A Master of Business Administration degree, or MBA, is a great investment for people in certain careers. It offers marketable skills that employers love to see on a resume and boosts your long term earning potential as well. If you are looking to advance to upper level positions in analysis, administration, or operations, an MBA is an important stepping stone.
But depending on your life circumstances, it can be challenging to put work and family aside to attend an MBA program full time. Luckily, in our exciting digital age, you can earn an MBA from a brand-name school anywhere in the world through the power of the internet.
There are several great reasons to consider an online MBA over a traditional program. Let’s explore them.
With an online degree, geography doesn’t matter. You can apply to the schools that inspire you, not just the ones you can reasonably commute to. That includes well known private universities like Johns Hopkins, Carnegie Mellon, and Pepperdine. Many excellent state colleges offer an online MBA as well. Internationally, you can choose among schools in London, Cyprus, Milan, Spain, and plenty of other locations.
Earning an online MBA means it doesn’t matter where the physical school is located, but you may find that you save money by choosing one that’s in your state. It’s all part of the greater choice offered by online programs – do you prefer to put more focus on affordability or name recognition?
Many online MBA programs are designed for working adults and let you control the pace at which you complete them. That makes a huge difference if you plan to keep your current job while you study or have significant childcare obligations. A flexible schedule can theoretically make the difference between pursuing that MBA or not.
A traditional, full time MBA program generally takes two years to complete, though there are accelerated programs for those who want them. Online, however, you’re looking at more like 4-6 years of study. Much of the pacing is controlled by you, though, so it depends on how many hours you have to commit to studying.
Earning your MBA is not cheap. The average cost of an online program is north of $25,000! However, it is still less expensive than earning that degree in person, especially if you’d need campus housing. Avoiding the need for hard copy text books also saves a bundle.
But when we talk about choice and flexibility, cost is an included factor. There are actually a few reputable tuition-free online MBA programs that can be completed without the need for a student loan. These programs charge only for the necessary exams, which run from $2,500 – $5,000 over the course of the degree. Other accredited schools offer low tuition.
Don’t forget that you can apply for scholarships or financial aid with an online degree, just as you would at the physical school.
Advance Even As You Study
Let’s face it, the only constant in life is change. We are most successful when we can react nimbly to new opportunities. When you are engaged in a traditional MBA program, it takes precedence over everything else. An online program allows you to keep working, which means you can also keep moving up the ladder as you study. Your employer may be willing to promote you because they know that you will soon have that coveted degree.
Another impossible change in the midst of a traditional MBA program is moving. But with an online degree, you can start it in one city and finish it in another. Anywhere that has internet access can be school. This opens up possibilities for both you and your spouse, whose own life goals could benefit from the flexibility.
If you are considering an online MBA but worry that it won’t be considered legitimate, don’t! Online degrees have been gaining acceptance over the years. They are generally thought to be as good as the school they come from, regardless of how you received the instruction.
One important caveat is to make sure that the school you choose is properly accredited. This makes the difference between a legitimate and a worthless MBA degree. Look for colleges with accreditation from the Association to Advance Collegiate Schools of Business (AACSB) or the Accreditation Council for Business Schools and Programs (ACBSP). These important distinctions mean that the school follows accepted educational standards.
That aside, there’s almost nothing to stop you from pursuing your MBA and taking the business world by storm!