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The 10 Best Online MBA Programmes in the World (2018)

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For business professionals, studying for an MBA is an essential step on the career development ladder; it creates a wealth of new opportunities, it develops sought-after managerial skills and it widens your network immeasurably.

However, by their very nature, MBA programmes are aimed at working professionals; as a result, not everybody has the time or the means to attend business school. That’s why many institutions are now offering accredited part-time courses online, allowing you to study around your working life at home or on the move.

Based on rankings data provided by Quacquarelli Symonds and the Financial Times, we’ve compiled a list of the top choices available, taking into account satisfaction levels, career benefits and value for money.

So, if you’re ready to take that next big career step, then read on. These are the best online MBA programmes in the world in 2018…

 


 

10. EuroMBA (European Consortium)

Length: 2 years
Intakes: 2 per year (January and July)
Residential component: Yes (6 weeks)
2018/19 tuition fees: €31,000 ($36,230 / £27,550) (spread over 2 years)

A collaborative experiment between six European universities, the EuroMBA combines the benefits of an expanded knowledge base with a huge network of potential contacts, offering students something a little different as a result.

The curriculum is taught over ten separate modules, each covering a different but essential aspect of modern management, while there are six compulsory weeks of residential school split equally between the six institutions. If the majority of your business is conducted in Europe – and if you want to combine your distance learning with some studying abroad – then this could be the perfect choice for you.

 

9. Southern Cross University (Australia)

Length: 2 years minimum
Intakes: 6 per year (January, March, April, July, August and October)
Residential component: No
2018/19 tuition fees: A$40,320 ($29,840 / £22,690) (for 16 study units)

Despite its relative youth, SCU’s online MBA programme offers a level of flexibility that many more established schools simply cannot; you can dip in and out of the course’s 16 units and still gain qualifications, even if you choose not to finish.

Additionally, you can also choose to focus on one of four specialist areas, including accounting, health services management, people management and information management. Indeed, with the entire course curriculum delivered online, you can work at a pace and direction that suits you and your career, meaning you get a highly sought-after qualification with minimum disruption.

 

8. Isenberg School of Management (USA)

Length: No minimum or maximum length
Intakes: 3 per year (March, July and November)
Residential component: Optional
2018/19 tuition fees: $31,500 (£23,950) (for 39 study credits)

Isenberg’s MBA programme has been operating online for over 10 years now, making it one of digital learning’s earlier pioneers. This also means that the school’s delivery methods have been constantly honed and fine-tuned over time to best suit the needs of its learners.

If you are local to Massachusetts, you can combine the online modules with face-to-face tuition, but if you’re not, then there’s no need to worry: Isenberg’s online-only tuition is every bit as complex and challenging as its campus-based counterpart. It also offers a variety of cutting-edge specialisms, including business analytics and sports management, meaning that you’ll always be at the tip of the curve.

 

7. Durham University (UK)

Length: 2 years
Intakes: 1 per year (September)
Residential component: Optional
2018/19 tuition fees: £21,000 ($27,600) (spread across 2 years)

As a respected name in the business world, Durham’s online MBA programme is highly valuable. It is currently structured around the completion of eight modules, including a strategic case analysis that takes the place of a more traditional degree dissertation.

As with Isenberg, you can also choose to complement your study with residential classes or commit to studying fully online. You can even follow a set specialism pathway, which typically encompasses one area from entrepreneurship, consultancy or technology. On the whole, though, Durham emphasises flexibility, with manageable study periods allowing you to maintain that all-important balance.

 

6. Imperial College London (UK)

Length: 2 years
Intakes: 2 per year (January and September)
Residential component: Yes
2018/19 tuition fees: £35,600 ($46,800) (spread across 2 years)

As one of the top universities in the world, you can expect nothing but quality from Imperial College London’s online MBA programme. With a focus on technological innovation and a global outlook, it is also one of the most cutting-edge.

As a result, ICL’s standards are high. You will be expected to commit a lot of time to preparing for lectures, completing the required reading and working on assessments. There is also a lot of emphasis on contributing to the business school’s wider community, as well as working on various professional development tasks.

 

 

5. George Washington University (USA)

Length: No minimum or maximum length
Intakes: 3 per year (January, May and August)
Residential component: Optional
2018/19 tuition fees: Not provided

Built around a mix of real-time live learning and recorded content, George Washington University’s online MBA programme offers students the opportunity to work closely with professors through a designated digital classroom platform.

They are also encouraged to collaborate and develop projects with peers, creating a strong sense of belonging and camaraderie, although if you’re local to the Washington, DC area, you can also attend physical classes, too.

 

4. Warrington College of Business (USA)

Length: 2 years (shorter options available)
Intakes: 1 per year (May for fully online programme, August for 1-year and 2-year hybrid programmes)
Residential component: Optional
2018/19 tuition fees: $59,800 (£45,470)

Warrington’s full-time MBA programme is one of the most renowned and established in the US, and its online version is determined to emulate this success. As such, students follow the exact same study pattern and timeline.

Although there are assessments and grades, the faculty are keen to emphasise that success is tailored to each individual and their specific goals. This flexibility is mirrored by the availability of additional hybrid courses, where students can obtain their MBA in a shorter period of time if their circumstances permit.

 

3. Warwick Business School (UK)

Length: 2-4 years
Intakes: 2 per year (January and June)
Residential component: Yes (2 weeks)
2018/19 tuition fees: £31,210 ($41,040) for January 2019 intake or £32,460 ($42,680) for June 2019 intake

Topping the Financial Times’ online MBA rankings for 2018, Warwick Business School’s two-year course features an innovative teaching style, supplemented by regular guest speakers and lecturers from some of the world’s foremost business institutions.

That’s not all, either. Built around eight compulsory modules, four electives based on your interests and a final consultancy project, the programme also features a face-to-face module option, as well as the chance to spend a semester in either India, China, Mexico or Brazil.

 

2. Kelley School of Business (USA)

Length: 2 years
Intakes: 2 per year (Spring and Autumn)
Residential component: Yes (1 week per year)
2018/19 tuition fees: Approximately $68,000 (£51,700) (subject to change)

Widely recognised as one of the top online MBA schools in the country, the Kelley School of Business offers a huge amount of flexibility. Elective modules make up a significantly higher proportion of your credits than at other institutions, meaning that the course is truly tailored to your interests and needs.

There are also opportunities to earn dual degrees, take part in the school’s Washington Campus politics programme, as well as spend time in emerging markets, including in Cuba, Botswana and Myanmar. If you’re looking to be more immersed in your learning experience, then there are few courses as varied and as interesting as this.

 

1. IE Business School (Spain)

Length: 18 months
Intakes: 2 per year (April and October)
Residential component: Yes (2 weeks plus optional 3rd week)
2018/19 tuition fees: €51,200 ($59,860 / £45,500)

Marketed as a ‘Global MBA’ rather than an online one, IE’s innovative programme describes itself as ‘disruptive’ – a bold claim, but one that is backed up by a course 15 years in the making.

Utilising a ‘blended methodology’, there are numerous online and in-person lectures, seminars and conferences that you would be expected to attend, tailored carefully around each individual’s personal and career circumstances. This is then followed by a three-step career prep process that includes simulations, coaching sessions and mock industry-specific interviews.

If you can meet the stringent standards and entry requirements, IE’s revolutionary teaching strategies offer an online MBA experience quite like no other.

 


 

As you can see, there are no shortage of high-quality options when it comes to gaining an MBA from afar. Indeed, if you possess the dedication and determination to balance a professional postgraduate qualification alongside a full-time job, then there are some truly amazing opportunities to further your career and make crucial connections. This list is a great place to start!

Have you studied an MBA online? What were your experiences like? Let us know in the comments below!

 

Currency conversions are based on rates supplied by XE.com on 25 July 2018.

SOURCES
Financial Times
TopMBA.com