Earning a graduate degree can take from one to several years, depending on the degree and the program. Part-time programs allow you to continue working while studying. Online programs add great flexibility while providing the rigor and value of traditional programs.
Because a graduate degree requires an investment of time, effort, and money, it’s essential to understand the return on your graduate school investment (ROI) before embarking on a program.
What’s the ROI for Graduate Business Degrees?
ROI for graduate degrees depends on several factors, with key elements including the program's cost, the field of study, and average starting salary. In general, workers with graduate degrees enjoy the highest earnings and the lowest unemployment rates. Recent data from the Bureau of Labor Statistics shows that unemployment for those with a master’s degree is 4.1%, among the lowest.1
The outlook for post-graduation employment is even better for those considering an MBA or a Master of Science in Business Analytics (MSBA). Always in demand, the skills earned in these programs are even more sought after when it’s not “business as usual.” Supply chain and staffing disruptions attendant on the global pandemic have driven MBA graduate starting salaries even higher.2 Nine of ten MBA graduates in a recent survey rated the overall value of their degree highly.3
How Do MSBA and MBA Programs Compare?
MSBA and MBA programs provide graduates a wealth of well-paid opportunities across the public, private and non-profit sectors. Recruiters seek candidates with the ability to analyze problems, define strategies and communicate effectively, all skills developed by graduate education.
MBA programs add leadership development to that set of core skills applicable across industry verticals. Seattle University’s Albers School of Business and Economics Online MBA develops students’ cross-functional mastery of marketing, finance, risk management, international business, negotiations, and more.
MSBA programs equip graduates to lead organizations in understanding and applying the data that increasingly drives business decisions. The top-rated Albers MSBA program4 combines programming for analytics, mathematical modeling, machine learning, and other emerging data functions with communication and leadership skills training. This article provides a more detailed comparison of the two paths of study.
What is the average MBA salary?
Recent reports show the median MBA salary for new hires is $115,000, which is 75% higher than that for new hires with Bachelor’s degrees in business.3 Learn more about MBA hiring prospects and salary potential.
How Much Does an MSBA earn?
The demand for leaders with data analysis and translation skills is increasing. Many business and data analytics roles rank among the best in the U.S., with salary prospects reflecting the growing demand. The average base salary for data scientists is $97,004, with the high end at $136,000.5 Explore in-demand roles and salary potential for MSBA graduates.
What other factors influence MSBA and MBA salary?
Many factors in addition to the degree and any degree specialization can affect MSBA and MBA salary for graduates. These include geographic location, gender, university ranking, industry and role, and previous experience in the field. Salary differences among men and women are minimal at graduation. However, they tend to increase throughout a career, reaching an average MBA salary differential of 20% in 2020.2 Geographic location also figures into job prospects for graduates when the university leverages its location to tap into the expertise and networks of area professionals.
What Core Skills Drive Demand for MSBA and MBA Graduates?
Cross-functional knowledge of business operations, including marketing, finance, risk management, law, and negotiation, is foundational for leadership roles. Business recruiters have cited this knowledge as a key to the strong interest in hiring MBA graduates. In-demand skills for new hires across business sectors include strategic thinking, communications skills, interpersonal skills, learning agility, and creative problem-solving. 6, 7
Economic disruptions like those created by the COVID-19 pandemic and business disruptions enabled by increasingly rapid advances in computing and technology make the blend of hard and soft skills imparted by master’s programs in business increasingly valuable across industries.
Albers Online MBA Builds Key Business Leadership Skills
Soft skills taught in leadership courses may include interpersonal communications and emotional intelligence, team dynamics, and collaboration. Seattle embeds these skills into education on core business topics through the Leadership Challenge framework.
Each Albers Online MBA course includes a Leadership Challenge assignment designed to help students listen, learn, analyze, and act with confidence. Students collaboratively learn to apply an ethical, empathetic, and effective decision-making process to solve business problems. Repeated use of the framework will help differentiate you as an outstanding strategic leader.
Albers Online MSBA Builds Key Analytics Leadership Skills
The Online MSBA curriculum at Albers prepares students to bring clarity to messy data sets and shifting business obstacles through analytic and programming skills. Coursework uses quantitative tools such as R, Python, Hadoop, Spark, SQL, and more.
Each course in the forward-looking, ethically grounded MSBA curriculum incorporates one or more Data Translation Challenges. Each Data Translation Challenge strengthens your ability to solve real-world business problems through data analysis and effective communication.
Albers Online MSBA and MBA Programs Deliver Strong ROI
Factors including location, ranking, faculty, and online program design combine to create a strong ROI on the graduate school investment for Online MSBA and MBA students at the Albers School of Business and Economics.
Location can be a significant advantage, even for an online program. Albers is situated in the heart of Seattle’s thriving business community, allowing students to connect and network with leading companies, including Boeing, Microsoft, Amazon, and Starbucks.
Ranking can translate into more opportunities and higher salary potential for graduates. The Albers Online Business programs have been carefully designed to offer high-quality, highly-ranked education.4 The Association to Advance Collegiate Schools of Business (AACSB) has recognized both the online and in-person programs at Albers as among the best of the best, with accreditation given to less than five percent of the world’s business schools.
The Seattle University online business faculty comprises successful professionals and accomplished academics. Together, they are dedicated to delivering values-driven business education to students in the Online MSBA and MBA programs. Their commitment, combined with assigned student success coordinators and low student-to-faculty ratios, helps ensure your success in the program and beyond.
A well-designed online interface can significantly enhance the student experience, and that’s another area where the Albers Online programs shine. The intuitive structure of the learning management system simplifies access to materials needed for coursework. Features designed for real-time interaction and collaboration, along with robust always-on technical support, assure you of a positive learning experience.
Connect With Your Potential Today
Whether you decide to pursue an MSBA or MBA, earning an online degree from Albers can help you realize your earnings potential and opportunities for professional growth. Request additional information or schedule a call with an admissions advisor today.
- Retrieved on June 30, 2022, from bls.gov/careeroutlook/2020/data-on-display/education-pays.htm
- Retrieved on January 10, 2022, from wsj.com/articles/m-b-a-starting-salaries-are-soaring-11636952464
- Retrieved on January 10, 2022, from mba.com/business-school-and-careers/salary-and-roi/employers-explain-why-mba-salaries-so-high
- Retrieved on January 10, 2022, from usnews.com/best-graduate-schools/top-business-schools/seattle-university-01239
- Retrieved on January 10, 2022, from payscale.com/research/US/Job=Data_Scientist/Salary
- Retrieved on January 10, 2022, from bloomberg.com/graphics/2015-job-skills-report/
- Retrieved on January 10, 2022, from gmac.com/-/media/files/gmac/research/employment-outlook/2021_infographic_corporate_recruiters_survey_final.pdf