Affordable Online Master’s in Marketing Degrees

One of the largest dimensions of business, marketing is an irreplaceable tool for creating, communicating, and delivering ideas and products to consumers, clients, and communities. Whether engaging in grassroots efforts, digital media, or influence campaigns, marketing has the power to influence society. If you enjoy working with people and unleashing your creativity, marketing may be the right field for you.

Many MBA programs offer students the opportunity to pursue a concentration in marketing. Here, you’ll learn how to communicate with a variety of people while also studying past marketing campaigns to understand what works and what doesn’t. You’ll also hone your creative chops, and learn how to create meaningful and successful marketing plans for many different types of clients. A master’s degree in marketing ensures that you’ll be able to pursue jobs with higher salaries and more advancement opportunities than positions available to students with just a bachelor’s degree.

Graduates with an online master’s in marketing can work in a variety of fields. Nearly every company in the world needs marketing help, and you can find work in pretty much any industry. An online master’s in marketing is also a great option if you’re looking for job security and financial independence: The Bureau of Labor Statistics projects that the field will grow by 9% over the next several years, and that marketing managers currently earn an average annual salary of nearly $125,000.

Below, we’ve ranked the most affordable online master’s in marketing degrees in the country. These schools offer an academically rigorous program at an affordable price, and prepare graduates for a range of careers without pushing them into severe debt. If you’re considering earning a master’s in marketing online, be sure to take a look at these top schools.

Most Affordable Online Master's in Marketing Degrees
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Fort Hays State University

Value Score 9.08
Average Tuition $3,205
Percentage of Students in Online Programs 87
Number of Online Programs 1

Set halfway between Kansas City and Denver in the small community of Hays, Fort Hays State is one of the fastest-growing universities in Kansas. Much of this growth has been thanks to the school's online campus -- Fort Hays Virtual College -- which now enrolls almost twice as many students as the brick and mortar school. Nationally ranked for quality and value, the Virtual College offers more than forty, fully-accredited degree programs aimed at adult learners.

The university's affordable online MBA in marketing is a 34-hour program based around Fort Hays' traditional master’s of business administration curriculum. Marketing is one of 11 specialties available to students, complementing the required 25 credits in core business classes. The marketing concentration is built around three requisite classes -- consumer behavior, marketing research, and strategic electronic marketing -- and there are more marketing courses in the core coursework. Full-time students can earn their degrees in as little as 18 months, though it's typical for working professionals to take six credit hours per semester and complete the program in about three years. Web-based students have access to an array of services, from the Online Learning Commons, where they can exchange information, to the Forsyth Library, which will mail books, photocopy articles, and provide other assistance to remote students.

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Texas A & M University-Commerce

Value Score 8.85
Average Tuition $3,630
Percentage of Students in Online Programs 78
Number of Online Programs 2

Since its founding in 1889, Texas A&M Commerce has been broadening its outreach. Established in Cooper, Texas, the school moved to its present location in Commerce just a few years later and has since added locations in Corsicana, Dallas, McKinney, Mesquite, Midlothian, and Rockwell. Today, it's the fifth-largest university in the Texas A&M system with 12,000 students, and its educational opportunities are almost boundless thanks to its eCollege on the world-wide web. The virtual campus allows students to pursue many degrees, from the baccalaureate to the doctoral level, either entirely online or 50% online.

The affordable master’s of science in marketing program is fully accredited and can be earned entirely online. The 30-credit-hour curriculum explores best practices in modern marketing, from business to business to international advertising. Eight core classes are required -- in management, finance, and marketing -- as well as 6 hours of electives, and they are offered on the school's traditional semester schedule. Students in the online master in marketing program have access to tech support, career services, the library, and even the bookstore.

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Southeastern Oklahoma State University

Value Score 8.37
Average Tuition $4,139
Percentage of Students in Online Programs 64
Number of Online Programs 1

Based in the small city of Durant, not far from the Texas border, Southeastern or "SE" is a public university with a student body of 4,000. Established as a teacher's college in 1909, the school now offers dozens of degree programs in a wide array of disciplines, from accounting to sociology. It also has a variety of cheap online MBA programs, some of them in unique fields like Native American leadership and aerospace logistics. SE believes so strongly in affordability that it puts the cost of an online MBA in bold type on the front page of its virtual campus. (Currently under $12,000 -- or $330 per credit hour.)

The school's online MBA in marketing program takes an integrated approach to analyzing consumer behavior. The 36-credit-hour curriculum explores accounting, finance, economics, research, data analysis, behavioral management, and information systems; the marketing component includes two required, seven-week classes -- consumer behavior and social media marketing. For flexibility, the master’s of business administration - marketing program has six start dates spread across the calendar year, and students can earn their degrees in as little as twelve months. Distance learners have access to the school's Henry G. Bennett Memorial Library, tech support, and services like online tutoring.

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University of South Dakota

Value Score 8.22
Average Tuition $5,264
Percentage of Students in Online Programs 39
Number of Online Programs 1

Known as "USD," the University of South Dakota is both the flagship of the state's system of higher education and the oldest university in the state. Based in the southeastern city of Vermillion, on a bluff overlooking the Missouri River, the school has about 10,000 students, about a quarter of whom are pursuing graduate degrees. More than 40 degree programs are now offered entirely online.

The affordable online MBA offered by USD's Beacom School of Business has won national rankings for excellence, and it's among the few schools worldwide to be accredited by the Association to Advance Collegiate Schools of Business. (Less than 5% of business schools have been granted that honor.) The university's MBA - marketing is one of a handful of MBA specializations offered by Beacom. Based around the school's traditional MBA, designed to create leaders for business, industry, and government, the 36-credit program focuses on consumer trends, new product development, and branding in today's dynamic market. Three classes comprise the marketing concentration, including advanced consumer behavior. An undergraduate degree in business -- or 21 credits of requisite business courses -- are required to get started in the program.

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University of Houston-Victoria

Value Score 8.16
Average Tuition $5,574
Percentage of Students in Online Programs 91
Number of Online Programs 1

Part of the four-school University of Houston system, UHV is set in the small city of Victoria, about thirty miles inland from the Gulf of Mexico and two hours from Houston. The university is known for its affordability, small class sizes, and excellence in business education. More than 4,200 students pursue degrees in seventy fields on the main campus in Victoria and at a satellite center in Katy. Over 115 degrees and certificates can be completed entirely online.

UHV's School of Business Administration offers a variety of affordable online MBA degree programs. Both the global master of business administration and the strategic master of business administration have marketing concentrations. Other areas of specialty include accounting, entrepreneurship, finance, economic development, management, HR, and international business. Students take 12 hours of classes in their specialty field in addition to the 30-36 credit hours needed for the degree; those without an undergrad degree in business are required to take additional credits. The marketing concentration delves deep into marketing research, consumer behavior, marketing communications, advertising, and e-commerce. A graduate certificate in marketing management is also an option at UHV, and students can take courses at any of the other University of Houston schools through the Student Pathways program.

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University of Nebraska-Lincoln

Value Score 7.69
Average Tuition $6,960
Percentage of Students in Online Programs 23
Number of Online Programs 1

The University of Nebraska is the state of Nebraska's largest and oldest school with more than 25,000 "Huskers." A distinguished research institution, UNL is considered one of the Midwest's finest universities, and the NCAA Big Ten football powerhouse is consistently ranked among the best values in public education. Someone once called it a "Grade A school for B students" -- in other words, a place where kids with ordinary grades can still get a fantastic education.

UNL's cheap online MBA in marketing is ranked in the top twenty in the nation, and it begins with a first year focusing on the basics of business, followed by a concentration in marketing. Students with little business world experience must do an internship; everyone has to take the MBA Assessment prior to graduating. Asynchronous, the master’s in business administration program typically takes between 2-4 years to complete, depending upon whether students attend full or part-time. Online learners have full access to the networking of UNL's Career Services. More information is available by logging onto a 1-hour webinar offered monthly.

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Louisiana Tech University

Value Score 7.44
Average Tuition $6,594
Percentage of Students in Online Programs 37
Number of Online Programs 1

Based in the northern Louisiana city of Ruston, "Tech" is a research university of 12,000 students with a nationwide reputation for its science, technology, and math programs. The school's profile is on the rise -- it has been nationally ranked as an up-and-coming university, as one of the best schools in Louisiana, and as a place students graduate with the least amount of debt.

Tech's College of Business has a variety of affordable MBA programs, most of them available through the school's web-based Global Campus. The Professional Online Master’s of Business Administration is grounded in a 24-credit core curriculum. Marketing is one of four available concentrations, and requires an additional 12 credits -- three marketing electives and the mandatory critical thinking for business seminar. An approved internship can count as a credited course. After all coursework is completed, students attend a capstone seminar. Online classes follow the school's three-quarter schedule (fall, winter, spring), and students can get assistance from the Help Desk from 8 am to 5 pm.

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University of North Texas

Value Score 7.37
Average Tuition $5,450
Percentage of Students in Online Programs 35
Number of Online Programs 1

The University of North Texas is one of the nation's largest institutions of higher education, a public research school with more than 36,000 students. Based in the city of Denton, "UNT" hosts over 220 degree programs, and provides Texans with more online options than any other school in the state.

The master in marketing online is offered through the Department of Marketing and Logistics and combines a nationally ranked MBA with a specialization in marketing, consumer behavior, and management. Offered both full- and part-time, the 36-hour MBA in Marketing is broken down into six core courses, two marketing requisites (information for strategic marketing decisions and effective marketing planning in dynamic environments), three supporting courses, and one elective. Students who meet the criteria qualify for Mu Kappa Tau, the National Honor Society for Marketing, and the grad school sponsors two organizations that provide networking opportunities to marketing students -- the American Marketing Association and Logistics Students Association. Online learners have access to UNT's Digital Library, which is considered among the best of its kind in the world.

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Ashland University

Value Score 7.12
Average Tuition $5,713
Percentage of Students in Online Programs 39
Number of Online Programs 1

Ashland U. is named after the northern Ohio city in which it sits. A private, non-profit, liberal arts university, Ashland is "guided by a Christian heritage" and prides itself on providing an affordable education. The school has been included on many national lists for value, and now offers 13 online programs, from an associate in business to graduate level Seminary study.

Aimed at busy, working professionals, Ashland's cheap master in marketing online is a 36-credit program offered in an asynchronous format. The master’s of business administration degree is split evenly between core classes and specialization, and students can customize their concentration in a range of areas, from accounting to marketing. Graduates are required to demonstrate competency in leadership, problem solving, communication, international knowledge, and integrity and accountability, and all students finish the degree with the Strategic Planning and Policy Analysis capstone.

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Gardner-Webb University

Value Score 7.07
Average Tuition $7,380
Percentage of Students in Online Programs 53
Number of Online Programs 1

Established in 1905 as a boarding school for Baptist high schoolers, Gardner Webb has grown into a thriving university with 80 degree programs, many of them available online. Based in Boiling Springs, in the foothills of the Blue Ridge mountains of North Carolina, the NCAA Division I school continues its Baptist traditions, offering a rigorous education from a Christian perspective to a student body of more than 4,000. Gardner Webb or "GW" has achieved the elite Doctoral Status from the Carnegie Classification of Institutions of Higher Education, and its online arm has been recognized for both excellence and affordability in several national lists.

GW's cheap master in marketing online begins with its fully-accredited master’s of business administration program, a 30-credit core curriculum that can be earned entirely online. Students can then specialize in marketing, which is offered along with a host of other 6-credit concentrations, including forensic accounting, international business, healthcare management, HR, taxes, and tourism. The program culminates with a capstone course in strategic management. Students log in using the school's WebbConnect program.

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Missouri University of Science and Technology

Value Score 6.92
Average Tuition $9,288
Percentage of Students in Online Programs 41
Number of Online Programs 1

Missouri S&T was founded in 1870 as one of the first technological schools west of the Mississippi. Today it's a research institution with 8,800 students and a reputation for quality and value. "S&T" is consistently ranked in national lists for affordability and return on investment, and its individual schools, like engineering, education, and business, top national polls.

The unique online master in marketing at S&T is set up for working businesspeople and designed to be completed on a part-time basis across two to three years. The core curriculum of the MBA program consists of 21 credits, to which students can add an area of specialization, like marketing. Fifteen additional credits in the concentration are required. The GMAT is a prerequisite for admission, but professionals with a lengthy history in business may waive the exam. Students may also enter the program by earning a graduate certificate in one of ten business-administration areas with a grade of a B or better in all courses. S&T publishes a handy, downloadable "Miner Guide" to answer the questions of distance students, and it has a variety of services, like tech support, a video communications center, and a career center to help those enrolled.

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Bryan College-Dayton

Value Score 6.92
Average Tuition $10,140
Percentage of Students in Online Programs 89
Number of Online Programs 1

At Bryan College, professors open classes with prayer. Based in Dayton, Tennessee, the small liberal arts college puts "Christ Above All." The student body numbers 1,500, about a third of whom were home-schooled, and they pursue 25 majors in 49 different fields of study, from the baccalaureate to graduate level. Undergrad courses are offered on campus, graduate work is found online.

Bryan's Christian worldview permeates all facets of college life. The school's master in marketing online looks at real-world business, consumer behavior, and international management from a Biblical perspective. The MBA - marketing specialization curriculum studies marketing management, public relations, integrated marketing communications, as well as business basics. Classes like strategic marketing and marketing research help students become problem solvers who can use quantitative and analytical tools and complex financial and economic indicators to do strategic planning. Aimed at working professionals, the 36-credit program is set up in accelerated, twelve-week sessions and designed to be completed within 18 months. Accreditation is through the International Assembly for Collegiate Business Education.

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University of South Florida-St Petersburg

Value Score 6.91
Average Tuition $8,350
Percentage of Students in Online Programs 56
Number of Online Programs 1

Founded in 1965 as a satellite of the University of South Florida, "St. Pete" became its own entity in 2006. Today, it's a small, public research university with 4,700 students and a burgeoning reputation -- especially for business. The school itself is nationally ranked among public regional universities, and its Kate Tiedemann College of Business is one of only 1% business schools in the country to be accredited for both business and accounting by the Association to Advance Collegiate Schools of Business. Likewise, St. Pete's online MBA is consistently ranked near the top of national lists.

The online MBA in marketing is built around the school's general master’s in business administration program. Marketing is one of seven possible specializations (others include less-common concentrations like corporate social responsibility and forensic accounting). Students can also create a dual degree by combining the MBA with a master of accountancy, which shares nine credits with the MBA curriculum. Study abroad options are available, too. Full- and part-time study tracks are offered and online students have full access to an array of student resources, from career services to the counseling center.

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University of Massachusetts-Lowell

Value Score 6.73
Average Tuition $1,637
Percentage of Students in Online Programs 94
Number of Online Programs 1

Located 50 minutes north of Boston, UMass Lowell has been growing steadily in recent years. From its campus astride the Merrimac River in an old mill town, the university has seen both its student population and its reputation boom. Ranked among the top public research schools in the country, UMass Lowell has become known for innovation and entrepreneurship -- it's ranked 13th in the nation for intellectual property created -- and it's home to one of the largest virtual campuses in New England.

Lowell's affordable online master’s in marketing has been lauded as well. It's part of a master of business administration program that has been accredited by the prestigious Association to Advance Collegiate Schools of Business and listed among the top online MBA programs in the country. The curriculum consists of 10 to 16 courses, depending upon whether students have an undergrad business degree, and explores theory and practice through projects and case studies. Program participants can specialize in marketing, and select three courses from the seven marketing electives, including forward-thinking classes like sustainable/green marketing and new product development. Graduates will be fully prepared to enter the commercial, industrial, and non-profit sectors. The school hosts a virtual open house before each semester to help orient online students.

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Wilmington University

Value Score 6.66
Average Tuition $7,992
Percentage of Students in Online Programs 48
Number of Online Programs 1

Based in the suburbs of Wilmington, Delaware, WU opened its doors to a class of 194 students in 1968. Today, over 18,000 students are enrolled at more than a dozen sites in Delaware, Maryland, New Jersey, and online. Ever since its founding, WU has been known for its programs for non-traditional students, scheduling classes during the day, evening, and on weekends, and the advent of the worldwide web only expanded its options. More than 41% of its students now attend classes in cyberspace, selecting from over 90 degree programs.

WU's online master in marketing is accredited by the prestigious International Assembly for Collegiate Business Education, and prepares students for leadership roles in a wide variety of business enterprises. The master’s of business administration program stresses two core competencies -- the ability to use management skills, economic principles, and modern marketing techniques to build a strong fiscal future for an organization; and the ability to prepare a strategic plan that examines the inner workings of a business and finds creative solutions to real-world problems. Marketing management is one of 10 specializations. The accelerated, 7-week courses are designed to fit into the busy schedules of working professionals. Students can sample Wilmington's online classes by enrolling in the My Dream Job course for free.

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King University

Value Score 6.58
Average Tuition $9,024
Percentage of Students in Online Programs 74
Number of Online Programs 1

Set photogenically in the foothills of the Smoky Mountains, King University is located in Bristol, Tennessee. A comprehensive Christian college, King offers more than 90 degree programs to its 3,000 students. Founded as a bible college, it retains an affiliation with the Presbyterian Church.

Leadership, critical thinking, team building, and decision making are the key focus areas of King's affordable online MBA in marketing. The cohort-based, 36-credit-hour master’s of business administration degree program is designed for students with a minimum of two years' work experience. It uses individual study and small group discussions to explore theory, research, quantitative methods, and skills development. The four-step case method, which uses real-world scenarios, is integral to the program. Three courses comprise the marketing specialization -- consumer behavior, new venture creation, and promotions and advertising strategies. Online courses are held to the same rigorous standard as those delivered to students on campus. They can be pursued on an accelerated, year-round basis and completed in as little as 16 months. Tuition includes all course materials.

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Tennessee Technological University

Value Score 6.52
Average Tuition $8,940
Percentage of Students in Online Programs 64
Number of Online Programs 1

Governed by the Tennessee Board of Regents, Tennessee Tech is a public university based in Cookeville, about 70 miles east of Nashville. More than 10,000 "Golden Eagles" are enrolled in 60 degree programs at the sprawling tech school, and business is the most popular graduate program. Tennessee Tech is at or near the top of many national and regional rankings, including public universities, southern universities, best investment, and graduates with the least debt. Its master in marketing online program, too, is consistently considered among the best -- and most affordable -- in the country.

The online master in marketing is part of the larger, ten-course, master’s of business administration program, accredited by the respected Association to Advance Collegiate Schools of Business. The curriculum uses case methods, simulations, and research projects to deliver business basics and develop managerial competence. Though marketing is not an officially recognized concentration, students can add a custom specialization in the discipline by selecting three electives (services marketing, small business management and entrepreneurship, and international marketing). Both full and part-time schedules are available, and students can earn their degree in as little as a year. Study abroad is an option for all students, and program participants can also elect to pursue the degree in a hybrid, industry-immersed form, which requires monthly visits to Nashville. The TN eCampus site provides a wealth of student services, from tech support to test proctoring.

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Saint Leo University

Value Score 6.46
Average Tuition $8,730
Percentage of Students in Online Programs 87
Number of Online Programs 1

With an enrollment of more than 16,000, St. Leo is one of the largest Catholic universities in the U.S. Located in the sunny community of St. Leo, outside Tampa, the liberal arts school has become one of Florida's top-ranked institutions, known for programs in business, information technology, and education. St. Leo has a long history in distance education -- it was one of the first schools in the country to provide remote learning opportunities -- and it now has more students attending school in virtual classrooms than on campus.

St. Leo's affordable master’s in marketing online is part of its larger master of business administration program. Marketing is one of several concentration options; students can select up to two with the approval of their advisor. (market research and social media analytics is another that might be of interest to marketing majors.) The curriculum is grounded in the traditional business skills of communication, teamwork, management, and the marketing specialization includes classes like global marketing, sales management, and advertising and promotion. Internships can account for 3 credits. Students can take up to two courses per eight-week session, and can begin the program at any of the six terms each year. The school believes in keeping online students well-connected and hosts web-based clubs for networking, and a variety of resources, like peer mentoring and professional tutoring.

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Brenau University

Value Score 6.36
Average Tuition $8,964
Percentage of Students in Online Programs 58
Number of Online Programs 1

Founded in 1878 as a private women's college, Brenau has grown into one of Florida's top regional liberal arts institutions. It still has a women's campus, but has expanded broadly, adding to its facilities in Gainesville, Florida, and opening centers in Jacksonville, Florida, and Atlanta and Augusta, Georgia, all of which are co-ed. It has also spread its influence onto the web, where more than 30% of its 3,500 students now do their learning.

The 15-course, 45-credit, online MBA in marketing is essentially Brenau's traditional master of business administration degree with a certificate in marketing added to it. The cohort-based curriculum consists of two foundational business courses, which can be waived by participants with a business degree; eight core classes in such fields as global economics and financial management; and five courses in the concentration, which include topics like new media, product development, and service marketing and differentiation. An Online Student Center links web-based learners with services like tutoring, counseling, and the bookstore.

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Concordia University-Ann Arbor

Value Score 6.28
Average Tuition $9,864
Percentage of Students in Online Programs 77
Number of Online Programs 1

CUAA is a private, liberal arts university set on the banks of the Huron River on the outskirts of Ann Arbor, Michigan, and affiliated with the Lutheran Church-Missouri Synod. Founded as a Christian junior college in 1973, the school has enjoyed record growth in recent years -- enrollment is at an all-time high. The current student body of 1,054 represents a 40% jump over 2013. Business remains the most popular field of study, accounting for 32% of all majors.

Concordia's online master in marketing is part of the master of business administration program, offered in partnership with sister school Concordia Wisconsin, and follows a 39-credit curriculum. Fifteen areas of specialty -- including strategic marketing -- are available on their own and can be combined to tailor the degree to a student's career path. One class -- business foundations for administrative professions -- fulfills all of the program's prerequisites, though students are required to have a bachelor's degree and a minimum GPA of 3.0 for admission. Learning outcomes of Concordia's online marketing master include: understanding how to apply a Christian perspective to ethical questions; problem solving using critical thinking skills, developing a business worldview in a global context; effective teamwork; and professional communications skills. The asynchronous courses are typically completed in 8-10 weeks at a student's own pace.

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SUNY Empire State College

Value Score 6.28
Average Tuition $10,870
Percentage of Students in Online Programs 91
Number of Online Programs 1

SUNY Empire State is part of the State University of New York System, and its "campus" is spread across 36 different locations, including the Internet. Established in 1971, it was set up as a statewide institution to teach non-traditional learners. In other words, it was designed for working adults and others who wanted to pursue a degree but couldn't pack their bags and attend a four-year college. Accredited by the Middle States Commission on Higher Education, SUNY Empire is known for keeping tuition affordable and classes accessible for its 18,000 students.

The school's online MBA in marketing is a competency-based program aimed at working professionals. Students can earn up to 24 credits for work experience and waive requirements by passing assessments. Marketing master candidates take the master’s of business administration - management degree, and complete a 15-credit, advanced certificate in marketing analytics and brand management. The MBA focuses on decision making and communication, while the certificate curriculum delves into information management and data analysis as they apply to promotion, advertising, and marketing strategy. Both are offered online, but the MBA requires several 3-4 day residencies. The certificate program begins each spring, summer, and fall term. Courses can be taken in any order, but SUNY Empire recommends that the capstone -- marketing analytics and brand management -- be taken last. Federal financial aid is only available for the certificate program if it's taken concurrently with the MBA.

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Oklahoma Wesleyan University

Value Score 6.24
Average Tuition $8,982
Percentage of Students in Online Programs 49
Number of Online Programs 1

Oklahoma Wesleyan is an evangelical Christian, liberal arts university based in the small city of Bartlesville, Oklahoma. Part of the larger Wesleyan Church, OKWU is "unapologetic in its commitment to Christ," and believes in the inerrant truth of scripture, and it incorporates these Biblical beliefs into all aspects of college life. The school has won accolades for the quality of its faculty, and for its affordability, and it welcomed its largest freshman class ever in 2016.

More than a dozen degree programs are available on OKWU's virtual campus, including an online master’s in marketing. Students customize the 30-credit master of business administration degree by adding six credits in an area of concentration. Options include human resource management, finance, organizational leadership, nursing management, and marketing. Christian ethics are integral to the program, which culminates in a strategic management capstone. To earn the degree, students must keep a cumulative GPA of 3.0 or better, and all courses must be completed through OKWU's Adult and Graduate Studies department, which delivers the school's online programming. All classes are asynchronous, and students are encouraged to take one at a time. Digital courses cost the same as their location-based counterparts, and in-state tuition is available no matter the zip code.

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University of Florida

Value Score 6.16
Average Tuition $10,770
Percentage of Students in Online Programs 38
Number of Online Programs 1

Based in the city of Gainesville, the University of Florida is one of the nation's largest schools, home to more than 50,000 "Gators." It's also one considered one of the best, ranking in the top 20 among public universities. UF contributes a lot to the Sunshine State's economy, adding more than $12.5 billion in 2014-14, but it doesn't cost a lot, relatively speaking. Affordability is important to UF -- more than half of its graduates leave with no student loan debt at all.

UF is a national leader in web-based learning, offering more than 100 degree programs online, many of them considered among the best in the country. The affordable online MBA here is among the oldest in the country, and it has been ranked as one of the finest on the net, and also one of the "happiest," for the spirit of its participants. Students interested in an online marketing master have two tracks available: a one- or two-year plan. Those with a BA in business can take the shorter option, which is actually completed in 16 months. Those without a business degree -- or who have been out of school for 7 years or longer -- are eligible for the 27-month plan. A minimum of two years' work experience is required for both. Marketing is one of four focus areas. Every master’s of business administration program at UF requires a mandatory, on-site orientation, and classes are delivered in a "lock-step" cohort.

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Morgan State University

Value Score 6.07
Average Tuition $6,876
Percentage of Students in Online Programs 15
Number of Online Programs 1

Located in Baltimore, Morgan State is Maryland's designated "public urban university," with a responsibility to address the needs of city residents first. Even so, more than a third of its student body of 7,700 are from outside Maryland. MSU is a comprehensive institution, with a strong emphasis on the arts and sciences among undergrads, and a wide variety of programs in professional fields for graduate-level learners.

The Graves School of Business and Management is accredited by the prestigious Association to Advance Collegiate Schools of Business, and began offering an affordable master in marketing online in 2016. The 36-credit master’s of business administration program begins with a strong liberal arts foundation; students learn how organizations work while adding managerial skills. Online master of marketing students then specialize by adding 3 elective credits in International Marketing, Promotions Marketing, and Marketing in the Services Organization. Morgan Online provides an array of student support services, from library access to tutoring to tech help.

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Rivier University

Value Score 6.04
Average Tuition $9,342
Percentage of Students in Online Programs 35
Number of Online Programs 2

Rivier U. is a Catholic liberal arts university in Nashua, New Hampshire, named for Blessed Anne Marie Rivier, founder of the Sisters of the Preservation of Mary. A small, private institution, the Division III school has close to 3,000 students, about half of whom are in graduate programs. Rivier prides itself on public service, global engagement, and preparing students for professional careers.

Rivier offers a cheap online master in marketing through its traditional master’s of business administration program. The curriculum stresses business fundamentals like accounting, project management, organizational dynamics, and risk assessment, and includes three marketing electives -- sales management, digital marketing analytics, and strategic brand management. Admission is on a rolling basis, and terms start multiple times per year, for added flexibility. Up to nine transfer credits are allowed. Rivier provides multiple resources for its web-based learners, many of which are outlined in the comprehensive Rivier Online Student Handbook.

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Concordia University-Wisconsin

Value Score 5.95
Average Tuition $9,864
Percentage of Students in Online Programs 72
Number of Online Programs 3

Concordia Wisconsin is one of the nation's leading Lutheran universities. Affiliated with the Lutheran Church-Missouri Synod, it's part of the ten-school Concordia University System, and partners closely with Concordia Ann Arbor. CW's campus is set on 200 acres along Lake Michigan, 15 miles north of Milwaukee, and the school's 8,000-some students also attend classes at nine other learning centers in Wisconsin and online. Roughly half of the student body is enrolled in graduate or professional studies.

Concordia's cheap nationally ranked master’s of business administration program is run jointly with sister school Concordia Wisconsin, and follows a 39-credit curriculum. Strategic marketing is one of 15 areas of specialty that can be combined to customize the degree. One class -- business foundations for administrative professions -- fulfills all the program's prerequisites for those whose baccalaureate degree is not in business. Accredited by the International Assembly for Collegiate Business Education, the MBA curriculum focuses on management and leadership, analysis and decision making, and ethics. The marketing specialization includes a wider array of courses than most programs, including such less-common options as athletic administration, salesmanship, and the legal aspects of marketing; an internship is also available for credit. The asynchronous online master in marketing courses are typically completed in 8-10 weeks at a student's own pace.

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West Virginia University

Value Score 5.87
Average Tuition $8,568
Percentage of Students in Online Programs 29
Number of Online Programs 1

Set in the city of Morgantown near the Pennsylvania border, West Virginia U. is the second-largest institution of higher learning in the Mountain State. WVU is the flagship of West Virginia's public university system, a comprehensive land-, sea-, and space-grant university with 14 colleges and schools offering 353 major programs of study to its 33,000 students. The Carnegie Foundation has recognized WVU as a "very high research activity" university, and many of its schools, including its College of Business and Economics, have been ranked at the national level.

WVU's web-based master’s of business administration program has been consistently ranked among the country's best and consists of 48 credit hours spread across two years. All classes can be taken in cyberspace, but there are four, three-day residencies -- on campus and in Washington, DC -- required to acquaint students with one another and their professors and to encourage networking. The master in marketing online takes the form of a concentration in Integrated Marketing Communications, which explores audience insights, brand equity management, and emerging media and accounts for 12 credits. Enrollment coaches and academic advisors provide orientation to the program and support students as they pursue their degrees. The Blackboard e-campus is used for class delivery. All applicants must have two or more years of professional experience and an undergrad degree in business.

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Brandman University

Value Score 5.51
Average Tuition $10,980
Percentage of Students in Online Programs 72
Number of Online Programs 1

Brandman University was established to provide educational opportunities to the soldiers at the former Marine Corps Air Station near Irvine, California. While still very military friendly -- it's been called a "Best College for Vets" -- BU has grown into a full-fledged private university with more than 12,000 students at 25 locations across California, Washington, and online. The school is affiliated with sister college, Chapman University, in Orange, and its focus is squarely on adult education. Brandman uses a competency-based format, which places the emphasis on knowledge gained rather than time spent in class.

The school's online programs are frequently ranked at the top of national lists, including the online MBA. Fully accredited, the MBA - Marketing program sets marketing at the forefront as a critical function of every business. The curriculum explores principles of accounting, finance management, human resources, and economic analysis, and prepares students for careers in public relations, advertising, social media, product development, and management. The first 2/3 of the program deal with business basics; the last 12 credits are devoted specifically to seminars in marketing. A capstone, business strategy and competitive advantage, can be taken after the core coursework is finished. Brandman Online has a variety of resources for its distance learners, from the Online Writing Community to tech support for the Blackboard platform.

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Regis University

Value Score 5.51
Average Tuition $10,800
Percentage of Students in Online Programs 51
Number of Online Programs 1

Regis University was founded in New Mexico in 1877 by a group of exiled Italian Jesuit priests. Since moved to Denver, it's now the only Jesuit university in the Rocky Mountain West and one of 28 in the nation. The school is considered among the best in the region; its 8,700 students select from among dozens degree programs at four Colorado campuses and online, all of which address the quintessential Regis question: "How ought we to live?"

Regis's master’s of marketing is an outgrowth of its traditional master of Business administration program. The curriculum was designed for experienced professionals and explores how to use marketing principles to best attract, retain, and understand customers. Applicants without an undergrad degree can gain admission by passing the accounting and finance sections from an assessment suite, or by enrolling in three foundational courses. The program's 36 credits are split evenly between core requirements and the marketing specialization. Classes are delivered asynchronously for utmost flexibility, and the eight-week sessions are offered every eight weeks. Regis' WorldClass portal offers an array of service to online students, from IT help to library access.

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Ottawa University-Online

Value Score 5.44
Average Tuition $10,980
Percentage of Students in Online Programs 100
Number of Online Programs 1

The roots of Ottawa University date back to the nineteenth-century work of Baptist missionaries with the native Ottawa tribe on the Kansas plains. That heritage gave rise to the town of Ottawa and later to the college that grew there. Today, Ottawa is a comprehensive, Christ-centered university of 5,000 with 8 campuses and a home on the web, serving students from diverse backgrounds.

Ottawa Online's master’s of business administration program is aimed at working professionals, and it's framed as three modules. The first -- Behavioral Courses -- covers organizational behavior and business ethics, and includes one elective from the marketing specialty. The second -- Core Courses -- is the foundation in management, accounting, and finance, along with strategic marketing and another elective. The capstone course -- Graduate Seminar: Business Policy and Strategy -- comprises the last module, and is complemented by two electives. A downloadable Adult Student Handbook is filled with resources for online students.

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University of Saint Mary

Value Score 5.44
Average Tuition $10,710
Percentage of Students in Online Programs 48
Number of Online Programs 2

Not to be confused with the University of Saint Mary of the Lake in Chicago, the University of St. Mary is a private, liberal arts college run by the Sisters of Charity of Leavenworth, Kansas. Established as a school for women, it is now co-educational with a student body almost evenly split between men and women, 40% of whom are the first generation in their family to attend college.

Accredited by the International Assembly for Collegiate Business Education, USM's master in marketing online takes a unique, one-year approach. Nationally ranked, the 36-credit, master’s of business administration program can be completed in as little as twelve months if students take two classes a term. The curriculum is heavily weighted toward core classes, and includes just three in the marketing and advertising management specialty. Customization is possible. Courses are offered in eight-week sessions, and six start dates are available every year. Online students have access to the Personal Support Center, 24/7.

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New England College

Value Score 5.28
Average Tuition $13,560
Percentage of Students in Online Programs 92
Number of Online Programs 2

Set in the quintessential, white-clapboard New England town of Henniker, New Hampshire, New England College was founded to educate GIs returning from the Second World War. A small, private, not-for-profit school with a reputation for experiential education, NEC has about 1,200 students who attend on campus, while another 1,500 are enrolled online. They enjoy an intimate 13:1 student to faculty ratio. Business is one of the most popular fields of study.

Marketing management is one of 15 specializations in NEC's cheap, online master of business administration program. The core curriculum, covering the essentials of business, is 28 credits. The remaining 12 credits, including three required courses -- relationship selling strategies, advertising and promotion, and market research -- are dedicated to the specialty. Graduates will leave with critical-thinking and problem-solving skills and a strong understanding of new media technologies, customer lifecycles, and research techniques. Admission is on a rolling basis, and NEC prides itself on student support services.

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Central Michigan University

Value Score 5.26
Average Tuition $11,770
Percentage of Students in Online Programs 42
Number of Online Programs 2

Located in Mount Pleasant, Michigan, CMU is one of the largest universities in the country with more than 27,000 students enrolled at 40 locations across the U.S. and online. Over 200 academic programs are available to the "Chippewas," and many of them, from entrepreneurship to journalism to psychology, are nationally recognized for excellence. CMU's College of Business' master’s of business administration program is accredited by the standard-setting AACSB and considered among the best in the country.

The affordable, online marketing master program is offered by CMU's Global Campus, and it wraps nine marketing credits around the core 27 required for the MBA itself. These come from three classes: Voice of the Customer, Market and Sales Forecasting, and International Marketing. The curriculum at CMU is heavy on management skills and focuses on business in the global environment. The marketing classes help students see business through the eyes of the customer, and explore advertising, communication, brand management, new product development, market research, and public relations. CMU offers both an hour-long webinar and a free sample class to prospective students. Once enrolled, cyber students have a wealth of services available to them, like the Online Ally program and the CMU Writing and Math Assistance centers.

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University of Colorado Colorado Springs

Value Score 5.22
Average Tuition $9,916
Percentage of Students in Online Programs 40
Number of Online Programs 1

Set below Pike's Peak in the Rockies, Colorado Springs is the fastest-growing campus in the University of Colorado system. Begun as a small commuter school, UCCS is now one of the top regional universities in the West, a comprehensive institution of higher learning with 12,000 students enrolled in its six colleges. About a quarter do their learning via the web. UCCS is a national leader in cyber education, offering fully-online degree programs since 1996. And they're affordable -- students at Colorado Springs borrow about a third less than most other college kids to finance their educations.

UCCS's cheap online MBA program is nationally ranked, and has been refined for more than 20 years -- it was one of the first AACSB-accredited degrees offered entirely via the web. The master’s of business administration program was designed for maximum flexibility -- students can enroll from any undergrad background, customize their degree with eight specialties, and complete the program at their own speed, from 18 months to five years. To complete the marketing degree, students incorporate three courses, in subjects like marketing analytics, international marketing, and social media, into the 36-credit curriculum. Participants who have a baccalaureate in business or extensive work experience can often skip some foundation courses by passing a waiver exam.

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Oklahoma Christian University

Value Score 5.20
Average Tuition $13,176
Percentage of Students in Online Programs 55
Number of Online Programs 1

A private, liberal arts university affiliated with the Churches of Christ, "OC" was founded in 1950 with an inaugural class of 97. Today, it's a comprehensive institution offering 90 academic programs to more than 2,500 students. OC was one of the first schools in the nation to add wireless internet to its campus -- and give every full-time student an Ipad -- so it's no surprise the school has a strong presence on the world-wide web. The school has won an Apple Distinguished Program distinction.

OC's affordable master in marketing online is based around its traditional master’s of business administration program, and it's ranked as the #1 value for a Christian MBA. Focus areas include: ethics, hands-on learning, and practical knowledge. Marketing is one of eight areas of specialization and consists of three courses -- marketing research, e-commerce marketing and management, and international marketing -- which give students the opportunity to utilize what they're learning in real-world situations. In marketing research, for example, they do an outside project with a real client. Participants can progress at their own pace, taking a single class per term and finishing in two years, or two classes every session and completing their degree in twelve months. IT help is available all day, every day.

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Endicott College

Value Score 5.19
Average Tuition $11,155
Percentage of Students in Online Programs 51
Number of Online Programs 1

Endicott began as a tiny junior college for 27 women on the North Shore of Massachusetts. It's since evolved into a worldwide institution, with 30 learning centers spread across New England, international sites in Bermuda, Czech Republic, Spain, Switzerland, and Thailand, and a virtual campus in cyberspace. Considered one of the top regional universities in the north, the school serves 5,000 students, who pursue degrees in dozens of fields. Endicott is known for its green, seaside campus in Beverly, Mass., and for following an experience-based educational model that relies heavily on internships.

Endicott's Van Loan School of Graduate and Professional Studies' affordable online master in marketing is designed for busy business professionals. The master’s of business administration program consists of 14 courses -- 10 core and four in an area of concentration. Marketing is one of 16 potential specializations, and its classes include: customer relations management, marketing and product management, sales force management, and digital marketing. Graduates leave with a solid foundation in accounting, finance, and leadership, along with research, writing, and presentation skills. Courses are asynchronous and offered in six-week sessions. The GMAT is not required and admissions are on a rolling basis. A full slate of student support services is available at Endicott -- the Halle Library librarians are ready to help via phone and email, and tutoring, writing, and tech assistance are all a click away.

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University of the Southwest

Value Score 5.14
Average Tuition $12,528
Percentage of Students in Online Programs 100
Number of Online Programs 3

Located near the Texas border in Hobbs, New Mexico, USW is a very small, private, Christian college of 1,000 students. Accredited by the North Central Association of Colleges and Schools, the university holds no particular religious affiliation and welcomes people of all faiths. Seniors make up about 60 percent of the student population, and even a third of the undergrads are over 25. Graduate students number about 100 and are enrolled in two programs -- the MBA or the MS in Education.

USW's online MBA in marketing is comprehensive -- all textbooks, ebooks, and a laptop are provided -- and eminently customizable. Students in the affordable master’s of business administration program can select from 10 areas of specialty, including marketing, or self-design their own courses of study. The core curriculum consists of eight classes in fields like management, accounting, finance, and IT and concludes with a final capstone, organizational design and strategy capstone. Four more classes, including one in innovation, make up the marketing component. Class sizes are kept small, to enhance participation, and the degree can be completed in as little as a year. Sessions begin every eight weeks, and affordability is key -- online students pay in-state tuition.

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Thomas Edison State University

Value Score 5.08
Average Tuition $11,610
Percentage of Students in Online Programs 100
Number of Online Programs 1

Named for the pioneering inventor, Thomas Edison State University is itself an innovator -- it was one of the first schools in the nation designed specifically for adults. Based in Trenton, TESU is one of New Jersey's 11 senior public institutions for higher learning, offering more than 100 degree programs to its 17,000 students. The average age of those enrolled is 35 and students hail from every state in the union and 60 different countries.

TESU's affordable master in marketing online explores marketing in the 21st century, which has to be fast, global, and social-media savvy. The degree goes beyond the business basics and delves into data analytics, market research, and command of the new digital media. The accelerated format allows students to complete the master’s of business administration program in as few as 15 months, taking eight-week classes. TESU has a very liberal credit transfer policy -- as many as 80 credits can be transferred from a two-year school, and 120 from a four-year program. Students can "test drive" an online course or attend a webinar to learn more.

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Concordia University-Chicago

Value Score 5.01
Average Tuition $14,328
Percentage of Students in Online Programs 68
Number of Online Programs 2

Concordia University -- Chicago is one of the ten Concordia Universities run by the Lutheran Church-Missouri Synod. Set in an affluent suburb of the Windy City, CUC was founded in 1864 as a teacher's college, and has grown into a comprehensive, private, four-year, liberal arts university of 3,500. Graduate students outnumber undergrads by two to one, and students of all faiths are welcomed into the Christian learning environment. Education is still the most popular major.

The online MBA in marketing at Concordia takes a unique digital approach, preparing students to enter the world of modern marketing, where data rules, social media is the new norm, and markets are global. The affordable master’s of business administration digital marketing program combines the standard MBA with four classes -- digital strategy and planning, social media marketing communications, digital marketing analytics, and mobile marketing -- and prepares students for jobs as digital brand managers, digital marketing consultants, and directors of digital marketing strategy. Students can also select a dual specialization to follow their career interests. Enrollment is open, and Concordia guarantees tuition won't rise while you earn your degree.

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The University of Alabama

Value Score 4.97
Average Tuition $10,170
Percentage of Students in Online Programs 34
Number of Online Programs 1

The University of Alabama -- Bama for short -- is the flagship of the University of Alabama system. Everything about the Tuscaloosa institution is big, from its 2,000-acre campus, to its 37,000-student population, to its reputation among large, public universities, to Bama Pride. And it's still growing -- the incoming freshmen class was the biggest ever.

Bama by Distance, UA's virtual campus, has one of the nation's most unique online master in marketing programs. What makes the master’s of science in marketing, marketing analytics degree unusual is that it's solely a master in marketing and not an MBA with a marketing concentration. The 33-credit curriculum is based around six marketing courses, and includes five more classes in data mining and market research, giving students a strong foundation in how to read data, interpret trends, and plan marketing campaigns. Graduates leave ready to step into one of the fastest-growing fields in marketing. Accredited by the AACSB, the program is nationally ranked for quality, and it's amazingly affordable. Applicants can learn more by listening to a recorded broadcast on the Bama by Distance site.

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Washington State University

Value Score 4.80
Average Tuition $11,224
Percentage of Students in Online Programs 17
Number of Online Programs 1

Students at Washington State University call the Pullman-based institution "WSU" or "Wazzu." It's the land-grant university in the Evergreen State and the second-largest school behind the University of Washington. Almost 30,000 students attend on the main campus near the Idaho border, at four satellite schools, and online. Known for its agriculture and veterinary departments, its extension services, its small business centers, and its wealth of research activity, WSU is considered one of the top regional universities in the northwest.

WSU's Global Campus hosts a multitude of innovative, web-based degree programs, from the baccalaureate to graduate level, including a cheap, online MBA in marketing. Accredited by the AACSB, and nationally ranked for excellence, the master’s of business administration program is the same one offered on campus at the Carson College of Business. The curriculum includes seven core courses, three courses in the marketing specialty, and three capstone seminars, and is typically completed in 22-29 months. The marketing component analyzes consumer behavior and its underlying psychology, and takes an in-depth look at international marketing. The GMAT is required for admission, and students without a bachelor's in business will need to take foundational courses. Global Campus students have the support of an online advisor, access to tech help 24/7, networking opportunities for career advancement, and a new student center to help get them oriented.

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Nyack College

Value Score 4.66
Average Tuition $10,350
Percentage of Students in Online Programs 18
Number of Online Programs 1

Born on the back of a Broadway stage, Nyack College is a private, Christian non-profit with campuses in New York City, Rockland, New York, and San Juan, Puerto Rico. The school was originally a seminary and its Alliance Theological Seminary still accounts for about a third of the 2,700 students. The Master’s of Business Administration program has a scant 39 participants, which can impact what classes are available online.

The affordable online MBA is a 42-credit program that can be completed in 16 months, taking one class at a time, in sequence, in five-week sessions. The curriculum is focused on social responsibility and entrepreneurship and explores organizational change, ethics, critical thinking and decision making, research, global markets, and effective communication. Marketing is considered a potential concentration, but it requires enough students to sign up -- if there's no cohort, there's no class. Learning at Nyack is very community oriented; students interact regularly with classmates and professors, building friendships -- and networks. At the end of the program, each participant does a capstone course/project that involves creating a real business plan. Most classes are offered asynchronously, allowing students to log on at their convenience, and there are three start dates per year.

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Hope International University

Value Score 4.66
Average Tuition $16,389
Percentage of Students in Online Programs 87
Number of Online Programs 1

Founded in 1928 as the Pacific Bible Seminary, Hope International University is a private, Christian institution in the Orange County community of Fullerton, California, with a student body of 2,000 students. The vision of HIU is "to empower students through Christian higher education to serve the Church." To that end, many of the dozens of degree programs have a Biblical bent. The school's College of Business and Management, for example, is shaped by two beliefs: that God's kingdom needs competent Christian managers, and that business is a mission field.

The affordable online MBA in marketing at HIU is grounded in an ethical foundation, and includes a blend of theory and practice. Two tracks of prerequisites are required -- one in the basics of business, the other in ethics or "servant leaderships." The marketing section includes four courses, which deal with marketing research and management. Graduates are prepared to enter the workforce as mid- to upper-level management. Interested applicants can "test drive a course" or attend an online info session.

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Averett University-Non-Traditional Programs

Value Score 4.53
Average Tuition $12,495
Percentage of Students in Online Programs 50
Number of Online Programs 1

At Danville, Virginia's, Averett University, the non-traditional learners outnumber the residential undergrads. Founded as a women's college in 1859, the small, private, liberal arts college has seen its graduate and professional studies boom in recent years, online and at six adult-learner satellites. About 1,900 students attend the school, and 1,100 of those do so in non-traditional programs. Averett is affiliated with the Baptist Church, and has 33 major fields of study, and tiny class sizes of 12. Accredited by the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges, it's been nationally ranked among the best small schools in the southeast. It's also considered one of the best educational investments in the country, and its online programs are noted for their affordability.

The cheap online master in marketing at Averett is built on the back of its 41-credit master’s of business administration program, which uses cases studies, research, and team projects to develop strong management and problem-solving skills. The marketing concentration helps students analyze marketing trends, understand customer behavior, and determine how best to present their products in the global marketplace. Courses are taught in seven-week blocks, and a capstone research project is required for graduation. Averett prefers students with a baccalaureate degree in business, a 3.0 or better GPA, and three-years' of work experience, but others may apply and be assessed on a case by case basis. Each program participant is assigned a Student Success Counselor, who works with them while they earn their degree. Online students have access to the thousands of digital books, periodicals, and papers of the school's Blount Library, and the complimentary Smarthinking writing and tutoring services.

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University of Massachusetts-Amherst

Value Score 4.51
Average Tuition $12,782
Percentage of Students in Online Programs 33
Number of Online Programs 1

UMass Amherst is the flagship of the UMass System, a massive research and land-grant institution set in the Berkshires of western Massachusetts. Considered one of the top public universities in the nation, UMass Amherst is the largest public research university in New England and offers more than 200 fields of study to its 30,000 students. Roughly 7,000 students are enrolled in graduate programs. UMass is at the top of many national rankings -- for general excellence, affordability, sustainability, and exceptional online offerings.

The Isenberg School of Management's affordable online MBA in marketing is nationally ranked. Based around the master’s of business administration program, it combines general business courses with marketing electives to create a specialized degree that teaches students the ways of the global market, how to anticipate consumer needs, and how to create and market products that meet those needs. UMass has been refining its online MBA curriculum for more than a decade, and it's just as acclaimed -- and as rigorous -- as the one offered on campus. The MBA itself requires 11 core courses, which are heavy on management, strategy, and finance; marketing students can select from courses like business intelligence and analytics as well as social media strategy to fulfill the nine-credit marketing requirement. Both full- and part-time tracks are available. Applicants can even get started with as many as six credits -- before they're officially accepted into the program. Online students get access to the UMass Library, one of the largest public library systems in New England, and can ask a librarian for help 24/7.

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What Will I Learn in My Online Master’s in Marketing Program?


Master’s in marketing online programs teach skills in market research, analysis, communication, organization, project and people management, and decision-making. Programs usually require students to complete a professional internship or capstone project based on a real-world marketing problem. Typical courses include:

  • Advertising and promotion management: Advertising and promotion management professionals focus on maximizing the effectiveness of a firm’s communication strategy through developing competitive marketing strategies and persuasive communications. Topics include selecting target audiences, setting program objectives, and choosing appropriate media vehicles for delivery.
  • Brand management: Learners studying brand management focus on case analysis and literature review to explore theories and models of branding, and how to implement them strategically. Students learn how to create, build, enhance, measure, and manage brand equity.
  • Market research: Market research courses address tools and methods for gathering information about customers and competitors, including data sources and questionnaire designs. Students learn to formulate relevant marketing questions, search for appropriate methodologies, and make effective research-based decisions.
  • Consumer behavior: Courses focused on consumer behavior investigate psychological, anthropological, economic, and sociological influences on the behavior of consumers in a variety of example markets. Students apply this knowledge to produce effective marketing strategy design.


Online MBA in marketing programs offer several specialty areas of study to best suit your career path. Typical concentrations include:

  • Digital marketing and advertising: This concentration focuses on building effective strategic and analytical skills to guide company communication strategies in the digital world through media technology, use of social media platforms, and marketing promotions.
  • Project management: Project management addresses managing projects and creative teams locally and globally. Topics include building leadership skills, ensuring proper stewardship of time and resources, consumer behavior, critical thinking, and legal and ethical issues in marketing.
  • Public relations: Public relations focuses on strategies for developing, managing, and analyzing an organization’s identity and reputation through mass media outlets, social media platforms, and use of influence and persuasive communication with target audiences.
  • Marketing analytics: Marketing analytics explores modeling, market testing, optimization, and extracting insights from data collected using statistical analysis, predictive analytics, and customer databases.
  • Content marketing: Content marketing combines content creation and strategy in text, video, audio, and web formats with development of skills in multi-platform content to build and strengthen connections between consumers and brands.

Employment Outlook for Master’s in Marketing Graduates


Marketing professionals research and analyze consumer data, and apply the insights they gain to marketing strategies. Their work is needed across a variety of business contexts. Typical career paths include market research analysis, public relations, digital media marketing, advertising and sales management, project management, and consultancy. Marketers rely on creativity, persistence, excellent analytical skills, and confident decision-making to advance their careers. Good marketing professionals tend to excel in focused work habits, persuasive communication skills, and the ability to build collaborative working relationships. An interest in keeping up to date on the latest trends in target markets is also important.

Market Research Analyst

$62,560 Avg Annual Salary
Bachelor's; top positions may require a master's Degree Required

Market research analysts are responsible for understanding and documenting market conditions to help companies figure out who their consumers are, what they want, and what prices they will pay. Using qualitative and quantitative techniques, they interpret data, formulate reports, and make recommendations based on research results. A master’s degree may be required for top positions.

Projected Growth Rate 19%

Advertising, Promotions, and Marketing Manager

$127,560 Avg Annual Salary
Bachelor's; master's favored by many employers Degree Required

These professionals are responsible for directing advertising programs and policies to attract interest in services or products. They identify target contacts for promotional campaigns, inspect advertising copy, edit promotional material, and negotiate contracts. Many employers favor master’s degree holders, especially in the tech sector.

Projected Growth Rate 9%

Public Relations Specialist

$58,020 Avg Annual Salary
Bachelor's Degree Required

Public relations specialists act as advocates who create and maintain a favorable public image for the organization they represent. They design and draft media releases to influence public perception of their organization, and to increase awareness of its activities. A master’s degree can facilitate promotions to senior account executive or consultant roles.

Projected Growth Rate 6%

Product Marketing Manager

$84,898 Avg Annual Salary
Bachelor's Degree Required

Product marketing managers construct strategies to maximize profits through optimal sales while ensuring customer satisfaction. They oversee product development, launch, advertising, and pricing. They conduct consumer opinion research, influence the way products are viewed by the public, and use their product knowledge to reach target markets. Companies may favor master’s degree holders for senior management positions.

Projected Growth Rate 9%


To reach their maximum potential, many business careers require candidates to hold a master’s degree and some also require specialized certification. For marketing positions, certifications are not typically required at the entry level. However, for those who want to go the extra mile, certifications can be worthwhile career-boosters.

  • Certified Professional Services Marketer: Available through the Society for Marketing Professional Services, the CPSM requires an exam in marketing competency and four years of professional work experience, and can benefit those with careers in professional service marketing and business development.
  • Professional Researcher Certification: Market research analysts are eligible apply for the PRC, available through the Insights Association. The certification requires completion of 12 industry-related approved conference and webinar education hours, and an exam. Professionals must complete continuing education credits every two years to maintain the certification.
  • Professional Certified Marketer: Available through the American Marketing Association, the PCM certification is available in either digital marketing or marketing management. This certification is designed for marketers, managers, CMOs, and entrepreneurs. Professionals must complete continuing education units every three years to maintain the credential.


An affordable master’s degree is a long-term investment that can be your ticket to favorable job placement opportunities and higher-paying roles in the upper echelons of the marketing field. Many employers prefer to hire master’s level professionals, particularly for senior management positions in market research, advertising, and consultancy. Emerging markets also fuel worldwide growth in demand for highly educated marketing professionals. According to a recent report from Georgetown University’s Center on Education and the Workforce, obtaining a graduate degree resulted in a hefty 32% earnings boost over bachelor’s-level income for professionals in marketing and marketing research.


With a master’s in marketing, you can position yourself for advancement into senior corporate management positions and consultancy roles that offer salaries commensurate with higher responsibilities. If you are looking to advance to high-level roles, a master’s degree is likely to open paths that provide a good return on your educational investment. The table below features data from Payscale regarding average salaries for holders of master’s degrees in marketing for five popular job titles in the field.

Job Title Average salary for holders of master’s degrees in marketing
Market researcher $83,983
Project management $81,103
Marketing communications $81,148
Strategic marketing $91,395
Product marketing $116,204
Source: Payscale

Do I Need to Take the GRE or GMAT to Enroll in an Online Master’s in Marketing Program?

The Graduate Record Examination (GRE) and the Graduate Management Admissions Test (GMAT) are standardized tests required students must complete before gaining admission to most graduate schools in the United States. The exams are designed to measure prospective students’ quantitative, reasoning, writing, analytical, and critical thinking skills, and to rank applicants in comparison with their peers’ performance. The GRE is required for a variety of graduate programs. The GMAT is used exclusively for admissions decisions in business programs. Most but not all master’s in marketing online programs require the GRE or GMAT for admission. Some schools allow students with an undergraduate GPA of 3.0 or above to request a waiver of the GMAT or GRE requirement, while others accept five or more years of professional work experience as a substitute for the test requirement.

On average, GMAT or GRE study time takes learners around 100-200 hours (or two to three hours per day over a period of three months). Now that more business schools are accepting the GRE as an alternative to the GMAT, you may opt to take the test that is more suited to your strongest skills. Practice tests are available online to help you make this decision.

Accreditation for Online Master’s in Marketing Degrees

Accreditation is a mark of excellence. Through a process of peer review, regional and national accrediting agencies provide a seal of approval to assure students that schools meet an accrediting agency’s rigorous standards of quality. Regional accreditation is handled by agencies recognized by the U.S. Department of Education (ED) and the Council for Higher Education Accreditation (CHEA), and standards for national accreditation are set by CHEA-approved agencies. The national accreditation designation is awarded to technical, vocational, and distance education institutions, typically with religious affiliations or for-profit status. National accreditation requirements are therefore less standardized than those for regional accreditation.

For the online master’s in marketing, look for a school with both regional and field-specific accreditation. For example, the Association to Advance Collegiate Schools of Business is the accrediting agency for business schools.

Financing Your Online Master’s in Marketing Program

Marketing is a popular major choice, which means good news for you in the form of increased options for financial aid. Start by completing the U.S. Department of Education’s FAFSA, the first step toward qualifying for all federal financial aid. Consider fellowships, grants, federal and private loans, and career-specific scholarship awards based on need or merit. Expand your search as widely as possible. Sometimes attractive company sponsorship opportunities or reimbursements are available for students who are already employed. You can start your financial aid search at the U.S. Department of Labor database.

Marketing Scholarships

Lagrant Foundation Scholarship Up to $3,750

This scholarship is open to graduate students enrolled in a field with an emphasis in advertising, marketing, or public relations.

Scholarship Deadline: February 28

Eligibility Requirements: Student must be a U.S. citizen or permanent resident, a full-time student with a minimum GPA of 3.2, and a member of one the following ethnic groups: Asian American/Pacific Islander, African American/Black, Native American/Alaska Native, or Hispanic/Latino.

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Marketing EDGE Scholarship $1,000 - $7,000

This scholarship is open to graduate students enrolled in a field with an emphasis in advertising, marketing, or public relations.

Scholarship Deadline: Annually in December

Eligibility Requirements: Student must participate in at least one Marketing EDGE program and demonstrate an interest in marketing with a minimum GPA of 3.0.

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Hoods Memorial Scholarship $2,000

This scholarship is sponsored and administered by the EDSF, and is open to full-time students committed to pursuing a career in the document management and graphic communications marketplace.

Scholarship Deadline: May 1

Eligibility Requirements: Student’s academic focus must be in document management and graphic communication. Special consideration is given to students interested in marketing and public relations.

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New York Women In Communications Scholarship $2,500-10,000

This scholarship offered by the NYWICI is open to graduating high school seniors and undergraduate and graduate students who intend to pursue or further a career in communications.

Scholarship Deadline: Opens November 2017

Eligibility Requirements: Student must demonstrate academic excellence, financial need, and a commitment to the field of communications.

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Ray Greenly Scholarship $10,000-$25,000

The Ray Greenly Scholarship is offered by the National Retail Foundation. The scholarship is open to sophomore, junior and senior undergraduates and graduate students enrolled full-time at any accredited U.S. college or university.

Scholarship Deadline: April 2018

Eligibility Requirements: Student must demonstrate a minimum GPA of 3.0 and show how their chosen major or graduate program is relevant to digital retail.

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Mark S. Smith Scholarship $2,000

Offered by Yellow Pages United, this scholarship is open to U.S. undergraduate and graduate students majoring in marketing, graphic design, or related fields.

Scholarship Deadline: June 29

Eligibility Requirements: Student must attend school full-time and be a U.S. citizen or permanent resident with a minimum GPA of 3.0.

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American Indian Center Graduate Fellowship $1,000-5,000

Offered by the American Indian Center, this scholarship is open to American Indian and Alaska Native graduate or professional full-time, degree-seeking students in the U.S.

Scholarship Deadline: June 1

Eligibility Requirements: Student must be pursuing a master’s or doctoral degree as a full-time student at an accredited U.S. graduate school; demonstrate financial need; be an enrolled member of a federally recognized American Indian tribe or Alaska Native group, or be able to demonstrate ancestry of 1/4 degree Indian blood.

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