2024 Best Online Business Leadership Degrees [Bachelor’s Guide]

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Explore online business leadership degree programs and find your path to success. Develop leadership skills and unlock opportunities in various industries.

A business leadership degree can be a strategic way for students who are interested in business to elevate their career prospects and take a dominant position in business settings. This program teaches the theories and practices of business leadership through a variety of methods.

Best Online Business Leadership Degrees

Business leadership programs foster leadership skills through a curriculum that is focused on psychology, organizational behavior, strategic management, and conflict management.

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The goal is for you to learn how to lead people and organizations to enduring success.

Online Business Leadership Degrees

Woman taking Online Business Leadership Degree

Leaders play vital roles in organizations by facilitating better work environments, nurturing creativity, and crafting strategies. Obtaining a degree in business leadership can be a strategic step in developing your skill sets for this essential role.

A bachelor’s in business leadership degree program allows you to develop your leadership style. You’re taught oral and written skills for business communication, business research, and analysis methods. Students are also taught to utilize critical thinking and problem-solving strategies to become effective leaders.

Business leadership degrees can help you develop a variety of skills. Graduates usually enter business settings, but they are not limited to this field. Some popular industries for these graduates include:

  • Finance
  • Nonprofit
  • Government
  • Healthcare

Organizations of all kinds require sound leadership, so the skills that are taught in a business leadership degree program are often transferable to other fields.

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Within these various industries are many potential positions for business leadership professionals. Some sample occupations include:

  • Entrepreneur
  • Consultant
  • Chief executive
  • Department manager
  • Training specialist

Business leadership degree programs are often holistic in their educational approach, which is why you may find yourself being qualified for numerous career paths.

While each program varies depending on the school of your choice, there are generally some shared subjects you will encounter across programs. These may include:

  • Accounting
  • Marketing
  • Business ethics
  • International business
  • Psychology
  • Employee behaviors and attitudes
  • Team building

Again, the subjects you study will depend on the program you choose. The focus of your coursework can also be influenced by the degree concentration you choose.

Common Business Leadership Bachelor’s Concentrations

People who works in Business Economics Industry

A business leadership program may give you the option to study a concentration alongside your major classes. A concentration may not be required to complete your degree or obtain a job, but it can be a beneficial way to increase your knowledge in a chosen field.

Some common business leadership concentrations include:

  • Business Economics. This concentration teaches you how to understand the impact the economy has on business and the global community at large.
  • Cognitive Studies. You can learn about the brain and how people learn, problem-solve, and make decisions.
  • Entrepreneurship. This concentration gives you a foundation for building and scaling your own business.
  • Management. You can form a greater understanding of business organizations so that you are better qualified to manage coworkers.
  • Information Technology. This concentration exposes you to the latest information in information technology.

These concentrations provide students with the opportunity to enrich and personalize their education. Pursuing a concentration could be a way for you to explore your passions or develop new ones within your business leadership education.

Business Leadership Careers & Salaries

Business Leadership Careers & Salaries

Organizations require efficient leaders to run properly, so a degree in business leadership may lead to many career prospects.

Graduates will likely have spent a substantial amount of time practicing and developing their critical thinking, oratory, and problem-solving skills. These skills paired with an understanding of organizational psychology and team building could prepare you for a variety of positions.

According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, below is a list of careers related to the study of business leadership.

Careers Annual Median Salaries
Computer and Information Systems Managers $159,010
Advertising, Promotions, and Marketing Managers $133,380
Financial Managers $131,710
Compensation and Benefits Managers $127,530
Sales Managers $127,490
Human Resources Managers $126,230
Public Relations Managers $125,780
Training and Development Managers $120,130
Medical and Health Services Managers $101,340
Top Executives $98,980

While a business leadership program can help you advance your professional qualifications, having a certain degree does not guarantee a specific career or salary. Many factors determine your eligibility or availability for a position.

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Many graduates go into business settings, but you aren’t relegated to a business setting. Many graduates can also be found working in education, nonprofit, or governmental settings.

Others may decide to pursue a graduate organizational leadership certificate online or on campus. With increasing experience, you may progress towards roles in management as well.

Bachelor of Business Leadership Curriculum & Courses

People taking Bachelor of Business Leadership discussing with their professor

Each school has its own approach to its education. That being said, it is fair to expect that some course topics would be shared across business leadership programs, regardless of which school you choose.

Here are examples of some popular courses that may be found in bachelors in business leadership degrees:

  • Information Literacy: You can learn the value of practical skills in the workplace, including identifying, evaluating, and applying information.
  • Digital Literacy for Life and the Workplace: You can learn how to assess technology’s impact on communication.
  • Ethics and Moral Reasoning: This course exposes you to ethical concepts so that you can develop your ability to utilize critical practical reasoning.
  • Organizational Development: This course teaches you how to merge behavioral sciences and human resources management principles to improve an organization’s efficiency.
  • Leadership and Motivation: You will learn how to utilize motivational strategies to improve an organization’s performance.
  • Written Communication: You are taught how to write for an audience while using an analytical and persuasive tone.
  • Principles of Marketing: This class gives you a foundation in marketing principles.
  • Strategic Human Resources: This course teaches you about the significance of hiring, training, and evaluation practices.
  • Business Analytics: This course emphasizes the value of conducting analytic analyses and their application to managerial planning.
  • Business Law: This course provides an overview of common law, the Uniform Commercial Code, and administrative agency law.

While individual programs will likely have different course titles, their coursework will likely teach these same fundamental principles that are essential to a business leadership degree program. Your major courses can also be influenced by your chosen degree concentration.

Admissions Requirements

Man preparing requirements for Bachelor's in Business Leadership

Admissions requirements tend to vary by school, but below are some admissions requirements you’ll likely encounter when applying for a bachelor’s in business leadership:

  • Admission application
  • Minimum GPA of 2.0 or 3.0, on average
  • High school transcripts
  • ACT or SAT scores (if required)

Many schools no longer require either ACT or SAT scores. It’s helpful to do your research to ensure that you’re up-to-date on a school’s specific requirements.


University offering Business Leadership Degrees

Obtaining a degree in business leadership is a strategic way to begin your journey into business. While earning this degree is an accomplishment, employers often give preference to graduates who received their degree from an accredited university.

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Regional accreditation is the process by which a college or university is recognized as offering a high-quality education. To become accredited, a school must pass a variety of evaluations that are administered by an accrediting agency. Attending an accredited institution can also be an eligibility factor for receiving financial aid from the government.

Financial Aid and Scholarships

Bachelor's in Business Leadership Financial Aid

Many students struggle to meet the cost of their education. Fortunately, there are many financial aid options available to those who qualify.

The primary form of financial assistance tends to be federal aid, which is aid administered through the federal government. This aid often comes in the form of student loans, grants, or work-study programs. While loans will need to be paid back, student loans typically have lower interest rates.

To see what type of need-based aid you qualify for, you can fill out the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA). Your state may offer aid programs as well. Some alternatives to government aid include scholarships and grants that may be offered by your school or outside organizations. You can explore your options to see if there are any current scholarship opportunities for which you can apply.

What Is a Business Leadership Degree?

Marketing Manager discussing with the team

A business leadership degree is a bachelors program that aims to equip students with the necessary knowledge and skills to succeed in leadership positions throughout business. These programs attempt to make students the best possible leaders by nurturing their own innate skills.

Students take classes across a variety of disciplines, including psychology and marketing, so that they can have a well-rounded understanding of leadership within a business setting. Students can also learn the role of problem-solving and human nature through practical application.

Is Business Leadership a Good Degree?

Sales Manager discussing with the team

Yes, business leadership is a good degree for many undergraduate students. This program may give you a broad knowledge of leadership that can be applied to other industries. Within a business setting, some graduates utilize their knowledge to build their own organization.

The median annual wage for management occupations overall is $102,450 (Bureau of Labor Statistics). Here are some potential career paths to give you an idea of the versatility of a business leadership degree:

  • Human resource manager
  • Development manager
  • Training specialist
  • Operations manager
  • Public relations manager

This is a beneficial degree for many, but whether it’s right for you will depend on your specific goals.

What Can You Do with a Business Leadership Degree?

Human Resources Manager discussing with an HR Specialist

Earning a bachelor’s degree in business leadership may be a strategic path for people who want to thrive in an organization or pave their own path as entrepreneurs.

These graduates often take on a variety of positions across various industries. Some may become consultants, administrators, or managers in a range of fields, including finance, human resources, healthcare, marketing, nonprofits, and more.

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Some business leadership majors also go on to become department directors or chief executives. While many graduates do go on to become leaders in their field, a number of factors contribute to a person’s career outlook.

Some graduates even continue on their educational journeys and earn a masters degree or an EdD in Organizational Leadership online or on campus.

How Long Does It Take to Get an Online Business Leadership Degree?

Student pursuing Online Business Leadership Degree

A bachelors degree in business leadership typically requires students to complete around 120 credit hours. With a traditional 16 week semester schedule, a bachelors can generally be completed in 4 years if you’re a full-time student.

Taking courses in this online leadership degree program may let you complete your courses in less than 4 years, but this depends on your circumstances. Some students take longer to complete their coursework when studying online because the flexibility allows them to structure their education around their schedule.

The amount of time it takes for you to complete a business leadership program will ultimately depend on your goals and circumstances.

What’s the Difference Between a Bachelor in Business Leadership vs. Management Degree?

Business leadership programs bear certain similarities with business management programs, and some schools may only offer one of these programs. So, it’s helpful to understand their differences.

Business Leadership Business Management
  • Focused on how you can lead people to better an organization
  • More people focused than organization focused
  • Covers topics like leadership, team development, organizational behavior, conflict management, and communication
  • Focused on the administrative side of business
  • Teaches how to strategically manage an organization, both internally and externally
  • Covers topics like accounting, financial management, human resources, information technology, and logistics

Both degree paths can help you elevate your qualifications in a business setting. Understanding which program best fits your goals is essential to making the most of your education.

Is a Business Leadership Bachelor’s Degree Worth It?

Public Relations Manager and staff reviewing some data

Yes, a business leadership bachelor’s degree is worth it for many students. There are many reasons to pursue a degree in business leadership, but it all comes down to your goals.

Business leadership skills are vital to running a successful organization. Those with business leadership skills often have the power to grow a business through their ability to unite coworkers behind a cause and inspire trust. According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, management occupations are expected to grow about 8% over the next ten years, which is faster than average.

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Graduates with a degree in business leadership are in-demand and could play vital roles in organizations in a range of fields.

Universities Offering Online Bachelors in Business Leadership Degree Programs

Methodology: The following school list is in alphabetical order. To be included, a college or university must be regionally accredited and offer degree programs online or in a hybrid format.

Antioch University

Antioch University campus

Antioch University offers a BS in Applied Technology and Business Leadership that can be earned in a flexible online format. Coursework can be completed from anywhere with internet connection at whatever time is most convenient. This is a degree completion program for those who already hold an associate degree.

Antioch University is accredited by the Higher Learning Commission.

Arizona State University

Arizona State University campus

Arizona State University offers an online program for a Bachelor of Arts in Business with a concentration in Global Leadership. It requires the completion of 41 classes. Each class is 7.5 weeks long. The curriculum consists of courses such as International Political Economy, Comparative Politics, Cross-Cultural Management, and Leading Organizations.

Arizona State University is accredited by the Higher Learning Commission.

Bellevue University

Bellevue University campus

Bellevue University offers a Bachelor of Science in Business Leadership and Management that can be earned 100% online. The program uses an accelerated cohort format. In this format, students take one course at a time with the same group of classmates, and they only need to register once. The curriculum emphasizes hands-on learning and real-world results.

Bellevue University is accredited by the Higher Learning Commission.

Bethel University

Bethel University campus

Bethel University offers a BS in Leadership. Students can choose the general program or choose a concentration in Management, Healthcare Management, Information Technology, Customer Relationship Management, or Fire Science. Potential courses include Survey of Marketing, Organizational Analysis, and Strategic Management.

Bethel University is accredited by the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges.

Culinary Institute of America

Culinary Institute of America campus

The Culinary Institute of America offers an online program for a Bachelor of Business Administration in Food Business Leadership. This is a part-time program designed for working professionals who already hold an associate degree. Most students take 3 to 9 credit hours each semester. Online students have opportunities to interact through forums and discussion boards.

The Culinary Institute of America is accredited by the Middle States Commission on Higher Education.

Immaculata University

Immaculata University campus

Immaculata University’s BS in Business Leadership program uses an accelerated online format. The curriculum consists of courses such as Technology in Decision Making, Global Leadership, Project Planning and Implementation, and Emergency and Risk Management.

All courses are taught by faculty members with extensive business experience. The program seeks to prepare graduates for work in profit and nonprofit organizations.

Immaculata University is accredited by the Middle States Commission on Higher Education.

Johnson & Wales University

Johnson and Wales University campus

Johnson & Wales University offers a Bachelor of Science in Business Administration—Leadership Studies. The program consists of 8 week courses that are 100% online, with multiple start dates every year. The student-to-faculty ratio is just 15-to-1, and the program’s instructors have real-world experience.

JWU is accredited by the New England Commission of Higher Education.

Liberty University

Liberty University campus

Liberty University offers a Bachelor of Science in Business Administration—Leadership that can be earn 100% online. Each course is 8 weeks long. Students take an average of 3.5 years to graduate. The curriculum consists of courses such as Project Management, Leadership Theory and Practice, and Team Dynamics.

Liberty University is accredited by the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges.

Lipscomb University

Lipscomb University campus

At Lipscomb University, students can earn a Bachelor of Arts, a Bachelor of Science, or a Bachelor of Professional Studies in Business Leadership. All of these programs are available online with 8 week courses or in a flexible format where students can study at their own pace. The curriculum consists of courses such as Introduction to Accounting, Marketing Concepts for Leaders, and Introduction to Research Methods.

Lipscomb University is accredited by the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges.

Marshall University

Marshall University campus

Marshall University’s Bachelor of Arts in General Business is available in a fully online format geared toward nontraditional students. The program is designed to provide flexibility so students can study anytime from anywhere with an internet connection. Internship opportunities are available to help students gain hands-on experience.

Marshall University is accredited by the Higher Learning Commission.

Southeastern University

Southeastern University campus

Southeastern University offers a Bachelor of Business Administration with an optional concentration in Business Leadership. This program is designed for working professionals and the courses offer the perfect balance of business theory and practice. Students explore various leadership styles and learn how to apply them.

Southeastern University is accredited by the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges.

Southwestern Christian University

Southwestern Christian University campus

Southwestern Christian University offers an online program for a BS in Business Leadership. There are also on-campus classes that meet just one night a week. The curriculum consists of courses like Introduction to Business, Foundations of Leadership, Organizational Communication, and Strategic Management. SWCU aims to provide flexibility and a Christ-centered education.

Southwestern Christian University is accredited by the Higher Learning Commission.

Spurgeon College

Spurgeon College campus

Spurgeon College offers a BA in Business Leadership. Classes are available online and on campus, and Spurgeon provides small class sizes and a Christian environment. The curriculum consists of courses like Introduction to Business and Finance, Principles of Financial Accounting, Principles of Managerial Accounting, and Data and Information Systems.

Spurgeon College is accredited by the Higher Learning Commission.

University of Arizona

University of Arizona campus

The University of Arizona offers a Bachelor of Arts in Business Leadership. Courses are 5 or 6 weeks long and taken one at a time. Students may choose an emphasis in Business Economics, Cognitive Studies, Entrepreneurship, Health and Wellness, Real Estate Studies, or Supply Chain Management.

The University of Arizona is accredited by the Higher Learning Commission.

William Jessup University

William Jessup University campus

William Jessup University offers an online program for a BA in Leadership with a specialization in Business Leadership. It includes an embedded minor in Bible studies and culminates with a research experience and applied project. The curriculum consists of courses such as Foundation in Business, Personal Finance, and Project Management Tools and Techniques. The program can typically be completed in 3 to 4 years.

William Jessup University is accredited by the WASC Senior College and University Commission.

Getting Your Bachelors in Business Leadership Degree Online

Man taking Bachelors in Business Leadership Degree Online

A degree in business leadership teaches students how to become vital members of an organization, inspiring trust and fostering a sense of community among team members. The skills you learn in this program could help you guide a business or team toward success.

Leadership positions are in high demand, and graduates may have a variety of career opportunities following the completion of their degree. Business leadership coursework also exposes you to subjects that you may apply to other aspects of your life.

The sooner you begin researching accredited colleges and universities, the sooner you may find the online business leadership program that’s right for you.

Ready to start your journey?
David has a Bachelor of Arts in English with a concentration in Film from Syracuse University. While in school, much of his time was dedicated to Syracuse’s literary magazine, both as a writer and editor. David’s current interests include literary and film studies as well as social justice.