A Master's in Business Administration, or MBA, is a well-known type of degree program. Many people have either considered getting an MBA or know someone who has chosen to take the plunge into graduate-level business study. Graduates from MBA program pursue management and leadership roles with firms dealing with myriad different topics. Students can choose to focus on finance, human resources, accounting, international business, or a host of other business niches! In this ranking, we're specifically looking at degree programs that help to accommodate working professionals who are looking to turn their real-world experience into something more. If California were a country, it's economic output would make it one of the ten largest economies in the world and business hubs like Silicon Valley or Los Angeles make it one of the perfect places for doing or learning about business. So let's take a look at the 30 Best Online MBAs in California!
FINDING AN MBA DEGREE
There are a number of MBA programs, each of which has a unique curriculum and cohort tailored toward particular professional outcomes. Certain programs emphasize the management and administration aspects of business through concentrations such as Organizational Management or Human Resources Administration. But this is not the only side of the business world, as in the modern area it can also be valuable to have managers with specific training in data, finance, and analysis. Programs are also differentiated by the experience that students may be expected to bring to the program. Some MBAs are intended for working professionals early in their career or those who have recently graduated from their bachelor's program. Other programs, such as Executive MBA programs, require around 10 years of experience in their given field.
The variance in programs and curriculum means that students have a wide range of career paths and schedules that they can choose to pursue. Some programs even offer a mixture of online and on-campus experiences that allow students to "double dip" on the benefits of traditional and online education. Students meet on-campus with faculty and cohort members, with whom they are then able to build personal and professional relationships that carry them through the program and beyond. However, there are also a number of fully online programs that give students unbridled flexibility for where and when they complete coursework, exams, and one-on-one interactions with professors. This flexibility allows students to not only maintain robust personal and professional lives but also gives them personalized attention that makes their education truly resonate.
RANKING THE 30 BEST ONLINE MBA DEGREES 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 a public university located in Los Angeles, CA. UCLA offers a hybrid on-campus and online flexible Master of Business Administration program. The program is tailored to working professionals who've shown interest in the UCLA MBA program but cannot visit campus every week or are not local to the Los Angeles area. Students visit campus for one weekend every three weeks and take a total of 80 units of study. The degree plan is designed for students to graduate in two and a half to three years. Students begin with core courses including Leadership Foundations and Data & Decisions, before progressing to their elective and specialization courses.
UCLA offers six different specializations for the MBA degree program: consulting, finance, marketing, management, real estate, and entrepreneurship. A number of these specializations also have sub-specialties for students looking to further focus their graduate studies. For example, the finance specialization includes options where students can focus on investment banking and management, corporate finance, or venture capital and private equity. The average student entering the program has around seven years of full-time work experience but students of all academic and professional backgrounds are welcome to apply. The most recently admitted class of students included roughly 70 percent men and 30 percent women, with eight percent of all students coming from underrepresented minority groups. Students ranged in age from 23 to 45, with an average age of 30 years old.
#2. University of California – Irvine
The University of California, Irvine is a public university located in Irvine, CA. UCI offers a Fully Employed Master of Business Administration program, which is offered in a hybrid, work-friendly format and is designed for early-to-mid-level professionals. The FEMBA program is made up of 19 courses, which can be completed in around 33 months without summer quarters, or in 24-27 months if students take courses during the summer. The hybrid program allows students to access lectures online, which comprises roughly 60% of the curriculum. Students attend in-person on-campus courses during four Saturdays per quarter. Online electives may be available throughout a student's degree program if schedules permit.
Students who wish to pursue the hybrid version of the program must apply and be accepted for admission during the Fall. Core courses at the beginning of the program include Statistics for Managers, Marketing for Managers, and Microeconomics for Managers. Students then proceed to take a number of elective courses, as well as upper-level management courses such as Competing with Digital and Executive Leadership. Three of the courses in the program are off-site residential courses, which seek to give real-world experiences to students. The second-year experience takes place at an international business location, with previous trips having been taken to locations such as South America, Europe, and Asia. The closing residential course, Executive Leadership, takes place at a mountain retreat conference center, where students work together to form their long-term career plans.
#3. University of Southern California
The University of Southern California is a private university located in Los Angeles, CA. USC offers an Online Master of Business Administration program which includes 51 units of study through six courses. The sequence begins with the introductory course Role of a Manager, before progressing through higher level courses such as Managing Outside the Firm and Business Environment and Leadership. The program is made to be as flexible as possible, namely by allowing students to watch video presentations, moderate discussion boards, and complete case studies asynchronously. However, the program also keeps class meetings, collaborative activities, and one-on-one meetings with faculty well synchronized, so that students have maximum support as they advance through the program with their classmates.
As part of their emphasis on building connections within cohorts, USC includes a one-week residency as a part of the OMBA program. The residency occurs as the students are completing their first online course so that students can connect with peers and faculty right at the onset of their program, and maximize those resources throughout their course of study. The online course meetings take place two to three times per week and last between one and two hours. The course schedules are designed to accommodate working professionals, as courses are scheduled during evening and weekend time blocks. Students are required to have a minimum of two years work experience to apply to the program and are required to submit an official score report from either the GMAT or GRE.
#4. California State University, Dominguez Hills
California State University, Dominguez Hills is a public university located in Dominguez Hills, CA. Dominguez Hills offers an online Master's in Business Administration program, which is composed of 30-semester units of study, divided between 21 units of core coursework and nine to 12 units of elective coursework. There are eight available specialties in the program, such as human resource management, international business, global logistics, and supply chain management. Core courses begin by focusing on introductory management techniques, as seen through the lens of marketing or strategic management. Elective courses then advance into topics such as international business or advanced accounting. In addition to the online MBA program, there are also MBA certificate programs available in Logistics Management and Marketing.
Forbes has recognized the online MBA program at Dominguez Hills as one of the top 20 cyber universities in the country. The program has also been cited by CNN Money as one of the most affordable and robust curriculums in the country. Applicants to the program are not required to possess any full-time work experience, and they are not required to hold a degree in any specific major or field. Applicants must have obtained a minimum GPA of 3.0 in their final 60-semester units of study. They must also obtain a minimum score of 450 on the GMAT or be in at least the 25th percentile on the verbal and quantitative sections of the GRE.
#5. California State University, Long Beach
California State University, Long Beach is a public university located in Long Beach, CA. Long Beach offers an online Master of Business Administration program, which is referred to as a cohort-based program intended to last around 21 months. Coursework begins with introductory financial accounting and financial management courses. Later coursework includes seminars in Marketing Policies, Leadership Skills, and Investment. The final two courses that students complete, normally in the spring semester of their second year, are an MBA International Experience seminar and an Integrated Analysis course. Each of these are courses are intended to wrap up the degree by allowing students real-world practice with business problem-solving. Destinations for the international trip have included locations such as Milan, Tallinn, Lisbon, Casablanca, Madrid, and Copenhagen.
Part of the program's cohort focus revolves around group work, this involves students meeting digitally for group projects, study sessions, and course work. Online students are welcome to attend on-campus mixers and networking events that are available for traditional MBA students. The networking team also puts on virtual networking events for online MBA students who can then meet alumni and guest speakers, or watch panel discussions through the virtual medium. Applicants to the program are required to submit a video statement of purpose, which helps to highlight the student's main accomplishments and future career plans after the MBA. Students may also request an ADA-compliant format for the statement of purpose if need be.
#6. Pepperdine University
Pepperdine University is a private university located in Malibu, CA. Pepperdine offers an online Master of Business Administration which includes 52 units of study divided between 15 courses and 2 immersions. Immersions are courses intended to examine business ethics and develop leadership skills, often completed in collaboration with corporate partners such as Boeing or Farmer's Insurance. The personal development and leadership workshop is a part of the student's first semester of classes, and pairs with early courses such as Behavior in Organization and Quantitative Analysis for Business Operations. Students then complete the program with higher-level electives such as Political, Regulatory, Ethical, and Legal Issues of Business and Strategic Management.
Pepperdine is a private university affiliated with the Churches of Christ congregation. Its online MBA program can be completed in as few as 20 months. Immersion experiences are held on-campus and are a required part of the online MBA curriculum. The curriculum also includes the options for students to choose from one of five specializations: General, Finance, Marketing, Digital Innovation and Information Systems, as well as Leadership and Managing Organizational Change. The program is designed for students who have at least two years of relevant work experience, and so this is a requirement for admission. Students must also submit GRE/GMAT scores. Students from diverse academic backgrounds and life experiences are invited to apply, and the program has start dates in both fall and spring.
#7. Stanislaus State
Stanislaus State is a public university located in Stanislaus, CA. Stanislaus offers a Master's in Business Administration program, which includes 10 courses that total to 30 units of study. Students begin the program by taking courses in accounting and computer information systems. Later courses focus on marketing management and quality and productivity management. Students also choose three elective courses and then complete their course of study with a comprehensive exam, which serves as their culminating experience for the program. The degree program also has options for areas of focus that a student may choose to pursue. There are two available areas of study: Finance and General. Students fulfill the requirements for these focuses by choosing the appropriate elective courses.
Applicants to the program are required to have an undergraduate degree from an accredited institution and a minimum GPA of 2.5 in their final 60-semester units attended. Non-business or related majors are welcome to apply, however, those without a foundational background in business and economics will be required to complete foundation courses in Introductory Economics, Finance, and Business before beginning the master's program courses. The comprehensive exam that students take to complete the degree is composed of seven questions, one from each of the core courses. The comprehensive exam is offered once each semester, and students are eligible to retake the exam at the beginning of the semester each time it is offered.
#8. California State University, San Bernardino
California State University, San Bernardino is a public university located in San Bernardino, CA. CSUSB offers a Masters of Business Administration program through its online learning service. The standard online program takes 18 months to complete but the school also offers a FLEX track where students can choose their own pace and set their own degree completion goal. The first courses in the sequence look to build on a student's managerial experience with courses such as Advanced Managerial Communication and Entrepreneurship and New Ventures. The next semesters then focus on data-driven decision-making and supply chain management, before students then complete the program with a 10-week MBA portfolio course. The portfolio course is taken simultaneously with a business analysis project course.
The normal course schedule for the program includes taking courses during the summer term. These summer courses are divided between two different sessions, during which students take a total of three courses, similar to the fall and spring semesters. Applicants are required to have a minimum of five years of managerial or leadership experience for admission into the program. San Bernardino's program has appeared in a number of different rankings, including the Best for Vets ranking from Military Times and CEO Magazine's Top 20 M.B.A. Programs for three consecutive years. Students who refer other students to the program can receive tuition discounts for certain courses that can save them hundreds of dollars.
#9. California Baptist University
California Baptist University is a private university located in Riverside, CA. CBU offers a Fully Employed Master of Business Administration degree program. The online degree can be taken with an emphasis in either General Management or Accounting. Both tracks of the program require 36 units of study to be completed, with the average student completing the requisite courses in 12 months. The 12-month completion time is dependent upon students taking a course through the summer semester. Courses in the program are divided between 21 units of business core such as Marketing Management and Economic Analysis for the Changing Business Environment. The final 15 credits (five courses) are then drawn from the student's area of specialization.
Both programs require a bachelor's degree in any subject, but students must also be able to demonstrate fundamental knowledge of key business or economic concepts. Courses from within each specialization include Taxation for Business Entities and Financial Management for the accounting track. Students in the general management track take courses such as Financial Management and Global Business Management. California Baptist University is a Christian university, specifically associated with the California Southern Baptist Convention, which is a part of the larger Southern Baptist Convention. California Baptist is a Yellow Ribbon Military Friendly School and offers a number of grants, scholarships, veterans benefits, employer tuition assistance, and financing plans to help students afford their education.
#10. St. Mary's College of California
St. Mary's College of California is a private college located in Moraga, CA. St. Mary's offers a Professional Master of Business Administration program which is intended for business professionals looking to pursue advancement through leadership roles. The curriculum includes 18 courses, 7 of which can be waived, and students generally complete the program in around 24 months. Students take 2 classes per quarter and have the option of choosing their learning environment. Classes are taken during nights and weekends, with students opting to either complete the courses on-campus or online. Core courses include Global Business Strategy and International Business. Students may transfer in up to eight quarter-units of credit into the program, which would count toward the program core.
In addition to the program's core courses students also select elective courses which can either be put toward a General Management degree or used in pursuit of a concentration. In the program, students may choose from the following concentrations: finance, marketing, business analytics, international management, or entrepreneurship. The maximum class size for the program is 15 students. The class profile from the most recent class of students includes an average age of between 23-32, with a gender breakdown of 66 percent male and 34 percent female. Students are not required to have any particular amount of professional work experience to enter into the program, on average most students have anywhere from less than a year to up to five years of experience. St. Mary's is a Roman Catholic University administered by the De La Salle Christian Brothers.
#11. University of San Diego
The University of San Diego is a private university located in San Diego, CA. USD offers a Professional Part-time Master of Business Administration program. The part-time program can either be taken in an evening or hybrid format. In the hybrid format, students have on-campus weekend classes once a month, with the remainder of classes then being completed online. The degree program requires the completion of 53 units of study, at least 31 of which are dedicated to core courses and the other 22 coming from electives. Core courses include Marketing for Global Managers, Financial Management and Analysis, and Economics in a Global Environment. Later on in the program students take courses in integrated problem solving, such as Agile Strategies and Problem Formulation and Decision Analysis.
The MBA program has eight different specializations that students may choose to pursue, with options including finance and entrepreneurship. San Diego is a Roman Catholic university and originally began in 1949 as the San Diego College for Women. Students may choose to take up to six units of elective coursework outside of the school of business, such as courses at the USD School of Law. San Diego's John Ahlers Center for International Business sponsors study-abroad experiences that students may also complete their elective requirements with. San Diego has a number of partner universities that help to offer the myriad of different possible international opportunities. USD also has a Career Services team that works with each individual during the program and after graduation to help secure employment and other professional opportunities.
#12. California State University, Sacramento
California State University, Sacramento is a public university located in Sacramento, CA. Sacramento offers a Master of Business Administration program which may be completed in as few as two years if taken full-time. Courses are offered on-campus during nights and weekends to accommodate professional work schedules. The course sequence is divided into a four-part progression, once students have shown the recommended proficiencies. The progression goes from Foundation Courses to Program Requirements to Concentration/Elective courses, before finishing with the Culminating Experience. For the Culminating Experience, students choose between a thesis, final project, or taking the course MBA 501- Advanced Strategic Management. The final three parts of the course sequence include 11 classes, while the Recommended Proficiencies and Foundation courses may vary based on a student's prior experience/knowledge.
There are four different specialization areas that students may choose to dedicate their elective courses toward such as General Program, Finance, Business Analytics in Healthcare, and Entrepreneurship and Global Business. Applicants to the program are required to have a minimum GPA of 2.5 on a 4.0 scale, as well as to submit GRE or GMAT scores. Students with significant professional experience (between five and 10 years) are given more leniency in regards to the standardized tests scores. Applicants with more than ten years of work experience may have the standardized test score requirement waived for their application. Recommended proficiencies of the program include statistics, mathematics, and computer usage. The technology proficiencies specifically refers to calculus, word processing, and spreadsheet program experience.
#13. Brandman University
Brandman University is a private university based in Irvine, CA. Brandman has a Master of Business Administration program that is available in a hybrid or fully online format. The program includes 36-48 units of study, depending upon if students receive course waivers for certain fundamental courses. These initial courses include topics such as human resources foundations, leading organizational change, and economic analysis for managers. These core courses take up 24-36 units of the program requirements, with the final 12 units dedicated to either elective or emphasis courses. The Brandman program offers ten different emphases that students can choose from, each of which includes four elective courses from within the emphasis. The program ends with a Business Strategy and Competitive Advantage Capstone course, which is the final course in the program core.
Brandman University is a part of the Chapman University system, with Brandman itself having more than 25 campuses throughout California and Washington. Brandman offers a number of flexible admissions options including four GPA options that students can choose to meet. The school does not require graduate level exam scores from the GRE or GMAT. The areas of emphasis available for study include Accounting, Entrepreneurship, Finance, Health Administration, Human Resources, International Business, Organizational Leadership, Marketing, e-Business Strategic Management, and Business Intelligence and Data Analytics. Each specialty has four unique courses, such as the Marketing emphasis, which offers International Marketing and New Product Development courses, among others.
#14. University of La Verne
The University of La Verne is a private university in La Verne, CA. La Verne Online has a Master of Business Administration program that seeks to offer adult learners the opportunity to earn an MBA through a convenient and flexible avenue. The MBA curriculum covers 36 units (12 courses) of study, which is divided between eight core courses, three concentration courses, and the final graduate business seminar. Core courses include Financial Management and Economics of the Firm. Students then choose from a list of eight available concentrations, which include options such as Accounting, Finance, International Business, and Supply Chain Management.
The program is generally tailored toward individuals with at least three years of professional work experience. In addition to the concentrations offered for the MBA specifically, students may also pursue any concentration in the Master of Science in Leadership and Management concentration. Students who graduate from the MBA program may return at a later date to a new or second concentration to their transcript. Students who would like more information about this process may consult an academic advisor about any time limits that may apply, or other parts of the process. Other available concentrations for the MBA program include Information Technology and Health Services Management.
#15. National University
National University is a private university located in La Jolla, CA. National has a Master of Business Administration degree program, which requires 63 quarter units of graduate credit. Eight Core courses make up the first 36 quarter units of study, with courses concerning Marketing Management and Statistics for Business. Later courses include Managerial Accounting and Economics for Managerial Decisions. The final courses in the program are a pair of capstone courses where students apply and integrate all of the knowledge they have gained through the program. These two courses are Business Strategy and Policy and Capstone. The curriculum also includes options for a number of general electives, such as Business Simulation and Strategic Decision Systems.
Students may transfer in up to 13.5 quarter units of equivalent graduate work. The program offers several areas of specialization that a student may choose to pursue: Accounting, Financial Management, Human Resource Management, Marketing, International Business, Management Accounting, Mobile Marketing, Social Media, Organizational Leadership, and Supply Chain Management. Classes last four weeks, which allows students to focus on one course and thus one subject at a time. National is a Yellow Ribbon friendly school, offering tuition discounts to service members and dependents. And in addition to their online offerings, it also has more than 20 different campus locations across California, for students who wish to pursue on-campus education or who would like to access some of the resources offered at these locations.
#16. Northcentral University
Northcentral University is an online university with its administrative headquarters located in San Diego, CA and a Service Center located in Scottsdale, AZ. NCU has a Master of Business Administration program requiring 10 courses for a total of 30 credit hours. NCU recommends that students aim to complete the program over the course of 16-months. The program offers 17 different professional specializations for students to choose from, including options such as Criminal Justice, Public Administration, and Financial Management. Courses from the program include Managing People and Teams, Operations Management, Strategic Planning, and Changing Times – Business in the 21st Century. One hundred percent of the faculty members teaching in the program have a doctoral degree
Northcentral University's program has available start dates for every week of each year, meaning that students have 52 options each year for when they would like to begin their MBA program. NCU's MBA program has no GMAT or GRE requirement for admission. In addition to their 16-month traditional online program, NCU also offers an accelerated schedule option that would allow a student to complete the program in as little as one year. The final course in the program is a competitive capstone course that allows the student to test their knowledge in a virtual environment that simulates the real-world challenges they will face after graduation. Additional specializations available to students include Project Management, Healthcare Administration, and Homeland Security.
#17. Azusa Pacific University
Azusa Pacific University is a private university located in Azusa, CA. APU has a Master of Business Administration program that requires students to complete 42 units of study. Most students choose to take two classes per term, which leads to degree completion in between 15-30 months. Coursework from the MBA program includes core courses covering topics such as Global Business Management, Strategic Management, and Corporate Finance. Students then choose from one of eight specialized areas of study, including Sports Management, Finance, Marketing, and Institutional Research. Each of these specializations then has its own track of elective courses that students will follow such as Athletics and Law or Facility and Event Management for the Sports Management track.
Azusa Pacific is an evangelical Christian university. It is an interdenominational Christian university with a Graduate School of Theology holding to the Wesleyan-Arminian doctrinal theology. Students may choose their own pace for completion, but the School of Business and Management does require the completion of the graduate degree requirements within five years of initial enrollment. The application deadline for any given session is approximately four weeks before that session is scheduled to begin. Azusa suggests that while the program does not require students to be online for a specific amount of time, they should expect to be online for 6-10 hours per week. All Azusa online programs include a two-week orientation before the beginning of the first class so that students have a chance to orient themselves in the online learning environment before beginning classes.
#18. California State University, Monterey Bay
California State University, Monterey Bay is a public university located in Monterey Bay, CA. CSUMB has a Master of Business Administration program that requires 38 units of study. It is a fixed-curriculum graduate degree program where no two courses are alike. Students take courses such as Responsible Business Communication, Information Systems and Business Analytics, Business Strategy and Entrepreneurship, and Global Sustainable Business. The lessons in each course focus on a mixture of soft skills, such as leadership, teamwork, ethics, networking, and politics, as well as hard skills such as economics, finance, marketing, and management. Students work with their cohort to meld these two important skill sets. Having small class sizes encourages and sparks students to communicate their ideas and develop them.
CSUMB does not require students to submit GRE or GMAT scores to apply for the program. Monterey Bay recently received $8 million in innovation grants because it tries to make innovation a key part of all of the programs that it offers. Start times are available three times a year in January, May, and August. Online classes are capped at a 30 student total to ensure that every student receives the individualized and personal attention they need to maximize their potential in the program. Students in the program practice with real-time case studies to keep the information that they learn dynamic and applicable so that they are highly qualified and ready to act in the job market after graduation.
#19. Hope International University
Hope International University is a private university located in Fullerton, CA. Hope International has a Master of Business Administration program that requires students to complete 36 units of study for the degree, or up to 42 units if prerequisite courses are required. Prerequisites may be required for students who do not have an undergraduate background in economics, finance, or business. Students who meet the prerequisites may then take major core courses such as Researching Business Solutions and Strategic Management and Planning. Students then choose from one of the four available specializations: General Management, Marketing Management, Non-Profit Management, or a Customized Concentration. The final course in the curriculum is either a synthesis paper course or a capstone project. Students have the option of choosing either of these to fulfill the graduation requirement.
Hope International is a Christian university. It identifies as non-denominational, though it does have strong relationships with the Restoration Movement and the Christian churches and churches of Christ. The President of Hope International University, who also teaches courses in the MBA program, is John Derry. Other professors in the program hold degrees including Doctorates of Business Administration or even a Juris Doctorate, or law degree. In addition to the faculty members supporting the program, the College of Business also employs a number of academic coaches who work with students to ensure that their academic and professional developments are maximized through the program. Hope International emphasizes the Servant Leadership mentality in its curriculum, which means putting the needs of others, the community, and the world ahead of oneself.
#20. Golden Gate University
Golden Gate University is a private university located in San Francisco, CA. GGU offers a Master of Business Administration program which is an accelerated program intended for experienced professionals. Students can complete the program in as few as 16 months. The format of the program is a mixture of in-class and online learning and includes the chance to earn a concentration in one of four subject areas. Available concentrations include Data Analytics, Human Resources Management, and Finance. Faculty members in the program are often actively working in the field that they are teaching about which gives student current, real-world insight into the business world that they will be stepping into after graduation.
In addition to the MBA program itself, Golden Gate also has an Executive Master of Business Administration program. This is also a 16-month program and is intended for well-seasoned business professionals who would bring around ten years of business experience into the program with them. Golden Gate University also has a Joint JB/MBA program, where students can earn degrees in business and law concurrently. GGU attempts to keep class sizes small with low student-to-teacher ratios. GGU also offers one-on-one career advising for each of their graduate students as well as a number of different scholarships and merit-based aid intended to help students afford their MBA education more easily.
#21. Point Loma Nazarene University
Point Loma Nazarene University is a liberal arts college located near San Diego, CA. Point Loma has an online Master of Business Administration program consisting of 42 units of study. Most students require 24 months to complete the program. Core courses within the program include Accounting for Decision Making, Applied Research Methods, and Marketing Management. Point Loma's signature courses are part of a series called "Leading with Integrity". This series focuses on not just the information and knowledge of business but also challenges students to delve deeper into the topics of Character, Service, and Purpose within their programs. Each of these topics gets their own course in the series, and it is the defining and unique feature of the Point Loma MBA program.
Point Loma is one of eight liberal arts colleges associated with the Church of the Nazarene. In addition to the solely online program, Point Loma also has Daytime and Evening MBA programs, which require the same number of credits, but which can decrease the time to graduation. Start dates for the Online MBA program are available for the fall and spring semesters. Students bring a wide range of experiences and identities into the program. The average age of an online MBA student is 32 and students bring between four and over 25 years of working experience into the program. 43 percent of online MBA students are female and class sizes tend to have 15-20 students each in them.
#22. California Lutheran University
California Lutheran University is a private college located in Thousand Oaks, CA. California Lutheran offers a Master of Business Administration program that lasts between 12-24 months for most students. The program requirements include 45 credit hours of study which can be completed online, on-campus, or through a hybrid format. The 15 courses required for the program are broken down between eight core courses, two emphasis courses, four elective courses, and one capstone course. Emphases available in the program include Enterprise Innovation and Entrepreneurship, Finance, Human Capital Management, and Marketing. These emphases are also referred to as Professional Tracks, as the school attempts to prepare students with specific skills associated with professions they are interested in pursuing.
Online courses are divided into five eight-week terms throughout the year. There are also Professional Tracks available for Information Technology and International Business. Students may also take six emphasis courses for a General MBA concentration. Students pursuing their online MBA option will graduate with the general MBA concentration as the Professional Track concentrations are limited to on-campus students. Students have a number of options from which to choose for their capstone courses which can include an Internship, Business Roundtable, MBA Project, International Travel, or Consulting to Business. Applications are welcome from students representing a diverse range of academic backgrounds. However, students whose academic record reflects the need for academic preparation in business may be required to take foundation courses in economics, accounting, and business statistics.
#23. Touro University Worldwide
Touro University Worldwide is a private, online university based out of Los Alamitos, CA. Touro has a Master of Business Administration program. The curriculum includes nine core courses, as well as three concentration courses and a capstone course, for a total of 36 units. There are nine available concentrations which are aimed at specifying student goals and bringing their education as closely in line with their career aspirations as possible. Available concentrations include Artificial Intelligence, Cybersecurity Management, Human Resource Management, and Nonprofit Management. The degree program can be finished in as few as 12 months if students take two courses per term for six consecutive terms.
Applicants to the program should have a baccalaureate degree from an accredited institution and have earned a minimum GPA of 2.5 on a 4.0 scale. Additional concentrations available in the program include Physicians and Healthcare Executives, Global Management, Cybersecurity Management, and Finance. Touro waives the $60 application fee for all prospective students. There are six different starts dates and terms available throughout the year for new or continuing students. Applicants are not required to submit either GRE or GMAT scores as a part of the application process. Touro offers a number of scholarship and student loan options for students who are concerned about their ability to finance their MBA program, and they also employ tuition assistance counselors to help students determine their eligibility for financial aid and other assistance.
#24. California State University, Fresno
California State University, Fresno is a public university located in Fresno, CA. Cal State Fresno offers a Master of Business Administration program which is delivered in either online, in person, or blended formats. It is a 36-unit program which is divided between 18 units of core courses, 12 units of general management electives, and six units of the student's culminating experience. For the culminating experience, students choose between a team or individual management project or a thesis. Students who choose to take the management project course, as a team or an individual, must take one additional elective course. Students taking the thesis course must take a course in research methodology.
Students can take courses in different formats during the same semester. For instance, taking Accounting and Information Systems online, while taking Methods of Decision Sciences on-campus. Students may take all courses online, though there are a few program requirements that must be completed in person. These requirements include an orientation, selected final exams, and the final culminating experience presentations, given either on a final project or the student's original thesis. Cal State Fresno does have approved testing locations and Respondus prepared to bridge geographic barriers that might otherwise prevent a student from completing certain requirements. Students in the program have the option of participating in a Summer Study Abroad Program during the summer. The primary mode of delivery for course content is the Blackboard Learning System.
#25. Ashford University
Ashford University is an online, for-profit university based out of San Diego, CA. Ashford has a Master of Business Administration program which requires 42 credits of coursework. The coursework is divided between 33 core courses and credit of specialized courses. Courses cover topics including Business, Information Systems, and Mathematics through courses such as Financial Accounting & Analysis, Management of Information Systems, Statistical Concepts for Research. Ashford also offers fourteen different specialization options that students can add on to the core courses in the program. Specializations include topics such as Media Management, Finance, and Business Economics. There are prerequisite requirements in statistics and business coursework that students may be required to take if they did not successfully do so during their undergraduate career.
Applicants to the program are not required to take or report scores for the GRE or the GMAT exam. The Ashford business school offers a number of scholarships to help make the MBA education more affordable for some students. Courses last six weeks each and students take only one course at a time to ensure they are able to completely focus and absorb the information from each subject. Additional specializations offered in the program include Environmental Management, Global Management, and Public Administration. The online MBA program includes 24/7 access to live classroom support services and Ashford students receive free access to Microsoft Office 365 without a subscription.
#26. Naval Postgraduate School
The Naval Postgraduate School is a public graduate school located in Monterey, CA. The school is operated by the United States Navy. It offers two Executive Master of Business Administration programs, one of which is intended for military members and the other of which is intended for civilians. The program is a 24-month, part-time distance learning program. Students enter the program as a cohort, with a class size of around 25 students, which are then broken up into smaller student teams. There is one class per week with students expected to devote six to seven hours to regular CONUS duty hours. The program begins with a one-week required residency at the NPS campus in Monterey. There is then the second week which is comprised of resident instruction that takes place during the second year. All other program requirements are completed from students' home locations.
The civilian program is not open to the public but is instead intended for U.S. Government civilians, namely senior employees from federal agencies outside of the Department of Defense. Classes meet during work hours on Navy time, so active-duty students must have the full support of their Commanding Officers before being admitted to the program. The EMBA program curriculum begins with fundamental courses such as Cost Management, Management of Teams, as well as Ethics and Moral Development. Later courses in the program include Defense Financial Management Practice, Managing Strategic Change, and a two-part Collaborative Problem-Solving course. Overall the program is typically divided between eight quarters, each of which includes two courses.
#27. California College San Diego
California College San Diego is a private liberal arts college located in San Diego, CA. California College SD has two Master of Business Administration programs, the general emphasis, and an entrepreneurial emphasis. The program lasts for 15-months and requires the completion of 60 total credits. Students begin with introductory courses including Financial Accounting for Management, Dynamics of the Organization, Corporate Finance, and Information Technology and Society. Students complete the program with a Capstone course in their final semester. That final semester includes other advanced courses, such as Advanced Human Resource Management and Operations Management. These courses look to provide students with a number of hard and soft skills, including personal and professional communication skills, and skills relating to economic analysis.
California College San Diego is affiliated with the Center for Excellence in Higher Education, which is a non-profit organization based in Indiana. California College's online services and programs sometimes appear under the domain name or as a part of the online learning service referred to as Independence University. Independence University offers a number of personalized services for their distance learning students. These include live tutoring, writing, and math labs, Career Services, externship placement, and tech support. The program minimizes the number of elective courses that students are required to take so that their knowledge and degree program are as tightly paired with their career goals as possible.
#28. Trident University International
Trident University International is a for-profit, online university. Trident offers a Master of Business Administration degree program, which includes up to 48-credit hours of coursework. The coursework is divided between 36-credit hours of core courses and then 12-credit hours of elective courses. Trident University offers eight different concentration options which then guide a student's elective coursework choices. Concentrations are available in Human Resources Management, Safety Management, and Strategic Leadership. Students are not required to complete a concentration as a part of the program however without a concentration the course requirement decreases to 36 credit hours. Courses from the program cover a range of topics including Business Analytics, Decision Making, Strategic Management, and Business Ethics.
More than 80 percent of the faculty members in the MBA program have doctoral degrees. Students who have a bachelor's degree in Business Administration may be able to waive an elective course which would decrease their credit requirement to 44-credit hours. Applicants to the program should have a demonstrated proficiency in accounting and marketing, which are considered foundational competencies for the program. Students are not required to submit scores from the GRE, MAT, or GMAT exams. Applicants should have a minimum undergraduate GPA of 2.5 on a 4.0 scale. Students may transfer in up to 30 percent of their graduate-level credits into any given master's program. All transfer course credits must come from courses where the student earned at least a 3.0 or better.
#29. California Intercontinental University
California Intercontinental University is an online, for-profit university located in Irvine, CA. CIU has a Master of Business Administration program that is designed for students with general business knowledge and seeks to help students apply that knowledge in an increasingly tech-driven world. Students generally complete the program in around two years as their courses are divided between four semesters of three courses each for a total of 36-credit hours. Introductory courses such as Marketing and Organizational Development begin the program. Students then progress to higher level courses such as Project Management for Professionals and Strategic Management and Competitive Globalization. The final four courses, including the entirety of the students last semester, are comprised of electives taken from the list of specialization courses.
Students are not required to submit GRE or GMAT scores as a part of the admissions process. The only requirements are a Bachelor's degree or its equivalent, as well as a CV or resume. The program has a wide range of specialization options that students may choose from, including Banking and Finance, Healthcare Management, Project and Quality Management, Information Systems and Knowledge Management, International Management and Marketing, and Organizational Development. CIU utilizes e-textbooks in a large number of their classes which helps to lower costs for students. CIU also offers financial aid and financing options that are available through the school.
#30. Santa Clara University
Santa Clara University is a private university located in Santa Clara, CA. Santa Clara has an online Master in Business Administration program which includes 70 units of study. The coursework is broken down between 42 units of core courses, 26 units of free electives, and two units dedicated toward "Challenges" in electives. The challenge course must be taken during a student's final two-quarters of study and is designed to help increase the tactical and strategic understanding of developing leaders in the program. Students practice how to initiate and execute strategic changes at the administrative level. Elective courses available in the program include Investments, FinTech, Strategic Talent Management, and Entrepreneurship.
Santa Clara has a number of business connections centered around its proximity to the Silicon Valley area, which gives aspiring entrepreneurs a first-hand look at how to build and grow business ideas from the ground up. Santa Clara's online learning platform gives students 24/7 access to course content, as well as live video and audio capabilities to keep students connected and communicating with their peers. Online courses in the MBA program are spread into a mixture of four-unit, 10-week courses and consecutively taught two-unit, five-week courses. Students are able to begin at the start of any new quarterly session, starting in the fall, winter, spring, or summer.