All entrants to the MBA are required to have a minimum of three years’ experience in a managerial, professional or technical role. Usually this means that you are at least 25 years old as it is unusual (but not impossible) to be able to satisfy the ‘experience’ requirement under this age.
Depending on your previous qualifications, there are a variety of routes into the MBA:
If you already hold an honours degree awarded by a recognised UK university, or equivalent you can begin your MBA studies by taking MBA stage 1: management: perspectives and practice (B716).
Various higher education and professional qualifications are considered equivalent to an honours degree. If you hold a qualification that you believe is an equivalent level to a UK honours degree please contact us. The Open University Business School Masters Programme Committee is responsible for judging whether applicants’ qualifications meet the requirements for admission.
If you are experienced in managerial work but do not have an honours degree or equivalent you need first to gain our Professional Certificate in Management (S01) (previously coded C31). This is also a valuable qualification in its own right.
If you have the equivalent of a UK bachelors degree without honours you may be permitted to progress on to the MBA course by taking the first part of the Professional Certificate in Management, Managing 1: organisations and people (B628). Alternatively if you have an official Graduate Management Admission Test (GMAT) score of 640 or above, and the equivalent of a UK undergraduate degree, you will be allowed to progress directly on to the MBA. If you think either of these possibilities may apply to you, please speak to an adviser.
Your spoken and written English must be of an adequate standard for postgraduate study. If English is not your first language, we recommend that you will need a minimum score of 6.5 under the International English Language Testing System (IELTS). Please see their website for details.
The MBA qualification is in two stages and typically takes three years to complete based on a regular study of 12-16 hours per week, which experience shows us is the practical limit for a full-time manager balancing study with career and family responsibilities. You are allowed up to a maximum of seven years to complete your MBA.
Stage 1 consists of the MBA stage 1: management: perspectives and practice (B716). This 60-credit module takes 12 months to complete. It is an integrated module covering all the core disciplines which make up the MBA curriculum. You must pass Stage 1 before proceeding onto Stage 2. If you have successfully completed either of the now discontinued modules B700 or B713 these can also be counted as Stage 1 of the MBA.
Your first Stage 2 module is The dynamics of strategy (BB835) followed by Corporate finance (BB831).
You then study 45 credits of optional (or 'elective') modules. Most of these elective modules are rated at 15 credits. Please note that the 30-credit module Business, human rights law and corporate social responsibility (W822) starts in November each year and that Business operations: delivering value (T883) is available for the last time in May 2015. If you take two 30-credit modules you can only count 45 credits towards your MBA.
To complete your MBA, you then take a 30-credit compulsory action-learning based project module, Making a difference: the management initiative (B839). This is typically undertaken in your own organisation (though this is not a requirement) which enables you to demonstrate your mastery of the art of management. Although you study this module last, you will find that preparation for it begins with your first module and is embedded throughout your MBA studies.
You should note that the University’s unique study rule applies to this qualification. This means that you must include at least 60 credits from OU modules that have not been counted in any other OU qualification that has previously been awarded to you.