The decision to enroll in an executive MBA online program allows you to plan your future and accept job opportunities in which you take on more responsibility and earn more money. What is the value of an executive MBA? The value is what you make it. If you attend an online class to better yourself and make it possible for you to be promoted to a higher position in your company, then the answer is a resounding yes! Taking an online executive MBA program is the key to advancement in many different industries and it gives the tools you need to stay on track even through the most difficult challenges.
An executive MBA can be used for advancement in almost any industry. An MBA degree will open doors for you that may not be available to others. Understanding how global markets work and how your company fits into the larger scheme of things will allow you to guide your team through difficult periods, making decisions that will impact the future of your company for many years to come. An executive MBA takes everything you have learned in the past and allows you to put all of the tools to good use. Combining those resources with the knowledge and experience you earn while on the job and you will have everything you need to advance in your career and earn that next big promotion.
How We Ranked the Best Online Executive MBA Programs
Working professionals who are considering an Executive MBA program want to know that their degree will have a real, positive impact on their career. That’s why Best Master’s Programs editors feature only accredited schools known for their job market authority. Programs are ranked according to data from College Scorecard, IPEDS, and Niche.
1. Duke University
The Global Executive MBA program from Duke University is one of the best executive MBA online programs for students who plan to work in a global environment. The degree program emphasizes the impact of culture on teamwork, business, and modern corporations to help students recognize different ways to interact with others in an international company. It also offers students the opportunity to learn from peers in the online classroom for insight into different perspectives.
Duke University focuses on providing students with a flexible schedule to help them keep up with their current work and obligations. It recognizes that students may not be able to attend classes during traditional times, so it provides a flexible online system that allows students to minimize time away from work. It does have residencies as part of the program, so students should be aware of the dates to ensure it will not impact their work responsibilities. The EMBA program at Duke University allows students to complete their degree in 18 months.
Degree: Global EMBA
2. Howard University
When you are looking for the best online executive MBA programs, you want to consider the online EMBA at Howard University. The program emphasizes flexibility and is fully online to ensure that students can work at their own pace. It teaches students the relevant skills they need to obtain their degree and work toward new goals. It provides a strong foundation in the business skills students need to move forward with career objectives.
Howard University teaches students the leadership skills they need to make a change to their careers. It ensures that students have a strong foundation in business and meet high standards of education. Since the school is AACSB-accredited, it does give students a quality education that helps them reach their long-term goals. Howard University does not require a GMAT score for students to qualify for admissions into the EMBA program.
3. Pace University
The online EMBA program from Pace University is one of the best executive MBA programs online for students who want to improve their leadership skills, critical thinking skills, and communication skills. The degree program emphasizes skills that help leaders take action in a large company or business environment. It prepares students to make difficult decisions and to communicate with employees and employers in an effective and concise manner. It helps students work on the skills that are essential for their goals.
Pace University takes a hands-on approach to education and has student teams solve real-world problems from large corporations and businesses. It helps students grasp the unique challenges that face businesses in a modern environment and prepares students to take on new positions after they finish their degree. The program does require weekend residencies at different times throughout the course, so students should pay attention to the residency requirements when evaluating the program. Pace University requires students to have at least five years of professional experience in a business environment or as a manager.
4. Brandeis University
The EMBA for Physicians from Brandeis University is one of the best online executive MBA programs for students who have experience as a medical doctor. The hybrid online program is designed around the unique experiences and needs of doctors. It uses a medical professional’s experience, training, and skills to build on his or her knowledge and skills in business. The program helps doctors develop the leadership skills they may need in their work environment.
Brandeis University takes an innovative approach to the study of business. The EMBA for Physicians emphasizes the specific and specialized skills that may impact medical professionals. It gives a unique view of the business topics and ensures that medical professionals are able to take on more challenging roles in their workplace. It also offers the fundamental skills that apply to businesses to help medical facilities and professionals address concerns within their industries. The EMBA program from Brandeis University takes only 16 months to complete.
Degree: EMBA for Physicians
5. University of New Orleans
The University of New Orleans offers an EMBA hybrid online program that helps business professionals develop the leadership skills they need to make a difference in their companies. The degree program emphasizes hands-on experience through projects and experiential learning. It also gives students a flexible schedule that allows them to keep up with professional and personal obligations. The University of New Orleans does not require a GRE or a GMAT for students in the EMBA program.
The University of New Orleans encourages students to succeed in their careers by providing the fundamental skills and knowledge they need to advance into a leadership role. The degree program gives students the training they need to work in more challenging positions, and it offers a flexible schedule with a hybrid online format. The in-person classes are available in the evenings to ensure that students are able to keep up with their jobs.
Degree: EMBA hybrid
6. Texas Southern University
The online EMBA program at Texas Southern University is one of the best executive MBA online programs for students who want to limit the disruption to their current career and job. The online program emphasizes flexibility in scheduling to ensure that students are able to focus on their goals and studies. Since the degree program is fully online, students are not required to spend any time on the school’s campus or at a residency. Texas Southern University emphasizes career experience, so students do not need a GMAT or GRE score to qualify for the program.
Texas Southern University emphasizes leadership and management skills as a primary aspect of the EMBA program. Students are able to study the business topics that help a company grow as well as the measures they may need to take as a leader in the company. It provides a strong foundation in effective skills that help students make improvements to their work environments.
7. University of Arkansas
The University of Arkansas offers an EMBA hybrid online program that is designed around the needs of working adults. It recognizes that students must balance their personal obligations and life with a career and their studies, so it provides a flexible environment for students to improve their situations. The degree program does require students to attend classes one Saturday each month on campus; however, the majority of classes and materials are online.
The University of Arkansas stands apart by emphasizing business studies as it applies to consumer-packaged goods and the value chain used in retail companies. Since the school puts a specific emphasis on the retail industry and the application of business skills within a specific business industry, it helps students understand the process of applying theories to a company’s products or services. The University of Arkansas offers a GRE and GMAT waiver to students who have at least five years of appropriate work experience and an excellent academic record.
Degree: EMBA hybrid
8. University of Virginia
When you are looking into the best executive MBA programs online, the University of Virginia offers an EMBA program that may fit your needs. The degree emphasizes the work-life balance and helps students keep up with their careers and their personal obligations while still working on the skills and training that will help with their career goals. The program teaches students the fundamental leadership skills they need to take on a management or leadership role, as well as the business skills to help a company grow and thrive.
The University of Virginia takes a hybrid online approach to student education in the EMBA program. Students will need to attend weekend residencies as part of the course; however, it also offers online classes that help students keep up with their careers and personal obligations. It emphasizes connectivity in the online courses and makes sure that students are able to communicate with professors and peers during class discussions. The University of Virginia offers merit-based scholarships to students in the EMBA program.
9. University of Missouri
The hybrid online EMBA program from the University of Missouri offers a solution to help students accomplish their goals without wasting time in a traditional classroom. While it does have four residencies each year for students in the program, the majority of the course material is online and allows students to work at their own pace. It also encourages students to make connections with members of their cohort as they work through the class materials.
The University of Missouri takes a cohort approach to study that stands out from other programs. Students advance in the EMBA program as a cohort, so students will work with the same classmates throughout their studies. That allows students to develop comfortable teams that work together to complete projects and keep up with their class materials. The University of Missouri offers small class sizes that help students connect with peers and professors when they have questions or concerns.
Degree: EMBA hybrid
10. St Joseph’s College (NY)
The EMBA program from St. Joseph’s College in New York is an online program that allows students to focus on developing managerial skills and leadership skills for a modern work environment. The degree program focuses on helping students gain the skills they need through real-world experience and examples. By focusing on the situations that arise in real businesses and corporations, students are able to see how to apply their skills when they are facing a similar challenge.
St. Joseph’s College in New York focuses on helping students develop the skills that are relevant for an executive role in their industry. The degree emphasizes leadership as it applies to businesses and critical thinking to help students make effective decisions for the company’s growth. It gives students a strong foundation for their career objectives. St. Joseph’s College allows students to obtain certifications that further enhance their skills and degree.
11. UNC Wilmington
UNC Wilmington offers an EMBA program that prepares students for the rigors of working in a modern business environment as a leader or manager. The program emphasizes critical thinking as it applies to business, as well as responsible leadership to ensure that students are able to recognize problems that may arise when making decisions for a company.
UNC Wilmington stands apart from other programs by offering a variety of executive programs for students looking for an EMBA. The school offer specialized EMBA programs that focus on specific industries, like the healthcare industry, as well as a general EMBA program for students who want to gain leadership skills and focus on advancing in their careers in business. UNC Wilmington allows students in the online EMBA program to complete their degree within 12 months.
12. Park University
Park University offers an EMBA program online that prepares students to work in a global market environment. The degree program emphasizes collaboration and leadership skills to help students create effective teams in the workplace. It also helps students understand the way global factors and cultural differences may impact the goals of a business. By understanding the global market, it is possible for students to develop strategies to address concerns that may arise when a company provides services or products to a different country.
Park University takes a flexible approach to student education. While it does have a fully on-campus EMBA program, it also offers a fully online program and a hybrid online program to allow students to find the right option for their goals. The ability to choose the right type of program allows students to focus on their careers or work on their studies when they have personal obligations that may limit their time. Park University is ACBSP-accredited for its EMBA program.
13. Bethel University
Bethel University offers an EMBA program that focuses on students to want to develop management and leadership skills. The program is tailored to students who are already working as a manager or who have relevant experience in a professional field that requires them to gain leadership skills to continue moving forward with their career objectives. Bethel University allows students to take classes at an accelerated pace and graduate within 21 months.
Bethel University stands apart by taking a writing-based approach to student education. Students are expected to develop effective written communication skills and to work on course material in a written format. It also teaches students the skills they need to advance into an executive role, so students can expect to learn critical thinking skills and decision-making skills to help with their long-term goals. Since it is designed around working adults who have management experience, the degree program does not require a GRE test score to get into the program.
14. Southeastern University
Southeastern University offers one of the best online executive MBA programs available in the country. The MBA in Executive Leadership requires the completion of twelve courses for 39 credit units to graduate. Most students who complete these best executive MBA programs online can do so in 1.5 to 2 years. Southeastern University accepts transfer credits that can be applied towards their best executive MBA online programs. SEU’s MBA program has received accreditation from the ACBSP – the Accreditation Council for Business Schools and Programs. The Executive Leadership track requires the completion of 15 credit units, which include Leadership Philosophy, Business Strategy, and Global Social Entrepreneurship, among others.
Southeastern University was established in 1935. The school is affiliated with Christian Assemblies of God. The school’s 80+ acre campus is home to more than 7,000 students studying for degrees offered by the university’s six schools/colleges. Southeastern University holds the distinction of being the largest Assemblies of God university in the country.
Degree: MBA – Executive Leadership
15. Saint Mary’s College of California
Saint Mary’s College of California offers a hybrid Executive Master of Business Management (EMBA) degree program that is considered among the best executive MBA online programs available. Coursework for Saint Mary’s College’s best online executive MBA programs include Managing Organizations, Applied Economics, Supply Chain Management, and Goal-Centered Finance, to name a few. St Mary’s College’s best executive MBA programs online offer two concentrations – Entrepreneurship and Business Analytics. MBA students may attend the Executive Series, which provides an insider view of the world of business through guest lecturers.
Saint Mary’s College of California is a university that was established in 1863. Saint Mary’s remains affiliated with the Roman Catholic (De La Salle Brothers) Church. The school’s suburban campus serves more than 3,700 students. Saint Mary’s College of California was used by the navy during WWII to train navy pilots.
Degree: EMBA hybrid
16. James Madison University
James Madison University’s College of Business offers an Executive Master of Business Administration degree program in Executive Leadership that is available entirely online. JMU’s best online executive MBA programs prepare graduates to be the next generation’s business leaders. The best executive MBA programs online are designed for mid-level managers who have at least five years of experience. Students enrolled in JMU’s best executive MBA online programs learn the skills required to transition successfully to C-Suite level jobs. Coursework includes Business Law, Supply Chain Logistics, Business Leadership, and Big Data Analytics, to name a few.
James Madison University was established as a public institution of higher learning/teacher training school for women in 1908. The school’s Shenandoah Valley campus covers more than 700 acres and serves more than 22,000 students studying for academic degrees offered by the school’s nine schools/colleges. Kiplinger recognizes JMU among the best value public schools in the country.
Degree: MBA – Executive Leadership
17. Purdue University
Purdue University’s Krannert Executive Education offers a hybrid Executive Master of Business Administration (EMBA) degree program that is recognized among the best online executive MBA programs available. Students attending Purdue’s best executive MBA programs online have the opportunity to attend an international residency program within the 19-month schedule. Purdue’s best executive MBA online programs require students to attend a residency on-campus only once each quarter. The Purdue EMBA has received accreditation by the AACSB – the Association to Advance Collegiate Schools of Business.
Purdue University was established in 1869. Purdue University holds the honor of being the flagship school of the Purdue University system, a land-grant, a sea-grant, and space-grant public institution of higher learning. The school’s large-town campus covers more than 2,600 acres and serves more than 43,000 students. Purdue University owns another 15,000+ acres of land that is used for the school’s industrial and agricultural research divisions.
Degree: EMBA hybrid
18. University of Nevada Reno
The University of Nevada Reno offers one of the best executive MBA online programs in the country. UN Reno’s Executive MBA degree program requires the completion of twelve courses over a 24-month period. Core courses for these best online executive MBA programs include Operations Management, Statistical Decision Making, Financial Reporting, Financial Management, and Economics of a Business, to name a few. UN Reno’s best executive MBA programs online have received approval for veterans and veteran’s benefits related to education.
The University of Nevada, at Reno, was founded in 1874 under the Morril Land Grant Act. The school is also a flagship campus and a space-grant university. UN Reno serves more than 21,000 students on its urban Reno campus. The University of Nevada Reno is the only school in Nevada to hold a land-grant designation.
19. Tennessee State University
Tennessee State University offers one of the country’s best online executive MBA programs that is offered in a fast track format that can be completed in only one year. The best executive MBA programs online are designed for busy working learners as it meets on weekends and offered through a hybrid format. Students enrolled in TSU’s best executive MBA online programs have the opportunity to study abroad for a week and a half to gain a more global perspective of leadership. Students must complete 36 credit hours to graduate.
Tennessee State University was established in 1912. The school’s 900+acres is home to nearly 8,000 students studying for undergraduate, graduate, and doctoral level degrees offered by the schools eight colleges. US News recognized TSU within the top 35 HBCU schools in the country. Tennessee State University holds the distinction of being the largest of the state-funded HBCU schools in Tennessee.
20. Ohio University
Ohio University offers one of the best executive MBA online programs with a concentration in Executive Management. Students applying to enroll in OU’s best online executive MBA programs are not required to submit a GMAT score. Poets & Quants recognizes OU’s best executive MBA programs online among the best in the nation – the only institution of higher education to receive this ranking. Students must complete a total of 35 credit units to graduate, with most students completing 5 or 6 credit units per semester.
Ohio University was established in 1804. Ohio University holds the distinction as being the oldest public school in the state of Ohio and the eighth oldest in the country. OU’s Athens college town campus covers more than 1,800 acres and serves more than 20,000. The total student enrollment for all campuses exceeds 34,000. This public research institution of higher education was established seventeen years before Ohio was adopted as a state.
Degree: MBA – Executive Management
21. Rochester Institute of Technology
The Rochester Institute of Technology’s Saunders College of Business offers one of the country’s best online executive MBA programs that can be completed in only four semesters over 17 months. The school offers two start dates for those students who wish to complete these best executive MBA programs online – August and December. The same faculty who teach at RIT on-campus, are the instructors for these best executive MBA online programs. RIT’s Executive MBA program has received accreditations from the AACSB – the Association to Advance Collegiate Schools of Business.
The Rochester Institute of Technology is a doctoral institution of higher educated that was established in 1829. RIP’s suburban campus is home to more than 19,000 students. More than a dozen RIP alumni and faculty members have received the Pulitzer Prize. The Rochester Institute of Technology holds the distinction of being in the top ten of the largest private schools in the nation.
22. Washington State University
Washington State University’s Carson College of Business offers an Executive Master of Business Administration (EMBA) that is recognized among the country’s best online executive MBA programs that do not require students to submit a GMAT upon application. WSU’s best executive MBA programs online have received accreditation from the Association to Advance Collegiate Schools of Business International (AACSB). Coursework for WSU’s best executive MBA online programs include Managerial Leadership, Business Analytics, Professional Ethics, Innovation Management, and International Business Management, to name a few. Students must complete 44 credit hours over a period of 18months.
Washington State University (WSU) was established in 1890 as the result of the Morrill Land Grant Act. The school is the state’s 2nd largest university. The campus of WSU is situated on top of a hill and serves nearly 31,000 students systemwide. Washington State University is recognized among the oldest land grant universities in the western portion of the United States.
23. University of North Alabama
The University of North Alabama’s College of Business offers an Executive Master of Business Administration (EMBA) degree program that has been recognized among the best executive MBA online programs in the nation and number 1 in Alabama for MBA with a concentration in Human Resources. UNA’s best online executive MBA programs accept professional experience of five years in lieu of an acceptable GMAT score. Students enrolled in the University of North Alabama’s best executive MBA programs online required degree candidates to complete 34 credit units. Students have nine specialty areas from which to choose.
The University of North Alabama was founded in 1830 as a public institution of higher education entitled LaGrange College. UNA’s campus straddles four cities (Florence, Tuscumbia, Sheffield & Muscle Shoals) with a metro population of over 125,000. The University of North Alabama is recognized as one of the country’s first established coeducation institutions of higher learning.
24. Faulkner University
Faulkner University offers an Executive Master of Business Administration (EMBA) degree program that ranks among the best executive MBA programs online available in the country. Faulkner University’s best executive MBA online programs include ten courses that are completed one at a time over five-week mini semesters. The classes included in Faulkner University’s best online executive MBA programs are Managerial Economics, Organizational Behavior, Strategic Management, and Quantitative Analysis, to name a few. All degree candidates must pass the final exam that focuses its evaluation on Management Information Systems, Quantitative Analysis, and Strategic Management.
Faulkner University was founded in 1942 with the original name of the Montgomery Bible School. It nd is affiliated with the Churches of Christ. Faulkner University’s Montgomery campus is home to more than 3500 students. Faulkner University operates satellite campuses in Huntsville, Birmingham, and Mobile.
25. Spring Arbor University
Spring Arbor University offers one of Michigan’s best online executive MBA programs that can be completed entirely online. SAU’s MBA degree program in Executive Leadership is generally completed in 1.5 years and does not require the submission of a GRE or GMAT score at application. SAU’s best executive MBA online programs have been designed for working learners as the program only requires the completion of one course at a time, although the school offers accelerated paths for interested students. The best executive MBA programs online prepare graduates to enter the workforce as c-suite executives.
Spring Arbor University was established in 1873. The school remains affiliated with the Free Methodist Church. Spring Arbor University’s student enrollment exceeds 1,375. The school’s campus is situated on a former Indian village of the Potawatomi Nation. Spring Arbor University holds the distinction of being the 2nd largest evangelical Christian institution of higher education in the state of Michigan.
Degree: MBA – Executive Leadership
Should I Get an Executive MBA Online?
Is an Executive MBA worth it? That depends on what the student’s ultimate goals are. Students who are working full-time can benefit from getting an online Executive MBA degree. MBA executive programs online allow you to attend the school of your choice and keep your current job. Family obligations are meet and the student is able to study when it is most convenient for them. They have access to the same educational courses as students who attend a classroom and are taught by the same faculty and instructors.
An Executive MBA degree gives you the skills you need to work in upper management level positions. You are able to make complex decisions based on global marketing trends. You are able to work with other professionals on larger projects that require a more worldly viewpoint when it comes to strategizing and figuring out the best way to move your company to the next level. You will deal with logistics, procurement, marketing, operations, and the management of your company and its workforce.
What Will I Learn in an Executive MBA Program?
The basics of an executive MBA degree will allow you to streamline how your business functions. Students will learn how to evaluate what systems are working and what ones need improvement. Students will learn how to work with other professionals to create an effective marketing plan that uses multi-level strategies to push the business forward and continue on a path that allows the company to keep growing and advancing into the future. An executive MBA teaches how a business functions on a much larger level. Global trading, international contracts, and creating partnerships with companies from across the globe take special skills that are gained through an executive MBA degree program.
While an MBA degree program may be sufficient for some, the Executive MBA program provides faster-paced classes and is designed for students who are thinking on a more global level. A simple MBA degree is more generalized and is less focused on the more intricate aspects of a business and what it needs to operate on a larger scale. An executive MBA provides students the tools they need to stand with the business elite, those who have spent years fine-tuning their abilities to stay in stride with the more advanced, larger corporations that do business on an international level.
Will I Make More With an Executive MBA?
In terms of regular salary options, a graduate with a traditional MBA can make around $110,000 to $115,000 a year. A graduate who has completed their executive MBA degree program can make upwards of $133,000 per year. They may also qualify for additional bonuses and awards, depending on their company and how they are rated among the other staff. Both the traditional MBA and executive MBA degree programs offer invaluable skills for students are ready to enter the workforce.
Students who have taken their courses online while they are already working in a full-time position are open for advancement almost as soon as they receive their degree. The amount of money you make per year will depend on your years of experience, what type of MBA you have, and your past work history. When you combine all of these factors you are much more likely to start at a higher pay scale than if you have very little experience and only have a Bachelor’s degree in business administration.