The 10 Best Online Ph.D.s in Business Law programs can open up exciting career options in 2020. While a Master's Degree in Business qualifies you for many different career options, if you're looking for a higher-level administrative position with a larger salary, then a Ph.D. in Business Law may be the right option for you. A Ph.D. in Business Law opens up even more avenues, including roles in consulting, human resources management, government regulations, and nonprofits dealing with legal liabilities, ethical business aspects, and more. These 10 Best Online Ph.D.s' in Business Law programs offer flexible scheduling paired with a rigorous, comprehensive curriculum that will leave you well-prepared for your new career path.
FINDING AN ONLINE Ph.D. IN BUSINESS LAW
There are many available online Ph.D. in Business Law programs to choose from, so it's important that the program you select is the right fit in terms of your career goals, your schedule, and your focus area of study. The degrees in this list cover a wide range of topics such as business litigation, partnerships, contracts, intellectual property, and more. Most feature a heavy emphasis in research methods and presentation skills, which are talents that nearly any advanced business position will require. Some allow you to tailor the program to your interests, either by choosing a specialization, concentration or by selecting elective courses that align with your desired career path.
When you're already working full-time in the business world, you need a program that accommodates your current schedule. Many of the following schools provide degrees entirely online and without any residential attendance requirements. Some of the programs are hybrid formats, featuring most coursework online with periodic on-campus intensives. Because these programs are about 60 credit hours each, they take multiple years to complete. However, some offer fast-track accelerated options, and others offer flexibility in taking more time than average to complete the coursework. All of the degrees are designed with working professionals in mind, and you're sure to find a program that's just right for you.
RANKING THE 10 BEST ONLINE Ph.D.s' IN BUSINESS LAW
While you're on your way to earning your Ph.D. or Doctorate within your field, the editors at Online PhD Programs are already practicing doctors of their craft: ranking the best online Ph.D. programs. To be featured on our annual rankings online doctorates must satisfy four coinciding requirements: accreditation, research and scholarship doctorate certification, NSF recognition, and institutional association with peer-reviewed academia.
Each degree is then ranked using information provided – primarily – through the National Center for Education Statistics and the U.S. Department of Labor's Occupational Outlook Handbook. The data collected is scored through a series of weighted categories to represent seven crucial aspects of what makes an online doctorate valuable to future students. Online program quality and presence are joined by industry salaries, student reviews, degree exclusivity, costs, and completion rates to determine the best online doctorates available. For a comprehensive breakdown of how we categorize and source data, please visit our methodology page.
#1. BELLEVUE UNIVERSITY
Bellevue University's Ph.D. in Human Capital Management is an online degree that focuses on current global business practices. Upon graduating from the program, students are qualified to hold a variety of positions such as compensation and benefits managers, human resource managers, industrial-organizational psychologists, and more. Bellevue applicants should have a minimum GPA of 3.0 from a previous graduate experience and have five years of professional experience.
Located in Bellevue, Nebraska, Bellevue University was founded in 1966. Over 50,000 students have graduated from the university, which offers over 80 degrees within its four colleges. Washington Monthly included Bellevue University in its 2018 ranking of the Top 10 Colleges for Adult Learners. Bellevue University has also earned the Military Friendly School Designation, published in G.I. Jobs, for the past ten years in a row. Additionally, College Factual included Bellevue University in their top 10 ranking of the Best Colleges for Returning Adults and Non-Traditional Students.
#2. TRIDENT UNIVERSITY
The Online Ph.D. in Business Administration at Trident University is offered completely online, allowing students to pursue their Ph.D. without needing to relocate or travel. During the program, students will become part of an online community of other passionate students. The program is designed to develop the teachers, researchers, and scholars of tomorrow, and outstanding faculty guides the students through coursework, exams, and their dissertation. Throughout the program, students will develop scholarly writing and presentation skills and will learn and practice scientific research methods, which they will use to pursue a research area of their own choosing as they learn to create academic research.
Trident University is located in Cypress, California, and offers a variety of programs that are completely accessible online. This gives students unique flexibility in pursuing an education even while meeting other work, family, or life commitments. The university was founded in 1998, and more than 27,000 military, veteran, and adult students have since graduated from the school. Veterans and active duty military members are eligible for reduced VA tuition. In 2015, Trident University earned an A+ rating from the Better Business Bureau.
#3. JOHNSON UNIVERSITY
Johnson University's Ph.D. in Leadership Studies is offered in a fully online format, making it ideal for working professionals or any students unable to regularly travel to the university. This program features an interdisciplinary design, and its focus on four leadership study dimensions – individual and personal systems, organizational systems, global systems, and research – helps to develop well-rounded scholarship. The program consists of 60 credits beyond the master's degree. Students are welcome to participate in research summits, which offer face-to-face interaction with faculty and other students, though these summits are optional. Students may choose from four concentrations: Educational leadership, organizational leadership, philosophy & theology of leadership, and missional leadership.
Johnson is located in Knoxville, Tennessee. It was originally founded as the School of Evangelists in 1893, then was renamed to Johnson Bible College, and then later became Johnson University. Johnson features eight different schools and awards over 50 bachelor's, master's, Ph.D., and associate's degrees. These programs are available on Johnson's East Tennessee and Central Florida campuses, while many others are available online. The university's online studies are attended by students around the world, and every program offered incorporates Johnson's Christian worldview.
#4. CAPELLA UNIVERSITY
The Doctor of Philosophy in Business Management degree at Capella University prepares students for careers as educators, consultants, and leaders. Students will master business concepts with a focus on business theory, research, and practice. Offered fully online, courses include topics such as business systems, financial management, accounting, economics, strategy, and social responsibility. The program is designed so that students begin work on their dissertation early on while being guided by faculty and their support team through the duration of the program. For students who want to maximize their course schedule, Capella caps the quarterly tuition for six or more credits at $5,000.
As of September of 2018, over 37,000 students were enrolled with Capella. Approximately 80 percent of those learners were receiving financial aid, and 88 percent of them were enrolled part-time. Capella is home to over 1,500 faculty members, and over 88 percent of those faculty members have doctorates. Capella accepts transferred credits depending on the degree program and previous institution. Additionally, many employers partner with Capella to offer tuition discounts to their employees.
#5. KANSAS STATE UNIVERSITY
Kansas State University's Ph.D. in Personal Financial Planning is a hybrid program that prepares students for careers as higher education faculty or financial planning practitioners. Students will take online courses in the fall and spring semesters, then participate in 10-day on-campus summer intensives. During their final summer intensive, students travel abroad as a group to study global markets in person and to observe how they affect financial planning worldwide. The 90-credit-hour program culminates in a dissertation. Students are prepared to hold a variety of positions, including registered financial associates, certified retirement counselors, registered financial consultants, and accredited financial counselors.
Located in Manhattan, Kansas, Kansas State University was founded in 1863 and has an enrollment of nearly 24,000 today. K-State offers over 250 undergraduate majors and programs, as well as over 159 graduate degrees and certificates. With more than 1,400 full-time faculty members, K-State awarded 179 doctoral degrees in 2015-2016. K-State is proud to be the home of the U.S. Department of Homeland Security's $1.25 billion National Bio and Agro-defense Facility. In 2017, the Wall Street Journal ranked K-State at No. 12 in America for improving students' critical thinking skills. The school is also frequently included in the top 10 of many prestigious Princeton Review rankings.
#6. UNIVERSITY OF THE CUMBERLANDS
The Online Ph.D. in Leadership at the University of the Cumberlands is a 66-credit online program that prepares students to hold a variety of leadership roles. Potential careers for program graduates include business analyst, management consultant, business professor, college administrator, dean, and research department manager roles. Previous students have defended dissertations on a wide range of topics, including: An Examination of Inclusion in a Rural, Public Middle School in Tennessee; and High School Course-Taking Patterns and Achievement in Mathematics.
The University of the Cumberlands has campuses in both Williamsburg and Florence, Kentucky and has provided scholars with a quality educational experience over the last 125 years. Understanding the complications that adult learners face, the university has created online programs with excellent scheduling flexibility that students can complete at their own pace. Currently, the university offers over 20 graduate programs. Accelerated eight-week bi-terms mean that students can attain their degrees in as little time as possible, with many degrees being able to be completed in just ten months.
#7. INDIANA WESLEYAN UNIVERSITY
Indiana Wesleyan University's Ph.D. in Organizational Leadership is offered as an online or hybrid program consisting of both online coursework and onsite classes in Indiana. Students enter the program as cohorts, which offers them a supportive learning environment. For students taking the program as a hybrid format, onsite class sessions occur once in the January, April, and September terms. Additionally, students attend a one-week July summer intensive. Each term also includes two synchronous virtual class sessions. Students taking the online format program will attend 3 synchronous sessions each term and will attend the one-week on-campus summer institute. Students may complete their degree in just 40 months.
Indiana Wesleyan University was established as Marion College in 1920. Today, IWU is a regional university located in Marion, Indiana. It is home to 3,000 traditional four-year undergraduate students. IWU also has 14 regional Education Centers throughout Indiana, Kentucky, and Ohio. These Education Centers offer the university's adult and graduate programs and are equipped with state-of-the-art classrooms, libraries, study rooms, conference rooms, and computer labs. IWU provides most graduate and adult programs online, making education accessible to students worldwide.
#8. CAPITOL TECHNOLOGY UNIVERSITY
The Doctorate of Philosophy in Business Analytics and Decision Sciences offered by Capitol Technology University is designed to prepare students to hold senior positions in public or private sectors. The majority of the classes are offered online, and its low-residency design gives students the flexibility they need to both attend school and meet their professional commitments. This program consists of 54 to 66 credits, and students can choose several electives to tailor the coursework to their personal areas of interest. The program focuses on topics such as professional research and theory, professional ethics and leadership, literature review, and more. Students will learn from faculty who are working professionals in the field.
Capitol Technology University is located in Laurel, Maryland, close to both Baltimore and Washington, D.C. This private non-profit university takes a unique approach to education and provides programs that integrate scientific theory with hands-on experience. Capitol students range in age from 16 to 61, and 80 percent of the university's full-time students receive some form of financial age. Capitol offers an impressive 12:1 student-to-faculty ratio and hires faculty who are experts in their field.
#9. EASTERN UNIVERSITY
Eastern University's Ph.D. in Organizational Leadership is offered mostly online with three on-campus residencies in St. Davids, Pennsylvania each year. Students may choose from concentrations in Business Management, Educational Administration, or Nonprofit and Public Administration. The program is designed with a cohort structure, where cohorts of approximately 20 students progress through the entire program together to create long-lasting learning communities. During the program, students complete three years of course work and a dissertation phase. It is possible for students to complete the program in four years, though they can take up to ten years to complete the degree if needed.
In 1925, Eastern University was founded as the Eastern Baptist Theological Seminary. In 1972, the school's name was changed to Eastern University: a Baptist Institution. Today, Eastern University is accredited by the Middle States Commission on Higher Education and offers a variety of undergraduate, graduate, and online programs. The U.S. News & World Report included Eastern University in its 2018 rankings of the Best Regional Universities in the North. Additionally, Money Magazine included Eastern University in its Best Colleges 2017-18 ranking. Christian Universities Online listed Eastern University as the fifth Most Beautiful Christian College and University Campus in the World.
#10. HAMPTON UNIVERSITY
Hampton University's Ph.D. in Business Administration program is a 61-credit-hour program designed for professionals who hold an advanced degree in business. This program prepares students to hold consultant or professor positions, as well as for leadership roles in administrative positions. In addition to the online classes, students are expected to finish two summer residencies. The four-week residencies occur at the Hampton University main campus during mid-July through mid-August during the first and second years of the program. The program culminates with a dissertation, and students must complete the dissertation within three years of beginning the first dissertation seminar.
Hampton University is located in Hampton, Virginia, and offers many different technical, liberal arts, and graduate degrees. The university was founded in 1868 and has an enrollment of over 4,300 today. Hampton University Online provides many of the university's undergraduate, graduate, and professional development programs to students who couldn't otherwise access a Hampton University education. Affordable Colleges Online has recognized Hampton University Online as a Best Online College in Virginia.