Get Schooled: Breaking down seven Alberta business schools
Find out what each has to offer
by Alberta Venture Staff
Alberta Venture’s Guide to Business Education
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Faculty of Business
For busy professionals, Athabasca University (AU) is the ultimate in flexible learning, offering a full spectrum of online business programs that range from undergraduate degrees and certificates all the way through to its Doctorate of Business Administration. AU is one of the most respected online programs in the country.
Noteworthy: AU’s Bachelor of Commerce, Accounting Major has been CMA-accredited since 2011. The school is also working on an accelerated track for its MBA that will be available to students who already have a bachelor of commerce or management.
Business students: 14,000
Undergrad cost per credit: $221
MBA tuition: $48,865
School of Business
Accredited as a university in 2006, MacEwan is a student-focused institution that emphasizes practical education. While it only offers diplomas and undergraduate degrees, MacEwan offers several unique programs, like its Supply Chain Management Co-Op major for the Bachelor of Commerce, and several continuing education business courses on subjects from marketing to leadership.
Noteworthy: Recognizing the importance of international trade, the MacEwan School of Business is home to the Institute of Asia Pacific Studies. Its two-year Asia Pacific Management diploma includes a six-week practicum in Asia and transfers directly into the third year of the Bachelor of Commerce degree.
Undergrad cost per credit: $152
JR Shaw School of Business
NAIT offers flexible business programs with part-time, evening and online courses and small class sizes. NAIT’s programs focus on applied, practical learning. Students frequently have the opportunity to work with real businesses or participate in simulations including the Rotman International Trading Competition.
Noteworthy: NAIT’s “Trades to Degrees” pathway, launched in 2012, is one of the first programs in North America that allows certified tradespeople to be admitted directly into the third year of the Bachelor of Business Administration. Students can expand professional experience while learning about leadership, management and entrepreneurialism.
Business Students: 2,000 full-time / 12,000 part-time
Undergrad cost per credit: $220
School of Business
SAIT Polytechnic’s diplomas and undergraduate degrees emphasize practical skills and hands-on learning. Many programs offer a practicum or paid work experience component. SAIT also offers custom corporate training on subjects ranging from accounting to team building.
Noteworthy: The new Lean Management certificate teaches students how to apply the principals of lean thinking to any industry.
Students may complete the entire certificate or take only those courses relevant to them.
Undergrad cost per credit: $187
University of Alberta
Alberta School of Business
A globally-recognized “Top 100” business school, the Alberta School of Business offers undergraduate, graduate and doctoral business programs, as well as a robust selection of executive education seminars. The U of A has one of Canada’s only fully bilingual Bachelor of Commerce degrees and a co-op program that includes international work opportunities.
Noteworthy: The University of Alberta recently launched Entrepreneurship@UAlberta, an initiative that aims to encourage entrepreneurial thinking across all programs. It also opened eHUB, an on-campus startup centre open to students with business ideas regardless of their faculty.
Bachelor of Commerce students: 2,000
MBA students: 500
Executive Education students: 1,980
Undergrad cost per credit: $175
MBA tuition: $25,900
University of Calgary
Haskayne School of Business
Haskayne offers a variety of well-regarded general business degrees, but could be considered the unofficial school of Alberta’s energy industry. Its resource-focused programs are internationally respected for their balance of management, energy and sustainability. Haskayne is home to the Institute for Resource Industries and Sustainability Studies and its interdisciplinary Master of Science in Sustainable Energy Development is one of the only programs of its kind.
Noteworthy: The Global Energy Executive is offered in partnership with IHS and consists of five learning modules covering every aspect of the energy industry, from leadership essentials to innovation and climate change. Students come from all over the world and complete several two-week residencies in Calgary, London, Houston, the Middle East and Asia.
Business school students: 3,000
Undergrad cost per credit: $180
MBA tuition: $32,462.40
University of Lethbridge
Faculty of Management
University of Lethbridge offers business education with small class sizes at its Southern Alberta campus. For those outside of Lethbridge, some courses are offered in Edmonton and Calgary. The Faculty of Management’s “Theory into Practice” programs give students the chance to take their education out of the classroom through co-op placements, case competitions and the applied consulting program. The Centre for Financial Market Research and Teaching is the best-equipped academic trading room in Alberta and gives students hands-on experience in trading.
Notable: Beginning in September 2014, University of Lethbridge is offering the Management Honours Program, which includes a six credit-hour thesis. The program is geared towards students considering graduate studies, interested in research, or who want to study a particular subject in depth.
Undergrad cost per credit: $177
Return on Education