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Online MBA

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An online MBA program is an academic degree that can be earned either partly or entirely online, as opposed to attending a brick-and-mortar college/university.


Online MBA programs continue to evolve technologically. Programs can now offer alternative forms of communication for students, including features such as chatting, live-streaming, online forums and study groups.[1][2]

Program types[edit]

There are multiple options for people trying to decide on an online MBA program. Cost, time, the choice between fully or partly online, accreditation, and other features are factors when making a decision.[3][1]

Online degrees can be earned in less time than a traditional degree.[4]

Programs typically offer a combination of synchronous live classes and asynchronous recorded lectures.[5] Students complete coursework at their own pace, but there are often set due dates for assignments. Some of the different types of online programs are listed below.[6][7]

  • Part-time online: program takes 2-3 years to complete
  • Full-time online: program takes 1-2 years to complete
  • Accelerated online: program lasts 12-18 months
  • Hybrid: program combines online courses with on-campus classes and can be completed in 3-5 years
  • Executive online: program designed for mid- to senior-level managers with at least 5 years of business experience and can be completed in 2 years

Online degree accreditation[edit]

Accreditation is the practice of a third party designating that a program or school meets certain standards. Accreditation can be national or regional.[8]

One criteria for online degree students to research is whether a program has both institutional and programmatic accreditation. Institutional accreditation applies to the entire university, while programmatic or “specialized” accreditation focuses on particular degrees, departments or schools, which includes those offered as online programs. Online degree programs typically go through the same accreditation process as on-campus programs.[8]

Typical accreditation sources for online MBA degree programs include:

  • AACSB Accreditation: The Association to Advance Collegiate Schools of Business. This non-governmental agency only admits 30% of U.S. business schools. Some employer tuition plans will only pay for AACSB-accredited courses. Students may lose financial aid eligibility if they choose a non-accredited program.[7]
  • Accreditation Council for Collegiate Business Schools & Programs[9]
  • Distance Education Accrediting Commission

The Council for Higher Education Accreditation (CHEA) offers an online database where you can check to see if a graduate program is accredited.[10]


  1. 1.0 1.1 "Online MBAs: Going digital". The Economist. Retrieved 2018-07-24.
  2. Adams, Susan. "The Best Online MBA Programs". Forbes. Retrieved 2018-07-31.
  3. Quants, Poets and. "Is Getting An Online MBA Worth It?". Forbes. Retrieved 2018-07-24.
  4. "5 benefits of an online MBA". SmartBrief. 2018-08-07. Retrieved 2018-08-16.
  5. DiscoverBusiness.us. "MBA Programs Guide and Resources". Retrieved 2018-07-24.
  6. "Hybrid MBA vs Online MBA: When To Pay More for Face Time". www.geteducated.com. Retrieved 2018-07-16.
  7. 7.0 7.1 "Everything You Need to Know About Online MBA Programs | All Business Schools". All Business Schools. Retrieved 2018-07-16.
  8. 8.0 8.1 "What Is an Accredited Degree?". Retrieved 2018-07-24.
  9. "What are the differences between the business accreditation agencies: AACSB, ACBSP and IACBE?". Business Management Degrees. Retrieved 2018-07-16.
  10. "Accredited Online Colleges of 2018 | OEDb.org". OEDB.org. Retrieved 2018-07-24.

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