High-quality, low-budget, alternatives to triple-crown MBAs have never been better. However, the industrial effort employed in marketing below-average, for-profit schools has never been more effective at concealing them. In this thread, I'd love to pool our ideas about the best-value alternatives at different price points.
Naturally, none of these is a better investment than an excellent MBA. A high-quality MBA will increase your lifetime earnings by a huge amount, equal to many years' earnings. Sadly, not everyone is able to make that investment, and many of those who are able to are not prepared to take the risk.
Most of the cheapest triple-crown distance learning MBAs are around $14k to $25k (see below for the OUBS MBA special pricing through Amity, and the Deakin MBA). A weakening pound means that British schools may seem discounted, with past or current FT-ranked business schools at Aston, Bradford, the Open University, Oxford Brookes and RGU around $22k (And Manchester Met and the OU, via Amity, mush less). Illinois's iMBA and Wisconsin's Web MBA are arguably better designed and have a higher value. However, there's a wide range of price points below there.
Sadly, most people don't realize that an MBA from a terrible school, lacking any respected international accreditation, is worse than an alternative business education from a better school, both in terms of educational value and value perception by the most desirable employers. People get seduced by glamourous-sounding foreign schools, many of which are almost unknown in the institution's supposed home city.
Below are some of the better alternatives I know to an unaccredited MBA at a few price points. Affordable options don't stay available for long, so seize the day.
- c. $0 A Coursera specialization https://www.coursera.org/browse/business?facets=skillNameMultiTag%2CjobTitleMultiTag%2CdifficultyLevelTag%2Clanguages%2CentityTypeTag%3ASpecializations%2CpartnerMultiTag%3AUniversity+of+Illinois+at+Urbana-Champaign%2CcategoryMultiTag%3Abusiness%2CsubcategoryMultiTag&sortField=
- The Maryland MBA Micromasters closed in 2021.
- c. $2940 the University of the People MBA (has US national accreditation, which isn't the highest. However, at only 17% more than the MicroMasters I think this is better value) https://www.uopeople.edu/programs/ba/degrees/master-of-business-administration/
- The LSE graduate-entry BSc in management has new pricing, making the graduate track much less attractive than a triple crown MBA.
- $5000 Amity is a private Indian university with US regional accreditation, a fairly high standard. https://amityonline.com/master-of-business-administration-online
- $9000 The high-respected Open University's triple crown accredited Business School has a budget option where tuition is delivered by Amity, a private Indian university with US regional accredition. I think the OU is better respected in the UK than Manchester Met, and has been running one of the largest distance-learning MBAs since the 1980s. It ends with a practice-based capstone rather than a research activity.
- $10,000 Two AACSB-accredited schools have a double-degree programme through UpGrad. Deakin awards an MBA while IMT grants a PGDM: https://www.upgrad.com/gb/mba-imt-deakin-university/
- The AACSB-accredited MBA at Missouri State is now available only for students in the USA. https://outreach.missouristate.edu/online/master-of-business-administration.htm
- c. £14,000 Triple-crown MBA from Manchester Met has had a 25% fee increase but still remains relatively affordable. It ends with a research-based professional project, which could be an advantage for people planning a PhD: https://globalonline.mmu.ac.uk/online-courses/mba-business-administration/
Which schools should I add to this list? Are any of these options less costly in your country?
PS Pricing updated to May 2021.
[Edited by Duncan on Jan 10, 2022]