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Top Schools for Business Support and Administration

Read about programs in business support and administration, through which students can acquire management, problem solving and planning skills. Learn about the degree options at four high-profile universities, and find a list of other schools that offer programs for business support and administrative specialists.

Programs in business administration and closely related fields are available at both the undergraduate and graduate levels from top-ranked universities.

School Overview

The four national universities highlighted below have received high rankings from U.S.News & World Report and The Princeton Review for the quality of their business schools and management programs. They include Harvard University and Columbia University, both of which are Ivy League institutions, as well as Northwestern University and the University of Michigan in Ann Arbor.

Harvard University in Boston, MA

School Highlights: The school is ranked #2 of best universities nationwide.

Harvard University ranked #2 on the U.S. News & World Report list of national universities in 2017. USN&WR also ranked the Harvard Business School (HBS) and its management program as the best in the nation for the same year.

The Harvard Business School curriculum includes required coursework in finance, leadership, marketing and strategy; studies in leadership, negotiation and operations are also mandatory. After completing the required classes, students can choose from 96 electives in ten different areas. The Harvard Business School also offers five joint-degree programs, through which students learn how to solve business problems while taking courses in public policy and administration, law or medicine, among other fields of study.

Northwestern University in Evanston, IL

School Highlights: Ranked #5 Best Business School.

U.S. News & World Report ranked Northwestern University #12 among national universities in 2017. Additionally, the university's J.L. Kellogg School of Management placed #4 for its management program and fifth on USN&WR's list of best business schools for 2017 and #5 Best Business School for the same year. Depending on the area and level of study, students pursuing business programs at Northwestern can choose from over 200 different classes.

All business students at Northwestern University must complete a core curriculum that includes coursework in marketing, organizational and operations management; accounting and business strategizing. They also become familiar with the statistical and mathematical methods used to make management decisions, while taking required courses in finance and microeconomic analysis. Specialized majors include accounting information and management, entrepreneurship and innovation, decision sciences and health enterprise management. Undergraduates can also major in international business, marketing, media management and real estate.

University of Michigan-Ann Arbor

School Highlights: Ranked #12 Best Business School.

The University of Michigan in Ann Arbor ranked 27th on the U.S. News & World Report list of national universities for 2017. In the same year, U.S. News and World Report ranked the university's Ross School of Business #12. Ross also ranked #5 on its list of 'Best Management Programs'. Just like Northwestern, business students must complete a sequential core curriculum that includes topics in accounting, economics, finance and management, among other essential subjects.

The Ross School of Business does not differentiate between different business majors. Instead, the school encourages students to choose electives based on their career goals. For example, business students can complete dual degrees in business and another major area, such as engineering, education, information and public health, among other numerous fields of study. In addition, students can pursue special programs in real estate or political processes or participate in study abroad programs.

Columbia University in New York, NY

School Highlight: Business students can complete dual-degree programs that combine business with studies in architecture, engineering, law and medicine, among other fields.

For 2017, U.S. News & World Report ranked Columbia #10 among business schools and tied for #10 among management schools. Students at the Columbia Business School can earn a Master of Business Administration (MBA), Executive MBA, Master of Science, Executive Education or a Doctor of Philosophy (PhD) degree. Areas of study include accounting, management, marketing, finance and economics, and decision, risk and operations.

Top Business Schools

These are some of the other top business schools in the country:

  • At Dartmouth College in Hanover, NH, some instruction takes place through team projects.
  • Massachusetts Institute of Technology in Cambridge, MA was ranked #5 among business schools, according to U.S. News & World Report for 2017.
  • At Stanford University in Stanford, CA, the Stanford MSx Program for Experienced Learners can be completed in one year.
  • The University of California - Berkeley is home to the Institute for Business Innovation.
  • At the University of Chicago in Chicago, IL, the flexible MBA program includes just one required course.
  • The University of Pennsylvania in Philadelphia, PA, was ranked #4 on U.S. News & World Report's list of 'Best Business Schools' for 2017.

Prestigious business schools around the country offer excellent graduate-level programs for students who want to study business support and administration.


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