Earning your Master of Business Administration (MBA) is all-but-essential if you plan on ascending to a leadership position in today's competitive business world. Specifically designed for teaching management skills and business principles, an MBA degree also opens up networking possibilities and exposes students to job opportunities they wouldn't necessarily experience without participating in a graduate-level business program.1
And, of course, there is the matter of pay. People with MBAs earn a median salary of $115,000, which is 75% more than those with just a bachelor's degree. If you're going into certain fields—consulting, technology or finance, to name a few—you can potentially double your salary after graduation.2
These are just a few of the compelling reasons to consider investing in an online MBA, but any savvy business professional probably has the next question already in their mind: How much does an online MBA cost? In this article, we’ll dive deeper into how this graduate business program can further your career, as well as how much you'll pay, on average, to get an online MBA.
The Benefits of Earning Your Degree Online
Thankfully, with the evolution of technology and remote learning over the past couple of years, we no longer only have one way that people can earn their MBA degree. You can choose between completing your program on campus, in a hybrid scenario, or entirely online. Before we dive into the online MBA costs, let’s first analyze the specific benefits of getting an MBA degree online, as opposed to attending a traditional brick and mortar school.
- You won't have to relocate. A lot of undergraduates seek admission to MBA programs as soon as they graduate from college. Others choose to build experience and go back to earn an advanced business degree after joining the workforce. For the latter group, online coursework has an obvious advantage: it allows you to stay in the place where you already live and work while you get the credentials you need to advance your career.
- You can fit coursework in around your work schedule. If you’re concerned about disrupting your current position, know that a majority of grad students work while getting their degrees.3 Since you can complete online coursework at your own pace and on your own time, you’ll be able to maintain or adjust your schedule however you see fit.
- Your employer might be willing to pay for it. According to GradSchoolHub, it's common for employers to reimburse their employees between $3,000 and $5,000 for job-related courses that will lead to a degree or certificate.4 The amounts may vary, but any contribution is helpful and can be combined with other forms of tuition and final assistance. Do keep in mind that employers don't always reimburse employees for altruistic reasons. While they might care about your professional development, they’re more likely to pay for at least some of what the online MBA costs if the skills you'll acquire can help their business to function more efficiently.
- You won't need to pay for child care. If you physically attend classes, you might need to hire someone to take care of your children while you’re gone. An online MBA can spare you that expense because you can be at home for all of your classes.
- The value of the degree isn't diminished when you get it online. Despite the prevalence of online degree programs from top-notch institutions of higher education, a lot of people continue to believe that there's a stigma attached to earning your degree online. The truth is, career prospects do depend on the quality of the education you receive (i.e., the reputation of the school you attend), but it doesn't matter whether you attend a brick and mortar university or do your coursework online.
How Much Will I Spend on an Online MBA?
It’s hard to pinpoint an exact range for how much an online MBA costs since so much depends on your location, university, the number of hours required and your access to books and technology. On average, though, a two-year graduate degree costs $38,628. As you ascend the ranks of nationally-recognized schools, you may pay up to $200,000 or more for the privilege of attending an elite school with a stellar reputation.5
Compared to earning your degree in person, there are some costs that fluctuate for online programs and could potentially save you money in the long run. When you pursue a degree online, you won't have to pay the additional costs of housing, keeping a vehicle on campus or activity fees. You’ll mainly be paying for the tuition hours you're required to take in order to graduate, in addition to the price of textbooks and technology fees. Thus, an online MBA would theoretically cost less than a degree from a residential program.
However, many MBA programs charge extra tuition for your convenience of being able to take classes online—an average of 10 percent more—so be sure to factor that in when you decide how you’re going to earn your degree.6 Full-time students should also consider the income that will be lost during the course of the program as part of their total cost as well (knowing that the cost is an investment in yourself that will pay out over time).
Where to Find the Best Online MBA Program
Strictly speaking, there is no such thing as "the best online MBA program"; different programs offer unique experiences that will benefit some students more than others. However, there are some general things to keep in mind when searching for a program to make sure you find the one that works best for you.
- Does it offer ample opportunities for networking? Schools that are committed to networking resources, facilitate internships for students and offer capstone courses in a practical business environment are the best bet for making connections with mentors, alumni and business leaders.
- Is it easy to apply? Usually the application process is fairly straightforward. Most schools, like Yeshiva University, outline exactly what you need to do to apply and by when. YU also allows students to start their program during the fall, spring and summer semesters, giving you an opportunity to begin your coursework as soon as possible.
- Does it have transparent tuition costs? The programs that you're considering ought to clearly detail how much their online MBA costs. Almost all universities will have a Tuition and/or Financial Aid page to provide a full breakdown by semester or credit hour. For example, YU Sy Syms posts their tuition costs upfront—you'll pay $1,179 per credit hour for the 42 required degree hours, so you can calculate your total amount paid throughout the length of the program.
- Is it fully accredited and well-regarded? Not every school needs to be Ivy League, but accreditations or rankings will demonstrate their commitment to excellence. The Sy Syms School of Business, for example, is accredited by the Association to Advance Collegiate Schools of Business International (AACSB), meaning that it is one of the best business schools in the world.
It’s the Right Time to Invest in Your Future
The longer you put off applying for and enrolling in an online MBA program, the further you’ll be from realizing your professional goals. By establishing a strong foundation of practical business knowledge now, you’ll move forward with the essential skills and professional equity that employers require for senior-level positions.
Make the most of your educational investment with a degree built in the center of start-ups, tech, finance and more. Yeshiva University's Sy Syms School of Business offers an online MBA that is both affordable and highly-ranked; as the #28 Best College for Business in New York and one of the 5 percent of business schools worldwide that are AACSB-accredited, Sy Syms will help you achieve all that you’ve envisioned for yourself. Reach out to an Admissions Advisor to get started.
- Retrieved on July 19, 2021, from, hbr.org/2020/12/is-an-mba-degree-really-worth-it
- Retrieved on July 19, 2021, from, gmac.com/market-intelligence-and-research/market-research/corporate-recruiters-survey/
- Retrieved on July 19, 2021, from, learnhowtobecome.org/career-resource-center/companies-paying-grad-school/
- Retrieved on July 19, 2021, from, gradschoolhub.com/faqs/will-employers-pay-for-graduate-school/
- Retrieved on July 19, 2021, from, affordablecollegesonline.org/degrees/mba-programs/online-mba-cost/
- Retrieved on July 19, 2021, from, onlinembatoday.com/faq/are-online-mba-programs-cheaper-than-residential-mba-programs/