Deciding to earn your MBA is a big step for your education and your career. You’ll spend at least one year diving into textbooks, case studies, and real business experience to get this advanced degree.
But for nontraditional students, there is an option – and it’s even easier than attending a traditional MBA program on a university campus. Plenty of well-respected universities are now offering online MBA programs, meaning students can learn and study from absolutely anywhere.
These are the top online MBA programs available today.
1. Indiana University – Kelley School of Business
Indiana University is known worldwide for its stellar business program for both undergraduate and graduate students, but you don’t have to attend classes on campus in order to get the very same education. The university’s business school, the Kelley School of Business, offers an entirely online MBA program.
The MBA program offered by Indiana University is perfect for long-distance or nontraditional students – U.S. News reports that 100 percent of enrolled MBA students are already working when they first enroll in the program. So, the coursework is already designed to suit working adults’ busy schedules, meaning you’ll be able to take courses whenever you’re able to. The program offers fantastic flexibility, giving students anywhere from two to five years to work on their courses, take classes, and connect with the Kelley School faculty for mentoring and other opportunities.
2. University of North Carolina, Chapel Hill – Kenan-Flagler Business School
A renowned university known for its research and its course variety, University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill (UNC) is also home to one of the best online MBA programs available. The storied Kenan-Flagler Business School at UNC is designed for students who need flexibility but don’t want to sacrifice the rigor and challenge of a traditional MBA program.
UNC’s online MBA program gives students the perfect virtual environment for learning. Students can attend live classes – either weekly at a scheduled time or whenever you can fit a class into your schedule – and take anywhere from 18 to 36 months to complete the entire program at your own pace. Each student can tailor their coursework and degree path to their unique career goals and, if you’d like, you can even travel to the Chapel Hill campus and attend a few classes in person if you’re interested.
3. University of Southern California – Marshall School of Business
The University of Southern California (USC) is home to one of the top practical MBA programs in the US. And students who need an online MBA program but don’t want to miss the chance to study under a highly reputed faculty can experience the same quality education thanks to the USC Marshall School of Business’s online MBA program.
The USC Online MBA is specifically designed by USC professors for online students and an online learning platform, which means you’re guaranteed to enjoy the exact same education as a traditional in-class MBA student. You’ll learn how to think like an entrepreneur, improve your communication skills, study analytics and metrics, learn how to manage employees both in-office and remote, and explore the benefits of social media, all from the comfort of your home. At the end of the program, you’ll even get hands-on experience by working with a virtual platform designed for business leadership skills.
4. Arizona State University – Carey School of Business
Arizona State University has a great reputation for its traditional MBA program, but the university’s online MBA program may be even better. Created for working adults with full-time jobs, career experience, and a busy life, the Arizona State University Carey School of Business online MBA program only enrolls working students – according to U.S. News, 100 percent of online MBA students are already employed.
Because of this, the ASU online MBA program – officially known as the W. P. Carey Online MBA – features a curriculum made up of classes that have been recorded during live lectures given at ASU. The Carey Online MBA program includes a core curriculum and electives students can choose based on the specialty they’re interested in. Students can also participate in teamwork activities, which helps create a community among online students despite the distance, and receive mentoring for their unique career goals.
5. University of Florida – Warrington College of Business
If you’re working and already deep into your career, it’s difficult to fit even an online MBA program into your schedule – but some MBA programs actively look for individuals who are looking to advance their current careers. That’s exactly what the University of Florida’s online MBA program is one of the best online options: it enrolls students who have years of career experience.
One of the first fully-accredited online MBAs ever offered, the University of Florida is one of the world’s best online programs today. Only students with professional work experience are accepted, making it a competitive program. Online MBA students follow the same format as the MBA courses taught on campus, but at any time and from anywhere in the world. Students spend at least two years working through online classes – each class is just five weeks long – and complete lectures, individual assignments, group projects, and unique research throughout the program.
6. University of Texas, Dallas – Naveen Jindal School of Management
The University of Texas, Dallas (UT Dallas) offers an online MBA program that’s perfect for anyone trying to fit graduate education into their busy lives. Designed to be a flexible program suitable for those who can’t fit a regular schedule or packed curriculum into their every day, the UT Dallas online MBA has no on-campus requirement and lets students decide how they want to earn their MBA.
Once enrolled, online MBA students studying with UT Dallas get to choose how many classes they want to take each semester, which concentration they’ll focus on, and what order they’d like to take courses in. You can start at any time, and you can complete absolutely every aspect of this program online, from classes to testing to readings. However, don’t expect this online MBA to be easy – UT Dallas keeps its online courses just as rigorous as any others, ensuring you’ll be challenged to learn more and gain new skills along the way.
7. University of Maryland – Smith School of Business
An online MBA program can put distance between you and the faculty as well as you and your fellow classmates, but that isn’t the case at the University of Maryland. The online MBA program offered by the University of Maryland’s Smith School of Business is a top program because it requires students to engage with both faculty and peers, creating a unique and collaborative community over the internet.
The Smith School online MBA program is taught by the very same faculty members who teach the University of Maryland full-time MBA program, so you’ll study the same cutting-edge information and get the chance to apply your knowledge in the real world. Each week, students and faculty come together for a live online session to share ideas and chat about course concepts. You’ll get the chance to work with businesses in your local area too, and you’ll round out your experience with business simulations and some cross-classmate competition in areas like group projects.
8. Babson College – FW Olin Graduate School of Business
Babson College is a school so dedicated to business that it only offers business majors and courses for its students. And if you’re looking to earn your MBA online, one of the very best programs is the Babson Blended Learning MBA program. A one-of-a-kind program that combines online study with on-campus coursework, this program includes online classes, in-person sessions, and virtual group work.
There’s truly no other program like the Babson Blended Learning MBA program. Over the course of 21 months, students become part of a small team made up of fellow students who take courses together online, participate in live face-to-face sessions online once every so often, and join online case studies, live discussions, and team exercises each week. Because the program is blended, students will also visit Babson a few times throughout the program so they can meet their faculty and receive more one-on-one help while earning their MBA.
9. North Carolina State University – Poole College of Management
Designed for students who are busy with their careers and daily lives, the North Carolina State University offers an online MBA program through the Poole College of Management that’s easy to join, flexible in its scheduling and coursework, and competitive in terms of graduates’ success. Fully accredited and backed by a curriculum that’s incredibly technology-focused, the North Carolina State online MBA is an excellent program.
Officially named the Jenkins Professional Online MBA, this online MBA program lets you choose how you want to turn your years of business experience into a new career or new opportunities. Students can spend anywhere from 21 months to six years studying online, taking courses as they suit your busy schedule and studying from wherever you call home. There’s no need to visit campus as you can complete every step of this MBA program online, from watching lectures on your own time to tackling challenging assignments.
10. University of Utah – Eccles School of Business
The University of Utah’s MBA Online program, which is offered through the Eccles School of Business at this storied university, is an ideal fit for those looking for a high-quality MBA program that can be accessed any time. The University of Utah calls its MBA Online program “on-demand,” meaning students can take control of their learning and their MBA education – and all that’s needed is an internet connection.
The MBA Online program makes your course information and content available 24/7 so you can learn at any time, but you’ll also get the chance to participate in weekly live web conferences so you can meet other students and faculty for discussions, class help, or more. By taking just two classes at a time, you can finish this online MBA in as little as 24 months. Each course lasts either five or 10 weeks, making it easy to focus on the material without feeling overwhelmed. You’ll study everything from the basics, like accounting, managing and leading, and business communications, to the more detailed aspects of business, like strategy, ethics, and electives of your choosing over the course of your studies.
Did you find this article helpful?