Managers brainstorming at a whiteboard
Course type
Masters degree
Credits
180

Credits

  • Credits measure the student workload required for the successful completion of a module or qualification.
  • One credit represents about 10 hours of study over the duration of the course.
  • You are awarded credits after you have successfully completed a module.
  • For example, if you study a 60-credit module and successfully pass it, you will be awarded 60 credits.
How long it takes
2 – 7 years
Read more about how long it takes
Study method
Distance learning
Course cost
Postgraduate loan available
See Fees and funding
Entry requirements
Find out more about
Entry requirements

MBA (Master of Business Administration)

Course code: F61

Our internationally recognised MBA is a unique distance learning qualification that will build and develop your business skills. You'll be able to critically assess multiple perspectives and start applying your new understanding of management as you study. Designed for practising senior and middle-level managers, it will develop your strategic analysis, interdisciplinary skills, creativity and innovation. With an international emphasis and global reputation, our MBA programme is highly attractive for all ambitious executives.

  • Our triple-accredited status puts us in an elite group of business schools in the world.
  • Practice-based learning brings your MBA to life in your workplace.
  • Flexible options enable you to adjust the curriculum to suit your needs. 
  • Strong international emphasis essential for developing leaders in a global marketplace. 
  • Join an influential network of more than 28,000 alumni from 120 countries when you graduate.

Watch this video for key details on our MBA programme's structure, content, study methods, and funding options.

Course type
Masters degree
Credits
180

Credits

  • Credits measure the student workload required for the successful completion of a module or qualification.
  • One credit represents about 10 hours of study over the duration of the course.
  • You are awarded credits after you have successfully completed a module.
  • For example, if you study a 60-credit module and successfully pass it, you will be awarded 60 credits.
How long it takes
2 – 7 years
Read more about how long it takes
Study method
Distance learning
Course cost
Postgraduate loan available
See Fees and funding
Entry requirements
Find out more about
Entry requirements

How to register

Select the module you will study first, read the full description, and follow the instructions to register.

Modules

There are two routes to the MBA depending on when you start your studies.

November 2019 onwards route

If you start this year or have started with B870 in November 2019 or thereafter, including if you've previously studied any electives on a standalone basis, you'll need:

105 credits from the following: 

Compulsory modules Credits Next start
Managing in a changing world (B870)

This module challenges existing assumptions about managing and will develop your theoretical and practical knowledge of how to manage in a modern dynamic environment.

See full description

Register
30 04 May 2024
Creating and sustaining value (B872)

This module allows you to critically explore the ways organisations create, sustain and expand value in an increasingly complex and dynamic business environment.

See full description

Register
30 04 May 2024
Effective strategic management in business and the public sector (B873)

This module provides the necessary tools to become an effective strategic decision-maker.

See full description

Register
30 04 May 2024
Finance for strategic decision-making (B874)

You will learn a range of accounting and data analysis techniques to enable you to use financial information and other data for making management decisions.

See full description

Register
15 04 May 2024

plus 45 credits from the following:

Optional modules and microcredentials Credits Next start
Contemporary issues in organisations (BB853)

This module will help you become a knowledge leader by demonstrating that you’re ahead of current organisational and business challenges.

See full description

Register
15 02 Nov 2024
Entrepreneurship in context (BB851)

This module will equip you with an entrepreneurial mindset and help you learn about entrepreneurship and different forms of entrepreneurial practice.

See full description

Register
15 02 Nov 2024
Leadership and management of public services (BB852)

In this module, you’ll study the many dimensions of managing public services, which may be public, private for-profit or not-for profit.

See full description

Register
15 04 May 2024
Supply chain management (BB849)

This module provides an analysis of important concepts and practices in supply chain management, taking into account issues such as globalisation, sustainability and risk management.

See full description

Register
15 04 May 2024
Sustainable creative management (BB842)

This module explores creative, innovative and sustainable ways of developing and managing organisations and offers practical approaches for developing yourself, your team and your organisation.

See full description

Register
15 04 May 2024
Business, human rights and corporate social responsibility (W822)

This module examines the nature of corporate commitment to principles of corporate social responsibility in different contexts and its inter-relationship with human rights law.

See full description

Register
30 02 Nov 2024 FINAL
 Management of change: organisation development and design (BZFM802)* 15 11 Mar 2024
 Management of uncertainty: leadership, decisions and action (BZFM801)* 15 11 Mar 2024 

Or the discontinued modules BB841, BB844, BB845, BB846, BB847, BB848, BXM871.

*These microcredentials are 10–12 week professional development courses presented on FutureLearn. Learn more about each microcredential and explore how they can count towards OU qualifications, including the MBA (F61).

plus 30 credits from the following:

Compulsory module Credits Next start
MBA project: leaders of change (B875)

You’ll have the opportunity to make a real change and leaders of change as you become a reflective and independent practitioner by exploring a real business environment.

See full description

Register
30 04 May 2024

Hybrid route

If you have gained 60 credits from completing either of the discontinued modules B716 or BXFT716 you'll need:

30 credits from the following:

Compulsory module Credits Next start
Effective strategic management in business and the public sector (B873)

This module provides the necessary tools to become an effective strategic decision-maker.

See full description

Register
30 04 May 2024

Or, subject to the rules about excluded combinations, the discontinued module BB835.

plus 15 credits from the following: 

Compulsory module  Credits Next start
Finance for strategic decision-making (B874)

You will learn a range of accounting and data analysis techniques to enable you to use financial information and other data for making management decisions.

See full description

Register
15 04 May 2024

Or the discontinued module BB831.

plus 45 credits from the following:

Optional modules and microcredentials Credits Next start
Contemporary issues in organisations (BB853)

This module will help you become a knowledge leader by demonstrating that you’re ahead of current organisational and business challenges.

See full description

Register
15 02 Nov 2024
Entrepreneurship in context (BB851)

This module will equip you with an entrepreneurial mindset and help you learn about entrepreneurship and different forms of entrepreneurial practice.

See full description

Register
15 02 Nov 2024
Leadership and management of public services (BB852)

In this module, you’ll study the many dimensions of managing public services, which may be public, private for-profit or not-for profit.

See full description

Register
15 04 May 2024
Supply chain management (BB849)

This module provides an analysis of important concepts and practices in supply chain management, taking into account issues such as globalisation, sustainability and risk management.

See full description

Register
15 04 May 2024
Sustainable creative management (BB842)

This module explores creative, innovative and sustainable ways of developing and managing organisations and offers practical approaches for developing yourself, your team and your organisation.

See full description

Register
15 04 May 2024
Business, human rights law and corporate social responsibility (W822)

This module examines the nature of corporate commitment to principles of corporate social responsibility in different contexts and its inter-relationship with human rights law.

See full description

Register
30 02 Nov 2024 FINAL
 Management of change: organisation development and design (BZFM802)* 15 11 Mar 2024
 Management of uncertainty: leadership, decisions and action (BZFM801)* 15 11 Mar 2024 

Or, subject to the rules about excluded combinations, the discontinued modules BB841, BB844, BB845, BB846, BB847, BB848, BXM871.

*These microcredentials are 10–12 week professional development courses presented on FutureLearn. Learn more about each microcredential and explore how they can count towards OU qualifications, including the MBA (F61).

plus 30 credits from the following:

Compulsory module Credits Next start
MBA project: leaders of change (B875)

You’ll have the opportunity to make a real change and leaders of change as you become a reflective and independent practitioner by exploring a real business environment.

See full description

Register
30 04 May 2024

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.

Details of the Final Study in May 2020 route, which is no longer available to new students, can be seen below in the qualification regulations.


Learning outcomes, teaching and assessment

The learning outcomes of this qualification are described in four areas:

  • Knowledge and understanding
  • Cognitive skills
  • Practical and professional skills
  • Key skills
Read more detailed information about the learning outcomes.

Credit transfer

If you’ve successfully completed some relevant postgraduate study elsewhere, you might be able to count it towards this qualification, reducing the number of modules you need to study. You should apply for credit transfer as soon as possible, before you register for your first module. For more details and an application form, visit our Credit Transfer website.


On completion

On successfully completing this course, we’ll award you our Master of Business Administration. You’ll be entitled to use the letters MBA (Open) after your name.

If your masters degree is awardable with a distinction or a merit, the qualification regulations explain how you can achieve these.

You’ll have the opportunity to attend a degree ceremony.

Regulations

As a student of The Open University, you should be aware of the content of the qualification-specific regulations below and the academic regulations that are available on our Student Policies and Regulations website. 


We regularly review our curriculum; therefore, the qualification described on this page – including its availability, its structure, and available modules – may change over time. If we make changes to this qualification, we’ll update this page as soon as possible. Once you’ve registered or are studying this qualification, where practicable, we’ll inform you in good time of any upcoming changes. If you’d like to know more about the circumstances in which the University might make changes to the curriculum, see our Academic Regulations or contact us. This description was last updated on 14 March 2023.

You’ll be eligible for our MBA by satisfying the following academic, work experience and language requirements.

Academic requirements
There are three ways to meet the academic requirements:

1: Bachelors degree with honours
You'll need to have a bachelors degree with honours awarded by a UK university or equivalent.

2: Bachelors degree without honours
You'll need to have a bachelors degree without honours awarded by a UK university or equivalent and you'll need to have completed one of the following:

  • the discontinued OU module Managing 1: organisations and people (B628)
  • three of our undergraduate-level Business Management microcredentials*
  • the GMAT examination and achieved a result of 640 or higher.

3: No Bachelors degree
If you don’t have a bachelors degree you'll need to have completed one of the following;

  • the discontinued OU Professional Certificate in Management (S01)
  • six of our undergraduate-level Business Management microcredentials*

*See our Microcredentials page for further information.

Work experience requirement
You’ll need to have gained a minimum of three years’ experience in a managerial, technical or professional role, so that you have a practical business base on which to build your MBA learning.

Language requirement
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.

Acceptance onto the MBA programme
You’ll be required to show how you meet these requirements. You will be asked to submit your CV and proof of qualifications, including English translations of non-UK degrees. Evaluation of the evidence will take place before you’re accepted onto the programme.

If you would like to discuss making an application and require further information, please call The Open University Business School information line on +44 (0)300 303 0065. Lines are open (UK time): Monday to Friday 08:00 to 17:30.

How long it takes

Most students study this qualification in three years by studying 60 credits a year. To achieve this you should expect to devote 12 – 14 hours each week to your studies. You can however study certain modules concurrently depending on your study intensity and complete within two years. This will require you to be able to devote 24 – 28 hours each week to your studies.  

Career relevance

The Open University Business School is one of an elite group of schools that are accredited by the three leading international accrediting bodies - AACSB, AMBA, EQUIS - hallmarks of quality of teaching, learning materials and qualification impact. It is home to more than 28,000 successful MBA graduates representing 120 countries.

OUBS Logo





Employers value the MBA as an indication of high level business and management skills. These skills are in demand, increasingly so in times of economic uncertainty, and employers want practical experience, a thorough grasp of business and the ability to lead at a strategic level. Much of the work in this qualification involves an evidenced-based approach, thus ensuring relevance in the workplace. AMBA’s careers survey shows that MBA students can expect their salary to increase, and the MBA to have a positive impact on their career progression, as well as bring improvements to their organisation or business.

Recognised by the Chartered Institute of Logistics and Transport in the UK – CILT(UK)

CILT-logo.jpg

The Chartered Institute of Logistics and Transport in the UK (CILT(UK)) recognises our MBA if the modules in Supply chain management (BB849) and Sustainable creative management (BB842) are studied. This means successful students can demonstrate the sector-specific skills and knowledge to the standards required of a Chartered Member with CILT(UK).

Endorsed by the NHS Leadership Academy (NLA)

NLA Logo
The NLA appointed the Open University Business School to deliver the NHS Masters in Business Administration (MBA) programme.

For more careers information

Careers and Employability Services have more information on how OU study can improve your employability.

Request your prospectus

Our prospectuses help you choose your course, understand what it's like to be an OU student and register for study.

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