The Beginner's Guide to Different Types of Business Degrees

Types of Business Degrees

Take a look around your home. Nearly every item you own has an entire industry based around it, and each of those industries has multiple business functions within them. Because of this complexity, there is a huge variety in the different types of business degrees available to you.

With so many specializations within business degree programs, it can be a bit daunting when trying to decide which best fits your interests or career aspirations. To help you decipher the diversity, we broke down a list of some of the most common types of business degrees, the courses to expect and some examples of the jobs you can do with them.

Keep reading to get acclimated with 15 facets of the business field and start to get a feel for which area appeals to you.

15 Types of business degrees to consider

Accounting

Overview: Love numbers? Have an eye for detail? When studying accounting you will develop your understanding of generally accepted accounting principles, tax law, the process of managing financial documents and how it impacts business operations. The accounting field has several potential career paths and this degree will equip you to pursue different types of accounting, audit or tax-related positions within a variety of organizations.

COMMON COURSE SUBJECTS:

POTENTIAL JOB TITLES:

Accounting

Accountant

Financial analysis

Auditor

Taxation

Payroll manager

Advertising

Overview: Think you have the creativity to develop an ad that cuts through the clutter and sticks in the mind of a potential customer? With an advertising degree you’ll learn how to make a message stand out from the crowd by learning about what makes an audience tick and how to best reach them. This is a great choice if you’re looking for a way to leverage your creative ability in the world business.

COMMON COURSE SUBJECTS:

POTENTIAL JOB TITLES:

Market research

Account executive

Consumer behavior

Copywriter

Brand management

Media planner

Business management

Overview: There’s a lot to learn about managing a business or department. A business management degree will give you a solid comprehensive foundation in important business areas like accounting, sales, operations and organizational leadership. You’ll also be better equipped to manage and lead a team of people, which is beneficial if you have hopes of advancing your career into leadership positions. 

COMMON COURSE SUBJECTS:

POTENTIAL JOB TITLES:

Accounting

Sales manager

Marketing

Account manager

Organizational leadership

Project manager

Economics

Overview: If you choose to study economics, you can expect to learn about economic principles and theory, including the use of math and data analysis.  An economics degree can help prepare you for analyzing and forecasting economic trends in order to improve business operations and performance.

COMMON COURSE SUBJECTS:

POTENTIAL JOB TITLES:

Macroeconomics

Budget analyst

Microeconomics

Contract specialist

Business statistics

Economist

Entrepreneurship

Overview: If you want to start, build and manage a business of your own, an entrepreneurship degree can help you to develop the necessary skills to succeed. However, don’t be fooled into thinking this degree is only for aspiring business owners. Most of the principles and courses can be applied in any business setting.

COMMON COURSE SUBJECTS:

POTENTIAL JOB TITLES:

Accounting

Business owner

Performance management

Business manager

Business strategy

Management analyst

Finance

Overview: If you choose to study finance, you’ll learn a broad range of concepts and skills including financial analysis, economics, statistics and portfolio management. Majoring in finance will help you pursue opportunities in finance sectors as well as accounting or investment areas.

COMMON COURSE SUBJECTS:

POTENTIAL JOB TITLES:

Financial modeling

Risk manager

Portfolio management

Portfolio analyst

Business law

Financial analyst

Healthcare management

Overview: It takes a lot of business acumen to keep a healthcare facility running smoothly and profitably. This major prepares you for providing business management leadership strategies designed to address the unique challenges and intricacies within the growing healthcare industry. You will learn about many of the proven management techniques with a focus on the nuances found within the healthcare industry.

COMMON COURSE SUBJECTS:

POTENTIAL JOB TITLES:

Policy management

Health services manager

Healthcare operations

Patient care associate

Healthcare law

Medical director

Hospitality management

Overview: If you have a passion for working with people and a knack for making sure everyone is taken care of, then a hospitality management degree may be right for you. Hotels, event venues and other similar establishments have unique management needs that are different than other businesses. Utilizing a variety of management and communications skills is important for making sure operations run smoothly and guests leave happy.

COMMON COURSE SUBJECTS:

POTENTIAL JOB TITLES:

Tourism

Guest services manager

Business administration

Hotel manager

Human resources

General manager

Human resources

Overview: This field is all about people. Whether it’s helping employees with navigating benefits enrollment or helping secure the top talent needed for business growth, this field relies on impeccable interpersonal skills.  With a human resources (HR) degree, you will learn the skills necessary for managing business and labor practices in addition to learning about organizational development, resources planning and training.

COMMON COURSE SUBJECTS:

POTENTIAL JOB TITLES:

Business management

HR generalist

Organizational behavior

Recruiter

Employment law

Benefits specialist

International business

Overview: International business focuses on – you guessed it – global business organizations. Multinational corporations need employees who are well-suited to deal with the unique challenges presented by doing business across multiple countries.

COMMON COURSE SUBJECTS:

POTENTIAL JOB TITLES:

International marketing

Management analyst

Global commerce

Supply chain analyst

Business ethics

Business development specialist

Marketing

Overview: Want to help grow and maintain a business by attracting and retaining customers? This is a great option. By majoring in marketing, you’ll be focused on learning the fundamentals of areas such as market research, communication and marketing strategies.  The marketing department of a business helps accomplish tasks such as product promotion or consumer research in order to achieve business goals like increasing sales, building brand awareness and improving customer retention.

COMMON COURSE SUBJECTS:

POTENTIAL JOB TITLES:

Consumer behavior

Marketing manager

Digital marketing

Marketing coordinator

Communications

Marketing specialist

Project management

Overview: Are you a natural planner and organizer? If so, project management may appeal to you. A degree in project management will help you acquire the skills needed to oversee projects of all sizes. You will learn how to keep all elements of a project accounted for, on-time, (hopefully) under budget—and if all of that fails, what to do when things go wrong!

COMMON COURSE SUBJECTS:

POTENTIAL JOB TITLES:

Organizational management

Project manager

Leadership

Business analyst

Project management

Project coordinator

Public relations

Overview: Public relations (PR) professionals interact with the public on behalf of the organization they represent. To do this, you must be an excellent communicator and business strategist. Majoring in PR will teach you the principles of strategic communication, community event planning and how to manage relationships with news media.

COMMON COURSE SUBJECTS:

POTENTIAL JOB TITLES:

Communications

Public relations manager

Advertising

Event coordinator

Public speaking

Communications specialist

Statistics

Overview: We live in an era where more data is being collected by businesses than ever before. But what good is that data if there’s no one around to collect, organize and make sense of it all? Statisticians are trained in the collection, organization, analysis and interpretation of numbered data sets. They use these skills to help improve the decision-making ability of businesses by uncovering and planning for trends or patterns on which to act.

COMMON COURSE SUBJECTS:

POTENTIAL JOB TITLES:

Algebra

Statistician

Calculus

Data analyst

Statistics

Business analyst

Supply chain management

Overview: Ever wonder how the products you order online ends up on your doorstep within days? To steal a line from UPS: That’s logistics! A supply chain management degree will prepare you to handle the intricacies of managing a global supply chain (and all of the moving parts that come with it) to ensure a business’ operations are running efficiently.

COMMON COURSE SUBJECTS:

POTENTIAL JOB TITLES:

Inventory management

Logistician

Supply chain risk

Logistics analyst

International business

Operations manager

Choose your business career path

Now that you have a better understanding of the different types of business degrees and the career opportunities associated with each, it’s time for you to do some self-evaluation. Do any of the specializations above match your skills and interests? Going forward, your best bet is to find a few areas that appeal to you and dig deeper to learn more about the ins and outs of each focus-area.

For more information about specific business-related career fields, download the Business Career Outlook guide.

 

AUTHOR’S NOTE: This article was originally published in October 2013. It has since been updated to include information relevant to 2016.

 

Related articles:

External links provided on Rasmussen.edu are for reference only. Rasmussen College does not guarantee, approve, control, or specifically endorse the information or products available on websites linked to, and is not endorsed by website owners, authors and/or organizations referenced.

Will is a Content Marketing Specialist at Collegis Education. He researches and writes student-focused articles on a variety of topics for Rasmussen College. He is passionate about learning and enjoys writing engaging content to help current and future students on their path to a rewarding education.

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