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Today’s Online MBAs Are More Flexible Than Ever

Demand for online MBA programs has skyrocketed in recent years. And B-schools have been quick to keep up with that demand. In 2016, only 284 accredited US schools had fully online MBA programs. In 2020, however, that number grew to 526 schools—a nearly 85% increase.

Fortune recently looked into why demand for online MBA programs has recently surged and how B-schools are expanding their online options.


New York University’s Stern School of Business launched its hybrid MBA program in November 2021. It’s a program that is flexible in nature—allowing students to complete the core MBA curriculum online and elective courses in person.

“When we speak with prospective applicants about NYU Stern’s part-time MBA program, one of the first things we always emphasize is flexibility,” Isser Gallogly, associate dean of MBA admissions at NYU Stern School of Business, tells Fortune.

That flexibility is something many professionals seek in today’s remote work environment.

“If you’re unable to leave your job to study or have family commitments that must take priority, you’re probably worried about being limited to only the business schools in your area when it comes to getting your MBA, or even the prospect of commuting to a college outside of town,” Carol Trehearn, of AZ Big Media, says. “This is why studying for your MBA online can be so handy, as it allows you to choose from a much broader range of schools when it comes to where you’d like to get your MBA from.”

At Emory University’s Goizueta Business School, officials recently announced the launch of the B-school’s online Executive MBA program. Goizueta offers the same courses taught by the same faculty for both online and in-person formats—a key benefit for today’s working professionals.

“The greatest limitation to any executive MBA program, whether it is online or in person, is the students’ time,” says Jaclyn Conner, associate dean of Goizueta’s executive MBA program. “Students are pressed for time, and their encounters in the program, regardless of format, have to be maximized.”

Sources: Fortune, AZ Big Media, Emory University

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