Online Human Resources Degree Programs

Human resources management degrees and certificates by distance learning

An online human resources degree is designed for learners who desire to earn their degree with minimal or no physical campus classroom attendance.

Human resources education imparts the skills needed to interact with and manage people within a business setting.

From assistants to managers, human resource (HR) professionals are integral to the proper functioning of organizations. Once mainly involved in recruiting and hiring new employees, as well as benefits and compensation, human resources management employees also work alongside top executives as part of the overall strategic planning.

In addition, they implement staff trainings, work to enhance employee morale, satisfaction, and productivity; handle negotiations, resolve problems, and ensure compliance with employment laws, all essential aspects of building a strong organization.

Why earn your human resources degree online?

More than 80% of human resource professionals are more accepting of online degrees, according to a survey by the Society for Human Resource Management, with 79% hiring someone with an online degree during the previous year. The increase in the reputation of online degrees is reinforced by the strengths of online programs:

  • Flexible schedule and format, with increased accessibility for students who cannot attend traditional classes
  • Strong curriculum taught by instructors with solid academic credentials and experience in the field they teach
  • Online programs have similar accreditation as campus-based programs
  • Increased potential for job promotion and higher pay with degree credentials
  • Credit for previous education: most online colleges will save you time and money by allowing you to transfer approved course credits that have been earned at another accredited college, or relevant work experience, towards your program requirements.

Online Human Resource Degrees and Programs

Because human resource management is a broad field, encompassing both administrative as well as more senior-level management degrees and programs, students have the option to select courses in the most relevant human resource areas. Some schools offer human resources degree online programs as specialties within business administration degree programs. In addition, online certificate programs in human resources are offered for learners who want to accelerate their career through various human resources functions.

Featured Online Universities with Human Resources Programs

University of Phoenix

  • Bachelor of Science in Business - Human Resource Management
  • Master of Business Administration - Human Resources Management

Strayer University

  • Bachelor of Business Administration - Human Resource Management
  • MBA - Human Resource Management
  • Master of Science in Human Resource Management - Human Resource Generalist
  • Master of Science in Human Resource Management - Human Resource and Organizational Development
  • Executive Graduate Certificate in Business Administration - Human Resource Management

Northcentral University

  • Master of Business Administration (MBA)/Human Resource Management
  • Doctor of Business Administration/Human Resources Management
  • Ph.D in Business Administration/Human Resources Management

What to expect from a human resources online degree

Online human resource management programs provide a stimulating learning environment with virtual interactions with both instructors and other students. While both online and campus-based degree programs provide an academic challenge, online learning has a few unique challenges:

  • While classes are virtual, many are not self-paced. Lectures occur at set times, with instructors and students logging into a virtual classroom. In addition, assignments and exams must be completed according to the class syllabus.
  • For some students, learning online requires additional self-discipline, with stronger time management skills. The online learning tools, however, facilitate this by enabling students to easily see approaching deadlines, such as exams and homework.
  • Students need to demonstrate a technical prowess early in the program in order to access the online learning tools, submit assignments electronically and navigate the virtual classroom interface.
  • Most online MBA in human resources programs have capstone courses that require students to complete individual and/or group research projects.

Starting a successful career in human resource management

A traditional or human resources online degree enables graduates to pursue many career options, such as HR administrator or manager, resume checker, job placement specialist or manager of college relations. Certain jobs, such as management positions, require a graduate degree, but in many cases professional certifications can provide HR professionals with a boost to their resume. Overall, starting salaries for entry-level HR professionals with a master's degree are greater than for those with a bachelor's degree, according to CareerBuilder.

In addition to the HR degree online, students can bolster their career by taking several other steps, including:

  • Don't be discouraged by starting in an entry-level position. These offer excellent opportunities to gain experience and responsibility.
  • An internship at a business, either arranged through your school or on your own, can provide you with exposure to the world of human resource management, as well as valuable contacts with other professionals.
  • Professional organizations are wonderful sources of advice and education, as well as excellent places to network with more experienced HR professionals.

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