Making the decision to go back to college can be an exciting, yet overwhelming decision, but there is a lot of questions you may have, especially when you have decided to get your MBA online. It’s common to ask yourself certain questions, such as can you afford it and will you be able to keep up with the assignments. But one of the most important questions you may ask is “how do you choose the school with the best MBA program?”
First, it’s important to forget everything you ever thought about online schools and understand that there are many benefits that come with learning online. For instance, you’ll be able to be in class from anywhere you have access to the internet and you can typically study around your schedule. With that being said, here are some things to consider when choosing the best online MBA program.
Carefully review the school’s online course catalog and recommended curriculum for MBA students. Make sure that the curriculum for the online MBA program is the same as the MBA program offered on campus. Research the required courses, assignments, available materials, projects, and exams for each course in the program. Not all business schools offer MBA programs with the concentrations offered in the on-campus programs, so make sure that the courses offered to relate to your specific career goals.
Your Schedule and Learning Style
Most online MBA programs offer different delivery options for their course content and some MBA programs require that you are logged in at different times. Some of the things to consider when searching for the best MBA program for your schedule and learning style may include:
- The way in which the course materials are delivered
- Will you have access to the course content 24 hours a day, 7 days a week?
- How do you interact with professors and classmates?
- Are you required to take a specific number of courses each semester?
- If there are specific class times, will fit into your schedule?
- Are the classes you need only offered once a year?
Good Value for Your Money
Although the majority of online MBA programs are usually less expensive than on-campus programs, the cost can still vary significantly from one school to another. Keep in mind that price doesn’t always mean quality, so it is possible to find an excellent online MBA program that is within your budget. However, in many situations, extremely low-cost MBA programs may be low cost for a reason. An AACSB accredited program typically costs more, but it is also an attractive bonus for potential employers. Take your time and do your research, especially when it comes to the cost. Also, when researching the cost of programs you’re interested in, be sure to look into financial aid and scholarships that are available, keeping in mind that many schools that aren’t accredited don’t qualify for financial aid.
Online MBA Accreditation
The most important thing to consider when searching for the best online MBA programs is whether or not the program is accredited. If the school is accredited, it’s important to look into the organization that is issuing the accreditation. Keep in mind that many employees don’t recognize or accept a degree from a non-accredited school and not all MBA accreditation organizations are the same. The ideal programs are those that are accredited by EQUIS, AACSB, or AMBA. These organizations differ from regional or digital accreditation organizations because they focus specifically on a business curriculum.
When researching for online MBA programs it’s important that you not make the mistake of applying to programs simply because you’ve heard the name. Make a list of what you expect to get out of an online MBA program, what courses are important to you, and what accreditations you will need to succeed after earning your degree. Knowing your priorities will help you have a better focus on what you are looking for in an online program.