*Bureau of Labor Statistics, U.S. Department of Labor, Occupational Outlook Handbook, Compensation and Benefits Managers, on the Internet at https://www.bls.gov/ooh/management/compensation-and-benefits-managers.htm (visited March 24, 2022).
A bachelor’s degree in business administration requires four years of full-time attendance. The coursework requires a typical amount of about 120 credit hours in total. The usual division of course work consist of about 30 credit hours in business administration, 15 hours in electives, and 15 hours in a minor field of study. Part-time attendance can add one to two years for completing the degree. Online students frequently maintain full or part-time jobs and have businesses or significant family or personal obligations. Part-time online degrees can take six years or longer.
The costs of a bachelor’s degree in business administration will depend on the school, the policy towards in-state rates for residents, and the cost of living for on-campus students. The below-listed items describe the average tuition costs for attendance at public and private four-year colleges and universities.
In addition to tuition, students must pay living expenses generally described as room and board. These include housing, food, local transportation, and incidental expenses. In-state and out-of-state public-school students average about $10,800 per year; private four-year schools average a higher amount at $12,210.
It is important to align the choice of school and program with the student’s job and career goals. While some students seek a BA in Business Administration to gain knowledge, many others have general or specific career goals. The choice of school and program can contribute to those goals. An initial question concerns the available major fields of study. Business administration is a broad category; the sub-fields represent major subject areas such as accounting, finance, management, human resources, and entrepreneurship.
Students should carefully review the school’s majors and course offerings to determine that there are enough courses of the type needed to enhance the student’s career plans and goals.
The National Center for Education Statistics is a leading source of information on student outcomes. One of the metrics they gather is the average graduation rate. College cost estimates use the four-year graduation as standard. When students do not graduate in four years, or “on time”, the cost of education rises dramatically as each year adds another round of tuition, fees, and living expenses. It is useful to note that online students often pay far less in living expenses by living at home while attending online.
At private institutions, the four-year graduation rate is 53%. At public institutions, the four-year rate is 35%. The six-year rate for private schools is 65.6% and the six-year graduation rate for public schools is 58.6%.
Accreditation is an essential part of the value of a degree. Employers, educational institutions and other reviewers look for assurance of quality education. Regional accreditation of the institution and the particular program ensures high-quality education.
There are two main types of accreditation; they are national and regional. Beyond the regional accreditation level, there are institution-wide and program-specific accreditations. The ideal combination is to select a school with regional institutional accreditation and enroll in a program with regional programmatic accreditation.
Many colleges and universities offer programs to help students and alumni get jobs and start careers after graduation. This type of assistance is valuable and should be a factor in selecting a school and program. A school or college may appear to be a complete community; it is also part of a larger community of corporate sponsors, research partners, alumni, business supporters, and local and national affiliates.
Colleges and universities also enjoy reputations built on the success of their graduates as leaders in the business world. If a school incorporates this wider community into a job placement and job counseling system, then students can receive tremendous advantages when searching the job market and getting opportunities for internships and hires.
The value of a degree in business administration is not limited to the increased level of skills, capabilities, and knowledge gained from courses and internships. The value of a degree also rests upon the rating, accreditation, and reputation of the school and program. The rating and accreditation can affect the range of jobs available and the income level they would produce.
As discussed above, regional accreditation is the most widely accepted type of accreditation. Regional accreditation demonstrates quality education that meets the rigorous standings applied to an entire region of the US. The best combination is a business school with regional accreditation for the institution and program accreditation for the business program. Employers pay top salaries for graduates from schools that offer the best guarantee of quality education. Further, many careers will benefit from a good start in the job market, and degrees from accredited schools have wide acceptance and respect from employers; they offer a better opportunity for a first hire than non-accredited schools.
Business administration degrees from accredited schools have wide acceptance and respect from employers, recruiters, and other educational institutions. Program accreditation for business schools has the highest level of benefit for business students. Many employers look for the type of accreditation that the applicant’s school maintains. Program accreditation means that the business programs rank high in the entire region or even nationally. The below-listed items describe the leading programmatic-accreditation agencies for business education.