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What are the best online master’s degree programmes?

Admin | June 20, 2022

An online degree is an online programme where a student receives a degree conferred by an educational institution upon fulfilling all the requirements to clear the programme. The exclusive classes are held online via the internet.

After a student completes his undergraduate degree, they can either work for a company to gain experience or pursue a master’s degree. A master’s degree is an educational qualification that recognised institutions confer after the student demonstrates a high level of knowledge in a particular subject of choice. A student can choose between an online and on-campus master’s degree in present times. There are both pros and cons to online learning, which will be discussed in further sections. A master’s degree is very beneficial for many, especially those looking to change their domain or intending to pursue a Ph.D. Here are some benefits of completing a master’s degree: 

  1. A master’s degree holder earns considerably more than a college undergraduate. 
  2. While applying for a job position, a master’s degree makes you stand out from undergraduate candidates.
  3. If you want to pursue a PhD thesis, institutions admit candidates with a master’s degree.
  4. A master’s degree can make you eligible for leadership roles or senior positions in a company.
  5. You can broaden your network during a master’s course by connecting with domain experts and recruiters.

Overview of online master’s degree programmes

With the advancement of faster internet technologies & modern integrated communications systems and the recent outbreak of the coronavirus pandemic, there is an ever-increasing rate of students applying for online master’s degrees. University Grants Commission (UGC) has entitled several universities to offer online courses. The online master’s degree is valued equally as the on-campus master’s degree. Most master’s degrees take from one to three years for completion. The exact duration depends on the choice of subject for a master’s degree and the country where the institution is registered. 

Regular vs online master’s degrees

There are a lot of differences and similarities between regular on-campus master’s degrees and online master’s degrees. We have listed down some of them for you: 

  1. One of the major differences between online and on-campus degree programmes is the type of communication involved. In the online master’s programme, the students take their lessons online via the internet. If they have to attend live lectures, they use software applications like Zoom. While the regular students who enrolled in an on-campus programme interact with their faculty in person.
  2. Regular attendance is a must for all students enrolled in on-campus degree programmes, and customised scheduling of classes is not possible. In comparison, most online master’s degree programmes are asynchronous, and online students can attend the lectures according to their convenience.
  3. The tuition fee of an online master’s degree programme is considerably less expensive compared to an on-campus course. However, both offer scholarships and permit semester-wise payment of tuition fees.
  4. An online master’s programme is highly flexible in terms of schedule. You have the opportunity to take up a full-time/part-time job to earn while you are studying. A regular programme may not be able to give the same flexibility. 
  5. Students who prefer hands-on experience to learn the theory behind it should enrol in on-campus master’s degree programmes. In contrast, students who prefer to study using tutorial videos and written material could do well with online degree programmes.
FactorsOnline Master’s DegreeOn-campus Master’s Degree
Type of CommunicationVirtual interaction over the internetPersonal Interaction in real time
Schedule flexibilityAsynchronous, highly flexibleMandatory attendance, not flexible
Fee structureLowerHigher
Earn as you studyPossible Not possible since most of your time is spent attending classes and fulfilling tasks for course completion
Learning styleOnline classes, recorded video tutorials and reading materials In person teaching on campuses

Many students believe that online master’s degree courses are less difficult or are lower in quality than on-campus degree courses. However, it’s not true at all. To get recognition by the University Grants Commission (UGC) and accreditation by organisations like NAAC, AICTE etc., the institutions have to maintain high standards of academic excellence. You should always check for recognition and accreditations before applying to an online master’s course.

Regardless of the choice of online or offline master’s course, the access to resources and opportunities are the same (wherever possible). Students from both modes have access to placement services, alumni databases, etc.

What are the best online master’s degree programmes in India?

Following are some of the best master’s degree courses in India:

  1. Master of Business Administration (MBA) – It refers to the theoretical and practical training in the field of business administration. There are some specialisations within an online MBA that you can pursue, e.g., Supply Chain Management, Finance, Accounting, Marketing, etc. Some of the UGC recognised institutions which offer MBA degrees are  Manipal University Jaipur (MUJ), Amity University, Jain University, etc. The average starting salary for an MBA graduate in India is about INR 8.3 lakhs per annum. Since you study entrepreneurship during your MBA programme, it is considered to be the best master’s degree for starting your own business. Some career prospect after MBA are Project Manager, Supply Chain Manager, Finance Manager, Marketing Manager, HR Manager, etc. MBA graduates are in high demand in almost every business domain. Some well-known companies that hire MBA graduates are Google, Dell, American Express, Bank of America, and others.
  2. Master of Business Administration (MBA) in Supply Chain Management – This course teaches the concepts of logistics, economics and finance. Supply Chain Management covers the processes that convert raw materials into finished products. Some of the UGC recognised institutions which offer MBAs in Supply Chain Management are the University of Mysore, Narsee Monjee Institute of Management Studies (NMIMS), Jain University, etc. The average starting salary for an MBA in supply chain management in India is about INR 7 lakhs per annum. Some job profiles that might interest an MBA graduate in Supply Chain Management are Supply Chain Manager, Logistics Manager, and Performance Analyst. Some prominent companies that hire MBAs in supply chain management are Flipkart, Amazon, BigBasket, and others.
  3. Master of Computer Applications (MCA) – This course offers high-level learning in the field of computer applications development. After completing the course, you will be proficient in modern computer programming languages. A few UGC entitled universities that offer online MCA degrees are  Manipal University Jaipur (MUJ), SRM Institute of Sciences and Technology, Jain University, etc. The average starting salary for an MCA graduate in India is about INR 8.8 lakhs per annum. After completing an MCA course, you could look into some job profiles like an application developer, ethical hacker, technical writer, web developer, and others. Some prominent companies that hire MCA graduates are HP, Accenture, Deloitte, KPMG, etc.
  4. Master of Commerce (M.Com) – It is a postgraduate course in the commerce field. Master of Commerce (M.Com) is popular amongst the students who finished their undergraduate course in Bachelor of Commerce (B.Com). This course involves learning subjects like Finance, Banking, Accounting, Insurance, and more. Some of the UGC recognised institutions which offer MBA degrees are  Manipal University Jaipur (MUJ), Lovely Professional University (LPU), Chandigarh University, etc. The average starting salary for an M.Com graduate in India is about INR 3.91 lakhs per annum. Some job roles that graduates of M.Com prefer are Accountant, Auditor, Risk Analyst, Trader, Investment Banker, and others. Some well-known companies like ICICI Bank, LIC, Bank of America, HDFC Bank, etc., hire M.Com graduates.
  5. Master of Arts (MA) in Journalism and Mass Communication – This specialised course teaches how to present essential pieces of information to a large audience via various means of communication. A few UGC entitled institutions that provide this course are Manipal University Jaipur (MUJ), Alagappa University, and Chandigarh University. A few of the job roles that you can apply for after completing an MA in Journalism and Mass Communication are Journalists, Copywriter, Editor, Content Manager, and others. The average starting salary for an MA in Journalism and Mass Communication graduate in India is about INR 4.4 lakhs per annum. A few prominent companies that hire MA graduates are The Telegraph, Hindustan Times, Zee News, Republic News, etc.
  6. Master of Science (M.Sc) in Data Science – This course delves deep into scientific methods and systems used to extract information from various types of data. This is one of the best master’s degrees after engineering in undergraduate studies. Some of the institutions that offer this course are Manipal Academy of Higher Education (MAHE) and Chandigarh University. After completing an M.Sc in Data Science, some job roles that you can apply for are Data Scientist, Data Engineer, Data Analyst, Data Consultant, etc. The average starting salary for an M.Sc. in Data Science graduate in India is about INR 7.8 lakhs per annum. Some prominent companies that hire MSc in Data Science graduates are Deloitte, Accenture, Google, Microsoft, etc.
  7. Master of Science (MSc) in Business Analytics – This course teaches the use of various tools and techniques to make sense of complex datasets and improve business performance. This is one of the top ten master’s degrees in India. Some of the UGC recognised universities that offer this course are Manipal University Jaipur (MUJ), Manipal Academy of Higher Education (MAHE), and Birla Institute of Technology and Science (BITS) Pilani, etc. A few of the job profiles that you can apply for after completing an M.Sc in Business Analytics are Business Analyst, Data Analyst, Operations Analyst, and Product Analyst. The average starting salary for an M.Sc. in Business Analytics graduate in India is about INR 10 lakhs per annum. Some well-known companies like Accenture, KPMG, Microsoft, Meta, etc., hire M.Sc in Business Analytics graduates.

YOU MAY ALSO LIKE: List of accredited online degree programmes

S. No.Course NameName of the institutions offering the courseAverage salary after successful completion*Top recruiters
1Master of Business Administration (MBA)Manipal University Jaipur (MUJ), Amity University, Jain University, etc INR 8.3 lakhs per annumGoogle, Dell, American Express, Bank of America, etc
2Master of Computer Applications (MCA)Manipal University Jaipur (MUJ), SRM Institute of Sciences and Technology, Jain University, etc INR 8.8 lakhs per annumHP, Accenture, Deloitte, KPMG, etc
3Master of Commerce (M.Com)Manipal University Jaipur (MUJ), Lovely Professional University (LPU), Chandigarh University, etc INR 3.91 lakhs per annumICICI Bank, LIC, HDFC Bank, Bank of America, etc
4Master of Arts (MA) in Journalism and Mass CommunicationManipal University Jaipur (MUJ), Alagappa University, Chandigarh University, etc INR 4.48 lakhs per annumThe Telegraph, Hindustan Times, Zee News, Republic News, etc
5Master of Science (M.Sc.) in Data ScienceManipal Academy of Higher Education (MAHE), Chandigarh University, etc INR 7.8 lakhs per annumDeloitte, Google, Accenture, Microsoft, etc
6Master of Science (M.Sc.) in Business AnalyticsManipal Academy of Higher Education (MAHE), BITS Pilani, etc INR 10 lakhs per annumAccenture, KPMG, Microsoft, Meta
*Source: Payscale.com

The above given salary is the base average salary collated by Payscale.com. The salary package changes based on the role you receive and the company/ industry you join.

Is it worth pursuing an online master’s degree?

Following are some pointers that prove the worth of an online master’s degree.

  • The online master’s degrees provided by most institutions (e.g., Manipal University Jaipur) are recognised by the University Grants Commission (UGC), proving the institution’s and the programme’s authenticity.
  • Ensure that the online master’s course you apply for is accredited by organisations like NAAC, AICTE, ICAS, ICES, WES, etc. These accreditations mean that the courses fulfil the high standards of the organisations that have, in turn, approved the course.
  • The online’s masters degrees which are recognised by UGC, are widely accepted by government organisations and corporate entities during recruitment.
  • Given the significantly lower fees of online master’s courses compared to regular on-campus courses, it can be said that the return on investment is higher in the case of online master’s courses.

Read more – Online degree vs distance degree

How to apply for an online master’s degree programme?

Following are some simple steps with which you can apply for an online master’s degree programme:

  • First, you need to select the choice of the master’s course that you want to pursue.
  • Then figure out which institutions offer the master’s course of your choice. Try to understand all the advantages and disadvantages of pursuing a master’s degree at multiple universities to make a better choice. 
  • Now, select the institution that offers the master’s degree of your choice and fulfils other criteria like flexibility in time, budget, choice of elective subjects, etc. Also, make sure that you are eligible for the course at the university of your choice.
  • Next, fill in the registration form for the institution of your choice. If you face difficulty with the online registration form, you can contact them via the ‘Contact us’ section of the institution’s website.
  • Submit all the necessary and relevant documents required by the institution’s admissions office.
  • Pay the registration fee for the online master’s degree.
  • The institution will then confirm your admission via email or SMS and send you further details on payment of fees, the orientation of the programme, etc.

Manipal University Jaipur (MUJ) offers assistance for the entire admissions process via phone or email.

Enrol in a master’s degree at Online Manipal

Online Manipal hosts UGC-entitled online degree programmes from Manipal University Jaipur (MUJ) and Manipal Academy of Higher Education (MAHE).

MUJ is a UGC recognised institution with NAAC A+, WES, ICES, AICTE, IQAS and ICAS accreditation. In OUTLOOK-ICARE INDIA UNIVERSITY RANKING 2020, MUJ ranked 9th in the Top 50 Private State Universities. MUJ offers online master’s courses on Masters of Business Administration (MBA), Master of Computer Applications (MCA), Master of Commerce, and Master of Arts in Journalism & Mass Communication. Depending on the course, the fees for the online courses at MUJ range from INR 1,00,000 to INR 1,50,000.

The Institute of Eminence status holding university, MAHE, is currently offering a Masters in Science in Data Science and Business Analytics. The prestigious university is graded A++ in NAAC accreditation. The course fee for these career game-changing programmes is INR 2,60,000. 

Online Manipal has the option of semester wise payment of fees for its students. Online Manipal also offers scholarship discounts ranging from 10% to 20% of the tuition fees to students who belong to categories like people with disability, defence personnel, etc. Furthermore, Online Manipal offers free access to Coursera to its students. Corporate offices and government organisations widely recognise the online master’s degrees offered by MUJ and MAHE. Recruiters from more than 100 Fortune 500 companies have collaborated with MUJ and MAHE for placement services.

Conclusion

Online learning is gaining recognition and popularity in modern times. Many UGC recognised institutions offer online master’s degrees with multiple accreditations. An online master’s degree is valued as important as an on-campus master’s degree. It takes one to three years to complete a master’s degree programme, depending on the choice of subject and institution. Online Manipal offers a host of online master’s degree programmes in a broad range of subjects like MBA, MCA, M.Sc., M.Com and others. It is one of the top master’s degree providers in India that promotes its students’ skill building by offering free access to Coursera.

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