Business is a topic that most people are familiar with, but not everyone understands the difficult skills that make great business leaders successful. The following Top 25 Online MBA Programs in California rank the best degree programs for future business leaders in one of the most populated and business-oriented regions in the United States.
In fact, is there a better state for US leaders to earn their MBA? California students have a unique opportunity to earn their MBA while surrounded by thriving markets involving technology, fashion, television and movie production, real estate, and more. California is additionally home to significant business moguls and entrepreneurs, achieving 1,042,027 millionaire households as of February 2019, according to Patch Media.
A Master's in Business Administration programs, or an MBA, is designed to give students and business professionals with specific skills through classwork covering subjects like quantitative analysis and cost management. The standard MBA additionally trains future business leaders in organizational management to ensure that it's not just economic decisions they're prepared to make but also decisions around personnel and team management. So today, let's look at the Top 25 Online MBA Programs in California!
FINDING AN MBA DEGREE
MBA programs share core knowledge and curricula around economics, finance, accounting, and management. Still, they each differentiate themselves from one another by way of their unique faculty, program structure, and learning outcomes. The following Top 25 MBA Programs in California have some online component, but not all online programs are created equal.
Several California programs are available entirely online, with course material accessible 24/7 and with self-made deadlines for students, to help accommodate professionals who continue to work while they're in school. However, other MBA programs have a hybrid component, which means students are required to visit the campus for their course or degree requirements for as little as one day to as much as half of the program.
MBA students might also consider transportation and scheduling details for programs that are not right around the corner from where they live, especially in Golden State traffic. But of course, the program structure is also so important. Programs can utilize cohort structures, which means that students progress in a lock-step progression of classes with their peers.
This helps to build social and professional connections between classmates. Some MBA programs deliver more flexibility to students than others, both in terms of when students take certain classes and even which courses they take. Students who benefit from independence enjoy programs with a high number of electives or wider concentration options.
With the financial opportunities that the business world presents, it's important to find a good fit! MBA graduates increase their career earnings by as much as 59%, according to Campus Explorer. The Bureau of Labor Statistics additionally lists a wide variety of business management professions that return salaries of more than $100,000! So what are you waiting for! Check out the Top 25 MBA Programs in California and find the best fit for your exciting future career today!
RANKING THE TOP 25 ONLINE MBA PROGRAMS IN CALIFORNIA
Online MBA Today uses eight metrics to grade each school: Quality of Online Programs from U.S. News, Mid Career Pay from Payscale, Student Review Score from Rate My Professor, aggregate reputation score from other ranking sites, and Percentage of Online Programs, SAT Scores, Average Net Price, and Retention Rate from the National Center for Education Statistics. For a comprehensive breakdown of how we categorize and source data, please visit our methodology page.
#1. UNIVERSITY OF CALIFORNIA, LOS ANGELES
The University of California Los Angeles is home to a Fully Employed Master of Business Administration program, which is delivered through 80 units of coursework. The curriculum is divided between 44 core units and 36 units of electives, which are designed to take students between two and a half to three years to complete.
UCLA operates on the quarter system, with students in the program generally taking two classes per term in the summer, fall, winter, and spring. Coursework begins with courses such as Leadership Foundations, Data & Decisions, and Managerial Economics. Students have the option of completing a one-week Global Immersion or International Exchange in place of one of their elective courses. Global studies course options are available in more than 20 countries.
UCLA offers three different delivery options for its Fully Employed MBA program. Students can choose to take classes all-day Saturday, on Tuesday & Thursday evenings, or through a hybrid combination of online and on-campus study. Students in the program see an average salary increase of between 23-34% while they are in the program, as well as a 137% increase in salary 6-8 years after they have graduated from the program. Professionals in the program come from a wide range of academic and professional backgrounds. Students from the program represent over 40 different industries and are employed at more than 600 different companies.
#2. UNIVERSITY OF CALIFORNIA, IRVINE
The University of California, Irvine, has a Fully Employed Master of Business Administration program, which is designed for early to mid-career professionals in business roles. UC-Irvine's MBA curriculum includes specialization options, as well as cutting-edge research and case studies that give students practical problem-solving abilities relevant to the modern workforce.
Students complete a total of 78 units of coursework, which is designed to take students around three years to complete. Coursework begins with an opening residential experience before covering foundational topics such as organizational behavior, microeconomics, and financial reporting. Later coursework is then built around electives or a chosen area of emphasis. Available emphasis areas from the program include Accounting, Economics/Public Policy, Finance, Information Systems, and Interdisciplinary, among others.
Students in the program see an average salary growth of 35%, and 95% of students report being "highly satisfied" with the MBA program. Program start dates are available in both the fall and spring, with multiple application deadlines available for each term (three for spring, five for fall). Students are encouraged to apply during the earliest cycle possible, as decisions and fellowship awards packages are awarded within a few weeks of each deadline.
Students who apply to the program earlier also have a higher chance of receiving aid or being accepted. It is preferred that applicants have at least two years of work experience to apply to the program. Students with less than this may still apply, but the average candidate in the program has around six years of experience.
#3. UNIVERSITY OF SOUTHERN CALIFORNIA
The University of Southern California's Marshall Online Master of Business Administration program has almost exclusively online coursework, with only a one-week on-campus residency required during the program. The curriculum for the program is designed to develop students' skills in metrics, communication, and effective collaboration (primarily through virtual/remote mediums). U.S. News & World Report ranked USC's MBA program as one of their "Top Online MBA Programs" for 2019. The Princeton Review also rated the program as one of the Top 25 Online MBA Programs for 2019.
The 51 units of coursework include the on-campus intensive residency and five online courses. After completing the residency, students take a series of five courses, such as Managing Outside the Business Environment & Leadership. Portions of the course content are synchronous, but there are also two to three online class meetings per week (during the evening to accommodate working professionals).
The program's one-week residency gives students a chance to build personal and professional connections within their cohort. The residency includes intensive, collaborative coursework, as well as a good-natured consulting competition that simulates the practical application of skills students will learn throughout the MBA. Company executives are on hand to offer feedback on each team's final proposals. This experience happens during a student's first semester in the program to help form those connections with students and faculty right out of the starting blocks, making the remainder of the student's time in the program more enjoyable, productive, and community-oriented.
#4. CALIFORNIA STATE UNIVERSITY, DOMINGUEZ HILLS
California State University, Dominguez Hills, is home to a Master of Business Administration program, which can be completed in just 18 months. Students have the option of taking classes either on-campus or through the university's online learning platform. The on-campus program requires students to come to campus two times per week, while the online platform offers asynchronous content that students can access at any time.
The MBA is built around the principles of integration, teamwork, communication, and critical thinking. Classes in the online program are scheduled in 12-week intervals, and students typically take two courses per session. Students take at least seven core courses in the program (there are eight core courses available to choose from), along with three classes of electives.
In total, there are seven concentration areas for MBA students, which include Information Technology Management and Global Logistics/Supply Chain Management. Most emphasis areas have around seven-to-eight course offerings to choose from, except for International Business, which is a preset sequence of three courses.
Admission to CSUDH requires students to have a GPA of at least 2.5 cumulatively or 3.0 in their last 60 semester/90 quarter units. MBA applicants are also expected to earn a minimum score of 450 on the GMAT or a comparable score on the GRE. The most recent cohort of 15 MBA students had an average GPA of 3.06 and an average GMAT score of 486.
#5. CALIFORNIA STATE UNIVERSITY, LONG BEACH
Cal State Long Beach's online Master of Business Administration program is cohort-based and ideally designed for students who will be working full-time during their education and who are thus unable to attend in-person courses. Depending on a student's enrollment status, the degree requirements take between 21-48 months to fulfill. Students take a total of 16 courses in the program, with full-time students generally taking two courses per term (there are five terms offered each year). Courses from the program include Marketing Concepts, Managerial Accounting, Seminar in Leadership Skills, and Integrated Analysis. At the end of the program, OMBA students complete an international trip along with faculty mentors: previous trips have been to Estonia, Denmark, Germany, Italy, and Morocco.
Applications for the online program are open from October to June for Fall admission. It is preferred that applicants to the program possess at least three years of full-time work experience. Admission to CSULB graduate programs requires a minimum overall GPA of 2.75, as well as a GMAT score of 500 (4.0 essay score and 4.0 integrated reading score, as well). GRE minimum scores are 150 on both the verbal and quantitative sections, and a 4.0 on the essay section. Applicants also complete a video statement of purpose, which is uploaded to YouTube and then reviewed by the Admissions Committee. In addition to the online MBA, CSU Long Beach also has an Accelerated Full-Time MBA, as well as Evening and Saturday MBA programs.
#6. PEPPERDINE UNIVERSITY
Pepperdine University offers an online Master of Business Administration program, which includes an option for one of four concentration areas. Concentration areas available in the program include Finance, Marketing, Digital Innovation/Information Systems, and Leadership/Managing Organizational Change. Students may also choose to pursue a general track, where elective courses are drawn from a cross-section of specialty areas.
Pepperdine's MBA curriculum consists of 15 courses (52 units), which includes participation in one immersion experience in Los Angeles. The immersion allows students to deepen their skills in business ethics and leadership, as well as to work with one of Pepperdine's corporate partners, where they will learn practical applications for their business know-how. Students have previously worked with industry vanguards like Boeing, AEG, Kaiser Permanente, and Farmers Insurance.
The MBA program is accredited by the Association to Advance Collegiate Schools of Business (a distinction earned by fewer than 5% of global business schools and programs). It is designed for professionals with at least two years of full-time experience in business, but Pepperdine does value diversity in students' academic backgrounds and life experiences. Students generally take two courses at a time, along with occasionally adding one-credit seminar experiences in Leadership Development and Business Operations.
Pepperdine University was ranked as one of the 50 best universities in the country by U.S. World & News Report in 2018. Online learning students at Pepperdine have access to the LinkedIn Premium Career Center and WeWork, which is a shared working space program that connects students to shared workspaces throughout the world.
#7. CALIFORNIA STATE UNIVERSITY, STANISLAUS
California State University, Stanislaus, has an online Master of Business Administration program, which offers degree options for either a general MBA or one that comes with an emphasis in Finance. There are seven core classes and three electives required in the curriculum, for a total of 30 credit hours. Core courses include Seminar in Quality & Productivity Management, Computer Information Systems, and Marketing Management. Electives vary each term, but some of the recent elective offerings are as follows: Security Analysis & Portfolio Management, Negotiation Skills, and International Marketing.
There are also prerequisite courses that students are expected to fulfill before they may begin their MBA coursework. These prerequisites cover topics such as financial accounting, microeconomics, marketing, and management. Stanislaus also has a Saturdays-only Executive Master of Business Administration program, which is designed for mid-career professionals with significant experience, who are available to meet on-campus on weekends.
The OMBA program ends with a comprehensive examination, which is a part of the final capstone course. The comprehensive exam includes seven questions, one related to each of the core courses that a student takes in the program. Admission to the OMBA program requires students to have an undergraduate degree from a regionally accredited college or university and to have a minimum GPA of 2.5. GRE or GMAT score requirements are correlated with a student's undergraduate GPA at the time of application.
#8. CALIFORNIA STATE UNIVERSITY, SAN BERNARDINO
California State University, San Bernardino, has a 100% online Master of Business Administration program. The curriculum is designed to meet the needs of mid-career professionals with two or more years of work experience. There are no concentrations in the program, and students can finish the program in as few as 18 months.
The program begins with courses covering Advanced Managerial Communication, Data-Driven Decision-Making, and Organizational Theory & Behavior. Students eventually move on to courses on information systems and financial theory, before completing the program with the "MBA Culminating Business Analysis Project" course. In this course, students complete a written assessment designed to integrate the knowledge from their previous courses into practical applications as students prepare to return to the real world.
In total, there are 40 units of coursework, which is split up between 28 hours for core courses, eight hours for electives, and the four-hour capstone class/experience. In addition to the 18-month track, there is also a flex track available for students who need more flexibility in their time-to-graduation or their course loads for each semester/term. There are two sessions available during each term, and students can apply to begin the program during any session (including winter). Each course in the program lasts five weeks, and students generally take one course at a time (as the requirements for two courses would generally exceed feasibility for someone working full-time). GMAT and GRE scores are not required for admission to the program.
#9. CALIFORNIA BAPTIST UNIVERSITY
California Baptist University offers an online Master of Business Administration program, which can come with a specialization in either Accounting or General Management. Each of these specializations requires 36 credit hours of coursework and takes an average of 12 months to complete.
The first 21 hours of coursework covers core topics, such as the legal environment of business, organizational behavior, entrepreneurial management, and quantitative business modeling. The other 15 hours are dedicated to specialization courses, which for the general management specialization includes Managerial Ethics, Financial Management, and Global Business Management. All students in the program complete their degree with a Strategic Management course, which uses the case analysis method to teach creative problem-solving and practical applications to students.
Admission to the online MBA program requires a bachelor's degree, official sealed transcripts, and a 500-word personal statement covering a student's purpose for entering the program and long-term career goals. Applicants are also expected to have completed prerequisite courses in areas such as organizational management, business ethics, and business law.
Students without academic experience in these areas may be able to substitute related work experience. The director for the MBA program is Dr. Scott Dunbar, who earned his Doctorate in Business Administration from Liberty University in 2017. His research interests include religious coping, burnout, differentiation of self, and mindfulness. CBU also has online Masters's degree programs in Christian Leadership, Organizational Leadership, and Public Health, among others.
#10. ST. MARY'S COLLEGE OF CALIFORNIA
St. Mary's College of California has a Professional Master of Business Administration program, which requires eleven total courses. Students take eight core courses in managerial economics, quantitative methods, and ethical/social aspects of a business. Students then complete their coursework by choosing three electives related to an area of specialization, such as marketing, entrepreneurship, and more.
The MBA is designed to take students 24 months to complete, with students generally taking around two courses per term. Students can choose between three different delivery methods, including Classroom Evenings and Weekends, Online Evenings and Weekends, and Experimental. Students applying to the MBA program are required to have between 0-5 years of work experience.
Graduates from the program are now working in managerial positions at several noteworthy global organizations. Alumni currently serve in positions such as Complaints Manager at First Republic Bank, Project Manager at Ghirardelli Chocolate Company, and Marketing Manager at Peet's Coffee. The most recent cohort of students in the program was between 23-32 years of age and had a gender breakdown of 66% men and 34% women.
Depending on their undergraduate major and GPA, students may be required to submit GRE or GMAT scores for the program. Students without a quantitative-based major are generally required to submit scores, as well as students below a 2.8 GPA. Admission to the program is handled on a rolling basis, with multiple rounds/deadlines for applying.
#11. UNIVERSITY OF SAN DIEGO
The University of San Diego's Master of Business Administration can be taken as a hybrid degree program, which allows students to blend online learning and classroom experiences. Students in the hybrid program are required to come to campus one weekend per month (Saturday and Sunday), after which they complete the remainder of their coursework online.
The MBA starts with an immersive one-week orientation at USD's main campus, during which students also take their first class in the program. Overall, 40% of the program coursework is completed online, and 60% of coursework is delivered through the monthly campus meetings. The curriculum for the program includes Business Function Core classes like Financial Accounting and Economics in a Global Environment.
San Diego also has a full-time MBA program and a Professional Part-Time MBA, both of which are on-campus programs. Students who start in the Hybrid MBA program can transfer into the Professional Part-Time program once they have completed the opening immersive experience. All students begin the hybrid program during the spring semester, which makes it the only MBA program in San Diego with a January start date.
USD offers more than 15 short-term study abroad options to MBA students, as well as a 10-day international consulting project that has previously taken students to work with PetroRio in Rio de Janeiro, BMW in Munich, or Nike in Shanghai. The most recent class of Hybrid MBA students had five years of professional work experience, as well as an average student age of 29 and an average GPA of 3.1.
#12. CALIFORNIA STATE UNIVERSITY, SACRAMENTO
Cal State Sacramento has a hybrid Executive Master of Business Administration program, which is a 15-month degree that has been completed by more than 650 students since the program started in 2005. Students take a total of 41 units in the program, which includes 24 units of core courses, 12 units of electives, a 4 unit culminating experience project, and 1 unit orientation/boot camp.
The EMBA begins with the two-day orientation in Sacramento, which includes "boot camp" refresher courses that help prepare students for the rigor of the EMBA program by refreshing them on foundational material related to finance, management, and related subjects. Students complete their degree by submitting individual application projects, which are eventually delivered through an individual presentation on the final day of the program.
The average age for students entering the program is 41 years, with an age range between 24-63. Students had an average of 13.5 years of work experience, and 45% of students entering the program were female. Admission to the program is dealt with via a "portfolio approach", which takes into account students' Professional Experience, Academic Qualifications, a personal interview, and additional criteria such as community service or professional activities.
Applicants should have a bachelor's degree from an accredited institution with an overall GPA of at least 2.5. Students must also have at least three years of work experience. Students with more than ten years of valid and documented relevant and significant professional/managerial experience do not need to submit standardized test scores.
#13. BRANDMAN UNIVERSITY
Brandman University offers an online Master of Business Administration program, which can also be taken as a hybrid program. The 36 credit-hour degree includes 24 units of core courses and 12 units of electives. Core courses cover topics such as financial reporting, economic analysis for managers, business process analysis/innovation, and organizational dynamics management.
Students can choose a concentration to dedicate their elective credits towards. There are ten different options to choose from, including Finance, Health Administration, International Business, and e-Business Strategic Management. Each concentration area has four pre-selected courses that students take. For example, students pursuing a Marketing emphasis will take classes in Marketing Research, New Product Development, Advertising/Promotion, and International Marketing.
Students without an undergraduate degree in business may be required to take an additional 12 credit-hours of foundations courses before beginning their MBA coursework. There are four different GPA requirements that students can meet to qualify for admission to the program. These include earning a 3.0 GPA over the last 30 semester hours (45 quarter hours) of attempted courses or earning a 2.5-2.99 GPA over the most recent 30 semester hours (45 quarter hours) and a satisfactory score on a graduate admissions exam (GMAT, GRE, CSET, or MAT). Students can also qualify if they have earned a previous master's degree in a relevant field or submit a portfolio showcasing adequate preparation for graduate studies. These portfolios can include writing samples, letters of recommendation, or a detailed resume.
#14. UNIVERSITY OF LA VERNE
La Verne has an online Master of Business Administration program, which includes 100% online coursework delivered in a fully asynchronous format. Core classes give students a broad overview of contemporary management skills, and coursework places a specific emphasis on practical applications of skills in the day-to-day of the global business environment. Students take 12 courses (36 credit hours): eight core courses, three concentration courses, and one Graduate Business Seminar.
There are eight different concentration options for students to choose from in the program, such as Accounting, Health Services Management, Management/Leadership, and Information Technology. There are also additional concentrations that are a part of the Master of Science in Management and Leadership program, which students can also take in the MBA program. However, overlapping courses cannot count for both the core unit requirement and the concentration unit requirement.
The online MBA program does not require substantial work experience, and students from academic backgrounds outside of business are welcome to apply. The majority of faculty members who teach courses for the online MBA program also teach as part of the on-campus program at La Verne's main campus.
La Verne has been offering online/adult education to students for more than 35 years. The Online MBA program has the same admission standards as the school's MBA for Experienced Professionals. That program is designed for students with at least three years of full-time work experience. It is also offered both online, as well as several different regional locations throughout California.
#15. NATIONAL UNIVERSITY
National University's 100% online Master of Business Administration program requires 12-14 courses (54-63 quarter units). The curriculum starts with seven core competency courses in global business, supply chain systems, economics for managerial decisions, and a seminar in financial management. Students may then choose to take either four general electives from any concentration area or to pursue a four-course concentration.
National's MBA program has the following concentration options for online students: Organizational Leadership, Supply Chain Management, Bank Management, Marketing, Management Accounting, International Business, Human Resource Management, Supply Chain Management, or Financial Management. The capstone experience for the program is a Business Strategy and Policy course.
There are two foundation courses in Financial Accounting and Statistics that students must either pass or place out of. Students who have completed an undergraduate degree in business will generally qualify for waivers for both courses. Students can transfer in up to 13.5 quarter units of credit from a similarly accredited university or college. The program requirements can be completed in as little as 12 months.
Every student who enters the program is assigned a faculty mentor who helps to offer academic and professional support as a student progresses through the program. National also has tutors who are available for almost all courses, including electives. NU also has more than 170,000 alumni members, who students can connect with for networking opportunities during and after the program.
#16. NORTHCENTRAL UNIVERSITY
Northcentral University is home to an online Master of Business Administration program, which offers both an accelerated schedule option, as well as 17 different professional specializations. Students are required to complete ten courses (30 credit hours), and the recommended time to completion for the regular program is around 16 months.
MBA students can choose to specialize in unique areas, such as Criminal Justice, Health Services, Entrepreneurship, Homeland Security, or Applied Computer Science. Concentration areas require three elective course options, and each concentration generally has around seven course offerings to choose from. Samples of elective coursework would include Current Issues in Law Enforcement and Juvenile Offender from the Criminal Justice track. The credit requirements and time to completion are the same for all of the specialization areas.
Students can start the program on any Monday of the year, as students in the program have classes to themselves (thanks to asynchronous coursework and examinations). Graduates from the program have gone on to careers, including Business Analyst, Administrative Director, Director of Sales, and Business Development Manager.
Students can also pursue an accelerated version of the program, which speeds up completion time to just around one year. Students should consult with a faculty advisor to see if the course load and time sequence of the accelerated degree would be right for them. There are also special scholarships available, including $20,000 and even full-tuition scholarships, for new students.
#17. AZUSA PACIFIC UNIVERSITY
Azusa Pacific University has an online Master of Business Administration program, which requires 42-43 credit hours of coursework. Students can also choose one of eight different areas of study to specialize in, including sport management, organizational science, and institutional research. Students can access course materials at any time and should expect to spend between 6-10 hours per week per unit to succeed in their courses.
Courses in the program run on 8-week sessions, with each term being made up of two 8-week sessions. Most students complete the MBA in between 15-30 months, depending on their enrollment status. Students enrolled in at least nine units during one term are considered full-time, while students beneath this threshold are considered part-time.
Azusa Pacific University is a member of the Yellow Ribbon Fund, which offers financial aid opportunities to veterans, active-duty military members, and spouses of those who are currently on deployment. All of APU's online programs include a two-week online orientation before the program itself begins, which allows students to engage and become comfortable with the online learning/communication platforms that they'll be interacting with throughout the program.
All students in the program are required to maintain a minimum GPA of 3.0 throughout the program. In addition to the online version of the program, there are also on-campus versions of the MBA at the main Azusa campus, as well as the Inland Empire, Murrieta, and Orange County regional campuses.
#18. CALIFORNIA STATE UNIVERSITY, MONTEREY BAY
Cal State Monterey Bay is home to an online Master of Business Administration program, which can be completed under two years. Online classes in the program are capped at a maximum of 30 students. The program curriculum was recently revamped as the Responsible Business curriculum, which is designed around the themes of innovation, responsibility, and impact. Students learn not only about the ways to manage people and money, but also the way that responsible business practices can positively impact the elements of people, planet, profit, ethics, and equity. Students take 14 courses in the program, which are taken in a predetermined sequence, starting with Responsible Business Communication. Students finish the program with a Professional Development Seminar, where they will learn to promote their career by working on value clarification, goal setting, networking, resumes, and LinkedIn profiles.
Monterey Bay has also provided a $3,000 scholarship for new online MBA students to qualify for, which offsets much of their tuition for the first semester of the program. U.S. World News & Report ranked Monterey Bay's online MBA as one of the ten best regional public universities in the West. Alumni from the program have seen an average salary increase of 40% within three years of graduation. Half of all graduates from the program also receive a promotion within three years of graduating. And female alumni are four times as likely to receive a promotion as male alumni. The school's mascot is an otter, which is a subtle nod to the school's location along the south-central coast of California.
#19. HOPE INTERNATIONAL UNIVERSITY
Hope International University offers an online Master of Business Administration program. There are four options for a student's specialization in the program, including marketing and non-profit management.tudents also take four courses in their area of concentration, which can include options such as Enterprise Development and Human Resource Management. Applicants to the program are expected to have a cumulative GPA of 3.0, as well as a degree from a regionally accredited college or university. Graduates from the online MBA program have pursued career fields including entrepreneurship, marketing, retail, and finance.
There are two prerequisite courses that students must meet the requirements before beginning the MBA coursework. The two courses are Principles of Economics and Accounting/Finance. Students with an undergraduate background in business will generally be able to waive these requirements. Students who are unable to waive them will end up taking a total of 42 credit hours in the program.
All students in the program are given an Academic Coach, who helps to guide them through their coursework and professional steps necessary to take advantage of the MBA degree and their new, practical skills. Hope International also has Master's programs available in Management, as well as Education and Christian Ministry/Biblical Studies.
#20. GOLDEN GATE UNIVERSITY
Golden Gate University's Master of Business Administration can be completed online, in-person, or through a hybrid combination of both. The curriculum is designed to give students a blend of hard and soft skills in areas such as communication, management, presentations, and team-building. There are 54 units of classes required for the degree, which includes nine units of foundation courses that students may be able to waive, based on their undergraduate background.
Overall, there are 33 units of core courses, which include skills, contextual, and functional classes. Students then take 12 units in a chosen concentration area. Golden Gate has more than 13 concentration options, such as Adaptive Leadership, Human Resources, Business Analytics, and Public Administration. The capstone requirement for the program is a "Business Planning" course, which allows students to practice strategy development and implementation exercises.
Golden Gate University has a joint degree program through both the schools of business and law, which allows students to earn both their JD (Juris Doctorate) and their MBA at the same time. Golden Gate also offers a Master of Science program in Leadership. College Choice ranked Golden Gate's Online MBA program as one of the best in the State of California. 95% of students in the online MBA program are 25 years of age or older. The average class size in the program is 14 students. GGU has more than 68,000 alumni throughout the country, as well as around the world.
#21. POINT LOMA NAZARENE UNIVERSITY
Point Loma Nazarene University's Evening Master of Business Administration is a 24-month degree program, which requires 42 credit hours of coursework to complete. Students are organized in a "cohort model," which progresses them through a pre-set sequence of courses along with their peers. This allows students to be personal and professional relationships with their classmates that will help them in the program, as well as after they graduate.
Students may select from one of three concentration areas in the program: Innovation and Entrepreneurship, Project Management, and Organizational Leadership. Credits in the program are divided between 36 units of core classes and six units of elective (concentration) courses. Evening classes in the program are held Monday through Thursday. Students may accelerate the program or slow it down, depending on their needs, preferences, and schedules during a given term.
Faculty members in the program have a unique balance of academic knowledge and practical experience, which combines with small class sizes to give students in-depth mentoring opportunities. Point Loma Nazarene also has a Daytime MBA program, as well as graduate programs in Education, Christian Ministry, and Nursing, among others.
#22. CALIFORNIA LUTHERAN UNIVERSITY
Cal Lutheran is home to an online Master of Business Administration program. It is a 15 course (45 credit-hour) program, which is designed to last between 12-24 months, depending on a student's enrollment status. Online students have five eight-week terms available to them throughout the year. There are eight core courses, such as Organizational Behavior, Macroeconomics in the Global Economy, and Business Ethics/Law, which make up the first credit-hours of the program.
Professional Concentration courses makeup 12 credit-hours, and can include courses in Marketing, International Business, Information Technology, Finance, Human Capital Management, and Enterprise Innovation/Entrepreneurship. The remainder of the required credits is dedicated to prerequisite courses and the final 3-credit capstone course.
There is also an on-campus version of the program for students who are local to the Thousand Oaks or Southern California region. In-person courses are available at the main Thousand Oaks campus, as well as at regional schools in Oxnard and Woodland Hills. These can include evening courses or weekend intensives that meet the needs of students who are working full-time or who have persona commitments throughout the week.
Students may also choose to pursue a blended version of the program, which combines both face-to-face and online learning opportunities for MBA students. California Lutheran is a "veteran-friendly" school, which is why they are a part of the Yellow Ribbon Fund, which helps veterans and active-duty military members to cover expenses that the Post-9/11 GI Bill might not.
#23. TOURO UNIVERSITY WORLDWIDE
Touro University Worldwide's Online Master of Business Administration is a fully online program, which does not require students to submit GRE or GMAT scores for admission. Students can finish the program in as little as one year, and they have more than ten concentrations to choose from to go along with their core business knowledge.
There are six start dates available throughout the year, and students generally choose to take two courses per term for six consecutive terms (to graduate within a year). The curriculum requirements total of 36 credit hours, which begins with 27 credit hours of core coursework. Core courses in the program include Management Across Cultures, Professional Communications, Financial Principles & Management, and Strategy/Planning.
The final nine credits in the program are dedicated to elective/concentration courses. The concentrations offered in the program are as follows: Accounting, Artificial Intelligence, Cybersecurity, Finance, Global Management, Health Administration, Human Resources, Marketing, Non-Profit Management, and Physicians/Healthcare Executives.
Each concentration has a preset sequence of three courses that will fulfill the elective credit requirement. For example, the AI concentration has classes on Introduction to AI, Machine Learning/Robotics in Business, and Special Topics in Artificial Intelligence Business. Touro is a non-profit institution that looks to serve all students and provide a wide variety of educational opportunities. So Touro recently decided that students should have their application fee to the program automatically waived.
#24. CALIFORNIA STATE UNIVERSITY, FRESNO
Fresno State's online Master of Business Administration can be taken as either a hybrid, online, or on-campus degree program. Students take a total of 51 units worth of classes in the program. This includes a sequence of 15 prerequisite courses, in which students with an undergraduate background in business or a related field are often able to waive.
Fresno State's Online MBA is accredited by the Association for the Advancement of Collegiate Schools of Business, which is a distinction earned by only 5% of business schools worldwide. All coursework can be completed online, with only small exceptions for the introductory orientation, selected final exams, and the final presentation for the student's culminating experience.
Students use the Blackboard Learning System as their primary software for accessing course materials and engaging with their peers/professors through discussion posts and direct messaging. Students can choose to participate in an optional Summer Study Abroad Program. Graduate courses in the program are currently taught in Sydney, Australia. Courses from the study abroad include International Business and Seminar in Comparative – Human Resource and Industrial Relations Systems.
#25. CALIFORNIA COAST UNIVERSITY
California Coast University has an online Master of Business Administration program, which is a self-paced degree that students can complete 100% online. Coursework in the program is not structured in semesters, quarters, or terms, and students can start their classes at any point during the year. However, some employers require students to complete courses on a per-term basis. This is also sometimes the case for military students.
Overall, there are 13 core courses and a final examination in the program, and students do not take electives or earn a concentration. The core courses include Human Resource Management, Business Law, Leadership, E-Commerce Management, and The Research Process. The Final Comprehensive Examination that students take to finish the degree is a Pass/No pass exam.
The Final Comprehensive Examination is a combination of essay, short-answer, and multiple-choice questions, which require students to integrate the knowledge from all of their previous courses. Students can repeat portions of the exam that they do not pass until they receive a passing score.
Applicants are required to have completed a bachelor's degree from a college or university that has been recognized by the United States Department of Education. It is recommended that students have a degree in business administration, leadership, management, or marketing. Students with academic backgrounds outside of these fields will be considered by the committee, with the expectation that they have the necessary foundational knowledge to succeed in the program.