A bachelor's in business is a four-year degree program that helps prepare students for careers in business. Depending on the school, students majoring in business may choose from several concentrations, such as marketing, finance, economics, and human resource management.

The bachelor's in business is one of the most popular bachelor's degrees because it prepares students for various positions in the business world. Possible jobs for business majors include human resources specialist, accountant, investment banker, financial advisor, and business development manager.

According to the National Center for Education Statistics (NCES), the average undergraduate tuition was $16,647 in 2019-20. Some online schools offer lower tuition rates than in-person programs or the same rate to in-state and out-of-state students.

The U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) projects an average growth rate of 8% for business and financial occupations. The median annual salaries for these jobs are $76,570, which is higher than the median for all occupations.

What Can I Expect From an Online Bachelor's in Business Degree Program?

Skills such as multitasking, strategizing, and decision-making may help you succeed at school and in your business career.

An in-person or online bachelor's in business program typically takes about four years to complete and requires 120 credits. Students who want to finish faster should look for an accelerated program or take extra classes each semester or during the summer.

Many colleges and universities offer concentrations within their bachelor's in business programs. Here are some common options:

A bachelor's in business typically includes courses in marketing, accounting, finance, economics, management principles, and business ethics. In addition to business courses, students also take general education courses. The general education requirements often include one or two lab-based science classes.

Some schools offer a bachelor of science (BS) in business administration, while others offer a bachelor of arts (BA) or a bachelor of business administration (BBA). A BA degree may require some foreign language classes, while a BS requires more science courses. A BBA focuses more on business and applied concepts. The BS and BBA degrees are more common than a BA in business administration.

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Popular Online Business Programs

Learn about start dates, transferring credits, availability of financial aid, and more by contacting the universities below.

How Do I Know If an Online Program Is Popular?

Find out how popular an online bachelor's in business is by asking the admissions counselor how many students are in the program. Many program websites also publish student testimonials. You can also find school reviews on sites like CollegeTimes or Unigo.

If you recognize the school’s name, that could indicate that it is somewhat popular, but name recognition does not necessarily translate to popularity. Popular programs have more students, but that might not mean a better learning experience. According to Forbes, the ideal size for online classes is 12 students.

What Courses Will I Take in an Online Bachelor's in Business Degree Program?

Accounting Principles

This course presents basic principles for recording, analyzing, and summarizing financial transactions. Students learn how to make adjustments and close out the records at the end of the period.

Business Ethics

Students study ethical issues in business and how to make ethical decisions. This course covers personal integrity, ethical concepts, company loyalty, and individual conscience.

Principles of Macroeconomics

Principles of macroeconomics introduce the analysis of prices, income, and aggregate employment. This course covers supply and demand, money and banking, and international trade.

Business Finance

This course provides a solid foundation in both corporate business finance and personal finance. Topics include budgeting, checking accounts, computing payroll, and finance.

Principles of Marketing

Students learn how to evaluate the customer's needs and wants to deliver value. The course teaches how to determine target markets and choose the right products and services for those markets.

What Are the Admission Requirements for an Online Bachelor's in Business Degree Program?

The admission requirements for online bachelor's in business programs vary. Popular online business majors might have more stringent requirements, so getting into those programs may be more difficult.

Most schools have the same admission requirements regardless of whether you attend online or in person. We list the most common requirements below, but some schools may have additional requirements, such as work history.

Application

All schools require prospective students to submit an application and a fee. If you are applying to multiple schools, you may save time by using the Common App. This site allows you to manage your applications for over 900 different schools.

Test Scores

Some schools require scores from college entrance exams such as the ACT or SAT. However, others don't require test scores. Generally, the more competitive a program is, the more likely you'll need test scores.

Letters of Recommendation

Most schools require letters of recommendation. If you recently graduated from high school, you can ask your favorite teachers or school counselor for a letter of recommendation. If you've been out of school for a while, you can ask professional contacts, such as your supervisor at work.

Essays

Most schools require a college application essay. This essay is usually short—around 500 words. Some schools provide a topic or theme for the essay. Others ask that you write about why you would make a good candidate for the program. Your college application essay gives you a chance to let your personality shine.

Official Transcripts

You'll need to submit your official high school and college transcripts. Alternatively, you can show proof of a GED diploma or equivalent. If you have previous college credits and are transferring to a new school, the school will evaluate your transcripts to award transfer credits.

What Can I Do With an Online Bachelor's in Business Degree?

Career Outlook

A bachelor's in business degree prepares students for a wide variety of jobs in many different industries. The BLS reports that the median salary for all business and financial occupations was $76,570 in May 2021, higher than the $45,760 for all occupations. The employment projection for this sector is 8% from 2020-2030, which is average.

The bachelor's in business is the most popular college major. Graduates can pursue business roles that pay well. The median salary ranges from $49,470 to $94,170, depending on the position. Business program graduates may work in a variety of industries, including manufacturing, professional or technical services, government, and insurance.

Graduating from a popular online business program might increase a candidate's chances in the job market due to name recognition.

See where a bachelor's in business degree can take you. Learn more about business careers.

Career Paths

Human Resources Specialists

Human resources specialists recruit new employees for their employers. They screen and interview applicants and assign new hires to their jobs. They consult with managers to determine what employees are needed and what skills they should have. They check applicants' references, run background checks, and help with employee orientation.

Median Annual Salary: $62,290

Purchasing Managers, Buyers, and Purchasing Agents

Purchasing managers, buyers, and purchasing agents purchase the products and services their companies need to run their businesses and manufacture their products. They research the company's suppliers and evaluate their prices, quality, and delivery. They also attend meetings and trade shows to learn about industry trends.

Median Annual Salary: $75,410

Accountants and Auditors

Accountants and auditors prepare financial records for their companies. They help the company identify potential opportunities and threats and ensure that all of the company's financial records are accurate. They also file tax returns and ensure that the company pays its taxes on time. They may suggest ways for the company to reduce costs and improve profits.

Median Annual Salary: $77,250

Financial Analysts

Financial analysts help individuals and businesses decide how to invest their money to make a profit. They evaluate the performance of investment vehicles such as stocks and bonds. They consider the individual or company's requirements and recommend the types of investments they should select.

Median Annual Salary: $81,410

Personal Financial Advisors

Personal financial advisors advise individuals to manage their investments, estate planning, insurance, mortgages, retirement, and taxes. They meet with their clients to talk about their goals and answer their questions about their investment options. Personal financial advisors help clients plan to have enough money to reach their goals.

Median Annual Salary: $94,170

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Continuing Education

It's common for people with a bachelor's in business to go back to school to earn their master's in business administration (MBA). Like the bachelor's in business administration, an MBA may offer a variety of concentrations, including entrepreneurship, finance, and international business. Getting an MBA can improve a candidate's chances of moving up to a management position.

MBA graduates may opt to earn a doctorate to advance their careers. They may choose a doctorate in accounting, business administration, marketing, or organizational leadership.

Should I Choose a Popular Online Bachelor's in Business Degree Program?

While popular online business majors may boost students' job prospects due to name recognition, this is not guaranteed. When choosing a college, students should also consider cost, location, and class size. The program's popularity is just one factor to consider.

Additional Program Factors to Consider

Cost

It is important to consider the true program cost when comparing the cost of online and on-campus business programs. You must include all costs, including transportation and lost wages. The average cost of tuition and fees, and room and board was $25,281 per year in 2019-20, according to the NCES. It was $18,837 for public schools and $45,570 for private schools.

Program Format

You should also consider whether the program is synchronous or asynchronous and full time or part time. It may be easier to work and go to school at the same time if you enroll part-time in asynchronous online classes. If you want to finish school quickly, you should look for an accelerated bachelor's in business program.

Location

When deciding whether to go to college online or on campus, check to see whether the online programs you're considering have any in-person requirements. Some schools require you to attend orientation in person or visit campus for labs. If the online program has no in-person requirements, the school’s location is not important.

Accreditation

Schools earn accreditation by allowing third-party agencies to evaluate their curricula, faculty, and graduate outcomes. Institutional accreditation evaluates the entire school, while programmatic accreditation evaluates specific programs. Attending an accredited school ensures employers recognize your degree, you are eligible for federal financial aid, and you can transfer credits to another accredited school.

Student Support

Student support services such as tutoring or reading and math centers can help you get through a difficult class. Many schools offer mentorships, career services, internship services, academic advising, and alumni connections. At some schools, students can access these services online. Consider which student services you might need when choosing a school.

Most Popular Accredited Online Bachelor's in Business Degree Programs

Rankings compiled by the the BestColleges Ranking Team

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#1

Brenau University

School Information
Location Gainesville, Georgia
Admission Rate 58%
Graduation Rate 46%
Instituation Type Private
Accreditation Yes Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges
Percent Online Enrollment 60% Percentage of all students who are enrolled online.

100% Online | Scheduled Classes

Avg. Cost per Credit
In State | $718
Out of State | $718

Credits to Graduate
120

Program Information
Degree Completion Program | No
Program Accreditation | Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges.

Georgia-based Brenau offers a bachelor's in business administration (BBA) for first-year and transfer students. Enrollees receive a broad business education that explores various functional areas. The 120-credit bachelor's in business also covers general education coursework.

The BBA core teaches accounting, marketing, management, and HR management concepts. Students learn about small business management and other skills in the major. The BBA prepares students for entry-level positions in areas such as management and business analysis. 

Admission requires a minimum 2.75 high school GPA for first-year applicants and a minimum 2.0 GPA for transfer students.

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#2

Campbellsville University

School Information
Location Campbellsville, Kentucky
Admission Rate 70%
Graduation Rate 36%
Instituation Type Private
Accreditation Yes Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges
Percent Online Enrollment 77% Percentage of all students who are enrolled online.

100% Online | Scheduled Classes

Avg. Cost per Credit
In State | $410
Out of State | $410

Credits to Graduate
120

Program Information
Degree Completion Program | No
Program Accreditation | International Accreditation Council for Business Education

Located in Kentucky, CU offers an online BS in general business rooted in the school's Christian values. The business degree's general education component covers many liberal arts subjects.

The major teaches principles in marketing, business law, and finance. Enrollees can use free electives for a minor or to pursue their own interests. Learners finish this degree faster by transferring up to 72 credits. First-year applicants must submit SAT or ACT scores, and transfer students submit all college transcripts.

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#3

Liberty University

School Information
Location Lynchburg, Virginia
Admission Rate 51%
Graduation Rate 47%
Instituation Type Private
Accreditation Yes Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges
Percent Online Enrollment 92% Percentage of all students who are enrolled online.

100% Online | Scheduled Classes

Avg. Cost per Credit
In State | $390
Out of State | $390

Credits to Graduate
120

Program Information
Degree Completion Program | No
Program Accreditation | Accreditation Council for Business Schools and Programs

LU's BS in business administration (BSBA) features a highly customizable curriculum.
Students complete the 120-credit degree in 3.5 years on average. The program covers general education courses and basic business concepts. 

Students can pursue a general track or one of 20 specializations. The customization options include healthcare management, financial planning, and marketing analytics. 

LU also offers an online BBA requiring more liberal arts courses than the BSBA. Enrollees pay the same affordable tuition for either degree and receive free electronic textbooks. 

Admission requires a minimum 2.0 GPA and high school or college transcripts.

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#4

Ashland University

School Information
Location Ashland, Ohio
Admission Rate 71%
Graduation Rate 65%
Instituation Type Private
Accreditation Yes Higher Learning Commission
Percent Online Enrollment 51% Percentage of all students who are enrolled online.

100% Online | Scheduled Classes

Avg. Cost per Credit
In State | $575
Out of State | $575

Credits to Graduate
120

Program Information
Degree Completion Program | No
Program Accreditation | Accreditation Council for Business Schools and Programs

AU's online BA in business uses the same curriculum as the on-campus program. The program teaches learners how to perform various business operations duties, including managing staff, data, and finances.

Participants in this online bachelor's in business learn personal asset management skills. A business management minor provides more training. First-year applicants must have a minimum 2.5 high school GPA, and transfer applicants must have at least a 2.25 cumulative GPA.

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#5

Texas A & M University-Commerce

School Information
Location Commerce, Texas
Admission Rate 43%
Graduation Rate 43%
Accreditation Yes Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges
Percent Online Enrollment 65% Percentage of all students who are enrolled online.

100% Online | Scheduled Classes

Avg. Cost per Credit
In State | $739
Out of State | $1,148

Credits to Graduate
120

Program Information
Degree Completion Program | No
Program Accreditation | Association to Advance Collegiate Schools of Business

The BS in business administration at TAMUC is suited for first-year students and transfer students from an accredited college. The degree emphasizes the practical application of business skills.

Students learn business principles like how to develop an entrepreneurial strategy. They study financial statement analysis and international management and business practices.

The required interdisciplinary minor allows students to choose their courses. Admission to this degree requires high school and college transcripts.

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#6

Southwestern Assemblies of God University

School Information
Location Waxahachie, Texas
Admission Rate 88%
Graduation Rate 45%
Instituation Type Private
Accreditation Yes Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges
Percent Online Enrollment 70% Percentage of all students who are enrolled online.

100% Online | Scheduled Classes

Avg. Cost per Credit
In State | $399
Out of State | $399

Credits to Graduate
120

Program Information
Degree Completion Program | No
Program Accreditation | International Accreditation Council for Business Education

A Christian college located in Texas, SAGU offers an online BA in business. Students complete general education studies in various subjects. The major provides training in business law, finance, and management. 

The curriculum also stresses legal and ethical principles business people need to know. All students complete a biblical studies component. Participants study in small online classes that give them more time with professors. 

SAGU cut tuition by 20% to make the online bachelor's in business more affordable. Admission requires a minimum 2.0 high school GPA for first-year applicants.

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#7

Azusa Pacific University

School Information
Location Azusa, California
Admission Rate 67%
Graduation Rate 68%
Instituation Type Private
Accreditation Yes Western Association of Schools and Colleges Senior Colleges and University Commission
Percent Online Enrollment 30% Percentage of all students who are enrolled online.

100% Online or Hybrid | Scheduled Classes

Avg. Cost per Credit
In State | $452-$527
Out of State | $452-$527

Credits to Graduate
120

Program Information
Degree Completion Program | Yes
Program Accreditation | International Accreditation Council for Business Education

APU's bachelor of business administration (BBA) is a degree completion program for working professionals. The 54-unit program gives students practical skills they can apply in the workplace. 

Students can complete this degree entirely online or in a hybrid format. APU offers in-person courses at four convenient locations in California. Topics covered include managerial accounting, HR management, and operations management. 

Students can enhance their knowledge and marketability with microcredentials such as Python or project management. Admission requires at least 15 units of transferable college credit and a minimum 2.0 GPA.

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#8

Maryville University of Saint Louis

School Information
Location Saint Louis, Missouri
Admission Rate 83%
Graduation Rate 71%
Instituation Type Private
Accreditation Yes Higher Learning Commission
Percent Online Enrollment 76% Percentage of all students who are enrolled online.

100% Online | Scheduled Classes

Avg. Cost per Credit
In State | $500
Out of State | $500

Credits to Graduate
128

Program Information
Degree Completion Program | No
Program Accreditation | Accreditation Council for Business Schools and Program

Maryville offers a BS in business administration with several emphasis areas. Enrollees can complete this degree in two years with enough transfer credits. Students receive training in various functions within the business enterprise.

Students study topics like business communications and operations management. The emphasis areas include accounting and cybersecurity. The school charges an affordable flat tuition rate for all enrollees in this popular business degree. Admission requires a high school diploma or GED certificate and a minimum 2.0 GPA for transfer applicants.

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#9

Brescia University

School Information
Location Owensboro, Kentucky
Admission Rate 42%
Graduation Rate 34%
Instituation Type Private
Accreditation Yes Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges
Percent Online Enrollment 43% Percentage of all students who are enrolled online.

100% Online | Scheduled Classes

Avg. Cost per Credit
In State | $425
Out of State | $425

Credits to Graduate
128

Program Information
Degree Completion Program | No
Program Accreditation | Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on College

Brescia offers an online BS in business. Students can transfer up to 86 credits into this popular business degree. Learners can complete the online program in 2-4 years, depending on their prior college credit.

Students receive a well-rounded business education that includes accounting and marketing courses. They learn how to use business software applications and implement management information systems. Admission to this bachelor's in business requires a high school diploma or GED certificate.

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#10

Westfield State University

School Information
Location Westfield, Massachusetts
Admission Rate 87%
Graduation Rate 61%
Accreditation Yes New England Commission on Higher Education
Percent Online Enrollment 41% Percentage of all students who are enrolled online.

100% Online | Scheduled Classes

Avg. Cost per Credit
In State | $340
Out of State | $340

Credits to Graduate
120

Program Information
Degree Completion Program | Yes
Program Accreditation | New England Commission of Higher Education 

Westfield offers a BS in management degree completion program The BS was developed for transfer students from community colleges. Other students may get accepted once they contact the program. The curriculum requires both business coursework and a management core. 

Students choose one of three concentrations: general management, human resources management, or entrepreneurship. Enrollees can earn elective credit for an internship. Admission requires school transcripts and a minimum 2.0-2.5 GPA.

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Frequently Asked Questions About Popular Business Degree Programs

Are popular online bachelor's programs more difficult to get into?

The most popular online business programs usually have the most applicants, so there is more competition for the openings available in the program. You can expect it to be more difficult to get into a program when there are more applicants for that program.

However, if you have good grades, strong test scores, and a solid essay, you may have what it takes to get into one of the most popular online bachelor's in business programs.

What are the most popular college majors?

The five most popular college majors are business, health, social sciences and history, engineering, and biological and biomedical sciences. It's worth noting that business tops the list. A business degree helps prepare students for a wide variety of jobs, and the median pay for business majors is about $30,000 per year, higher than the median for all occupations.

However, you shouldn't choose a college major based on popularity alone. Consider what you want to do for a living and choose the major that will best prepare you for that career.

How should I choose an online degree program?

There are many factors to consider when choosing an online degree program. First, you should check to see if there are any in-person requirements. If so, the location of the program will be very important. Other things to consider are cost, accreditation, program format, and student services.

Consider whether you must log on at a specific time for meetings or lectures and the support services you need are available. If you know you are weak in writing skills, it might help to choose a school that offers writing support.

Are the most popular online programs also the highest quality?

The most popular online programs are often high in quality, but popularity does not guarantee quality. If you are concerned about the quality of a program, you should first check to see if it is accredited. Accreditation is an assurance of a reasonable amount of quality.

If you are worried about quality, look for student testimonials online. Try searching for the school reviews on CollegeTimes or other rating websites. Find graduates on LinkedIn and ask them how satisfied they were with the program.

What jobs can I get with an online bachelor's in business?

Recent graduates can often find jobs as accountants, claims adjusters, cost estimators, human resource specialists, and loan officers. Other jobs for graduates with a bachelor's in business include labor relations specialists, logisticians, market research analysts, and event planners. People with this degree also work as purchasing agents, property appraisers, tax examiners, training and development specialists, and personal financial advisors.

The median income for bachelor's in business graduates ranges from $49,470 per year to $94,170 per year, depending on the job title.

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