Top 10 Business Degrees for ROI |

Top 10 Business Degrees for ROI

By Amelia Hopkins

Updated May 27, 2019 Updated May 27, 2019

Which MBA courses offer the best return on investment (ROI) for business students? Our latest report explores the average salaries of MBA graduates and compares them to their initial investment. Below are the top 10 institution's in the world for ROI:

1. Stanford Graduate School of Business, University in Stanford, California 

Stanford is the highest-ranked university in the QS Return on Investment Report: Full-Time MBA 2018, giving students a 10-year ROI of a jaw-dropping US$1,023,150 - more than seven times the original domestic tuition fees for the course and the only institution to crack the million dollar ROI ceiling. Additionally, the three-month post-graduation salary average of US$140,600, is over US$60,000 higher than the average pre-MBA salary!

2. Imperial College Business School

Imperial College offers one of the world’s most coveted MBA qualifications, and it’s not hard to see why. The 10-year ROI stands at US$870,200, almost 14 times higher than the domestic tuition fee rate. Three months after graduation, 92% of graduates had accepted job offers with a difference between their pre- and post-graduation salaries of US$48,500.

3. The University of Hong Kong

The University of Hong Kong is third on this list, and the only institution in Asia to make it into the top 10. The 10-year ROI stands at around US$845,350, and it’s estimated that most graduates will have paid back the tuition fees by the 27th month after graduation. Three months after finishing the course, 96% of students had accepted a job role at around US$48,000 higher than their pre-MBA salary.

4. The Vlerick Business School, Katholieke Universiteit Leuven

Vlerick Business School offers one of Europe’s top-ranked MBA qualifications. The 12-month course has a 10-year ROI of US$836,775, which is almost 20 times higher than the original tuition fees for domestic students. The average salary three months after graduation is US$33,000 higher than the pre-MBA salary while 86% of students had accepted a job offer at this point.

5. Ross School of Business, University of Michigan, US

Ross School of Business, part of the University of Michigan, is the second US-based institution in the top 10. The institution’s 20-month course offers a 10-year ROI of around US$826,300 and estimates that students will have paid back the initial cost 40 months after graduation. Three months after graduation, 92% of students had secured employment and their average post-graduation salary is US$120,000, an impressive US$57,600 higher than the average pre-MBA salary.

6. Tepper Business School, Carnegie Mellon University

Tepper Business School is a 21-month course based in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania.  The average post-graduation salary is around US$117,700, around US$63,70 higher than students received before the qualification. The 10-year ROI is a huge US$816,525, over six times more than the initial cost of the course for domestic students.

7. The MIT Sloan School of Management, MIT

MIT is the institution which needs no introduction, regularly topping rankings around the world. The business school’s MBA is 24 months in length, and they estimate students will have paid off the initial cost of the course 48 months after graduation. The 10-year ROI stands at around US$788,950. Students can expect to bring in approximately US$58,300 more after graduation and 81% of graduates have secured a job within three months.


INSEAD is one of the world’s largest business schools. Their Paris based MBA takes 10 months to complete and 84% of graduates have accepted job offers three months after graduation. The ROI averages US$768,500 and students can expect a salary of around US$103,700. This represents a figure US$46,700 higher than the average pre-course salary.

9. Mannheim Business School, University of Mannheim

Ninth on the list is Germany’s Mannheim. This 12-month course costs US$41,500 but within only 21 months students are estimated to pay that back. After graduation, students can expect salaries of around US$93,600, which is about US$57,900 higher than the average salary pre-qualification. The 10-year ROI of the course is US$757,000.

10. Goizueta Business School of Emory University

The final institution in the top 10 is Goizueta Business School of Emory University based in Atlanta, Georgia. The 22-month course has an average 10-year ROI of US$755,150 - over six times higher than the domestic tuition fees, which students are estimated to have paid off 41 months after graduation. The post-graduation salary is around US$116,200, representing a salary boost of approximately US$58,700 when compared with the pre-qualification salary.


This article was originally published in November 2017 . It was last updated in May 2019

Want more content like this Register for free site membership to get regular updates and your own personal content feed.

Written by

Amelia Hopkins is a writer for TopMBA, covering the latest news in business and business education. A graduate of the University of Leeds and Yorkshire native, she enjoys reading, travelling and talking incessantly about the countryside.