A Doctorate in Business Administration is the highest degree one can earn in the field. After receiving a Master's degree — typically in business — students may return to school to earn their DBA in pursuit of more competitive and high-paying careers, such as chief executives, financial officers, or operations managers.
While those who earn their DBA may go onto find teaching opportunities at the college level, it's recommended that those with their site on education to pursue a Ph.D. rather than the DBA. However, DBA programs are more popular because an advanced degree increases one's salary, and allows one to develop tactile, real-world knowledge to put into praxis.
FINDING A PH.D. IN MARKETING
The following programs ranked for the Top 5 Most Affordable Online Doctorates in Marketing are Doctorate of Business Administration degrees, which all offer an explicit specialization in Marketing, and courses dedicated to the ins-and-outs of the field in accompaniment to a holistic Business Administration curriculum. Online DBA programs are conveniently abundant, as many prospective students are already working business professionals; DBA's are not necessary to begin working at entry-level in the field, but instead increases one's credentials and provides the foundation for promotion and career growth. With that in mind, the university's have designed their online DBA programs with flexibility and accessibility. Students should expect to participate in online course sessions where most of the work is completed.
However, as it is a doctoral program, most online DBA programs require an on-campus residency. Exceptions are made for dissertation and field experience work completed off-site and still approved by the school's department to fulfill requirements. The residency may consist of examinations or important in-person work with professors and cohort on the selected dissertation. While the DBA is not a Ph.D. program, there is still an emphasis on the importance of advanced research and some theory of Business, and so dissertations may take the form of research projects.
RANKING THE 5 TOP AFFORDABLE ONLINE PH.D.'s IN MARKETING
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. TRIDENT UNIVERSITY
Trident University's Online Doctor of Business Administration program offers students a holistic and in-depth understanding of finance, management, technology, and marketing, all concerning the analysis of business problems and concepts. Prospective students are expected to have earned a relevant master's degree building upon curriculum offered by the DBA. The degree is earned entirely online and through an asynchronous format, combining advanced coursework and instruction with the application of research skills. Graduates are prepared to make evidence-based decisions and are competent in aspects of the field necessary to solve problems and catalyze organizational growth and prosperity.
The core curriculum of the 36-to-48 credit program is made up of courses in Advanced Strategic Marketing, Case Study and Action Research, Innovation and Creativity in Business, and more. All students complete four courses dedicated to a doctoral study made up of a proposed course and three supervised sessions of the study. Some may also opt to take an independent study course. The study project is a joint project with an organization of the student's choosing, where research is conducted and analyzed through innovative and critical thinking. Upon graduation, this study project, in combination with the advanced curriculum, will have prepared students for sought-after careers in consultancy and at the executive level. Graduates are prepared with a competitive capacity for business problem analysis.
#2. LIBERTY UNIVERSITY
Liberty University awards a 60-credit Doctor of Business Administration in Marketing that's completable in approximately three years. Liberty's DBA is offered entirely online and with optional on-site intensives for local students. The DBA in Marketing is focused on market research, advertising, promotions, and consumer behavior best practices. Prospective students are expected to have an accredited MBA earned with at least a 3.0 GPA and are typically already practicing in the field. The DBA in Marketing equips students with competitive skills and further understanding of all aspects of Business and Marketing, making them candidates for the highest-level job opportunities in their field. As Liberty is a proud Christian university, faculty members are not only professionally experienced but teach and present through a biblical lens.
The core courses in the program make up 48 of the 60 credits, with topics like Quantitative/Qualitative Research Methods, Human Resource Development, Quality Management & Productivity, and more. The 12-credit Marketing Cognate has its own core curriculum completed in accompaniment to the DBA core. All students complete a dissertation in the form of a doctoral research project. This project readies students to enter the professional field having completed an empirically-based, sophisticated, and currently relevant study that proves their understanding of contemporary business problems.
#3. GRAND CANYON UNIVERSITY
Grand Canyon University offers a Doctor of Business Administration with an emphasis in Marketing. The 60-credit degree is earned online and consists of a core curriculum dedicated to aspects of the business field and its relation to economics, analysis, statistics, and digital technology. The online program is designed with working professionals in mind and ensures convenience and flexibility in allowing students to study any time and anywhere. Faculty members are not only educated in the teaching of these subjects but also have strong professional experience in the field themselves. Applicants to the program typically have experience as business leaders both in the profit and nonprofit industries. They're also expected to hold a master's degree in business or a related field, so long as they have relevant business experience.
The core curriculum of the DBA is accompanied by specialized courses dedicated to Marketing. These courses are on Marketing Management; The History and Philosophy of Marketing; The Complexity of Marketing, Consumer Behaviors in Global Marketing, and more. After completing the core course load, students go onto developing a research proposal. From there, a dissertation takes up most of the student's obligation in the program. The dissertation consists of a research proposal specific to the student's focus. That research is then analyzed and established using a reporting mechanism that presents the research in a professional and encompassing way.
#4. GEORGE FOX UNIVERSITY
George Fox University's Doctor of Business Administration degree is designed for business professionals who are looking to transition into teaching at the university-level or up their career growth and credentials. A majority of coursework is completed entirely online, accompanied by on-campus residencies twice each year in Newberg, OR. During these residencies, students establish a professional community in meeting with their cohort and among professors. Since GFU designed its online DBA for working professionals, flexibility is an important aspect shown throughout the curriculum, and students can finish the degree at a full or part-time pace. Upon graduation, students may go into careers as professors, operations offers, area managers, technology offers, or many types of consultants.
The 56-credit program takes approximately four years to complete, which includes one full year dedicated to dissertation work. Within the core curriculum, students may select a concentration in Marketing, Accounting, or Management. The dissertation brings to fruition student's newfound knowledge and understanding of research methods in their dissertation research and presentation. Applicants must have earned full-time faculty appointment or have five years of professional experience. They must also have completed a Bachelor's and Master's degree with at least a 3.0 GPA. The major of the undergraduate and graduate degrees are not required to be in Business, although students should have completed coursework in Accounting, Economics, and Finance.
#5. KEISER UNIVERSITY
Keiser University's Doctor of Business Administration degree is for experienced business professionals who are in pursuit of increasing their credentials and career opportunities or are looking to enter the field of academia. The curriculum equips graduates with a thorough understanding of business and management theories and the ability to apply them in practice using evidence-based research and thinking skills. Students have the option of specializing in Marketing, Global Business, or Global Management. The program is offered entirely online, consisting of seven core courses, nine credit hours in research, 18 credits in the chosen specialization, and 18 credit hours for the dissertation.
DBA core courses will include The Global Economic, Financial Theory and Policy, Marketing Management, and more. The Marketing specialization focuses in on issues in the field, the history and current aspects of global marketing, consumer behavior, strategic service, and marketing models and theory. All students are required to complete two residences, one their first year for orientation and one when taking the comprehensive exam before graduation. The exam is completed before starting one's dissertation. Applicants must have a Master's degree in Business Administration, Management, Public or Nonprofit Management, or other related fields.