For many students, the benefits of earning an MBA far outweigh the costs – that is, until they consider the complications of quitting their jobs to go back to school full-time. Enter the Online MBA, which alleviates many of these complications. Today, Graduateprograms.com is here to discuss the pros of Online Business School.
If one side of a scale represented the benefits of a Masters of Business Administration and the other the disadvantages, the benefit side would certainly hold much more weight. The competitive edge is key for those aiming for a more prestigious title and higher pay in the corporate realm, an aspiring founder navigating the start-up world, or even an artist or writer with an entrepreneurial spirit. A strong business sense is never wasted in life.
Today, the pursuit of an MBA is more accommodating than ever. The old constraints of distance and time are removed thanks to the increase in online MBA options. These aren’t limited to online-only schools, either. Great universities like Indiana University–Bloomington, Arizona State University, and Syracuse University offer online MBA degrees; the flexibility allows students to continue working full-time. In addition, the remote access to an online MBA allows students to save big on travel and housing costs.
Of course, there are other important factors to consider, like program tracks and specializations, how the school name appeals to those who hire in the field, and if the requirements are manageable (some online programs, for example, still require a handful of in-person commitments; others, like Indiana University do not). Application and tuition requirements also vary. Some programs require a minimum of two years of study toward the degree, while others allow for a quicker pace. Also, there is not just one accreditation for all of these online MBAs; students should look into the type of accreditation for each program. Some accreditation requirements are stricter, and that’s a good thing.
Online MBA students should understand that there are some downsides to remote higher education. Networking with faculty and other students will be more difficult, because day-to-day interactions are not in-person. However, because networking is a critical aspect of a graduate degree in business, online MBA students should work hard at attending open houses, mixers, and on-campus events whenever possible.
Because face-to-face contact is less with an online MBA, technology is an important variable to consider. Remember, remote students rely on efficient, accessible and easy-to-use technology to complete coursework. If the program’s online course management system stops working one weekend, it could put students far behind with assignments.
Not every online MBA program offers the same breadth of focus when compared to traditional MBA degrees. So students may want to consider a program with more variety when making a decision. Rutgers University, for example, has an impressive list of over one dozen.
Let’s take a look at Indiana University–Bloomington, often the top ranked online MBA, to get an idea of what the best has to offer.
–The program admits both domestic and international students, and accepts applications twice a year.
–Students can complete a dual degree, furthering both depth and breadth, with 12 extra hours of work.
–Students who want to meet faculty and other students can attend a welcome week.
–The program offers 60 courses, with room for electives because only a portion of the courses are required; students can tailor their experiences to their needs.
–A sample of the courses offered: advertising and promotion management, law for global business, corporate entrepreneurship and innovation, marketing in the era of digital technology. (And for those who want to go global, there are programs in India and China.)
The days of stacking in-person programs above online degrees are over. Students can take the same courses, with the same faculty, to earn the same degree upon graduation from the top universities in the country–all without having to uproot life commitments.
Navigating the path to business school can be made just a bit easier by visiting graduateprograms.com to read and consider peer rankings and reviews. Because if there’s anyone who knows why to go to a particular b-school, it’s your peers.