Our 2016 list of the Top 10 Online MBA Programs in the Southwest. For an explanation of our ranking criteria, click here.
1. Arizona State University, Tempe, Arizona (Top 2% of schools considered)
The W.P. Carey School of Business at Arizona State University offers a flexible Online MBA Program that allows students to take just one course at a time (five weeks per course) and customize their MBA by declaring an area of emphasis in Finance, International Business, Marketing, or Supply Chain Management. Students also have the option to earn two degrees in less time and at a lower cost. Concurrent online degree options include the MBA/Master of Legal Studies, the MBA/MSE Electrical Engineering, and the MBA/MS Industrial Engineering.
The AACSB accredited Carey School of Business Online MBA requires just one meeting at the beginning of the program. This mandatory orientation session allows students to meet faculty, staff, students, and teammates. After orientation, coursework for the 36 credit hour program may be completed entirely online.
2. University of Texas at Dallas, Dallas, Texas (Top 3% of schools considered)
The University of Texas at Dallas (UT Dallas) is home to the Naveen Jindal School of Management (JSOM), which offers 53 credit hour Online Professional MBA (PMBA) that utilizes "streaming audio lectures, video clips, online exams, online submission of assignments, and interactivity for group projects using discussion forums, email, and web conferencing." The program offers 24 hours of electives, along with an impressive 12 concentrations. Just a few include Accounting, Information Systems, Innovation and Entrepreneurship, Marketing, Real Estate, and Supply Chain Management. Students in this AACSB accredited have up to 72 months to complete the program.
All Online MBA students are encouraged to participate in the school's International Study Programs, which "give direct exposure to business in a global context." Besides offering Exchange Programs and International Internships, the JSOM Study Abroad Office has conducted more than 35 faculty led international study trips in 16 countries for the past 15 years.
3. University of Arizona, Tucson, Arizona (Top 6% of schools considered)
The Eller College of Management at the University of Arizona offers a 45 credit hour MBA that allows students to earn their degree 100% online. With six starts per year (or every eight weeks), this AACSB accredited program may be completed in as few as 14 months. Students may choose from six concentrations including Entrepreneurship, Health Care, Finance, Management and Organizations, Management Information Systems, and Marketing. Also known as the OMBA, the Eller Online MBA welcomed 89 students for the 2014-2015 school year.
4. University of North Texas, Denton, Texas (Top 8% of schools considered)
The College of Business (CoB) at the University of North Texas (UNT) offers Accelerated MBA’s in Strategic Management or Organizational Behavior, and MBAs in Finance or Marketing. All programs may be completed 100% online. The coursework for each 36 credit hour Online MBA is identical to the school’s Traditional MBA program and may be completed in as little as two years. Courses in the Accelerated Online MBA Programs are offered in eight-week sessions. All MBA programs offered through the College of Business at UNT are AACSB accredited.
5. West Texas A&M University, Canyon, Texas (Top 10% of schools considered)
The College of Business at West Texas A&M University (WTAMU) offers a 31 to 49 credit hour MBA program that may be completed entirely online. Students may also “combine online courses with campus courses to meet degree requirements.” Regardless of delivery format, all MBA students may choose an optional emphasis area such as Computer Information Systems, Management, Marketing, or Healthcare Management. The AACSB accredited Online MBA at WTAMU’s College of Business may be completed within a two-year period. However, some students have completed the program in as few as 12 to 18 months.
6. Oklahoma State University, Stillwater, Oklahoma (Top 11% of schools considered)
The Spears School of Business at Oklahoma State University (OSU) offers two MBA programs including a 42 credit hour part-time program, and a 43 credit hour full-time program. Both programs may be completed entirely online. Concentrations include Business Sustainability, Data Science, Energy Business, Entrepreneurship, Global Marketing, Human Resource Management, Information Assurance, Marketing Analytics, and Non-Profit Management.
Students in both AACSB accredited programs also have the option to earn a SAS and OSU Marketing Analytics Certificate. Per the school, the program is designed to “produce analytically-savvy managers who will be adept at leading teams of IT, Marketing and Strategy personnel in any organization to solve complex business problems by analyzing appropriate data. The curriculum for the program was designed in partnership with SAS, a leading provider of marketing analytics software and services.”
7. Colorado State University, Fort Collins, Colorado (Top 13% of schools considered)
The Online Professional MBA at Colorado State University’s (CSU) College of Business dates back to 1975 when the first “distance” offering was introduced. Today, the 40 credit hour program is offered 100% online and it features three specializations including Computer Information Systems, Finance, and Marketing. The school also offers a number of Certificates to complement the MBA program. Options include Finance, Marketing Management, Accounting Ethics and Auditing, Business Intelligence, Project Management, Business Information Systems, and Federal Financial Management.
Online MBA Students may also participate in an optional International Business Study Trip as an elective. During the program, students will meet with business leaders, “learning international business culture, and becoming acclimated to environments” different from their own. Including the Study Trip, the AACSB accredited Online MBA Program may be completed in as few as 21 months. However, students may take up to five years to complete the program.
8. University of Nevada, Reno, Nevada (Top 15% of schools considered)
The College of Business at University of Nevada Reno offers an Online Executive MBA (EMBA) Program “designed for mid-career executives and experienced professionals who want to advance in today’s challenging work world.” The 12-course program is offered as a two-year cohort beginning in fall. Per the College of Business, courses in the EMBA program are sequenced to assure continuity in learning. For each class, students will have at least one proctored exam, which will be taken through ProctorU, an online proctoring service, or in the 365 Learning Office. The Online EMBA at University of Nevada Reno is AACSB accredited.
9. University of Utah, Salt Lake City, Utah (Top 17% of schools considered)
The David Eccles School of Business at the University of Utah offers an Online MBA Program that takes 24 months to complete. The 48 credit hour program allows students to take two courses at a time, with courses held in five and 10-week blocks. Students will take courses such as Global Business, Data Analysis, Business Ethics, Business Technology, Managing & Leading Organizations, Project Management, and many others.
All online course content is available 24/7, and per the school, students have the opportunity to interact with faculty and other students in a weekly live web-conferencing session, as well as during one three-day on-campus residency. Online forums and multimedia are also utilized in this AACSB accredited program.
10. Baylor University, Waco, Texas (Top 18% of schools considered)
The Baylor MBA is offered 100% online and it may be completed in as few as 12 to 16 months. The AACSB accredited program highlights a “challenging curriculum that focuses on principled leadership” as well as “faith-based learning,” and “powerful corporate business alliances.” Just a few courses included in this 48 to 60 credit hour program include Ethical Leadership, Managing for Higher Performance, Manufacturing and Service Operations, Managing Information Technology in the Business Enterprise, and Negotiations.
Besides an accelerated pace and a challenging curriculum, the Baylor Online MBA has an excellent placement rate. The after-graduation employment rate was 96% in 2015, with students landing a position within 90 days after receiving their degree.