The Spears School of Business at Oklahoma State University continues to show its master’s degree programs offered online are among the nation’s best. The master’s programs offered in the Watson Graduate School of Management were selected No. 37 in the recent U.S. News & World Report’s Best Online Education Program rankings, released Tuesday. 

This is the first time U.S. News has numerically ranked online programs, and nearly 200 schools across the United States were evaluated in the 2013 rankings.  OSU is the second highest Big 12 school in the rankings; only West Virginia is ranked higher.

“We take graduate business education very seriously at OSU and the Spears School, as evidenced by our recent creation of the Watson Graduate School of Management,” said Larry Crosby, dean of the Spears School.

“Our commitment to online programs is a logical extension of our land-grant university charter, which is very much about providing access to higher education. Our online graduate programs reach students in 48 states and 14 countries. A sizeable portion of our students are active U.S. military at domestic and foreign bases. Others are working parents needing a flexible schedule or corporate employees assigned to remote locations far from a campus. We believe in giving smart, dedicated and accomplished individuals a pathway to further professional development regardless of their situation or where they might live. It is the OSU way,” said Crosby. 

It’s not the first time for the Spears School to be highlighted in rankings by U.S. News. The school was ranked among the top 14.9 percent of business schools in the nation during the 2012 Business School Rankings, and its part-time MBA program was among the top 28 percent.

In addition, the Spears School’s programs have been recognized as some of the nation’s “Best Buys,” earning top-10 rankings in 2012 for providing some of the best high quality, yet affordable, online business degrees in the U.S. The MBA program was ranked 10th among the 139 competing online MBAs from AACSB-accredited business schools in October.

Also, the Master’s in Telecommunication Management was No. 7 among 93 competing online masters in management programs and the Master’s in Management in Information Systems was ranked eighth among the 93 online peer degree programs on the same rating list.

 “We also strive to be a leader in online graduate programs, offering very high quality at a reasonable price. This is accomplished, in part, by maintaining consistent excellence across our online and onsite courses, providing the same graduate faculty, the same curriculum and the same course requirements,” Crosby said. 

OSU’s Watson Graduate School of Management offers degree programs via distance learning in:

  •  MBA
  • M.S. in Entrepreneurship
  • M.S. in Management Information Systems
  • M.S. in Telecommunications Management
  • Graduate Certificate in Business Data Mining
  • Graduate Certificate in Information Assurance
  • Graduate Certificate in SAS Business Analytics (for MBA students)

The school will offer these new programs online beginning in the fall:

  • Graduate Certificate in Non-profit Management
  • Graduate Certificate in Business Sustainability
  • Graduate Certificate in Entrepreneurship

Also, the Spears School offers undergraduate degree completion programs in:

  • B.S. in General Business
  • B.S. in Management

“Our goal at the Spears School of Business is to accommodate individuals’ busy personal and professional work schedules and provide opportunities for our students to obtain advanced degrees online, anytime and anywhere,” said Shona Gambrell, assistant director of the distance-learning program.

Five different factors were weighted in the U.S. News rankings, including student engagement (28 percent), admissions selectivity (25 percent), peer reputation (25 percent), faculty credentials and training (11 percent), and student services and technology (11 percent). 

The Spears School’s ranking will be included in both the Best Graduate Schools 2014 and Best Colleges 2014 printed guidebooks, published by U.S. News.

The Best Online Graduate Business Programs are available via U.S. News website:

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