Program Requirements for an Online Bachelor's in Entrepreneurship
To graduate with a bachelor's degree in entrepreneurship, students typically need to earn a total of 120 credit hours. Major courses and electives are designed to help students hone their analytical and decision-making skills while learning about business operations and information systems. Most students need at least four years of full-time study — possibly more for part-time students — to complete the requirements for this degree.
It's possible to earn an entrepreneurship degree on campus or online, and the admissions requirements for both options are typically the same. Along with the application form, high school transcripts, and a possible fee, applicants may be asked to provide the following:
- Official scores on standardized tests
- Letters of recommendation
- An essay or personal statement
- A list of extracurricular activities
- Work experience
- A minimum GPA, such as 2.5 or higher
Common Courses for Entrepreneurship Degrees
The curriculum for an online degree in entrepreneurship is designed to provide students with a solid foundation in business principles. Coursework and projects help students build their skills in analytical and strategic thinking, collaboration, and communication. A few online programs require an internship or a capstone project that enables students to gain real-world experience. This online program often includes general education classes and the following entrepreneurship courses.
This introductory course is designed to provide a broad overview of business topics that concern entrepreneurs. Students may learn how to recognize promising business opportunities, develop a viable business plan, and obtain financing, such as loans and venture capital investments. Course materials may also address business law and ethics.
Sometimes split into two semesters, this course introduces students to the basics of financial and managerial accounting. In addition to learning general accounting practices, students discover how to assess the data contained in financial documents and use their conclusions to make sound business decisions.
In an entrepreneurial business organization, the owner is frequently responsible for managing an organization's finances. This course teaches the fundamentals of effective financial management by explaining budgeting, financial reports, cash flow, resource allocation, and other vital financial issues.
Future small business owners can benefit from understanding how people interact in groups within a work environment. Students may learn how key concepts in organizational behavior can be used to help grow an organization, improve employee performance, enhance team interactions, and inspire innovation.
From planning and organizing to staffing and controlling, this course is designed to explore the core functions of management. Projects help students build critical thinking and decision-making skills, and coursework covers management theories, leadership, ethics, and social responsibility.
An understanding of the four fundamentals of marketing — product, price, promotion, and distribution — helps students think strategically about selling their products and services. Coursework may also include coverage of market research, which is an essential tool for identifying and appealing to an organization's ideal customers.
Students whose career goals involve creating their own business ventures and running start-ups have several educational paths they can follow. One possibility is to earn a bachelor's degree in business management — or a related bachelor of science or arts degree — with an entrepreneurship concentration. Many schools also offer an online Bachelor of Business Administration (BBA) with entrepreneurship-specific electives added to the business core.
Another possibility is to pursue an entrepreneurship bachelor's degree that students can customize to fit their needs by choosing relevant electives. For example, students can create their own specialization in entrepreneurial business strategy by taking online courses in strategic analysis and business growth strategies. Similarly students could create a specialization in online business operations by opting for courses in e-commerce and digital marketing.
While any educational path in this field can potentially provide learners with the business management knowledge and problem-solving skills they'll need to run a successful business, a more focused degree covers various types of entrepreneurship in more depth, such as small business and non-profit organization management.
Accreditation for Online Entrepreneurship Degrees
Many colleges and universities establish their standing in the higher education community by undergoing accreditation. In this process, an independent agency analyzes a school's academic programs, faculty members, facilities, and other services to confirm they meet high standards for rigor and excellence. Schools can also seek accreditation for individual degree programs.
Accreditation is an important factor for students to consider when deciding which school they want to attend for an online entrepreneurship degree. Enrollment in an accredited program is required to qualify individuals for federal financial aid. Students may also need to have studied at an accredited online college or university in order to transfer credits to another school or be accepted into a master's program, such as an MBA program. The U.S. Department of Education and the Council for Higher Education Accreditation both provide databases of accredited schools.
Funding an Online Entrepreneurship Degree
Whether studying on campus or online, all students enrolled in accredited programs in entrepreneurship have equal access to financial aid. Prospective students can apply for many types of financial assistance by submitting the Free Application for Federal Student Aid. There are also some privately funded scholarships available that are listed below.
This $5,000 annual scholarship is available to any student who demonstrates an entrepreneurial spirit in their academic and community activities.
Business and entrepreneurship majors with a 3.5 or higher GPA are eligible for this $1,500 scholarship.
To encourage female leadership in business, one $2,000 award is given annually to a female college student majoring in business and entrepreneurship.
Applicants attending an accredited U.S. college must be small business owners and at least 25% Asian and/or Pacific Islander to qualify for these $1,000-$5,000 scholarships.