Online degree programs have become far more popular today compared to in the past, and for good reasons. Studying online has become the top choice for many students today as a result of the COVID19 pandemic with the majority of schools moving as many classes as possible online to keep students safe over the past eighteen months. But even pre-COVID, online study was gaining more popularity and traction as an educational option, providing students with more opportunities compared to in the past and making it easier for them to earn this advanced qualification. Compared to in the past when only traditional classroom-based degree programs were available, aspiring MBA students no longer have to face the choice between giving up working and furthering their education.
However, despite the fact that there are certainly a lot of benefits of getting an MBA online, the truth is that studying for this degree program online can come with some drawbacks of its own. Some students benefit from the structure of a lecture and class timetable and the chance to learn in-person and often struggle when this is lacking when they study online. It often takes a lot of thought, research, and weighing up the options to decide if an online MBA is right for you.
- 1 Is an Online MBA Right for You – Top Factors to Consider:
- 2 Strategies for Success When Getting Your MBA Online:
Is an Online MBA Right for You – Top Factors to Consider:
Before enrolling in an online MBA, it’s important to take some time to determine if this is the right step for your future career. Why Get an MBA at Suffolk University? Suffolk University’s website has more information to help you figure out why it might be ideal for you. Today, there are so many alternative options available to the MBA and you might find that this isn’t the only pathway open to you when it comes to hitting your future career goals. If you are considering the idea of getting an online MBA, weighing up the following factors can help you decide whether or not it’s actually the best decision for your future career.
Is an MBA the Best Choice for Your Career Goal?
It’s a wise idea to spend some time thinking about where you want your future career to go, and if an MBA fits into that. Generally speaking, the MBA is quite a safe educational choice for anybody who wants to advance their business career. In addition, there are several MBA specializations that you can choose from if you know exactly where you want your career to go, have a specific role in mind, and want an education that will prepare you. Consider what the alternatives are, if there are any, and speak to your employer about your future work plans to get their perspective and advice on whether getting an MBA will help you achieve your goals.
Working and Studying at the Same Time:
It’s worth considering your work commitments before you decide if an online MBA is right for you, and what type of program will be the best fit. If you are not in a position where you will be able to take time off work to commit to getting your MBA on-campus full-time, an online program will offer you more flexibility, allowing you to continue working while you study to improve your qualifications and your career. Whether you’re simply not in a financial position to quit your job to get an MBA right now, or are running your own business and can’t just step away to study, getting an online MBA will usually be the most viable option for you in this type of situation.
Paying for Your Online MBA:
Finances are another aspect of getting an MBA that you’ll need to carefully weigh up before you decide if getting an online MBA is the right choice for you. While tuition fees for campus-based and online MBA programs tend to be around the same, you will usually save money with an online MBA because it’s flexible enough for you to continue working so that you don’t lose a lot of income while studying, and you will not have as many associated costs while studying, such as the cost of commuting. Different MBA programs are likely to vary when it comes to how much you pay for tuition, whether or not the program is eligible for scholarships and other types of financial aid, and what your employer is willing to pay for, if you are taking advantage of a workplace tuition assistance program.
Your Personal Circumstances:
Most people will consider their personal circumstances when they decide if an online MBA is going to be the best choice for them. If you want to get an MBA in the near future, it’s worth weighing up the options to decide which one is going to be better suited to you personally based on your current situation. For example, if you’re working full-time, have kids, and have a house to run, then studying for an MBA on-campus might not be the best option for you unless you have been able to put enough money aside to cover your expenses for the duration of your degree program or are lucky enough to be able to rely on your partner’s income. Starting an MBA online might be the best option for most people in these circumstances. However, there are some situations where you might want to consider if enrolling on an online MBA is going to be viable for you right now since you will still need to dedicate a significant amount of your time throughout the week to studying.
Strategies for Success When Getting Your MBA Online:
If you’ve weighed up all the above factors and anything else that’s important to you, it’s time to start planning for your online MBA. Part of this involves determining the steps that you are going to put in place to improve your success and ensure that you get the most from your studies in order to take your career to the level that you want it to be. Before and after you enroll on an online MBA, there are several things that you can do to make sure that you are in a better position to use this qualification to meet your professional goals.
Choose the Right MBA:
First of all, choosing the right MBA program for you to study online is one of the most important parts of preparing. Spend some time thinking about your career goals and research the different MBA programs that are available to determine which one is likely going to be the best fit for you. The general MBA is typically an ideal option if you want to improve your business career in general or if you want to use the qualification to climb up the ladder in your current role and workplace. On the other hand, you might want to consider a more specialized MBA program with a specific concentration if you have a career role in mind and want to focus on getting yourself as well-prepared as possible. Along with this, there are a lot of different factors to consider when it comes to choosing the right business school option for you. Spend some time researching the reputation of the school, find out how long they have been offering the MBA program online, and speak to current and past students to learn more about their experience. Always make sure that the school you want to enroll in is accredited by a suitable independent accrediting body before enrolling.
Work on Your Time Management Skills:
The sooner you are prepared for your MBA in terms of managing your time, the easier it’ll be to complete – especially if you are planning to balance studying and working full-time. Working on your time management skills from as early on as possible will not only help you get the most out of your MBA program, but will also help you develop some of the most important skills that you are going to need in your future career endeavors. Chances are that, as a business professional, you are already good with time management, but there is always some room for improvement and getting an online MBA while working full-time often means that you need to make the most of every minute you get.
Get a Head Start:
Many online MBA programs will allow students to log into the student portal and get access to the learning materials that they will be using once enrolled before the program begins. Once you have finalized everything and have been accepted into the program, it’s always worth seeing if this is possible as it gives you the chance to prepare yourself for the work ahead and get a head start. Along with this, schedule your time for studying in the future so that you’re always starting the assigned work such as essays and projects as early on as possible. Giving yourself plenty of time will help ensure that you minimize your stress levels and stay in control, especially if you’re juggling your online MBA with other commitments.
Get a Set Study Space:
Home offices have become a necessity for many people around the world in the past eighteen months due to the remote working boom that has arisen as a result of COVID19. Whether or not you are working from home currently, however, it’s a good idea to find a space in your home that you can dedicate to studying while you are getting your MBA online. Having a dedicated area in your home makes it easier for you to get in the zone to study and prevents you from coming across distractions that could get in your way. Studying from home can be difficult, even if you live alone, because usually there’s always something around the home that needs doing and when you are on your own, you might not be as motivated to get the work done compared to being in a classroom.
Focus on Networking:
The sooner you begin networking with other students from your online MBA, the better. Studying online is not as anti-social as many people might believe it to be. Despite the fact that you are not in a classroom surrounded by other people, many online schools and programs have set up a lot of different options for their students to meet and get to know one another. In addition, the students themselves might have set up online areas where they can network and socialize such as WhatsApp chats and Facebook groups. If there’s nothing like this currently available for your program, there’s nothing wrong with being proactive and starting one of your own. Since getting an online MBA means that you’re probably going to be studying for your degree alongside influential, knowledgeable and experienced business professionals, networking is key to building a strong professional circle and building relationships with people who might be able to help you in your future career.
Get Practical Support:
Finally, an online MBA can be a very intense program to take on and this can be even harder if you are juggling it with work and other commitments, such as raising a family. Getting as much practical support as possible in place while you are studying will help you get better results and reduce your stress levels, giving you more time to focus on your education. It’s always worth speaking to friends and family members about your plans to see if there is anything that they are willing to do to help you out, even if it’s just an extra few hours of babysitting per week. If possible, consider hiring some help for yourself or paying for services that can make your life easier, such as getting somebody in to clean your home once a week to reduce your workload or signing up for a food box subscription to reduce the amount of time you’re spending preparing and cooking meals for yourself and your family.
Getting an online MBA has become one of the most popular options for people who want to improve their business career prospects. However, before you jump in, it’s important to make sure that it’s the right choice for you and that you are ready for this challenge.