Best Online Business Degrees

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Choosing the Best Online Business Degree for Your Future

Online business degree focus on business communication, business principles, accounting, and statistics.

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Whether you’re reaching for success on Wall Street or Main Street, a business degree will help you understand what it takes to get there as well as help build your skills to do it. A business degree is not the only path to business success, but it will prepare you for specific tasks and challenges in a way that other degrees will not.

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For people looking to save money (good instinct for a future business exec!) or retain their flexibility, going online for your business degree might make a lot of sense. Traditionally, going to college has meant trading in years of work experience and earnings for an education, which is usually worth it.

But now, you don’t have to choose between a job and an education—you can do both!

You may not know that online degrees are oftentimes identical to traditional, residential degrees. But it’s true.

Most colleges that are serious about their online programs don’t distinguish between them on the diploma, because their rigorous in-person classes are taught by the same professors who teach online courses.

“Things have changed,” according to a U.S. News & World Report interview with Susan Fontana, a vice president at the global recruiting firm Manpower. Online degrees, she says, are “so much more accepted today.”

Top 10 Best Online Business Degrees

Rank School Location
1 University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill Chapel Hill, NC
2 Indiana University-Bloomington Bloomington, IN
3 Temple University Philadelphia, PA
4 Arizona State University Tempe, AZ
5 University of Florida Gainsville, FL
6 Auburn University Auburn, AL
7 James Madison University Harrisonburg, WI
8 University of Nebraska-Lincoln Lincoln, NE
9 Carnegie Mellon University Pittsburgh, PA
10 Arkansas State University-Jonesboro Jonesboro, AR

What are the best online business degrees?

If you’ve read this far, you’re probably at least considering getting a business degree online. And while that’s a big decision, it’s only the beginning.

Now you have to decide where to apply for this online business degree.

Well, that’s why we put together this list. Taking everything from school reputation, to incoming students’ academic achievements, to cost and financial aid, to the career prospects of graduates, we’ve developed a comprehensive ranking of the best online business degrees.

Our data comes from the National Center for Education Statistics’ IPEDS database, U.S. News & World Report, Payscale, and individual college websites.

Rankings

See our rankings methodology page.

  1. University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill
    Location

    Chapel Hill, NC

    Tuition

    $$$$$

    Overview

    The University of North Carolina – Chapel Hill business school is called Kenan-Flagler. Kenan-Flagler has degree options for all degree levels. For those who wish to gain this highly selective Kenan-Flagler Undergraduate Business Program, they must follow the following rules. All applicants must have at least 1 semester at UNC prior to applying. Admissions suggests that the student applies before their sophomore year. Students will need to have a career exploration plan, and demonstrate leadership skills. Accepted students will complete their junior and senior year courses in the program.

    Features

    Kenan-Flagler’s strong academic program includes their “live learning opportunities”. These opportunities are developed to match the requirements for the individual degree. Students who join these programs can apply their classroom experience to real world exercises in a laboratory environment. Below is a list of the undergraduate-level opportunities for juniors and seniors:

    • STAR program or STAR Global is a 4-month consulting engagement with a local or international client. Unless the client is local, most of the interaction will occur virtually. However, if the client is international, the students may need to visit the international country for two weeks.
    • Up-Your Game Simulation is an email simulation game for students to experience what it is like to be a company’s “rising star”. Tasks include a simulated increase in workload, a special project and an “executive debriefing” in front of a small group of “executives”.
    • Entrepreneurial Consulting program is a simulated consultant group – usually a team of students – working together to solve current, real-world problems for entrepreneurial clients.

    Notables

    Kenan-Flagler Business School at the University of North Carolina – Chapel Hill is known for their high values in excellence, leadership, integrity, community and teamwork. Bloomberg Business Week calls it the #10 school for teaching job placement and facilities and services. US News &World Report says their undergraduate program is the #9 in the country and #5 in public universities. However, one of the most important things about Kenan-Flagler is that you will get an ivy league education at a public school price.

  2. Indiana University-Bloomington
    Location

    Bloomington, IN

    Tuition

    $$$$$

    Overview

    Kelley School of Business at Indiana University – Bloomington was founded in 1920 in Bloomington, Indiana. Today, the entire Kelley Business School ranks #20 as the best business schools and the undergraduate business school ranks #1. Kelley believes that the best teacher is experience because it focuses on the person’s passions and talents. Entering freshman students presented with personal academic, career and faculty advisors to assist them with choosing their official major right before their senior year.

    Features

    To engage student’s passions and talents, Kelley has built three core programs into the first three years of the undergraduate curriculum. The focus is to develop the student’s global rapport in communication, professionalism and computer skills. These programs can occur on the main campus, online or on one of the 100 overseas programs in 37 countries and in 17 languages.

    • Kelley Compass Courses: A series of courses that allows students to shape their personal brand, identify unique strengths, develop leadership skills and hone their own values, beliefs and passions. Students are required to take one class per year over the course of their first three years at Kelley. Kelley Compass 1, 2, and 3.
    • Global Foundations Core (G-Core): A sophomore year group of classes that prepares you for the economic, social, political, legal, cultural and technological influences within a global economy. During this foundational core classes, students do have an opportunity to travel globally to gain experience.
    • Integrative Core (I-Core): A junior year block of four classes that assist students in combining everything that they have learned during their first two years at Kelley. This block is a semester long intensive program that has a 10-day cohort that studies a real-world business case.
    • Other required courses and credits: Students are required to attend special workshops and seminars in Commercial Real Estate, consulting, global sales, investment banking, investment management, retail, technology consulting.

    Notables

    Kelley’s excellent reputation for their students’ core business understanding, global economic perspective and confidence gains students the interaction with over 700 global companies throughout their tenure at the school through school activities, special seminars, recruiting events and student organizations.

  3. Temple University
    Location

    Philadelphia, PA

    Tuition

    $$$$$

    Overview

    Founded in 1918, the Fox Business School at Temple University is the largest, comprehensive business school within greater Philadelphia, Pennsylvania and one of the largest in the United States. The business school has over 7,500 students and over 190 faculty. While it maintains high rankings by Forbes, Princeton Review and US News & World Report, the school remains known for its high-quality education with campus and class options that work for the modern student schedule and budget.

    Features

    Today, the Fox offers 15 undergraduate majors and the opportunity for all students to create an e-portfolio highlighting their work, participation and experiences at Fox. To fill their portfolio, students are encouraged to gain global experience inside and outside the classroom by participating in the Fox Abroad Program, Fox Immersion Program, and 20 Student Professional Organizations. Most of these programs include some form of community involved, studying abroad or interacting with global peoples. The Fox School of Business Immersion program provides students the follow academic experiences:

    • Freshmen are provided opportunities to get involved at Temple University, the Fox School of Business, and the local community.
    • Sophomores focus on their talents and passions through professional development opportunities through various elements of the campus community.
    • Juniors are encouraged to study abroad or get involved in the local community through volunteering or working.
    • Seniors are expected to take leadership roles in the Fox School of Business, student professional organizations, and the community.

    Notables

    Fox School of Business is in the top 15% of business schools. It has been able to reach this top-level achievement by focusing on student success metrics with the aid of faculty and staff in tutoring, advising, and study abroad programs. Fox has been able to implement two unique additional support programs to increase student connectiveness and diversity through the Capital Markets Room. The Capital Markets room allows students to create a student managed investment fund and use that fund to gain practical experience prior to graduation.

  4. Arizona State University
    Location

    Tempe, AZ

    Tuition

    $$$$$

    Overview

    Arizona State University is the #1 in the nation for academic innovation. Their business school, the W. P. Carey School of Business, supports that ranking by being a direct admit business school. Carey has its own advisors and tutors to support these student’s pursuit towards 30 business degrees. Students are encouraged to join one of the 45 business-related student organizations and engage in potential leadership opportunities.

    Features

    There is plenty for students to do on campus from over NCAA Division I sports to small class sizes. However, the W. P. Carey School of business has created some unique tools to build a long-term support network towards student success.

    Camp Carey: Camp Carey is a required rite of passage for all entering freshmen. Topics include: Defining the Carey Business Program, the history of Sun Devil Traditions, ASU Sun Devil expectations and ASU student resources.

    WPC 101 course: All entering freshmen and transfers are required to take this high level overview course. The course creates a direct connection between the student and the Carey Business school resources available to them. Topics include: Dual Enrollment Credits, AP courses or test scores, library services, supplemental instruction and so much more.

    Business Student Connections: Outside the ASU Carey classroom, students are immersed in the business development in many ways. The school offers a business-focused living and learning community. Students can live in this community on campus or, if the student chooses to commute, engage in this community through special events and seminars or join one of the 45 business related student organizations.

    P. Carey 360°: This is the Carey ePortfolio platform that will help build your career competencies prior to graduation. Competency areas include leadership development, Global & cultural engagement, networking, personal finance and many others.

    Notables

    The W. P. Carey School of Business makes sure that the students know that the faculty and staff are there for them throughout the semester. At the beginning of the semester, the academic dean holds a welcome back patio cookout. Throughout the semester, students can participate in special seminars with well-known brands and industries. Towards the end of the semester, these same revered brands are on campus actively recruiting students and graduates for internships, co-ops and permanent positions.

  5. University of Florida
    Location

    Gainsville, FL

    Tuition

    $$$$$

    Overview

    The University of Florida’s business department is called the Warrington College of Business. Warrington is comprised of several smaller schools – the Heavener School of Business, Fisher School of Accounting and the Hough Graduate School of Business. The Heavener School is the undergraduate school. It is ranked as the 18th in public undergraduate business school by the U.S. News & World Report’s Best Colleges of 2016. The program has also ranked in the top 12 in the following programs: Real Estate (4th), Accounting (5th), Quantitative Analysis (6th), Finance (10th) and Marketing (12th).

    Features

    Inside the Warrington College of Business, there are 35 student organizations. Nearly a third of the students participate in these groups. At the undergraduate level, students can pursue the following majors:

    • Accounting
    • Economics
    • Finance
    • General Studies
    • Information Systems
    • Management
    • Marketing

    Notables

    The University of Florida is a leading national research university The Warrington College of Business created the first completely online 4-year bachelor degree at a research university. The allows students to get a high quality, research focused bachelor degree that can be pursued as their schedule permits. The coursework and the research opportunities are the same as if they were physically on campus.

  6. Auburn University
    Location

    Auburn, AL

    Tuition

    $$$$$

    Overview

    Auburn University’s Raymond J. Harbert College of business was founded in 1967 in Auburn, Alabama. However, it was named after Raymond J. Harbert much later in 1982. Raymond J. Harbert made a $40 million donation to the college. Even today, it remains the largest gift in Auburn history. Today, Harbert is in Auburn, Alabama, and it is recognized as the largest business college in Alabama with an undergraduate student population of 4,500 students.

    Features

    The Harbert College of Business ensures that students receive a balanced education: hard sciences, business, arts and community engagement. All business majors must take art and science courses during their freshman and sophomore years. This way students have a broader experience and understanding prior to starting their chosen business degree major courses in the junior and senior years. At the time of this writing, the Harbert College of Business offers 14 undergraduate business majors including aviation, entrepreneurship, and supply chain.

    Notables

    The Harbert College of Business has gathered many top-ranking notables over the years. Many of the accolades are focused on their MBA programs. However, at the undergraduate level, Harbert is known for their accounting programs according to Bestcolleges.com, Public Accounting Report, and US News & World Report. You can’t have a great MBA and accounting programs without having a great faculty to support it. Overall this is a fantastic school that many global companies actively recruit.

  7. James Madison University
    Location

    Harrisonburg, WI

    Tuition

    $$$$$

    Overview

    James Madison University’s College of Business (CoB) was established in 1972 in Harrisonburg, Virginia. Today, the college ranks in the following top 50 programs in the United States according to Bloomberg BusinessWeek’s: 18th place for undergraduate business programs in United States and 41st place globally. What is even more impressive is that the JMU is one of 182 institutions that have both their business and accounting accreditations from the AACSB.

    Features

    Poets & Quants rank this business school at #10 for the best college experience at an undergraduate B-School. Based on the college’s surveys, here are some of the ways students at James Madison are actively engaging at the academic and future career levels:

    • Focused Career Events: Each major has their own specific career-based events throughout the semester. During these events, students can meet with potential firms, attend experimental learning tours or just have a relaxed conversation with recruiters.
    • Integrated Functional Systems course (COB 300): COB 300 introduces junior-level students to how corporate departments and various disciplines interact in real life. At the end of this 12-hour course, these juniors compete in a business plan competition in front of a panel of high level business leaders.
    • Google® Social Media Competitions. This is typically a marketing department student event at the global level. James Madison University’s marketing students have achieved the most wins and award placement in this competition than any other institution. They consistently win in the following categories: Social Impact, AdWords, and social media marketing at the regional and global levels.
    • CPA exam: Accounting department has the #1 pass rate in the nation.

    Notables

    Top employers actively recruit here at James Madison University College of Business. In today’s global economy, a JMU CoB student has the best reputation to be successful as an intern or a permanent employee. Some of the top employers for new graduates include: Accenture, Booz Allen, Goldman Sachs, IBM, Johnson & Johnson, etc. The median base salaries are just under $60,000 to start.

  8. University of Nebraska-Lincoln
    Location

    Lincoln, NE

    Tuition

    $$$$$

    Overview

    The University of Nebraska – Lincoln College of Business was founded in 1913. The College has developed such a high level, business curriculum that enabled it to be a founding member of the Association to Advance Collegiate Schools of Business (AACSB). And, yes, it is accredited by the AACSB. In addition to the AACSB accreditation, it is one of the 36 University partners in the U.S. with the Chartered Financial Analyst designation by the CFA Institute.

    Features

    Today, the College of Business offers over 10 undergraduate majors in accounting, actuarial science, agribusiness, business administration, economics, finance, international business, management, marketing, and supply chain management. Students are welcome to join several student organizations, career development and campus activity organizations. However, there are three organizations that a new student should check out.

    The Clifton Strengths Institute: The institute utilizes the StrengthsFinder Assessment program to conduct an annual coaching program for the institute members. The program is designed to identify and maximize the person’s strengths and direct them towards life-fulling work. This is the only strength-based research lab hosted at a college or university.

    The Honors Academy: Typically, an honor courses are just that – courses. However, the College of Business has taken it to an entirely new level. Students who select the Honor Academy join a 40-45 first-year cohort of College Business Students that will be together until graduation pursuing excellence in academics, real life experience and opportunities to increase understanding through volunteering, networking and competitions.

    Notables

    Students are also encouraged to join the Business Learning Communities. These learning communities at are an innovative culture that links classroom learning to real live scenarios. Here at the College of Business, students are able to join one of two learning communities. One focuses on the actual development of business leaders. The other focuses on global perspectives, goals and aspirations of today’s global leaders. Both communities are useful to the development of the entire student facing a local, global economy.

  9. Carnegie Mellon University
    Location

    Pittsburgh, PA

    Tuition

    $$$$$

    Overview

    The Carnegie Mellon University – Tepper School of Business was founded in 1949 in Pittsburg, Pennsylvania. Since their inception, they have never followed the traditional rules concerning business education. They set up their program so that the students learn the following this particular schedule: freshman year build a foundation in analysis, communication and business context. Sophomores and Juniors being their in-depth study connected to their major and minor. Seniors focus only on their major and minor coursework so that when they graduate they continue their own path becoming innovative entrepreneurs, business executives, venture capitalist and lawyers.

    Features

    Carnegie’ Tepper undergraduate students are given vast opportunities to put their classroom learning into practice. The university and the business school have developed several lab-like learning environments for students to participate from their freshman year on.

    Annual Etiquette Dinner and the Tepper Ball are formal events to engage students in proper etiquette at a formal dinner or party. These skills are necessary for their future careers as many will be attending formal meal-based functions, parties or interviews.

    Competitions: What is business without a sense of competition. There are internal and external competitions that students are expected to participate. Some are based on a real-life business situation or a research study. However, most will require a professional presentation to corporate executives and business leaders. These events assist students in gaining pertinent experience prior to entering the workforce.

    Networking events: There are weekly events that allow students to explore various avenues of industry and build quality networking skills. Some of the events are called the “Waffle, Coffee and Professor” or “Tepper Ball”. In a global economy, social interaction is key to building a strong prosperous business.

    Notables

    Carnegie-Tepper has been ranked #6 in the nation for the best overall business school by the 2017 US News & World Report. Their management information systems program, Production and Operations Management program and Quantitative Analysis programs are ranked as #2 in the nation. BusinessWeek states that Tepper graduates have some of top highest paid starting salaries within the US. Overall, Tepper School of Business graduates are highly sought after for their world-renown education.

  10. Arkansas State University-Jonesboro
    Location

    Jonesboro, AR

    Tuition

    $$$$$

    Overview

    Arkansas State University – Jonesboro College of Business is in Jonesboro, Arkansas, founded in 1946. Today, the college has four focuses: Accounting; Computer & Information Technology; Economics & Finance; and Management & Marketing. At the ASU- Jonesboro College of Business, students can pursue 10 undergraduate degrees and 2 certificates.

    Features

    ASU – Jonesboro College of Business is focused on the success of their students and the companies that they will work for. In addition to their academic regiment, students can spread their academic wings to participate in several opportunities that impact the local economy and businesses:

    Women’s Business Leadership Center: This is a leadership program geared to engaging females to pursue business courses and careers. The organization engages women of all ages and educational backgrounds to become fully equipped to pursue a strong career in business through partnerships, collaboration, mentoring and networking opportunities.

    R.M. Bob Wood Sales Leadership Center: ‘He Sales Leadership Program’: This is not your typical sales program. This program is to enhance the student experience and promote personal and professional growth and success. It contains a comprehensive sequence of sales and sales management classes emphasizing the consultative and relationship in the selling processes. It looks to spark student innovation and collaborative thinking while advancing the personal selling and sales leadership profession.

    Delta Center for Economic Development: coordinates the economic development outreach services of a-state to servicing the business, government and citizens of Arkansas. Assist with retooling and training current and future leaders.

    Notables

    Arkansas students can assist with the retooling of today’s workforce by assisting in the Delta Center for Economic Development and the A-State Small Business & Technology Development Center. Both centers are created to support the economic development of local businesses, government and citizens by providing opportunities to expand their current skills to include current workforce needs. The Delta Center works directly with the workers in the area and the A-Sate Small Business Center works with the businesses and managers. Together, these two are able to support over 16 counties in northern Arkansas.

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