Online MBA Program Prerequisites

  • Last Post 08 December 2016
Flutterfly posted this 24 March 2016 - Last edited 08 December 2016

I would love to start an MBA program. The problem is, the schools for which I have applied require nearly an associate's degree in credits for prerequisites. If there is a school with very few prerequisites, that would be great, too.

 I have my B.Sc. in Biology and I also have a 7-12 teaching certification.  I got a 600 on the GMAT this year, which I can improve if I study. Obviously I had mostly the sciences in my studies, which consisted mostly of chemistry and biology. I did a lot of statistical analysis in the sciences, too.

Anyone have any suggested schools that have prereqs incorporated or very few prereqs?

 Thanks in advance!



Thanks in advance!

Kayleigh posted this 08 December 2016

Hi there Flutterfly,

Which online schools have you been looking at?

MBA prerequisites are in place to increase the likelihood that each student will be prepared to succeed in the program. Students who do not have a basic background in business may have a disadvantage and find it hard to catch up to other students. While it can definitely be frustrating, the university really has the student in mind when creating these requirements.

For example, the most affordable online MBA in the country is offered by Eastern New Mexico University. (Total tuition is $8,030.70—almost $18,000 less than the national average!)

Eastern New Mexico University requires the following for acceptance into their MBA program:

Accounting 201 Introduction to Financial Accounting


Accounting 202 Introduction to Managerial Accounting


Business 230 Legal Environment of Business


Economics 200 Survey of Economics OR


Economics 221 Principles of Macroeconomics AND


Economics 222 Principles of Microeconomics


Finance 315 managerial Finance


Marketing 313 management of Organizational Behavior


Marketing 201 Principles of Marketing


Statistics 213 Statistical Methods


This does indeed seem like a lot of prerequisites but you do have some options. You mention you have taken a few statistical science courses. You may be able to get the “Statistics 213 Statistical Methods” course fulfilled with your undergraduate statistics course.

If you dig into alternative ways to fulfill pre-reqs at Eastern New Mexico, you actually just need to be able to pass competency exams in these subject areas:

“Receive a passing grade on equivalent College Level Examination Program (CLEP) exams, including but not limited to the following subjects (and others as they may be approved by the student's graduate advisory committee)":

  • Financial Accounting, equivalent to ACCT 201 Introduction to Financial Accounting
  • Introductory Business Law, equivalent to BUS 230 Legal Environment of Business
  • Principles of Macroeconomics, equivalent to ECON 221 Principles of Macroeconomics
  • Principles of Microeconomics, equivalent to ECON 222 Principles of Microeconomics
  • Principles of Management, equivalent to MGT 313 Management and Organizational Behavior
  • Principles of Marketing, equivalent to MKT 201 Principles of Marketing

"Receive a minimum score of 80% on the final exam for the following equivalent Common Body of Knowledge courses offered by Ivy Software™:

  • Financial Accounting: A Management Perspective, equivalent to ACCT 201 Introduction to Financial Accounting
  • Managerial Accounting, equivalent to ACCT 202 Introduction to Managerial Accounting
  • Business Law Essentials, equivalent to BUS 230 Legal Environment of Business
  • Fundamentals of Economics, equivalent to ECON 200 Survey of Economics
  • Understanding Corporate Finance, equivalent to FIN 315 Managerial Finance I
  • Principles of Management: The Critical Essentials, equivalent to MGT 313 Management and Organizational Behavior
  • Principles of Marketing, equivalent to MKT 201 Principles of Marketing
  • Business Math and Statistics, equivalent to STAT 213 Statistical Methods I

So, you have a couple of options.

First, you could enroll in a college course company like Straighterline. Straighterline offers many college courses for a flat monthly fee, the faster you work through them, the cheaper they will be. They are largely self study with tutoring available. If you are an independent learner, these can be a great option. While Straighterline does not award actual college credits, the courses are largely seen as ACE equivalency credits which your chosen school may allow you to use for your prerequisite requirements. Even if they do not, you will have the knowledge to pass the competency exams that may be offered as an alternative. Before enrolling make sure to check with your chosen school to verify that they will either accept the ACE credits (and how many) or allow you to take competency exams. This would be your cheapest (and potentially fastest, depending on how much time you have to dedicate) option to gain the knowledge needed to complete the competency exams.

View Straighterline Business course offerings here.

Right now, you can actually get a business textbook free with your enrollment, which would save you additional cash. (A savings of $175!)

Your second option would be to enroll at a community college. This could be a local community college in your area or one online. Make sure to compare prices as you may be able to save more money by going to school at a community college online that is based in a certain geographic region of the United States (the south and the midwest).

View a list of online community colleges here.

This option would require more money and time but, depending on your learning style, may be preferable. Again, make sure to check with the business school you’d to enroll at to make sure they will accept prerequisites if completed at whichever community college you choose. This shouldn’t be an issue, as it’s common for students to complete prerequisites at another school, but it’s always best to check to avoid wasting time and money.

Overall, it’s always good to contact your desired online business school and talk to admissions about your plan to fulfill pre-requisite courses. They may be able to work with you or provide additional options to help you get ready to enter the MBA program. After all, they want you to enroll, they don’t want the process to be more difficult than it needs to be!

As far as the other pre-requisites go, you’ll probably qualify for regionally accredited online business schools with your current GMAT score. Again, you’ll need to check and make sure for each. GetEducated lists and required exams and scores in each MBA profile. Depending, on the AACSB accredited school, you may need to re-take.

See AACSB accredited online business schools that do not require the GMAT here.

Here are some additional resources to help you choose the best MBA program:

Regional Online MBA Rankings

AACSB Online MBA Rankings

Who offers the cheapest online MBA?

Do I need an AACSB online MBA?

This should set you on the right path toward your MBA! Let us know if we can help you with anything else. And remember, Get Educated before you enroll!



Online Education Expert