Best Online Construction Management Programs of 2021

We've ranked the top online bachelor's in construction management programs. Compare schools by cost and convenience and earn your bachelor's degree online with an accredited construction management program.

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by Staff Writers
Published on December 23, 2021

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A bachelor's in construction management program can prepare students to take the lead at every stage of the construction process. The program typically requires 120 credits and takes four years to complete, but some online bachelor's in construction management programs may offer a two-year degree completion option for those with previous college credits.

People who earn this degree have multiple career options, but many choose to become construction managers. According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS), construction managers earn a median annual salary of $97,180. Furthermore, the BLS projects 11% job growth for these professionals between 2020 and 2030.

Find out what you can expect from top online schools and online construction management programs and how to choose a program that is right for you.

What Can I Expect From an Online Bachelor's in Construction Management Program?

In general, students who enjoy spending time on a job site and have an aptitude for business management do well with construction management. The program typically requires 120 credits, including both general education coursework and major classes. Some schools also require students to take related courses in areas like economics or accounting.

Construction management focuses heavily on math, science, and engineering. Students also delve into safety regulations, project management, and sustainability. Some courses require lab work as well as a capstone experience or internship.

Online programs in construction management typically do not require any in-person attendance or residency. Construction management programs typically do not offer separate concentrations, but they may allow students to choose electives or interdepartmental courses to match their specific interests.

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Featured Online Programs

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

What Courses Will I Take in an Online Bachelor's in Construction Management Program?

Construction Materials and Methods

This course introduces popular types of construction materials, including their properties and common uses. It also explores the typical sequencing of a construction project and may provide an introduction to commonly used construction equipment.

Soils in Construction

This lab course teaches students about common soil types and how they can affect construction. Students also learn how best to deal with problems, such as nearby sinkholes and unusually dry and dusty conditions, based on the unique characteristics of the specific soil type.

Construction Scheduling

In this course, students learn how to perform time estimates, plan construction projects, and schedule projects appropriately. This course also covers delays and what to do to get a delayed project back on track.

Construction Accounting and Finance

This course focuses on accounting and finance principles as they relate to the construction field. Students delve into topics like cash flow, time value, depreciation, and payment processing.

Cost Estimating and Bidding

In this course, students learn to break down complex construction projects into their component parts and estimate the costs for each component. They explore how to prepare a bid sheet and how to deal with cost overruns.

What Are Admission Requirements for an Online Bachelor's in Construction Management Program?

In most cases, online admission requirements for construction management programs mirror those for on-campus students, though this may vary by school. In addition to the requirements detailed below, some schools offer or require placement exams, which may exempt students from certain general education courses.

Application

All prospective students must complete an application. The length and depth of the application vary widely by school, with more competitive colleges generally asking for more information. At minimum, students should expect to list their full name, address, date of birth, high school graduation date, grade point average, and extracurricular activities.

Test Scores

Many colleges still require potential students to take college entrance exams such as the SAT or ACT, although more schools now make standardized testing optional. Students considering applying to a test-optional school should note that some of these schools look for a strong academic record to prove college readiness. If you are in doubt, doing well on an entrance exam could strengthen your overall application.

Letters of Recommendation

Most schools require at least one letter of recommendation. These typically come from teachers at the applicant's previous school, but those who have been out of school for a long time may ask a supervisor, mentor, or a volunteer coordinator. Letters of recommendation rarely ensure admission on their own, but they can help schools decide between similar candidates.

Essays

Application essays serve two main purposes. They show off prospective students' writing skills and they help admissions officers get to know applicants a bit better. Common topics include coping with adversity, future goals, and changing ideas or beliefs.

Official Transcripts

First-time college students must submit official high school transcripts. Those with college credits should also submit college transcripts, even if they have only completed a few classes. Transfer credits can reduce the number of courses that the student must take and even shorten the time to graduation. Two-year degree completion programs may be available for those with a significant number of transfer credits.

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

Career Outlook

According to the BLS, construction managers make a median wage of $97,180 per year, with 11% projected job growth between 2020 and 2030. While construction management degree-holders may choose a different career, the outlook remains strong.

Salary potential and job market projections compare favorably to other undergraduate degrees. Construction management degree-holders may also go into related fields like facilities management or sustainability consulting.

Career Paths

Construction Manager

Construction managers are responsible for both small-scale and large-scale construction projects from start to finish. Duties include cost estimating, planning, hiring subcontractors, overseeing and reporting on progress, ensuring legal compliance, and solving any issues that arise. Construction managers collaborate closely with other professionals, including architects.

Median Annual Salary: $97,180

Facilities Manager

Facilities managers are responsible for all aspects of a company's buildings and grounds, along with related supplies and equipment. Duties include planning and overseeing renovations; recommending upgrades for efficiency or code compliance; and managing a team of groundskeepers, maintenance workers, and janitorial staff.

Median Annual Salary: $98,890

Sustainability Consultant

A sustainability consultant works with companies to help them implement more environmentally friendly materials and processes. Sustainability consultants may work on new construction projects in the planning phase, helping corporations gain tax credits for green initiatives and avoid cap and trade penalties for carbon emissions.

Average Annual Salary: $68,100 (according to Payscale data from December 2021)

Construction Cost Estimator

Construction cost estimators focus specifically on the financial aspects of construction projects. They use blueprints and technical documents to understand the project and then create detailed estimates based on materials and labor costs. They use sophisticated processes and software to consider potential effects. Cost estimators may also suggest project timelines.

Median Annual Salary: $66,610

Building Inspector

Building inspectors make sure that buildings meet all relevant codes, are structurally sound, and are safe overall. Building inspectors generally work for the local government, inspecting both new construction and remodels. They may also work privately, inspecting buildings for potential purchasers to uncover any hidden issues before completing the sale.

Although the position does not always require a degree, some companies allow applicants to substitute a degree for some of the otherwise extensive required work experience.

Median Annual Salary: $62,860

Construction Management Not For You? Check Out These Related Careers.

Continuing Education

Although not always necessary, some students choose to go on to earn a master's degree in construction management. Earning an advanced degree could open up additional opportunities for raises or promotions.

A master's degree could also be helpful when trying to switch to a different career focus. For example, if a student has experience primarily in cost estimating, but they want to become a facilities manager, earning a master's degree could help make the student more competitive.

How Do I Choose an Online Bachelor's in Construction Management Program?

Cost

The cost of a bachelor's in construction management varies widely. In general, in-state tuition costs less than out-of-state tuition. Online programs tend to be less expensive than on-campus programs, but not always. Some schools charge higher tuition rates and tack on technology fees for distance learners. Prospective students should add up the true costs of both programs before making a decision.

Program Format

Prospective students must consider program format when comparing online bachelor's in construction management options. In a synchronous program, all students in a particular class log in at the same time for live lectures and discussions.

Students in asynchronous programs may watch videos and review course materials at any time before a set deadline. Some programs offer only full-time study, while others provide part-time options. Some online degrees offer an accelerated format that allows students to earn their bachelor's in under four years.

Location

Unlike many degrees, an online bachelor's in construction management typically does not require on-campus requirements. This allows students to choose a program regardless of location. However, some students prefer to live close to campus even when attending courses online.

Many schools allow their online students to use campus facilities, such as the library and cafeteria, and to attend school events. Students seeking a more traditional college experience may prefer this type of arrangement. Others prefer to take a mix of on-campus and online courses.

Accreditation

Accreditation provides national or regional standards that all institutions of higher learning must meet. While there are many different colleges, each with its own policies and traditions, choosing an accredited school ensures that it meets basic educational standards.

Unaccredited schools may offer a spotty education, and credits from an unaccredited institution may not transfer to an accredited school. In addition, students at unaccredited schools do not qualify for federal financial aid.

Student Support

For many students, college-based support programs play a vital role in helping them succeed. Student services vary by school, but often include advising or mentorship programs and alumni networking opportunities. Keep an eye out for career services and internship opportunities, as well as tutoring programs.

Online students should look into which student support services are available to them. Some schools offer extra support for those attending courses online, while others allow online students to access their regular student support programs.

2021 Best Accredited Online Bachelor's in Construction Management Programs

Rankings compiled by the BestColleges Ranking Team

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Everglades University true View School Profile Boca Raton, FL

Everglades University's bachelor's in construction management program prepares graduates for entry-level careers. Major coursework includes OSHA standards, an introduction to sustainability, and construction estimating. All learners also complete a 21-credit minor of their choice.

Alumni have gone on to find work at top employers like Adecco, Lufthansa Cargo, and Lockheed Martin. The university encourages students' academic and career success by pairing each learner with an academic advisor and offering a comprehensive orientation program. Students can also access College Central software.

First-year applicants must submit high school transcripts or GED scores. Students who do not submit SAT or ACT scores must sit for a placement exam. Incoming learners can apply for a variety of institutional scholarships.

Indiana State University true View School Profile Terre Haute, IN

Students who earn ISU's online bachelor's degree in construction management prepare for careers as safety managers and construction superintendents. The curriculum of this program includes courses like ethics in construction, architectural graphics, and environmental control systems. During the program's capstone, students simulate running a construction company and bidding for contracts.

ISU's undergraduate alumni enjoy a 95% job-placement rate. The university's career center provides students with access to Handshake — a software platform that features internships, jobs, and graduate school preparation tips.

First-time college applicants must have a high school diploma, submit standardized test scores, and meet a GPA cutoff. The university awards automatic merit-based scholarships to first-year and transfer students.

National University true View School Profile La Jolla, CA

Aspiring managers who want to learn at an accelerated pace can enroll in NU's bachelor's in construction management program. The degree's four-week courses cover topics like surveying, field inspection and safety, and the legal aspects of engineering. Degree-seekers apply their knowledge and skills in a three-part capstone experience.

NU's career advisors work with students to hone their salary negotiation skills, develop persuasive resumes, and practice interview skills. The university also hosts weekly webinars for distance learners.

New first-year students without ACT or SAT scores take the ACCUPLACER exam. In addition to awarding transfer credit, NU exempts students from taking certain courses if they pass a challenge exam. The university also awards scholarships to active-duty service members and students with financial need.

Colorado State University Pueblo true View School Profile Pueblo, CO

CSU-Pueblo's online bachelor's degree in construction management includes eight-week courses in topics like surveying, statics and structures, and concrete and steel structures. The university rotates online courses each semester so that full-time students can graduate in four years. During the program's senior project, learners create a detailed proposal for a construction management business.

CSU-Pueblo's career center offers coaching appointments, resume critiques, and job-search strategies. These services help nearly 90% of undergraduates begin a full-time or part-time position within six months of earning a degree.

Applicants hear back from the admissions office within two weeks. Prospective transfer students can consult the school's degree audit reporting system to determine which of their credits are eligible for transfer. Distance learners may qualify for merit-based and/or need-based institutional financial aid.

Park University true View School Profile Parkville, MO

Park's bachelor's in construction management blends 36 credits of business courses and 24 credits of construction management courses, including financial management, business law, and construction project management. Students customize the program by completing three electives.

Park provides learners with networking advice, mock interviews, and cover letter assistance. The university also offers virtual workshops that cover communication skills and professionalism in the workplace. Online students can access 24/7 virtual services, including FOCUS — a tool that helps users identify career preferences and strengths.

Park admits new online students at three points each year. Admission requirements include high school or college transcripts. Active-duty military personnel receive a tuition discount of nearly 40%. Park's construction management program is accredited by the Accreditation Council for Business Schools and Programs

Frequently Asked Questions About Bachelor's in Construction Management Programs

Is a bachelor's in construction management worth it? true

Like so much in life, it depends. Those who want to blend their love of being on a job site with a knack for business management often do well with this degree. Unlike many types of business management degrees, a bachelor's in construction management prepares students for jobs that blend office work with field-based duties.

What can I do with a bachelor's in construction management? true

A bachelor's in construction management prepares students for many different careers. Construction managers take responsibility for all aspects of a construction project, from cost estimating through quality assurance. Facilities managers care for a company's buildings and grounds, typically supervising staff and managing redevelopment projects. Sustainability consultants help companies reduce their carbon footprint.

Are construction management majors in demand? true

Yes. The BLS projects 11% job growth for construction managers between 2020 and 2030. This rate eclipses the average projected growth rate for all occupations.

How much money can I make with a bachelor's in construction management?

Salary depends on a variety of factors, including the specific job title, company, and area of the country. However, many bachelor's degree-holders in construction management make close to $100,000 annually.

What are the highest-paying jobs with a bachelor's in construction management?

Construction managers and facilities managers typically make the most money. According to the BLS, construction managers earn a median annual salary of $97,180, while facilities managers make a median salary of $98,890.

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BestColleges.com is an advertising-supported site. Featured or trusted partner programs and all school search, finder, or match results are for schools that compensate us. This compensation does not influence our school rankings, resource guides, or other editorially-independent information published on this site.

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