Colleges: How to Choose

Learn about important considerations when selecting an online marketing school. Keep reading to get an overview of the program options, career opportunities, and common topics offered for the field of study.

Online marketing programs are not hard to find, so students should consider a few factors when narrowing down their choices. Take note of the degree level, concentration options, and program formats before coming to a decision.

How to Select an Online Marketing School

Numerous colleges and universities offer online degrees in marketing, and they're available at the bachelor's and master's degree levels. Students should consider program level, area of concentration and career goals when selecting a school, along with potential in-person training requirements.

Award Level

When selecting an online marketing program, students should consider which award level they want to earn. A bachelor's degree is sufficient for most marketing positions; however, students interested in pursuing a management or executive position may benefit from a master's degree. While associate's degrees in marketing are typically not available online, those interested in having basic knowledge in the field may want to earn an associate's degree in business with a focus in marketing.

Specialization Options

Additionally, students at the bachelor's and master's degree levels can specialize in a specific area of marketing. Concentrations within the field include Internet marketing, integrated business marketing and public relations.

In-Person Requirements

Students considering an online program should determine if programs are hybrid or fully online. Hybrid programs, particularly at the master's degree level, may demand the completion of an internship, specific courses or seminars in-person.

List of Common Online Marketing Programs

Business Administration Associate's Degree - Marketing Concentration

An online associate's degree program in business management with a concentration in marketing will train students for entry-level business positions or continuing education opportunities. In addition to learning basic marketing principles and sales techniques, this type of program also teaches students how to analyze e-commerce impacts and how to work with customers. Sample courses include:

  • Customer relationship marketing
  • Digital marketing
  • Business law
  • Principles of public relations
  • Financial literacy

Bachelor of Science in Marketing

A distance learning bachelor's degree program in marketing prepares students for careers in television, radio, government agencies, hospitality and e-commerce. The program includes in-depth instruction on developing and executing complex marketing strategies, building information-based analytical thinking skills and applying research methods. Additionally, students might take courses such as:

  • Business law and ethics
  • Consumer behavior
  • Organizational and management principles
  • Professional selling

Master of Science in Integrated Marketing Communications

A Master of Science in Integrated Marketing Communications program might include coursework like:

  • Marketing research and analysis
  • Creative strategy and execution
  • Interactive and direct creative strategy
  • Brand equity management
  • Mobile marketing

In a public relations-focused program, there may be classes like e-communication, writing for public relations, critical thinking in communication, and PR research. An online master's degree in marketing typically consists of about 35-40 credit hours, and students can graduate in 2-3 years. Students may be required to complete a marketing campaign as a final project.

Schools with Online Programs in Marketing

Southern New Hampshire University offers an associate degree in marketing. Topics focused on in the program are areas like consumer behavior, market research, and international marketing. Classwork is completed at your own speed over six 8-week terms per year.

Western Governors University is a fully online school that offers a B.S. in Marketing Management. The program curriculum includes product management, strategic marketing, promotion, distribution, sales, and other relevant topics. Courses are tailored to one's own schedule, though students should be expected to engage in 15 hours or more of coursework per week.

The University of Alabama offers an MS in Marketing with a specialization in Marketing Analytics. This program covers traditional marketing courses along with advanced analytics. The program is offered entirely online, and takes 33 credit hours to complete.

When selecting an online marketing program, bear in mind the award level, program curricula, and how much of the work is completed remotely. Various degrees are available, so think about your desired level of education and the concentrations available in each program.

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