Among the many undergraduate majors offered by universities, business remains one of the most popular fields of study, according to the National Center for Education Statistics (NCES). This field attracts learners in part for its versatility and potential earnings after graduation. International business offers students even more opportunities for advancement.
Earning an international business degree online equips graduates with the skills to succeed in roles with large global corporations, ambitious startups, or government organizations as trade compliance officers, marketing professionals, buyers, and managers. According to PayScale, professionals with these degrees earn an average of $54,000 per year.
With a bachelor’s degree in business administration, which may include a concentration in international business, professionals earn an average of $61,000 per year. These graduates typically work as human resources managers, operations managers and financial controllers.
Choosing an Online International Business Program
When choosing online international business degrees, students should take care to select schools that meet all of their needs. Each university offers different benefits, such as low prices, generous transfer policies or accelerated programs. What is essential for one learner may not be as important to another. For example, an associate degree applicant may prioritize schools that allow them to transfer all of their credits. On the other hand, a first-year student may prioritize the least expensive schools. All applicants should take plenty of time to compare their options and find international business degrees online.
International Business Concentrations
In most cases, students earn international business degrees online by majoring in business or business administration and choosing international business concentrations. As such, bachelor’s degrees rarely offer additional specializations in international business. At some schools, students may choose minors in areas such as accounting, marketing or human resources.
How long does it take to earn an international business degree?
Students who start with no college credits and take full-time classes earn an international business degree online in about four years. Most schools require 120 credits for graduation, which include general education, business, and international business concentration courses. However, there are several factors that can influence the amount of time it takes to earn this type of degree. For example, learners with an associate degree often complete their degree in as little as two years if they enroll full time. Some universities also allow adult learners to earn credit for work or military experience.
Accelerated courses can also allow degree candidates to graduate in less time than traditional semesters. With these programs, classes last 8 to 10 weeks at a time, and learners move on to the next semester. Students who choose universities with a traditional semester schedule can take summer courses to graduate quickly. Many schools cap the number of credits around 18 hours per semester.
Online International Business Courses
Online international business degree programs teach students to identify risk management strategies related to the political, legal, financial, business and cultural elements of international business. Students also learn to analyze international business opportunities through cultural, political, legal and economic lenses. Common courses include global financial systems, international management, multinational marketing, international economics, management principles, and international management accounting.
While most aspects of an international business degree are consistent, the length of the program, graduation requirements and program structure vary somewhat. Students may have the opportunity to take courses in an industry or area of interest, depending on the school.
International Business Online Degree Accreditation
Accreditation is perhaps the most important consideration when choosing an online degree program in international business. Schools must be accredited at the institutional level by regional or national agencies. Without either type of accreditation, learners cannot be sure they are receiving a high-quality education. In addition, schools that graduates may consider for graduate programs often do not accept credits from non-accredited schools.
Prospective students should consider schools with regional accreditation rather than those with national accreditation. Regional agencies focus on smaller areas, which gives them more time to thoroughly investigate each school than their national counterparts. In addition, some graduate programs only accept learners with a regionally accredited bachelor’s degree. Business programs can also obtain programmatic accreditation from business-specific organizations, such as the Association to Advance Collegiate Schools of Business (AACSB), the International Assembly for Collegiate Business Education (IACBE), and the Accreditation Council for Business Schools and Programs (ACBSP). These organizations ensure that member schools teach best business practices.
The U.S. Department of Education (ED) does not directly accredit schools. Instead, the department grants third-party organizations the right to analyze schools and grant these accreditations. These organizations then issue programmatic, national, or regional accreditation based on their approvals. Both the schools and the accrediting organizations are members of the Council for Higher Education Accreditation. This non-governmental organization advocates for high educational standards and policies that benefit its members. Students who want to be sure they are attending accredited schools can visit the ED website for a database of recognized accrediting organizations. This allows students to avoid relying on misleading credentials.