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Degree Overview: Master of Business Administration (M.B.A.) Degree in Human Resource Management

Majors Overview May 18, 2015

Get information about Master of Business Administration (M.B.A.) degree programs in Human Resource Management and their education requirements, coursework, career choices, job and wage outlook, and continuing education choices.

Master of Business Administration (M.B.A.) Programs in Human Resource Management

Courses in business concepts and strategies are taken by students in an MBA program with a focus in human resource management, with an emphasis on business coaching, compensation management, benefits analysis, and corporate headhunting. Group projects, internships, presentations, reports, and advanced level assignments are typically in an MBA program. Schools may offer these programs in online, weekend only and full-time formats. Students typically take two years or less to complete programs.

Education Requirements

Admission criteria typically require incoming students to hold a bachelor’s degree, in addition to a specific grade point average in their undergraduate studies. Submission of letters of recommendation and a resume that highlights past work experience in business may be requirements at some schools.


Human resource-specific topics and basic business concepts are typically in program coursework. Students learn business strategies and how to use them in daily business operations. Core coursework may include subject areas such as:

•Organizational development
•Finance management
•Global business
•Business analysis
•Compensation and benefits
•Employment law
•International human resources

Career Choices

The job tasks of human resource managers can have various components ranging from choosing between in-house hiring and using independent careers to deciding how to staff a corporation. Managers are also involved in the recruitment and training of employees and in ensuring that employees are high performers. They may choose from popular career options such as:

•Payroll director
•Human resource manager
•Affirmative action officer

Job and Wage Outlook

Over the 2012 – 2022 decade, a job growth rate of 13% has been predicted for human resource managers. Over the same period, compensation and benefits managers and training and development managers are expected to see 3% and 11% growth respectively (U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics). In May 2012, human resource managers brought in an average annual wage of $99,720. Compensation and benefits managers and training and development managers earned respective wages of $95,250 and $95,400 (BLS).

Continuing Education Choices

Professional certification options can enhance the career prospects of program graduates, including advancement opportunities in top executive or managerial positions. Various organizations, such as the American Society for Training and Development, the Institute of Certified Professional Managers, and the International Foundation of Employee Benefit Plans offer such credential options. Continued education at the doctoral level can enable graduates to seek careers in academia and research. Studies in organizational behavior may be available within the core coursework of Ph.D. programs in Human Resources.

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