Resources › For Students and Parents Degree and Certificate Options for Aspiring Business Majors Education Options for Every Level Share Flipboard Email Print vm/E+/Getty Images For Students and Parents Business School Business Specializations Business Degree Options Choosing A Business School Business School Admissions MBA Programs & Rankings Business Careers and Internships Student Resources Homework Help Private School Test Prep College Admissions College Life Graduate School Law School Distance Learning View More By Karen Schweitzer Business Education Expert Karen Schweitzer is a business school admissions consultant, curriculum developer, and education writer. She has been advising MBA applicants since 2005. our editorial process Karen Schweitzer Updated February 24, 2019 A business degree, diploma, or certificate is one of the most practical options for individuals wishing to pursue higher education. Business majors can apply their education to almost every facet of the workforce. Business is the backbone of every industry, and every industry needs trained professionals to manage operations. If you aren't sure what you want to do after graduation, business is a great option. Program Options for Business Majors There are many different program options open to aspiring business majors. Those who have a high school diploma can choose to enter a business diploma or business certificate program. Another good option is an associate program in business. For business professionals who already have work experience and an associate's degree, a bachelor degree program with a focus on general business or a business specialty is a great choice. Business majors who already have a bachelor's degree are a good candidate for a master's degree in business or an MBA degree. Both options will help to propel an individual forward within their career. The final program option for business majors is the doctorate. Doctorate degrees are the highest level degrees that can be earned in business study. Business Diploma and Certificate Programs Business diploma and certificate programs offer aspiring business majors a chance to earn an undergraduate diploma or certificate in a short period of time. Coursework is often accelerated, allowing students to learn a great deal in a one or two semester time frame. Programs can usually be taken online or at an institution of higher learning and can focus on anything from general business to accounting to some other specialization. Associate Degree Programs in Business Associate degree programs are the perfect starting point for aspiring business majors. The education gained in an associate degree program can lead to a good job in the business arena and will also help to lay the foundation needed for the pursuit of a bachelor degree and beyond. On average, it takes anywhere from 18 months to two years to complete an associate degree program in business. Bachelor Degree Programs in Business A bachelor's degree program in business ought to be considered by anyone who wishes to climb the corporate ladder quickly. A bachelor's degree is often the minimum degree required for many positions within the field. Most business programs last two years, but certain universities over accelerated programs that can be completed in one year's time. Master's Degree Programs in Business A master degree program in business can greatly enhance career prospects. A master's program will allow you to focus specifically on one topic. The right program can train you to be an expert in your field. Most business programs last two years, but accelerated programs are available. MBA Degree Programs An MBA degree, or Master of Business Administration degree, is one of the most sought after and respected degrees in the business world. Admissions are often competitive, and most programs require a bachelor's degree and at least two to three years of formal work experience. MBA programs last anywhere from one to two years, and usually result in a higher salary for graduates. Doctorate Degree Programs in Business Doctorate degree programs in business are the final step in the academic ladder. Students who earn a doctorate in business are qualified to work as a consultant, researcher, or teacher in the field of business. Most doctorate programs require students to choose a specific area of financing, such as finance or marketing, and last anywhere from three to five years.