Most Expensive Online MBA Programs

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Many factors come to play when looking for the best Online MBA program. When narrowing down your top choices, things to look at are the program and school rankings, degree specifications, faculty, alumni, and the big one is the cost of tuition. We have researched the top ten most expensive universities that offer Online MBA programs. While many may marvel at the price tag at of some of these expensive Online MBA programs, there are a myriad of factors that influence the cost of tuition, including residency, total credit hours, prestige, public vs. private, and included fees or trips. Ranging from $100,000 to over $160,00 the Online MBA programs on this list come with a hefty price tag but also hold some of the highest recognitions and MBA brands. 

University of Virginia

University of Virginia logo

Coming in number one is the University of Virginia. The Executive Online MBA tuition comes in over $160,000 and ranks 20 from the Online MBA Coach Best Online MBA Ranking. Their executive programs are more integrated than ever before, with EMBA and GEMBA students learning and mixing throughout the program. The only distinction is that EMBA students participate in at least one weeklong global residency, while GEMBA students participate in all four.

All students participate in a week-long leadership residency on the grounds of the Darden School in Charlottesville, Virginia, to begin and complete the program. On average, weekend residences are held once a month in Darden’s state-of-the-art facility in Arlington, Virginia’s Rosslyn neighborhood. Students follow a Friday through Sunday timetable on weekends. Friday classes start at noon and end at 3 p.m. on Sundays.

Best Online MBA Ranking: 20

Duke University

Duke University logo

Coming in at number two is the Blue devils at Duke University. This University offers a vast student network for the graduates to join and network. In this 21-month program, working professionals worldwide come together to achieve a world-class Executive MBA. Through overseas residencies that focus on how culture and institutions impact business in Asia, Latin America, Europe, and North America, you’ll expand your horizons. A unique team approach guarantees that you learn from your classmates, who are high-potential peers with experience in various sectors and functions. Without disrupting your career, you’ll gain business savvy and a comprehensive global network.

Admittance to the Global Executive MBA program is highly selective and competitive. It intends to identify students with excellent business skills and leadership experience, who thrive on various viewpoints, and who have goals that the school’s programs can help them achieve.

What’s your first move? Contact their Global Executive MBA counselor, Kavita Rajagopal, by email or phone. She will help you assess if your stories and motivations are a good match for this program — and vice versa — because “fit” is crucial when choosing an MBA program. Their admissions team will be quick to respond to your questions, assisting you in determining whether Duke is the best fit for you and providing you with information and tools to help you throughout the admissions process.

Best Online MBA Ranking: 18 

Carnegie Mellon University

Carnegie Mellon University logo from website

The Tepper Part-Time Online Hybrid MBA allows you to obtain a STEM-designated MBA in a part-time, online format that is laser-focused on the future of business – driven by data and propelled by humans. You’ll work in collaborative teams with whip-smart peers from a variety of backgrounds and skillsets in this top-ranked online program. You’ll follow an analytics-focused curriculum while learning to leverage emerging technologies and use data to make smarter decisions, guided by the same dynamic professors that teach our Full-Time MBA program. Your first day at Tepper begins with a thorough dive into analytics. You’ll gain a thorough understanding of marketing, finance, operations, economics, accounting, organizational behavior, and strategy as a result of the core curriculum, as well as the confidence to lead the cross-functional teams required to shape the future.

You’ll graduate with the quantitative skills needed to estimate outcomes and devise solutions in the face of uncertainty after completing your MBA.

Best Online MBA Ranking: 3 

University of California, Los Angeles

University of California Los Angeles logo

To suit students’ different educational needs and professional ambitions, UCLA Anderson provides both degree and non-degree programs. UCLA Anderson’s demanding programs provide excellent academic preparation, a collaborative and welcoming student culture, and access to a vibrant business environment, as well as educational and career assistance resources. UCLA Anderson offers many degree plans pending your experience and your educational goals. The FEMBA (Fully Employed MBA) is the MBA program students go for that are currently working full time and need a program that caters to the busy life and demands of someone working who wants to level up and get their MBA. 

Incoming students will have the opportunity to join a global network of over 41,000 alumni, 720 students, and 150 UCLA Anderson faculty, including numerous industry leaders. This alone is a great incentive knowing that you are becoming part of a successful academic institution with connected alumni leading the way in their prospective fields of study. 

Best Online MBA Ranking: 21

University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill

University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill logo from website

For ten years, UNC Kenan-Flagler’s Online MBA has been grooming agile leaders online. Students will develop a leadership style that reflects their values, builds on personal skills, and puts them in a position to succeed. UNC believes students shouldn’t have to sacrifice, so they offer a demanding MBA program without negatively affecting their students’ lives or professions.

Here’s what students can anticipate from their well-known, tried-and-true online MBA program, which was created by some of the world’s brightest business minds. UNC Kenan-Flagler faculty members work hands-on with the students. They have extensive expertise teaching in an online learning setting. Students can plan classes and schoolwork to fit around other obligations. Students can tailor the MBA program to their goals, hobbies, and industry.

Best Online MBA Ranking: 2

University of Michigan

University of Michigan logo

Leaders, researchers, and lifelong learners are produced at Michigan Ross. The staff and faculty create innovative solutions to the world’s most complex business challenges. Michigan Ross is a top-ranked business school that focuses on action-based learning to equip students for today’s fast-paced world. Their effect reaches far beyond the classroom as they strive to set a new business and business education standard.

Their Online MBA was intentionally built with hands-on learning and robust support. Their format is flexible and interactive and provides breadth and depth to this advanced business education. With online self-guided study, live online sessions, and campus residencies, Ross students get the best of on-campus and online formats. Their curriculum offers a myriad of electives, as well as global opportunities. Students also get the opportunities to engage in their Multidisciplinary Action Projects (MAP), which gives students hands-on business consulting experience. This consulting project gives Tham the time to apply their knowledge to real organizational problems and make important business connections with outside organizations. This type of experience truly is priceless.

Best Online MBA Ranking: 19

Rice University

Rice University logo from website

Rice University has a unique philosophy. They believe that inquiring minds and entrepreneurial spirits thrive in an atmosphere that is particularly collaborative as well as personal. With this in mind, the Rice Business digital campus and Online MBA program were created.

The Rice Online MBA program coupled their educational excellence with their intentional online philosophy. It was designed with working people in mind, with high-touch experiences that support students and their career goals both at work and at home. To take your education beyond physical and cultural borders, students attend Intensive Learning Experiences on campus in Houston and Global Learning Experiences in business hubs worldwide. Students form important new bonds with classmates and professors. These collaborations are important for the personal connection, but also it allows students to put what they have learned in the classroom into practice through collaborative assignments that push them to think critically. 

Best Online MBA Ranking: 6

Emory University

Emory University logo

Goizueta believes that leadership abilities are critical to a company’s success. At Goizueta, they place a premium on developing leadership and strategy skills as part of the Executive MBA program. Students will learn from experts, explore ideas with their peers, and gain hands-on experience in global immersions. Every aspect of the Emory MBA program is interwoven to develop dynamic leaders.

One big attribute of the globally recognized Executive MBA program is the intentionality of diversity adding to the strength of individual perspective and business leadership. Students have the opportunity to work with classmates from different backgrounds and business sectors. Students also experience a week-long global immersion trip. In the course of 18 months, students will cover core course topics, participate in a Leader’s Reaction course, engage in executive coaching, tailor their curriculum with elective courses, and finish the program with a project-based course. This Executive program is built for graduates to emerge with an advanced understanding of their leadership style and the ability to further their career to the most elite offices.

Best Online MBA Ranking: 24

University of Southern California

University of Southern California from website

The online MBA program at USC Marshall has a bold curriculum designed to help business professionals succeed in a data-driven, digital future. The coursework combines core business skills with contemporaneous business problems to produce students’ leadership and critical thinking abilities. The program was founded in 2015 and consistently recognized as a top program by U.S. News & World Report; the coursework pairs foundational business skills with contemporary business issues to develop students’ leadership and critical thinking abilities.

The curriculum was created from the ground up for online delivery, allowing students to build long-term professional relationships, in the same manner they would in on-campus classes. Students will learn how to become forward-thinking business leaders who can examine a situation from multiple viewpoints and develop effective, practical solutions. The USC Online Master of Business Administration program prepares graduates to become more influential leaders in a technology-driven generation. Students will undergo a one-week on-campus residency, regaling video content produced at the USC Marshall in-house studio, and weekly, live class sessions conducted via webcam.

Best Online MBA Ranking: 1

University of California, Irvine

University of California Irvine logo

UCI’s Fully Employed MBA (FEMBA) program is designed to work around students’ professional and personal hectic schedule. This program is ideal for early to mid-career business professionals looking to think creatively and strategically for today’s complex and ever developing issues.

This rigorous and relevant program focuses on honing professional’s abilities as a flexible leader, predicting change, and seizing market opportunities in a digitally-driven world. Students can expect four drivers of corporate growth to be woven throughout the curriculum – strategic innovation, information technology, rational decision-making, and collaborative execution – and taught using the most up-to-date research, real-world projects, and industry case studies. Students can tailor their studies in the in their second year by choosing a focused area of study. Focus areas include Operation and Decision Technologies, Information Systems, Global, Accounting, Real Estate, and Strategy. Teamwork is another component of the FEMBA program, which creates a collaborative and intense teamwork environment for every student.

Best Online MBA Ranking: 42

Action Plans

We cannot let base numbers deter us from going to the next level in our careers. If you find your sights set on an Online MBA program with a high tuition cost, don’t view it as a closed door. While financial information is excellent information to know so you can prepare for the process of admission, it is only a starting point. It is time to do the research and ask questions.

Does the business school offer scholarships? So many universities and business schools have specific financial aid to their students. Does your job offer tuition reimbursement? While scholarships, grants, and work-study programs are all excellent alternatives, tuition help and reimbursement programs offered by employers are effective methods to fund your education. There’s never been a better moment to examine other methods of paying for your education than now, as the cost of attending American schools and universities continues to grow.

We have to make sure that we exhaust every resource to ensure our success during these challenging times. Ask your HR Manager, if the company you work for offers tuition reimbursement. Contact business schools to see what scholarship and grant opportunities are available. Remember you have not because you have not. We hope this list will serve you as you prepare to obtain your Online MBA.

Related Resources:

Guide to an Economics Online MBA
Alternatives to an Online MBA

Find Your MBA

Get matched with top online MBA programs now!