CLEMSON, South Carolina – Clemson University’s MBA program has never taken a one-size-fits-all approach to delivering an advanced business degree. So, in addition to the numerous options it has for obtaining an MBA, the program is adding a unique and holistic online alternative.

MBA, online, interactive

An new MBA online option will give students more flexibility in learning.
Image Credit: Brandon Zellars

Students soon can receive an MBA their way: entirely online, either in a real-time, interactive setting or through specially designed coursework they can access as their schedules permit. The university’s board of trustees recently approved the College of Business’ Greenville-based program to enhance and expand its online degree delivery.

“Clemson MBA Online is a customized approach to earning an advanced business degree that gives students choices,” said Greg Pickett, director of MBA programs and senior associate dean of the College of Business. “This model allows students to consume their education in real time or on their own time. And the ‘own time’ lecture model isn’t simply a recorded version of the interactive, real-time lecture. It utilizes many digital components and instructional design learning supplements that give remote students a complete Clemson MBA experience.”

MBA Online’s official launch is the fall of 2019, but Pickett said 24 months of testing and building content has commenced, including technological upgrades to classrooms.

“We are building content and testing the technology to fine-tune the experience for our online students,” he said. “The flexibility and innovativeness MBA Online will deliver to students who can’t be physically here will be high quality in content and delivery.”

Jane Layton, MBA academic program director, said MBA Online was borne out of need and a desire to meet students’ evolving learning preferences.

“The program we are building will enable working professionals, including those who are transferred after starting the program, to finish their degrees at Clemson from a location of their choice. And, for those whose schedules simply don’t allow for a structured class routine, this will enable them to learn whenever and wherever they want,” she said.

Pickett and Layton said today’s MBA student is seeking an education that is conducive to their lifestyle and delivered in a manner that is convenient.

“Learning digitally is a natural choice for many students and it is especially true for working professionals,” Pickett said. “More and more students are seeking to consume their education conveniently and in a manner with which they are familiar. MBA Online gives them a choice to show up electronically to ask questions when the class is scheduled or to learn class content at 2 a.m. from a location they choose.”

In the last six years, Clemson’s advanced business degree programs have more than doubled in size at Greenville ONE. Pickett said the addition of a flexible “learn from anywhere” option will open the door to those whose schedules don’t allow for classroom requirements.

“We expect a healthy demand from students who want to pursue a Clemson MBA but are hindered by schedule restrictions. This innovative education model of the future has the potential to double our enrollment,” he said.

Layton said the virtual experience will extend beyond curriculum.

“What we are designing is a complete online encounter for these MBA students,” Layton said. “Even engagements with career services, orientation and faculty will be built for our online population, so every MBA candidate can be a real part of the Clemson experience.”