The MBA Degree Guide

The MBA degree is commonly known as a Master’s in Business Administration.  An MBA degree provides you with the education, knowledge, and experience to prepare you for real-world experiences.  There are a variety of concentrations and specializations for an MBA degree with the most popular being: Accounting, Business Analytics, Finance, International Management, Management, and Marketing.  We have provided the most FAQ’s for prospective applicants considering an MBA degree below.

What is an MBA Degree?

An MBA is a master’s degree issued by a higher education institution.  The majority of MBA degrees are accredited by the AACSB (Association to Advance Collegiate Schools of Business), however there are also other accreditations including AMBA (The Association of MBA’s), DETC (The Distance Education and Training Council), ACSBP (Accreditation Council for Business Schools and Programs) and IACBE (International Accreditation Council for Business Education). Accreditation is an independent evaluation process designed to recognize colleges and universities that meet rigorous academic standards. In order to gain accreditation, institutions of higher learning must demonstrate their academic quality to an independent accrediting agency. MBA degrees that have an accreditation increase faculty retainment and quality. In addition, Accreditation agencies meticulously evaluate the faculty at MBA-granting institutions to ensure that they meet high teaching standards and contribute to the discipline through research.

What are the Top Reasons to Get an MBA Degree?

The top reasons to get an MBA degree include:

  • Change in career or industry
  • Seeking to increase knowledge of business landscape
  • Seeking promotion or increase in salary
  • Expand your professional network

Is the MBA Degree right for you?

The MBA degree is right for someone who is changing careers or wants to change industries, seeking to increase knowledge of business principles, or seeking promotion/increase in the cosalary.  However, there are alternative options to the MBA.  Those options include certificate programs, specialized masters and leadership development programs, among others.

When choosing an MBA degree it is important to consider the resources the program provides for your goals. For example, if you are seeking an opportunity to change careers into healthcare, it is vital to choose a program that develops your healthcare business expertise and provides a network of healthcare-related networking opportunities. 

How many years does it take to get an MBA?

On average, an MBA takes 20-24 months to complete, however a variety of factors will impact the length of the program. Online MBA programs offer the most flexibility and can take 12 months to over 5 years, while some full-time programs offer one-year structures. 

The main factors that impact the length of a program is the structure itself and your time commitment.  For example, some part-time programs can be completed in as little as 9-12 months, however the typical student who takes 3 to 6 credits per semester may take 5+ years to complete.

Is an MBA a good investment?

An MBA can be a great investment that can achieve your goals for getting an MBA degree. We organized the benefits based on the top reasons to get an MBA and how it can impact your return on investment.

Change in career or industry: Programs that provide career services for their students can be a great investment for getting your MBA.  If you are seeking to change industries, the concentration or specialization you choose will build your expertise while taking your MBA.  Some programs even offer personal career coaches to help develop your resume, refine your interview skills and connect you with corporate recruiter.

Seeking to increase knowledge of business landscape: If this is your main measure for return on investment of your MBA, then research programs before applying.  If you are seeking a career in tech, find programs that have strong corporate partners in the tech industry. Location is also important since many MBA programs have a strong local network. Lastly, research professors and curriculum to identify learning methods that will challenge you.

Seeking promotion or increase in salary: One of the main reasons people pursue their MBA is to receive a promotion or an increase in salary.  Prior to starting your MBA, contact your HR department to see if they provide any tuition assistance.  Many MBA programs have strong corporate partners who have agreements in place to receive your MBA degree. When the company invests in your education, they are more likely to provide promotions and/or salary increases.

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