If you’re considering an MBA, there are a few ways to go about earning your degree. MBA programs can take several forms, giving you the choice to enroll as a full-time, part-time (i.e., evening or weekend MBA), or take classes in person or as an online student. And depending on your level of work experience, you might even meet the qualifications for an Executive MBA (EMBA), which are often offered as in-person, weekend MBA programs.1
But what kinds of weekend MBA programs are out there? Are weekend MBA programs the best option for you, or might an online MBA offer more convenience and flexibility? Read on to learn more.
An Overview of Full- and Part-time MBA Programs
Full-time MBA programs typically offer classes during the workweek during daytime hours. Students in these programs generally do not hold full-time jobs,2 which means losing out on income and work experience. And since it can take full-time students 2 years or more to complete their MBA degree,3 that could mean waiting 2 years or more before pursuing your desired full-time career.
Traditional part-time MBA programs offer a bit more flexibility compared to full-time programs. They can be offered as evening programs, and sometimes even as weekend MBA programs. Evening and weekend MBAs may be a consideration for some working professionals who plan to continue their career while pursuing a master’s degree, but it’s always possible that work and class schedules could conflict.
Executive MBA Programs
Another type of part-time program offered by some schools is the EMBA. These degrees are available to those in professional leadership roles, and many schools commonly offer them as weekend MBAs in which students are required to attend classes in person. If you have a few years of professional experience or less, you probably do not meet the admissions criteria for Executive MBAs. The average student earning an EMBA has about 10 more years of experience compared to students in full-time MBA degree programs.4
EMBA programs tend to omit introductory classes, as executive-level students are assumed to already possess introductory business knowledge.5 Importantly, students who enroll in these programs are usually not doing so with the goal of moving into a new field—they’re working professionals who are pursuing this degree in order to gain skills to help them in their current field.4 So if you’re researching MBA programs to possibly give you a leg up in switching careers, then an Executive MBA might not be the best option.
AIU’s Online MBA Program
If you’re thinking that even the best weekend MBA program might not be convenient enough for working professionals, then a program such as AIU’s one-year online MBA may appeal to you. AIU’s online MBA program is available fully online, allowing students to take their courses whenever they want, even on weekends.
And for those who may want to pursue an entry level job in a new field or advancement within their current one, an online MBA program may be better suited to setting you on the path to attaining your goals than an EMBA. AIU’s MBA core courses cover a number of fundamental topics that weekend EMBA programs might not: Global Financial Management, Business Research for Decision Making, A Managerial Approach to Marketing, and Strategic Management. Further, AIU’s online MBA program offers the following specializations so that you can tailor your graduate education to your interests: Accounting, Finance, Healthcare Management, Human Resource Management, Management, Marketing, Operations Management, Project Management, and Technology Management.
Students pursuing an online MBA at AIU can complete their degree in as little as 1 year. AIU’s accelerated MBA is made possible in part through AIU’s intellipath® learning tool, which allows students the opportunity to focus less on topics they already know and more on those they need to study most. And AIU’s faculty can provide students with support when needed, while career services tools and resources are available to support students with job search strategies. AIU also offers 24/7 technical support so that you can get tech help if you need it, no matter when or where you’re studying.
One of the main prerequisites for AIU’s online MBA program, is holding a bachelor’s degree, so if you’re serious about pursuing a graduate degree in business but you haven’t yet earned your BA, then an accelerated undergraduate program might interest you. Of course, other full-time and part-time options for earning your BA might be available to you depending upon your unique personal circumstances.Ready to learn more? Explore AIU’s flexible online MBA programs here.
1. “Types of MBA Programs,” The Princeton Review, https://www.princetonreview.com/business-school-advice/types-of-mba-programs (visited November 5, 2019).
2. Adam Hayes, “Part-Time vs. Full-Time MBA: What's the Difference?,” Investopedia, available at https://www.investopedia.com/articles/personal-finance/010915/parttime-versus-fulltime-mba.asp (visited August 30, 2019).
3. “What MBA Program Length Is Right for You?”, The Princeton Review, available at https://www.princetonreview.com/business-school-advice/mba-program-length (visited August 30, 2019).
4. Elena Bajic, “Are Executive MBAs Worth It?,” Forbes, available at https://www.forbes.com/sites/elenabajic/2015/11/13/are-executive-mbas-worth-it/#61bac0764cbd (visited August 30, 2019).
5. Dan Scalco, “EMBA vs MBA: The 6 Things You Need to Know Before Deciding,” Huffpost, available at https://www.huffpost.com/entry/emba-vs-mba-the-6-things_b_7842906 (visited August 30, 2019).
AIU cannot guarantee employment, salary, or career advancement. Not all programs are available to residents of all states.
Classes Start February 22, 2023