Best Online Business Administration Degrees

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Best Online Business Administration

Online Business Admin Programs

Business administration consistently ranks as one of the most popular degree choices.

Colleges and universities across the U.S. conferred over 380,000 bachelor’s degrees in business in 2017, more than any other field of study. The popularity of a business administration degree online stems from the opportunities available after graduation. 

Students gain an understanding of key business concepts and practical skills in communication, organization, and leadership — both valued by companies and organizations. The degree also offers students the chance to pursue special topics and concentrations that can enhance career opportunities.

Students considering earning an online business administration degree explore a wide selection of schools and programs. This guide can help you find the best school for your future career, with rankings and information on top business schools. Explore the career opportunities available to graduates of a bachelor’s in business administration program, including career growth and earning potential. Also learn about degree requirements, common courses, concentrations, and scholarship opportunities. 

Your education represents a commitment of time, money, and resources. Use the information on this page to choose the best business administration degree for your needs.

Top 10 Best Online Business Administration Degrees

Rank School Location
1 Trine Online Fort Wayne, IN
2 University of Florida Gainesville, FL
3 Judson University Elgin, IL
4 LeTourneau University Longview, TX
5 Parker University Dallas, TX
6 Maryville University of Saint Louis Saint Louis, MO
7 Kansas State University Manhattan, KS
8 Florida International University Miami, FL
9 Lincoln Christian University Lincoln, IL
10 Saint Mary-of-the-Woods College Saint Mary of the Woods, IN

Online Degree in Business Administration Overview

Your online business administration degree develops skills in critical thinking, communication, and leadership. The U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) projects 7% growth in business and financial occupations between 2018 and 2028, with professionals earning median annual wages of $69,820 in 2019. 

While many elements impact job prospects and earning potential, an online degree in business administration prepares you to enter high-growth careers in accounting, financial analysis, human resources, or market research. 

A concentration in accounting prepares learners to organize financial records, comply with tax regulations, and analyze business financial data. Some accountants specialize within an industry, like healthcare. Often, accountants seek additional education and training to become certified public accountants. In 2019, accountants earned a median annual salary of $71,550.

Financial analysts often work in investment businesses. They may manage individual investment portfolios or large mutual funds. They may also use financial data to provide business or government bond ratings or analyze financial risk. The BLS reports these professionals earned a median annual salary of $85,660 in 2019, with 6% growth projected between 2018 and 2028.

Human resource specialists help organizations manage their human capital. They recruit talented workers, manage benefits, and provide initial employee training and orientation. The BLS projects employment growth of 5% with an annual median salary of $61,920. 

Market research helps organizations understand their clients’ needs. It combines marketing with data analysis and behavioral science. The BLS projects high growth in this field — 20% from 2018 to 2028 — as industries work to increase sales and cut costs. Analysts in this field report an annual median salary of $63,790. 

Each of these careers offers entry-level opportunities following completion of an online degree in business administration. Below, learn more about courses you may take, admission requirements, and opportunities to tailor your education to your career ambitions.

Common Business Administration Courses

Principles of Accounting

All business students need an understanding of basic accounting principles. Understanding the concepts and standard accounting practices helps business leaders analyze financial reports and make informed business decisions. Students learn the documentation required for financial transactions. The course also explains the fiduciary responsibility of business leaders. Typical coursework includes lectures, class discussions, and sample problems. Grades often come from a combination of homework assignments, quizzes, and exams.

Business Law and Ethics

Students explore business entities and the legal advantages and disadvantages of each. Typical topics include contracts, torts, intellectual property, and dispute resolution. An introductory course focuses on U.S. law, but students can also explore global regulatory compliance. In addition to ensuring students gain a solid understanding of legal and ethical principles, the course seeks to build critical thinking skills using empirical and quantitative data while also developing personal and social responsibility. Faculty often use a combination of reading assignments based on theories and concepts of business law and ethics and case studies.

Organizational Leadership

Students consider principles of leadership and leadership styles along with tools and skills that aid in management of diverse teams. The course incorporates principles of psychology to explore what motivates employees and managers, and how leaders can leverage that information to increase workplace morale, productivity, and employee engagement. Leaders must sometimes handle difficult situations, and the course offers strategies for conflict resolution. It also encourages ongoing leadership development and evaluation for a lifetime of learning and improvement. Faculty may incorporate case studies with assigned textbook passages. Students may also benefit from interviewing business leaders. Class discussions help students build their personal leadership philosophy.

Marketing Principles

Business marketing strategies guide how a company communicates with its customers and the public. It incorporates advertising, public relations, brand management, and crisis communication. The introductory course touches on marketing principles related to consumers, target markets, pricing, and distribution, and how each principle must align with an overall marketing strategy. In addition to reading assignments from textbooks, many teachers incorporate discussion of marketing case studies. Students can discuss the real-world problems companies faced and evaluate the outcome while proposing other actions the organization could have taken. The creation of a marketing plan — incorporating product, marketing channels, promotion activities, and pricing — may serve as a capstone project.

Management Information Systems

Businesses track a variety of data related to their organizational goals and objectives. Management information systems help collect, organize, and track that data. This course offers an introduction to information technology management practices, data analysis, and resource planning. Students gain an understanding of the technology and equipment used in information management, with specific training in software applications. The course also explores the processes and policies in place to ensure data is tracked and used appropriately. Finally, the course explains the importance of information security.

Online Business Administration Concentrations

Business encompasses an array of disciplines and specializations. Concentrations allow learners to focus on one aspect of business, such as marketing, human resources, or finance. A concentration includes 12-18 credits in this chosen specialization. These tracks allow students to tailor their online business administration bachelor’s degree to their specific career interests.

A marketing concentration includes courses in advertising, social media marketing, and public relations. Students learn how to craft a comprehensive marketing plan and measure its success. Courses in data analysis may also complement the degree focus.

Finance students consider issues of investment strategy, regulatory compliance, and financial analysis. They learn how to analyze market information to serve their clients. Graduates can take jobs in wealth management, investment banking, and corporate governance.

Some schools also offer an accelerated master of business administration to undergraduate students. This option combines the requirements of the undergraduate degree with graduate-level coursework. Students planning to continue their studies after their bachelor’s degree can save time and money with this program. Schools often set strict academic standards for this option due to the demanding coursework.

Online Business Administration Requirements

Your online bachelor’s degree in business administration requires approximately 120 credits, or about four years of school. About 40 credits focus on business principles and theory, complemented by either a minor or concentration requiring 12-10 additional courses. Schools typically require approximately 45 credits general education such as communication, history, and science to complement your major coursework. Electives balance the curriculum.

Many schools encourage experiential learning through for-credit internships, cooperative learning assignments, or capstone projects. Usually reserved for the final year of your degree, these opportunities allow business students to work under the supervision of a professional mentor in their chosen field.

Most schools require undergraduate applicants to take a college admissions test like the ACT or SAT and hold a high school diploma. If you completed college-level coursework from an accredited college or university, ask about transferring your credits to reduce the number of classes you must take. Some schools require that students apply for admission to the college of business before taking upper-division courses.

Business Administration Scholarships

A&F Business Consultants Scholarships

Based in Chicago, this business supports the education of future business leaders through multiple $1,000 scholarship awards each year. The company accepts applications from college students currently enrolled in a business major and from high school juniors and seniors planning to study a business-related subject in college. The application consists of an essay of 500-1,000 words related to the topic announced each year. Students should include their mailing address and the school they currently attend. A&F accepts applications by email.

Financial Futures Scholarship

Offered by CardRates.com, this scholarship supports students in business, accounting, finance, and related fields with an award of $1,000. Applicants must be pursuing a degree related to the personal finance industry and have a minimum 3.5 GPA. High school seniors and current undergraduate students may apply. The organization requires an essay of 500-900 words as part of the application. In it, students look ahead 10 years and share how they plan to impact the finance industry. Transcripts and essays must be submitted via mail by the annual July deadline.

Jane M. Klausman Women in Business Scholarship

Zonta International offers 32 scholarships each year through district, regional, and international scholarship programs. Awards range from $2,000 for U.S. scholarships and $8,000 for international awards. The program welcomes applications from women pursuing a business degree, including an online business administration degree. Applications begin with local Zonta clubs that select one application to forward to the district committee. Students must have completed at least one year of their degree.

Marketing EDGE Educational Foundation Scholarship Program

Marketing EDGE focuses on data-driven marketing and professional development. Its scholarship program features annual awards of $1,000-$7,000. The scholarship selection criteria includes academic performance and marketing interest demonstrated by coursework, extracurricular activities, and internships. Undergraduate students who have completed a Marketing EDGE program may apply. Applicants should have a minimum 3.0 GPA and enrolled in a marketing-related program.

Best Online Business Administration Degrees

  1. Trine Online
    Location

    Fort Wayne, IN

    Based in Indiana, Trine Online offers a 120-credit, online BS in business administration (BSBA) that gives students a well-rounded education in all areas of business operations. Accredited by the Accreditation Council for Business Schools and Programs, the program includes general education, major, and elective requirements. 

    Students can choose from three majors: management, accounting, or applied management. The online business administration degree also lets students take 12-13 credits of free electives. The degree helps accounting students meet the requirements to sit for the Certified Public Accounting Exam.

    Courses feature a flexible, asynchronous format. All Trine Online students pay the same affordable tuition regardless of residency, and active-duty military receive a steep tuition discount. Students can transfer up to 90 credits toward the degree.

  2. University of Florida
    Location

    Gainesville, FL

    UF offers fully online BA in business administration (BABA) and BS in business administration (BSBA) programs. These 120-credit degrees include seven prerequisite courses in subjects such as accounting and calculus. 

    The BSBA covers business more broadly compared to the BABA, while the BABA allows learners to customize the curriculum through specializations in sociology, general studies, and sports management. BABA students also complete a 150-hour internship to gain hands-on experience in the field. 

    Admission to these online business administration degrees requires prerequisite business courses with a minimum 2.5 GPA (BSBA) or 3.0 GPA (BABA).

  3. Judson University
    Location

    Elgin, IL

    Based in Elgin, Illinois, Judson is an evangelical Christian university that offers an online BA in business administration as a degree-completion program. Students learn from faculty with real-world business experience.

    Earning the business administration degree online allows learners to take classes just once per week while continuing to work. Degree-seekers study topics like economics, marketing analytics, and organizational and corporate finance. Students also pursue one of four 12-credit concentrations: entrepreneurship, marketing management, leadership, or HR management.

    Students develop business proposals and participate in internships to acquire real-world experience. Admission to the BABA requires at least 40 transfer credits with a minimum 2.0 GPA.

  4. LeTourneau University
    Location

    Longview, TX

    Based in Texas, LETU is a Christian institution that offers undergraduate and graduate programs through eight schools. Students can pursue a 120-credit online BBA in general business that develops proficiencies in areas like accounting, finance, quantitative methods, and management.

    Students can use four upper-level business electives to pursue topics aligned with their interests and career goals. All students must also complete 12 credits of theology and vocational courses in keeping with LETU’s Christian values.

    Students take one, five- or 10-week course at a time, which gives learners the flexibility to continue working while earning the degree. More than 90% of LETU’s students receive some form of financial aid, making this an affordable BBA.

  5. Parker University
    Location

    Dallas, TX

    Parker specializes in healthcare education and offers a fully online BBA with a healthcare management concentration. The 120-credit program includes general education, major, concentration, and elective courses. 

    Learners take classes on topics such as accounting, corporate finance, management, and operations and quality management. At the end of their second year, students develop a business plan that demonstrates their problem-solving skills.

    During their third year, students examine healthcare topics, such as evidence-based healthcare, healthcare regulations and procedures, and healthcare information systems. Students culminate the degree with an internship and a management action planning project.

  6. Maryville University of Saint Louis
    Location

    Saint Louis, MO

    Maryville offers a fully online BBA that comprises 120 credits and covers general business topics such as accounting, marketing, and management. A required digital foundations course teaches learners how to operate system software, spreadsheets, and databases.

    Students can tailor the BBA to their interests through concentrations in areas such as healthcare or financial services. In their final year, students complete a business simulation experience that involves cross-functional planning in various operational areas. The BBA holds accreditation from the Accreditation Council for Business Schools and Programs.

    All students pay the same affordable tuition rate regardless of residency. Students can transfer up to 98 credits toward the degree. The online business administration degree offers three start dates per year.

  7. Kansas State University
    Location

    Manhattan, KS

    K-State offers an online BS in business administration (BSBA) that holds accreditation from the Association to Advance Collegiate Schools of Business International. The 120-credit program requires students to complete a 45-credit business administration pre-professions program (BAPP) before declaring the major. 

    BAPP courses cover topics like public speaking, algebra, and business and economic statistics. Students build on BAPP learning with a business core that covers areas such as business operations, finance, and marketing. Students can use 12 credits to pursue a specialization, such as marketing or business analytics. 

    Enrollees must complete at least 30 credits of the BSBA at K-State. All distance learners pay the same tuition rate regardless of residency. Applicants need a minimum 2.5 GPA.

  8. Florida International University
    Location

    Miami, FL

    FIU offers a 120-credit, online BBA that offers majors in finance, human resource management, international business, logistics, and management. Before learners can apply to the business college they must complete prerequisite courses in areas like accounting, calculus, and statistics for business and economics.

    Regardless of their major, all students take business core classes on topics like strategic management, applied business statistics, financial management, and organization and management. They also take professional development courses on speech and writing for business communication and career management. 

    FIU pairs each online student with a success coach to support their studies. Applicants must hold a minimum 2.5 GPA and submit SAT or ACT scores.

  9. Lincoln Christian University
    Location

    Lincoln, IL

    Founded in 1944 as a Bible college, LCU offers a fully online BA in business administration (BABA) that integrates faith and business best practices to train ethical business leaders. The BABA core covers key operational areas such as accounting and finance, operations management, and marketing. 

    A course on business ethics examines how managers can make a positive impact on work conditions, product safety, and advertising initiatives. Students learn how to communicate effectively in diverse business environments, preparing to work in settings such as churches, nonprofit organizations, and corporate offices. 

    Applicants must submit transcripts and ACT, SAT, or CLT scores. The school prefers applicants with a minimum 2.5 GPA.

  10. Saint Mary-of-the-Woods College
    Location

    Saint Mary of the Woods, IN

    SMWC is a private, Catholic liberal arts college based in Indiana. The school offers an online BS in business administration that trains students in key areas of business operations. The degree-completion program requires 51 major credits. 

    The major examines topics such as accounting, management, marketing, and business law. A course focused on financial decision-making teaches students how to secure and allocate financial resources within an organization. During an international business strategy course, seniors conduct case analyses using accounting, finance, management, and marketing skills.

    All online students pay the same affordable tuition rate regardless of residency. Admission to the online business administration degree requires official college transcripts.

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