Part-Time MBA Battle: Houston v. Dallas

Top Part Time Texas MBA

Among the bustling metros of the Lone Star State, Dallas and Houston are the biggest. Locals from the Houston and Dallas metros are die-hard about their towns, and their business schools take their MBA programs seriously. Both cities offer plenty of part-time options to prospective MBAs, so let’s take a deeper dive.


While Houston and Dallas are only about four hours away by car, each metro offers completely different living experiences. As far as weather goes, if you dislike humid climates, Dallas may be the location for you. If you love being by the water, Houston may be up your alley—though the city, unfortunately, is more at risk for tropical storms and hurricanes.

Houston is statistically the more expensive city to live in, but not by a significant margin. According to Numbeo, a database of user contributed data about cities, you would need around $4,242 in Houston to maintain the same standard of life that you can have with $4,000 in Dallas, assuming you do not own a home. As far as entertainment goes, it’s really a tie: Both metros boast great restaurants, shopping, sports entertainment, and nightlife.

Here are a couple more quick stats comparing Houston and Dallas, courtesy this awesome infographic from SpareFoot:

  • Houston is the 5th best US city for good jobs, Dallas ranks 18th.
  • Houston is the 5th best US city for job seekers, Dallas is 6th.
  • Dallas has the 13th lowest unemployment rate in the US, Houston is 18th.
  • Dallas has the 9th most affordable housing marketing in the US, Houston is 8th.

Not every MBA candidate can manage a full-time degree program. So many business school students continue to work throughout their studies, balancing a job and graduate school through a part-time MBA program. Many of these programs take place in the evenings and on weekends, allowing for flexibility along with continued professional growth.

Dallas Part-Time MBA Programs

The following schools in the Dallas metro offer part-time MBA programs:

The Southern Methodist Professional MBA features a flexible and modular curriculum that students can customize to their learning and future career goals. Students have the option to choose a concentration and a minor from nine subject areas, including: accounting, finance, general business, information technology and operations management, management, marketing, real estate and strategy, and entrepreneurship.

The estimated total cost of the aforementioned Professional MBA program is $93,696. This figure excludes costs such as books, materials, housing, or transportation. However, approximately 60 percent of students receive some form of financial aid, either need-based or consumer loans.

The Professional MBA program at the Naveen Jindal School of Business consists of taking two classes each semester, and classes are usually offered Monday-Friday from 4 to 10 p.m. The program is offered three different formats: a Evening Cohort, Flex, and Online. The Evening cohort option can be completed in 24 months, and allows the entire intake to experience the 30 required classes together. The Flex program lets students finish their degree on their own schedule, online and on campus. Similarly, the Online MBA offers plenty of scheduling options, but a limited choice of electives and concentrations.

Tuition costs depend on the amount of courses taken per semester and which track students are enrolled in. At UT Dallas, students pay lower per credit when taking more classes per semester. The estimated cost for tuition and fees for in-state residents in the Evening PMBA program is $42,347, and $78,449 for non-residents and international students. Tuition and fees for resident students in the online program is estimated at $49,531, with non-resident tuition at $84,016. Scholarship opportunities are available.

The Professional MBA at the Neeley School of Business meets twice a week in the evenings. The cohort-based program that can be completed in as little as 24 months or as many as 33 months—the amount of time it takes to complete the program depends on how students schedule their elective courses.

One year of the Texas Christian Professional MBA program costs an estimated $33,090, which includes tuition and other program fees. Books and other course materials are estimated at about $1,000.

Students in the University of North Texas MBA program have the option of taking courses on a full-time or part-time basis, and can earn a MBA degree in such areas as finance, health services management, marketing, logistics and supply chain management, organizational behavior and human resource management, strategic management, or business studies. Students completing the MBA in business studies also have the opportunity to complete a concentration in international business, library science and technology, real estate, or sustainability.

The UT Arlington Professional Cohort MBA structure is created for experienced professionals who want to continue to work full-time and follows the same 45-credit hour curriculum as the MBA flexible structure. The cohort structure allows students to complete courses in accelerated five or eight-week sessions, which allows students to complete their MBA in 24 months. This format is only offered at the Fort Worth campus. The estimated cost of the MBA program at the University of Texas at Arlington College of Business is $25,382.

Houston Part-Time MBA Programs

The following schools in the Houston metro offer part-time MBA programs:

The University of Houston Professional MBA program is a flexible program that takes 22 months to complete and consists of 48 credit hours. Students must complete 21 core credit hours and 27 elective credit hours.

Tuition costs at Bauer are estimated at $42,000 for Texas residents, $66,600 for non-resident students, and $72,000 for international students. Costs can change depending on how many classes a student is taking and their student status MBA students can get financial assistance in the form of student loans and scholarships, such as the MBA Bauer Excellence Scholarship. Students can receive up to $10,000 per year, qualify for in-state tuition (for nonresidents) and receive a two-year subscription to The Wall Street Journal.

The Cameron School of Business offers a flexible MBA that holds classes on the weekends and in the evenings. Students in the MBA program at Cameron are required to complete 36 academic hours: 27 hours are in core course and nine credit hours are elective courses.

The cost of the Cameron School of Business MBA program is $1,163 per credit hour. Students taking eight or fewer credit hours per semester are required to pay a $47 activity fee. Those students taking nine or more hours are required to pay $82. Students must also pay a $100 new graduate student fee and an $80 technology fee. Students are required to pay all fees every fall and spring semester.

The Texas Southern MBA program at the Jesse H. Jones School of Business provides a general management education to students who are looking to advance their current careers in business management, and can be taken in a full-time or part-time schedule. Part-time program students can complete their MBA degree over a flexible amount of time, depending on their availability to complete courses. All students complete courses over the fall, spring, and summer semesters.

The Jones MBA costs about $7,130.38 a year for in-state residents and $13,700.38 a year for out-of-state folks. Other fees such as room and board, transportation, books and other personal expenses are not factored in the cost of the program.

Rice University’s MBA for Professionals is a flexible program that offers an evening or weekend option to allow students to maintain their current work schedules. The traditional professional MBA is held in a lock-step format while the Extended Professional MBA program holds classes two evenings a week during the first semester and one evening a week after that. Students in this program can extend their education for three years or more, up to five, in order to better fit with their schedule.

The current tuition cost is $101,500 for the Evening and Evening Extended programs and $105,500 for the Weekend program. The tuition covers the complete 22-month schedule of coursework and is billed in 25 percent increments over four semesters.

The University of Houston Downtown part-time MBA can be completed in two or three years. Classes are offered in a hybrid form, with some classes taking place on campus and others online. Students may elect to pursue a “soft start” to their MBA, where students pursue their concentration classes first, or a traditional-start MBA students, where they take core classes the first year, followed by concentration classes in the second year.

The school also offers a three-year path to an MBA where students work on their concentration the first year and then take the core classes in the second and third years, or elect to pursue a traditional start by taking core classes in the first two years and concentration courses in their third year.

At $532 per credit hour for in-state students, tuition for a UHD MBA varies depending on the concentration. Students concentrating on finance, human resource management, leadership management, or business development/sales management will pay $21,840. Concentrations in supply chain management, international business or accounting cost $23,940. An MBA with a general management concentration costs $18,088. Out-of-state students pay about $28,300 and out-of-country students pay around $28,480.

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About the Author

Max Pulcini

Max Pulcini is a Philadelphia-based writer and reporter. He has an affinity for Philly sports teams, Super Smash Bros. and cured meats and cheeses. Max has written for Philadelphia-based publications such as Spirit News, Philadelphia City Paper, and Billy Penn, as well as national news outlets like The Daily Beast.

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