Online Business Degrees

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Many college students hold full-time jobs, are raising a family, or are adult learners going back to school for a career change, and the student population has become increasingly diverse over the last few decades.

Online Business Degrees

For non-traditional students, the opportunity to earn online business degrees through top-tier colleges can be the perfect option to fit school into their busy lives.

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Do you want to work in a fast-paced corporate setting? Do you have a knack for numbers and enjoy the challenge of leadership? If so, then working towards an online degree in business administration is a great option to build a diverse career out of your innate skill-set.

Business Administration Careers and Salaries

When it comes to business administration, there are countless career paths you can choose to put your degree to work. From owning a small business to accounting or human resource management, there are several ways that you can customize your business administration degree to meet your future goals.

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To give you an idea of some of the options open to you, we put together a list of some common jobs within the field of business administration and their average mid-career salaries according to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics:

Careers Annual Median Salaries
Financial Managers $131,710
HR Managers $126,230
Operations Managers $97,970
Accountants $77,250

From the career and salary information above, you can see that those educated in the field of business administration hold vital roles within the structure of a business – and their pay reflects this.

As you continue your journey into business administration, you may make less or more than the average depending upon your specific career path and skill-set.

Types of Online Business Administration Degrees

Two colleagues having business discussion

Everyone knows that a college education takes time, and online degrees are no different. However, there are many ways that you can shave time off your degree path when choosing to pursue an online business administration degree.

Consider registering for accelerated classes, making use of credit by examination opportunities (CLEP, DSST, or other institution-specific exams), as well as college credit for work (or military experience). Credit policies vary by university, so be sure to check with your prospective college to see if any of these opportunities are available to you.

Select the program that most interests you to jump to that section of the guide:

Regardless of the specialty you select, you will still receive a strong foundation in business administration and related courses.

Online Associate’s Degree in Business Administration

university student taking associates degree in business administration

Earning an associate’s degree in business administration online can be a great option to get your feet wet in the world of business. There are many career paths that can be enhanced with knowledge of business administration, including working in accounts receivable, real estate, and insurance.

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At the associate’s level, you will take a number of courses that give a broad overview of the business world, including:

  • Financial and managerial accounting
  • Speech and public speaking
  • Business writing
  • Principals of marketing
  • Fundamentals of microeconomics and macroeconomics

A solid stepping stone into the world of business, an online associate’s degree in business administration is a great choice for those looking to enter the workforce or start their own business venture.

Online Bachelor’s Degree in Business Administration

HR managers working on project in office

As with most careers, earning a higher-level degree tends to equal more career opportunities and greater salary ranges.

When pursuing an online bachelor’s degree in business administration, you will be able to focus on a concentration specific to your career goals. Additionally, you will gain a more in-depth view of the field of business and have the opportunity to delve deeper into understanding how a successful company is run.

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Choosing to work towards a bachelor’s degree in business administration gives you an edge in the competitive world of business. Not only will you obtain specialized knowledge, but you will also develop the critical thinking and leadership skills necessary to rise to the top of the corporate world.

Online Master’s Degree in Business Administration (MBA)

 young businesswoman working on a computer in an office

When working towards your master’s degree in business administration, you will find that your online degree program focuses on the management and leadership skills needed to succeed in business.

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By building upon your existing undergraduate business studies, you will study the ins and outs of the corporate world by learning from leading experts and professors in the field. A few of the general required courses that you may encounter during your MBA journey include:

  • Strategic marketing and leadership
  • Organizational management and human resources
  • Executive accounting
  • Supply chain management

Although it is not the norm, it is important to note that a few universities may require a brief residency for successful completion of your MBA. With many top universities now offering MBA programs online, the opportunity to hit the ground running in the business world is greater than ever.

Online Doctorate Degree in Business Administration

financial analyst discussing report with colleague

If you envision yourself at the top of a Fortune 500 company or teaching business courses at a reputable university, then taking your business administration education to the doctorate level could be a valid strategic move.

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The high-level courses that you can expect to see at the doctoral level include:

  • Doctoral seminars
  • Statistical research methods and design
  • In-depth courses on global economics
  • Ethical leadership and law
  • Dissertation development

As the pinnacle of your educational career, earning a Ph.D. behind your name may be exactly what you need to open the door to a highly respected career.

Business Administration Career Outlook and Salary Information

two workmates working on paper works

The business world is always changing, and this can be a positive factor for those in business administration. With economic growth and the evolution of technology, new career paths are always developing in which you can put your business skills to the test.

As discussed above, there are a wide variety of jobs available once you have earned your business administration degree. Your career outlook and potential salary will be largely dependent on the amount of education you acquire and the specific industry and career path you pursue.

Regardless, the long-term outlook appears bright for those entering the business world. For example, the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics states that the career of an administration service manager is expected to grow 9% over the next 10 years.

Check out our comprehensive list of the top 40 business careers to compare jobs and salaries in this field.

Is an Online Degree Program Right for Me?

woman working out a plan for her project

If you’ve been considering an online degree program, you are likely wondering about the benefits of online classes – and there are many.

Some of the top reasons students choose to pursue an online degree include:

  • Ability to log in anytime and anywhere
  • Technologically enhanced courses
  • Option to move at a faster pace
  • Lower cost of tuition (in many cases)
  • Career advancement
  • Ability to continue working full-time

With more colleges than ever jumping onboard with online degree programs, now is the perfect time to join the millions of fellow students who are working toward their educational dreams in an online setting.

Comparing Top Business Administration Degree Programs

Once you have determined that the field of business administration is something you want to pursue, it is then time to pick a college that can best suit your needs.

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When it comes to accredited universities offering online degree programs, there are many options. However, by looking at the following factors closely, you can ensure you will be getting the best education possible.


university campus offering online business degrees

Earning a degree at an accredited university is essential in today’s world. There are many “degree mill” schools popping up with the increased popularity of students registering for online courses, and you will want to avoid these at all costs. So, what does accreditation actually mean?

An accredited university is one that has voluntarily gone through the process of having its academic quality and financial resources formally reviewed. When you enroll at an accredited university, you have a much higher chance of knowing that you are working towards a degree that will have a positive reputation once you get into the workforce.

To find out more about regional and national accrediting agencies, you can go to the U.S. Department of Education’s website for detailed information.

Student to Faculty Ratio

Just because you will not be taking classes in person at a brick-and-mortar school doesn’t mean that class size isn’t an important factor.

In fact, having an appropriate student-to-faculty ratio becomes even more essential in online degree programs to stay on track with your studies. When college professors are responsible for large class sizes, it is much more difficult for them to give you the individualized support you need in order to succeed.

In addition to checking out your prospective college’s student-to-faculty ratio, it is also a good idea to take a look at their faculty information. When you are putting the hard work in to earn your business administration degree, you need to ensure that you are being taught by expert faculty. Most colleges have a section on their websites where you can review the academic history and achievements of the professors for your desired program.

Academic Advising and Student Services

operations manager working at computer in office

There is no doubt that studying and coursework are important to succeeding in your degree program, but there is more to it than that. When researching colleges, take time to look at the advising and student services they offer to online students.

These student services set the top colleges apart from the crowd, and may include:

  • Online access to business resources
  • Internship opportunities in various business career paths
  • One-on-one online mentoring programs
  • Online bookstores
  • Free tutoring for current classes

Earning your online business administration degree is an exciting opportunity to jump head first into the fast-paced world of business. Whether you dream of supporting your family with a small business, or you have a passion for the corporate world, there are countless options available to customize a career path to your future goals.

With a strong career outlook and the flexibility of online degree programs, there is no better time than now to take the first step toward your business administration degree.

Ready to start your journey?
Elizabeth Abner
WRITTEN BY Elizabeth Abner

Elizabeth is pursuing a Doctor of Philosophy in Foreign Policy and earned her master's degree in business administration. For her undergraduate studies, she earned a Bachelor of Arts in Business Administration with a concentration in international business. Elizabeth's research is focused on universities offering online degree programs.