Home > Top 25 Online Master’s in Management Programs for 2018

Top 25 Online Master’s in Management Programs for 2018

Earning a bachelor’s degree in a specialized field like engineering, marketing, or finance is an excellent foundation for professional success; however, if you have aspirations to lead a team of engineers, manage a marketing department, or become a chief executive officer (CEO), earning a business management master’s degree online may also be a worthwhile investment. The courses you complete in this type of program teach you the leadership, organization, and business skills needed to succeed in a variety of roles. Additionally, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS), leadership roles in every industry are expected to grow by 6% by the year 2024.

WHAT ARE THE BEST ONLINE MASTER’S IN MANAGEMENT PROGRAMS?

1

Harvard UniversityCambridge, MA

Degree Master of Liberal Arts in Management
Admissions Rate 6%
Default Rate 1%
Retention Rate 98%
Graduation Rate 98%
Online Enrollment 7%

Through its Extension School, Harvard University offers close to 800 online and hybrid courses. Working professionals are attracted to the Extension School because it affords them the flexibility of an online degree, along with the prestige of an Ivy League institution. The online master’s in management degree solidifies student's understandings of management theory and includes topics on digital media, corporate responsibility, and marketing strategy. The curriculum includes 12 courses, and learners must take at least four of them on-campus. Students have the option to take on-campus classes during the week or on the weekend. Learners can take courses in the fall, spring, or summer. Graduates walk with fellow Harvard students at commencement and become members of the Harvard Alumni Association.

2

University of St FrancisJoliet, IL

Degree Master of Science in Management
Admissions Rate 51%
Default Rate 4%
Retention Rate 76%
Graduation Rate 65%
Online Enrollment 43%

The University of St. Francis, founded in 1920, is a Catholic liberal arts institution with campuses in Illinois and New Mexico. The school also has a distance education program that offers more than 120 online courses. St. Francis' online school servers more than 1500 new students each semester. The master of science in management program is designed for business professionals who want to take their career to the next level by learning new skills in communication, critical thinking, and team building. Students can complete all curriculum requirements in 15 months. This includes topics on technology in business and business ethics. Students may begin the online master’s in management program in the fall, spring, or summer. Learners complete coursework at their own pace. Students who wish to continue their studies can apply for USF’s master of science in management to MBA bridge program.

3

Stevens Institute of TechnologyHoboken, NJ

Degree Master of Science in Management
Admissions Rate 44%
Default Rate 4%
Retention Rate 94%
Graduation Rate 82%
Online Enrollment 9%

Established in 1870, Stevens Institute of Technology was the first college in the U.S. to focus completely on mechanical engineering. The institute now offers a variety of programs through its four colleges. The School of Business offers an online master’s in management program, which students can complete remotely in one year. The program helps students develop their problem solving and leadership abilities through a 10-course curriculum. Coursework includes topics on financial decision making and technology and innovation management. Students have the opportunity to enroll in the field consulting program, which provides invaluable workplace experience and a firsthand look at the management operations of a major company. Courses include financial decision making and organization behavior and design.

4

University of ScrantonScranton, PA

Degree Master of Business in Operations Management
Admissions Rate 72%
Default Rate 3%
Retention Rate 88%
Graduation Rate 80%
Online Enrollment 16%

The University of Scranton is a Catholic and Jesuit liberal arts institution located in Scranton, Pennsylvania. The university offers 16 master’s programs and certificates online. The MBA program in operations management teaches students the skills they need to become successful leaders. Course subjects include macro and microeconomics, marketing, and business law. The program requires students to earn at least 36 semester credit hours. The curriculum includes core courses, electives, and a three-credit capstone project. The University of Scranton boasts an alumni network of more than 45,000 members worldwide. Applicants must submit an application, a letter of reference, a statement of intent, a résumé, and all transcripts. Core courses include accounting and management, managerial economics, and organizational behavior.

5

Endicott CollegeBeverly, MA

Degree Master of Education in Organizational Management
Admissions Rate 73%
Default Rate 3%
Retention Rate 86%
Graduation Rate 71%
Online Enrollment 14%

Endicott College was founded in 1939. The school serves more than 5,000 undergraduate and graduate students. The Van Loan School, Endicott’s college for graduate and doctoral studies, offers extensive online degree opportunities. The master of education in organizational management program is designed for professionals looking to advance their careers in social service, education, healthcare, government, or nonprofit organizations. Through the 12-course curriculum, students learn how to effectively lead, organize, and educate in a management role. The online program is offered completely online in an asynchronous format, meaning students complete coursework at their own pace. Most students earn the degree in about 16 months. Learners must earn at least 36 credits. Required courses include marketing and branding organizations, trends in technology, and talent management.

6

Messiah CollegeMechanicsburg, PA

Degree Master of Business Administration
Admissions Rate 79%
Default Rate 2%
Retention Rate 88%
Graduation Rate 77%
Online Enrollment 12%

Messiah College, located in Mechanicsburg, Pennsylvania, is a Christian institution that was founded in 1909. The college offers close to 200 undergraduate, graduate, and certificate programs. Messiah’s master’s in business administration program emphasizes ethical leadership practices and gives students the tools they need to manage business operations. The curriculum includes 36 courses, which students can complete entirely online in about two years. The program offers six concentrations, including social entrepreneurship, strategic leadership, and digital marketing. In order to be considered for this online online master’s in business management program, prospective students must have a minimum 3.0 undergraduate GPA. Applicants who do not have a bachelor’s degree in business must have completed basic courses in accounting, finance, microeconomics, and statistics.

7

University of La VerneLa Verne, CA

Degree Master of Science in Leadership and Management
Admissions Rate 47%
Default Rate 5%
Retention Rate 85%
Graduation Rate 64%
Online Enrollment 10%

The University of La Verne is a private institution located near downtown Los Angeles. The college offers degrees through four schools. La Verne prides itself on its online offerings, which include a master of science in leadership and management program. The degree requires 33 semester hours of coursework, or 36 for students without a bachelor’s degree in a management-related field. Students choose between three concentrations: organizational development, human resource management, and nonprofit management. For their capstone projects, students must research, write, and present a thesis or applied research project. The online master’s in management program is only available to California residents. Applicants should have a minimum GPA of 2.75 in the last 60 credits of undergraduate work, and they must submit two letters of recommendation, a personal statement, and a résumé.

8

Norwich UniversityNorthfield, VT

Degree Master of Business Administration
Admissions Rate 57%
Default Rate 5%
Retention Rate 74%
Graduation Rate 56%
Online Enrollment 42%

Norwich University, founded in 1819, has the distinction of being the first private military college in the United States and the birthplace of the Reserve Officers’ Training Corps program. More than 2,000 cadets and civilians take courses at the school’s Northfield, Vermont, campus, and about 1,200 graduate students are enrolled in Norwich’s online programs. The master of business administration, one of 15 graduate programs that are offered online, can be tailored to fit a variety of interests and career aspirations. Students may choose to earn a general MBA or take one of six concentrations, which include energy management, construction management, and finance. The curriculum includes six, six-credit courses that last 11 weeks. Students must attend a week-long, on-campus residency, which is their final academic requirement before graduation. Learners can begin the program in March, June, September, or December.

9

Concordia University-PortlandPortland, OR

Degree Master in Business Administration in Leadership and Management Concentration
Admissions Rate 51%
Default Rate 5%
Retention Rate 74%
Graduation Rate 48%
Online Enrollment 75%

Concordia University is a private Christian liberal arts university that was founded in 1905. The school’s campus is located in Portland, Oregon. Concordia has one of the best online master’s in business management programs. The MBA program with a concentration in leadership and management prepares students to succeed in leadership roles. Beyond typical MBA topics, this program focuses on transformational leadership, strategic planning, and innovation and growth. The program consists of 38 semester hours, and students typically complete all program requirements in 18-24 months. For students with a more flexible schedule, Concordia offers an on-campus option that meets once per week. Courses last eight weeks, and the program is taught through a cohort format. Learners can begin the program in the fall or spring.

10

Webster UniversitySaint Louis, MO

Degree Masters in Management and Leadership
Admissions Rate 56%
Default Rate 8%
Retention Rate 78%
Graduation Rate 62%
Online Enrollment 25%

Webster University, founded in 1915 as a women’s college, now serves about 17,000 students worldwide and online. The school began offering online programs and courses in 1999. The university now offers more than 30 online graduate programs, as well as bachelor’s and certificate programs. The online master’s in management and leadership degree is designed to prepare students for a wide range of leadership roles. Students with specific career aspirations may pursue one of four concentrations, including cybersecurity and health administration. The curriculum consists of 24 credit hours of core courses and 12 credit hours of electives. Students have the option to earn credits completely online or in a hybrid format.

11

Greenville CollegeGreenville, IL

Degree Master of Science in Management
Admissions Rate 56%
Default Rate 7%
Retention Rate 82%
Graduation Rate 57%
Online Enrollment 19%

Greenville University was founded in 1892 by the Free Methodist Church with the mission of providing a Christ-centered education. The school is located in Greenville, Illinois, and offers online programs through the Briner School of Business, the School of Education, and the College of Professional Studies. The master of science in management program emphasizes team building, human relations, and other leadership skills. Online master’s in management program courses include business analysis and valuation, values based leadership, and legal and ethical environments. The final part of the 11-course curriculum is an applied research project, which demonstrates mastery of management theory. Students can complete the program in two years. Applicants should have a minimum 3.0 GPA within their last 60 hours of undergraduate coursework.

12

Bethel UniversitySaint Paul, MN

Degree Master of Business Administration with concentration in Management
Admissions Rate 95%
Default Rate 3%
Retention Rate 84%
Graduation Rate 74%
Online Enrollment 13%

Bethel University, founded in 1871, is a liberal arts university located in St. Paul, Minnesota. The school offers more than 100 undergraduate and graduate programs through its four colleges and seminary. Bethel offers 32 online programs, including the online master’s in business management. The MBA program with a concentration in management features common MBA courses along with leadership-specifics courses, such as data analysis and decision making, leading change in a changing world, and engaging your potential. Students can complete all program requirements in 18-24 months, and courses can be taken either completely online or in a hybrid format. Classes start every six weeks. Students must earn at least 42 credits to graduate.

13

LeTourneau UniversityLongview, TX

Degree Master of Business Administration in Business Management
Admissions Rate 45%
Default Rate 8%
Retention Rate 69%
Graduation Rate 57%
Online Enrollment 44%

LeTourneau University was founded in 1946 as a technical institute for general infantryman returning from World War II. While the university still offers degrees in engineering and technology, it has grown to include schools devoted to business, education, nursing, arts and sciences, and theology. LeTourneau’s outstanding Business and Technology School is a great place to earn a business management master’s degree online. The MBA program features a general management specialization, which prepares students to lead businesses in an effective and efficient manner or pursue a career as a management consultant. Students can complete the 36-credit MBA curriculum in two years or less. Students are required to attend a 10-day global enterprise trip. LeTourneau prefers applicants who have 3-7 years of work experience.

14

DeSales UniversityCenter Valley, PA

Degree Master of Business Administration in Management Concentration
Admissions Rate 78%
Default Rate 4%
Retention Rate 78%
Graduation Rate 70%
Online Enrollment 14%

DeSales University is a private Catholic university based in Center Valley, Pennsylvania. The school offers an online master’s in business management program. DeSales’ MBA program is the second largest in Pennsylvania and can be completed entirely online. The program does not require an undergraduate degree in business or a related field, and students may choose to take foundation classes for an introduction to business principles. Classic MBA courses such as financial management are supplemented by concentration-specific courses like entrepreneurship and international management. DeSales offers financial aid to graduate students through tuition deferment, work-study, and other programs. Learners must complete seven core courses, three concentration courses, one elective course, and a capstone project.

15

Rivier UniversityNashua, NH

Degree Master of Business Administration-Management
Admissions Rate 57%
Default Rate 4%
Retention Rate 77%
Graduation Rate 43%
Online Enrollment 25%

Rivier University, established in 1933, is a small Catholic University that offers more than 50 associate, bachelor’s, master’s, and doctorate programs. The school is located in Nashua, New Hampshire. Rivier offers 13 distance degrees, including an online master’s in business management program. The MBA management program requires 36 credit hours for completion, and students usually complete the program in about two years. The program is taught asynchronously. Each of the 12 courses takes seven weeks to complete, and students may apply at any time. Rivier University prefers students who have a minimum undergraduate GPA of 3.0, but students below this threshold may still be considered. The core requirement consists of 27 credits and includes courses in accounting, marketing, economics, and operations and quality management.

16

The University of AlabamaTuscaloosa, AL

Degree Master of Arts in Management
Admissions Rate 54%
Default Rate 7%
Retention Rate 86%
Graduation Rate 67%
Online Enrollment 9%

The University of Alabama was founded in 1831 as the first public university in the state. The school is one of the largest universities in the U.S., with more than 38,000 students currently enrolled. The University of Alabama’s extensive online options provide access to the school’s vast resources without students having to step foot on campus. The university offers one of the best master’s in business management online degrees. The MA in management emphasizes leadership in a globalized business arena. Students learn about how to manage global business operations through courses such as advanced import-export strategy, global marketing management, and global business. The program consists of 30 credit hours, and students can apply at any time.

17

Crown CollegeSaint Bonifacius, MN

Degree Master of Business Administration in Non-Profit Management
Admissions Rate 53%
Default Rate 6%
Retention Rate 68%
Graduation Rate 56%
Online Enrollment 44%

Established in 1916, Crown College is a private Christian institution located in Bonifacius, Minnesota. The small college enrolls about 1,300 students. Crown College provides access to more than 40 majors and offers online degrees through its School of Online Studies and Graduate School. Through Crown College’s MBA with a concentration in nonprofit management program, students learn the intricacies of leading social change through topics including nonprofit law, fundraising and philanthropy, and marketing for nonprofits. Students graduate with an understanding of how to address serious global issues in an organized and Christian manner. Students usually complete the program in two and a half years. The curriculum consists of 14, seven-week courses.

18

Minot State UniversityMinot, ND

Degree Master of Science in Management
Admissions Rate 57%
Default Rate 5%
Retention Rate 75%
Graduation Rate 43%
Online Enrollment 31%

Minot State University was established in 1913 and is the third largest university in North Dakota. The school offers more than 60 undergraduate and graduate programs. The school has a student-to-faculty ratio of 14:1. Minot State has offered online programs for 18 years, and learners can choose from 14 degree and certificate programs. The master of science in management program can be completed on campus or online with nine to eighteen months of study, making it one of the fastest options for completing an online master’s in business management. The master of science in management program is research oriented, and research assistantships are available through the School of Business.

19

King UniversityBristol, TN

Degree Master of Business Administration
Admissions Rate 44%
Default Rate 8%
Retention Rate 73%
Graduation Rate 45%
Online Enrollment 35%

King University is a private Presbyterian school that has been operating for 150 years. The main campus is located in Bristol, Tennessee. King University offers 14 online programs. The online MBA program is case-based, meaning that much of the curriculum is taught through the analysis of real world business scenarios. This approach is meant to challenge and develop critical thinking and data analysis skills, making King University one of the best institutions to earn a business management master’s degree online through. Students often work in teams, simultaneously honing their business acumen and communication skills. Learners can choose from 11 specializations and typically finish their coursework in 16 months.

20

Goucher CollegeBaltimore, MD

Degree Master of Arts in Management
Admissions Rate 77%
Default Rate 3%
Retention Rate 82%
Graduation Rate 69%
Online Enrollment 8%

Goucher College is a private liberal arts college in Baltimore, Maryland. Founded in 1885, the small school provides a 10:1 student-to-teacher ratio. Goucher’s graduate programs include an online master’s in management, which is offered through the Welch Center for Graduate and Professional Studies. The master of arts in management program focuses on leadership that helps enhance profits. The 39-credit curriculum includes topics on nonprofit leadership, social entrepreneurship, and fundraising. Students are encouraged to customize their coursework through about 40 elective offerings. Learners have up to five years to complete all degree requirements, but most complete them in two. Students have the opportunity to participate in two, 10-day, on-campus residencies. Courses include principles of project management and leadership and self development.

21

California Baptist UniversityRiverside, CA

Degree Master of Business Administration in General Management
Admissions Rate 65%
Default Rate 8%
Retention Rate 76%
Graduation Rate 60%
Online Enrollment 21%

California Baptist University, established in 1950 by the California Southern Baptist Convention, is a private Christian college based in Southern California. The school offers more than 40 online programs, including an MBA in general management program, which is one of the quickest ways to earn a business management master’s degree online. On average, students complete the curriculum in 12 months. Applicants to the online master’s in management program must have professional work experience and a minimum undergraduate GPA of 2.5. Financial aid is available through grants, scholarships, loans, and financing plans. Students must earn at least 36 credits to graduate. Management specialization courses include foundations of accounting and finance, managerial ethics, and financial management.

22

Dallas Baptist UniversityDallas, TX

Degree Master of Arts in Management
Admissions Rate 42%
Default Rate 8%
Retention Rate 72%
Graduation Rate 58%
Online Enrollment 17%

Dallas Baptist University, a Christian liberal arts institution, incorporates Christian principles and teachings into all of its degrees. The school offers more than 100 undergraduate and graduate offerings. Students can complete the master of arts in management program completely online. The curriculum requires learners to earn at least 36 credits to graduate. Students can choose from concentrations such as conflict resolution management, performance management, and professional sales. Learners can pursue a dual-degree option, earning a second degree in communication, global leadership, or higher education. These flexible, dual-degree programs make Dallas Baptist University’s program one of the best online master’s in business management programs.

23

Azusa Pacific UniversityAzusa, CA

Degree Master of Business Management
Admissions Rate 81%
Default Rate 4%
Retention Rate 88%
Graduation Rate 68%
Online Enrollment 7%

Azusa Pacific University is an evangelical Christian university that offers more than 100 undergraduate and graduate programs. The school operates six satellite campuses as well as a distance education program. The master of business management degree can be completed entirely online or with a combination of on-campus and online courses. Students can study online one semester, and on campus the next. By enrolling in online, afternoon, and evening classes, full-time students can complete the 39-unit curriculum in 12 months. Azusa offers a two-week online orientation prior to each session, allowing new students to familiarize themselves with the online platform. Students without an undergraduate degree in business may apply, but they may be required to complete up to three prerequisite courses. The program requires students to complete one of six concentration, which include entrepreneurship, human resource management, and marketing.

24

Spring Arbor UniversitySpring Arbor, MI

Degree Master of Business Administration in Management
Admissions Rate 69%
Default Rate 6%
Retention Rate 79%
Graduation Rate 52%
Online Enrollment 17%

Spring Arbor University, established in 1873, offers more than 70 undergraduate and graduate programs through 13 campus locations and an online school. The school is a Free Methodist institution and is committed to integrating Christ into all of its liberal arts programs. The school currently offers 10 online bachelor’s and master’s programs, including its online master’s in management. Students can complete the MBA in management program entirely online. The curriculum emphasizes the importance of practical, face-to-face business experience. Students have the opportunity to work as consultants at partner organizations, helping to identify problems and create innovative solutions. Learners may choose to complete a four-day international business summit in New York City as part of the course in international business.

25

The Sage CollegesTroy, NY

Degree Master of Science in Organization Management
Admissions Rate 54%
Default Rate 6%
Retention Rate 78%
Graduation Rate 60%
Online Enrollment 9%

The Sage Colleges were established 101 years ago in Troy, New York. Russell Sage College, the Sage’s undergraduate branch, is an all female liberal arts college. However, Sage’s graduate programs, established in 1949, are coeducational. The School of Management, one of Sage’s three graduate schools, offers a master of science program in organization management that is geared towards future nonprofit, business, and government leaders. The program requires students to complete nine core courses and one elective, making it one of the shortest online master’s in management programs. It is free to apply, and students must submit a college transcript, two recommendations, a career goals essay, and a résumé for consideration.

How to Choose an Online Master’s in Management Program

  • Prospective students should consider a degree program’s length when deciding which school to attend. Some of the best online master’s in business management programs take as little as a year to complete, although the average program requires two years of full-time study.
  • Do you want to focus on business administration, operations, or human resources? Some programs provide concentrations that help students hone their management skills for a specific profession upon graduation.
  • The cost of earning an online master’s in management depends on the length of the program and the cost per credit hour. This can range from as little as $450 per credit hour to $1,500 per credit hour. The average program consists of about 36 credits.
  • Some of the best online master’s in business management programs require one or more courses to be completed on-campus; therefore, if you can only attend classes remotely, you should be sure to carefully check the curriculum guidelines at every school you consider.

Careers for Graduates of Master’s in Management Programs

With a degree as diverse as an online master’s in management, students can pursue work in virtually any industry. Some students who attend one of the best online master’s in business management programs take on leadership roles right out of college, while others build towards management positions in the future. Some of the highest paid professionals in businesses around the world hold a master’s in management.

Job Outlook and Salary for Graduates of Management Master’s Degrees

According to the BLS, the number of job opportunities for graduates of online master’s in management programs is expected to grow by 6% from 2014 to 2024; this is comparable to the average for all occupations in the U.S. and should lead to about 505,400 new jobs. Because management roles vary, your expected salary depends on your specific career path, with top executives earning the highest amount. The size and success of an organization also impact your salary, with certain industries paying less than others. As an example, educational management may not pay as highly as consumer goods or financial planning.

Employment Growth for Management
Employment, 2014 Projected Employment, 2024
9,157,500 9,662,900

Salary Growth By Experience For Graduates Of Management Master’s Programs

In most cases, the more experience a worker has in a particular field, the more money they can expect to make; this is the case for management positions across all industries. Earning a business management master’s degree online helps increase your earning potential after graduation and leads to higher salaries at all points in your career. Many management professionals see their salaries double over the course of a 20-year career.


To determine the best online Master’s in Management programs, we looked at the most important factors prospective students, mainly common predictors of future success and a school’s commitment to online programs. This boils down to admissions rate, student loan default rate, retention rate, graduation rate, and the percent of students enrolled in online classes. All data points are taken from information provided by colleges and universities to the National Center for Education Statistics.

Each factor is weighted evenly in order to give an objective view and determine the best online Master’s in Management programs. To calculate our rankings, we looked at a school’s ranking when organized by a single factor, and then averaged each category’s ranking to find an overall score: Admissions Rate (20%) + Default Rate (20%) + Retention Rate (20%) + Graduation Rate (20%) + Percent of Students Enrolled in Online Classes (20%) = Final score.