Top Accredited Online Business Degree Programs

What Can You Do with a Business Degree?

Online business degree programs explore how organizations succeed. You may learn how to manage a business, lead employees, and even launch a company from the ground floor.

Career paths in this field span areas like accounting, management, and employee training. Some business programs even prepare you for a specific industry. For example, you could study real estate or health services management.

Studying business may also be ideal if you’re curious about how commerce shapes the world. From mom-and-pop shops to Fortune 500 corporations, businesses are the building blocks of the economy. No matter what role you hope to play, your business courses could prepare you to make an impact. 

DBA's and PhD's in BusinessMasters Degrees in BusinessBachelors Degrees in Business
Doctor of Business Administration (D.B.A.) - EntrepreneurshipM.B.A. with an Emphasis in Sports BusinessBachelor of Science in Business Administration (BSBA) - International Business
The DBA deepens business knowledge for current professionals. The entrepreneurship track highlights the risks and rewards of new ventures. Study topics like raising capital and launching a company from scratch.The MBA covers issues and trends in business, with a global focus. The Sports Business track applies key business concepts to the sports industry. For example, study sports marketing and analytics.This program focuses on the basics of running a business. The concentration in International Business lets you explore the ins and outs of global enterprise. And, you’ll take general education courses, too.
Courses you could take include:
  • B2B Marketing
  • Innovation Management
  • Finance
Courses you could take include:
  • Economics
  • Finance Principles
  • Sports Business Revenue
Courses you could take include:
  • International Business Practices
  • Accounting I
  • Introduction to Marketing
Program Accreditation: Program Accreditation: This program is accredited by the Accreditation Council for Business Schools and Programs (ACBSP).Program Accreditation: This program does not hold programmatic accreditation.Program Accreditation: This program is accredited by the Accreditation Council for Business Schools and Programs (ACBSP). 

Online Business Degree Programs

A typical business program teaches students the strategies for running a healthy organization. That said, online business programs address many corners of industry and areas of expertise. You can study business at the undergraduate level, all the way up to the doctoral level! 

Business Bachelor’s Degree Programs

At the Bachelor’s level, business programs focus on foundational knowledge. You may start with general courses, like mathematics and the principles of economics. You’ll also take core business courses like:

  • Managerial Accounting
  • Financial Management
  • Business Information Systems
  • Supply Chain Management
  • Business Law and Ethics
  • Human Capital

Many programs also offer the chance to take a concentration. For instance, you could focus on international business, marketing, or entrepreneurship.

Most Bachelor’s in business programs fall into one of three categories:

  • Bachelor of Business Administration (BBA). This program tends to cover a general overview of business. You’ll study subjects like economics, accounting, and marketing.
  • Bachelor of Science in Business Administration (BSBA). This program may focus on STEM, alongside business topics. Expect higher-level math courses and a more analytical approach.
  • Bachelor of Arts in Business Administration (BABA). This program may include liberal arts courses, along with business courses. For instance, you could study history, English, and communications.

Master’s Degrees in Business, Including MBA Programs

Master's programs build on past learning and feature more advanced business topics. Programs may be more analytical, with courses like statistics and mathematical modeling. You could even focus on an industry you love, like sports business.

Generally, business students choose from two kinds of Master’s programs:

  • Master of Business Administration (MBA). MBA programs tend to take a big picture approach to business. Students take courses spanning areas like management, organizational behavior, and finance. You could also choose a concentration. However, MBA programs strive to give a broad overview of business leadership. And, take note: this path may ask students to have work experience.
  • Master of Science in Business (M.S.). M.S. in Business programs usually drill down on one area of expertise. For instance, you could study business analytics or supply chain management in depth. Another key difference is that you may not need as much work experience to pursue an M.S., compared to an MBA.

Many Master’s in Business programs offer specializations, like:

International Business. This concentration covers business across different countries and cultures. You could study international trade and business challenges that span nations.
Entrepreneurship. Have you always dreamed of launching your own business? This concentration may cover planning and funding a business concept. You may learn to lead a team to success or even invest in a new venture.
General Business. A general business concentration gives a broad overview of the field. You may engage in business research, study ethics, and hone your management strategies.

Doctoral Business Programs

At the doctoral level, students further delve into business theory and practice. Programs feature advanced courses like econometrics and graduate-level statistics. And, business research may play a big role. Typically, you must research and write a dissertation to earn a doctorate in business.

If you want to study business at the doctoral level, you’ll generally find two types of program:

  • Doctor of Business Administration (DBA). DBA programs are usually aimed at business practitioners. In other words, you’ll study business theory you could apply within organizations. If your goal is solving business problems using existing theories, earning a DBA may be ideal.
  • PhD in Business. PhD programs focus on original research in business. Instead of applying existing theories, students may create and test new ones. So, PhD in Business programs may be ideal for those interested in research and teaching.

How Long Does It Take to Earn an Online Business Degree?

Earning a Bachelor’s degree in business takes around four years of full-time study. Earning an MBA takes about two years, but accelerated programs may take only one year. Finally, doctoral programs vary in length. For example, a DBA may take between three and five years to earn.

Online Business Degree Programs That Could be Completed in 16 Months or Fewer

School# of Credits RequiredStart DatesMinimum Months to Complete
University of the Southwest36Courses start every eight weeks12
Southern Oregon University45Multiple16
Regent University42Multiple16

How Much Does it Cost to Major in Business?

As of 2016, business majors paid median in-state public tuition of $6,577. Median tuition for out-of-state private colleges was much higher, at $29,650. Of course, most schools fall somewhere in the middle. Compare the following MBA programs:

School# of CreditsCost Per CreditTotal Tuition Cost
Lasell College36$600$21,600
Northcentral University30$3,600 (per course)$31,960
Purdue Global University60 to 76$485$29,100 to $36,860

Top Business Schools for Earning an Online Degree

Last check, there were 3,488 schools that offer business degree programs. From those schools there were 800,019 business degrees awarded to students. The majority (56.4%!) of these programs were Bachelor’s degrees.

School2016 Total Grads/Degrees Awarded2017/18 Tuition (Out of State Unless **)
University of Phoenix - Arizona15,9509,608**
Ashford University5,223$11,248**
Broward College5,077$4,476
Western Governors University4,973$6,070**
University of Maryland - University College4,828$33,606
American College of Financial Services4,739Not listed
Southern New Hampshire University4,220$36,744
The University of Texas at Austin4,097$36,744
DeVry University - Illinois4,058$17,316**
Florida International University 4,025$18,954

*Estimated for full-time, beginning undergraduate students

Why Choose Accredited Online Business Schools?

Accreditation can ensure your business program upholds the standards that matter to you. Accrediting organizations check programs for things like teaching excellence and student outcomes. In other words, think of accreditation as a sign of quality!

Maintaining accreditation also requires improvement over time. So, accreditation could be a sign that your program keeps up with the business field’s changing needs.

Two organizations that accredit business programs include:
  • The Accreditation Council for Business Schools and Programs (ACBSP): ACBSP accredits undergraduate, Master’s, and doctoral business programs. They base accreditation on seven standards, including faculty focus and curriculum.
  • International Accreditation Council for Business Education (IACBE): IACBE accredits business programs at the undergraduate and graduate levels. Their approach involves measuring program outcomes.

Both ACBSP and IACBE let you search accredited programs on their websites. Education Connection also can help match you to accredited business programs.

Careers with a Business Degree

As of 2016, there were 10.5 million business graduates in the workforce. These included Accountants & Auditors, the role with the largest share of business grads. And, employment for business degree holders is growing. Between 2015 and 2016, this group saw growth of 1.61%.

Does the typical business graduate look like you? For starters, a few more females (50.9%) earned business degrees than males. The average age of an employee with a business degree was 43.6 years old.

Top States for Business Professionals

The table below shows states with the highest employment levels for Financial Managers. This career path often needs a degree in business administration. 

StateEmploymentAnnual Mean Wage
California72,100$154,310
New York40,570$205,500
Illinois37,310$134,370
Texas32,480$151,170
Massachusetts30,610$142,370

Find the Perfect Online Degree For You

What kind of jobs can you get with a business degree?

Business and financial careers may grow 10% from 2016 to 2026. That’s faster than average for all occupations! Here are a few career paths to consider if you plan to earn a business degree. 
 

Administrative Services Managers (i)

Administrative services managers help keep a business running smoothly. They plan, direct, and coordinate supportive services of an organization. Their specific duties can vary from company to company and industry to industry. 

  • Median Salary: $94,020 per year 
  • Job growth through 2026: 10%  (Faster than average)
  • Typical Entry-level education: Bachelor's degree

Advertising, Promotions, and Marketing Managers (ii)

Advertising, Promotions and Marketing Managers create interest among potential buyers of a product or service. They do this for a department, for an entire organization, or on a project basis (referred to as an account).

  • Median Salary: $129,380 per year 
  • Job growth through 2026: 10%  (Faster than average)
  • Typical Entry-level education: Bachelor's degree

Financial Managers (iii)

Financial managers are responsible for the financial health of an organization. They produce financial reports, direct investment activities, and develop strategies and plans for the long-term financial goals of their organization.

  • Median Salary: $125,080 per year 
  • Job growth through 2026: 19%  (Much faster than average)
  • Typical Entry-level education: Bachelor's degree
(i) bls.gov/ooh/management/administrative-services-managers.htm | (ii)bls.gov/ooh/management/advertising-promotions-and-marketing-managers.htm | (iii) bls.gov/ooh/management/financial-managers.htm