As businesses and organizations become faster and increasingly more complex, it’s more difficult than ever to produce efficient, quality results. For every $1 billion an organization invests, a $100 million is wasted due to poor project performance. According to Gallup Business Journal, only 2.5% of companies successfully complete all their projects, and the average cost overrun of all projects is 27%. Nearly 60% of projects fail because of poor communications; 40% fail because of bad planning, resources, and activities.
No wonder project managers are among the most important, highly sought-after professionals across nearly all sectors. But to get a a job in project management, you’ll have to have the right training first. Below, we’ve ranked the thirty best online master’s in project management, which combine the same rigorous standards of on-campus degrees with the flexibility and affordability of online education.
What Do Project Managers Do?
Project managers have one main responsibility: get the job done. Of course, linked to that one responsibility are dozens of other tasks, major and minor, and not every role is identical. A project manager in healthcare informatics has different responsibilities than a project manager in construction, but the big picture is the same: stay on time, stay on budget.
Successful project managers balance an array of managerial skills to lead a project from inception to completion. An in-exhaustive list of responsibilities may look something like this:
- Manage individual projects from initiation to conclusion that meet stakeholder requirements, achieve project objectives, and realize strategic goals
- Plan and set the scope, schedule, and budget of individual projects
- Assemble, lead, and manage a team with diverse skill sets and strengths
- Understand team dynamics, e-leadership, virtual teams, and multiculturalism
- Use business intelligence and leverage data for decision-making
- Use critical thinking and creative problem solving to make
quick, effective decisions
- Effectively communicate within the team and across organizations to set expectations, monitor project progress, meet quality standards, and achieve goals
- Record, track, and archive all documentation on each project
- Lead all risk management initiatives, including identifying potential risks as early as possible
- Evaluate the social change impact on factors that contribute to sustainability in project management
- Implement professional business ethics throughout the project
Will A Master’s in Project Management Help Advance My Career?
According to the Project Management Institute, the industry’s leading professional organization, only sixty-one percent of companies report offering any on-the-job training for project manager tools and techniques. At the same time, thirty-two percent of those surveyed consider both technical and leadership skills a high priority. In other words, skilled labor is in high demand and short supply.
A master’s in project management offers several benefits.
- First, master’s holders stand out on the job market: companies need employees with verifiable PM skill sets and credentials, and a master’s acts as a trusted proof of concept.
- Second, the master’s track is the most advanced, in-depth professional degree for project managers, including core competency training and experiential capstone opportunities. Many programs also include a concentration or specialization option to help you tailor the degree toward your profession.
- Most important, the master’s in project management is the most comprehensive training available for the PMP exam, which is the industry’s highest certification for project managers. Complete extensive hands-on training, and if possible, enroll at a PMI-accredited school or Registered Education Provider (REP) that follows the Project Management Body of Knowledge standardized curriculum.
One additional note worth mentioning: Beyond hard skill training, a master’s in project management helps develop equally important soft skills in critical thinking, organizational leadership, decision making, and other managerial skills. (In that way, it’s similar to a more traditional MBA.) While some PM skills can and must be learned from experience, it’s clear that on-the-job training continues to lag, and the master’s in project management offers a potential solution.
How Much Can I Earn With a Master’s in Project Management?
In a 2015 study, PMI found that the average salary for master’s degree holders in the United States is $113,000 compared to a median salary of $105,000 for project managers with a bachelor’s degree from a four-year college or university. Both are higher than the median annual wage for management occupations overall ($100,790).
Further, with hiring continuing to increase, salaries are expected to rise. From 2010-2020, PMI predicts an estimated 15.7 million new project management roles worldwide, with the majority in the US, Australia, Brazil, Canada, China, Germany, India, Japan, Saudi Arabia, United Arab Emirates, and the United Kingdom. In total, the industry is expected grow by $6.6 trillion, and the biggest sectors will include manufacturing, business services, finance and insurance, oil and gas, information services, construction, and utilities. In general, management occupations are projected to grow 8 percent through 2026.
What’s The Curriculum of a Master’s in Project Management
Not every program will follow the same curriculum, but there are a few common core requirements, and the aforementioned PEMBOK Guide offers the most-trusted standard. Regardless, when researching master’s programs, consider the following questions. Does the degree incorporate capstones to help gain real-world experience and build a portfolio? Are there concentration, specialization, or other customization capabilities? Are there multiple PM-focused courses, as well as management fundamentals, interdisciplinary classes, and other relevant material? Finally, review the program’s flexibility, including accelerated options and self-paced course work.
- Practices in Project Management
- Project Scheduling
- Budgeting and Operations Management
- Enterprise and Project Risk Management
- Stakeholder Management and Organizational Behavior
- Business Process Management and Systems
- Sustainability in Project Management
- Project Contracts
- Organizational Leadership
- Agile Project Management
- Construction Management
- Fraud Management
- Healthcare Administration
- Information Technology
- Operations Planning and Control
- Project Leadership and Management
- Supply Chain Management
- Project Risk Assessment and Control
Granite State College
|PMD Score: 89/100|
Founded in 1972, Granite State College has a total enrollment of about 2,100, offering associate’s, bachelor’s, and master’s degrees. With a 13:1 student-to-faculty ratio, GSC’s small, intimate classes combine collaborative learning with student-centered instruction to serve working professionals, adult learners, and non-traditional students. Over eighty percent of classes have fewer than 20 students, and none have over 49. For those interested in financial aid opportunities, GSC has an excellent track record.
Granite State offers an online MS in Project Management that consists of 30 credits and can be completed in as little as 12 months. Course highlights include Project Management Seminar, Project Planning and Scheduling, Cost and Budget Management, Leading Teams, Project Quality Management, and Managing Project Portfolios. As a practice-oriented program, GSC emphasizes critical managerial skills, and graduates will be prepared to complete all necessary project management tasks. In addition, the master’s is designed for maximum flexibility, and hybrid and blended delivery options are available. The degree is accredited by the Project Management Institute.
|PMD Score: 89/100|
Founded in 1916, Avila University is a private Catholic institution in Kansas City, Missouri, with a total enrollment of 1,800. Ranked among the best schools in the Midwest by US News, the university emphasizes lifelong learning and practical professional training. The 12:1 student-to-faculty ratio supports a tight-knit educational community, including small class sizes, individualized instruction, and collaborative learning opportunities.
Avila offers an online MA in Management with an emphasis in Project Management (24 credits with PMP certification). The Management curriculum features classes in Statistics & Assessment, Financial Decision Making for Managers, Leadership & Influence, and Strategic Communication. From there, students complete PM courses in Practice of Project Management, Tools & Technology of Project Management, Application of Project Management, and Management Technology or Six Sigma. All courses are designed for maximum flexibility, delivering in accelerated 8-week course blocks to accommodate working professionals and adult learners. Graduates of the program commonly pursue careers in a range of fields, from government and non-profit organizations to healthcare and business. Avila is a Registered Education Provider for the Project Management Institute.
Florida Institute of Technology
|PMD Score: 89/100|
Founded in 1958, Florida Institute of Technology is a private university with 6,500 students, half of which are enrolled in graduate programs and include students from all 50 states and over 100 countries. US News, Forbes, Wall Street Journal, and Washington Monthly all rank FIT among the best schools in the country; PayScale, the Brookings Institution, and Barron’s highlight FIT’s return-on-investment potential. With an approach called “High Tech with a Human Touch,” FIT emphasizes professional development and personalized instruction. The student-to-faculty ratio is 13:1, and nearly half of classes have under 20 students.
Florida Institute of Technology offers an online master’s in Project Management that includes 30 credits. The degree is built for maximum flexibility to fit the schedules of a wide variety of working professionals in the private, public, and military sectors. In addition to core competencies in project management, including statistics and economic analysis, students will also complete a concentration (options include operations research and information systems). All students also have the opportunity to gain valuable hands-on experience through a capstone project in the final year of the program. The degree is accredited by the Project Management Institute.
Colorado State University – Global Campus
|PMD Score: 88/100|
Founded in 2007, Colorado State University’s Global Campus has a total enrollment of about 12,000 students. US News ranks CSU among the top colleges in the country on its rankings for value and high school counselor ratings, and Bloomberg BusinessWeek, Forbes, Princeton Review, Washington Monthly, and Consumers Digest rank the university highly, too. With an 18:1 student-to-faculty ratio, CoSU Global balances a vibrant, collaborative atmosphere with personalized instruction to support a tight-knit learning community; over a third of classes have fewer than 20 students and less than 20% have 50.
CSU’s online master’s degree in Project Management consists of 39 credits, which deliver in accelerated 8-week blocks. Core requirements include Operations Management, Business Analyses, Project Management Office, Effective Organizations, and Project Metrics, Monitoring, and Control. From there, students take two capstone modules to develop real-world experience and can tailor their degree to areas of professional interest with one of a dozen potential specializations: Business Intelligence, Fraud Management, Healthcare Administration, International Management, Organizational Learning and Performance, and Strategic Innovation and Change Management, among others. All instructors are experts in the field, and course scheduling is flexible to accommodate working professionals. The degree is accredited by the Project Management Institute.
|PMD Score: 88/100|
Specializing in online education since 1993, Capella University has 40,000 students enrolled from 50 states and 61 countries around the world. Most Capella students attend courses on a part-time basis, and all programs are designed to accommodate a wide variety of students, from adult learners to working professionals. Emphasizing real-world skill-building, Capella equips students with applicable, market-based needs, and all faculty keep close connections to industry leaders to keep curricula ahead of the curve.
Capella offers an online master’s in Information Technology with a specialization in Project Management. Core course requirements include Information Technology and System Trends, Security and Enterprise Networks, Emerging Technologies, and Database and Application Development. Specialization courses include Project Risk Assessment and Control, Project Leadership and Management, Agile Project Management Theory and Practice, and Project Budgeting, Procurement, and Quality. For maximum flexibility, the degree is self-paced, and Capella’s generous transfer policy allows up to 12 credits to be waived. Enrollment counseling, financial aid counseling, academic coaches, and career services are also available. The degree is accredited by the Project Management Institute.
|PMD Score: 88/100|
Lasell College, founded in 1851, has an enrollment of about 2,100. US News places Lasell among the best schools in the North region, and the Chronicle of Higher Education has ranked it as one of the 10 fastest-growing colleges in the country. With a special focus on experiential and immersive learning, nearly all students complete an internship, and 90% earn a service-based learning credit. (The university holds a Carnegie Classification for Community Engagement.) Lasell’s 13:1 student-to-faculty ratio supports a tight-knit learning community, individualized instruction, collaborative learning, and small classes (70% with fewer than 20 students).
Lasell offers an online MS in Management with a specialization in Project Management. The 36-credit curriculum features a wide variety of classes: 21st Century Global Leadership, Strategic Information Management, Financial Management, Organizational Theory, and Operations Strategy make up the core, and Principles of Project Management, Business Strategy, and Change Management round out the concentration. Finally, to incorporate a real-world component into the track, students complete a research capstone project and internship toward the end of the program. All courses are 100% online for maximum flexibility, and accelerated 8-week course blocks or traditional 16-week blocks are available. Graduates have gone on to career roles like Agile Project Manager, Operations Manager, Team Leader, and Operations and Startup Manager. The degree is accredited by the Project Management Institute.
|PMD Score: 87/100|
Established in 1898, Northeastern University is a private research university with a total enrollment of about 25,000. The university has been ranked among the best in the nation by the Princeton Review, Forbes, and Bloomberg Businessweek. US News ranks it among the best schools in the country, as well as one of the best values. All programs are designed to be dynamic, interdisciplinary, and entrepreneurial, with an emphasis on real-world skills, and the university offers extensive study abroad opportunities across the world, including Scotland, South Africa, France, England, New Zealand, Australia, Japan, Greece, and Antartica, among other countries.
Northeastern’s online MS in Project Management consists of 36 credits. Designed for working professionals, all course work is highly flexible, and students can complete the degree in as little as 18 months on a full-time basis (part-time enrollment is available, as well). Core requirements include Project Management Practices, Project Scope Management, Project Scheduling and Cost Planning, and Project Quality Management. From there, students can customize the curriculum through a variety of interesting managerial elective options: Personal and Career Development, Integrative Experiential Learning, Group Dynamics and Interpersonal Conflict, and Negotiation, Mediation, and Facilitation, among others. The program is accredited by the Project Management Institute’s Global Accreditation Center.
Saint Mary’s University of Minnesota
|PMD Score: 87/100|
Founded in 1912, Saint Mary’s University of Minnesota is a private Catholic institution with an enrollment of 5,600 students, the majority of whom are in graduate programs. In addition to a top-50 regional ranking, Saint Mary’s is recognized as one of the best schools in the Midwest for overall value and veteran services. The 20:1 student-to-faculty ratio helps to combine a vibrant, collaborative setting with tailored instruction and small class sizes, over seventy percent of which have under 20 students.
Saint Mary’s offers an online master’s in Project Management that features 36 credits and can be completed in as little as 24 months. In particular, the curriculum, which aligns with the PMI Guide’s Project Management Body of Knowledge, prepares students for the Project Management Professional (PMP) exam to become a certified PMP. Courses include Planning and Estimating, Technical Communication, Product Integration and Quality, Project Risk Management, Quantitative Methods, and Managerial Ethics and Issues. The program is designed with working professionals in mind, and flexible delivery options can be tailored to fit individual students’ needs. Common career tracks of SMUM grads include Information Security Analyst, Project Director, Supply Chain Manager, and International Project Manager. The degree is accredited by the Project Management Institute.
|PMD Score: 87/100|
Founded in 1971, Liberty University is a private Christian school located in Lynchburg, Virginia with 100,000 online students. As a global leader in distance education, all 250 of Liberty’s online programs are designed to accommodate working professionals, adult learners, and non-traditional students, with affordable tuition and hybrid, intensive, and blended delivery options for flexibility. For transfer students, Liberty’s generous policy allows students to waive credits through previous academic course work, work/life experience, MOOC certifications, prior-learning examinations, military service, and/or portfolio work. Finally, Liberty’s low student-to-faculty ratio fosters an intimate learning community, with a third of classes consisting of fewer than 20 students.
Liberty’s online MS in Project Management consists of 36 hours: Leading Organizational Change, Supply Chain Management, Operations Management, Global Project Management, Leading Project Teams, Project Evaluation & Assessment, Quality Management, and Advanced Project Management, among other courses. Up to half of the required credits can be transferred into the degree, and 100% of the courses are online. For those interested, similar programs are available in Business Administration and Executive Leadership. Potential career paths include Administrative Services Manager, Project Scheduler, Operations Manager, and Senior Project Manager.
University of Wisconsin – Platteville
|PMD Score: 87/100|
The University of Wisconsin-Platteville is a public 4-year institution located in Platteville, Wisconsin. There are 8,779 students enrolled and the student-to-faculty ratio is 22:1. The Higher Learning Commission accredits UW-Platteville to award associate’s, bachelor’s, and master’s degrees. According to U.S. News & World Report, UW-Platteville is ranked 99th in the region, 26th for best public school, and 114th for best online graduate business programs. UW-Platteville offers a broad range of degrees in disciplines that include science, business, criminal justice, and the liberal arts. They offer the full gambit of student support services that include remedial services, placement services for graduates as well as academic and career counseling services. UW-Platteville recently expanded their online offerings providing seven fully online degrees including a master’s in criminal justice, a master’s in engineering, and a master’s in organizational leadership. For an affordable and supportive online program, you can’t go wrong with UW-Platteville.
UW-Platteville offers a Master of Science in Project Management. We selected this online master’s degree for its affordable tuition rate. The curriculum is mapped out according to the PMBOK® guide and will help you prepare for your certification in project management. You can choose how this degree will fit your personal and professional goals through their extensive elective options in human resource management, business ethics, project risk management, and others. Some of the exciting course offerings include employee training and development; management, gender and race; managerial accounting; applied statistic; business analytics; supply chain management; and corporate finance. All students culminate their degree with a capstone experience. For an affordable master’s in project management, try UW-Plattville.
|PMD Score: 87/100|
Bellevue University, founded in 1966, is a private Christian school that specializes in flexible, affordable online education for working professionals, adult learners, and non-traditional students. The university’s dynamic learning platform features a range of educational tools, including 24/7 access to course materials, group discussion boards, live chat rooms, tech support, and video conferencing. In addition, Bellevue offers several flexible delivery models – flex paths, MOOCs, course clusters, and accelerated cohorts – and the 11:1 student-to-faculty ratio fosters small a tight-learning community and individualized instruction.
Bellevue offers an online master’s in Project Management that requires 36 credits that cover the PMBOK Guide outlines: Managing Project Risks, Project Communications Management and Leadership, Project Management in Global and Virtual Workplaces, Organizational Structures and Practices, Cost Control in Projects, and Agile Project Management, among others. All courses deliver in 12-week blocks and are designed for maximum flexibility to fit the schedules of working professionals and adult learners. In particular, Bellevue emphasizes a hands-on, practical approach to develop students’ skill sets, balancing theory and practice. The degree is accredited by the Project Management Institute.
|PMD Score: 87/100|
Brandeis University, founded in 1948, is a private institution with a total enrollment of about 5,700, including a significant graduate student population. Routinely placed among the best universities in the country, Brandeis ranks highly on lists by Princeton Review, Kiplinger’s, Washington Monthly, Forbes, Financial Times, and numerous other publications. US News ranks Brandeis in the top 30 value schools nationally. With a 10:1 student-to-faculty ratio, Brandeis fosters a tight-knit educational atmosphere, with collaborative learning opportunities and tailored instruction from expert faculty. Over sixty percent of classes have fewer than 20 students.
Brandeis offers an online MS in Project and Program Management designed for maximum flexibility to suit working professionals, adult learners, and non-traditional students. The 30-credit curriculum delivers in accelerated 10-week blocks, and core requirements include Foundations of Project Management, Professional Communications, Project Scheduling and Control, Risk Management in Projects and Programs, Negotiating and Conflict Resolution, and The Human Side of Project Leadership. From there, students have the opportunity to tailor the program to areas of professional interest through a range of elective options, such as Procurement and Contract Management, Agile Project Management, Data Science and Analytics, and Management of Virtual and Global Teams. There are four entry dates available per year. It is accredited by the Project Management Institute.
University of Mary
|PMD Score: 87/100|
Founded in 1959, University of Mary is a private Catholic institution in Bismarck, North Dakota with a total enrollment of about 3,300. In addition to an endorsement by The Newman Guide to Choosing a Catholic College, US News ranks the university among the best in the Midwest region. The school’s 15:1 student-to-faculty supports a combination of rigorous, collaborative education and intimate instruction. Nearly seventy percent of classes have fewer than 20 students and less than 5 percent have 50.
University of Mary offers an online Master of Project Management that consists of 30 credits and can be completed in as little as 18 months. Required core courses include Management and Organizational Behavior, Ethics, Marketing, Statistics & Research, Operations Management, Project Execution and Control, and Project Planning, among others. From there, students can customize the curriculum through concentrations in areas like Energy Management, Healthcare, Public Administration, and Virtuous Leadership. Upon completion of the degree, graduates will be prepared to: evaluate the contemporary global business
COLLEGE OF ST. SCHOLASTICA
|PMD Score: 87/100|
College of St. Scholastica, founded in 1912, is a private Catholic institution with a total enrollment of 4,400, evenly divided between undergraduates and graduate students. US News ranks CSS among the best universities in the Midwest and highlights it for value and veteran services. (Forbes, Money Magazine, and other publications recognize graduates’ general return-on-investment.) In addition to a student-centered education, CSS emphasizes professional and real-world skills development; ninety-seven percent of St. Scholastica graduates are employed or enrolled in a graduate program within six months of graduation.
St. Scholastica offers an online MS in Project Management that consists of 37 credits and is a Registered Education Provider of Project Management Institute. Foundational courses include Leadership Communications, Project Management Essentials, and Strategic Decision Making. From there, the advanced core includes Procurement and Budget Management, Project Risk and Quality Management, and Emerging Topics in Project Management, and the specialization module includes Organizational Change Leadership, Global and Cultural Competency, Leading Global and Distributed Teams. With accelerated 8-week course blocks, the degree can be completed in under 2 years, and scheduling is highly flexible to accommodate working professionals. The degree is accredited by the Project Management Institute Global Accreditation Center.
Western Carolina University
|PMD Score: 87/100|
Founded in 1898, Western Carolina University is a public institution with a total enrollment of about 10,800. Ranked among the best universities in the country by Princeton Review and Kiplinger’s, US News places WCU on its best lists for public schools, Southern schools, and colleges for veterans. The 17:1 student-to-faculty ratio supports a vibrant, collaborative atmosphere, combining tailored instruction and intimate classes. A quarter of classes have fewer than 20 students
Western Carolina offers an online master’s in Project Management that requires 30 credits: Fundamentals of Project Management, Project Selection and Initiation, Project Planning, Project Plan and Implementation, Project Execution and Closeout, and Advanced Project Management Practices. As the first degree of its kind at a nationally accredited university, WCU’s program was also the first to be accredited by the Project Management Institute. All courses are built to fit the needs of working professionals and deliver in 12-week blocks. Applicants should have at least 2-3 years of prior work experience, but GMAT/GRE scores are optional.
Pennsylvania State University
|PMD Score: 87/100|
Penn State World Campus, launched in 1990, has a total enrollment of 13,500, with students from all 50 states, over 60 countries, and 7 continents. A global leader in distance education, Penn State offers 120 online undergraduate and graduate degrees, plus professional certificate programs. The 13:1 student-to-faculty ratio fosters small, intimate classes, personalized instruction, and a tight-knit educational community. Further, PSU grads have access to a alumni network of over 650,000, and according to a survey by the Wall Street Journal, PSU graduates are ranked #1 by recruiters for professional preparedness.
Penn State offers a 30-credit online Master of Project Management that follows the Project Management Body of Knowledge and the European APM. Core requirements include Project Management, Cost and Value Management, Planning and Resource Management, Commercial Law and Project Procurement, Interpersonal and Group Behavior, Management of Projects, and Strategy: Corporate, Business, and Project. Students then have the opportunity to customize the curriculum to areas of professional interest through a variety of specialized elective options like Enterprise Modeling, Engineering Product Innovation, Operations Planning and Control, and Purchasing and Materials Management. For those interested in a shorter track, PSU also offers a 12-credit Graduate Certificate in Project Management, as well as several related master’s degrees and certificates. The program is accredited by the PMI and AACSB.
|PMD Score: 87/100|
Georgetown University, founded in 1789, is one of the oldest and most prestigious schools in the country. The university appears on lists by Forbes, Washington Monthly, and The Fiske Guide to Colleges; and US News ranks it 20th in the US, with additional high marks for value and veteran services. With a total enrollment of 18,500, the school maintains an excellent 11:1 student-to-faculty ratio to promote a tight-knit educational community, including individualized instruction, collaborative learning, and intimate classes. Over sixty percent of classes have under 20 students and less than ten percent have 50.
Georgetown offers an online Master of Professional Studies in Project Management that prepares students to plan, manage, and execute complex projects. The 30-credit curriculum delivers in 12-week course blocks and includes studies in Project Initiation & Development, Communication & Collaboration for Managers, Project Planning, Project Execution & Delivery, and Ethics. A series of electives are available to tailor the degree to areas of professional interest, and full-time and part-time enrollment is available to fit the scheduling needs of working professionals, adult learners, and non-traditional students. Three entry dates are available throughout the year, and students can complete the program in as little as two years. Certificate and executive master programs are available, as well.
Embry-Riddle Aeronautical University
|PMD Score: 86/100|
Founded in 1926, Embry-Riddle Aeronautical University is a private institution and the largest and oldest aviation-focused university in the world. Forbes includes Embry-Riddle on its list of “America’s Top Colleges,” and US News ranks it among the top 15 colleges and universities in the South; additional rankings include 7th for veteran services, 6th for innovation, and 40th for overall value. With a total enrollment of 6,000, the school boasts a 16:1 student-to-faculty, which helps support a vibrant, dynamic atmosphere and tailored instruction. A quarter of classes have fewer than 20 students and less than three percent have 50.
Embry-Riddle offers an online MS in Project Management that includes 30 credits. Core requirements are Effective Communications for Managing Projects; Anatomy of Project Organizations; Assessing and Managing Project Risk; Leading Projects Across Cultural, Corporate, and International Boundaries; and Planning, Directing, and Controlling Projects, among others. To add a customizable component to the curriculum, students also have the opportunity to specialize in a variety of unique areas: Aviation and Aerospace, Management, Leadership, Logistics and Supply Chain Management, Financial Management, Systems Engineering, Information Systems, Global Management
Sam Houston State University
|PMD Score: 86/100|
Founded in 1879, Sam Houston State University is the third oldest public university in Texas. Located in Huntsville, about an hour north of Houston, SHU has a student enrollment of 20,500 and offers over 80 undergraduate, 54 master’s, and 6 doctoral programs, as well as 21 professional certificates. Sam Houston was the first university in Texas to be classified as an R1 Research University by the Carnegie Foundation, and has been recognized by Forbes, Washington Monthly, and US News for academic excellence. With a 23:1 student-to-faculty ratio, SHSU promotes a vibrant, collaborative learning environment. A quarter of classes have less than 20 students.
Sam Houston State offers an online MS in Project Management that requires 36 credit hours: Seminar Operations Management, Tools of Project Management, Operations Planning & Control, Staffing Organizations, Quality Management, Seminar In Team Leadership, Management of Innovation & Technology, and more. In particular, Sam Houston’s program is aimed at professionals in the managerial space who want training in introducing products and services in a rapidly evolving environment. Students will also prepare to take the PMI exam for certification. Support services include access to an academic success center, student advising, library access, and more. The degree can be completed in as little as two years.
|PMD Score: 85/100|
Founded in 1869, Purdue University has a total enrollment of 40,500, making it the second-largest school in Indiana. (It also has the fourth largest international student population in the country). The Princeton Review has ranked Purdue’s alumni network of 450,000 11th in the country, and the Wall Street Journal ranks Purdue 4th for preparing students for the workforce. US News places it among the top fifty US universities, with additional high marks for earning potential, value, and veteran services. The 12:1 student-to-faculty is exceptional for a schools of its size, combining the resources of a large research university with the personalized instruction of a smaller liberal arts school. Forty percent of classes have fewer than 20 students, and less than twenty percent have 50.
Purdue offers an online MS in IT Project Management that follows the PMBOK Guide. Consisting of 34 credits, students on an accelerated track can complete the degree in as little as 11 months (part-time students have up to 5 years). Sample course subjects include IT policy, law & ethics; IT economics & procurement management; program & portfolio management; organizational & project change management; and project estimating, scheduling & control. The degree is designed for maximum flexibility, and multiple delivery options are available to accommodate working professionals (specifically, IT roles like Systems Analysis & Design Engineer, Software Team ManagerLead Systems Engineer, Computer Engineer, etc.). Admissions are rolling.
New England College
|PMD Score: 85/100|
New England College, founded in 1946, is a private liberal arts school in Henniker, New Hampshire, with an enrollment of of 2,600 (1,000 undergraduate, 1,000 graduate, 600 online). NEC’s 19:1 student-to-faculty ratio fosters an intimate, tight-knit learning community, and eighty percent of classes consist of less than 20 students. (Less than one percent have 50.) All NEC programs emphasize experiential learning to develop hands-on insights and training. US News ranks NEC among the best schools in the region, and has been listed on Time‘s “Colleges That Have Diversified the Most.”
New England College offers an online MS in Project Management that consists of 36 credits. Core requirements include Organizational Management and Leadership, Research Methods, Strategic Planning and Policy, Professional and Organizational Ethics, and a Strategic Capstone. The PM concentration features studies in Managerial Accounting and Finance for Leadership, Economics for Leadership, Supply Chain Management, Quality Analysis for Technology, and Contract Management. With accelerated 7-week course blocks, students can complete the track in under 2 years while continuing their careers and pursuing PMI certification.
Southern New Hampshire University
|PMD Score: 85/100|
Founded in 1932, Southern New Hampshire University is a global leader in distance education, with over 70,000 online students and 200 programs. US News ranks SNHU 1st in the nation for innovation, and Fast Company, The Chronicle of Higher Education, and New Hampshire Business Review have all highlighted the university’s dynamic education model. The 15:1 student-to-faculty ratio promotes a collaborative learning experience, including individualized teaching and faculty with years of online teaching experience. Over sixty percent of classes contain less than 20 students.
Southern New Hampshire offers an online MS in Project Management that requires 36 credits and can be completed in as little as 15 months, with two courses per 10-week term. Core requirements include Operations Management, Project Management, and a capstone course to provide a comprehensive overview. From there, students can tailor the curriculum to areas of professional interest through a range of unique PM electives, such as Human Behavior in Organizations, Applied Statistics for Managers, Six Sigma, International Supply Chain Management, and Project Management for PMP Certification. SNHU is a Registered Education Provider of the Project Management Institute, and is accredited by both NEASC and ACBSP.
University of Southern California
|PMD Score: 85/100|
Founded in 1880, USC is a private research institution with a total enrollment of 44,000, the majority of which consists of graduate students. Forbes, USA Today, The Princeton Review, and Academic Ranking of World Universities rank it among the best schools in the country. U.S. News places USC in the top 25 nationally, with additional high marks for overall value, veteran services, and innovation. Considering its size, the 8:1 student-to-faculty ratio is top-notch, balancing the resources of a large research university with the intimate classes of a liberal arts school. Sixty percent of classes have fewer than 20 students.
Southern California’s online MS in Project Management totals 30 credits, including courses in Schedule Management, Cost Estimation and Forecasting, Risk Management, Agile Project Management Methodologies, Quality and Process Improvement, Program Management, Portfolio Management, and Organizational Change Management and Business Relationships. In particular, USC’s program emphasizes project management strategy in a global context, with additional attention paid to ethical and principled leadership, and social responsibility. For maximum flexibility, there are three entry dates per year, and the degree can be completed on an accelerated one-year schedule or traditional two-year track. A related MS in Human Resource Management is also available, for those interested.
|PMD Score: 85/100|
Regis University, founded in 1877, is a private Catholic university in Denver, Colorado, with a total enrollment of 11,500. As a member of the Association of Jesuit Colleges and Universities, Regis is ranked as one of the top 30 universities in the region by US News, with high grades for veteran support and overall value, as well. Community service is a major point of emphasis, led by Regis’s Institute on the Common Good and Center for Service Learning, which integrates service and volunteering opportunities into undergraduate and graduate programs. The 15:1 student-to-faculty ratio encourages collaborative learning while maintaining individualized teaching. Sixty percent of classes have under 20 students.
Regis has an online MS in Project Leadership and Management that totals 30 credits. Required courses include Delivering Organization Excellence, Leading Projects in Contemporary Organizations, Management of Project Performance, Project Monitoring and Delivery, Leading Change and Innovation, and Strategic & Business Management. All students complete a capstone in Leading Responsible Organizations to demonstrate proficiency in PM skills. Specifically, graduates will be prepared to: practice effective business communication with project stakeholders; implement strategic alignment; leverage business intelligence to drive decisions; and monitor risk management. Courses deliver in accelerated 8-week blocks, and there are three entry dates available per year. Regis is a Registered Education Provider of the Project Management Institute and holds PMI accreditation.
|PMD Score: 85/100|
Founded in 1970, Walden University has a total enrollment of over 47,000, including students from all 50 states and over 150 countries. The university also features one of the original fully online learning campuses, offering 140 degree programs – including bachelor’s, master’s, certificates, and doctorate degrees – with than 300 specializations and concentrations. With a 18:1 student-to-faculty ratio, Walden specializes in tailored instruction, professional development, and career-oriented education. For adult learners and working professionals, Walden has a number of affiliations with school districts, healthcare centers, corporations, and nonprofits, helping to reduce tuition costs and emphasize career-oriented curricula.
Walden’s online MS in Project Management consists of 30 credits, which follow the PMBOK Guide to ensure the most rigorous, up-to-date curriculum plan. Core requirements include Project Scheduling, Budgeting and Management of Operations, Enterprise and Project Risk Management, Managing People and Promoting Collaboration, Business Process Management and Systems, Stakeholder Management and Organizational Behavior, and Sustainability in Project, Portfolio, and Program Management, among other studies. Courses deliver in accelerated 8-week blocks, and Walden allows up to 15 credits to be transferred into the program. Further, graduates of the program may be able to apply credits toward Walden’s Doctor of Business Administration, and several related certificate programs are available as well. The degree is accredited by the PMI.
|PMD Score: 84/100|
Drexel University, founded in 1891, is a private school in Philadelphia with a total enrollment of about 22,000, including 8,000 graduate students. US News ranks Drexel among the best colleges in the nation for academics, overall value, veteran services, and innovation in education; its online programs are included in six US News rankings. With a 10:1 student-to-faculty ratio, Drexel supports a student-centered learning experience, with individualized instruction and collaborative opportunities. Sixty percent of classes have less than 20 students and fewer than 10 percent have 50.
Drexel offers an online master’s degree in Project Management that’s designed for mid-career professionals. The curriculum features 30 credits, delivered in accelerated 10-week blocks, including courses in Project Planning & Scheduling, Project Quality Management, Project Estimation & Cost Management, Managing Multiple Projects, Project Procurement Management, Project Leadership & Teamwork, and Project Management Tools. From there, students have 12 credits of free electives to customize the degree toward their area of professional interest. If you’re interested in a quicker track, a PM graduate certificate is available, and Drexel offers a range of graduate minors, as well. The curriculum follows the PMBOK Guide and is accredited by the PMI.
Stevens Institute of Technology
|PMD Score: 84/100|
Founded in 1870, Stevens Institute of Technology has a total enrollment of 6,300, evenly divided between undergraduate and graduate students. US News ranks SIT among the top 75 national universities, and high school counselors place it among the top 85. SIT specializes in entrepreneurship and innovation, and the university has well-known co-op and STEM research programs. The 9:1 student-to-faculty ratio fosters an intimate educational community, combining collaborative learning with tailored instruction. Forty percent of classes have fewer than 20 students and only 9 percent have 50.
Stevens Institute of Technology offers a 30-credit online master’s degree in Enterprise Project Management that combines multiple disciplines to help give students the necessary training needed to direct projects, budgets, and timelines across businesses. Core requirements include Project Analytics, Leader Development, Project Management Office, and Leading Across Projects. To add a customizable aspect to the program, students also have the opportunity to concentrate in either General Management, Software Engineering, or Construction Management. Stevens Institute is a Registered Education Provider with the Project Management Institute and offers a PM graduate certificate, for those interested. The master’s track can be completed in as little as two years.
University of Maryland, University College
|PMD Score: 84/100|
Founded in 1947, The University of Maryland – University College, is located in Adelphi, with satellite campuses in 142 locations in over 20 countries. UMUC is also a leader in online education, with an enrollment of over 90,000 students worldwide and 90 online degrees across a diverse range of disciplines. All UMUC courses are designed to accommodate adult-learners, including flexible delivery and career-oriented programs, and more than ninety percent of the student body is employed full-time. The 22:1 student-to-faculty ratio encourages a vibrant, collaborative environment while maintaining an individualized learning experience. Sixty-five percent of classes have fewer than 20 students.
UMUC offers an online Management Master’s with a Project Management Specialization that totals 36 credits. Core courses include Organizational Theory and Behavior, Financial Decision Making for Managers, and Statistics for Managerial Decision Making. From there, specialization courses include Quantitative Methods in Project Management, Project Risk Management, Project Communications Management, Project Procurement Management, and Financial and Strategic Management of Projects. Faculty are experienced world-class leaders and have worked at such organizations as Bell Labs, IBM, Verizon, U.S. Department of Defense, MetLife, Westinghouse, and the U.S. Air Force. Course work is designed to fit the schedules of working professionals and adult learners, and the 12-week course blocks feature 100% online and hybrid delivery options.
University of Denver
|PMD Score: 84/100|
The University of Denver, founded in 1864, is the oldest private college in the Mountain West, with a student enrollment of about 11,800. Forbes, Washington Monthly, and US News rank UD among the best universities in the country, with the latter highlighting its veteran services and overall value. The 11:1 student-to-faculty ratio is exceptional for a university of its size and keeps learning intimate, personal, and tailored to individual needs. Over half of classes have fewer than 20 students and just five percent have 50.
University of Denver’s online master’s in Project Management is a 12-course, 48-credit curriculum plan that follows the PMBOK Guide. Core courses are Leadership Development, Building the 21st Century Organization, Principles of Financing for Organizations, Graduate Social Research Methods, and integrated capstone options. Concentration courses include Project Contracts & Procurement and Project Management Dynamics, and electives allow students to customize the degree toward their professional interest or background. Built to accommodate a range of students and schedules, classes deliver in accelerated 10-week blocks, and multiple entry dates are available per year. The degree is regionally accredited by the NCA.
|PMD Score: 84/100|
Founded in 1893, American University is a private institution in Washington, D.C., with a total enrollment of about 13,400, evenly divided between undergraduate and graduate students. Widely considered one of the best universities in the country, Forbes, Washington Monthly, Fiske Guide to Colleges, and Princeton Review all include AU on “Best Of” lists. US News includes it in rankings for national universities, best value schools, best schools for veterans, and on the high school counselor rankings. The 12:1 student-to-faculty ratio promotes a student-centered, collaborative environment, including individualized instruction and intimate classes, over half of which have under 20 students.
One of the few of its kind available, American offers an online MS in Agile Project Management that consists of 30 credits and can be completed in as little as 20 months. Courses include Adaptive Project Management Principles, Agile Solutions and Risk Management, Project Cost-Benefit Analysis, Agile Project Management Capstone, Data-Driven Decision Making, Teams and Virtual Teams, and Client Communications & Professional Consulting. Students then choose an elective to customize the curriculum to professional interests. In particular, graduates will be prepared to: develop a project management life cycles; assess and create strategic planning; leverage advanced tools for project cost estimation and control, task scheduling, tracking, and other tasks; and demonstrate effective leadership, communication, and change skills. A 12-credit online Graduate Certificate in Agile Project Management is available, as well.