2019 Best Online Master's in Management Programs

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This list ranks the 12 schools with the best online master's in management programs, based on annual tuition and median salary. Michigan State University is ranked #1 on the list, with an annual tuition of $16,350 and a reported median mid-career salary of $113,600. Embry-Riddle Aeronautical University-Worldwide, ranked #2, is also impressive with a median alumni salary of only $104,100 and an annual tuition of only $9,975.

Alumni salaries were provided by PayScale. View our methodology for more details, learn more about SR Education Group, or browse our comprehensive guide to an online management degree.

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Rank School Annual Tuition Median Salary
#1 #1 Michigan State University Annual Tuition $16,350 Median Salary $113,600
#2 #2 Embry-Riddle Aeronautical University-Worldwide Annual Tuition $9,975 Median Salary $104,100
#3 #3 Albertus Magnus College Annual Tuition $15,318 Median Salary $103,300
#4 #4 University of Maryland University College Annual Tuition $11,862 Median Salary $99,471
#5 #5 Webster University Annual Tuition $14,040 Median Salary $98,943
#6 #6 Western Governors University Annual Tuition $7,500 Median Salary $95,500
#7 #7 Troy University Annual Tuition $14,820 Median Salary $94,200
#8 #8 Lesley University Annual Tuition $10,725 Median Salary $92,900
#9 #9 Arizona State University Annual Tuition $15,150 Median Salary $92,986
#10 #10 Bellevue University Annual Tuition $10,350 Median Salary $79,586
#11 #11 Southern New Hampshire University Online Annual Tuition $13,794 Median Salary $76,700
#12 #12 Wayland Baptist University Annual Tuition $9,300 Median Salary $58,700
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  • Annual Tuition: $16,350
  • Accreditation: HLC
  • School Type: Non-Profit
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The Master of Science in Management, Strategy, and Leadership from Michigan State University is a fully online degree program offered through the Eli Broad College of Business. This online master’s degree was designed specifically for working managers, which is why students are offered the flexibility to begin any semester and work at their own pace to complete the degree in an average of 20-24 months. Students study strategy, human resource management, leadership, decision making, and team management through technology-based coursework and hands-on activities facilitated by experienced management professionals from the Broad School.

  • Annual Tuition: $9,975
  • Accreditation: SACS COC
  • School Type: Non-Profit
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Embry-Riddle Aeronautical University-Worldwide was one of the first universities to offer online learning and provides a Master of Science in Management with a number of concentrations, including Global Management, Human Resources Management, Leadership, Operations Management, and Project Management. The MSM program is designed to help students gain practical knowledge of planning and strategy, global economics, technical management, and more. To provide additional flexibility, both asynchronous and live virtual classes are available. Courses last nine weeks, with terms beginning 10 times a year, so students can work toward their academic and career goals when it is most convenient for them.

  • Annual Tuition: $15,318
  • Accreditation: NEASC CIHE
  • School Type: Non-Profit
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The Online & Flex Programs offered by Albertus Magnus College give working adults the opportunity to pursue an accelerated online degree from home. Students can earn an online master’s degree in a variety of management fields, such as an MS in Management and Organizational Leadership and an MBA in General Management. These programs, offered through the Tagliatela School of Business and Leadership, allow students to attend classes remotely and complete coursework on an asynchronous basis. Classes run for eight weeks, and students typically enroll in one or two at a time, depending on their work and family schedule.

  • Annual Tuition: $11,862
  • Accreditation: MSCHE
  • School Type: Non-Profit
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Students can earn an online Master of Science in Management from the University of Maryland University College and choose from more than a dozen specializations, such as accounting, criminal justice management, and human resource management. This program is designed with input from employers in order to provide relevant and up-to-date courses to help hone students' decision-making skills and real-world experience. UMUC offers asynchronous learning, so students can fit school into a busy work and family schedule, studying at any time of day or night from anywhere in the world. They also offer numerous 6-credit graduate courses that allow students to focus on one topic per semester rather than two.

  • Annual Tuition: $14,040
  • Accreditation: HLC
  • School Type: Non-Profit
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An online master’s in management from Webster University is designed to help working adults gain the skills they need to pursue managerial positions in their career. To suit students in a variety of fields, the school offers a wide range of management degrees, including an MA in Management and Leadership and an MBA - Management and Leadership. The majority of these programs are offered on an asynchronous basis, giving students the flexibility to complete their coursework at any time from anywhere.

  • Annual Tuition: $7,500
  • Accreditation: NWCCU and DEAC
  • School Type: Non-Profit
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Western Governors University offers an online M.S. Management & Leadership for working professionals who want to advance in their careers and want a flexible learning schedule. Their classes are competency-based, allowing students to complete the degree at an accelerated pace. Most graduates finish in 9-24 months and will learn how to promote growth, creativity, and innovation while building skills in strategic planning and problem-solving. Because tuition is charged per term rather than per credit, students who work more quickly can actually save money on the overall cost of their degree.

Online Master's Degrees (1)

  • Annual Tuition: $14,820
  • Accreditation: SACS COC
  • School Type: Non-Profit
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Troy University in Alabama offers a diverse range of online degree programs that cater to students of all ages from all over the world. They offer several options for online master’s in management degrees, including a Master of Business Administration - General Management, a Master of Science in Management, a Master of Science in Management - Leadership, and a Master of Science in Management - Leadership and Organizational Effectiveness. Many of these fully online programs can be completed in just a year if the student holds a relevant undergraduate degree. Online students even have the opportunity to connect with their peers through a virtual student union called the Trojan Café.

  • Annual Tuition: $10,725
  • Accreditation: NEASC CIHE
  • School Type: Non-Profit
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The online master of science in management from Lesley University helps equip managers to solve real-world problems and make strategic leadership decisions in the workplace. Depending on their professional goals, students can study general management or choose a concentration in either human resource management or non-profit management. LU offers the classes for this 100% online master’s program on an accelerated 8-week schedule. Students work on their own time, but they interact with their peers through discussion boards and chat rooms. Studying part-time, the average student completes the 33-credit-hour program in just under two years.

  • Annual Tuition: $15,150
  • Accreditation: HLC
  • School Type: Non-Profit
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Students can advance their careers with an online Master of Applied Leadership & Management (MALM) at Arizona State University's prestigious W.P. Carey School of Business, and they can choose from a number of specialty concentrations as diverse as construction management and nonprofit leadership. With these programs, students gain specialty knowledge of management and leadership principles that apply directly to their field of work. Many of these programs offer flexible start dates for classes, some as often as every five weeks.

  • Annual Tuition: $10,350
  • Accreditation: HLC
  • School Type: Non-Profit
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Nebraska’s Bellevue University offers affordable online master’s degrees in management and other fields. BU’s Master of Business Administration degree offers a general management concentration, along with focuses in acquisitions and contract management, information security management, project management, and more. Bellevue University also offers a Master of Science in Management with concentrations such as Executive Coaching, Human Resource Management, and Project Management. All instructors for online classes have real-world experience in the field and training in web-based learning methods to ensure students get the most out of their online degree.

  • Annual Tuition: $13,794
  • Accreditation: NEASC CIHE
  • School Type: Non-Profit
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Students can pursue an online Master's in Management degree at Southern New Hampshire University Online. Designed to help students develop skills needed to be flexible and responsive managers, the curriculum places an emphasis on the science, philosophy, and practice of effective management. The program helps instill the acumen to make critical decisions, problem solve, assess many different situations, and more. Students who take two classes per 10-week session can finish this affordable online degree in just 15 months.

Online Master's Degrees (1)

  • Annual Tuition: $9,300
  • Accreditation: SACS COC
  • School Type: Non-Profit
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Wayland Baptist University is a private Christian college in Plainview, Texas and offers an MA in Management. This flexible degree program was designed for the working adult seeking advancement in their career. Students can choose from concentrations in organizational management, human resource management, and healthcare administration. Each of these 39-hour programs equips students with the leadership and communication skills needed to become an effective manager in the modern workplace. Students can transfer in up to 12 credit hours for approved courses from another institution.

Overview of an Online Master's in Management

Online master’s programs in management help students learn the skills necessary to lead organizations of all types. Management programs are available in several formats including a Master of Science, Master of Arts, or a Master of Business Administration. Depending on the program, curricula can cover foundational concepts in business or they might focus more on advanced management skills and theories.

Careers

Master’s degrees in management can open up a wide range of careers, depending on your previous work experience and the focus of the degree. Many use these degrees to advance into chief management or analysis roles in their current workplace. Others use a specialized degree focus, such as coursework in healthcare administration or educational leadership, to move into a different career area. The management program can also be useful for leadership roles in information technology, marketing, and the non-profit sector.

What is the difference between a Master in Management and an MBA in Management?

The Master of Arts (MA) or Master of Science (MS) management programs have many overlapping characteristics with the practically oriented Master of Business Administration (MBA) program, with some exceptions. Some management master's degrees are similar to the MBA in that they include a general array of business classes such as marketing, management, accounting, and finance. Others concentrate more on a particular management area, such as leadership, management science, or project management.

While Master in Management programs have typically been more common in Europe, these degrees have become increasingly popular in the U.S. over the last few years. Master in Management degrees tend to take less time to complete, have lower program costs, and attract students with fewer years of work experience, making them more accessible than many MBA programs.

MBA programs are often structured in cohorts, meaning students take all the same classes together. Cohort programs can be beneficial for students seeking a sense of community and networking opportunities. On the other hand, these students might find the curricula of Master in Management programs preferable since they tend to focus more on group projects and MBA programs tend to focus more on reviewing case studies. Many management programs also require capstone projects, where students analyze and solve a specific business problem.

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