Tuition Comparison Guide for Online Grad Programs

Tuition Comparison

There’s great news for those graduating in the coming year with MBAs. The job market has reached a level of historic heat with nine out of 10 American companies planning to hire MBA graduates.

The slight damper: A growing percentage of students are paying for their master’s education with loans, and they’re steadily borrowing more every year dating to at least 2003, according to a College Board study.

That’s why so many professionals look closely at online programs when they begin considering prospective colleges. Ashford University stacks up favorably among online graduate programs across the country when it comes to costs. According to tuition rates published on the institutions’ pages and a US News survey:


University Cost Per Credit Hour
1. Kaplan University $441
2. Grand Canyon University $560
3. Ashford University $625
4. University of Phoenix $740
5. Capella University $757
6. North Carolina State University, Jenkins $1,350
7. St. Mary's College of California $1.357

Low tuition is important in an era when, according to the National Center for Education Statistics, the average post-graduate degree holder accumulates $58,950 in debt. In 1999 the average master’s degree student graduated with $31,930 in debt.

Costs at private schools easily can lead to a $100,000 to $200,000 total tab, particularly when the “opportunity cost” of leaving the workforce for two years is taken into account.

Still, earning an MBA does pay off, literally, in the form of higher income immediately as well as over the course of a career.

There’s more to Ashford, of course, than affordable tuition. Graduates will tell you that the university compares favorably in terms of quality of education, too. That’s in part because many of the faculty at Forbes School of Business® are business leaders themselves. They build the syllabuses around, not only the theoretical framework, but also case studies and experiences that let students clearly see how the general thinking plays out in the real world. In addition, Ashford students benefit from Forbes® Real World, Real Time applications in over 180 classrooms, integrating consistently refreshed Forbes articles and video into the curriculum.

Ashford students love the university’s always-on flexibility that gives them the freedom to study when and where they have time. The online format easily allows them to continue working, which means they may not face the “opportunity cost” that comes with quitting a job or lose valuable seniority at their current companies.

With today’s hot job market, an MBA makes more sense than ever for professionals who want to see their careers and incomes soar. It doesn’t take a finance major to see that earning a master’s at an affordable, flexible university such as Ashford just makes sense.

Written by Ashford University staff


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