Online MBA in Real Estate Programs


Housing is a basic necessity, and the real estate industry, even after slumps and the Great Recession, continues to flourish. Considering the vast number of opportunities that the industry offers, many universities are now offering dedicated MBA programs with a concentration in real estate.

While there are not too many online MBA in real estate programs, students can explore other options such as a master of science in real estate. Courses in both types of graduate programs are taught by seasoned real estate professionals, with a top-notch record in research. Students learn the fundamentals of urban planning, real estate valuation, and finance. Additionally, they gain an insight into sustainable development, finance & investment banking, design, deal structuring, and international real estate.

Since relationships are a vital aspect of a career in real estate, these programs also offer students the opportunity to build a community of national and local professionals. Students are encouraged to participate in conferences, learn from industry experts, and apply their knowledge with capstone projects.

An MBA with a real estate concentration can open up doors in the public and private sectors. From the development and sale of residential properties to managing large-scale investment portfolios, graduates have a vast range of careers to choose from. They can take up jobs in market analysis, real estate brokerage, property management, real estate investment consulting, and development.

This guide examines standout MBA in real estate programs offered online, including detailed profiles of three exceptional faculty members.

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Featured Online MBA in Real Estate Programs

Florida State University offers an online, part-time MBA with a specialization in real estate. As part of the program, students benefit from the school’s Center for Real Estate Education and Research. The organization holds several events such as the Real Estate Trends Conference and other research symposiums.

The MBA program is enriched by a wide variety of practical opportunities such as real estate internships and real estate licensing opportunities. Taught by faculty members well-known for their research, the program ranks among “Best Online MBA Programs” in 2021, according to U.S. News and World Report.

Admission requirements include submission of GMAT or GRE scores as well as proof of prior work experience. Comprising 39 credits, the program dedicates 27 to the core curriculum. It is designed to make students knowledgeable in business fundamentals such as financial reporting and managerial control, legal and ethical environment of business, marketing strategy, and business policy.

Students pursuing the real estate specialization need to take nine credits of elective courses. Courses include real estate valuation, real estate investment, and real estate finance. Students learn how to inspect a real estate valuation, mortgage instruments, market operations, and evaluate real estate investment opportunities. They develop competencies such as decision-making and analysis.

At the end of the program, graduates can pursue several opportunities in commercial real estate. They can take up roles such as real estate broker, real estate investor, and real estate consultant.

Location: Tallahassee, Florida
Accreditation: Association to Advance Collegiate Schools of Business (AACSB International)
Expected Time to Completion: 42 months
Estimated Tuition: Florida residents ($780.18 per credit); non-Florida residents ($810.24 per credit)

The University of Illinois at Chicago offers an online MBA program with real estate as one of its concentrations. This however is not a 100% online program. They can take classes at night or on Saturdays, while some online courses are also available. This practical degree is the perfect option for working professionals who wish to take their knowledge and skills to another level. Students are free to start the program in spring, summer, or fall. To get accepted, they are required to have at least two years of work experience.

The program is made up of 54 credits, divided into 26 credits of core curriculum and 28 credits of electives. The core courses take a deep dive into essential business concepts like financial accounting, corporate finance, microeconomics, marketing, organizational behavior, and operations management. The capstone project focuses on enterprise strategy.

The real estate concentration provides students with an understanding of urban planning and the economics and finance of real estate. It emphasizes urban real estate markets, using the city of Chicago as an example. Students study urban real estate and land economics, urban economics, investments, and real estate finance. The curriculum leans heavily on research and prepares students for a career in the burgeoning real estate industry.

On completion of the program, students have a strong grasp of the operation of real estate markets, methods of real estate finance, and systems for planning and regulating urban real estate. They can pursue myriad opportunities in the public or private sectors, doing real estate development.

Location: Chicago, Illinois
Accreditation: Association to Advance Collegiate Schools of Business (AACSB)
Expected Time to Completion: 18 months
Estimated Tuition: $4,600 per semester

The College of Business and Economics at Longwood University offers an online master of business administration program with a real estate track preparing students to be industry leaders, taking up management-level roles in real estate development, commercial and corporate real estate, and investment management and finance.

This 100% online program enables students to grow their careers while continuing to work. They will study real estate development and economics and gain expertise in financing and planning, market demand, and construction of development projects.

To get accepted into the program, applicants must have a bachelor’s degree from a regionally accredited college or university, a minimum grade point average of 3.0, GRE or GMAT scores (waivers available), official transcripts from all colleges or universities attended, a current resume, recommendations, and a personal essay, among other requirements.

The program comprises 31 credits, out of which 25 credits are of core MBA courses while the remaining are of electives. The core MBA courses build essential business competencies, while the real estate concentration gives students a complete overview of the industry.

Students are trained to tackle challenges in real estate, as they learn real estate economics and development, and real estate finance and investment. The courses have a strong emphasis on practical application that helps students in their future jobs.

Location: Farmville, Virginia
Accreditation: Association to Advance Collegiate Schools of Business (AACSB)
Expected Time to Completion: 10 months
Estimated Tuition: Virginia students ($398 per credit); out-of-state students ($408 per credit)

Naveen Jindal School of Management’s Professional MBA program can be completed entirely online with no on-campus residencies required. This professional MBA includes a concentration in real estate providing students with both an educational and practical basis for becoming skilled decision-makers within the industry.

Applicants to the program must have a bachelor’s degree from an accredited institution in the United States or its equivalent and must submit application materials such as competitive GMAT or GRE scores, letters of recommendation, a current resume, an essay, and TOEFL or IELTS for international applicants.

Consisting of 53 credits, the program includes 32 credits of core MBA courses and the remaining 21 for electives. The real estate concentration includes courses such as introduction to real estate, real estate finance and investment, real estate market analysis and investment, real estate law and contracts, and special topics in real estate.

On successful completion of the program, graduates can take up roles such as real estate brokers, marketing managers or directors, financial analysts, knowledge officers, strategic planners, business managers, information analysts, healthcare executives, sales executives, and more.

Location: Richardson, Texas
Accreditation: Association to Advance Collegiate Schools of Business (AACSB)
Expected Time to Completion: 21 months
Estimated Tuition: Resident ($57,105); non-resident ($95,052)

Liberty University offers a 100% online master of business administration program in real estate development helping students develop business and real estate skills relevant to human resources, management, accounting, marketing, and finance.

For admission to the program, applicants must have a bachelor’s degree from a regionally or nationally accredited institution along with a minimum grade point average of 3.0. Application requirements include a completed admission application, official college transcripts, undergraduate business prerequisites, and proof of English proficiency for international applicants.

The program consists of 45 credits including courses such as strategic marketing management, managerial finance, real estate operations, investment analysis, real estate development, property law, operations management, and international business.

The program opens up several opportunities for graduates. They can take up roles such as real estate developers, property managers, construction managers, land development managers, mortgage loan officers, real estate brokers, and leasing agents.

Location: Lynchburg, Virginia
Accreditation: Accreditation Council for Business Schools and Programs (ACBSP)
Expected Time to Completion: 24 months
Estimated Tuition: $565 per credit

Florida International University’s online Professional MBA (PMBA) program ranks at No. 9 in the world and No. 3 in the US in the QS World University Rankings (2020). This professional MBA with a specialization in real estate help students in gaining a mastery of real-world knowledge and real estate fundamentals in the areas of valuation & investment analysis.

The major admission requirements for the program include a bachelor’s degree or equivalent from an accredited college or university, a minimum upper-division GPA of 3.0, a current resume, a statement of purpose, and proficiency in the English language for international applicants. GMAT or GRE scores are optional.

Made up of 42 credits, the program includes core courses such as competitive strategy, accounting for managers, corporate finance, management of information systems, organizational behavior, and strategic management. The real estate concentration includes courses such as real estate markets, institutions, and practices and advanced real estate investment valuation.

Location: Miami, Florida
Accreditation: Association to Advance Collegiate Schools of Business (AACSB International)
Expected Time to Completion: 18 to 33 months
Estimated Tuition: $1,000 per credit

Professors to Know in Online MBA in Real Estate Programs

  • Ozgur Arslan-Ayaydin, PhD The University of Illinois at Chicago

    Dr. Ozgur Arslan-Ayaydin is a clinical professor of finance at the University of Illinois at Chicago. Before teaching at UIC, she was on the faculty of Hacettepe University in Turkey. She teaches or has taught courses such as international finance, international financial markets, introduction to finance, introduction to investments, and introduction to corporate finance. The Journal of Banking and Finance, the Review of Quantitative Finance and Accounting, and the European Research Studies Journal have all published her articles.

    She has won several laurels, including the UIC Silver Circle Teaching Award in 2016 and the “Docent” degree from the Inter University Council in Turkey in 2010. Dr. Arslan-Ayaydin earned her PhD and BSc in economics from Hacettepe University and her MBA in finance from the University of Leicester.

  • Cassandra Cole, PhD Florida State University

    Dr. Cassandra Cole teaches classes on retirement plans, corporate governance, and insurance regulation. An active member of the American Risk and Insurance Association (ARIA) and Southern Risk and Insurance Association (SRIA), she also serves as the director and department chair of the risk management and insurance program at Florida State University. She teaches courses at the graduate and undergraduate levels.

    Her research has appeared in acclaimed journals such as the Journal of Risk and Insurance, the Journal of Insurance Regulation, and the North American Actuarial Journal. Additionally, her work has earned her grants from Florida State University, the State of Florida, the Department of Labor, and the Florida Catastrophic Storm Risk Management Center. Dr. Cole completed her PhD from the University of Georgia and BBA from Howard University.

  • Bennie D. Waller, PhD Longwood University

    Dr. Benny Waller is a professor of finance and real estate at Longwood University’s College of Business and Economics. He is also the Director of the Center for Financial Responsibility. He currently teaches the ‘managing data for strategic decision-making’ course in the MBA program. Dr. Waller’s research and consulting are largely focused on the area of principal-agent and housing externality issues and the use of automated valuation models. His research has been published in prominent journals such as the Journal of Real Estate Finance and Economics, Real Estate Economics, and the Journal of Real Estate Research.

    He has received several awards such as the Journal of Real Estate Research Best Paper Award and the Graduate research award by Longwood University. He holds two doctoral degrees in management information systems and finance, both from the University of Mississippi. Dr. Waller completed his MBA from the University of North Carolina-Wilmington and his BSBA from Longwood University.

Farheen Gani
Farheen Gani

Farheen is a freelance writer, marketer, and researcher. She writes about technology, education, and marketing. Her work has appeared on websites such as Tech in Asia and Foundr, as well as top SaaS blogs such as Zapier and InVision. You can connect with her on LinkedIn and Twitter (@FarheenGani).

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