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QS says there are at least 300 online MBA programs right now. The company also says this type of program has boomed over the last several years, jumping from just 4.4 percent of MBA students interested in 2008, up to 15.6 percent this year.
“The popularity of this form of study is increasing among candidates and MBA employers as they are starting to recognize the value of programs delivered by reputable schools,” says Nunzio Quacquarelli, editor of QS’ TopMBA Career Guide, in a news release. “While these programs provide a very different experience to the traditional full-time MBA, they give access to business education to a wider and growing motivated work force who are seeking a lifestyle education, a way to learn essential management skills, which fits with the reality of their lives.”
In the new rankings, QS looks at the best schools for student employability, program establishment date, student quality, faculty and teaching, and class experience and diversity. All ranked schools have to offer accredited online and distance-learning programs, while also providing other reputable business-education options. The W. P. Carey School is one of only three programs in the entire Top 15 based in the western half of the United States.
“The W. P. Carey School’s online MBA program is known for its exceptional faculty, made up of the same stellar educators teaching in our other MBA programs currently ranked Top 30 in the nation by U.S. News & World Report,” explains professor Stacey Whitecotton, associate dean for W. P. Carey MBA programs. “Our online MBA students get the same highly regarded degree as those in our acclaimed full-time and evening MBA programs.”
The W. P. Carey School’s online MBA program has grown from just 100 to more than 400 students over the last decade. NFL Pro Bowl kicker Billy Cundiff completed the program, even while attending NFL training camp. Lieutenant Colonel Scott Coulson, who was awarded the Bronze Star, a Purple Heart and a Combat Action Badge for his service and actions while leading combat missions in Iraq, also participated in the program while serving in the U.S. Army in Afghanistan. Several professionals who wanted to start their own businesses, such as law firms and medical practices, used the program to add business knowledge to their other fields of expertise.
The W. P. Carey online MBA is a two-year program in which students work in small, personalized teams with peers from other industries. Participants visit the ASU campus just once and then complete the program entirely via the Internet, making it extremely flexible and convenient. Students focus on just one course at a time and can earn their degrees with an area of emphasis, such as finance, international business, marketing or supply chain management, a field in which the W. P. Carey School consistently ranks Top 5 in the nation.
The school’s online MBA program is also recognized as an excellent value. Participants have a dedicated financial aid specialist and a career center to help them with job searches. For more information on the school’s MBA programs, go to wpcarey.asu.edu/mba.