Friday, August 3, 2012

Master of Business Administration Earning Power

By Jacquelyn Doiron

If you are considering an advanced business degree, there are a number of options available. At the top of the list is the Master of Business Administration in all its various forms. It was the first advanced business degree when Harvard introduced it in 1908, and it is still the most prominent. Today, the Master of Business Administration with its many specialization options is taught in a number of different forms from traditional to night classes to online learning.

Before, it was difficult for a normal working person to get a MBA, as the classes, like most college classes, were only offered during the day. Today, lots of people enter the work force directly after college and before their advanced degree. So, it's quite common to see full-time working adults as MBA students. In response, the program in now also offered in a variety of flex plans, including online classes, night classes and accelerated programs.

The program consists of two parts. Core subjects such as capital markets, corporate strategy, and negotiations are taught initially. A specialty in such subjects as international business, human resources, real estate or the like is pursued throughout the second.

Other business degrees have a slight edge within their particular focus, however there is an advantage in the flexibility offered by the MBA. Case in point, the Master of Healthcare Administration is very heavily weighted toward healthcare policy. However, a healthcare specialized MBA encompasses a more robust view of health management by considering business components such as advertising, operations, and risk. Taking into consideration the average adult will have around 7 careers in their lifetime, careful consideration should be taken when choosing between a degree that only has use in one sector versus one that can more easily offer value in multiple arenas.

That Harvard MBA can run you up to $200,000 today, however the average program runs $60,000. Beyond just money, there is also a vast amount of time and energy invested. Some no-name online schools offer the program for as little as $7,000. Other online schools get away with charging a premium. They have a firm grasp of the market value of the convenience of online classes.

Now, there is a payoff attached to that cost. Professionals with an MBA statistically make more than people with identical experience who only have the Bachelor of Business Administration (BBA). For example, in the case of someone with 5 to 9 years of experience, the MBA makes about $17,600 more per year. Plus, just getting an advanced degree is something of which to be proud.

Ultimately, there are options in post grad business education including both choice of degree and the format in which to earn it. Either way, it's a lot of money and time. Looking at all the factors, the MBA offers one thing the other do not - a broad scope of applications. That, in itself, is beneficial. So, unless a person can be absolutely certain that they will never get tired of a career, the MBA is probably the better path over a something like an MHA.

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