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The 15 Best Online MBA Programs

best-online-mbaThough not every business school has even partially adapted to include online learning in their offerings, for a growing number of Masters in Business Management programs, online courses (and even entire programs) are fast becoming a viable alternative to traditional coursework. While publications have decades of practice, and tried and true methodologies for ranking traditional MBA programs, online MBA’s present a new set of challenges to which rankings must adapt. To avoid these complications in finding new methodologies for ranking online MBAs, many organizations that rank traditional MBA programs — Bloomberg BusinessWeek, The Economist, and Forbes — only list online MBA programs. Though both reward different aspects of online MBA programs ( the Financial Times includes international schools, and focuses on change in salary, and US News and World Report lacks student input and weights instruction heavily), the ability of a US program to excel according to both organizations criteria is a good measure of program quality. To adjust for the fact that international programs aren’t included on the US News and World Report list, Financial Times listees have been weighted slightly higher.

Here are our top 15 best online MBA programs of 2014.
Check out our methodology here.

1. University of Indiana-Bloomington

indiana

The University of Indiana Bloomington’s Online MBA program has long been a model for other online MBA’s to follow. As seen from their high rankings on both Financial Times and US News and World Report, this online MBA provides great salary and position growth opportunities as well as world class curriculum and delivery. University of Indiana’s Online MBA also offers great flexibility with the following dual degree MS options:

  • Finance
  • Global Supply Chain Management
  • Marketing
  • Strategic Management

University of Indiana was the first top-20 school to offer online degrees, and continues to lead the way towards greater flexibility and access to high quality education and opportunity. University of Indiana Online MBA is accredited by the Association to Advance Collegiate Schools of Business, the highest accreditation for business graduate schools.

Other Statistics:

  • Total Enrollment: 747
  • 2013-2014 Tuition (per credit): $1,175 (in and out of state)
  • US News Rank: #1
  • FT Rank: #5

2. University of Florida

florida

University of Florida’s Internet MBA option offers one of the most highly ranked MBAs with no difference between traditional and online offerings, in 2-year and 16 month options. Global Immersion Experiences may be added to online curriculum just as with a traditional MBA track, including 2-credit courses spending 7-10 days of intensive work in Argentina, Brazil, United Arab Emirates, Turkey, and China.

Florida Internet MBA students come from a variety of backgrounds including Fortune 500 companies, government agencies, non-profits, and academic spheres. The one-year program is particularly challenging, and includes a list of requirements that must be met to enroll. University of Florida’s Online MBA is accredited by the Association to Advance Collegiate Schools of Business, the highest accreditation for graduate business schools.

Other Statistics:

  • Total Enrollment: 366
  • 2013-2014 Tuition (per credit): $965 (in and out of state)
  • US News Rank: #3
  • FT Rank: #4

3. Arizona State University

arizona_state_university

The University of Arizona Online MBA is highly ranked by both the Financial Times and the US News and World Report. Campus study and residencies are not required, and 99% of students graduate within 5 years. A variety of specializations and dual degree programs are available to online students, including:

  • Finance
  • International Business
  • Marketing
  • Management of Technology
  • Supply Chain Management
  • MBA/Master in Legal Studies
  • MBA/MSE Electrical Engineering
  • MBA/MS Industrial Engineering

Arizona State University’s online MBA is accredited by the Association to Advance Collegiate Schools of Business, the highest accreditation for graduate business schools.

Other Statistics:

  • Total Enrollment: 588
  • 2013-2014 Tuition (per credit): $1,130 (in and out of state)
  • US News Rank: #2
  • FT Rank: #10

4. IE Business School

if_business

IE Business School has the #1 ranked online MBA program worldwide according to theFinancial Times largely due to high post-graduate salary, salary increase, female and international students (9/10 students are international).

With over 500 professors, and a variety of programs, if you’re interested in attending a top online MBA program, IE has something for you. The Online Global MBA takes 15 months to complete, requires brief residential periods in Madrid (Spain) and is attended by students with an average of 6 years professional experience. The Online Executive MBA program is attended by students with an average of 12 years working experience, takes 14 months to complete, and requires brief residential periods in Spain, Singapore, the US, and Brazil. The IE Business school online programs are accredited by the Association to Advance Collegiate Schools of Business, the highest accreditation for graduate business schools.

Other Statistics:

  • 2013-2014 Tuition: Ä43,200
  • US News Rank: Not Ranked
  • FT Rank: #1

5. University of Nebraska (Lincoln)

university_of_nebraska_lincoln

University of Nebraska’s top ranked online MBA is also one of the cheapest on our list making it a particularly good value. Ranking highly on both the Financial Times and US News and World Report rankings means that University of Nebraska offers both a good return on your money, international mobility, and has high quality academic instruction. A number of unique specializations may be pursued in the online MBA including:

  • Business Analytics
  • Supply Chain Management
  • International Business
  • Agribusiness
  • Finance
  • Marketing

Though the average age of program entrants is 30, if you are a student without much full-time work experience, it’s expected that you complete internships or consulting work. Joint programs include Architecture/MBA and a JD/MBA program. The University of Nebraska’s online MBA program is accredited by the Association to Advance Collegiate Schools of Business, the highest accreditation for graduate business schools.

Other Statistics:

  • Total Enrollment: 190
  • 2013-2014 Tuition (per credit): $531 (in and out of state)
  • US News Rank: #6
  • FT Rank: #12

6. Warwick Business School

warwick_business

Warwick University’s 30 year old distance learning MBA is ranked #2 in the world by the Financial Times and offers a 3 year program that can be even speedier with the use of optional residencies. A typical course of study works through seven core modules including:

  • Accounting and Financial Management
  • Economics of the Business Environment
  • Marketing
  • Modelling and Analysis of Management
  • Operations Management
  • Organizational Behavior
  • Strategic Advantage

Each year around 45 elective modules are available to choose from. Students also work on consulting projects and write a 15,000 word dissertation. The Warwick Distance Learning MBA is accredited by European Quality Improvement System.

Other Statistics:

  • Total Enrollment:185
  • 2013-2014 Tuition: £22,500
  • US News Rank: Not Ranked
  • FT Rank: #2

7. Northeastern University D’amore-Mckim

northeastern

Northeastern University’s Online MBA is ranked #1 in America, and #3 globally by the Financial Times pointing to high scores in international mobility, student goals met, and high salary increases after graduation. A large number of specializations are available, as well as a dual Masters in Finance/MBA combination. Specializations include:

  • Finance
  • Healthcare Management
  • High Tech Management
  • Innovation Entrepreneurship
  • International Management
  • Marketing
  • Supply Chain Management
  • Sustainability

Optional residencies may also be completed with the Northeastern University Online MBA. Students completing the International Management specialization may wish to take advantage of first hand business experience abroad. Recent locations have included China, Russia, Greece/Turkey, and Chile/Peru. Domestic residencies may be completed at Boston, Charlotte, or Seattle. The Northeastern University online MBA is accredited by the Association to Advance Collegiate Schools of Business, the highest accreditation for graduate business schools.

Other Statistics:

  • Total Enrollment: 1,539
  • 2013-2014 Tuition(per credit): $1,385 (in and out-of-state)
  • US News Rank: #51
  • FT Rank: #3

8. University of Texas–Dallas

texas_dallas

This highly ranked online MBA program is expected to take up to 72 months of work (depending on specialization) year around to complete. Students can choose from a wide variety of concentrations including:

  • Accounting
  • Finance
  • Healthcare Management
  • Information Systems
  • Innovation and Entrepreneurship
  • Internal Audit
  • International Management
  • Leadership in Organizations
  • Marketing
  • Real Estate
  • Strategic Management
  • Supply Chain Management

65% of students are employed at the time they enter the program. The University of Texas-Dallas Professional MBA Online is accredited by the Association to Advance Collegiate Schools of Business, the highest accreditation for graduate business schools.

Other Statistics:

  • Total Enrollment: 1,117
  • 2013-2014 Tuition(per credit): $663 (in-state) $1,200 (out-of-state)
  • US News Rank: #4
  • FT Rank: Not Ranked

9. Durham University

durham

Durham University’s online MBA is ranked #1 for Value for money rank by the Financial Times. The Global MBA offers a exclusively online experience that is expected to take 3-4 years to complete. Seven core modules make up the first half of the program: managing in the global environment, managing in the competitive environment, improving management decision-making, managing finance, managing people, strategic management, and methods of inquiry.

The second half of the program focuses on electives and a 15,000 business project (dissertation) in which your business analytic skills are tested. Residencies are available in Durham or Frankfurt, and summer school in Durham is also an option. The University of Durham’s Global MBA is accredited by the by the Association to Advance Collegiate Schools of Business, the highest accreditation for graduate business schools.

Other Statistics:

  • Total Enrollment: Not Listed
  • 2013-2014 Tuition: £19,000
  • US News Rank:Not Ranked
  • FT Rank: #6

10. University of West Georgia

west_georgia

Offered to highly qualified students, the University of West Georgia offers a convenient and flexible online MBA held exclusively online. Enrolled in two courses per semester the program length is 5 semesters. Student engagement is ranked highly for West Georgia’s Web MBA. Other notable features include over 60% female students, an incredibly high percentage compared to other schools.

The University of West Georgia is accredited by the Association to Advance Collegiate Schools in Business, the highest accreditation for graduate business programs.

Other Statistics:

  • Total Enrollment: 57
  • 2013-2014 Tuition (per credit): $700 (in and out of state)
  • US News Rank: #4
  • FT Rank: Not Ranked

11. Babson College Olin

babson

Babson College’s Blended MBA program features online training and face-to-face sessions that are held at San Fransisco (CA) and Wellesley (MA) campuses approximately once every seven weeks. Featured highly on Financial Times and ranked number 1 for a number of years on US News and World Report’s entrepreneurship rankings for 21 years Babson excels in both quality of teaching and future career outcomes. As with any top program, retention rate is important, and the average time to complete Babson’s online MBA is 2 years, with 100% of students finishing in five years.

Class demographics for Babson’s blended MBA program include 9.5 years of professional experience on average, 29% female students, and 7% international students. Babson’s Blended MBA program is accredited by Association to Advance Collegiate Schools of Business, the New England Association of Schools and Colleges, and the European Quality Improvement System.

Other Statistics:

  • Total Enrollment: 144
  • 2013-2014 Tuition: $77,200 (in and out of state)
  • US News Rank: Not Ranked
  • FT Rank: #7

12. Washington State University

washington_statePNG

The Washington State University Online MBA Program seeks to provide a global perspective on business strategy and development. Not only do students receive training in innovative thinking, and the basics of management, but they also learn to recognize the ethical, global, and societal issues at stake in the modern globalized economy. Concentrations include (1) marketing, with a focus on international marketing, consumer behavior, and advertising. (2) International business focuses on international marketing, international finance, and international business management. (3) Finance focuses on international finance, investment analysis, and interest rates and financial markets.

92% of students are employed as professionals at the time at which they enroll with an average age of new entrants set at 35 years of age. It is important to note that Washington State University’s Online MBA is accredited by the Association to Advance Collegiate Schools in Business, the highest standard in business school accreditation.

Other Statistics:

  • Total Enrollment: 212
  • 2013-2014 Tuition (per credit): $750 (in and out of state)
  • US News Rank: #7
  • FT Rank: Not Ranked

13. Thunderbird School of Global Management

thunderbird

The Thunderbird School of Global Management’s Global MBA Online is designed for working professionals and other learners to deliver coursework on all facets of global management, cross-cultural communications/negotiations, global political economy, and regional business environments. Two years of work experience are recommended, yet the average student has 7.8 years of work experience. The average age of students at Thunderbird is 34, with 52% of students coming from abroad.

The global MBA Online program is a blended program, meaning the program gives students the option to join onsite seminars with peers and teachers around the globe. A majority of coursework, however, is online, featuring access to coursework from anywhere, online lectures, interactive chats, and online collaboration with both professors and classmates. The Global MBA Online is accredited by the Association to Advance Collegiate Schools of Business, the highest standard of business school accreditation.

Other Statistics:

  • Total Enrollment: 212
  • 2013-2014 Tuition (per credit): $1,335 (in and out of state)
  • US News Rank: #51
  • FT Rank: #8

14. Boston University

boston_university

US News ranks a number of Boston University’s online administrative studies programs as top online graduate management classes. For online master’s in administrative studies, the masters in International Marketing Management, and the certificate in Risk Management & Organizational Continuity fit the bill. Other related programs include Banking & Financial Services Management (master’s), Computer Information Systems (master’s), Health Communication (master’s), Human Resources Management (master’s), and Insurance Management (master’s).

Presented by Boston University’s Metropolitan College, all graduate online programs are billed at $840 per credit — the part-time tuition rate. This is fortunate as 99% of students are also holding down professional jobs. If you’re interested, admissions are rolling. Online graduate business programs at Boston University are accredited by the Association to Advance Collegiate Schools of Business, the highest standard of business school accreditation.

Other Statistics:

  • Total Enrollment: 738
  • 2013-2014 Tuition (per credit): $840 (in and out of state)
  • US News Rank: #8
  • FT Rank: Not Ranked

15. Syracuse University

syracuse

Syracuse began their online MBA program in the 2001-2002 academic year. Notable features of Whitman Online MBA@Syracuse include the fact that all students are working professionals. The program features live video chats with faculty, and curricular content identical to the on-campus program.

Five specialization areas are available to online MBA students: accounting, entrepreneurship, finance, marketing management, and supply chain management.Students have the chance to attend up to 4 residencies a year, in which they can meet face to face with professors in worldwide locations for a Friday, Saturday, and Sunday at the start of a session. Online graduate business programs at Syracuse are accredited by the Association to Advance Collegiate Schools in Business, the highest standard of business school accreditation.

Other Statistics:

  • Total Enrollment: 316
  • 2013-2014 Tuition (per credit): $1,294 (in and out of state)
  • US News Rank: #39
  • FT Rank: #9

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