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Want to Lead in the Digital Learning Industry? Get an MBA.

Do you need an MBA in digital learning? That depends on your goals. Read on to find out why digital learning leaders might want an MBA.


If you work in the digital learning industry you’re almost certainly a lifelong learner. You’re someone who constantly improves your skills to meet the challenges of a rapidly evolving industry. If your goal for 2022 is to increase your value in your organization or the employment marketplace, you might be looking for a credential that will help.

A Master’s in Organizational Psychology, Human Resources, Education, a certificate in Instructional Design or even Project Management may be on your list. But there’s one degree you might not have considered that can add real value to any digital learning leader’s resume: an MBA.

Now you might be thinking, “I’m not a CEO, I don’t need a Master’s in Business Administration.” But MBA’s aren’t just for CEO’s. Hear us out and decide for yourself if an MBA is right for you.

Why might digital learning leaders want an MBA?

You probably entered the digital learning industry with a desire to make a difference. You may have a personal mission that includes helping people learn or giving them the resources to reach their full potential. In many ways, digital learning is a noble pursuit. It’s also a business.

When you fully understand the business side of things, you’re able to reach more learners more effectively. Skills in budgeting and people and operations management help you use resources more efficiently so your team can achieve even more audacious goals. Plus, the entrepreneurial skills taught in many MBA programs will help you meet the challenges of the evolving digital learning industry.

Does every digital learning professional need an MBA?

No credential is right for everyone. Just as every member of a retail organization doesn’t need an MBA, there’s no need for every member of a digital learning team to have one either. If you’re developing content under the guidance of an instructional designer, reviewing courses for accessibility, or performing any other production-focused role, you probably don’t need an MBA right now.

But if you’re a leader in your organization, or plan to be, an MBA might be right for you. If you’re a product development manager, a Creative Manager, or a Manager of eLearning Development, an MBA could be exactly the credential you need to elevate your resume. It could help show employers that you can think strategically, set big-picture goals, and convey core values and strategies.

Do employers really care if I have an MBA?

Getting an MBA can certify your leadership and management skills. Among a sea of experienced applicants, someone with an MBA is likely to rise to the top. An MBA may be especially valuable if your goal is to transition into a leadership role. It helps you gain experience and shows employers that you’re willing to invest in yourself.

Besides, if you ever decide to strike out on your own as a consultant or contractor, an MBA can help you run your own business. Ditto if you get a great idea for an e-learning startup that you’d like to develop.

Does an MBA increase salary?

Few people have the time and financial resources to earn a degree that won’t offer a return on investment. Research shows that an MBA can help increase your salary. According to a Corporate Recruiter’s Survey, MBA graduates earn 77% more than those with a bachelor’s degree and 53% more than those hired based on experience alone.

Another study looked at salary gains in education specifically and found a 24.8% increase for graduates with an MBA compared to those without. Keep in mind that this includes in-person and online roles as well as classroom teachers. Results may vary for online-learning roles.

What if I don’t have time to earn an MBA?

An MBA might sound like a massive undertaking, but there are plenty of part-time and flexible programs that can help you earn your MBA while working full-time. One almost certainly exists to fit your needs and lifestyle. There are even some Education MBAs aimed specifically at people who work in the learning industry. Do some research to find one that meets your timeline, needs, and budget.

Do you need an MBA?

Let’s get one thing clear. Getting an MBA isn’t the only way to succeed in the digital learning industry. Depending on your role, it might not even be the best way. But if you are, or want to be, a leader in digital learning, an MBA might be exactly the credential you’ve been looking for.

For help finding your next digital learning role, contact Teamed. We’re always looking for skilled teammates to place with a growing list of employers seeking quality digital learning talent. Visit our job board today.

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