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Degree Overview: Master of Business Administration (MBA) Degree in Finance

Majors Overview May 16, 2015

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

Master of Business Administration (M.B.A.) Programs in Finance

Students enrolled in a 2-year Master of Business Administration (M.B.A.) in Finance program often gain experience in a corporate residency. Program graduates may seek a career as a personal financial advisor or financial analyst. Weekend or evening classes are often included to enable working professionals to further their education while continuing to work in their current jobs. Online courses may also be available.

Education Requirements

Admission criteria typically require incoming students to hold a bachelor’s degree, in addition to their undergraduate studies having a specific grade point average. Submission of scores from the Graduate Management Admission Test (GMAT) or Graduate Record Examination (GRE) may be the requirements. Letters of recommendation and essays may also be requirements at some schools.


As similar to other Master of Business Administration (M.B.A.) degree programs, MBA programs emphasizing in finance include courses focused on business strategies, management, and organizational leadership. However, these programs cover more courses in topics such as accounting, financial planning, and economics, among others. Core coursework may include subject areas such as:

•Supply chain management
•Issues in management and organizations
•Study of options and futures
•Decision-making for growth and management
•Corporate finance
•Management information systems

Career Choices

Program graduates can seek management-level roles in the financial world. They may choose from popular career options such as:

•Financial analyst
•Credit manager
•Personal financial advisor

Job and Wage Outlook

Over the 2012 – 2022 decade, a job growth rate of nine percent has been predicted for financial managers, including credit managers and controllers. Over the same period, financial analysts and personal financial advisors are expected to see 16% and 27% growths, respectively (U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics). In May 2012, financial managers brought in an average annual salary of $109,740, while financial analysts and financial advisors earned respective salaries of $76,950 and $67,520 (BLS).

Professional Certification and Continuing Education Choices

Program graduates can pursue continued education by earning Finance Ph.D. degrees. Students usually take 5-6 years to finish these programs, which require the completion of a dissertation focused on original research. An oral test is a requirement prior to the program’s termination.

Professional certifications vary by position sought. For instance, the Certified Financial Planner Board (CFPB) of Standards offers the certified financial planner credential for financial planners (BLS). They can accomplish the certification through the passage of an exam, accompanied by submission of proof of education, three years’ experience, and an agreement to adhere to the CFPB code of ethics.

The Chartered Financial Analyst credential from the CFA Institute can be obtained by financial analysts. They can obtain this certification through the passage of an examination based on the Candidate Body of Knowledge (CBOK). Topics such as financial reporting systems, professional standards and supply and demand are in the exam.

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