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The 15 Best Online Communications MBA Degree Programs for 2019

Every day someone begins the journey of considering an MBA. They may be a young working professional with a few years of work experience and a fresh undergraduate degree in business or a seasoned veteran with decades of professional experience under their belt. The question of why to consider an MBA is an important one to ask. A Master’s of Business Administration can open many doors for those seeking mid and upper-level positions in business. The next question to ask after deciding on an MBA is what type to pursue and where to attain it.

The online MBA in communications is an excellent choice for students with a background in business or marketing who want to get an edge on their industry. The business basics which are covered in an MBA’s core curriculum help to set a foundation which the specialization will be built on. Areas of accounting, marketing, economics, and finance are all covered during the majority of credits which make up the core coursework.

The concentration courses within an online communications MBA focus more on social sciences that professionals need to have a keen understanding of before being able to perform their work tasks effectively. Managers holding communications positions must be able to communicate well to an organization’s stakeholders, bridge the gap between cultures when processing subject matter to different departments and customer bases. These professionals must also know how to utilize social media, know the ins and outs of public relations, and get the most out of qualitative research methods.

Many of the nation’s top business schools currently offer online communications MBA programs. These programs vary in length and expense. Some are 100% online degrees that require no campus visits from start to finish while others offer a hybrid experience with short residencies every few months, which allow for networking and face time with instructors.

With so many choices out there for high-quality online MBAs, we have put a ranking of some of the very best in communications.

Methodology

There are many factors to consider before going back to school. Will this degree get me where I want to go? Will it be worth it? Ultimately, prospective students want to know what kind of value the degree will have, and that is what we look for as well. To rank the top online Communications MBA programs, we took into account their Quality of Classes (33%), their Support Services for distance students (33%), and their Affordability (33%). By considering this data, this ranking can help students find programs of value that meet their current needs and put them on the road to their future career in the communications industry.

Each online Communications MBA is given an Affordability Score based upon their base tuition for the degree and is placed on the spectrum from Very Affordable to Very Expensive. Ranges are as follows:

Very Affordable: under $15,000
Affordable: between $15,000 and $20,000
Average: between $20,000 and $30,000
Above Average: between $30,000 and $50,000
Expensive: between $50,000 and $100,000
Very Expensive: above $100,000

#1 National University School of Business and Management – La Jolla, California


The School of Business and Management at National University features an online Master’s of Business Administration with a specialization in Integrated Marketing Communication. This 16-course degree is backed by the IACBE and is delivered 100% online.

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An online Master’s of Business Administrations with an Integrated Marketing Communication concentration is offered by the School of Business and Management at National University. Financial Management, Supply Chain Management, Human Resources Management, International Business, Management Accounting, Marketing, Mobile Marketing and Social Media, and Organizational Leadership are the other concentrations offered within this online MBA. National has designed this degree to consist of sixteen courses/63-quarter-units of coursework. Coming in at under $30,000 in total tuition, it’s considered average in affordability. This top-dog program is certainly celebrated by U.S News & World Report. The respected ranking entity has deemed it excellent in the area of student services for online distance learners and has given a nod to the School of Business and Management as the 156th best place to pursue an online MBA.

The School of Business Administration is accredited by the International Assembly for Collegiate Business Education while National University holds a regional accreditation from the Western Association of Schools and Colleges, Senior College and University Commission. The curriculum within this program promises to prepare online students for successful leadership positions in an array of business settings by providing them with the skills and ability to successfully manage in the midst of an ever-changing business atmosphere. The degree includes the conceptual understanding and application of decision-making tools housed in basic business realms, including accounting, data analysis, economics, management, finance, and leadership. Distance learners are given the tools needed for effective team-building and qualitative and quantitative problem-solving. National University’s online MBA includes courses like Marketing Management, Statistics for Business, Organization Management & Leadership Global Business, Economics for Managerial Decisions, Managerial Accounting and Managerial Support Systems.

Accreditation: IACBE, Western Association of Schools and Colleges, Senior College and University Commission
Affordability Score: Average

#2 Texas A&M University-Kingsville College of Business Administration – Kingsville, Texas


An online MBA with a certificate in Collaboration and Team Dynamics is delivered by Texas A&M University-Kingsville’s College of Business Administration. Flexibility and convenience are hallmarks of this 100% online MBA.

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Texas A&M University-Kingsville’s College of Business Administration provides an online Master’s of Business Administration with a certificate in Collaboration and Team Dynamics. Other certificates associated with this online MBA include Energy Finance and Logistics, Health Informatics, and Business Analytics. The College of Business Administration has been heralded as the 108th best place in the nation to pursue an online MBA by U.S. News & World Report. The ranking entity has also given a nod to the business school for giving online students excellent student services in a variety of ways. Of our top-five degrees in communications, this 33-credit hour program is the most affordable; being available for less than $15,000 in total tuition. Of its 33-credit hours, twenty-one are core credits and twelve are certificate credits. The AACSB accredits Texas A&M University-Kingsville’s business school. A bachelor’s degree from an accredited school, MBA program prerequisite courses, and 420 GMAT or 294 GRE are what will need to be submitted to the business school’s admissions office in order to begin the acceptance process. There is a GMAT/GRE waiver for candidates who meet the qualifying criteria. This can save time and money by getting students into the program sooner with one less step to take.

Economics and Managerial Decision Making, Financial Management and Sustainability, Information Systems and Business Analytics, Leading a Sustainable Organization, Accounting and Value Creation, and Marketing Management and Value Creation are just some of the core courses included in this program. This very affordable online MBA is just one of the programs sought after by the 8,674 students enrolled at Texas A&M University-Kingsville. The university is home of the Javelinas and opened its doors in 1925. Located in Kingsville, Texas, the university features three levels of degrees.

Accreditation: AACSB, Southern Association of Colleges and Schools, Commission on Colleges
Affordability Score: Very Affordable

#3 Western Kentucky University Gordon Ford College of Business – Bowling Green, Kentucky


An online MBA with a graduate certificate in Communicating in Organizations or graduate certificate in Communicating in Healthcare is offered in the Gordon Ford College of Business at Western Kentucky University. This 39-credit hour program benefits from the business school’s business accreditation through the AACSB.

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Western Kentucky University provides an online Master’s of Business Administration with a graduate certificate in Communicating in Organizations and a graduate certificate in Communicating in Healthcare at the Gordon Ford College of Business. Business Sustainability, Lean Six Sigma, Communicating in Organizations, Organizational Leadership, and Nonprofit Administration are other emphases associated with this degree. With a total tuition rate of less than $30,000, this degree offers the distance learner a lot of value when factoring in a very strong curriculum. One huge advantage this 33-credit hour program has going for it is the business school’s being accredited by the AACSB. Students within this distance program are exposed to cutting edge technologies and theories of business disciplines across the board. Gordon Ford College of Business students learn how to apply these concepts to effective leadership within a multitude of environments. Real-time business issues are dealt with under the mentoring guidance of experienced instructors, most of whom are respected leaders in their fields. The Gordon Ford College of Business has been dubbed by U.S. News & World Report as providing the 72nd best online MBA in the nation. U.S. News & World Report also claims the business school offers exceptional student services to its online students.

This online MBA with a focus in Communicating in Organizations and Communicating in Healthcare is just one of the top-shelf degrees offered at Western Kentucky University. The university has a campus in Bowling Green, Kentucky and has been offering excellent education since 1906. The school got its start as Western Kentucky State Normal School and originally founded by Henry Hardin Cherry. The Southern Association of Colleges and Schools, Commission on Colleges provides Western Kentucky’s ample regional accreditation.

Accreditation: AACSB, Southern Association of Colleges and Schools, Commission on Colleges
Affordability Score: Average

#4 Concordia University Wisconsin Batterman School of Business – Mequon, Wisconsin


An online MBA in Communications and Public Relations is provided by Concordia University Wisconsin’s Batterman School of Business. This MBA program delivers an unparalleled curriculum within a 100% online format.

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Concordia University Wisconsin delivers an online Master’s of Business Administration in Communications and Public Relations through their Batterman School of Business. Sustainability Management and Analytics, Strategic Marketing, Global Health Care Administration, Sport and Entertainment Business, Innovation and Entrepreneurship, International Business, Management, and Nonprofit Management and Leadership are other high-quality emphases which can be pursued within this online MBA. U.S News & World Report delivers high marks to this program for offering exceptional student services to online students. The well-respected ranking group has also ranked the Batterman School of Business at #184 among the nation’s best online degrees. This averagely-affordable program can be completed for less than $29,999 in total tuition. The International Assembly for Collegiate Business Education accredits the Batterman School of Business. CU Wisconsin is no stranger to excellent online learning. Their long track record, excellent accreditation, and attractive price point, make this communications MBA a great choice for any professional.

Flying the colors of Sunrise Gold and Lake Blue, Concordia University Wisconsin is regionally accredited by the Higher Learning Commission. The university was first known as Concordia College Milwaukee when it opened its doors in 1881 as an all-male school. Women students were accepted to the school in 1964, and in 1989 the school became a full-fledged university. Concordia University Wisconsin maintains a student body of just under 7,300. The business school asks for items like the completion of an application, resume, references, and all transcripts to be sent to the admissions office in order to begin the acceptance process.

Accreditation: IACBE, Higher Learning Commission
Affordability Score: Average

#5 West Virginia University College of Business and Economics – Morgantown, West Virginia


An online MBA with an area of emphasis in Integrated Marketing Communications is delivered by West Virginia University’s College of Business and Economics. The business school has designed this degree to equip tomorrow’s business leaders.

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West Virginia University provides an online Master’s of Business Administration degrees with a concentration in Integrated Marketing Communications. A balanced approach to distance learning is a priority for this four-credit hour hybrid program with asynchronous learning that stresses convenience and networking. Graduate students will need just two years to complete this degree which begins two times a year, in January and August. Of the four shirt residencies included in this degree, one takes place in Washington DC and another at the ropes course at West Virginia University. The ropes course experience offers intentional team-building exercises that go a long way in encouraging students to face their fears, work together to solve problems, and experience success on a number of levels. The online MBA at WVU is one of the best in the country for service people in the United States military. The business school offers a course study specifically designed for military personnel. All courses housed within this Marketing Communications online MBA are worth three credit hours. Most students register for nine credit hours over the fall and spring semesters and then choose six semester hours over each summer. Most courses in the fall and spring last just a half semester, so no more than two classes are completed each semester.

The College of Business and Economics is accredited by the Association to Advance Collegiate Schools of Business while West Virginia University is regionally accredited by the Higher Learning Commission. WVU started as the Agricultural College of West Virginia in 1867. Today the university is based in Morgantown, West Virginia and features a large student enrollment of over 28,000. The university provides bachelor’s, master’s, and doctoral degrees. West Virginia University’s business school has been deemed the 47th best business school in the country for an online MBA according to U.S. News & World Report.

Accreditation: AACSB, Higher Learning Commission
Affordability Score: Above Average

#6 Brenau University School of Business – Gainesville, Georgia


An online MBA with a Communications Management focus is delivered by Brenau University’s School of Business. This 42-credit hour distance degree shines with an excellent curriculum.

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Brenau University’s School of Business offers an online Master’s of Business Administration with a concentration in Communications Management. The business school at Brenau has been recognized by U.S. News & World Report for providing some of the best student services for online students in the nation. The reputable ranking entity has also named this as the 146th best online MBA in the country. This 42-credit hour program in Communications Management is accredited by the Accreditation Council for Business Schools and Programs and features a total tuition price of less than $30,000 revealing an excellent value for such a high-quality distance degree. The curriculum for this program has been infused with theoretical methods and pragmatic techniques that combine to equip tomorrow’s business leaders. Cross-Cultural Business Challenges, Marketing Management, Integrated Business Operations, Budgeting for Managers, Managerial Leadership, and Financial Management are some of the core courses found within this program. Communication Management-intensive major courses include Communication Consulting and Training, Media Industries and Business Practices, Negotiation and Mediation, Communication in Society, and Communication Seminar.

The Southern Association of Colleges and Schools, Commission on Colleges regionally accredits Brenau University. The school’s main campus is in Gainesville, Georgia. The university got its start as an all-female college committed to training young women for careers in ministry. The school was initially called Georgia Baptist Female Seminary and dates back to 1878. Male students were welcomed into the school in the mid-sixties when Brenau became a co-ed campus. This private nonprofit university offers degrees to associate through doctoral students. There are currently 2,932 students taking classes at Brenau, both on campus and online through distance learning.

Accreditation: ACBSP, Southern Association of Colleges and Schools, Commission on Colleges
Affordability Score: Average

#7 Liberty University School of Business – Lynchburg, Virginia


The School of Business at Liberty University features an online Master’s of Business Administration in Public Relations. The Accreditation Council for Business Schools and Programs accredits this excellent online degree.

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An online MBA with a concentration in Public Relations is provided by the School of Business at Liberty University. Accounting, Criminal Justice Administration, American Legal Studies, Finance, Human Resources, Healthcare Management, International Business, Leadership, International Legal Studies, Marketing, Nonprofit Leadership and Management, Supply Chain Management and Logistics, Project Management, and Strategic Management are the other specializations offered with the online MBA. The curriculum of Liberty’s MBA is rooted in the foundational themes of business leadership including accounting, finance, economics, and marketing. The concentration track offered by the business school is intended to match a student with a specific field of study that will help develop a passion for influencing others in business leadership. The total tuition rate for this forty-five credit hour program comes in at less than $30,000. The Accreditation Council for Business Schools and Programs is responsible for accrediting this Public Relations online MBA.

Initially established as Lynchburg Baptist College in 1971, Liberty University is currently the nation’s largest nonprofit private institution of higher learning. The school provides undergraduate and graduate programs to over 75,000 students seeking degrees on the campus in Lynchburg, Virginia and online through distance learning. Liberty has been offering correspondence courses for over 30 years. The first distance education Liberty University provided was recorded classroom lectured which were recorded and mailed to students as VHS cassette tapes. Liberty is home of the Flames and receives its regional accreditation through the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools, Commission on Colleges. Featured courses within Liberty’s online MBA with a Public Relations focus include Strategic Communication Campaigns for the Digital Age, Communications & Conflict, Contemporary Issues in Human Resource Management, and Media Technologies & Communication Strategies.

Accreditation: ACBSP, Southern Association of Colleges and Schools, Commission on Colleges
Affordability Score: Average

#8 Webster University Walker School of Business and Technology – Saint Louis, Missouri


An online MBA with a Media Communications emphasis is delivered by Webster University’s Walker School of Business and Technology. Flexibility and convenience are two hallmarks of this excellent 48-credit hour program.

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Webster University’s Walker School of Business and Technology provides an online Master’s of Business Administration with a concentration in Media Communications. General, Business and Organizational Security Management, Environmental Management, Health Administration, Human Resources Development, Human Resources Management, International Business, Management and Leadership, International Relations, Marketing, Procurement and Acquisitions Management, and Project Management are the other emphases students can choose from within this online MBA. The Accreditation Council for Business Schools and Programs accredits this above averagely-priced 48-credit hour program. An online MBA of this caliber for less than $50,000 is a remarkable find. The Media Communications-intensive courses associated with this degree include Seminar in Media Communications, Media Production Management, International Communications, Media and Culture, Media Communications, and Media Organization and Regulations.

U.S. News has deemed this program one of the nation’s best in regard to various services available to online students. The trusted ranking entity has also awarded Webster University’s business school as the 182nd best place in the country to pursue an online MBA. Webster has been educating students since 1915 when the Sisters of Loretto set out to educate women. Located in Saint Louis, Missouri, Webster operates as a private nonprofit college offering degrees to 12,736 students pursuing bachelor’s, master’s, and doctoral programs. The Higher Learning Commission regionally accredits Webster University. Marketing, Applied Business Statistics, Organizational Behavior, Finance, Management Accounting, Advanced Corporate Finance, Operations and Project Management, and Managerial Economics are just some of the core courses delivered in Webster’s high-quality online MBA.

Accreditation: ACBSP, Higher Learning Commission
Affordability Score: Above Average

#9 Southeastern Oklahoma State University John Massey School of Business – Durant, Oklahoma


Southeastern Oklahoma State University’s John Massey School of Business provides an online Master’s of Business Administration with a Strategic Communication emphasis. This 36-credit hour online program features a solid curriculum and a very affordable tuition rate.

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The John Massey School of Business at Southeastern Oklahoma State University delivers an online Master’s of Business Administration with a specialization in Strategic Communication. Accounting, Entrepreneurship, Aerospace Logistics, Finance, Hospitality Management, Healthcare Information Systems, Human Resources, Management, Native American Leadership, Marketing, and Safety are other emphases to choose from in the program. Students less-interested in an emphasis can pursue this program as a general MBA. Behavioral Management, Research Methods, Accounting for Managers, Marketing Management, Financial Management, Data Analysis for Managers, Contemporary Issues, and Principle Centered Leadership and Ethics are some of the core courses offered in this degree which can be attained for less than $15,000 in total tuition. Students pursuing this very affordable, 36-credit hour distance degree can complete all program requirements in just one year.

It is a rare occurrence in higher education to find a top-quality business school that enjoys business accreditation from the AACSB offering a remarkable curriculum at a very affordable tuition rate. The John Massey School of Business at Southeastern Oklahoma State University has done just that. Southeastern Oklahoma State is a public university in Durant, Oklahoma which is regionally accredited by the Higher Learning Commission. Over 4,000 students pursue degrees at SOSU. The university got its start as Southeastern State Normal School in 1909. The business school has divided the online MBA between 30 hours of core credit and six hours of Strategic Communication-centric courses. The two concentration courses required for this degree are Crisis Communication and Strategic Communication.

Accreditation: AACSB, Higher Learning Commission
Affordability Score: Very Affordable

#10 Western New England University College of Business – Springfield, Massachusetts


Western New England University’s College of Business features an online Master’s of Business Administration with a Public Relations emphasis. Delivered by a seasoned staff of educators, this online MBA shines with a robust curriculum.

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The College of Business at Western New England University provides an online Master’s of Business Administration with a specialization in Public Relations. Business Law, Accounting, and Leadership can also be pursued as concentrations in this online MBA. This distance degree is a perfect fit for graduates who want to use elements like crisis communication, brand enticement, and consumer interaction as PR strategies. Professionals with a desire to work within the corporate world, sports industry, and beyond will benefit from the program’s telecom teaching staff. The bulk of this online MBA consists of core credits while nine credit hours are Public Relations-focused electives like Public Relations for Nonprofits, Strategic Approaches to Public Relations, Crisis Management and Public Relations, and Strategies for Social and Digital Media. The College at Western New England is accredited through the AACSB while the university receives its regional accreditation through the New England Commission of Higher Education. U.S News & World Report calls the school the 205th best location in the country to pursue an online MBA.

Springfield, Massachusetts is the home of Western New England University while the school’s mascot is the Golden Bears. WNEU is a private nonprofit university that delivers associate through doctoral programs on campus and through distance learning. Three thousand seven hundred seventy-six students currently attend the school. Springfield Division of Northeastern College was the school’s first name when it opened its doors to a class of just over a dozen students in 1919. Today, the school’s athletics program competes within the NCAA Division II. Western New England University’s online MBA can be completed in as few as eighteen months when pursued as an accelerated program. There is a GMAT waiver for qualifying students.

Accreditation: AACSB, New England Commission of Higher Education
Affordability Score: Above Average

#11 Murray State University Arthur J. Bauernfeind College of Business – Murray, Kentucky


Murray State University offers an online Master’s of Business Administration with a concentration in Global Communications at the Arthur J. Bauernfeind College of Business. This affordable 10-course online MBA is delivered 100% online.

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The Arthur J. Bauernfeind College of Business at Murray State University provides an online Master’s of Business Administration with a Global Communications focus. The MBA also features specializations in Finance, Economics, Marketing, and is delivered as a general MBA. Admission requirements for this program include the completion of an application for graduate admission, an application fee of $40, and all official school transcripts submitted to the admissions office. Murray State has priced this affordable distance degree at less than $20,000 in total tuition. The business school welcomes interested applicants to contact the school and schedule a campus visit. Some of the excellent courses included in this degree are New Technologies, Strategic Communication, Communicating in the International Business Environment, Interpersonal Communication at Work, Communication Technology in Organizations, Seminar in Crisis Communication, and Leadership Communication.

Murray State’s Arthur J. Bauernfeind College of Business receives its business accreditation through the prestigious AACSB while the university is regionally accredited by the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools, Commission on Colleges. The school dates back to 1922 when it began training future public-school teachers for careers in education as Murray State Normal School in Murray, Kentucky. The university’s business school makes quality communication to its applicants and students a top priority by presenting the bulk of all program information available on the school’s website. Candidates with questions that cannot find answers on the site have been encouraged to contact representatives of the Arthur J. Bauernfeind College of Business with needs, and a response should be returned within 24 hours.

Accreditation: AACSB, Southern Association of Colleges and Schools, Commission on Colleges
Affordability Score: Affordable

#12 Olivet Nazarene University School of Graduate and Continuing Studies – Bourbonnais, Illinois


The School of Graduate and Continuing Studies at Olivet Nazarene University features an online Master’s of Business Administration with a Corporate Communications & Media Strategy concentration. Featuring a top-shelf curriculum, this degree is one you won’t want to pass on.

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An online MBA with a specialization in Corporate Communications & Media Strategy is delivered by the School of Graduate and Continuing Studies at Olivet Nazarene University. Leadership, Healthcare, and Nonprofits are other emphases delivered with this online MBA. The business school holds the 205th spot among the very best places in the world to pursue an online MBA. The curriculum has been constructed to allow students to hone key management skills that business professionals need to understand and positively-affect the current workplace, solve problems, allocate resources, and effectively advance organizations. This program’s purpose is to examine ethical and legal issues, financial, communication, and economic practices, and problem-solving skills necessary to those in leadership roles across a wide bandwidth of business environments. A total tuition rate of under $30,000 is included with this Corporate Communications & Media Strategy online MBA. The accelerated format for the degree includes courses that start every eight weeks. The 36-credit hour distance program can be completed in 18 months to two years. Start dates are three times a year.

The 94% retention rate advertised by Olivet Nazarene University reveals a student body of 4,986 that is satisfied with the education it receives. The school features a campus in Bourbonnais, Illinois and is home of the Tigers. Olivet Nazarene is regionally accredited through the Higher Learning Commission and provides associate through doctoral degrees to its students. The university got its start under the leadership of Miss Mary Nesbitt as a grammar school. Admission into the university’s online MBA requires a candidate completing an application and showing the completion of an undergraduate degree with a cumulative GPA of at least 2.5.

Accreditation: Higher Learning Commission
Affordability Score: Average

#13 Bellevue University College of Business – Bellevue, Nebraska


An online MBA with a concentration in Professional Communication is provided at Bellevue University’s College of Business. The business school is backed by the IACBE, and this degree shines with a high-quality curriculum.

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The College of Business at Bellevue University offers an online Master’s of Business Administration with an emphasis in Professional Communication. Acquisition and Contract Management, Business Analytics, Entrepreneurship, Executive Coaching, Healthcare, Human Capital Management, Interdisciplinary Business, Human Resource Management, International Management, Management, Management Information Systems, Marketing, Project Management, and Supply Chain Management are the other exemplary specializations that accompany this online MBA. Measurable success is the name of the game with Bellevue’s online MBA as it stresses the formulation and practicing of real-world business skills in a dynamic and evolving world marketplace. Horizons are expanded with intentional exposure to diverse business leaders offering a wide range of academic and professional experiences to distance learners. The seasoned staff of the College of Business has included case studies and relevant simulations into the curriculum of this program to better equip students for being able to make sound leadership decisions and solve problems within an array of business environments.

This averagely-priced online MBA in Professional Communication can be attained with less than $30,000 in total tuition invested. The International Assembly for Collegiate Business Education accredits Bellevue’s business school, while the university itself is regionally accredited by the Higher Learning Commission. Bellevue was founded in 1966 and stressed the need for higher education for working adults from day one. The school still holds this as a top priority as the majority of its student body of 8,655 are in their mid-twenties. “Real Learning for Real Life” is the university’s motto and purple and gold are its official colors. Bellevue’s online MBA in Professional Communication includes Conflict and Negotiation, Leadership and Organizational Communication, Intro to Business and Professional Communication, and Interpersonal and Intercultural Communication as its specialized courses.

Accreditation: IACBE, Higher Learning Commission
Affordability Score: Average

#14 Messiah College School of Graduate Studies – Mechanicsburg, Pennsylvania


Messiah College’s School of Graduate Studies features an online Master’s of Business Administration in Organizational and Strategic Communication. This online MBA can be completed in as few as two years and provides mentors to distance learners.

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The School of Graduate Studies at Messiah College provides an online Master’s of Business Administration with a specialization in Organizational and Strategic Communication. Digital Marketing, Management, Social Entrepreneurship, Dietetics, and Strategic Leadership are the other concentrations that accompany this top-shelf online MBA. Messiah’s MBA in Communications is considered average in affordability with a total tuition rate of under $30,000. The Accreditation Council for Business Schools and Programs is the accrediting body for this distance program. One hundred percent of the curriculum for this degree is provided online, so students are not expected to travel to the school’s campus at any time to complete all program requirements. By taking courses within the program’s six and eight-week terms, students who set a quicker pace of course selection may graduate in 24 months. This online MBA in Organizational and Strategic Communication culminates into a capstone experience which allows the student to work with an organization of their choice and a staff member of the business school. Specialization courses included in this degree are Social Media Strategy, Global Strategic Communication, and Organizational Communication: Theory and Practice.

With a campus situated in Mechanicsburg, Pennsylvania, Messiah College features an impressive array of degrees at the bachelor’s, master’s, and doctoral levels just like this online MBA. Messiah got its start as Messiah Bible School and Missionary Training Home when opened in 1909 by the Brethren in Christ Church. Today, 3,331 students are pursuing degrees there, either on campus or online through distance learning. This private, nonprofit college operates under the motto of “Christ Preeminent.” With its Christian foundation, the school stresses ethical leadership and community service as hallmarks to its degrees. The Middle States Commission on Higher Education regionally accredits Messiah College.

Accreditation: ACBSP, Middle States Commission on Higher Education
Affordability Score: Average

#15 Carnegie Mellon University Tepper School of Business – Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania


An online MBA with a Communications emphasis is provided at Carnegie Mellon University’s Tepper School of Business. The Princeton Review and U.S. News & World Report gives this distance degree high marks.

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Carnegie Mellon University’s Tepper School of Business provides an online Master’s of Business Administration with a concentration in Communications. This online hybrid MBA has been designed to give the distance learner the best of both worlds: the convenience of taking classes from the graduate student’s choosing through online assignments to the benefits of face-to-face interactions for networking with short residencies at the Tepper campus throughout the program. The same staff that teaches at Carnegie Mellon are responsible for teaching the same rigorous curriculum based on analytics and leadership that in-class students are exposed to. Access Weekends are a feature of this program. These residencies are offered at various locations six times a year for online MBA distance learners. The residencies take place at the beginning of courses so staff and students can meet one another, and students can begin to build professional relationships with one another that have the potential to exist throughout their careers. Among this very expensive degree’s accolades includes it being named the second-best online MBA by U.S. News & World Report and the fifth top degree in the United States by the Princeton Review.

The Tepper School of Business is accredited by the AACSB while Carnegie Mellon University receives its regional accreditation through the Middle States Commission on Higher Education. The university has been offering higher education since 1900 when it opened its doors as Carnegie Technical School. Today, Carnegie Mellon operates as a private nonprofit university maintaining a student body of 13,869 students pursuing undergraduate graduate, and doctoral programs. Carnegie Mellon features cardinal, grey, black, and white as its official colors and is home of the Tartans. Candidates for this degree should submit an application with $200 fee, essay, resume, transcripts, professional resume, and GMAT/GRE score into the admissions office to start the acceptance process. Managerial Economics, Finance I, Global Economics, Marketing Management, Managing Networks and Organizations, Managing People and Teams, Operations Management, and Ethics and Leadership are core courses included in this high-quality online MBA in Communications.

Accreditation: AACSB, Middle States Commission on Higher Education
Affordability Score: Very Expensive

What will a communications MBA cover?

In its simplest terms, the purpose of a master’s of business administration in communication is to train a business or management professional in the abilities of communicating information as effectively as possible. The ability to communicate is one of the most important foundational elements of business. Without it, an organization will suffer when attempting to sell products in the marketplace, maintain trusting relationships with clients, shareholders, and investors, or cast vision to different departments within a corporation.

With the stumbling blocks of saturated markets, ever-changing technological breakthroughs, and modern business jargon making it more difficult than ever to maintain a focused audience, the need for quality communication is needed more today than ever before. Enter the online communications MBA.

This degree, at its core, consists of a tried-and-true curriculum in business leadership and is designed to prepare a business professional who has already accrued several years of business experience for the next level of leadership. As online MBAs continue to be added to many business schools’ listings of available programs, trusted voices in business continue to champion online programs.

An online MBA in communications will be divided between a bulk of core courses and a lesser amount of concentration courses. For example, Western Kentucky University’s excellent online MBA with a certificate in Communication with Organizations consists of thirty-three credit hours of core requirements and twelve credit hours of certificate coursework.

The core courses within an MBA are designed to teach a student competence in the areas of finance and economics, marketing, accounting, management, and leadership. A student within an MBA will learn how to use analytical thinking to make decisions and solve problems. The communications specialization will focus on the specifics of how to communicate in various avenues of business, how to utilize social media, and how to navigate public relations. Business professionals with a slant toward marketing or PR will thrive within an MBA in communications.

What job can I get with a communications MBA?

If you are serious about a career in business leadership or management and are interested in the areas of public relations, marketing, journalism, or media studies, an MBA in communications might be the right program for you. This degree has been formulated to help business professionals communicate at their best to a spectrum of audiences. Strong communication will always be an essential part of a company’s success.

If a shoe manufacturer that makes the most high-quality loafer on the market, made of the best materials and assembled by the most skilled cobblers in the world, does not do a good job of communicating its brand to the general public, they may go out of business. Put another way, so often in business, your success is not based solely on what you do but how effective you are at communicating internally to employees, department heads, and stakeholders, and externally to partnering companies and the public at large.

Since communication is so crucial to healthy business, there are many positions for professionals with an education in communications. Some of the more popular positions which can be attained after pursuing a degree like an MBA in communications include human relations manager, public relations manager, advertising executive, web content manager, and paralegal.

Each of these roles have as their core a strong ability to communicate information effectively to others. While an HR manager may be in charge of a staff that oversees new company hires, conflict resolution, payroll, and employee support, a PR manager may be in charge of maintaining a corporation’s public persona by setting up press conferences and releasing company statements. Jobs like these can be very rewarding and equally lucrative. A great career starts with a quality education like an online MBA in communications.

What does a marketing communications specialist do?

The world of marketing is an exciting one. Not only do you get to work creatively with a team to figure out ways to help a product sell in the marketplace, you often have the chance to affect culture as a whole. How many jingles do you remember from your childhood that mentions a particular toy or food product? How many commercials do you remember from decades ago because of how funny or endearing the 30-second advertisement was? As many would agree, there is great power in advertising and an exciting career to consider in marketing is a position as a marketing communications specialist.

A marketing communications specialist will often assist a sales and marketing manager by overseeing internal and external communications and designing marketing materials for clients. Much like a public relations specialist, a marketing communications specialist may be responsible for all branding a company uses to tell the story of who it is and what it does.

Specific duties for a marketing communications specialist will include guiding a product from concept to design, and then production and distribution. This role may include maximizing a product or service’s profitability by understanding and capitalizing on market trends while working within the restraints of a company’s budget. A specialist may also bear the burden of performing strategic studies of competing products on the market and researching consumer demographics to maximize marketing potential.

While the role of a marketing communications specialist can be lucrative, it does require some technical know-how. Often the best positions available to communications professionals are those which require higher education, like that of an online MBA with a communications emphasis.