The two most common types of degrees awarded in insurance or risk management are the Bachelor of Science (B.S.) and the Bachelor of Business Administration (B.B.A.), but advanced degrees and graduate certificate programs are also available.
10 Schools with Insurance Programs
These ten schools offer some of the best insurance and risk management degrees in traditional and online formats in 2016, along with 2015-2016 tuition rates.
|College/University||Location||Institution Type||Degrees Offered||Tuition (2015-2016)*|
|Ohio State University||Columbus, OH||4-year, Public||Bachelor's|| $10,037 for in-state
$27,365 for out-of-state
|University of Minnesota-Twin Cities||Minneapolis, MN||4-year, Public||Bachelor's|| $13,790 for in-state undergraduate
$10,728 for in-state graduate
|University of Wisconsin-Madison||Madison, WI||4-year, Public||Bachelor's, Master's, Doctorate|| $10,415 for in-state
$29,665 for out-of-state
|Florida State University||Tallahassee, FL||4-year, Public||Bachelor's, Master's|| $6,507 for in-state undergraduate
$9,684 for in-state graduate
|Temple University||Philadelphia, PA||4-year, Public||Bachelor's, Master's, Doctorate|| $15,188 for in-state undergraduate
$15,354 for in-state graduate
|University of North Texas||Denton, TX||4-year, Public||Bachelor's|| $9,730 for in-state
$19,090 for out-of-state
|Franklin University||Columbus, OH||4-year, Private||Bachelor's||$11,641|
|University of Georgia||Athens, GA||4-year, Public||Undergraduate Certificate, Bachelor's, Master's, Doctorate||$11,622 for in-state undergraduate, $8,492 for in-state graduate|
|Excelsior College||Albany, NY||4-year, Private||Bachelor's||$12,240**|
|Boston University||Boston, NY||4-year, Private||Master's degree||$43,285**|
Sources: *National Center for Education Statistics **School website
School Selection Criteria
Bachelor's degrees are the most common form of education for those looking to work in the insurance industry, though other options may be available at certain schools. It is important to consider the following when looking for insurance schools:
- Internships offer students the chance to gain hands-on experience and earn school credit. They often develop into employment opportunities for students after graduation.
- If a student has a particular career goal in mind, such as a position as a risk analyst, broker or benefits consultant, he should look for programs that provide education in the specific skills necessary for those jobs.
- Some schools offer insurance education programs online, which allow working professionals the opportunity to redirect their careers toward the insurance industry without having to quit their current occupation.
- There are programs in specific types of insurance offered, such as home, business, and life insurance.
Bachelor's Degree Programs
At the undergraduate level, it is possible to earn either a B.S. or a B.B.A. in Risk Management and Insurance. These programs combine general education requirements with core business education and insurance-specific studies in topics such as property and casualty insurance, health and life insurance, insurance company operations and risk management. Some programs offer internship opportunities, and some are available online.
Master's Degree Programs
At the master's degree level, students can earn a Master of Science (M.S.) in insurance and/or risk management, or they can choose one of these subjects as a concentration within a broader Master of Business Administration (M.B.A.) program. These programs can usually be completed in two years or less. It is important to note that some M.S. programs are only available for experienced professionals who have already achieved Chartered Property Casualty Underwriter (CPCU) certification.
Doctoral programs in insurance and risk management are rare, but they are available at some schools. Students begin by taking advanced courses in risk management, economics and financial theory and then focus on doctoral research conducted alongside a faculty member with whom they share an academic interest. These programs, which culminate in a dissertation and defense, usually take four years to complete.
Graduate Certificate Programs
Graduate certificate programs typically consist of a short series of courses in advanced business topics relating to insurance and risk management. Some programs are designed specifically for professionals who have experience in the field and want to advance their careers. The credits earned at some schools may be applied toward the Certified Risk Manager (CRM) or the Certified Insurance Counselor (CIC) designation requirements.
Many schools in the United States offer undergraduate- and graduate-level programs in insurance and risk management in traditional and online formats. Internships and other hands-on learning are often included to help build real-world skills to help graduates thrive in the workplace.