Online International Business Courses: Advantages and Disadvantages

onlinevsoncampusThere is no doubt as to the effectiveness and credibility of many fine business administration curricula being offered today from the Internet via online courses. In fact, in a recent Sloan Consortium report, a full 62 percent of those surveyed responded in the positive that students actually learned better from online courses than through on-site and in-class environments.

However, when it comes to online international business courses, another image emerges as to whether they are on the same par as on-site courses. Several distinctive advantages and disadvantages come to the forefront, and it is these differences that this article addresses.

Benefits of Online International Business Courses

Via the Internet, students, educators and business people in general become better informed of what is taking place in other foreign business platforms in an unprecedented manner.

Rapid-paced changes, developments and paradigm shifts in political, economic and peace/war situations lend themselves to use the Internet to keep one or several steps ahead of prevailing circumstances–in real-time. However, there are many more advantages including those listed below.

Online International Business Courses And Their Advantages


When comparing the flexibility of online programs versus the flexibility of on-campus programs, there is no doubt that on-site courses offer a wide range of schedule flexibility. However, online international business courses are rapidly catching up and soon will bypass the courses traditionally available on-campus.

Privileged Information

Protection from business and commercial trends that develop as a result of not having direct lines of communication on a regular daily basis is one major advantage. For instance, someone studying via online courses in the US, knows through other social network platforms that India prefers popular beverages infused with honey and not with sugar. However, another country’s market finds sugar-laced drinks preferable. So, a shift in business focus is warranted by selling that sugar-laced product to the other nation.


The relative peace of mind of knowing a busy mom can put the children to bed at night and then access her final examination on the kitchen table laptop is just too valuable an asset to pass up. Convenience and comfort now becomes an overwhelming plus for many students.

Instructor Availability

While the contrary is many times thought true, many student actually find they have more access to their instructors when they are online and not in their offices.

Learning Skills

Through the participation in online international business courses, students become cutting-edge savvy on latest technological trends in specific countries. Students can better access data on a particular country’s hiring requirements, hiring practices, job availability per profession and even if that country has a hiring scenario at all.

As students learn of trending skills and foreign languages, they become more marketable and are eagerly sought after as candidates for top position availability.

Costs And Expenses

Traditionally, online courses offered at many reputable and distinguished schools of business have tended towards being less expensive than on-campus courses. However, this is a moving constant that is beginning to move once again.

When housing arrangements, food costs, and transportation benefits are not considered, online courses today are slowing spiraling up from earlier marks on to a level more on par with on-campus course expenses.

Online International Business Courses And Their Disadvantages

There is another side to every coin and taking international business courses online is not an exception to this adage. Here are the disadvantages to enrolling in online programs:

Increased Complexity

With the emphasis now being on “global,” the markets now become more highly complicated and complex. Ethnic, religious and/or racial diversity with all accompanying peculiarities now make business managers more prone to avoid common workplace or even student conflicts.

However, in business it is not only what you know but whom you know that is vitally important. While online courses may foster a platform for networking and business connections, face-to-face interactions and social skills may tend to decrease. Generally, no meeting at the water-cooler event or a Happy Hour drink to discuss latest management strategies result from an online business course. The best way to interact with a foreign client is still face-to-face.

Lack of College Memories

For many, college experiences vibrate throughout the years with fond memories. However, today’s lightening-fast online environments tend to leave some international students with a sense of being not rooted at all. Interestingly enough, although the globe is better connected at this time technologically speaking, many feel more disconnected than at any other time in history.

Lack of Exterior Motivation And Stimuli

Self-motivation is a “must” for ambitious business people. However, without basic interaction and mentor-ship by classroom instructors, students bear the full burden of responsibility and succeeding.

Lack of Reputable Accreditation Status

Unfortunately, many older established schools of business still have a sense of academia superiority over online business schools. Whether this is warranted or not, the stigma still persists in many circles.

Depending on a student’s circumstances and situations, online international business courses may offer the best alternative for some. However, it can be safe in assuming that today the advantages equal the disadvantages on an even level.