How to Choose an MBA Specialization


Pursuing a Masters in Business Administration (MBA) will prepare you for higher earning careers throughout the business sector. If you have a particular interest in one slice of the business world, a specialization in that area will offer you greater opportunities. Self-starters might benefit from an entrepreneurship specialization, while those interested in travel want to consider an MBA specializing in Hospitality and Tourism. By examining your own strengths and researching the programs at schools that interest you, you will find a specialization that fits you perfectly.

Things You'll Need

  • Undergraduate degree
  • GMAT scores
  • Internet access

Examining your interests

  • Consider your personal strengths. If you prefer working alone or if you consider yourself a leader, a specialization in entrepreneurship might help you in your quest to start your own business. Do you find health care intriguing? A specialization in Health Care Management might be your best option. Take an honest inventory of your strengths (and weaknesses).

  • Consider which classes interested you most in your undergraduate studies. If you shied away from math but loved international relations, you might want to consider an international program over Finance. It may also be wise to look at your grades from those courses, to determine which fields stimulate you intellectually.

  • Consider your career goals. Do you want to create your own business, or run part of an established franchise? Would you like to travel, or will you be happy settling down with a long-established corporation in a big city? Knowing where you want to be in five years will help you determine where you should begin looking now.

  • Research MBA specializations. While new field are arising, most schools have several standard specializations, including:





    Professional or General Studies

    International Relations

    Hospitality and Tourism



    Research your favorites, and consider where they may take you.

Examining schools

  • Look at notable programs with lists of specializations that interest you. Most university Web sites will include a list of specializations, or concentrations in their MBA information.

  • Ask for information from schools that interest you. In some cases, you may ask to meet with the professors who teach the specialization that interests you, which may help you in your decision to choose a certain field or university.

  • Schedule an appointment with your university department or program advisor, if you are currently enrolled. Your advisor may be able to offer some insight on your options based on your strengths and weaknesses.

  • Consider an online program. If you are working, or the university setting doesn't interest you, there are numerous online programs that will get you an MBA with a specialization of your choice. Just be sure that the school you choose is reputable and accredited.

Tips & Warnings

  • Be wary of unaccredited schools, which could provide a quick degree but may not offer the education or job opportunities you need.


  • Photo Credit business image by david levasseur from
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