Earning an Online MBA is a great way to climb the ladder. One quick way to determine the quality of an institute of higher education is through its accreditation. The two primary types of higher education accreditation to consider, regional and programmatic accreditation. In the United States, accreditation is granted by independent accrediting organizations that regularly confirm the institutions are providing high-quality curricula and meet certain academic standards.
While earning an accredited Online MBA is not necessarily a guarantee that employers will recognize it, it does provide an extra credential to add to your resume. In some cases, employers may prefer applicants who have earned an accredited Online MBA in order to be considered for higher-level positions.
The Master of Business Administration (MBA) is an advanced degree designed to equip graduates with the skills and knowledge necessary for a successful career in today’s competitive business world. It provides students with an industry-relevant curriculum that gives them the flexibility to adapt to the changing business dynamics. The MBA degree encompasses a range of disciplines, such as finance, data analysis, accounting, marketing, and operations management.
With an MBA, graduates have the edge and the ability to stand out in the job market. Furthermore, MBA holders are better positioned to take on leadership roles, allowing them to have a greater impact on the success of their organizations.
Develop your MBA Stack
Pursuing an accredited Online MBA will help students expand their knowledge and career opportunities. With so many options available, it can be difficult to decide which program is the best fit. That’s why we’ve compiled a list of the top 30 best accredited online MBA degree programs. All the universities have regional accreditation, and each college or school of business runs each online MBA program with an AACSB accreditation.
These accredited Online MBA programs offer the highest quality education and are designed to help you achieve your goals. Explore our list to find the right program for you and get started on your path towards success!
This ranking list highlights the best accredited Online MBA degrees. They combine excellence and flexibility. These accredited Online MBA programs are offered in either an online or hybrid format and come from some of the most prestigious business schools.
For the ranking order, we collected data from four major ranking systems: Quacquarelli Symonds, Forbes, the Wall Street Journal, and U.S. News and World Report. All MBA ranking scores were weighted equally and averaged. Then they were adjusted to a 100-point scale to highlight each accredited Online MBA degree’s Stacked Score.
The Best Accredited Online MBA Degree Programs
1 Johns Hopkins University – Baltimore, Maryland
In Baltimore, Maryland, Johns Hopkins University has been regionally accredited by the Middle States Commission on Higher Education for over 100 years. Johns Hopkins’ MBA programs are offered through the AACSB-accredited Carey School of Business. The Flexible MBA is a 54-credit accredited online MBA program, which takes two years to complete. Aimed at working professionals, this part-time program allows students to balance their education with their careers. It offers eight specialization options in
- Business analytics and risk management;
- Digital marketing;
- Entrepreneurial marketing;
- Entrepreneurship, innovation, and technology;
- Financial management;
- Health care management, innovation, and technology;
- Investments; and
- Public and private sector leadership.
Students can choose to participate in asynchronous or synchronous classes or blend a combination of the two. For those who desire in-person interaction, this fully online MBA program offers optional in-person residencies for two to three days at the Harbor East campus and global immersion options.
Stacked Score: 96.08
2 Duke University – Durham, North Carolina
The AACSB-accredited Fuqua School of Business at Duke University offers a number of MBA programs, including a Weekend Executive MBA program and a Global Executive MBA program. Both of these programs are offered in hybrid formats with in-person and online components. These programs are designed for working professionals and are 22 and 21 months in length, respectively. The Weekend Executive MBA program has monthly three-day campus residencies in Durham with online classes in the interim. Likewise, the Global Executive MBA program is a hybrid of online learning paired with international residencies at various locations worldwide.
Students in both MBA programs may choose to earn a certificate in
- Energy and environment,
- Entrepreneurship and innovation,
- Health sector management
- Marketing, or
Located in Durham, North Carolina, Duke is regionally accredited by the SACSCOC.
Stacked Score: 94.87
3 University of California, Los Angeles – Los Angeles, California
The Fully Employed MBA at the University of California, Los Angeles, is a hybrid MBA program aimed at working professionals. Students may meet for class at the UCLA campus one weekend per month, use online classes, and study the rest of the time. For those students who wish to quickly move through the program, it is possible to finish the FEMBA in just 27 months, though students have up to five years to earn their MBA degrees. This is a part-time program only.
The WSCUC regionally accredits UCLA. The FEMBA is run through UCLA’s AACSB-accredited Anderson School of Management. There are a number of specializations offered by the Anderson FEMBA, including
- Entertainment management,
- Global management,
- Leaders in sustainability,
- Real estate,
- Social impact, and
- Tech management.
Stacked Score: 93.50
4 University of Michigan, Ann Arbor – Ann Arbor, Michigan
The AACSB-accredited Stephen M. Ross School of Business at the University of Michigan, Ann Arbor, offers a top accredited Online MBA program. Classes are held in the evenings and are done synchronously, increasing the interactivity between classmates and faculty. In addition, students also participate in three in-person residencies in either the U.S. or China. Students may also choose to participate in the semester-long MBA Global Exchange. Additionally, for those who are interested, it is possible to take in-person electives at the Ann Arbor campus.
This is a 57-credit MBA program, of which over 17 of those credits go towards electives, allowing students to tailor their classes to meet their particular career goals and interests. In general, students can earn their MBA degrees in two and a half to three and a half years.
The University of Michigan, Ann Arbor is regionally accredited by the Higher Learning Commission.
Stacked Score: 93.42
5 Carnegie Mellon University – Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania
In Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, the Middle States Commission on Higher Education has accredited Carnegie Mellon University. Carnegie Mellon offers its Tepper Online MBA program through its AACSB-accredited Tepper School of Business. This is a part-time and STEM-designated program that takes a hybrid approach. Classes are held synchronously two nights each week for 70 minutes. In the interim, students work at their own pace on offline content. For an in-person component, Tepper Online MBA students engage in Access Weekends. These are opportunities for students to attend classes, lectures, workshops, networking events, and career-planning meetings at the Carnegie Mellon campus.
Like its on-campus counterpart, the Tepper Online MBA offers concentrations in:
- Business technologies,
- Healthcare analytics,
- Operations management,
- Operations research,
- Organizational behavior,
- Strategy, and
Tepper also focuses heavily on leadership development, pairing MBA students with leadership coaches to create a plan that helps students develop their empathy, effectiveness as a leader, and self-awareness.
Stacked Score: 91.41
6 Rice University – Houston, Texas
Regionally accredited by the SACSCOC, Rice University offers a 54-credit online MBA program. The MBA@Rice program can be completed in 24 months for students who enroll full-time. For those enrolled part-time, students typically earn their degrees in 36 months. This is a mostly online program with several Rice Residentials at the University’s Houston, Texas, campus, and the option to participate in Global Field Experiences internationally.
The average working experience of students in the MBA@Rice program is seven years. Classes are done synchronously over Zoom each week with asynchronous case studies, simulations, and team projects assignments each week. Students may choose from among seven optional focus areas in this program, which include
- Corporate strategy,
- Corporate finance,
- Investment management, and
The MBA@Rice program runs through the AACSB-accredited Jesse H. Jones Graduate School of Business.
Stacked Score: 91.28
7 Washington University in St. Louis – Saint Louis, Missouri
The AACSB-accredited Olin Business School at Washington University in St. Louis has an online MBA program that is entirely online. Unlike many other online MBA programs, this one has no residency requirements.
Students take two to three classes at a time year-round over the course of 30 months, though for those who need more time, it is possible to take up to five years to finish this online MBA program. Five hours each week are dedicated to synchronous coursework, including faculty discussions. There is also around an hour and a half each week of asynchronous content and an additional two to four hours of self-directed study. Throughout the course of the program, students work on their Digital Impact Projects, creating a high-potential digital initiative as the capstone of the program.
Most students in this accredited online MBA program have 10 years of working experience. While many online MBA programs require a GRE or GMAT score, or offer a waiver for those with certain qualifications, WashU’s Online MBA program does not require any standardized test scores for admission.
The Higher Learning Commission regionally accredits Washington University in St. Louis.
Stacked Score: 89.69
8 University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill – Chapel Hill, North Carolina
The University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill has an online MBA program through the AACSB-accredited Kenan-Flagler Business School. This is also a STEM-designated MBA program. Students may choose to enroll in the MBA@UNC as either full-time or part-time students, meaning that the program can be completed in as little as 18 months or as many as 36. Those students who enroll in two classes per quarter, which is common, can expect to earn their degrees in 24 months.
The MBA@UNC does require students to attend two in-person Summits, which are quarterly immersive experiences at the UNC campus at Chapel Hill and at another city elsewhere around the globe. During these Summits, students examine challenges facing the business world and build relationships with classmates and faculty. Concentrations for the MBA@UNC program are available for the MBA@UNC in
- Data analytics and decision making,
- Marketing, and
- Strategy and consulting.
UNC at Chapel Hill is regionally accredited by the SACSCOC.
Stacked Score: 88.57
9 University of Southern California – Los Angeles, California
Students in the accredited Online MBA degree program at the University of Southern California can expect to attend one week of on-campus residency in Los Angeles at the beginning of the program. Beyond this requirement, students otherwise engage virtually through asynchronous content and two synchronous classes per week. The asynchronous component of the classes includes video content, moderated discussion boards, simulations and case studies, and various self-assessments and other learning experiences.
For the synchronous content, aside from weekly classes, students engage in virtual activities, including team projects, as well as one-on-one sessions with faculty. Run by the AACSB-accredited Marshall School of Business, this is a 21-month program and requires a total of 51 credits. Most students in Marshall’s accredited Online MBA have 10 years of working experience.
The WSCUC regionally accredits the University of Southern California.
Stacked Score: 88.53
10 University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign – Champaign, Illinois
Regionally accredited by the HLC, the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign offers an online MBA program through the AACSB-accredited Gies College of Business. This iMBA is an entirely online MBA program. Most students graduate from this program in about two and a half years. The average student in the iMBA program has 10 years of professional work experience.
The core curriculum is broken into four modules, which are Strategic Leadership and Management, Managerial Economics and Business, Value Chain Management, and Financial Management. Each core area includes a number of courses within that theme. The iMBA also offers Focus Areas Specializations in
- Business analytics,
- Digital marketing,
- Entrepreneurship and strategic innovation,
- Global challenges in business, and
- Mergers and acquisitions.
Students need to complete two Focus Area Specializations to graduate. In addition, they all conclude with a Specialization Capstone project in addition to the wider Program Capstone at the conclusion of the 72 credits.
Stacked Score: 87.83
11 University of California, Davis – Davis, California
The AACSB-accredited Graduate School of Management at the University of California, Davis, offers the MBA@UCDavis as their online MBA program. Classes in the MBA@UCDavis are held synchronously with live online classes and face-to-face discussions with classmates and faculty. There is an in-person component to the program as well, with multi-day residentials in Silicon Valley, Davis, and Napa Valley for networking and coursework. There are no specific concentrations or specializations in the MBA@UCDavis. Instead, students can deepen their knowledge and expertise in elective areas of their choice while also completing the program’s core coursework, which includes courses such as:
- Financial Accounting,
- Markets and the Firm,
- Negotiation in Organizations, and
- The Individual and Group Dynamics.
This is a STEM-designated, 72-credit program that is designed for working professionals. Students can apply in January, April, June, or September, and can expect to earn their degrees in 24 to 36 months.
The WASC Senior College and University Commission regionally accredit UC Davis.
Stacked Score: 87.75
12 University of Washington – Seattle, Washington
The University of Washington offers its Hybrid MBA program through the AACSB-accredited Michael G. Foster School of Business. The Hybrid MBA program is a two-year program designed for working professionals. Although classes are held synchronously in the evenings to allow flexibility for those students with daytime work or other obligations, this is a full-time program, and most students spend about 20 to 30 hours each week dedicated to coursework.
This 62-credit program is completed mostly online through a combination of team work, guided independent study, and Foster Live sessions. These Foster Live sessions are 60 to 90 minutes synchronous sessions with faculty and classmates each week. There are also Thursday evening review sessions online, which are optional. The in-person component of the program requires students to attend three to five days of intensives at the UW’s Seattle campus at the beginning of each quarter. The program is divided into 50 credits of core courses, and the remaining 12 credits are dedicated to electives. The University of Washington is regionally accredited by the Northwest Commission on Colleges and Universities.
Stacked Score: 87.22
13 University of Wisconsin-Madison – Madison, Wisconsin
The Higher Learning Commission has regionally accredited the University of Wisconsin-Madison. The AACSB-accredited Wisconsin School of Business runs a 44-credit online Professional MBA program. This program is done predominantly online. Courses are held on Wednesday evenings in a synchronous format for an interactive experience with classmates and faculty. However, one weekend each month, students are expected to be at UW’s Madison campus.
This program’s specializations are referred to as badges, and students can earn a badge in
- Business analytics,
- Business responsibility,
- Customer insight,
- Financial insights,
- Strategic growth, and
- Strategic innovation.
Students must earn a total of four badges to complete the Professional MBA program. Each badge is made up of three courses which are all three months long. Students can expect to earn their MBA degrees in two to five years, depending on their chosen course load. Most students enroll in UW’s Professional MBA program in a part-time capacity.
Stacked Score: 87.16
14 Emory University – Atlanta, Georgia
The Executive MBA program at Emory University is offered in multiple formats, including hybrid and online (as well as in-person). Run through the AACSB-accredited Goizueta Business School, the EMBA can be done entirely online with optional immersions. Immersions are held at the U.S. Army base of Fort Benning, Georgia, for the Leader’s Reaction course, a week-long experience at an international location, and in Atlanta for a multi-day Executive Insights immersion.
Students can expect to spend six hours each week in online classes. Alternatively, for those who would like a bit more in-person experiences, the hybrid format allows for the same six hours of online classes in addition to on-campus classes over three weekends each semester. Regardless of their chosen format, students can earn their MBA degrees in a quick 18 months. In total, students take 27 core credits and an additional 24 elective credits, as well as two (optional) immersions.
Emory University is regionally accredited by the SACSCOC.
Stacked Score: 86.85
15 Syracuse University – Syracuse, New York
The Middle States Commission on Higher Education has regionally accredited Syracuse University, which offers its Online MBA program through the AACSB-accredited Martin J. Whitman School of Management. This is a 54-credit program that students can complete in 24 months. Classes are run in 12-week terms, and students typically take two courses each term. In addition to the core curriculum, students may elect to earn a specialization in
- Business analytics,
- Marketing management, or
- Supply chain management.
Alternatively, students have the option to pursue electives through other Syracuse University schools that align with their career goals.
While mostly done online, students in the accredited Online MBA program do participate in three in-person residencies. These are weekend experiences that are held in various locations, which have included Denver, Hong Kong, Munich, and New York City. These are times for students to engage in workshops and networking opportunities in person. In total, students take 12 core classes and five elective classes in addition to these three residencies.
A GMAT score is not required to apply for the Online MBA at Syracuse.
Stacked Score: 86.26
16 Boston University – Boston, Massachusetts
Boston University is accredited by the New England Commission of Higher Education. Its Online MBA program, run through AACSB-accredited Questrom School of Business, is a two-year program that students can complete entirely online. Classes are all synchronous and highly interactive. Students can expect to dedicate two hours each week to attending these synchronous classes. Classes meet mid-week in either the early morning at 7 am Eastern or later at 8 pm Eastern.
Courses throughout the Online MBA conclude with capstone projects, which can either be a team or an individual effort. Students can either use a prescribed prompt from that particular course or develop their own prompt that reflects that student’s career interest or focus.
All students in the Questrom Online MBA are assigned both a Learning Facilitator and a Student Success Specialist. The Learning Facilitator functions as a student’s subject matter expert for each class. The Student Success Specialist helps each student plan and engage most effectively in the program.
Stacked Score: 85.62
17 Purdue University – West Lafayette, Indiana
In West Lafayette, Indiana, Purdue University offers an online MBA program through its AACSB-accredited Krannert School of Management. This program is completed entirely online with zero in-person requirements. Students can expect to earn their MBA degrees in two years.
Courses are asynchronous with pre-recorded lectures. However, for those who wish it, there are two live sessions each week for students to discuss class content together or to hear from a guest speaker.
This accredited online MBA program is STEM-designated and quantitatively focused. Specializations are available in
- Business analytics,
- Global supply chain management,
- Innovation and technology commercialization, and
- Leadership, negotiation, and change management.
Most students who join Purdue’s accredited Online MBA have six to seven years of professional work experience. Neither the GMAT nor the GRE is required to apply for the Purdue Online MBA, though scores may be submitted for those who wish. Students can begin the program in May, August, or January each year.
Purdue University is regionally accredited by the Higher Learning Commission.
Stacked Score: 83.87
18 University of Florida – Gainesville, Florida
The University of Florida in Gainesville offers an AACSB-accredited online MBA program through the Warrington College of Business. Students may enroll in either the Online One-Year program or the Online Two-Year program. The One-Year takes 16 months to complete and is for those students with an undergraduate degree in business within the past seven years. Students are required to attend an on-campus orientation at the beginning of the program.
The Two-Year program takes 24 months to complete and offers a higher level of flexibility, given the extended timeline. Students in the Two-Year program also attend an on-campus orientation at the start of their program. On-campus residences are encouraged, though optional. Students should expect to spend 15 hours per week working on coursework. For either option, there is a requirement of a minimum of two years of professional, full-time working experience.
The University of Florida is accredited by the SACSCOC.
Stacked Score: 83.77
19 University of Rochester – Rochester, New York
Accredited by the Middle States Commission on Higher Education, the University of Rochester offers an Executive MBA program through its AACSB-accredited Simon Business School. This is a flexible program that allows students to study on campus in New York, online, or a hybrid of the two formats. Regardless of what format a student chooses, they can expect to earn their MBA degree in 21 months with part-time enrollment. Classes are held every Wednesday and two Saturdays each month. This is a STEM-designated MBA program. Students have the option to attend three in-person residencies to supplement their online classwork. There are also optional immersion experiences offered in India, Israel, Switzerland, Singapore, South Africa, or South Korea.
This program is aimed at business managers who already have 10 to 15 years of professional experience and are looking to either advance in their current trajectory or redefine their career goals. Students do not need to submit either a GRE or GMAT score to apply for the EMBA program.
Stacked Score: 82.56
20 University of Virginia – Charlottesville, Virginia
The University of Virginia offers two Executive MBA programs through its AACSB-accredited Darden School of Business, both of which use distance learning as a significant portion of the program. The Executive MBA is nearly identical to the Global Executive MBA. The primary distinction between the two is that the GMBA requests for weeklong international residencies, while the EMBA only requires a minimum of one international residency. Both programs also require weeklong residencies on the University of Virginia’s Charlottesville campus at the beginning and the end of the programs. In addition, there are weekend residences about once a month in Arlington, Virginia.
The online learning portion of the programs are usually twice a week on Tuesday and Thursday evenings. Online classes tend to use synchronous sessions.
There are seven 12-credit focus areas available for the EMBA program:
- Data analytics and technology,
- ESG and social impact,
- Marketing, and
The University of Virginia is accredited by the SACSCOC.
Stacked Score: 82.18
21 University of Maryland, College Park – College Park, Maryland
The accredited Online MBA degree program at the University of Maryland, College Park is a 54-credit program that students can complete in as little as 24 months. The majority of this program is done online. Students take 48 credits of foundation courses, a global study or international business course, as well as an Opening Residency and Capstone Residency. The Opening Residency is a three-day experience at the College Park campus.
The remaining coursework, excluding the global study option, uses both asynchronous and synchronous methods. This includes online live classes over Zoom each week.
In addition to the general specializations, students in the accredited Online MBA may pursue specializations in
- Information systems and business analytics, and
- Marketing supply chain management.
The Online MBA program is run by the Robert H. Smith School of Business, which is accredited by the AACSB. The Middle States Commission on Higher Education has accredited the University of Maryland, College Park.
Stacked Score: 81.20
22 University of California, Irvine – Irvine, California
At the AACSB-accredited Paul Merage School of Business at the University of California, Irvine, students interested in an online MBA program can enroll in the Fully Employed MBA. While there is a fully on-campus option for those who begin the FEMBA program in the spring, those who begin in the fall may choose from on-campus or a hybrid of on-campus and online.
Students going this route can earn their degree in 33 months if they take the summers off, or they can complete the program in 24 to 27 months if they take summer classes. Classes are held online twice a week for three hours in the evening during the core courses. In addition, students attend four Saturdays each quarter of in-person classes.
The FEMBA offers four immersions to help tailor the program to fit students’ particular career goals and interests. The immersion options available are
- Digital transformation,
- Health care management and policy,
- Innovation and entrepreneurship, and
- Real estate and urban development.
The University of California, Irvine is accredited by the WSCUC.
Stacked Score: 80.81
23 Case Western Reserve University – Cleveland, Ohio
In Cleveland, Ohio, the AACSB has accredited Case Western Reserve University’s Weatherhead School of Management. It runs an online MBA program that has a heavy healthcare management focus. About 40 percent of the accredited Online MBA program is accounted for by healthcare management credits. This is a 48-credit program that students can complete over two and a half years or eight academic terms.
Classes in the accredited Online MBA program are held synchronously, with an average of 60- or 90-minute sessions per class per week. However, students also complete in-person residencies in various hospital systems in the greater Cleveland area in order to gain hands-on learning and build on practical skills. These hospitals include Cleveland Clinic, Louis Stokes Cleveland VA Medical Center, MetroHealth, and University Hospital, in addition to healthcare practitioners across the Case Western Reserve campus who practice in all disciplines.
Case Western Reserve University is accredited by the Higher Learning Commission.
Stacked Score: 80.02
24 University of Minnesota – Winona, Minnesota
The University of Minnesota’s AACSB-accredited Carlson School of Management offers a Part-Time MBA program, available in an on-campus, online, or HyFlex format and an Online MBA program.
For the Online MBA program, students typically earn their degrees in three years. Students in this program have an average of 10 years of work experience. The Part-Time MBA program typically runs for two and a half to seven years, with the average student taking three and a half years to earn their degree. Students in this program have an average of six years of professional work experience. Students typically take classes in the evenings and on Saturdays. Both programs offer a global study requirement.
Students in the Part-Time MBA can choose from a number of specializations:
- Food & agribusiness,
- Information systems,
- Medical industry, and
- Supply chain.
At the beginning of the accredited Online MBA program, students attend a three-day, on-campus residency (Thursday through Saturday) at the University of Minnesota’s Twin Cities campus.
The University of Minnesota holds accreditation with the Higher Learning Commission.
Stacked Score: 78.24
25 Michigan State University – East Lansing, Michigan
In East Lansing, Michigan State University offers an Executive MBA Flex program. The EMBA Flex, which is run by the AACSB-accredited Eli Broad College of Business, is a hybrid program that students can complete in 20 months. This 45-credit program is made up of 29 courses, all of which are considered core. There are no electives for the EMBA Flex program. The program does require students to meet on the MSU campus one weekend per month for in-person sessions, and the remainder of their class and study is done online.
Neither a GRE nor GMAT score is required to apply to the EMBA Flex program. Rather, the admissions board seeks evidence of quantitative ability through previous courses and work experience.
Michigan State University is accredited by the HLC.
Stacked Score: 77.88
26 University of Miami – Coral Gables, Florida
At the University of Miami, the Patti and Allan Herbert Business School, which is AACSB-accredited, offers two online MBA programs. The Online MBA offers its courses through a combination of synchronous classes and asynchronous coursework paired with on-campus networking and learning experience at the University of Miami’s Coral Gables campus. No GMAT is required to apply for the accredited Online MBA program. Students can graduate in 20 months as full-time students from the Online MBA program or 28 months as part-time students.
This is a 48-credit program with two required immersions. Students with at least a bachelor’s degree in business and two years or more of professional business experience may also apply for the Accelerated Online MBA. This is a 16-month full-time or 24-month part-time program and is 35 credits.
The Global Executive MBA program is a 17-month program that follows a hybrid format. Students attend weekly online classes in addition to three-day residencies on campus every other month. The GEMBA is aimed at senior-level leaders and seasoned entrepreneurs.
The University of Miami is accredited by the SACSCOC.
Stacked Score: 76.65
27 Ohio State University – Columbus, Ohio
Ohio State University in Columbus offers an Online Working Professionals MBA program through its AACSB-accredited Max M. Fisher College of Business. This is a part-time program that can be done entirely online, fully on-campus, or in a hybrid format. Most students earn their accredited Online MBA degrees in three years, but students do have up to six to finish the program, and it can be completed in as little as two years. Courses are held on evenings and weekends with both videos and recorded classes, and at least 30 percent of course delivery is done synchronously. This is a 48-credit program, with 27 core credits and 21 elective credits.
Although not required, students in the WPMBA program can specialize in
- Data analytics,
- Global business,
- Human resources,
- Leadership and organizational behavior,
- Operations and logistics,
- Supply chain management, and
OSU is accredited by the Higher Learning Commission.
Stacked Score: 76.60
28 Wake Forest University – Winston-Salem, North Carolina
In Winston-Salem, North Carolina, Wake Forest University offers its Online MBA program through its AACSB-accredited School of Business. This is an entirely online program that is aimed at working professionals.
The accredited Online MBA program offers students the opportunity to pursue a concentration in one of three areas:
- Business analytics
- Finance, and
- Strategy and leadership.
Students interested in applying for the Wake Forest Online MBA must be fully employed to be considered, and preference is given to those students who have at least two years of professional, post-graduate working experience.
Wake Forest also offers a Hybrid MBA with options to take classes at its Charlotte, NC, campus and online. Unlike the fully online nature of the Online MBA program, however, 60 percent of the Hybrid MBA is done in person, and 40 percent is done online asynchronously.
The SACSCOC has accredited Wake Forest University.
Stacked Score: 74.95
29 George Washington University – Washington, District of Columbia
The AACSB-accredited School of Business at George Washington University offers both its Online MBA program and its Online MBA in Healthcare program. Students in the accredited Online MBA take, on average, six credits a semester (with one semester taking seven and a half credits). This program can be completed entirely online, though there are in-person experiential and global opportunities. Students attend one hour each week of live class sessions for each course. Classes are offered during evenings and weekends. This is a 46.5-credit program, which students can complete in three years.
Students can pursue a concentration in
- Human capital,
- Management leadership
- Management of technology and innovation,
- Project management, or
- Quantitative business foundations.
George Washington University also offers an Online MBA in Healthcare. This program follows all the same parameters and requirements of the Online MBA. However, the Online MBA in Healthcare is aimed at students who are already working in the healthcare field in any one of a variety of different capacities, from administrators to nurses.
George Washington University holds accreditation from the Middle States Commission on Higher Education.
Stacked Score: 74.06
30 Northeastern University – Boston, Massachusetts
In Boston, Massachusetts, the AACSB-accredited D’Amore-McKim School of Business at Northeastern University offers an Online MBA program that is 100 percent online, which students can complete in just 18 months. In total, students take 21 core credits and 29 elective credits, making this an elective-heavy program, with two-thirds of courses customizable to students’ interests. Additionally, students can specialize in one of three focus areas:
- Business analytics,
- Finance, or
- Innovation and entrepreneurship.
This is a predominantly asynchronous program, though students do have the option to attend live courses to connect with their classmates and faculty in real-time and face-to-face. The flexibility of the accredited Online MBA is meant to accommodate working professionals.
The New England Commission of Higher Education has accredited Northeastern University.
Stacked Score: 72.96
Finding the right MBA for you is important. As you research MBA program and build your MBA stack let’s explore accreditation and why it is important.
Accrediting organizations are recognized by either (or both of) the U.S. Department of Education or the Council on Higher Education Accreditation (CHEA). Interestingly, no federal regulation controls academic standards, so each state holds its own. Using independent accrediting organizations is a good way to ensure that any lack of oversight by state governments does not diminish the quality of academic excellence at institutes of higher education.
Regional accreditation has been a practice for over a hundred years as an effort to set and enforce academic standards in higher education. Being regionally accredited impacts not only a school’s credibility but also the distribution of federal financial aid and the ease of credit transfer for students.
This type of accreditation is mostly done through peer review via accrediting organizations, so other regionally accredited schools determine if a school meets the requirements for its own regional accreditation.
There are six regional accreditation regions across the country, which are
- Middle States,
- New England,
- North Central,
- Southern, and
The regional commissions accredit entire institutions, which is different from other accreditation we’ll look at shortly. There are seven regional accrediting organizations that accredit institutions of higher education. All seven of these organizations are recognized by both the U.S. Department of Education and the Council for Higher Education Accreditation (CHEA).
- Accrediting Commission for Community and Junior Colleges, Western Association of Schools and Colleges (ACCJC)
- Higher Learning Commission (HLC)
- Middle States Commission on Higher Education (MSCHE)
- New England Commission of Higher Education – (NECHE)
- Northwest Commission on Colleges and Universities (NWCCU)
- Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges (SACSCOC)
- WASC Senior College and University Commission (WSCUC)
Unlike regional accreditation, which looks at an institution as a whole, programmatic accreditation reviews particular programs at an institution. This type of accreditation is a tool to ensure that the program holds high academic standards. While there isn’t a programmatic accreditation that applies to every field, it is vital for a number of areas, including business, counseling, engineering, and nursing.
Students in fields that do have programmatic accreditation will want to pay attention to whether their chosen program is accredited and by what organization. Depending on the field, attending an unaccredited program may mean a student cannot qualify for necessary certifications or licensing. Programmatic accreditation is also a sign to employers that graduates of a program have the knowledge and skills needed for their field of choice.
Online programs, just like their in-person counterparts, can be accredited as well, as we have seen in this accredited online MBA ranking. For online programs, accreditation helps ensure that they are providing the same standard of academics as on-campus programs.
Business accreditation falls under the umbrella of programmatic accreditation. For a business school to qualify for accreditation, it must undergo an operational review of the standards of the accrediting organization.
Three of the major business accrediting organizations include
- Accreditation Council for Business Schools and Programs (ACBSP),
- Association to Advance Collegiate Schools of Business International (AACSB), and
- International Assembly for Collegiate Business Education (IACBE).
The AACSB is considered a beacon when it comes to business school accreditation. The AACSB is selective in awarding its accreditation, having only accredited less than 1000 business schools across the globe. Because it is so selective, it can be something that organizations look for when it comes to recruiting, especially for executive-level roles.
Once a program has been accredited, it is up for review of its accreditation every number of years. The AACSB, for example, which is the organization that accredits the programs in the online MBA ranking above, requires a review every five years on nine standards. These standards cover Strategic Management and Innovation; Learner Success; and Thought Leadership, Engagement, and Societal Impact.
We hope you found this accredited online MBA ranking helpful as you determine the best online MBA program for your career path and goals.
To Wrap it Up: Why is the appropriate accreditation for an MBA degree program so important?
An MBA degree program is designed to give graduates the skills and knowledge they need to assume a managerial-level role within their chosen industry. Therefore, it is essential that the program is properly accredited, as accreditation ensures that students will learn the most up-to-date and comprehensive tools and resources for the particular industry. Without accreditation, the curriculum may not be up to industry standards, and graduates may find themselves with a degree that is not recognized by employers. Accreditation also serves to ensure that school resources and instruction meet accepted standards of quality.
Written by: Tammie Cagle