In this article, we profile the top 30 most affordable online master's in human resources degree programs.

The job outlook for human resource positions has always been favorable. According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, HR jobs have not been impacted by a shrinking economy. In fact, jobs for human resource managers are expected to grow by approximately 13 percent through the next six years. But in order to secure HR management roles, advanced degrees are usually required. Thankfully, online options are available.

Methodology

We examined approximately 75 institutions offering accredited online master's degree programs in human resources, human resource management, or an MBA with concentration in human resources. We selected schools with rankings from Forbes magazine, The Princeton Review, or U.S. News and World Report. We then chose the top 30 most affordable colleges and universities based on the most current published graduate tuition price and fees from NCES College Navigator. Our #1 school is the most affordable choice.

Below are the 30 most affordable top online master's degree programs in human resources.

#30 – Robert Morris University

Online Master's in Human Resource Management

Moon Township, Pennsylvania

Website

Graduate Tuition/Fees: $24,300

An affordable online master's in human resources program may be challenging to find. Both accreditation and affordability are important when choosing an advanced degree. Robert Morris University offers both. Successful graduates receive an online MS in human resource management, and advanced understanding of HR concepts like development, retention, retirement planning, and succession. Required courses include compensation management, employee rights under law, finance and accounting for human resource managers, and organizational behavior theory. Robert Morris is regionally ranked with U.S. News and World Report as the 66th best regional university in the North. The online graduate business programs (excluding the MBA, but including HR) rank #48 out of approximately 130 schools.

More information on Robert Morris University

#29 – American InterContinental University

Online MBA w/ Specialization in Human Resource Management

Schaumburg, Illinois

Website

Graduate Tuition/Fees: $20,549

American InterContinental University offers an accredited master's in human resources online that combines business administration with advanced HR skills. Successful graduates earn an online MBA in human resource management. The program is designed to take eleven months to complete, with classes delivered entirely online. Required courses include business research for decision making, employment law, global financial management, human resource strategy, leadership and ethics for managers, and strategic management. The program and specializations are accredited by the Accreditation Council for Business Schools and Programs (ACBSP). The university's online programs are ranked with major publications like U.S. News and World Report. In fact, the online MBA program ranks #136 in the country.

More information on American InterContinental University

#28 – Pennsylvania State University World Campus

Online Master's in Human Resources and Employment Relations

University Park, Pennsylvania

Website

Graduate Tuition/Fees: $19,832

Pennsylvania State University's World Campus offers an online master's degree in human resources program that is designed for the experienced HR professional. Online graduate students may choose from seven HR career tracks by selecting courses in specific concentrations. These specialized areas of study include benefits and compensation, employment and labor law, ethics and leadership, international human resources and employment relations, labor and collective bargaining, labor unions, and staffing and training. The program is delivered 100% online and allows students to balance their advanced education while working as an HR professional full time. Required courses include diversity in the workplace, ethical decision making for HR practitioners, labor market analysis, and seminars in employment relations and human resources. Penn State is ranked by major publications. In fact, U.S. News and World Report lists the school as the 47th best national university in the United States.

More information on Pennsylvania State University

#27 – Southern New Hampshire University

Online MS in Human Resource Management

Manchester, New Hampshire

Website

Graduate Tuition/Fees: $18,810

The affordable online master's in human resources program from Southern New Hampshire University aligns with the Society for Human Resource Management's guiding principles. Key strategies, ethical issues, and recruitment challenges are covered in classes taught entirely online by instructors with real-world HR experience. Required courses include corporate communications, human resources in global contexts, human resource information systems, strategic human resource management, and total rewards. Southern New Hampshire University is ranked by major publications like U.S. News and World Report. In fact, the 2016 edition of Best Colleges ranks the school as the 131st best regional university in the North and the #1 most innovative school.

More information on Southern New Hampshire University

#26 – Upper Iowa University

Online MBA in Human Resources Management

Fayette, Iowa

Website

Graduate Tuition/Fees: $17,964

Upper Iowa University offers an affordable master's online in human resources degree that combines business administration with HR management. Successful graduates earn an MBA with human resources management concentration. The program is entirely online and designed for professional students who work full-time but want to balance their education with life obligations. Students emphasizing their MBA studies in HRM receive peace of mind knowing that the program is certified by the Society for Human Resource Management. Upper Iowa is ranked by major publications like U.S. News and World Report. The online MBA programs have earned rankings in recent years, and the school is listed as a top regional university in the Midwest.

More information on Upper Iowa University

#25 – Nova Southeastern University

Online Master's in Human Resource Management

Fort Lauderdale, Florida

Website

Graduate Tuition/Fees: $31,200 (information provided by NSU).

Nova Southeastern University's M.B.A. in Human Resource Management online
program is designed to prepare industry professionals with advanced skills
and training. The MBA in Human Resource Management program is approved for
the Certification of Alignment with Society of Human Resource Management
(SHRM), up through December 31, 2019.

Completion time is just 21 months, although students have longer to finish
their degree as needed. The program begins five times throughout the year,
with start dates in August, October, January, March and May. Courses are
administered online and include career development, employee relations,
human resource development, human resource management technology and
tools, and managing organizational behavior in a dynamic and complex
world. Nova's online graduate business programs (excluding the MBA) rank
#78 in the country.

More information on Nova Southeastern University

#24 – Villanova University

Online Master's in Human Resource Development

Villanova, Pennsylvania

Website

Graduate Tuition/Fees: $17,219

Villanova University offers online degrees in human resources that are designed to equip individuals with the skills necessary to lead in the industry. For over 25 years, Villanova has offered HR degree programs. Successful completion of the online HR program earns an MS in human resource development. Required courses include employment law, human resource metrics and statistical research, human resource technology solutions, and organizational change management. Villanova is ranked with major publications like Forbes magazine, The Princeton Review, and U.S. News and World Report. In fact, U.S. News ranks the school as the #1 best regional university in the North and the #2 best value school. Online graduate business programs at Villanova rank #10 in the country.

More information on Villanova University

#23 – Creighton University

Online Master's in Negotiation and Conflict Resolution

Omaha, Nebraska

Website

Graduate Tuition/Fees: $16,664

For HR professionals looking for unique online master's degrees in human resources, Creighton University offers a highly specialized program. Students may earn an online MS in negotiation and conflict resolution by exploring curriculum that covers topics from legal problem solving to policy and principles related to conflict management. Required courses include dynamics of conflict resolution, facilitation and group processes, introduction to negotiation and conflict resolution, leadership and conflict engagement, and organizational collaborative practice and conflict resolution. Creighton is ranked #1 among regional universities in the Midwest by U.S. News and World Report. Additional rankings include #2 among best value schools, #1 among best colleges for veterans, and #3 among most innovative schools.

More information on Creighton University

#22 – Notre Dame De Namur University

Online MPA in Human Resource Management

Belmont, California

Website

Graduate Tuition/Fees: $15,384

Notre Dame de Namur University offers an affordable master's online in human resources that focuses on public administration and HR management. Successful degree candidates earn an online MPA with human resources management concentration. Core courses include human resource management, leadership concepts, and public policy and administration. Required courses for the human resources management concentration include conflict management, labor and management relations, managing diversity, and recruitment – training and development. The university ranks #39 among the best regional institutions in the West, according to U.S. News and World Report. The institution is rooted in Catholic tradition and founded upon the values of the Sisters of Notre Dame de Namur.

More information on Notre Dame de Namur University

#21 – Colorado Technical University

MBA in Human Resource Management Online

Colorado Springs, Colorado

Website

Graduate Tuition/Fees: $13,731

Colorado Technical University offers an online master's in human resource management program that combines a traditional MBA with HR concentration. The program is designed for professionals who want to pursue career advancement in the management field. Courses specific to HR include current legal issues in human resource management, management organizational development and change, and operational human resource management. Business administration required courses include leadership and ethical decision-making, strategic human capital management, and strategic management in dynamic environments. The university has received recognition from U.S. News and World Report as having one of the best online MBA programs. In fact, the 2016 edition of Best Colleges ranks Colorado Tech's online MBA programs #148 in the nation.

More information on Colorado Technical University

#20 – Stony Brook University

Online MS in Human Resource Management

Stony Brook, New York

Website

Graduate Tuition/Fees: $12,421

Stony Brook University offers an accredited master's in human resources online that is designed to enhance career opportunities for successful graduates. Curriculum combines theory and practice within the context of the always-changing field of human resource administration. Requirements include courses in employee learning and professional development, human relations and workforce planning, organizational development and change management, and performance management in organizations. Stony Brook is a nationally ranked institution by major publications like U.S. News and World Report. In fact, the 2016 edition of Best Colleges ranks the school as the 89th best national university and the 37th top public school. The online graduate business programs (excluding the MBA) rank #41 in the country.

More information on Stony Brook University

#19 – Webster University

Online Master's in Human Resources Management

St. Louis, Missouri

Website

Graduate Tuition/Fees: $12,300

Webster University offers an online master's in human resources management degree program designed to prepare HR professionals to address challenges in today's workforce. The program is accredited by the Accreditation Council for Business Schools and Programs, and administered entirely online. Required courses include basic finance for managers, employment law, integrated studies in human resources management, organizational behavior, and training and development. Webster University is regionally ranked by major publications like U.S. News and World Report. In fact, U.S. News lists the institution as the 26th best regional university in the Midwest and the 23rd best college for veterans. The school's online graduate business programs (including HR) rank #73 in the nation.

More information on Webster University

#18 – University of Louisville

Online MS in Human Resources and Organization Development

Louisville, Kentucky

Website

Graduate Tuition/Fees: $11,866

The University of Louisville offers an online master's degree in human resources and organization development that may be completed entirely via distance learning. All classes meet via live synchronous sessions at designated dates and times (generally in the evening). Online lecture materials are available anytime through the school's user-friendly platform. Three concentration areas are available for students to focus studies and hone specific interests. Concentrations include health professions education, human resource leadership, and workplace learning and performance. The University of Louisville is nationally ranked by major publications like U.S. News and World Report. In fact, the 2016 edition of Best Colleges ranks the school as the 168th best national university. The institution also ranks as the 501st best global university.

More information on University of Louisville

#17 – Central Michigan University

Online MBA in Human Resource Management

Mount Pleasant, Michigan

Website

Graduate Tuition/Fees: $11,770

Central Michigan University offers a master's in human resources online that incorporates business administration with HR management. Successful candidates earn an MBA with human resource management concentration. Degree requirements include courses in employee selection and evaluation, human resource management, managing information systems in a global economy, and organizational development. Central Michigan University is ranked by major publications like U.S. News and World Report. In fact, the 2016 edition of Best Colleges lists the school as the 194th best national university and the 111th top public school. The online MBA programs rank #36 in the country.

More information on Central Michigan University

#16 – Colorado State University

Online M.Ed. in Education and Human Resource Studies

Fort Collins, Colorado

Website

Graduate Tuition/Fees: $11,357

Colorado State University's online degrees in human resources include the Master of Education in Education and Human Resource Studies program. The program focuses on human resource training and development through curriculum designed to equip students with skills necessary for improvement interventions, performance consulting, and workplace enhancement. Courses include action learning and inquiry, analyze workplace learning, establishing relations, human resource development, and plan and implement change interventions. Colorado State University is ranked by major publications like Forbes magazine and U.S. News and World Report. In the 2016 edition of Best Colleges, U.S. News lists the institution as the 127th best national university and the 61st top public school. The graduate education programs (including human resource studies) ranks #130 out of similar programs.

More information on Colorado State University

#15 – Brandman University

Online MS in Human Resources

Irvine, California

Website

Graduate Tuition/Fees: $11,220

Brandman University offers a program designed for those interested in pursuing an online master's in human resource management that is both flexible and affordable. The program consists of three segments: a 24-credit core, a 9-credit elective area, and a capstone course. Required courses include conflict and negotiation, human resources systems, legal issues in human resources, organizational research, recruitment and selection, and training and development. The capstone course may be taken after certain class requirements are fulfilled, generally late in the student's academic career. The capstone focuses on strategic management in human resources. Brandman has earned recognition from U.S. News and World Report as having the 59th best online graduate business programs (including HR) in the nation.

More information on Brandman University

#14 – Herzing University

Online MBA in Human Resources

Madison, Wisconsin

Website

Graduate Tuition/Fees: $11,170

One of the more affordable online master's in human resources is found at Herzing University. The school offers an MBA with human resource management concentration that may be completed entirely online. Core courses include leadership foundations, managerial foundations, and research methods and decision-making. A total of 9 semester credit hours are required for the HR concentration area. These courses include business and labor law, compensation and rewards management, and human resource management. Herzing is a regionally ranked institution. According to U.S. News and World Report, the school has earned recognition as ranking among the top regional colleges in the Midwest. Additional rankings include the school's online bachelor's programs and the online MBA program. In fact, the online MBA program ranks #126 in the nation.

More information on Herzing University

#13 – University of Scranton

Master's in Human Resources Online

Scranton, Pennsylvania

Website

Graduate Tuition/Fees: $11,162

Students interested in earning an accredited online master's in human resource management can find affordable options at the University of Scranton. Rooted in Jesuit traditions, the University of Scranton offers an online MS in human resources program that is designed to equip students with the necessary skills to advance their careers in HR. Courses include control and budgeting systems, employee and labor relations, ethics in human resources, recruitment and staffing, strategic planning, and workplace learning and performance. The university has received several recognitions and rankings from major publications like Forbes magazine, The Princeton Review, and U.S. News and World Report. In fact, U.S. News ranks the institution as the 8th best regional university in the North and the 15th best value school.

More information on University of Scranton

#12 – Florida International University

Online Master's in Human Resource Management

Miami, Florida

Website

Graduate Tuition/Fees: $11,097

Florida International University offers a master's in human resources online degree program designed for working HR professionals. The 12-month program prides itself in flexibility and convenient scheduling options. Students take classes online and in the comfort of their own home. Required courses include critical thinking in human resource management, employment law and human resource management, high involvement human resource management, HR strategy and planning, and labor issues and conflict management. Florida International is ranked by major publications like U.S. News and World Report. The school's online graduate business programs, which include human resources management, rank #30 in the nation.

More information on Florida International University

#11 – Lasell College

Online MS in Management – Human Resources Management

Newton, Massachusetts

Website

Graduate Tuition/Fees: $10,870

Lasell College offers affordable online degrees in human resources that combine management with HR studies. The program includes 36 credits of coursework, including management and human resources management curriculum. A capstone internship or research project is also required. Core management courses include financial management, marketing management, and operations strategy. Concentration courses include human resource law, human resources management, negotiations and conflict resolution. Lasell College is regionally ranked, according to U.S. News and World Report. In fact, U.S News lists the school as the 26th best regional college in the North and the 20th best college for veterans. The online graduate business programs (excluding MBA) rank #86 in the nation.

More information on Lasell College

#10 – Regis University

Online MS in Organization Leadership – Human Resource Management & Leadership

Denver, Colorado

Website

Graduate Tuition/Fees: $10,800

Regis University offers an online master's in human resources degree program that emphasizes organizational leadership and HR management. Successful graduates earn an MS in organization leadership with a specialization in human resource management and leadership. Required core courses include leading change and innovation, making decisions in organizations, and strategic management and financial reports analysis. Specialization courses include employment law and compliance, strategic human resource management, and strategies in compensation and benefits. The capstone requirement includes a course in leading responsible organizations. Regis University ranks #28 among the best regional universities in the West, according to U.S. News and World Report. Additional rankings in the 2016 edition of Best Colleges include #82 for best online graduate business programs.

More information on Regis University

#9 – University of Saint Mary

Online MBA in Human Resources Management

Leavenworth, Kansas

Website

Graduate Tuition/Fees: $10,710

The University of Saint Mary offers an online MBA degree with human resources management concentration. The program is designed for business and HR professionals who want to transition to higher human resource management roles. The program may be completed in one year with classes delivered entirely online. Nine core courses are required in the HR concentration. Classes include conflict management and negotiation, legal and ethical environment of business, and organizational change and development. University of Saint Mary has earned recognitions and rankings from major publications like U.S. News and World Report. In fact, the school ranked among tier 2 best regional universities in the Midwest. The online MBA programs have also earned recognition.

More information on University of Saint Mary

#8 – Grand Canyon University

Online MBA with Emphasis in Strategic Human Resource Management

Phoenix, Arizona

Website

Graduate Tuition/Fees: $10,124

Accredited master's in human resources online programs are often combined with graduate business degrees, designed to equip students with advanced skills in both business and HR management. Grand Canyon University offers an online MBA with emphasis in strategic human resource management. The degree program covers topics in accounting practices, leadership and organizations, and quantitative methods. Classes in human resources include designing HR for competitive advantage, leveraging human capital, and strategic management. Courses are typically eight weeks long with a total program requirement of 54 credits. Grand Canyon University is a regionally ranked institution. In fact, U.S. News and World Report lists the school as a tier 2 best regional university in the West.

More information on Grand Canyon University

#7 – Indiana Wesleyan University

Online Master's in Human Resource Management

Marion, Indiana

Website

Graduate Tuition/Fees: $9,700

Indiana Wesleyan University offers one of the most affordable online human resources degrees on our list. The MS-HRM program implements a biblical framework that guides interactions within the human resource role in the workplace. Required courses include applied management theory, decision-making and essential business communication, human resources management, labor management relations in the global HR environment, and strategic risk assessment. The program has flexible start dates and is offered entirely online. Indiana Wesleyan is ranked by major publications like U.S. News and World Report as the 30th best regional university in the Midwest. Additional rankings include #12 for best value schools and #25 for best colleges for veterans.

More information on Indiana Wesleyan University

#6 – Clemson University

Online Master of Human Resource Development

Clemson, South Carolina

Website

Graduate Tuition/Fees: $9,220

Clemson University offers an online master's degree in human resources that is designed to prepare graduates to serve as HR professionals in various sectors, including education, industrial, and business. Successful graduates of the program earn a master's in human resource development. Additional concentrations, like intercollegiate athletic leadership, are available. Curriculum is composed of various topics. Required courses include concepts of human resource development, evaluation of training and development, instructional systems design, needs assessment for education and industry, and research concepts and skills. Clemson is a highly ranked institution by major publications like Forbes magazine, The Princeton Review, and U.S. News and World Report. In fact, U.S. News ranks the school #61 among the best national universities.

More information on Clemson University

#5 – Wilmington University

Online MSM with Concentration in Human Resource Management

New Castle, Delaware

Website

Graduate Tuition/Fees: $8,042

Wilmington University's online degrees in human resources are offered through the school's College of Business. Students participating in the HR program may earn an online master's in management degree with a concentration in human resource management. Required courses cover business, human resources, and management topics. These courses include compensation and benefits, finance and accounting for managers, leadership development and change management, organization theory and design, and strategy in organizations. Wilmington University is a private institution, founded in 1967. The school maintains a low student-to-faculty ratio of 14:1 and has earned recognition from major publications like U.S. News and World Report.

More information on Wilmington University

#4 – Saint Mary's University of Minnesota

Online Master's in Human Resources

Winona, Minnesota

Website

Graduate Tuition/Fees: $7,884

Saint Mary's University of Minnesota offers an online master's in human resource management degree program that is designed to equip industry professionals with advanced skills and education. Program curriculum is aligned with the Society for Human Resource Management (SHRM) and embraces a holistic approach to learning HR. Required HR courses include developing human capital, employment law, human resource management strategy, internal consulting in human resources, labor relations, and organizational measurement and assessment issues in human resources. St. Mary's is ranked nationally by major publications like U.S. News and World Report. In fact, the 2016 edition of Best Colleges lists the school as the 180th best national university and the 143rd best college for veterans.

More information on Saint Mary's University of Minnesota

#3 – University of Houston

Online Master's in Human Resource Management

Houston, Texas

Website

Graduate Tuition/Fees: $7,488

The School of Business at the University of Houston – Clear Lake offers an affordable master's online in human resources. The university's business school is AACSB accredited, and the HR program has received distinction by the Society for Human Resource Management. The program is designed to equip students with advanced industry skills and leadership abilities to manage departments, teams, and workplace organizations. Required coursework includes compensation and benefits, employee selection, human resource management information systems, legal environment of human resource management, and teamwork skills. The institution is ranked by U.S. News and World Report as the 81st best regional university in West and the 32nd top public school.

More information on University of Houston 

#2 – Western Carolina University

Online Master's in Human Resources

Cullowhee, North Carolina

Website

Graduate Tuition/Fees: $7,065

Western Carolina University's online master's in human resources degree program is offered through the school's College of Education and Allied Professionals. The program started in 1984 and has expanded to offer online services over the years. Today, the MSHR program is considered a "best buy" from GetEducated.com, and the school has earned recognition from major publications. Required HR master's degree courses include employee and labor relations, human resource development, and orientation to human resources. Popular elective courses, as listed on the program website, include legal issues in human resources, performance management, staffing, and talent management. U.S. News and World Report ranks Western Carolina as the 32nd best regional university in the South.

More information on Western Carolina University

#1 – University of Texas at Tyler

Online Master's in Human Resource Development

Tyler, Texas

Website

Graduate Tuition/Fees: $6,142

The University of Texas at Tyler (UT Tyler) offers an affordable online master's in human resource development that is designed for individuals wanting to advance in HR careers. The program requires no thesis; however, coursework and research projects are mandatory. Self-paced courses are delivered entirely online and include topics such as career development in the organization, learning and human resource development, needs assessment, and task analysis. The institution ranks with major publications like U.S. News and World Report. In fact, UT Tyler is ranked #73 for best regional universities in the West and the 27th top public school. UT Tyler hits the #1 spot on our list of the most affordable online master's degree programs in human resources.

More information on University of Texas at Tyler

Additional Rankings

This concludes our ranking of the top 30 most affordable online master's in human resources degree programs for 2016.

By GSH Staff
August 2016