What options exist for online MBAs with a focus in marketing? Do any offer financial aid?

Hi there, I received an MBA in Marketing from Pakistan in 2001. It was evaluated in the USA to be the equivalent of an associates degree. I want to get an online MBA in Marketing from the USA. Will I be able get financial aid? I have more than 9 years experience as Business Manager in USA and more than 15 years Sales Manager experience from Pakistan.


Nedda Gilbert, MSW, Educational Consultant, and Author

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There are many options for you to pursue. My one concern would be that having already had your overseas MBA downgraded here in the the United States to that of an associates degree, perhaps you should be pursuing something with more prestige and widespread respect. The two schools in the answer above would well suffice. Of note, UNC - Kenan Flagler is ranked as the #1 online MBA by US News and World Report. It is also a top flight school with big name recognition for its two year traditional, residential MBA program. It does not get much better than that. You would receive a standout education as well as be able to mine the alumni and networks of this prestigious school for job placement. I'm guessing that getting a great job is a primary goal. So as you consider the cost of attending, it would be wise to consider your return on investment as well.

That said, here are two lists for you to consider. The first is a list of some of the top online MBAs for marketing (it is by no means complete). The second is a list of the least expensive online MBAs (likewise, there may be many more out there to consider). As an international student, it may be more difficult for you to access the financial aid a US citizen can, and so I wanted to provide you a list of schools that offer a very cost-effective degree. Again, with any MBA degree, it may be wise to spend some time learning about the perceived value of a degree from an online school among employers.

Top Online MBAs in Marketing (Not in order of rankings) _

Arizona State

Arizona State Online MBA program

Northeastern University

Pepperdine University

University of Virginia - Darden (equally as prestigious as UNC - Kenan-Flagler)

University of North Carolina - Kenan-Flagler

University of Wisconsin, Whitewater - this school won the European CEO Global Business Education Award as the Most Innovative Online Business School

Washington State

Least Expensive Online MBAs

Capella University

Columbia Southern University (may be the best bang for buck at $6360.00 per year)

Colorado Technical University (also strong in marketing)

Kaplan University


Regis University

Regis Online MBA

University of Maryland (also offers a highly respected full-time MBA program)

Walden University

Walden Online MBA

Saint Leo University

Saint Leo Online MBA

Neither of these lists represent all the schools you might consider. But they should give you a strong frame of reference for what's out there, what's well known, and most importantly, what may work best for you.

Michael Schoch, Noodle Intern

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University of Virginia Darden School of Business Distance MBA is an online MBA with both scholarships and financial aid. It is consistently well-rated.

University of North Carolina, Chapel Hill, Kenan-Flagler Business School Distance MBA is another distance MBA that offers a specialization in marketing. The program is called MBA@UNC and on its tuition and financial aid page it provides a detailed explanation of all of its financing options; many of which involve federal loans.

These are just two well-regarded schools that offer financial aid options. For a long list, consult this list of search results on Noodle which includes five pages of online MBA's, all offering a marketing specialization and many of them equipped with some financial aid/scholarship package. Keep in mind that federal aid is often contingent on being a US citizen with some proof of residency; however, many schools offer merit-based scholarships in addition to fellowships for international students. I would recommend creating a list of schools that are most appealing to you and then contacting all of their financial aid offices directly to find out what options and restrictions are in place.

Best of luck!

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