Here’s How You Can Do a MBA Online for Free [Part 1]

Doing an MBA is expensive. Scholarships for business programs are rare so you have to forego earnings (unless it’s an executive MBA program), set aside time and even then it’s possible you might not land your dream job because some companies don’t recruit grads from your school.

There’s also an entirely different set of people who want to do an MBA. They might be regular employees or businessmen or entrepreneurs who don’t have the time for a full time degree but still want the business knowledge.

Thankfully, online education makes it possible to get a world class MBA education through just a computer and an internet connection. Please keep in mind that for most of the resources listed, there’s no degree awarded and it’s purely about the knowledge.

Most of these courses can be done at your own pace; for some others, you might have to follow a schedule. These closely follow the core curriculum in most MBA programs.

Without further ado, here is how you can do an online MBA for free.

The Wharton MBA Core

While we don’t like how Coursera has gutted the content of these courses over the years, they still provide incredible value. While the videos are free, access to graded material is behind a paywall. If you look around, you can find assignments from previous cycles of the courses when they were freely available to everyone.

Introduction to Marketing

This course runs for 5 weeks. On average you will need to allocate about four to six hours per week to study for it. It’s taught by three of the top faculty at Wharton’s Marketing department. In it, you will learn three core things: Branding, Customer Centricity and Go-To Market strategies.

The next session starts on November 28. Sign up here.

Introduction to Financial Accounting

This course runs for 4 weeks and expect to spend five to six hours per week studying for it. At the conclusion of the course, you’ll be well equipped to read and deal with the three staples of accounting which are the income statement, balance sheet and statement of cash flow.

The next session starts on November 28. Sign up here.

Introduction to Operations Management

This course runs for 4 weeks. On average you will need to allocate about four to six hours per week to study for it. This course will teach you everything you need to know about operations to improve manufacturing or services. Concepts taught include process analysis, bottlenecks, flows rates, and inventory levels among others.

There’s a session that started on November 7 so you can still join it. Sign up here.

Introduction to Corporate Finance

This course runs for 4 weeks and will need a time commitment of about four to seven hours per week. It’s a brief introduction to finance in business but covers all the basics like time value of money, risk-return tradeoff, cost of capital, interest rates, retirement savings, mortgage financing, auto leasing, capital budgeting, asset valuation, discounted cash flow (DCF) analysis, net present value, internal rate of return, hurdle rate, payback period.

There’s a session that started on November 7 so you can still join it. Sign up here.

Alternative: If you want a more quantitative and rigorous course on Corporate Finance, I recommend checking out the one by the incredible Professor Damodaran at New York University. Keep in mind that it’s a much more intense course than the one offered by Wharton. You’ll need at least 80 hours to get through it.

You can sign up for it here.

Inspiring Leadership through Emotional Intelligence

Running a business can be a stressful task. You have to maintain profits, think of growth, manage your staff and make sure everything runs smoothly. That’s why it’s helpful to understand how emotional intelligence can aid you and your employees deal with the challenges you’ll inevitably face.

This course is a short one and needs about 12 hours to be completed. The next session will start on the 5th of December. You can sign up here.

Foundations of Business Strategy

This course runs for 4 weeks. You will need to spend about five to six hours per week to study for it. You’ll learn the basics of strategy, analyzing competition and how you can position your firm to take advantage. Essentials like SWOT, Competitor, Environmental, Five Forces, and Capabilities Analyses, as well as Strategy Maps are taught in this course.

The next session starts on November 14. You can sign up here. You can sign up here.

These are course I’ve tried and liked. If you have any other recommendations, feel free to let me know in the comments below and I’ll test and add them to the list! The next part will deal with the quantitative courses in an MBA and advanced topics. 

Talal is the Editor in Chief at ProPakistani. Reach out at [email protected]