Some schools offer a general business degree, which tends to provide an overview of the many areas of business and how they all interlink. Other schools offer specialized majors within their business school, like finance, accounting, or marketing.
Here, we’ll take a closer look at common business majors and the associated career paths graduates may decide to pursue.
The best business major is the one that helps you reach your career goals, but certain business degrees are associated with higher demand in the job market. According to a survey from the National Association of Colleges and Employers (NACE), business majors dominate six of the top 10 most in-demand bachelor’s degrees .
Here are the business majors that made their list:
Management information systems
Finance is the area of business that has to do with assets and capital. With a finance major, you can expect to learn about asset management, investments, and the way businesses interact with and operate within financial markets.
Entry-level job titles: Finance associate, financial advisor, investment banking analyst
Mid-career job titles: Financial manager, financial analyst, risk manager, hedge fund investment strategist
Median starting salary: $87,586 
Accounting majors learn how to guide a business’s financial decisions. You can anticipate coursework that involves preparing financial documents, assessing cash flow, and strategizing spending plans.
Entry-level job titles: Accounting associate, accounting representative, staff accountant
Mid-career job titles: Controller, forensic accountant, management accountant, securities analyst
Median starting salary: $68,713 
Business administration and management majors examine businesses from the perspective of a general manager. Their education typically covers the various ways different areas of business interact in order to learn strategic decision-making skills.
Entry-level job titles: Administrative assistant, operations analyst, management analyst
Mid-career job titles: Consultant, business advisor, operations research analyst, sales manager
Median starting salary: $65,000 
Supply chain management majors study the operations behind moving goods from one place to another. In addition to the logistics, these courses of study tend to emphasize the role of data analytics and modeling for decision-making.
Entry-level job titles: Supply chain associate, logistics coordinator, supply chain analyst
Mid-career job titles: Supply chain manager, logistics analyst, purchasing manager
Median starting salary: $72,304 
Management information systems are the data mechanisms that business leaders use for decision-making. With this major, you’ll learn how to use information technologies such as data science and business analytics to guide and enhance strategy.
Entry-level job titles: Operations research analyst, business analyst, information systems manager
Mid-career job titles: Business intelligence analyst, director of information technology, information security director
Median starting salary: $65,017 
Marketing is the area of business that marries business goals with consumer needs. As a marketing major, you’ll learn how to analyze and interpret consumer behavior and leverage communication skills in order to maximize profits.
Entry-level job titles: Marketing associate, social media marketer, assistant media planner
Median starting salary: $55,432 
Across all business majors, NACE projects an average starting salary of $60,695 . Regardless of your specific concentration, a business degree can set you up to pursue lucrative career options.
Here are additional common business majors that may align with your career goals:
Economics majors examine the intersection of business, policy, and the economy.
Entrepreneurship majors focus on leadership strategies for new business ventures.
Health care management majors study the business aspects of health care.
Human resource management majors learn people operations, including recruitment, compensation, and performance management.
Sustainable business majors study how business impacts the natural environment.
International business majors examine business relationships and processes in the global market.
Regardless of your specific area of study, it will be possible to move into different areas of business after graduation and throughout your career. In addition to upper-level coursework related to your major or concentration, most business schools require core business courses. This core coursework is typically designed to highlight key transferable skills across all areas of business.
Plus, there are ways to explore other areas of business throughout your undergraduate career even if you aren’t majoring in them. Here are a few ideas:
1. Minors: College minors are a series of about four or five courses in a designated subject area. Minoring in an area of business can demonstrate your knowledge without requiring the full course load of a major.
2. Electives: Electives are courses you take outside of your general education, major, and minor course requirements. These courses can enable you to explore areas of interest outside of your typical course of study.
3. Internships: Internships are work opportunities designed to give students hands-on experience while they pursue their degrees. Through an internship, you can see how businesses operate and get a better sense of the department you’re drawn to.
4. Student organizations: A few examples of student organizations that cater to business students include:
Beta Alpha Psi (an international society geared toward accounting and finance)
Commercial banking clubs
Commercial real estate clubs
According to the US Bureau of Labor Statistics, the median annual wage for jobs in business and finance in the United States was $76,570 in May 2021. By comparison, here are the median annual wages for people in other professions:
Many business programs require the completion of specific college courses before you can declare a business major. These usually consist of basic math courses and entry level business courses like Introduction to Financial Accounting and Principles of Management. Typically, you'll also be required to pass these classes with a grade of C or better.
According to the National Center for Education Statistics, the average cost to attend a public university in the United States for the 2019-2020 school year equaled $9,400, and the average cost to attend a private college or university equaled $36,700. This amounts to an estimated cost of $37,600 for a degree in business at a public university and $146,800 for a degree in business at a private college or university, providing it takes four years to get a degree.
1. National Center for Education Statistics. “Undergraduate Degree Fields,” https://nces.ed.gov/programs/coe/pdf/2021/cta_508c.pdf." Accessed April 27, 2022.
2. National Association of Colleges and Employers. “NACE Salary Survey: Winter 2022, https://www.naceweb.org/uploadedfiles/files/2022/publication/executive-summary/nace-2022-winter-salary-survey-executive-summary.pdf.” Accessed April 27, 2022.
3. Glassdoor. “Entry Level Finance Salaries, https://www.glassdoor.com/Salaries/entry-level-finance-salary-SRCH_KO0,19.htm.” Accessed April 27, 2022.
4. Glassdoor. “Entry Level Accounting Salaries, https://www.glassdoor.com/Salaries/entry-level-accounting-salary-SRCH_KO0,22.htm.” Accessed April 27, 2022.
5. US Bureau of Labor Statistics. “Occupational Outlook Handbook: Field of degree: Business, https://www.bls.gov/ooh/field-of-degree/business/business-field-of-degree.htm.” Accessed April 27, 2022.
6. Glassdoor. “Entry Level Supply Chain Manager Salaries, https://www.glassdoor.com/Salaries/entry-level-supply-chain-manager-salary-SRCH_KO0,32.htm.” Accessed April 27, 2022.
7. Salary.com. “Information Systems Entry Level Salary in the United States, https://www.salary.com/research/salary/posting/information-systems-entry-level-salary.” Accessed April 27, 2022.
8. Glassdoor. “Marketing Entry Level Salaries, https://www.glassdoor.com/Salaries/marketing-entry-level-salary-SRCH_KO0,21.htm.” Accessed April 27, 2022.
This content has been made available for informational purposes only. Learners are advised to conduct additional research to ensure that courses and other credentials pursued meet their personal, professional, and financial goals.