Master of Business Administration (MBA or M.B.A.)
and related Master Programs in Business Studies and Management

Business schools in many countries offer programs tailored to full-time, part-time, executive (coursework typically occurring on evenings and/or weekends), and distance learning students, many with concentrations. The core courses in an MBA program cover various areas of business such as accounting, finance, marketing, human resources, and operations in a manner most relevant to management analysis and strategy. During the last decades, many new Master programs emerged which specialized on one certain topic, such as Real Estate or Supply Chain Management, Marketing, Brand Management, and other Business areas.

Full-Time Master programs normally take place over two academic years (i.e. approximately 18 months of term time). For example, in the Northern Hemisphere, they often begin in late August/September of year one and continue until May of year two, with a three- to four-month summer break in between years one and two. Students enter with a reasonable amount of prior real-world work experience and take classes during weekdays like other university students. A typical full-time, accelerated, part-time or modular MBA requires 60 credits (600 class hours) of graduate work.

The degree culminates with coursework in business strategy. A dissertation or major project is usually a degree requirement after the completion of coursework. Topics in business ethics may also be included. For Executive MBAs (EMBAs), the curriculum is generally similar. Many Master programs end with a comprehensive exit examination.

Popular MBA & Master Programs in Business Studies and Management

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Accreditation

Business school or MBA program accreditation by external agencies provides students and employers with an independent view of the school or program's quality, as well as whether the curriculum meets specific quality standards. Within the USA, the three major accrediting bodies are:

Accreditation agencies outside the United States include the Association of MBAs (AMBA), a UK-based organization that accredits MBA, DBA and MBM programs worldwide, government accreditation bodies such as the All India Council for Technical Education (AICTE), which accredits MBA and Postgraduate Diploma in Management (PGDM) programs across India. Some of the leading bodies in India that certify MBA institutions and their programs are the All India Council for Technical Education (AICTE) and the University Grants Commission (UGC).

Triple accreditation

Triple accreditation (or Triple Crown accreditation) is the accreditation awarded to 76 business schools worldwide as of July 2016 by the three largest and most influential business school accreditation associations:

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    AACSB - The Association to Advance Collegiate Schools of Business (based in Tampa, Florida, with an Asia office in Singapore)
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    AMBA - The Association of MBAs (based in London)
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    EQUIS - European Quality Improvement System (based in Brussels

Of about 13,670 schools offering business degree programs worldwide, only 70+ had triple accreditation by the end of 2016.

Career prospects

An MBA prepares individuals for many types of careers. Some of the more common jobs an MBA prepares one for include:

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    Business analyst or strategist
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    Business development analyst, associate, or manager
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    Director (of a department)
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    Entrepreneur/founder
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    Financial analyst
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    Management consultant
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    Marketing associate, analyst, or manager
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    Portfolio manager
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    Project, product, or program manager
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    Operations analyst, associate, or manager

Further general information about structures, contents, program rankings and national differences of MBA programs can be found here.

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