2023 Best Online Bachelor's in Supply Chain Management Programs
A bachelor's degree in supply chain management aims to equip students with the knowledge and skills needed to keep products moving through global transportation networks. Enrollees in this program complete courses on finance, sourcing, and strategy in supply chain logistics. Many of these programs are business administration degrees with specializations in supply chain management, which lets students get a general business education along with their logistics focus. Graduates might qualify for a range of business careers, including as logisticians, cost estimators, or operations research analysts.
Online Supply Chain Management Bachelor's Degrees You May Be Interested In
2023 Best Online Bachelor's in Supply Chain Management Programs
|Rank||School||Salary Score||Median Starting Salary|
|# 1||City University of Seattle||$79,719|
|# 2||Excelsior University||99||$62,731|
|# 3||Bellevue University||98||$60,272|
|# 4||University of Minnesota Online||98||$59,473|
|# 5||Embry-Riddle Aeronautical University - Worldwide||95||$56,141|
|# 6||University of Massachusetts Global||93||$54,565|
|# 7||National University||93||$54,361|
|# 8||Oregon Institute of Technology||92||$54,257|
|# 9||American Public University System||92||$54,183|
|# 10||Ball State University||90||$53,024|
2023 Online Colleges Offering Bachelor's Degrees
#1 City University of Seattle
City University of Seattle (CUS) is a private school offering two bachelor's degree options to supply chain students. The first is a Bachelor of Arts (BA) in Management degree with a specialization in global supply chain management. The second is a Bachelor of Science (BS) in Business Administration with a global supply chain management specialization. Both degrees contain 180 quarter credit hours, which can take about four years to complete.
GGU's online students complete coursework using the Brightspace learning management system. The BA curriculum is intended for students who want leadership roles in management, while the BS is geared toward general business students. Students in both programs take the same five-course sequence starting with Managing Global Operations and Value Chains.
#2 Excelsior University
Excelsior College is a private online institution featuring a Bachelor of Science in Business degree with a concentration in logistics management. This program contains 120 credit hours of courses, which often takes full-time students four years to complete. Excelsior has an open admissions policy and a 35% graduation rate for bachelor's students.
The college uses the Canvas platform to deliver online asynchronous online courses. BS students learn general business principles alongside supply chain topics such as lean logistics and inventory management. Some required courses for the concentration include Transportation, Warehousing, and Distribution and Quality Control. Graduates might find work in all areas of business, including as logisticians and production managers.
#3 Bellevue University
Bellevue University is a private school with three online bachelor's degrees for candidates interested in supply chains. The Bachelor of Science in Supply Chain, Transportation and Logistics Management covers on-the-ground logistical concerns for employer supply chains. Bellevue's Bachelor of Science in Supply Chain and Logistics Management emphasizes business strategy in the design of supply chains. Finally, the Bachelor of Science in International Business Administration offers a concentration in supply chain logistics for business students who want some grounding in logistics issues.
Each degree consists of 127 credit hours and tends to take four years with a full-time schedule. The basic curriculum differs by degree, but they each contain coursework on supply chain management systems, finance, and sourcing.
#4 University of Minnesota Online
The University of Minnesota Online (UMO) is a public university offering an online Bachelor of Manufacturing Management degree. This 120-credit program often takes four years to complete with a full-time course load. All branches of the University of Minnesota have acceptance rates in the 70-79% range and graduate rates of 55-80%.
Canvas is UMO's digital learning platform where online students can view assignments and lectures and complete coursework. This program's faculty teach up-to-date theories and practices for efficient manufacturing, such as lean principles and Six Sigma. Core required classes include Managerial Accounting, Applied Quality, and Applied Engineering Principles.
#5 Embry-Riddle Aeronautical University - Worldwide
Embry-Riddle Aeronautical University - Worldwide (ERAUW) is a private institution with a Bachelor of Science in Logistics and Supply Chain Management degree containing 120 credit hours of coursework. This BS program usually takes at least four years with a full-time course load. ERAUW has a 63% acceptance rate for bachelor's degree applicants, 36% of whom finish their degrees.
The university's online students use Canvas to complete coursework. This program's curriculum consists of a general business core and 21 credits on the logistics and supply chain focus. The required logistics courses include Principles of Procurement Management, Transportation Principles, and Advanced Professional Logistics.
Overview of an Online Bachelor's Degree in Supply Chain Management
A degree in supply chain management is designed to provide students with the practical knowledge and hands-on experience to efficiently manage the flow of goods from manufacturers to consumers. Supply chain management includes transportation, packaging, quality control, and investment recovery. Students can choose an area of focus, such as strategic sourcing or manufacturing supervision, to launch a career. Data from Burning Glass shows that 6,538 supply chain management degrees were awarded in 2020, which is up by 27.4% since 2016.
Students can enroll fully online for a bachelor's degree in supply chain management. As participation in distance education increases, there is some evidence indicating that employers are paying more attention to the value of online degrees while the stigma surrounding them is fading. A 2018 Center for the Future of Higher Education and Talent Strategy survey found that over 60% of human resources leaders believe online degrees are comparable to on-campus degrees. These online programs are designed to take full-time students four years to complete the required 120 credit hours, and it takes longer for those with part-time schedules.
Unsure about a degree in supply chain management? You can explore our list of additional online bachelor's programs.
Which Degree Type Is Best for You?
Students can earn either a bachelor's of arts or bachelor's of science in supply chain management. While B.A. degrees focus on the humanities and tend to be broader in scope, B.S. degrees emphasize STEM. The majority of supply chain management programs award B.S. degrees because they teach skills in predictive modeling, statistics, and information technology.
Curriculum for this program is designed to prepare students for managing the flow of consumer goods — from cars and building materials to food and medicine. The curriculum covers various components of supply chain management, such as inventory management, information systems, and supplier relations. If students are interested in pursuing a niche, completing electives may help them choose a concentration, such as government contracting or transportation and logistics. To graduate, students may need to complete a senior capstone project, internship, or a comprehensive management exam.
Courses are similar across various supply chain management degree programs, and typically include the following:
Fiscal Management focuses on applying accounting principles and processes to supply chain management. In addition, students discover the importance of managing business information systems as they apply to inventory control and finance.
Fundamentals of Contracting and Acquisition
Fundamentals of Contracting and Acquisition introduces students to federal acquisition practices, policies, and procedures. Faculty discuss contract planning, execution, and management, which may interest students embarking on public service careers.
Global Demand Management
Global Demand Management studies the demand for goods and services as well as how to prioritize demand based on supply availability. Students examine ways to balance supply and demand while appeasing both management and customer needs.
Principles of Procurement Management
Principles of Procurement Management develops students' understanding of the strategic impact of purchasing and supply chain management in terms of profitability and competition. Students also study the relationship between production, order fulfillment, billing, and revenue.
Transportation Principles explores the various principles and modes of transportation, including air, sea, rail, automobile, and pipeline. Instructors discuss the impact of each on the economy, environment, and future developmental prospects.
The Importance of an Accredited Online Supply Chain Management Degree
Accreditation is one of the most important factors when considering an online degree because it ensures that a school has consistently met quality education standards. In addition, accreditation is necessary for using federal financial aid. Most non-profit universities are regionally accredited. Regional accreditation is preferred over national accreditation because of its prestige and longevity. This level of accreditation also allows students to transfer college credits from one regionally accredited institution to another. Students can visit Ed.gov to check an online school's accreditation status.
ACBE and ACBSP ensure that a program's committed to continuous improvement and is designed to prepare students with the skills employers want. However, graduating from an accredited degree program is not required for certification or credentialing.
Programs can also be accredited to make sure that they not only meet rigorous academic standards but also industry standards. The International Assembly for Collegiate Business Education (ACBE) and Accreditation Council for Business Schools and Programs (ACBSP) evaluate supply chain management degree programs because many are part of business programs. ACBE and ACBSP ensure that a program's committed to continuous improvement and is designed to prepare students with the skills employers want. However, graduating from an accredited degree program is not required for certification or credentialing.
We've compiled an accreditation resource where you can find additional information
How Much Do Online Supply Chain Management Programs Cost?
Out of 24 top schools, the median annual tuition for supply management programs is $14,947. For online programs in general, tuition is $13,919 across 846 schools.
Online degrees can sometimes be less expensive than on-campus degrees because students don’t have to pay for housing or transportation. In addition, schools may waive on-campus fees for distance learners, and in-state tuition is usually available regardless of a student's location. Students should also consider ROI and if it justifies tuition costs.
To help pay for school, students should fill out a Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) to determine their federal financial aid eligibility. You may qualify for government scholarships, grants, work-study programs, or low-interest student loans. A school's financial aid office can also assist students in finding private scholarships and grants to help make college a reality. Additionally, students should consider ROI and the resulting benefits of a supply chain management degree program to determine whether the tuition costs are worth it in the long-run.
Careers in Supply Chain Management
A bachelor's degree is typically required to become a supply chain manager, who typically oversees every step of an item's production, including purchasing and transporting products and maintaining storage and inventory. The Association of Supply Chain Management and the International Society of Logistics offer programs that grant licenses and certificates in this field. Obtaining a license or certificate is not usually required, but it can increase marketability and prove competency. In addition, direct job experience is also helpful when looking for a job after graduation.
Supply chain management jobs can be fast-paced and demanding. Career Explorer reports that supply chain managers are in the bottom 18% of careers in the U.S. in terms of job satisfaction. This role can be stressful because managers often face emergencies with shipping, labor, and the integrity of products. However, this position may be an appropriate fit for an enterprising individual who possesses strong people skills and enjoys the challenges of a dynamic environment. It's a growing field with many career opportunities, such as those listed below:
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