Kelley Direct Online MBA & MS frequently asked questions (FAQ)

Below you’ll find the answers to the questions prospective students ask us about the Kelley Direct Online MBA & MS programs. If you don’t find what you’re looking for, please contact us at kdirect@indiana.edu or 877-785-4713.


Degree options & MBA dual degree

What is the Kelley Direct Online MBA?

There are four main components for our 54-credit online MBA curriculum including the core courses, elective options, Kelley On Campus (formerly Kelley Connect Week) experiences, and experiential learning options. You may choose to tailor your electives in a specific area, resulting in a major, or you may add a dual degree with only 12 additional credits. This is a great way to save time and money. One thing to keep in mind: With a dual degree, you cannot have an MBA major, as your MS degree will be considered your concentration. Major or dual degree areas are:

  • Business Analytics
  • Digital Technology Management
  • Entrepreneurship and Corporate Innovation
  • Finance
  • Marketing
  • Strategy and Leadership
  • Supply Chain and Operations

Explore curriculum

An MBA dual degree is also available.

What MS degrees are offered?

Those looking to pursue a standalone MS degree can pursue one of our 30-credit master of science degrees:

When do I decide on an MBA dual degree or major?

Those interested in pursuing a dual degree or concentration will apply as regular MBA students; there is no separate application for declaring a dual degree or major. Students admitted into the program will work with their academic advisor to add an MS degree or MBA major to their plan of study. 

Learn more about MBA dual degree

Coursework & student experience

Do you have live, synchronous class sessions?

On average, students enjoy two live class sessions per week total. Live sessions are held via Zoom allowing for real-time interaction and engagement. Live sessions typically last about an hour to 90 minutes, usually starting between 6 to 9 p.m. ET. Our students are busy working professionals who report that these sessions fit easily into their week and that they are some of the most valuable aspects of the learning experience. Given the busy schedules of our students, our faculty can work with you on alternatives if you need to miss a live session here or there. Most students find these sessions extremely valuable and say they wouldn’t miss them for anything.

I am a busy working professional. Is this online MBA flexible?

Yes! Students typically complete the Kelley Direct Online MBA degree in two years while working full-time. Most students enroll in 6 credits per term for the duration of the program and are able to juggle courses, work, and life. We have designed a flexible curriculum for working professionals, which enables you to accelerate or extend your plan of study and complete your degree at your own pace.

Watch a live Q&A with Kelley Direct Online MBA students and alumni to hear what it's like to balance the program and continue to work.

Watch the Q&A

What is Kelley On Campus?

Kelley On Campus, formerly called Kelley Connect Week, is an intensive case study competition for Kelley Direct Online MBA students that takes place on the Indiana University campus in Bloomington, IN. Students are required to attend two sessions of Kelley On Campus (each a 1.5-credit course), typically at the beginning of their experience and again near the end of the Kelley Direct Online MBA program. Most students say that the Kelley On Campus sessions are the most impactful academic activities they have ever experienced.

Experience Kelley On Campus

What is the timeline to complete the program?

The Kelley Direct Online MBA can be completed in as little as two years. With the flexibility our program offers, you have up to four years to complete the MBA or up to five years to complete the MBA dual degree. Accelerating your pace faster than two years might be possible, but there may be limited course offerings and/or availability.

See Academic Calendar

Career services & networking

How will Kelley Direct help me accomplish my career goals?

Kelley Direct provides online MBA students with a robust array of career services, as well as access to a network of more than 123,000 living Kelley School of Business alumni. In addition to in-person networking opportunities at Kelley On Campus, we offer traditional services such as job boards, access to online resources, dedicated career coaching, and professional development classes. Kelley’s career services last a lifetime, so alumni can reach out to our career coaches years after graduating for personalized assistance crafting a resume or preparing for an interview.

Explore Graduate Career Services

How do you network in an online program?

Our students tell us that every interaction they have with peers, faculty, and staff during their MBA experience is an opportunity to network. During live virtual class sessions, office hours with faculty, and collaboration with peers while involved with our Student Leadership Association, students enjoy many opportunities to make connections in an online environment. In addition, we offer various ways to connect in-person including biannual Global Connect Nights. It’s an opportunity for you to meet with other Kelley students and alumni in locations across the globe. Whether you are at Kelley On Campus building bonds with your case team or collaborating virtually on group projects with students around the globe, you will grow your personal and professional network.

Accreditation & reputation

How will the degree appear on my diploma?

The Kelley Direct Online MBA & MS programs are offered by the Kelley School of Business at Indiana University. The Kelley School’s world-renowned faculty will teach your Kelley Direct courses. Your diploma will indicate you received an MBA or MS degree from the Kelley School of Business.

Is this an accredited online MBA program?

The Kelley School of Business and the Kelley Direct Online MBA are accredited by AACSB International. The AACSB accreditation process includes rigorous self-evaluation and peer-review elements, as well as a continuous improvement review every five years to ensure we are improving over time.

Is this online MBA respected?

The Kelley Direct Online MBA is the longtime leader in online education with a proven reputation for success. Other schools look to us for guidance on virtual instruction because of our expertise. Our renowned Kelley School of Business faculty have been teaching online classes since the 1990s. We are currently ranked the #1 best online MBA by Poets&Quants and the best online MBA for veterans by U.S. News & World Report. Employers view the Kelley Direct Online MBA as a rigorous, quality MBA program, and they often tell us how much they respect the dedication and talent of our graduates. Many Kelley Direct Online MBA students—about 64%—are promoted while in the program.

View rankings

Cost & funding options

What is my investment? How much does an online MBA cost?

For the most up-to-date tuition and fees, please visit our Tuition & Financial Aid website. You are responsible for the cost of books and travel expenses for Kelley On Campus. Most students take advantage of employer tuition reimbursement or financial aid opportunities.

Learn more about tuition and financial aid

Are scholarships available?

Merit-based scholarships are available for MBA and MS students and are heavily weighted toward an applicant's GMAT/GRE performance, as well as academic performance at the undergraduate and graduate level, professional experience, and leadership progression. You do not need to submit an additional application for scholarship consideration. The admissions committee awards scholarships in conjunction with the offer of admission to the program.

Kelley Direct partners with Forté, a foundation that works to elevate women in business. As part of our Forté partnership, we provide merit-based scholarships for women applicants. Those who participate in the Forté MBALaunch program will have their Kelley Direct application fee waived.

Learn about the Forté MBALaunch program

Military benefits

Are there online MBA benefits for military students?

IU accepts most military tuition assistance, including the Post-9/11 GI Bill®. The Center for Veteran and Military Students can help determine what benefits are available to you. Indiana University waives the $75 application fee for military and veteran applicants. Thank you for serving our country.

Resources for military students

Please note: GI Bill® is a registered trademark of the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs (VA). More information about education benefits offered by VA is available at www.benefits.va.gov/gibill.


How do I apply?

The application process for domestic and international students, including our application deadlines, can be found on our How to Apply page. The Kelley Direct Phase 1 application is free and only takes a few minutes to complete if you have a resume on hand. We encourage you to start it now—before taking the GMAT or GRE—as you continue to consider your options. Once you submit, you will be contacted via email regarding our Phase 1 decision. If you are selected to continue the application, an admissions team member will contact you to schedule an enrollment interview and walk you through Phase 2 of the admissions process.

Apply now

When will I be notified of an admission decision?

Admission decisions are made after both Phase 1 and Phase 2 of the admissions process. Once the program application and your resume are received for Phase 1, we will review your experience and background. You will be contacted via email within one to two weeks with a Phase 1 decision. If you are selected to continue your application, an admissions team member will contact you to schedule an enrollment interview. Once your Phase 2 application is complete (including the interview, the IU Graduate School application, and additional documents), the admissions committee will begin the Phase 2 review process. Typically, students are notified of the final admissions decision within two to three weeks.

How to apply

Start application

What are the GMAT/GRE requirements?

We offer a limited number of highly competitive GMAT/GRE waivers to qualified applicants. See How to Apply for information on waiver requests. You may request a GMAT/GRE test waiver when you submit your Phase 1 application. Once we have received your completed application, you will be contacted via email within one to two weeks regarding our test waiver decision.

Tips on how to apply

How will taking the GMAT/GRE benefit me and strengthen my application?

Your GMAT/GRE score is an indicator of the success you’ll have in the Kelley Direct program. As a top-ranked program, we require the GMAT or GRE to ensure our students are talented and motivated. Taking the GMAT/GRE can also help you in the following ways:

  • Studying for the test is excellent preparation for the rigorous coursework in the Kelley Direct Online MBA & MS Programs. It gets you into an academic routine—something you’ve likely not experienced in some years—and enables you to hit the ground running when your program begins.
  • Your score may qualify you for more scholarship opportunities. Applicants with high GMAT/GRE scores receive the largest merit-based scholarships.

While we do offer GMAT waivers, we strongly encourage prospective students to take the GMAT/GRE. Information on waiver requests is outlined on our How to Apply page.

Do you provide a GMAT/GRE waiver?

We offer a limited number of highly competitive GMAT/GRE waivers to qualified applicants. Information on waiver requests is outlined on our How to Apply page.

Do you provide application fee waivers?

Application fee waivers are available for veterans and for women who participate in the Forté MBALaunch program.

Transfer credit policy

What is your transfer credit policy?

The Kelley Direct Online MBA program may accept up to six hours of transfer credits in accordance with our transfer credit policy and with approval of program leadership. Transfer credit will only be evaluated by program leadership upon admission to the program. Credit must have been earned within the last five years, cannot count toward another degree at IU or another institution, and must have been completed prior to matriculation into Kelley Direct. Credit must have been obtained at an AACSB accredited business school with a grade of A or B.