Academics and Degree Programs
Penn State World Campus grad programs are career-focused and are designed using best practices for online delivery.
Some programs such as the Master of Homeland Security offer a ‘base’ program along with options for areas of focus. For instance, one might choose Geospatial Intelligence or Information Security and Forensics to customize their course of study.
Program Highlights: Online MBA
Are you looking for a quality, online MBA program? The Penn State World Campus offers an AACSB-accredited MBA that is both flexible and functional. It is led by the internationally ranked Smeal College of Business.
How Do I apply to Penn State Online MBA Program?
Students can apply to the online MBA program electronically. Future students are required to have earned a bachelors degree from an accredited U.S. college or its foreign equivalent. In addition, students submit the following.
- Official transcripts
- GMAT or GRE test scores
- TOEFL if it applies
- Essay Response
- Online Interview
No prerequisite courses are needed. However, some previous course work (or work history) in accounting, economics, math and statistics may make an application stand out.
Online MBA Curriculum
The Penn State Online MBA is built around a three-art ICE framework. These are Integration, Collaboration and Engagement. These parts help students learn business strategy, how to work in teams, and to lead and influence.
In this 48-credit program, students take 39 core credits and 9 credits of concentration course work. The entire course of study is designed to expose students to the principles and practices of modern managers. Coursework also includes group projects which foster peer interaction. These projects simulate real-world business settings where individuals often work in teams to problem solve.
Develop Core Business Knowledge (39 credits)
MBA students work to develop a foundation of knowledge with core requisites. Sample topics are below.
- Financial accounting
- Team processes
- Communication for leaders and managers
- Global Business
- Managing in a digital economy
- New venture creation
Develop Expertise with an MBA Concentration Area (9 credits)
Once the core MBA requisites are completed, students may choose from several distinct concentrations. This may add a greater depth of expertise in a one area. Students select one category from the topics listed below.
- Accounting Foundations (e.g. taxation, auditing, managerial accounting)
- Advanced Accounting (e.g. strategic cost, financial reporting)
- Business Analytics (e.g. data analytics)
- Corporate Innovation and Entrepreneurship (e.g. business modelling)
- Finance (e.g. financial markets, portfolio theory, multinational finance)
- Human Resource Management (e.g. leadership, organizational behavior)
- General Management (over 20 online courses to choose from)
- Marketing Analytics (e.g. marketing in the digital world)
- Project Management (e.g. commercial law, planning, cost))
- Supply Chain Management (e.g. metrics, analysis)
Build Useful Business Skills
In addition to the topics covered in these courses, students work to develop skills and knowledge that could be integrated throughout the Online MBA course of study. These span business analytics, problem solving, influencing others, critical thinking, and cross purposes business savvy.
Some students may see value in having two graduate degrees and/or a grad certificate from Penn State, in addition to the MBA. In an Online MBA program, the concentrations have a dual purpose. They serve as electives, as well as part of a certificate or full masters program. Students can also look outside the MBA for their joint venture.
Five Day Residency
One of the defining parts of the Penn State Online MBA is the required, five-day residency. Held at Penn State’s main campus in University Park, Pennsylvania, the residency marks the start of the program. It is designed to provide crucial information and offers students a chance to meet one another and their faculty. A great segue to the team work to come.
The residency also serves to introduce program resources. During these days, students are immersed in a ‘team performance class’. Here they review key program features such as course topics. They also attend workshops outlining student advising services, career planning, stress management and alumni relations. Not to mention networking and time management.
Penn State Online MBA faculty are Ph.D. tenured professors and industry experts. Some are world-renowned faculty from the Black School of Business, Penn State Behrend; The School of Graduate Professional Studies, Great Valley; and Penn State Harrisburg School of Business Administration.
Weigh Your Options: Related Programs
Penn State World Campus also offers several related online business programs. The Penn State Online Master of Finance is an AACSB-accredited program that provides in depth financial theory. This well respected graduate degree program may help to prepare students for several professional certifications such as the Chartered Financial Analyst® (CFA®) certification.
The Masters in Project Management is an AACSB program. It provides problem-based learning vis a vis all aspects of managing various types of projects. Penn State is a Project Management Institute (PMI)® Registered Education Provider (R.E.P.).