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Online Master of Business Administration (MBA) Degree Program Overview

Majors Overview May 23, 2015

Get information about online Master of Business Administration (MBA) degree programs and their program requirements and information, common courses, career information, and continuing education choices.

Information on Online Master of Business Administration Program

Many schools offer online MBA programs that include various courses and train students for careers in business. These programs are mainly devised to help working professionals who can complete them entirely online; they allow students to access course materials whenever they want, subject to some deadlines.

Students enrolled in other programs are required to complete some coursework on campus. They may also have to meet a few on-site requirements, including learning opportunities at business organizations.

Admission criteria typically require incoming students to hold a bachelor’s degree and an acceptable GMAT score. Students enrolled in most programs are required to complete undergraduate courses in business topic areas such as marketing, accounting, and organizational behavior. Students enrolled in other schools are allowed to complete these prerequisite classes before they begin core coursework.

It takes about two years of full-time study for students to complete most MBA programs while part-time students may need more time. Coursework covers many business areas, including leadership, finance, and management, through research, classes, and projects. Students are taught about analyzing data and making sound business decisions. Human resources development is studied by them and methods of strategic business planning explored. Students enrolled in some programs are allowed to opt for a concentration such as information technology, marketing, or accounting.

Online MBA Programs

Various management, business, and finance courses are typically included in online MBA programs wherein graduates learn about playing effective leadership roles in a dynamic and competitive workplace. Students gain expertise in information analysis, human resources, management leadership and strategic planning, via experiential learning techniques, courses, and projects.

Admission criteria typically require incoming students to take the Graduate Management Admission Test (GMAT) and hold a bachelor’s degree before they can gain admittance to the online MBA program. Related online MBA degrees with concentrations in strategic management or marketing may also be required to be completed by applicants.

Program Requirements and Information

While students need two years to complete online MBA degree programs, part-time students enrolled in some schools are allowed as much as five years to complete the program. While schools offer most courses online, on-campus residencies may be required in some programs wherein students are given a hands-on perspective on companies and their operations. Web-based communication tools, such as email and instant messenger, are used to facilitate interaction.

Students are required to have a computer with a word processing software and access to the Internet. In some programs, students may also be required to download Java and iTunes/QuickTime plug-ins, Flash Player, Adobe Reader, and software.

Common Online Courses in Business Administration

Depending on the level of education previously completed by them, students may have to take coursework in management, marketing, finance, and accounting. Core coursework commonly covers marketing, accounting, and strategic planning.

Financial Accounting Course

Reports and financial systems in business transactions in the workplace are in this course. The course emphasizes the application of accounting tools, analysis of financial information and preparation of financial statements.

Marketing Course

An overview of marketing strategies is in this course, in addition to ways of implementing marketing plans in nonprofit and for-profit firms. Students examine environmental and behavioral aspects that affect marketing decisions.

Organizational Behavior Course

Organizational performance, in addition to decision processes and systems analysis, is in this course. Students learn about understanding behavior and explore the relations between management and organizational behavior.

Career Information

Program graduates may seek various executive-level positions in business, such as vice president of operations, chief executive officer, and chief financial officer. In May 2012, 2,303,200 individuals were employed as chief executives in the United States (U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics). During this period, the average annual wage was $101,650. In the 2012 – 2022, little change was expected in the job growth of chief executives.

Continuing Education Choices

Program graduates may seek continued education by enrolling in Ph.D. in Business Administration or Doctor of Business Administration (D.B.A.) degree programs. They may also volunteer for professional certification; the Institute of Certified Professional Managers certified Manager (CM) certification for management professionals.

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