An online business administration degree program is designed to provide you with a strong foundation in core business functions. Along with a general foundation in business, you can learn about specializations in the field that focus on accounting, finance, human resources, marketing, logistics or international business.

This focus on specialties within business functions is what separates a business administration degree program from a business management degree program. In a business management program you can learn general skills that can help you manage people and projects.

According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, business and financial operations are projected to grow 7 percent from now until 2028. This growth is predicted to add about 591,800 new jobs to the U.S. economy. These statistics suggest that if you wish to pursue an online business administration program you can find employment opportunities after graduation.

Below, we dive deeper into accredited online business administration degree programs and discuss the following:

Frequently Asked Questions

It depends on the program. In some cases, a business administration degree program can be completed entirely online. In other cases, you are required to take some classes on campus in addition to online work. Be sure to do some additional research with prospective schools to determine how much is online and the quality of the program.
Several factors point to a program's strength. First, a strong business administration program online is accredited. Second, it offers a variety of specialties so that you can select one that aligns well with your interests and career goals. And third, it may provide internship placement support and similar services to help you gain hands-on experience and build your resume before graduation.

There are three different types of agencies that may award accreditation to online business administration programs: national, regional, and programmatic. To learn more about the different types of accreditation, the benefits of accreditation, and why accreditation is important, head to our "What is College Accreditation?" page.

National agencies that accredit online business administration programs include the Council for Higher Education Accreditation (CHEA) and the Distance Education Accrediting Commission (DEAC).

Regional agencies that accredit online business administration programs include:

  • Middle States Association of Colleges and Schools
  • New England Association of Schools and Colleges
  • North Central Association of Colleges and Schools
  • Northwest Commission on Colleges and Universities
  • Southern Association of Colleges and Schools
  • Western Association of Schools and Colleges

Programmatic agencies that specifically accredit business programs include the Association to Advance Collegiate Schools of Business (AACSB) and the Accreditation Council for Collegiate Business Schools and Programs (ACBSP).

For a full list of accredited colleges, universities, educational institutions or programs, search your college of interest's credential status on the U.S. Department of Education's website.

Best Online Colleges for Business Administration in 2019-20

Our list includes an overview of each school as well as its accredited online business administration degree programs. We've also highlighted unique features of each school and how it supports online students. These descriptions are intended to help you make educated decisions on the right college and program for you.

Visit our methodologies page to learn more about how we use official data to evaluate schools.


Rowan-Cabarrus Community College

Tuition & Fees
Distance Education Participation
Salisbury, NC
School Type

Rowan-Cabarrus Community College's Focus:

This public community college focuses on workforce development and is committed to student learning outcomes. The college strives to inspire students in increasing their knowledge, developing occupational and technical proficiencies, responding to lifelong learning opportunities and expanding their awareness as responsible citizens.

Featured Online Resource:

The school partners with to offer 24/7 online tutoring service to students. Its tutoring service also allows RCCC students to access study tools and lessons, test prep materials and instructional videos.

Business Administration at Rowan-Cabarrus Community College.

Associate in Applied Science Degrees

  • Students can choose from a business administration marketing or a general business administrative path
  • Those who pursue the online associate in business administration program are required to take financial accounting and introduction to business courses


  • The focus is on general business subjects such as marketing and economics as well as social and behavioral sciences courses in topics like American history,archaeology and international relations
  • Required core classes include principles of management, principles of financial accounting and introduction to computers


  • Business administration customer service, entrepreneurship, computing, and human resource certificates can be earned
  • This program focuses more on specific courses like compensation and benefits and social media marketing and less on general business administration courses such as accounting

Central Texas College

Tuition & Fees
Distance Education Participation
Killeen, TX
School Type

Central Texas College's Focus:

This open-admission, two-year institution welcomes students from all walks of life. They offer accessible and quality educational opportunities that support a diverse student population and promote student success, completion and employability.

Featured Online Resource:

The Teaching Learning Center (TLC) can support students with their research and writing needs. Through the TLC, students can participate in various online seminars and workshops.

Business Administration at Central Texas College

Associate of Science Degree in Business Administration

  • The first year of the program focuses on core business topics including business principles, composition and macroeconomics.
  • The second year looks at more in-depth subjects such as financial accounting, federal and state government, principles of managerial accounting and the creative arts.

American Public University System

Tuition & Fees
Distance Education Participation
Charles Town, WV
School Type

American Public University System's Focus:

This private online school emphasizes educating the nation's military and public service communities by offering, relevant, accessible, affordable and student-focused online programs that prepare students for service and leadership in a diverse, global society.

Featured Online Resource:

A program called ClearPath helps mentees find the right mentor for them. Through ClearPath, a student's mentor can help guide and motivate them to accomplish their academic and professional goals.

Business Administration at American Public University System

Associate of Arts in Business Administration

  • Credits earned through this program can be applied toward a business administration bachelor's degree program or any other related business program
  • Required courses include principles of supervision, personal finance and application software integration
  • One natural sciences course like introduction to biology or introduction to geology must be completed

Bachelor of Business Administration

  • Concentrations available include general business,business analysis,data analysis,economics,small business management,information technology management,international business and marketing
  • A capstone paper or project is required at the end of the program so that students can apply their studies to a real-world scenario
  • Minors such as marketing,management,psychology and sustainability studies can be added to any bachelor of business administration degree

Palo Alto College

Tuition & Fees
Distance Education Participation
San Antonio, TX
School Type

Palo Alto College's Focus:

This public community college is one of the five colleges in the Alamo Colleges District. The school offers online programs by partnering with the Virtual College of Texas (VCT).

Featured Online Resource:

Students can participate in the S.H.A.R.E. Center's Service Learning program, which encourages online students to engage and strengthen the local communities by giving them the opportunity to apply academic theories in real-world scenarios.

Business Administration at Palo Alto College

Administrative Assistant Associate in Applied Science

  • Introduces students to a variety of business-related subjects and technologies so they can manage responsibilities and stay organized in the workplace
  • Prepares students for positions such as administrative support professionals or office supervisors
  • Many courses relate to technologies such as spreadsheets, word processing and graphics software

Administration Assistant Level 1 Certificate

  • Studies culminate in an entry - level certificate for students beginning their business studies
  • Courses include team building, customer relations and communications
  • The program offers a special course called job search skills that focuses on helping students land their first job in a business environment

General Office Level 1 Certificate

  • First level of training for students interested in working in the field of administrative support
  • Focuses on advanced training in computer technology
  • Upon completion,students may pursue entering the workforce or move into the Administrative Assistant Associate in Applied Science degree program

Wayne Community College

Tuition & Fees
Distance Education Participation
Goldsboro, NC
School Type

Wayne Community College's Focus:

This public college offers an open-door admission policy to students who hope to earn a diploma, certificate or associate degree.The school's college transfer advising department helps students transfer seamlessly to four-year colleges and universities.

Featured Online Resource:

The Online Writing Center supports students through their writing process,helping with grammar,organizing and developing papers and word processing software.

Business Administration at Wayne Community College

Associate in Applied Science Degree in Business Administration

  • A work-based learning option is available for students who wish to combine their curriculum with practical work experience
  • Placement tests are required to determine the entry-level courses that meet the needs of students
  • Professional electives such as payroll accounting, project media and social media for office professionals are required

Associate in Applied Science Degree in Office Administration

  • Prepares students for office finance,legal office,virtual office,customer service and office software responsibilities
  • Upon completion,students may be eligible to sit for certification exams related to office administration
  • Capstone course allows students to apply their studies to real-world scenarios

Great Basin College

Tuition & Fees
Distance Education Participation
Elko, NV
School Type

Great Basin College's Focus:

This community college offers student-centered, post-secondary education to rural Nevada. Educational, cultural and related economic needs of the multicounty service area can be met through programs of university transfer, applied science and technology, business and industry partnerships, developmental education, community service and student support services in conjunction with certificate and degree programs.

Featured Online Resource:

Student Online Workshops can help students achieve their academic goals by focusing on building healthy study habits, test-taking tips, relieving test anxiety and surviving finals week.

Business Administration at Great Basin College

Certificates of Achievement - General Business

  • A one-year program that can provide students with specific job skills
  • The program can also be a first step toward an Associate of Applied Science degree in Business Administration

Associate of Applied Science degree in Business Administration

  • Will take classes from seasoned professionals who have many years of both practical work experience and teaching
  • Developing individuals who recognize their social obligation as business persons
  • Engender a belief that acumen in business is critical for personal and community economic/social success

Morgan Community College

Tuition & Fees
Distance Education Participation
Fort Morgan, CO
School Type

Morgan Community College's Focus:

This member of the Colorado Community College System offers asynchronous courses that can be applied toward certificate programs or associate degrees.

Featured Online Resource:

The Alternate Credit Project is for students who have dropped out of college in the past and would like to finish what they've started. Admission counselors can help these students figure out which previous courses are accepted by MCC and how they can return to school.

Business Administration at Morgan Community College

Associate of Applied Science in Business with an Emphasis in Business Administration

  • Incorporates a career communications course which helps students develop the skills they need to obtain and keep a job
  • During the second semester, students have the option of enrolling in a public speaking or interpersonal communication course
  • Unique electives students may choose from include real estate broker,income tax,and introduction to multimedia

Business Office Support Specialist Certificate

  • Prepares students with the skills they need to succeed in the administrative work environment
  • Courses focus on soft and technical skills
  • Prerequisite course is computer keyboarding

Business Supervision Certificate

  • Focuses on entry-level supervision skills and knowledge to help students in the workplace
  • Internship component where students gain practical work experience and work under an experienced professional in a business environment

Northwest Technical College

Tuition & Fees
Distance Education Participation
Bemidji, MN
School Type

Northwest Technical College's Focus:

This public technical college, part of the Minnesota State Colleges and Universities System, has a Success Coaching Team that includes several industry experts who can guide students through their academic life and give them a head start into the professional world.

Featured Online Resource:

NTChelps online students succeed by being available for their questions and concerns 7 days a week

Business Administration at Northwest Technical College

Administrative Associate of Applied Science Degree

  • Prepares students for careers as administrative assistants,executive secretaries or office assistants
  • Part of the degree credits can be used toward the Bachelor of Science (B.S.) in business administration at Bemidji State University while all of it can be applied at Mayville State University

Business Associate of Applied Science Degree

  • Prepares students for a diverse range of positions in the business world
  • Students are required to complete two certificates within the degree program
  • Certificate options include accounting, administrative business specialist, computer support, human resources, sales marketing and management entrepreneurship

Administrative Support Diploma

  • Prepares students with the knowledge and skills required to successfully support management in a professional office setting
  • Coursework focuses on customer relations and bookkeeping
  • Graduates can transfer to NTC's A.A.S. Administrative Assistant program

Administrative Business Specialist Certificate

  • Focuses on bookkeeping,financial information,customer relations and business communications
  • Courses can be applied toward a diploma or Associate of Applied Science(A.A.S.) degree

Park University

Tuition & Fees
Distance Education Participation
Parkville, MO
School Type

Park University's Focus:

This is a four-year, private, nonprofit, liberal arts institution that's mission can be summed up in their motto, fides et labor(Latin for "faith and work"). More than 16,500 students worldwide pursue their Park education at one of their 41 campuses in the U.S. or online around the globe.

Featured Online Resource:

Their Online Learning Resources program provides students with online videos and other materials to help with note-taking tips, test anxiety, study tips and much more.

Business Administration at Park University

Bachelor of Business Administration Degree

  • Available concentrations include financial management, logistics, marketing, international business and human resources
  • Those who choose a finance concentration can sit for the Certified Financial Planner Exam after graduation
  • The 4+1 MBA program allows undergrads to take graduate courses that count toward the completion of an MBA

Sinclair Community College

Tuition & Fees
Distance Education Participation
Dayton, OH
School Type

Sinclair Community College's Focus:

Sinclair, a public community college, offers specialized and technical areas of study that are in high demand in the Dayton region. The college has flexible course schedules and options that can match the student's lifestyle.

Featured Online Resource:

The school's Career Advising program, part of their Academic Advising Center, helps students identify their values, skills and interests to lead them to an academic program and career path that suits them best.

Business Administration at Sinclair Community College

Associate of Science in Business Administration

  • Allows students to seamlessly transfer to a public four-year college or university in Ohio and pursue a bachelor's degree in business administration online or on campus

One - Year Business Technical Certificate

  • It 's designed to prepare non-business students for transferring into a four-year business program or an online MBA program
  • Teaches students the skills and knowledge they need to successfully communicate business concepts to others in both written and oral formats
Source: Integrated Postsecondary Education Data System (IPEDS) 2018-19, National Center for Education Statistics,

Business Administration Program Overview

For an online bachelor's degree in business administration you should have excellent verbal and written communication skills, critical thinking skills and time management skills. In addition, it can be important for you to want to work with others in a team environment.

You should also enjoy writing essays as well as working on and presenting group projects as bachelor's incorporate both of these elements.

Earning an Online Bachelor's Degree in Business Administration

How Long Does an Online Bachelor's Degree Program in Business Administration Take?

In most cases, it takes about four years to earn an online bachelor's in business administration. However, there are certain accelerated programs that can be completed in two or three years. Typically, you'll need about 120 course credits to complete your online bachelor's degree program in business administration.

What Are the Requirements to Start a Bachelor's Degree Program in Business Administration?

Although admission requirements vary from school to school, most programs require that you hold a high school diploma or GED. You can also transfer from another accredited educational institution as long as you are in good standing and have a minimum GPA of 2.0.

Why Earn a Bachelor's in Business Administration?

If you pursue a bachelor's degree program in business administration online you can select a specialization that aligns with your unique strengths, interests and career goals. Compared to other degree programs, an online bachelor's in business administration is flexible in that it can give you the opportunity to pursue various career paths after graduation. It can prepare you to work in various entry-level to mid-level positions in a plethora of business fields such as accounting, finance and marketing.

Degree Timeline

Take general education courses:

Most online bachelor's in business administration degree programs begin with general education courses such as English, college algebra and psychology.

Choose a specialization and take relevant courses:

Once you have selected a specialization like accounting or marketing, you'll take coursework that heavily focuses on it.

Complete a business capstone project:

The business capstone project often involves a presentation or essay on a business-related challenge. It is usually completed at the end of a degree program.

Participate in an internship:

An internship may be required before graduation so that you can gain meaningful work experience before you begin applying for jobs.

Common Courses

  • 1.Common Courses
    • Business law
    • Business communications
    • Principles of finance
    • Financial accounting
    • Business statistics
    • Economics
    • Principles of marketing
    • Principles of management
  • 2. Common Careers:
    • Accountant
    • Financial analyst
    • Marketing coordinator
    • Event planner
    • Sales representative
    • Assistant buyer
    • Human resources assistant
    • Operations research analyst

To learn more about MBAs, visit our graduate page

Complementary Fields of Study

There are several fields of study that may benefit you if you're pursuing a business administration program online. While some of these can be pursued as double majors, others can be studied as minors or individual courses to take in addition to your major.

Healthcare Management

Healthcare management focuses on the business side of healthcare, such as tasks like budgeting, scheduling and discovering new ways to improve patient care. Many schools offer healthcare management as a specialty in their online business administration degree program at the undergraduate and graduate level. This specialty can allow you to take courses such as healthcare delivery systems and healthcare operations management in addition to those in a traditional business administration program.

Business Management

Business management relates to managing the day-to-day operations of a business such as organizing teams and tasks, planning projects and understanding how various functions contribute to the bottom line. Essentially, it's about managing people and processes.

You can minor in business management or specialize in it along with your business administration degree online without too much extra work as business management courses such as logistics, communications and decision-making are similar to many business administration courses.

Nonprofit Management

The goal of nonprofit management is to use effective leadership and financial management to improve a nonprofit organization. If you're interested in nonprofit management you can opt for an undergraduate or graduate business administration program that offers this subject as a specialty or minor. You'll likely take courses such as grant writing and social entrepreneurship in addition to your core courses like accounting and business law.

IT Management

IT management refers to selecting, installing and maintaining technology in business environments. If you hope to use technology to help a business meet its goals, you may want to pursue an IT management field of study.

If you specialize in or minor in IT management, you can expect to take courses that aren't typically seen in a traditional business administration program. These include Introduction to IT, Information Systems Management and IT Applications in Business.

Career Outlook for a Business Administration Degree

According to the National Center for Education Statistics, 122,000 associate degrees in business, 381,000 bachelor's degrees in business, and 187,000 graduate degrees in business were awarded in 2016-17. These numbers continue to grow every year, making business-related careers quite competitive.

Despite the competitive business career landscape, there are a plethora of career options available if you wish to pursue a business administration degree program online. These careers can be in the for-profit, nonprofit and public sectors.

Here are some of the most common careers in business administration you may begin after graduation. We'll discuss the requirements of each one as well as its job duties and responsibilities so you can determine your ideal career path.

Sales Managers

Job Duties:

Sales managers are responsible for leading and directing a team of sales people. They set sales quotas and goals, design sales plans, analyze sales data and monitor customer preferences to determine how to focus an organization's sales efforts. Sales managers should have good problem-solving abilities.

Expected Qualifications:

Most sales managers hold at least a bachelor's degree and certifications such as Certified Professional Sales Person (CPSP) or Certified Inside Sales Professional (CISP).

Management Analysts

Job Duties:

The goal of management analysts is to help improve the efficiency and profitability of an organization. They are often called management consultants and focus on recommending new systems, procedures, or organizational changes and analyzing data related to revenue, expenses and employment reports. Many of them specialize in areas like healthcare or telecommunications.

Expected Qualifications:

Management analysts often hold a bachelor's degree, but some have an MBA and/or the CMC Certified Management Consultant (CMC) designation as well. They must recertify the CMC designation every three years.

Administrative Services Managers

Job Duties:

Administrative service managers plan and coordinate various services that support an organization. For example, they may manage and monitor records, supervise administrative employees and set goals and deadlines. They may also oversee the maintenance and repair of machinery and equipment and ensure compliance with federal and state regulations.

Expected Qualifications:

A bachelor's degree is usually required for someone to land a position as an administrative service manager. Some companies value candidates who also hold a Facilities Management Professional (FMP) certification and the Certified Facility Manager (CFM) certification from the International Facility Management Association.

Human Resources Managers

Job Duties:

Human resources managers are the link between the employees and management of an organization. They oversee recruiting, interviewing and hiring and collaborate with top executives on strategic planning initiatives. Their support can help organizations ensure that their employees are being used efficiently.

Expected Qualifications:

Although an accredited business administration degree is often the minimum education requirement for human resources managers, many organizations value certifications from the Society for Human Resource Management (SHRM), HR Certification Institute (HRCI), WorldatWork or International Foundation of Employee Benefit Plans.

Medical and Health Services Managers

Job Duties:

Also known as healthcare administrators or healthcare executives, medical and health services managers focus their efforts on planning, directing and coordinating the business activities of healthcare providers. Common responsibilities of these professionals include managing finances, staying up-to-date with healthcare regulations, creating work schedules and representing the facility on governing boards. They can be seen in various healthcare environments such as hospitals, nursing homes and doctor's offices.

Expected Qualifications:

Graduate degrees are common for medical and health services managers. Certifications from the Professional Association of Health Care Office Management or American College of Health Care Administrators are widely seen as well.

Business Administration Professional Certifications and Exams

Project Management Professional (PMP)

The PMP shows that you are well-versed in initiating, planning, executing, monitoring and closing projects.

  • Requirements: Hold a minimum of three years of project management experience, and spend at least 4,500 hours leading projects
  • Exam format: 200 multiple choice questions
  • How long does the certification last? Three years

Lean Six Sigma Green Belt Certification

The Lean Six Sigma Green Belt certification can educate you on how to reduce waste and increase an organization's efficiency.

  • Requirements: Have at least three years of paid, full-time work experience
  • Exam format: 100 questions, closed book, proctored exam
  • How long does the certification last? No expiration date

Certified Professional Sales Person (CPSP)

The CPSP certification demonstrates that you know how to shorten sales cycles, overcome objections effectively, create sales habits that help you stand out and close more sales.

  • Requirements: None
  • Exam format: Six week online course
  • How long does the certification last? No expiration date

The Society for Human Resource Management Certified Professional (SHRM-CP)

The SHRM-CP is for you if you're interested in human resources and want to prove that you have the knowledge and skills to handle many of the common human resources challenges in the business world.

  • Requirements: A bachelor's degree and one year in a human resource role or a graduate degree and current employment in human resources
  • Exam format: 160 questions on the computer, 4 hours long
  • How long does the certification last? Three years

Professional Organizations

Professional organizations can connect you with prospective employers, enhance knowledge of your specialty and learn from others.

Known as the largest marketing association in North America, AMA members can network with local marketers, receive discounts on national and local AMA events, access live webinars on various marketing topics and more.
AMA helps members stay up-to-date on the ever-evolving business world. There are a number of benefits available to members such as seminars, quarterly research papers, exclusive web content and invitations to podcasts and special events.
AFP is for finance and treasury professionals who would like to advance their careers and add value to their organizations. Its member benefits include networking opportunities, access to research reports, seminars and webinars and a global career center with job and internship postings.
SHRM is the world's largest HR membership association that is dedicated to serving the needs of HR professionals. Members can "Ask an HR Advisor" every time they have an HR question, use thousands of customizable templates, forms, and presentations, and receive alerts on state, local and federal employment laws.

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