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How do I choose an MBA program?

Getting an MBA can give your business career a significant boost.

According to a survey conducted by corporate recruiters, three out of four companies plan to hire MBA graduates, and MBA holders earn an average salary of $115,000.1 For many professionals, that’s an appealing combination. But what’s the best way to choose an MBA program?

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If you’re considering MBA programs, you need to consider several factors, from your personal goals to the financial cost of your chosen program. “You need to choose an MBA program that you have a passion for, and a concentration that aligns with your professional goals,” says Walden University MBA graduate Andre Lynch. “That way you can put it to use, both personally and professionally.”

There are several considerations as you look for an MBA program that fits your needs. Here are a few questions to consider:

What do you want to gain from an MBA?

First, think about why you’re considering an MBA program. Do you want to switch careers, launch your own business, move up from your current role, network with other professionals, or earn more money? Once you identify the primary motivators, consider how an MBA would help you move forward. One way to do this is to talk with MBA graduates. Ask them about their educational experience and how it has impacted their career.

What is your ideal program length and learning scenario?

Not all MBA programs are alike—in fact, they’re often quite different from one another in terms of length, cost, and academic focus. Some MBA programs require residence on a university campus, while others are primarily (or entirely) earned online. Program length ranges from 10 months to four years, but most programs average around 18 to 20 months, especially if you attend full time. Consider whether you want to commit to full-time study or if you prefer to continue working while earning your MBA. Knowing this will help you find a program that’s a good fit for you.

What are your cost goals?

The total cost of an MBA program ranges widely. On average, full-time MBA programs that require on-campus presence are the most costly, while online MBA programs can be more affordable. Before you apply, think about the feasibility of your chosen program and whether it will enable you to earn a salary high enough to offset the short-term cost of the degree. Also, check to see if you are eligible for federal student aid, school scholarships, or employer tuition assistance programs, as all of these can help reduce tuition costs. If you’re a working professional, choose a program that allows you to continue working as you earn your degree. You may even want to look into tuition reimbursement programs offered by your employer.

Which specialization do you hope to pursue?

As an MBA student, you will have the opportunity to choose from specializations such as marketing, management, international business, human resources, business analytics, and finance. Some programs allow you to create a self-designed specialization tailored to your individual professional goals. If you’re sure which specialization you want to pursue, look for a program that has high-quality faculty members who can help you succeed in your particular area.

Consider a Degree From Walden University

Accredited by the Accreditation Council for Business Schools and Programs (ACBSP), Walden University’s Master of Business Administration program  blends a strong curriculum with real-world application while giving you the flexibility to pursue your degree without interrupting your career. You can develop problem-solving skills in one of nine specializations, and a fast-track option provides the opportunity to graduate in as little as 12 months.

Regardless of your passion or focus, an MBA degree can help you build strong skills to help you succeed in your career.

Walden University offers a fully online MBA program. Expand your career options and earn your degree using a convenient, flexible learning platform that fits your busy life.

1Source: https://www.gmac.com/-/media/files/gmac/research/employment-outlook/gmac_corporate_recruiters_survey_sept_2020.pdf

Walden University is accredited by The Higher Learning Commission, www.hlcommission.org.

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