Getting a Master’s degree in business administration fairly often quickly pays off, yet you need to be aware of a number of aspects prior to rushing to apply for a certain MBA program. In order to let you get the answers to the most frequent questions about the MBA without making much of an effort, we have compiled them into a single article here. Indeed, this piece will barely provide you with all the information you may need, yet you will get a clear understanding of what an MBA is, how to take advantage of it, and what do you need for that. Enjoy!
Table of Contents
- 1 What is an MBA?
- 2 What makes an MBA program different from other programs?
- 3 Are MBA programs more or less same at all business schools?
- 4 Are there any other types of MBA programs?
- 5 How to choose the most suitable business school or an MBA program?
- 6 Do accreditations for business schools exist?
- 7 What are the requirements for being eligible to apply for an MBA program?
- 8 What benefits will I receive for holding a degree of Master in Business Administration?
- 9 What is the cost of an MBA?
What is an MBA?
An MBA, which stands for Master’s in Business Administration, is a special program in such fields like operations management, strategy, marketing, human resources, and finance, designed to help students to get a better understanding of business processes. Even though it is usually considered that solely (or mostly) managers apply for an MBA, this is barely a truth. A lot of students who apply for MBA programs work as accountants, business analysts, and marketing experts. MBA is something that allows you to become more familiar with business in general. In order to get to know more information about what is an MBA, visit this page.
What makes an MBA program different from other programs?
The very first aspect that allows the MBA programs to stand out in comparison to other program is its mandatory work experience of at least two years – despite some extremely rare cases, this rule is a must. So, this program is based on the interaction between students, who possess work experience in various fields of business, in the first place. Moreover, a large network of alumni of certain business schools will stand in good stead for you, whenever you will need it.
Are MBA programs more or less same at all business schools?
Indeed, all Master’s business administration programs differ quite noticeably. For instance, on-campus MBA programs may significantly differ in a number of studying hours, beginning with 400 hours and ending with 2,200 working hours. Likewise, the prestige of a business school matters. Of course, the more prestigious is the business school you are studying your MBA at, the bigger will be the boost to your career, knowledge, a network of connections, and salary. After all, there are two main types of MBA programs: an Executive MBA and a normal MBA. The Executive MBA program is designed especially for the top and, in some cases, middle levels of corporate management and aimed to improve the level of the managerial qualities of such executives. Typically, a requirement of work experience of 5 years or more is a must for such programs. Another important factor, considered during the admission process, is what contribution the executive are able to make to the program.
Unlike the Executive MBA program, a normal MBA program is designed not solely for executives, but for almost all people engaged in business. By the way, there are also a large number of MBA programs specialized in certain business fields, like agriculture, consulting, technology, manufacturing, and other fields. If you will apply for a specialized MBA program that suits the field of business of yours, then the chances of getting more relevant knowledge are higher. In addition to that, companies from that field of business will value your MBA diploma more, too.
Are there any other types of MBA programs?
Indeed, the MBA programs are also divided into three different categories (even though you will master same knowledge and skills; it is going rather about the way how the learning process takes place): full-time, part-time, and online (distance learning) MBA programs. Full-time MBA programs are typical on-campus Master’s programs with a focus on business. Typically, you have to visit the campus studies, and the number of studying hours usually varies between 400 and 2,200 hours (depends on the business school you are enrolled in). There also may be some study tours, but the interaction between the students is a key in this process.
A part-time MBA program is essentially almost same as a full-time one, yet with less intense schedule, which typically makes such a program more prolonged. Also, usually the studies of the part-time MBA programs take places on Fridays and Saturdays in (or closer to) the evening time, which makes the process of studying more affordable in terms of time for busy people.
After all, there is also an online version of MBA. This means that a person can study this program and interact with lecturers and other students online. Here is a list of the best online MBA programs you may take advantage of. However, some MBA programs are not completely online, but partly blended, which means combining on-campus studying with distance learning. Also, such programs may include study tours that last a week or so.
An online MBA program allows you to get a high-quality education, yet save a pretty large sum of money
How to choose the most suitable business school or an MBA program?
As it was previously mentioned, you should think about the specialization of business you are working in and look for suitable business schools. Then, you can choose between the selected universities by using various rankings of MBA programs, such as topmba and the Financial Times. With the help of such rankings, you are able to get to know the actual prestige of a single university and the quality of its education. Also, make sure that the business school you are going to enroll in is also accredited (see below).
Do accreditations for business schools exist?
The accreditation of business schools is indeed an important matter, and, indeed, there are several respected bodies responsible for the accreditation. If a business school is accredited by one or several such bodies, it means that its prestige and the high quality of education are recognized. Therefore, you can be sure that your education will pay off and your diploma will be valued in your company.
So, there are three major international accrediting bodies for business schools: the Association of MBAs (AMBA), European Quality Improvement System (EQUIS), and the Association to Advance Collegiate Schools of Business. If the business school you have chosen is accredited by one or a few bodies mentioned above, you can be sure that the school is in a top tier.
What are the requirements for being eligible to apply for an MBA program?
Indeed, not any person is able to apply for a business administration program. First of all, you should have a Bachelor’s degree. Even if hold a degree in another major than business, skip your worries: it does not matter what major of your undergraduate studying was, even if it was physics or biology. The key is to be a bachelor graduate.
Then, keep in mind that for enrolling in an MBA program you must have a prior work experience of at least two years. In some business school, the administration requires to have even 6 or 7 years of working in business. That is why you should check how many years of work experience the business school you have chosen requires. Indeed, there may happen exceptions when people without a prior experience of work are accepted, but it happens very rarely and you should not expect to be so lucky.
Another important point is that you should have passed the Graduate Management Admissions Test, known simply as GMAT. This test measures your math, verbal, writing, and analytical skills. And even though in some cases this moment is skipped (if an applicant is a PhD or possesses a work experience of 10-15 years, for example), most business schools decide whether the applicant is enrolled or not by taking into account his/her GMAT score. Keep in mind that such business schools as the ones of Harvard and Stanford require the GMAT of 720-730 points.
What benefits will I receive for holding a degree of Master in Business Administration?
Indeed, having a degree in business administration not necessarily leads to another position in your company, yet in many cases the place of work gets changed to the better. Likewise, most employees who have received an MBA can expect the rise of a salary in the range between $10,000 and $30,000. However, there can be exceptions in both negative and positive sides.
What is more important is the fact that you will get acquainted with businesspeople from other companies, and those connections may well pay off in the future. Also, you will master the skills and knowledge in many fields of the business, such as marketing, management, supply chains, economics, finance, and accounting. This will give you more insight about how your company functions and what you are able to improve (visit this page).
What is the cost of an MBA?
Similar to the prestige of a business school, tuition fees vary significantly as well. In the most prestigious universities, such as Stanford, Harvard, or London Business School, the cost of an MBA program varies between $55,000 and $120,000. In particular, the tuition fees also depend on the type of an MBA program. Online MBA programs cost a way less than campus-based ones. Also, you can find accredited, high-quality business administration education in business schools of such countries like Mexico and India.