By now, you may have seen the endless debates about the worth of a master of business administration degree. To be fair, MBA students make sizeable investments in both time and money to complete these programs. If you’re mulling over pursuing an MBA, you’re justified in ensuring that you’ve considered all the facts before jumping into the fray. After all, wise business professionals do evaluate their decisions beforehand, whether by comparisons or a cost-benefit analysis, to ensure they’re making the best choices. However, some evidence that indicates how an MBA may help your future career prospects is worth considering.

The Price of an MBA Program Vs. Its Value

The first thing you should assess when deciding whether to study for an MBA is the cost of attendance. That can vary widely depending on what school you select. Investopedia revealed in 2016 that the average cost of a two-year MBA program in the United States was $125,000. Nevertheless, there are a few factors that might increase that price tag. Selecting a school where you’ll attend as a residential student can drive up the cost, due to room and board. Secondly, you also must account for the income you could lose while studying in a full-time residential program.

One easy way to sidestep these bloated expenses is to choose a distance learning program such as Maryville’s online MBA. Their curriculum prices out at a total of around $28,000 for tuition, depending on your chosen area of concentration. Since the courses are completed in an asynchronous learning environment and are structured to permit students to continue working full-time, there’s a good chance you won’t have to forgo your salary during your studies.

Moreover, it’s also vital to think of the time commitment involved when comparing programs. For instance, you may be able to complete programs such as Maryville’s within a year, or within two to three years if you prefer to attend part-time. While you might need to commit the same amount of time studying in a customary MBA program, you’ll have the advantage of being able to work during your studies instead of losing time away from your career.

Both Tangible and Intangible Rewards Can Come With Study

Potential business program students should consider the return on investment for the money they’re forking over for an MBA degree. In this case, the ROI might be computed using possible salary incomes post-graduation. With average starting wages after matriculation ranging between $93,000 annually for human resources professionals to $187,000 for financial managers, recouping the costs paid for that degree may be easier than you think. Furthermore, your employer may bankroll part or all your education if it offers a tuition reimbursement benefit.

In addition, several intangible bonuses are possible for MBA students. A Forbes online article disclosed that these programs can also offer them the support of extending one’s professional network. Also, entrepreneurs may gain practice for starting their own companies, with the safety nets of getting feedback from their professors and the ability to make non-critical mistakes from which one can learn.

Doing What’s Best for Your Career

Increasingly, earning a graduate degree is a way to encourage upward mobility in one’s career. While entry-level positions in marketing, human resources, accounting and finance can be had by those with undergraduate degrees alone, management positions frequently open up to those with master’s degrees or greater. Picking the right MBA program, however, is a crucial aspect to paving the way for one’s advancement opportunities. Choosing a curriculum with a good return on investment and that provides sound learning opportunities is wise. Consider the time and financial commitments carefully, and you’ll likely pick a program that’s just right for you.