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Online Master’s Degree in MBA

Online MBA programs are primarily designed to provide students with a formalized approach to the theoretical and practical aspects of management. This often covers topics in general economics, finance, accounting, operations management, human resources, and entrepreneurship. Due to the wealth of possible applications for the business fundamentals taught in this type of program, individuals from a range of academic and professional backgrounds can benefit from earning a business administration masters degree online. Career opportunities can range from the financial services industry to healthcare administration. In fact, many online masters programs in this area offer industry specializations to best fit with students’ long-term career goals.

The typical program length for an online MBA is one to three years. This, of course, can differ based on the number of credits required for graduation, how many classes a student elects to register for each term, and whether or not any breaks are taken from the program. Some schools may allow adult students to apply a portion of their past work experience towards their degree through a portfolio review. This can accelerate the time to completion. However, note that not all institutions offer this option, so it is best to verify the specific transfer policy before relying on these type of credits.

Classes for an Online MBA

Online MBA students will typically complete a combination of survey, seminar, and practical application courses. Common core topics include decision-making, business strategy, finance, management, and leadership. If a student chooses to complete an area of concentration, such as accounting, entrepreneurship, or healthcare, the second half of their study will likely focus on courses related to this field. Some examples of possible courses are listed below:

  • Financial Accounting
  • Statistics for Managers
  • Leadership
  • Marketing Management
  • Supply Chain Management

Students enrolled in an accredited online masters degree program should also be prepared to complete a capstone research project at the end of their degree track. This will demonstrate the student’s ability to synthesize the theoretical concepts they have learned throughout the program and apply them to real-world business situations. Students will complete this work primarily on their own. However, they will receive guidance and feedback from a designated faculty member while enrolled in the capstone course.

A Career as a Graduate with an Online MBA

Individuals who earn their online masters degree in business administration have a wide range of career opportunities. This may include positions as investment bankers, financial services managers, marketing managers, human resources managers, or healthcare administrators, to name a few. MBA graduates may also find opportunities with government agencies and nonprofit organizations, though the majority of jobs will be in the private sector. According the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, the demand for medical and health services managers is expected to increase by 22% in the coming years. This is faster than the average of 14% growth expected for all jobs from 2010 to 2020. The median annual wage for professionals working in this capacity was $84,270 in 2010. The reported median salary for financial managers that same year was $103,910. However, job growth for financial managers is only expected to grow by 9% over the projection period. Note that these statistics are only averages. Actual starting salaries and job opportunities will vary based on location, level of experience, education, and the specific employer.

While there are positions in many of the popular industries for business administration graduates that only require a bachelor’s degree, a masters degree may help to accelerate an individual’s career track or improve their chances of being promoted to higher-level positions. Additionally, an MBA can be a great way for professionals to transition to a new field or job function.

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