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A business administration degree can open the door to many career paths. Business administration students can choose from a variety of career-focused concentrations, such as accounting and finance, information systems and supply chain management.
Types of Business Administration Concentrations
A degree in business administration usually requires introductory courses in both general education and the fundamentals of business. Many programs offer concentrations that prepare you to pursue a career in your chosen specialization.
The concentrations listed below are only a few of those offered by business administration programs, and may not be available in every program.
This concentration equips learners with knowledge and skills in many areas of accounting. Students learn about financial reporting, managerial accounting and decision making, taxation and its application to business, accounting information systems and auditing and attestation.
In addition to general business courses, advanced coursework for a concentration in accounting may include:
- Internal audit and control
- Forensic accounting and fraud examination
- Advanced cost accounting
- Accounting ethics
- Accounting data analytics
An accounting concentration equips learners to work as accountants or auditors. These professionals may work for privately or publicly held companies and government agencies. Graduates may also pursue careers as consultants, tax specialists or financial analysts.
A concentration in finance teaches students to become effective financial decision-makers. Learners explore the financial decisions organizations make, including investments, buying and selling assets, raising funds and risk management.
Finance is a broad topic, so coursework includes both foundational and specialized courses in the areas of real estate, corporate banking and investment analysis. Here are some courses you might see in a finance concentration:
- Principles of finance
- Principles of investments
- Supply chain management
- Real estate market analysis
- Derivative securities
- Enterprise valuation
Many finance-related careers become available with a concentration in finance. Such roles include portfolio management, securities analysis, risk management and insurance, financial analysis and commercial, mortgage and investment banking.
Nearly every industry needs experts in marketing. Due to this demand, many business administration programs offer marketing concentrations.
A marketing concentration prepares learners to become effective, creative decision-makers in business environments that are diverse, global and highly competitive. Students hone their skills in market research, product development, pricing strategies and building customer relationships.
Potential coursework may include the following:
- Sports marketing
- Buyer behavior
- Pricing and financial analysis
- Product design
- Marketing communication design
- Advertising theory and practice
A business administration degree with a concentration in marketing qualifies graduates for a variety of marketing careers. Potential roles include data analytics, digital marketing, market research, brand development, marketing management, advertising, sales management and product development.
A concentration in economics includes introductory business administration courses like microeconomics, macroeconomics, calculus and business writing. This concentration can build on your knowledge and skills in subjects like statistics and global and regional economics.
Coursework you can expect from this concentration includes:
- Behavioral economics
- Public finance
- Labor economics
- Industrial organization
- Economic research methods
A concentration in economics can prepare you for careers in economic consulting, law, financial analytics, banking and marketing.
In addition to a broad understanding of business, a concentration in information systems equips learners with skills in computer fundamentals and programming, network and database design, data analytics and systems security. This concentration teaches students to apply information technologies to solve business problems.
Courses you may encounter include:
- Business database systems
- Operating systems and networks
- Business analytics
- Applied data mining and analytics in business
- Web application development
- Strategic management
Career opportunities for graduates include business and systems analyst, cybersecurity manager, database administrator, software engineer, network administrator and business intelligence analyst.
Careers Paths in Business Administration
A degree in business administration qualifies students to work in an array of industries, from marketing and sales to finance and accounting. Graduates are prepared to enter the job market with confidence. These careers often offer above-average salaries as well, with management roles earning median salaries exceeding $120,000.
Median Annual Salary: $93,000
Job Growth (2020-2030): +14%
Education Needed: Bachelor’s degree, but a master’s degree in business administration (MBA) is often preferred
Business consultants help organizations gain or keep a competitive edge through recommendations and advice. These professionals conduct studies on a business, which may include interviewing personnel and observing practices used in the workplace. They then analyze data and provide a report to management. For more information, check out our article on how to become a business consultant.
Market Research Analyst
Median Annual Salary: $63,920
Job Growth (2020-2030): +22%
Education Needed: Bachelor’s degree in market research or another business-related field
Market research analysts work individually or in teams to help companies understand the services and products that customers want, and for what price. Market research analysts monitor marketing and sales trends, develop various methods to collect data from consumers and share data through accessible reports with management.
Median Annual Salary: $127,490
Job Growth: +7%
Education Needed: Bachelor’s degree recommended. Some positions may require only a high school diploma with experience and courses in business, management and marketing.
Sales manager roles vary based on the size of an organization. These professionals often recruit sales team members, develop training programs, set and achieve sales goals based on projections, analyze sales statistics and manage budgets. If you want to learn more about sales managers’ roles and responsibilities, read our article on how to become a sales manager.
Median Annual Salary: $135,030
Job Growth: +10%
Education Needed: Bachelor’s degree in marketing, communications, business or a related field
Marketing managers create strategies that help their organizations gain a sustainable, competitive advantage in a specific market. These professionals oversee the development, implementation and evaluation of marketing strategies, including market research, creating pricing schemes and collaborating with other departments. If this career path piques your interest, learn more in our article about how to become a marketing manager.
Human Resources Specialist
Job Growth: +10%
Education Needed: Bachelor’s degree in human resources, business, communications or a related field
Human resource specialists match job-seekers with employers. They communicate with employers to identify hiring needs. These professionals also facilitate hiring by conducting interviews and reference checks, running new employee orientations and ensuring the compliance of federal, state and local regulations.
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Frequently Asked Questions About Business Administration Degrees
What are the highest paying jobs in business administration?
Some of the highest paying jobs in business administration include chief executive roles. These professionals earn a median annual income of $179,520. Other positions include computer and information systems manager and financial manager, who earn median salaries of $159,010 and $131,710, respectively.
Are business administration jobs in demand?
Many business administration jobs are projected to grow by 8% from 2020-2030, which is about average. However, not all roles are expected to have average growth. For example, BLS projects that employment of market research analysts will grow by 22% as businesses gather and utilize larger amounts of data.
What subjects are in business administration?
Business administration encompasses subjects including supply chain management, accounting, international business, finance, real estate, marketing, information systems and human resource management.