Master in Business Administration

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  • Academic Title
    Master in Business Administration
  • Course description

    Programme details

    Our rigorous and practical curriculum gives you time to study immersed in an outstandingly international environment.  First year core courses provide students with the knowledge and frameworks of general management, while our wide elective portfolio makes the second year one of choice, allowing you to really differentiate yourself.  Keep your options open, or choose a concentration from one of six subject areas.

    -Reciprocal elective enrolment with University College London will allow you access to a selection of science and technology and real estate electives.

    Not every effective business leader develops from the same point.  Recent innovations focus on supporting your individual development needs through increased choice, flexibility and speed.

    -Course waivers for students who already have substantial competence in economics, accounting, statistics or information technology 
    -Flexible credit requirements allow you to take a minimum of 9 and a maximum of 12 elective courses. 

    Both these options increase the versatility of your personal programme – by enabling you to take an additional elective course in another area of interest, or to complete your class room studies early, possibly by December of your second year.

    Our MBA is not purely about knowledge, it is also about developing the skills you need to become a global leader. 

    -We have allocated twice as much time to our highly successful Global Leadership Development Programme, allowing you the opportunity for more meaningful skills development and broader access to our portfolio. 
    -The core Career Skills module will help you devise a realistic career strategy and prepare more thoroughly for interviews and handling offers of employment.
    -Each of these courses count for one credit.

    Core courses and required curriculum outlines 

    Business Statistics

    Business decisions are often too complex and involve too great uncertainty to be made by intuition alone. Understanding the uncertainty with the support of data and other quantitative information can be crucial for decision making in order to clarify the available options, develop insights and support analyses.  This will increase your understanding of topics such as corporate risk, market research and forecasting, concepts that are encountered later in the MBA programme. The emphasis throughout the course is on concepts and reasoning, rather than technical detail. You should acquire, or reacquire, some basic skills in data analysis, but more importantly, become a more informed and critical user of business statistical analyses. You should become more confident in asking tough questions on the quantitative work done, for example by market researchers, consultants and financial analysts.

    The topics to be covered, with a specific business focus, include:

    -Descriptive statistics and probability distributions, such as normal and binomial
    -Analysis of sample data, including estimation, confidence intervals and hypothesis testing
    -Detecting relationships in data and building regression models
    -Covariance, correlation and statistics of portfolio analysis.

    Career and Professional Skills Development Programme (CPSDP)

    It is no good knowing things.  You need to have the skills to apply your knowledge.  The Career and Professional Skills Development Programme provides opportunities for you to :

    - Get to know yourself better

    - Develop your personal and professional skills in four key areas:

    Yourself as leader and team member eg.
        - personal impact
        - assertiveness
        - conflict management
        - emotional intelligence
    Solving complex cross disciplinary business problems eg.
        - creative thinking
        - strategic problem solving
        - negotiating strategic transactions
    Communication eg.
        - high impact presentations
        - business writing
        - public speaking
    Career skills eg.
        - interview skills
        - networking
        - work/life balance
    There are over 40 courses to choose from.  

    Decision and Risk Analysis

    Important decisions cannot be left to intuition alone.  We need to have a structure to our reasoning, be able to defend it to adversarial challenges and make presentations that show we have done a thorough analysis.  We also need to make sense of various sources of data, organise the inputs of experts and colleagues, and use state-of-the-art business software to provide analytical support to our reasoning.

    To equip you to be more effective in these tasks is the overall objective of this course.  The emphasis is not on the quantitative aspects, but on the qualitative insights that come from using models to aid managerial thinking and decision-making.

    You will be equipped with specific skills in the areas of:-

    -Data analysis
    -Structuring decisions
    -Building decision models
    -Risk assessment
    -Decision making under uncertainty
    -Business simulation
    -Project evaluation
    -Resource management
    -Recognising the areas where business analysis can add value
    -Selecting appropriate types of analyses and applying them in a small-scale and quick turnaround fashion
    -Capital budgeting & portfolio management
    -Using software tools for structuring, analysing and supporting decisions.

    The course is multi-disciplinary in nature and links to a number of other areas including finance, operations management, marketing and accounting through the choice of cases, thus adding an analytical dimension to the teaching of these areas. 

    Discovering Entrepreneurial Opportunities

    Discovering Entrepreneurial Opportunities (DEO) is a core course that seeks to provide first-year MBA students with the skills, tools, and mindsets to enable them to discover opportunities upon which entrepreneurial ventures may be built, whether as start-ups or in established firms.

    This course also seeks to build students' real-world business sense, and develop their presentation skills and their abilities to persuasively articulate, from both whole firm and customer perspectives, a point of view about a business problem that needs to be resolved. It will give each student an opportunity to prepare and deliver a short presentation to the class, drawing on what has been discovered in his or her team's project work to date. And it will give each student numerous opportunities to challenge and debate the merits and limitations of different points of view held by fellow students and the instructor about what decisions should be made – and why – in the cases we will discuss, all of which will require that a decision be reached.

    As will become clear as the course unfolds, discovery and decision-making skills are fundamental capabilities for any manager who seeks to 'do things differently' in his or her organisation. Indeed, most new consultants and most MBA graduates find themselves, in their first position post-MBA, dropped into a setting where there are performance problems they are asked to resolve. Resolving them inevitably requires discovering customer, user, and/or business needs and discovering a suitable way forward to satisfy those needs. Thus, the discovery focus of this course should serve students having career interests of all kinds, not just those who plan to start new ventures. It should be noted, however, that recent data indicate that 80+ percent of graduates from top-tier MBA programmes find themselves involved in one way or another with entrepreneurial ventures within ten years of graduation. Thus, this course will also provide some preparation for students' eventual entry into the entrepreneurial world – and perhaps increase their tolerance for ambiguity, a helpful personal attribute for every entrepreneur – for those who have not yet experienced entrepreneurial phenomena already.
    Ethics and Corporate Social Responsibility

    London Business School was one of the first top Business Schools to introduce ethics to the core curriculum.

    This course helps prepare you to recognise and manage ethical issues as they arise, and to formulate your own standards of integrity and professionalism. 


    -Develop your understanding of the ethical responsibilities subsumed in becoming a professional manager
    -Make you more knowledgeable and comfortable with the central concepts, frameworks and theories of business ethics
    -Provide you with experience in applying these tools to a select number of the ethical issues that managers face in business
    -Improve individual and group skills in identifying and analysing these ethical issues
    -Including your skills in articulating (in groups, in class and in writing) the reasons for the best resolution of the ethical conflict/dilemma, and the action plan for its effective implementation
    -Provide an opportunity to reflect on and critically examine the values and assumptions brought to business decisions, both by yourself and by others.


    The objective of the Finance core course is to develop a framework for corporate financial decision-making and provide a solid grounding in the principles and practice of financial management.

    The course breaks down into three main sections:

    -Project Appraisal
    -This concerns the way in which investment projects are analysed, the impact of risk, tax and inflation, the term structure of interest rates, the cost of capital and target rates of return.
    -Capital Markets
    -This covers the operation of the capital markets, its efficiency, the role of intermediaries, sources of finance, the borrowing decision and company valuation and optimal portfolio allocation.
    -Capital Structure
    -This addresses the issue of the optical capital structure of firms, mergers and acquisitions and the market for corporate control, market efficiency, the principle of capital structure, gearing and the basics of hedging and international finance.

    Financial Accounting

    The purpose of the financial accounting course is to furnish students with a basic understanding of the financial reporting process (and in particular how financial statements are put together).  Although the course principally concentrates on the production of financial statements, the aim is not to turn participants into practising accountants; the philosophy is rather to provide an appreciation of the production process that is sufficiently detailed to give students the ability to successfully analyse a relatively complex set of financial statements.  This ability is essential for elective courses that deal with the analysis and interpretation of company financial statements in various contexts.  Additionally, the ability to extract relevant information from accounting data for the purpose of decision-making is an important skill that will often be used in a number of other courses. 

    Global Leadership Assessment for Managers (GLAM)

    London Business School's MBA is about developing people with the knowledge, skills and attributes to become global business leaders.  This course helps you bridge the gap which most people have between your understanding of new countries and cultures and your ability to lead others in culturally sensitive ways.  It will help you make a positive impact wherever you go.


    -To identify key interpersonal and teamwork skills needed in successful global business management (e.g., finding their own way to be assertive in a culturally sensitive way)
    -To share feedback on your own and others' interpersonal and teamwork skills
    -To observe and practise selected interpersonal skills necessary for cross-cultural leadership and teamwork
    -To understand the skills that underlie management and leadership effectiveness in the global business environment
    -To consider the need to adapt skills for different contexts
    -To develop personal and team action plans for the next year
    -To assess learning using a follow-up survey for cross-cultural team and interpersonal skill. 

    IT for Business Value

    Firms that effectively exploit IT out-perform others.  IT can play a major role in opening new distribution channels, streamlining supply chains and providing efficient electronic markets.  But many firms do not understand IT and do not manage it well.

    This course aims to:

    -Enhance your confidence in choosing the right technology for meeting business needs
    -Examine issues involved in managing the implementation of business systems.

    It covers managerial application and also helps you develop your understanding of the underlying technologies and the frameworks needed to successfully manage these. 
    The MBA Language Programme

    In the global economy, managers who are fluent in one or more languages are an increasingly important asset to their companies.  Knowledge of foreign languages plays a vital part in promoting communication and establishing contacts and can be key to securing a deal.  Arguably you cannot be a successful global business leader without knowing how to learn a new language.

    It is for this reason that London Business School requires its graduates to be competent in a language other than English. The Language Learning Programme provided by the Modern Language Centre, King's College London, is a key feature of the MBA course. 

    London Business School MBA students are required to reach Level 2 (Level 1 is Basic, Level 5 is fluent) in a language other than English by graduation.  To get to this level you can either:

    Study one of the languages offered as an elective course at London Business School
    Study independently
    Do a combination of the two to reach the required level.

    Studying a Language for Elective Credit

    As one of your elective courses, you can opt to take a language course at London Business School.  Currently the school offers electives at Level 1 - 4 in French, Spanish, German, Japanese and Mandarin, subject to student demand. Level 1 classes begin in terms 1 and 2, with other levels available in all other terms, subject to demand.

    It is advisable that you begin studying as early as possible. As with all electives, languages are run on a demand basis.  Therefore it is possible that there may not be an elective in the language you wish to study at the time you wish to take the course.  If this is the case you may wish to consider studying privately.

    If you meet the language exit requirement you are also free to take another language as an elective.

    Studying Languages Privately

    You should consider looking to take private tuition if:-

    a. You do not meet the entry standard for Level 2.

    b. You wish to reach the exit requirement in a language other than those taught at School.

    Management Accounting

    Building on the technical foundations of Financial Analysis, this course concentrates on the use of accounting for decision and control in the firm.  The first part seeks to develop the foundation of management accounting, namely understanding costs and costing and becoming proficient in cost analysis for decision-making.

    The second part of the course tackles accounting for control.  It is especially intended to deepen understanding of the processes, possibilities and limitations of management accounting, including budgetary control, divisional performance measurement and management planning and control systems.

    Managerial Economics

    This course teaches you how to apply economic reasoning with a primary focus on the needs of managers.

    The course is divided into two parts.  In the first part we cover traditional topics in microeconomics.  We start by explaining how markets work and how the price mechanism allocates resources.  We then review the profit drivers of the firm distinguishing revenue and cost drivers.

    The second part of the course studies the interactions among market players with an emphasis on firms' strategy.  Here, strategy is defined as being involved in decisions which affect your firm's performance not only directly but also by influencing the behaviour of others.  We will cover applications to pricing rivalry, barriers to entry, auctions and vertical integration.

    Course outline

    -Understanding Market Forces
    -The Meaning of Competition
    -Pricing and Profits
    -Market Power - Good or Evil?
    -Playing Games I – Competition versus Cooperation
    -Playing Games II – Entry and Exit
    -Firms versus Markets – Make or Buy?
    -Auctions and Market Design
    -Economics of Information  

    Managing Organisational Behaviour

    Leading individuals and groups effectively is the key to managerial excellence.  Yet, it could be your most difficult challenge as a manager.

    We designed this course to help you meet this challenge.  This course will achieve this objective in three ways. 

    First it will provide you with a framework for managing individual and group performance.  Second, it will help you understand and acquire critical leadership skills required to shape and manage the behaviour of people in organisations.  Third, through an intensive field project (the Organisation Audit) it will give you the opportunity to explore first hand the relevance and usefulness of the concepts and management practices discussed in class.

    This course is designed to:

    -Help you understand and manage individual and interpersonal behaviour in organisations
    -Help you manage groups for high performance, by providing you with conceptual knowledge experiential exercises on group dynamics and team building (along with practical insights into your skills as a team player and your impact on others)
    -Help you understand the challenges of leading and changing organisations.

    To accomplish these objectives, the course will include the following elements:

    -Exposure to essential theories and concepts for analysing managerial problems
    -Individual and group analysis of cases and experiential exercises
    -Exchange of ideas and experiences in the classroom
    -Intensive field-based project work in groups


    We all know what marketing involves.  Or do we?  This course looks at the main principles and constructs and help create sound marketing strategies and looks at the different challenges associated with implementing a marketing strategy.

    The course covers:

    -What marketing is – and more important, what it is not
    -Consumer research and consumer behaviour
    -Market segmentation and targeting
    -B2B marketing
    -Positioning Strategy
    -The Demand Chain
    -Value Pricing
    -Market Space
    -Marketing Planning
    -Global Marketing
    -The course climaxes with the 'Marketing Strategy' simulation.  You will become members of a fully functioning organisation and compete against each other in an extremely tough and highly realistic marketing simulation. 

    Operations & Technology Management

    Businesses have to deliver if they are to survive.  This course aims to:

    Develop an awareness of the main operational issues that arise in all business
    Show how effective management of operations is a major factor in business success
    Introduce you to key operations management approaches, including:
        - operations strategy
        - process analysis
        - use of data and managerial opinion

    This is a practical subject and involves cases, exercises and an international plant visit. 

    The Second Year Project

    The Second Year Project is a team based consultancy type exercise delivered for a client organisation. The project offers students the opportunity to apply in practice the knowledge they have acquired in the classroom, as well as gaining valuable business experience.

    Project themes are extremely wide ranging, cutting across many business functions and industries.  Past project sponsors have ranged from global corporations to start up operations, from private companies, to charities and NGOs.  The commonality, however, is that all these organisations have a significant, tangible business problem which is feasible to analyse and evaluate.  Ultimately it must also be challenging for the students.

     - Terms of work 

    Students work in small teams of two or three on a paid consulting basis, negotiating the terms and timetable with the client. Students must complete their projects by the end of April of their second year of study to meet the academic deadline. Each student will usually undertake approximately 25-30 days work.

    Most project timetables are spread over a two to four month period although this is dependant on the clients' needs. Students have time factored into the academic schedule to allow them to work on the project whilst still participating in their studies. Students will usually conclude their client work with an oral presentation in addition to a written report. A full project report must also be submitted to the School for grading.

    Strategic Problem Solving

    This core course provides a framework for making and communicating complex decisions more effectively. It is particularly relevant for improving performance in group projects both at the School and in subsequent careers, but is also highly relevant for case analysis in job interviews as well as in daily class discussion.


    This core course deals with the craft of strategy; that is, how to identify and choose a superior competitive position, how to analyse a strategic situation, and finally how to create the organisational context to make the chosen strategy work.


    -To explore conceptual frameworks and models which will assist you to analyse competitive situation and strategic dilemmas and gain insight into strategic management
    -To help you acquire practical experience in dealing with strategic issue.

    To achieve this we start with an analysis of the external competitive environment, looking at industry structure and value chain dynamics and assess how a firm can select the best position within this environment. 

    We then move to an analysis of firm resources and capabilities and look at the firm's resource system, and examine the challenge of coordinating the pieces of the puzzle that underpin corporate success.

    Tying these insights together, a two-session simulation gives you a hands-on feel of what strategy making is about, and helps you think through the implications of your decisions.

    We then turn to implementation, and the way in which the organisation enables us to put strategy into action. The course concludes with a session on the challenges of strategic management in a time of rapid technological change.

    Understanding General Management (UGM)

    Business has arguably replaced government, religion, and in many cases family as the social institution with the greatest influence on people's lives.

    Business managers and leaders therefore, play a pivotal role in promoting economic and social progress.

    This course highlights the professional challenges and responsibilities that you will face, and creates a road map to help you to navigate the twists and turns of the MBA Programme content.  For those whose future calling is to advise general managers as consultants or corporate financiers, or who may seek to shape their behaviour as regulators, this course will illuminate the nature of the challenges and pressures placed on the top business managers with whom you will be working.

    Topics include:

    -Introduction to General Management
    -Committing to the future
    -Framing the world
    -Managing through processes
    -Managerial values.
    Understanding the International Macroeconomy

    The purpose of this course is to familiarise you with the workings of the global economy.  We focus in particular on growth, trade, business cycles and monetary and fiscal policy, stressing the role that each of these elements plays in determining the financial health of corporations and nations.

    By the end of the course you should understand what determines the long run performance of an economy; the role of trade in influencing national wealth and corporate performance; the determinants of exchange rates and inflation; why business cycles occur and the principles and motivation underlying government economic policy.

    Topics will include:

    -Data and definitions
    -How does the economy grow?
    -Technological progress
    -Labour market, skills and unemployment
    -Fiscal policy
    -Money and inflation
    -Exchange rates
    -Business cycles
    -Monetary policy
    Elective portfolio

    Our flexible MBA Programme allows you:

    Course waivers for students who already have substantial competence in economics, accounting, statistics or information technology 
    Flexible credit requirements allow you to take a minimum of 9 and a maximum of 12 elective courses
    Reciprocal elective enrolment with University College London will allow you a selection of science and technology or real estate electives.

    These options increase the versatility of your personal programme - by enabling you to take an additional elective course in another area of interest, or to complete your degree early, possibly by December of your second year.

    Elective concentrations

    Keep your options open, or choose a concentration. The list below shows what is available to the current class.

    -Change management
    -Entrepreneurial management
    -International business
    -Private equity
    -Technology management
    -You will need to take five electives in a concentration area and you can count at least one exchange credit towards this.

    Another feature of the elective portfolio is that you will study alongside students from other London Business School Programmes and with visiting international exchange students. Thus, your network and learning opportunities will increase and you will be able to further refine your skills of group formation as you choose your study group for each of your individual electives.

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