Discussion in 'Education and Resettlement Courses' started by Tango, Jun 29, 2009.

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  1. Evening all,

    Been considering doing an OU course for the last year or so, and as such went to the OU Open Day at the weekend in Milton Keynes.
    The lady at the desk recommended looking more towards an MBA than a Bachelor's Degree. Having not heard much about MBAs before, and not actually knowing anyone with one, thought I'd ask on here what people's opinion is of them? Anyone completed the course? And finally, how much use will it be when/if I leave?

    Best wishes,

  2. Now you’ve torn it! Suspect this thread might run awhile…

    An MBA is a post-experience (have managed for a few years) general management degree notable for its ‘style of learning’ and ‘course ethos’ which differentiates it from other Masters courses.

    If you’ve lived a little then the MBA ‘classroom’ is your stage. A Bachelor’s allows you to keep your head down and churn out from the text book.

    Employee wise an OU MBA is very well respected and will at least get you onto job short lists of middle and senior ranking posts.

    It’s a controversial degree as it churns out graduates of differing qualities. But you’re safe with the OU. Also, few degrees encourage offer such a positive cohort environment for budding senior managers.
  3. Thanks for the quick reply, does an MBA 'count' for anything? By that I mean, that although I just have A-Levels, and no degree, will an MBA make me employable without having a degree?


    edited for ridiculous grammar.
  4. Unequivocally yes in many respects. The best performing MBA students are frequently those who have avoided the stultifying effects of a first degree and arrive suitably unsullied at their MBA course with the enthusiasm of a newly wed.
    The job spec of your future employer may well prefer a degree plus Masters but the savvy employer may like the prospect of your attendance on the short list as someone with some qualities not found in the ‘conventional’ hopeful.
    If you’re late 20s and above you might also find a BA a bit pedestrian intellectually but don’t burn yourself out if a BA is good prep plus thoroughly rewarding personally. Ignore my bleating freely.
  5. The Master of Business Administration (MBA) is a master's degree in business administration.
  6. Well, sort of... bit of a misnoma.
  7. Sorry, I had meant to put 'without having a bachelor's degree', late night etc!

    Ok BSL, thanks for the response, I need to have a bit more of a think about it. Just trying to make myself a bit more employable upon leaving.

    Again, thanks muchly.
  8. Any tertiary educashunal qualification is worthwhile. When putting bids together for business projects, the bidders normally list their collective qualifications and an MBA is viewed as very worthwhile. And as BSL says - it is actually a misnomenr as it can cover a multitude of disciplines - look on it a as a sort of Management Sciences type qualification.
  9. Apparently some MBAs are more equal than others. MBAs from the world-famous universities like Harvard, Yale and the LSE are all well-regarded, as is the one from the Open University apparently.
  10. msr

    msr LE

  11. An MBA is an excellent qualification and well worth the effort. However before you commit please check the costs as excellence doesn't come cheap.

    Good luck.

  12. I am two mouseclicks away from the OU MBA (B830 TMA03 and ECA to go in the jargon) after 3.5 years of study. I've used ELCs to pay for some of the study.

    I definitely made my employer's shortlist by virtue of being able to say 'MBA student' and I'd say that the training has made my job easier and played a part in my promotion(s). As to its value as a pure postnominal, I'd say this was mixed. It's no standalone arbiter of quality.

    It is most definitely a hard slog and at times an utter pain, frankly I'll be bloody glad when it is over. However I'd thoroughly recommend it and two of the six month modules are electives where it's possible to pick areas that interest you. By all means get in touch if you have any questions.
  13. Harvard's MBA has an average cohort age of 26 and is known for its case study based class room interaction (a bit of pose, pause, pounce that we'll know well)... I personally believe 26 is woefully too young to take an MBA and breeds the arrogance that is at the root of our current MBA led credit crunch. I don't believe this environment acknowledges complexity and uncertainty.

    What I'm encouraging is consider an MBA that has a diverse, reflective, balanced cohort rather than okay-yahs and hooray henrys fast tracking themselves into the City.

    Lancaster is a 'Management School' and is excellent due its excellent leadership centre and reflective ethos... but I'm biased! However your local Poly Uni. will still deliver value especially if they've been delivering their MBA for some time... you might not get a 4 star hotel but you'll get value.
  14. A couple of things to bear in mind:

    An MBA is the only Master's degree (apart from the Oxbridge ones that come up with the rations) that is considered equal to a bachelor's degree in terms of academic attainment.

    However, because of the strong business orientation, a decent MBA (and the reputation of different awarding bodies does vary very greatly, and not always in relation to their overall reputation) probably counts for more than a PhD in terms of getting a highly-paid job in management (although obviously you'll also need to look good in a suit, have management hair, and be comfortable both talking and listening to polysyllabic b0ll0cks).

    Doing any OU degree is a lot of work, and most employers fail to recognise the extra commitment, effort and interest that OU students typically display. It might actually be easier to look at a full-time course if you can swing it (and the Lancaster MBA does, justifiably, enjoy a very high reputation, one of the best in the UK).

    Anyhow, good luck with whatever you decide, and remember that any degree course is like a sewer -- what you get out of it depends on what you put into it.

    All the best,

  15. you can also study part time with other universities. i'm doing the AMBA-accredited distance learning MBA with the University of Leicester. two years, total cost about £7500. ELCs pays for £4000 of that.

    currently coming up to the halfway point. it's hard work but sometimes very interesting. personally, the only part i have had trouble with so far is Accounting for Managers, because i've no financial background or experience with budgets or accounts.

    many of my colleagues over here are using Leicester for distance learning, as they have a good reputation. one of my neighbours looked through my books etc and opted for the MBA too.

    as for how much it is "worth" to employers when you leave - i've no idea. i just picked what i perceived as the "hardest" qualification i could find and then tried to get accepted on a course. but i'm damn sure it's more impressive than my 8 x GCSEs ;)