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Best Online MBA Programs 2024 | QS Rankings

What are the world’s best online MBA programs in 2024? Find out in our breakdown of the QS Online MBA Rankings

Mon Apr 29 2024


The results are out: Imperial College Business School boasts the world’s best Online MBA program, according to the latest QS Online MBA Rankings. 

Leading the QS list of the world’s best online MBA programs for 2024, the UK’s Imperial College Business School has beaten off the competition to top the ranking for the first time, beating out Spain's IE Business School which held the spot for the previous six consecutive years. 

IE ranks second in 2024, while another UK institution, Warwick Business School, places third. This is a notable change as IE and Warwick finished joint first last year. 

Also in this year's list, Australian Graduate School of Management (AGSM) at the University of New South Wales places fourth and Indiana Kelley School of Business in the US ranks fifth. 

When you’re considering Online MBA programs, there are various questions you should ask yourself. Where should I study an Online MBA? What is the best value Online MBA? And is an Online MBA worth the money?

That’s where the annual QS Online MBA ranking comes in, breaking down the top online MBA programs worldwide. 

QS ranks the quality of online MBA programs using four criteria which are given different weights to produce an overall score: faculty and teaching (35%), employability (30%), class profile (30%), and class experience (5%).

The Best Online MBAs

With interest in Online MBAs increasing in the wake of the coronavirus pandemic, rankings like the QS list are a good place to start researching and comparing programs.

In 2024, Imperial College Business School earns a score of 100 for class experience and employability (the highest score out of all programs) and ranks fourth for faculty and teaching. 

UK business schools are well-represented in the 2024 QS ranking: 13 out of 72 entrants are offered by UK business education programs. While Imperial rose to first, Warwick moved down to third position from the previous year in 2023 and Alliance Manchester dropped slightly from fifth to sixth.

Elsewhere in Europe, Italy’s Polimi Graduate Management offers an Online MBA program which places joint eighth in this ranking, with an outstanding faculty and teaching score of 100, the best in the whole list.

Second place, IE Business School also has a very strong faculty and teaching score of 99.5 and an overall score of 95 out of 100. 

However, business schools in the United States dominate the overall list, with 32 programs in total—and four of the top 10 online MBA programs—offered by US schools.

According to QS, Indiana University Kelley School of Business offers the best-ranked Online MBA program in the US, ranking fifth overall. Kelley excels in the employability category, boasting a score of 96.7 out of 100—third out of every school ranked by QS.

The Asia-Pacific’s best Online MBA program, offered by the Australian Graduate School of Management (AGSM) at the University of New South Wales (UNSW) Business School, comes in fourth, with an overall score of 88.9.

The Asia-Pacific region only saw seven Online MBAs ranked among the top 75. 

Is an Online MBA worth it?

Studying an MBA online allows you to study alongside your work. You won’t miss out on your salary, plus you’ll make savings on living and travel costs.

Compared to the cost of a full-time MBA, Online MBA programs are typically more affordable. Two of the QS top 10 make our list of affordable Online MBA programs.

Imperial Business School charges roughly $57,000 for its two-year program, while the 17 month and two year programs at IE Business School and Warwick Business School will set you back around $64k and $49k, respectively.

Online MBA programs in the US are often a larger investment. For example, Kenan-Flagler charges $126k and Carnegie Mellon charges $109k for their Online MBAs. 

The cheapest online MBA programs in the QS top 10 is offered by Alliance Manchester Business School, at around $40k in tuition. 

With the rise in the number of AACSB-accredited business schools offering fully online MBA programs over the years, there’s no reason why an Online MBA can’t provide just as high-quality education as in-person MBA programs.

In deciding whether an online MBA is worth the money, you should consider how the flexible format of the program will help you reach your career goals and whether an online learning environment is something you’d find enjoyable and productive.

Shorter Online course options

Another popular version of online delivery of business management skills is through shorter, online courses at the fraction of the cost of an MBA. 

This continues to be a very popular option for Ivy League universities such as Harvard Business School and Columbia Business School who run courses for several weeks at as little as $1,750, covering entrepreneurship, economics, and business analytics. 

QS Best Online MBA Orograms: 2022 | 2020 | 2019 | 2018 | 2017 | 2016