Saturday, June 26, 2010

The Best Online MBA Schools (AACSB) for 2010 Part Eighteen: Summary Review, Methodology and Advice to MBA Candidates

If you’re still reading this, please accept my apologies for its length (18 parts!) and breadth. My intention was to not only present a relatively objective review of the AACSB’s accredited online MBA programs on consistent measures which you can check for yourself, but also to show the impact of each category upon the whole, and by showing the top schools in each category, to introduce schools not only in sum but also which perform well in selected areas. Some of the ranked schools stood out over and over again, while others were not at the top, but always did well enough to stay in the chase.

I’d like to take the time here to go over the top 25 programs again, looking at their key focus and why you should consider them. I will follow that section with a review of my scoring methodology, so anyone interested can tally up, weight and calculate scores on their own standards. And at the end, I have a bit of final advice for MBA candidates, from the academic and business perspectives of your MBA pursuit.

So, let’s have a look again at the Top 25 AACSB Online MBA Programs for 2010, in order of rank. The information presented here comes first from the school’s response to the AACSB survey, and then from the school’s website. In the event of conflicting information, the survey takes precedence because all schools in this review participated in the same survey with the same categories in the same time frame.

FIRST: Colorado – Denver (7,830.15 points)
Location – Denver, Colorado
Founded – 2004
Size – 1,207
Degree Levels – Four
AACSB Accreditation – Business and Accounting
Out/State MBA Tuition – $52,444
Average GMAT – 560
# of Concentrations – Nineteen (!)
Student/Faculty Ratio – 14.9


SECOND: Wisconsin – Whitewater (7,416.19)
Location – Whitewater, Wisconsin
Founded – 1868
Size – 650
Degree Levels – Three
AACSB Accreditation – Business
Out/State MBA Tuition – $18,118
Average GMAT – 501
# of Concentrations – Seven
Student/Faculty Ratio – 7.2


THIRD: Gonzaga (7,372.01)
Location – Spokane, Washington
Founded – 1887
Size – 288
Degree Levels – Three
AACSB Accreditation – Business and Accounting
Out/State MBA Tuition – $23,640
Average GMAT – 560.8
# of Concentrations – Seven
Student/Faculty Ratio – 6.3


FOURTH: Michigan – Flint (7,164.92)
Location – Flint, Michigan
Founded – 1944
Size – 187
Degree Levels – Two
AACSB Accreditation – Business
Out/State MBA Tuition – $8,881
Average GMAT – 517
# of Concentrations – Eight
Student/Faculty Ratio – 8.9


FIFTH: Nebraska – Lincoln (7,016.55)
Location – Lincoln, Nebraska
Founded – 1869
Size – 381
Degree Levels – Four
AACSB Accreditation – Business and Accounting
Out/State MBA Tuition – $33,332
Average GMAT – 625.5
# of Concentrations – Four
Student/Faculty Ratio – 4.8


SIXTH: Northeastern (6,950.81)
Location – Boston, Massachusetts
Founded – 1898
Size – 774
Degree Levels – Three
AACSB Accreditation – Business
Out/State MBA Tuition – $71,620
Average GMAT – 553
# of Concentrations – Eight
Student/Faculty Ratio – 5.2


SEVENTH: Worcester Poly (6,948.84)
Location – Worcester, Massachusetts
Founded – 1865
Size – 285
Degree Levels – Three
AACSB Accreditation – Business
Out/State MBA Tuition – $53,361
Average GMAT – 595.5
# of Concentrations – Eight
Student/Faculty Ratio – 12.4


EIGHTH: Alabama (6,855.84)
Location – Tuscaloosa, Alabama
Founded – 1831
Size – 408
Degree Levels – Four
AACSB Accreditation – Business and Accounting
Out/State MBA Tuition – $37,786
Average GMAT – 611
# of Concentrations – Four
Student/Faculty Ratio – 2.6


NINTH: Florida State (6,821.99)
Location – Tallahassee, Florida
Founded – 1851
Size – 623
Degree Levels – Four
AACSB Accreditation – Business and Accounting
Out/State MBA Tuition – $39,150
Average GMAT – 559.6
# of Concentrations – Four
Student/Faculty Ratio – 5.3



TENTH: Auburn (6,792.18)
Location – Auburn, Alabama
Founded – 1856
Size – 197
Degree Levels – Four
AACSB Accreditation – Business
Out/State MBA Tuition – $19,215
Average GMAT – 500
# of Concentrations – Five
Student/Faculty Ratio – 4.4



ELEVENTH: Quinnipiac (6,634.93)
Location – Hamden, Connecticut
Founded – 1929
Size – 199
Degree Levels – Three
AACSB Accreditation – Business
Out/State MBA Tuition – $33,580
Average GMAT – 580
# of Concentrations – Five
Student/Faculty Ratio – 3.0


TWELFTH: Penn State (6,620.94)
Location – University Park, Pennsylvania
Founded – 1855
Size – 267
Degree Levels – Four
AACSB Accreditation – Business And Accounting
Out/State MBA Tuition – $58,408
Average GMAT – 640.5
# of Concentrations – Four
Student/Faculty Ratio – 3.6


THIRTEENTH: Fayetteville State (6,591.61)
Location – Fayetteville, North Carolina
Founded – 1877
Size – 98
Degree Levels – Two
AACSB Accreditation – Business
Out/State MBA Tuition – $13,207
Average GMAT – 472
# of Concentrations – Six
Student/Faculty Ratio – 2.3


FOURTEENTH: Houston – Victoria (6,512.91)
Location – Victoria, Texas
Founded – 1983
Size – 866
Degree Levels – Three
AACSB Accreditation – Business
Out/State MBA Tuition – $27,024
Average GMAT – 442.5
# of Concentrations – Six
Student/Faculty Ratio – 25.5



FIFTEENTH: Georgia Southern (6,495.10)
Location – Statesboro, Georgia
Founded – 1929
Size – 285
Degree Levels – Three
AACSB Accreditation – Business and Accounting
Out/State MBA Tuition – $15,274
Average GMAT – 504
# of Concentrations – Three
Student/Faculty Ratio – 2.3



SIXTEENTH: Alabama – Birmingham (6,443.18)
Location – Birmingham, Alabama
Founded – 1969
Size – 347
Degree Levels – Three
AACSB Accreditation – Business and Accounting
Out/State MBA Tuition – $21,905
Average GMAT – 557
# of Concentrations – Four
Student/Faculty Ratio – 6.2



SEVENTEENTH: Massachusetts – Amherst (6,426.50)
Location – Amherst, Massachusetts
Founded – 1867
Size – 1,183
Degree Levels – Four
AACSB Accreditation – Business and Accounting
Out/State MBA Tuition – $21,944
Average GMAT – 617.2
# of Concentrations – One
Student/Faculty Ratio – 10.1



EIGHTEENTH: Morehead State (6,355.22)
Location – Morehead, Kentucky
Founded – 1968
Size – 202
Degree Levels – Three
AACSB Accreditation – Business
Out/State MBA Tuition – $15,192
Average GMAT – 400
# of Concentrations – Five
Student/Faculty Ratio – 5.2



NINETEENTH: Florida Gulf Coast (6,194.38)
Location – Fort Myers, Florida
Founded – 1991
Size – 230
Degree Levels – Three
AACSB Accreditation – Business
Out/State MBA Tuition – $51,198
Average GMAT – 505
# of Concentrations – Five
Student/Faculty Ratio – 4.2



TWENTIETH: North Texas (6,157.94)
Location – Denton, Texas
Founded – 1961
Size – 665
Degree Levels – Four
AACSB Accreditation – Business and Accounting
Out/State MBA Tuition – $28,948
Average GMAT – 493.3
# of Concentrations – Two
Student/Faculty Ratio – 5.4



TWENTY-FIRST: Washington State (6,153.22)
Location – Pullman, Washington
Founded – 1890
Size – 52
Degree Levels – Four
AACSB Accreditation – Business and Accounting
Out/State MBA Tuition – $23,656
Average GMAT – 554
# of Concentrations – One
Student/Faculty Ratio – 10.5



TWENTY-SECOND: Arizona State (6,150.06)
Location – Phoenix, Arizona
Founded – 1958
Size – 1,726
Degree Levels – Four
AACSB Accreditation – Business and Accounting
Out/State MBA Tuition – $60,186
Average GMAT – 587.5
# of Concentrations – Two
Student/Faculty Ratio – 7.1



TWENTY-THIRD: Texas – San Antonio (6,120.89)
Location – San Antonio, Texas
Founded – 1969
Size – 626
Degree Levels – Four
AACSB Accreditation – Business and Accounting
Out/State MBA Tuition – $30,906
Average GMAT – 561.7
# of Concentrations – One
Student/Faculty Ratio – 4.4



TWENTY-FOURTH: Suffolk (6,112.81)
Location – Boston, Massachusetts
Founded – 1937
Size – 1,028
Degree Levels – Three
AACSB Accreditation – Business and Accounting
Out/State MBA Tuition – $57,900
Average GMAT – 468.3
# of Concentrations – Five
Student/Faculty Ratio – 6.8



TWENTY-FIFTH: Oklahoma State (6,031.20)
Location – Stillwater, Oklahoma
Founded – 1890
Size – 690
Degree Levels – four
AACSB Accreditation – Business and Accounting
Out/State MBA Tuition – $37,326
Average GMAT – 562.5
# of Concentrations – one
Student/Faculty Ratio – 5.1


METHODOLOGY

The idea in setting up a ranking system was to record the relevant, consistent and publicly available elements of a school. The first part was to examine the information that could be found by simply looking up the school’s website and AACSB survey. From that, I selected fifteen categories of data which I believe is relevant for an MBA candidate to consider.

I then broke the fifteen categories down into three broad sub-groups, of Major, Useful, and Minor value, then ranked the categories within each. I then assigned relative proportions of the total to the categories, so that the end result would be 100%. This resulted in percentage values ranging from 0.36% to 24.00% for a single category.

I then ranked the schools according to their performance in each category. There were two ways to do this. Schools trying to reach a maximum number (like concentrations, where more is better) were assigned a value equal to the score in a category divided by the maximum (6 concentrations out of 8 maximum possible, for example) times 100 times the percentage value. Schools trying to reach a minimal value (such as tuition, where less is better) were assigned a value equal to the formula as follows: (1-(score-smallest possible)/largest possible) times 100 times the percentage value. As a result, maximum values for each category ranged from 36 points (for the lowest in-state undergraduate tuition) to 2,400 points (for the highest number of available concentrations). The rest was simple addition of scores to reach an aggregate. Anyone interested in their own scoring system can simply add or remove other categories they find relevant, adjust the weighting to suit their focus, and work the numbers the same way. I would just remind everyone that it’s important to use consistent data gathered the same way, which is available for all contending universities. Inconsistent data creates invalid results.

Finally, I’d like to thank everyone for reading my work and for your thoughts and comments, if you feel so inclined. This ranking is not meant to be advice on which school you should choose, but rather a tool to help you see which schools offer strengths that match your preferences. So far as I know, no one else is doing this, so amateur that I am, I like to think this may be of use.

11 comments:

mayank1055 said...

Thanks. That is really very helpful for me to get all this useful information.

Nancy said...

Thanks a lot!!! You have helped me immensely!

Thanks indeed.

This is Nancy from Israeli Uncensored News

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Anonymous said...

dj
you have not posted in such a long time- I hope this is only because you have been so busy with work and/or school

best
interested reader

Anonymous said...

Very useful. Thank you!

Anonymous said...

Um..looking at the Gonzaga program and I was not able to find their MBA online program on the web.

Is this list for regular MBA program courses which are taught online as pose to full time online MBA courses?

Confused..

Sophia said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Sophia said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Anonymous said...

Great information, I recently applied to the UHV MBA program so many of your posts have been very helpful. How many credits you were taking per semester while working full-time? I'm thinking 6 is reasonable, but wanted to get your thoughts. Thanks!

-Nick

Andy said...

I cant find an online MBA at the University of Alabama, Tuscaloosa. Could you mean U of North Alabama? I appreciate your research!

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