Our 2015 list of the Top 50 Online MBA Programs in the US. For an explanation of ranking criteria, click here.
1. Indiana University, Bloomington, Indiana
The Kelley School of Business at Indiana University offers a flexible online MBA program that allows students to customize their experience by selecting 12 credit hours of electives to create a specialized area. Also known as “Kelley Direct Online,” the program also offers the opportunity for students to complete a dual MBA/MS degree with an MS in Business Analytics, Finance, Global Supply Chain Management, Marketing or Strategic Management. Other unique opportunities for students include AGILE—Accelerating Global Immersion Leadership Education, which allows students to gain international business experience while pursuing their online degree.
Online students that choose the AGILE curriculum can expect to travel to places such as Gaborone, Botswana; Sao Paolo, Brazil; Beijing, China; New Delhi, India; Myanmar, and Johannesburg, South Africa. Accredited by AACSB (Association to Advance Collegiate Schools of Business) International, Kelley Direct Online welcomed 206 online MBA students in fall 2015 and the program takes just two years to complete.
2. University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, Chapel Hill, North Carolina
The Kenan-Flagler Business School at University of North Carolina (UNC) Chapel Hill offers a 66-credit-hour online MBA program that allows students to interact with faculty regularly using a face-to-face online platform. Two important components of the program are the MBA@UNC Global Immersions and quarterly three-day immersions. Students are required to attend at least two immersions. Participation in Global Immersions will take students to major business centers around the world such as Singapore, Johannesburg, Istanbul, London, and others.
Online MBA students may select from six concentrations including Corporate Finance, Entrepreneurship, Global Supply Chain Management, Investment Management, Marketing, and Sustainable Enterprise. In addition, students may participate in several other programs to gain additional hands-on business and international experience. Optional programs include Student Teams Achieving Results (STAR), where "students learn by doing as they take on the role of consultants to real companies," the Exchange Program which "allows MBA@UNC students to study at another top-ranked business school in countries across the globe," and Doing Business In (DBI) which "gives students an opportunity to study abroad at an MBA exchange partner school." The online MBA at UNC is AACSB International-accredited.
3. Arizona State University, Tempe, Arizona
The W.P. Carey School of Business at Arizona State University offers an AACSB International- accredited online MBA that requires just one meeting at the beginning of the program. This mandatory orientation session allows students to meet W.P. Carey faculty, staff, students, and teammates. After orientation, coursework for the 36-credit-hour program may be completed entirely online.
The online MBA at W.P. Carey allows students to customize their MBA by declaring an area of emphasis in Finance, International Business, Marketing, or Supply Chain Management. Students also have the option to earn two degrees in less time and at a lower cost. Concurrent online degree options include the MBA/Master of Legal Studies, the MBA/MSE Electrical Engineering, and the MBA/MS Industrial Engineering.
4. University of Texas at Dallas, Dallas, Texas
The Naveen Jindal School of Management at the University of Texas at Dallas offers an online professional MBA (PMBA) that allows students up to 72 months to finish. The AACSB International-accredited program utilizes "streaming audio lectures, video clips, online exams, online submission of assignments, and interactivity for group projects using discussion forums, email, and web conferencing." Another (mostly) online option is the hybrid MBA program, which allows students to complete their degree by attending just five classroom retreats. The remainder of the program may be completed through online coursework and web conferences.
The 53-credit-hour online PMBA and hybrid programs offer 24 hours of electives, with an impressive 15 concentrations. Just a few include Accounting, Information Systems, Innovation and Entrepreneurship, Marketing, Real Estate, and Supply Chain Management. All online MBA students, regardless of concentration, are encouraged to participate in the school's International Study Programs, which "give direct exposure to business in a global context."
5. University of Florida, Gainesville, Florida
The Warrington College of Business at the University of Florida (UF) offers an accelerated online MBA that allows students to complete the program in just 16 months. A two-year option (27 months) is also on the menu as well as a concurrent Outreach Engineering Management (OEM) Master’s (OEM/I1MBA). This "innovative" degree option "reduces the amount of time and coursework required for students to obtain both the MBA and the OEM degree from UF."
Known as the "UF Internet MBA Program," Warrington’s 48-credit-hour online MBA degree program is one of the nation's first fully accredited online programs. The accelerated and two-year options may be completed online, but students must visit the Gainesville campus once per term (once every four months) to take final exams and to deliver final presentations. These visits typically take place on weekends.
All MBA students are encouraged to enroll in UF's MBA Global Immersion Experiences (GIE), which allows students to register for a two-credit course that meets in person and online over the course of the semester and includes a seven to 10-day experience abroad in China, Chile, Dubai and others. The MBA programs at Warrington College of Business are AACSB International-accredited.
6. Temple University, Philadelphia, Pennsylvania
The Fox School of Business at Temple University offers a 48-credit-hour online MBA program called the “Fox OMBA.” Students will use a combination of “cutting-edge social technologies,” HD video presentations, and web conferencing technology to engage in course activities in any environment and at their own pace. While coursework is available entirely online, students must attend one week-long residency, which is held at the school’s main campus. Students must also “attend” live weekly classes held through WebEx. This gives students the opportunity to meet classmates and faculty in an environment that allows them to “speak with and see one another.”
Most students complete the AACSB International-accredited Fox OMBA in as little as 20 months, with each student spending approximately 10-20 hours each week on coursework.
7. Pennsylvania State University, State College, Pennsylvania
Pennsylvania State World Campus is home to Penn State Online. The division offers a competitive online MBA program designed for professionals with work experience in areas ranging from business and health care to technology. Open to individuals with a business or non-business undergraduate degree, coursework for the 48-credit-hour intercollegiate MBA program (iMBA) may be completed entirely online, with just two mandatory residency experiences. One residency consists of a week of onsite study at a prominent U.S. firm. The other, a team business simulation, takes place on campus in State College, PA.
Online iMBA students can expect to meet during terms three and eight. Otherwise, coursework and communication with instructors and students will take place via bulletin boards, email, listservs, chat, and web conferencing. The online iMBA at Penn State is AACSB-International accredited.
8. University of Wisconsin (Consortium), Eau Claire, La Crosse, Oshkosh, Parkside, Wisconsin
The University of Wisconsin Consortium MBA program is offered entirely online. The program features “content-integrated, theme-based modules rather than traditional stand-alone courses.” The 30-credit-hour program is designed for working professionals looking to advance in their respective career fields. The online format allows students to continue working while completing their program, which typically takes two to three years, once foundation requirements have been met.
In addition to completing a mandatory Leadership “mini-module,” which occurs concurrently with “Developing New Products and Services,” Consortium MBA students may choose 13 credits of electives relevant to their career goals. Electives are offered in the areas of Accounting & Finance, Healthcare, Information Technology, Management, and Marketing. Students also have the option to earn a 13-credit online certificate that can be applied towards the schools MBA program course prerequisites. The University of Wisconsin (Consortium) MBA is AACSB International-accredited.
9. Northeastern University, Boston, Massachusetts
The D'Amore-McKim School of Business at Northeastern University offers an online MBA with optional residencies at the schools domestic campus locations and international locations such as China, Russia, and Greece. The 50-credit-hour program may be completed in 24 to 27 months and it offers eight specialization options including Finance, Healthcare Management, High Technology Management, Innovation Entrepreneurship, International Management, Marketing, Supply Chain Management, and Sustainability
D'Amore-McKim online MBA students also have the option to earn a Dual Masters in Finance/MBA by taking "as few as four to seven additional finance electives." Both online programs utilize virtual class discussions, discussion board collaboration, team projects, and individual assignments for a well-rounded academic experience. The online MBA programs at D’Amore-Mckim School of Business are AACSB International-accredited.
10. University of Nebraska, Lincoln, Nebraska
The College of Business at the University of Nebraska-Lincoln offers a 48-credit-hour online MBA. Although the program is offered entirely online, students may visit the campus at any time. The program includes 10 core classes (30 hours), nine hours of breadth electives, and nine hours of electives. Specialization options include Business Analytics, Finance and Marketing, International Business, and Supply Chain Management.
Students may begin their studies in January, March, May, August or October of each year. The average completion time for the online MBA is three years, but it is possible to complete it in 1.5 years. However, students are allowed up to 10 years to complete this AACSB International-accredited program.