Online Degrees in Business

Online degree programs in business are a popular choice for college students. The National Center for Education Statistics (NCES) reports that more degrees are awarded in business than in any other field – at the bachelor’s and master’s level. What's more, the subject has been in this position for at least a decade, showcasing the staying power and versatility of a business degree.

A business degree develops a wide variety of skill sets that can provide broad career options after graduation. Whether a student aims to work as an attorney, accountant, engineer or manager in any variety of professions, a business degree can be a building block for success.

Business degree programs generally include foundational courses in topics such as:

  • Mathematics
  • English
  • Economics
  • Computers

These courses set the stage for more specialized business courses in:

  • Management
  • Marketing
  • Finance
  • Organizational behavior
  • Operations

Students earning either campus-based or online degrees in business can learn to be effective communicators with an ability to lead others, grasp the big picture and make strategic decisions about marketing or budgeting.

Successful students in a business degree program employ their good communication and organizational skills as well as the ability to work well in a team. According to The College Board, students who pay close attention to detail, enjoy problem-solving, are skilled at working with computers and are capable of multi-tasking are good candidates for business degrees.

Popular business degree programs

There are a wide variety of degree programs in the business field. A few of the more prominent specializations include accounting and finance, business support and assistant services, hospitality management, sales and marketing, human resources and management.

The Master's of Business Administration degree (MBA) is a popular advanced degree for individuals who want to further their business education or students from other academic backgrounds who want to gain skills in management or other business specialties. Areas of specialization within the MBA typically mirror those at the bachelor's degree level.

The advantages of earning a business degree online

Today's student can take full advantage of online learning opportunities, whether the plan is to attend school full-time or part-time. For working students, online degree programs in business can offer the needed flexibility to stay at their current positions while also completing a degree.

Online degrees in business require many of the same skills for success that are needed in the business world. Taking courses online is perfect for a self-starter who is disciplined enough to create his or her own schedule and stick to it in order to reach his or her goals. Being able to work independently--and produce good results--is a trait that can also lead to success in a number of business careers.

The business degree can open the door to a wide variety of professions. Options available to those who graduate with business degrees include working as a consultant, market analyst, financial advisor, advertising or promotions manager, public relations expert or sales manager.

Business majors generally can earn comfortable salaries, although wages depend on the job market, area of specialization, employer and geographic region, among other factors. Online degrees in business are both versatile and flexible, helping students gain valuable skills and achieve their career goals.

Occupations In-Demand for Business
Job Openings (2014-24)
Average Salary (2016)
Total Employment
Job Outlook (2014-24)
Office and Administrative Support Occupations5,657,100$37,26022,026,0802%
Sales and Related Occupations5,357,800$40,56014,536,5305%
Retail Sales Workers3,641,400$25,2508,791,7505%
Management Occupations2,586,800$118,0207,090,7906%
Business and Financial Operations Occupations2,191,700$75,0707,281,1908%
Retail Salespersons1,917,200$27,1804,528,5507%
Information and Record Clerks1,798,600$34,3705,630,8107%
Business Operations Specialists1,204,500$71,8404,629,8107%
Other Management Occupations1,116,200$97,4802,267,6105%
Source: 2016 Occupational Employment Statistics and 2014-24 Employment Projections, Bureau of Labor Statistics, BLS.gov.



Digest of Education Statistics, 2015 (NCES 2016-014) Chapter 3, National Center for Education Statistics, U.S. Department of Education, https://nces.ed.gov/pubs2016/2016014.pdf

Major Profile: Business (General), BigFuture, The College Board, https://bigfuture.collegeboard.org/majors/business-business-general, accessed September 2017

With two children and a full-time job, my schedule is very hectic--WGU was put on this earth for me! I was able to submit work when it was convenient for me and work at a pace that best suited me, not the highest person in my class (as I've experienced with many traditional schools). - Carlisha Moore 
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