How Much Does MBA Cost?

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$ State University: $20,000-$50,000 $ $ Online University: $8,000-$60,000 $ $ $ Private University: $50,000-$120,000

Very popular, the masters in business administration are in general two year full-time programs, however some can be completed in one year, while other local state programs can be taken part-time or during evenings.

The MBA programs usually cover general business theory and practice, but can also offer focus on fields such as marketing, accounting, and entrepreneurship.

Typical Costs

The Master of Business Administration degree usually is priced between $40,000-$120,000, covering tuition and fees, however the total costs for a two-year program including books, insurance, room and board can go up to $50,000-94,000 per year, or $100,000-$200,000 for a two-year program.

At a state university, the MBA usually costs $20,000-$60,000 per year for residents or $30,000-$65,000 for non-residents.

This tuition at the University of Michigan, for example, costs $52,394 per year for residents or $57,394 for non-residents, and approx. $72,000-$78000 annually including books, fees, insurance, and room and board.

At the same time, at a private university, an MBA usually costs $50,000-$120,000 for tuition and fees.

The MBA from the University of Chicago, for example, usually costs $59,000 a year for tuition, which makes total costs of approx. $92,000 annually including books, insurance, rent, food, and personal costs.

The online or distance-learning MBA usually costs $8,000-$60,000, with higher prices for non-residents studying with a state university.

Florida Atlantic University, for example, costs $13,720 for state residents and $40,000 for non-residents for a 40-credit-hour online MBA program.

What Is Included

  • All MBA programs have a wide range of required credits, from 30 to 60 in order to cover the program.
  • The MBA programs typically range from one to three years from start to finish, where the two-year program is the most common.
  • If this is a shorter program, students must take more classes at a time.
  • Certain two-year or longer programs cater to working professionals, and provide a few night classes at a time.
  • Most MBA programs present students with a wide range of business topics and concentrate in finance and accounting, human resources and health care administration, information systems, international business, marketing, entrepreneurship, finance, or management.

Additional Costs

  • The full-time MBA students have additional costs for food and accommodation, books and supplies, transportation and health insurance, as well as personal expenses, which can reach to  $20,000-$70,000 on the top the student’s tuition and fees.
  • The University of Michigan, for example, the costs for books, housing, health care and personal costs are estimated to be $20,780 total, while at Harvard Business School these costs start from $34,600 for students who are single and go up to $66,000 for married students supporting two children.
  • The accommodation and board usually costs $10,000-$20,000, setting as an example the costs for housing and food of $10,972 at Brigham Young University in Utah.
  • At the same time, the books and supplies for an MBA usually range from $1,000 to $4,000; and as an example, the MBA program books at the University of Chicago costs $2,100.
  • The transportation costs for a residential MBA program usually costs $600-$3,000 per year.
  • The transportation for the MBA at Babson University in Massachusetts, for example, costs $1,580-$2,130.
  • The personal expenses for an MBA student living on campus, such as health insurance, typically cost $3,000-$10,000.
  • The health insurance for MBA students attending the University of Pennsylvania, for example, are approx. $2,974.


  • Certain universities provide a limited number of assistantships for master’s programs.
  • When granted an assistantship, a student can work part-time doing researches or teaching courses at the university while earning a stipend which can be used towards tuition and other expenses.
  • The Saint Joseph’s University assistants in MBA program in Philadelphia, for example, earn $4,000 annually and receive free tuition for eight courses per year in exchange for working 16 hours each week.
  • Scholarships are available to students who meet program qualifications including a high GPA or a proven financial need.
  • The Scholarships and Grants lists several funding opportunities for MBA students.

Shopping For An MBA

  • US News & World Report presents the graduate schools in a searchable database.
  • Poets and Quants, a social network for getting a graduate degree, presents the 20 most expensive MBA programs.
  • Based on a survey, the highest tuition is at the University of Pennsylvania’s Wharton School, while the highest overall program cost is at Columbia Business School.
  • Get Educated, a consumer group ranking universities, provides its top 51 online MBA programs from a survey conducted in 2009.

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