Best Distance MBA from UK


georgep
Hi all,
After a lot of research, I decided to go for Durham - Global MBA by distance learning. Just got the unconditional offer today.

Key reasons for me:
1. Triple accredited
2. Top world ranking (their Full time) - FT 2011 ranking 55 - Economist 2011 ranking 55 ( Full time gives an indication)
http://www.dur.ac.uk/dbs/about/rankings/
3. No compulsory visit to the school - hence less opportunity cost.
4. Fee £ 14000 - Spread the cost - pay as you go model
5. Local exam centre - (I live in London)
6. Good internet technology in use - watched sample lessons.
7. Good curriculum and flexibility.
8. Reputed, "old" university.
9. Can be completed as soon as 2 yrs
10. The MBA degree issued is same as Full time/Exec. No marking such as DLMBA or eMBA or MBA (online) or MBA (by distance) etc.


My profile:
1. 16 Yrs of IT consultancy experience in EMEA region.
2. Can't afford to take off from work - or loose pay
3. Age 39
4. 2 kids - so no go for evening or weekend classes.

Other schools I considered and why did not go further.
I did not consider any non-triple accredited ones.

1. Warwick - Around 18 days off required to attend compulsory workshop. nearly a month off from work (in 3 years) - No London Exam centre - Opportunity cost!
2. Manchester - 30 days off :-(
3. Henley - 20 days off :-(
4. Strathclyde - 18 days off, No London Exam centre (or extra cost).

Key minus points for me:
1. The exams are conducted on Weekdays - I have to take day off (loss of pay) - Anyway all universities in my list have the same issue.

I am self-financing my MBA with no employer support such as paid day-offs, etc. So, I guess the value for money and to fit in my work-life - Durham fits the bill.


PS: I am not a PR or marketing guy for Durham. I am just letting my views for people like me.


===============================
Update on 03/05/2013
-----------------------------
Wow!, this thread is still going well even after 2 yrs..

Please note that DBS has sharply increased the price to £19000.

http://www.dur.ac.uk/business/glc/mba-dl/
Hi all,
After a lot of research, I decided to go for Durham - Global MBA by distance learning. Just got the unconditional offer today.

Key reasons for me:
1. Triple accredited
2. Top world ranking (their Full time) - FT 2011 ranking 55 - Economist 2011 ranking 55 ( Full time gives an indication)
http://www.dur.ac.uk/dbs/about/rankings/
3. No compulsory visit to the school - hence less opportunity cost.
4. Fee £ 14000 - Spread the cost - pay as you go model
5. Local exam centre - (I live in London)
6. Good internet technology in use - watched sample lessons.
7. Good curriculum and flexibility.
8. Reputed, "old" university.
9. Can be completed as soon as 2 yrs
10. The MBA degree issued is same as Full time/Exec. No marking such as DLMBA or eMBA or MBA (online) or MBA (by distance) etc.


My profile:
1. 16 Yrs of IT consultancy experience in EMEA region.
2. Can't afford to take off from work - or loose pay
3. Age 39
4. 2 kids - so no go for evening or weekend classes.

Other schools I considered and why did not go further.
I did not consider any non-triple accredited ones.

1. Warwick - Around 18 days off required to attend compulsory workshop. nearly a month off from work (in 3 years) - No London Exam centre - Opportunity cost!
2. Manchester - 30 days off :-(
3. Henley - 20 days off :-(
4. Strathclyde - 18 days off, No London Exam centre (or extra cost).

Key minus points for me:
1. The exams are conducted on Weekdays - I have to take day off (loss of pay) - Anyway all universities in my list have the same issue.

I am self-financing my MBA with no employer support such as paid day-offs, etc. So, I guess the value for money and to fit in my work-life - Durham fits the bill.


PS: I am not a PR or marketing guy for Durham. I am just letting my views for people like me.


===============================
Update on 03/05/2013
-----------------------------
Wow!, this thread is still going well even after 2 yrs..

Please note that DBS has sharply increased the price to £19000.

http://www.dur.ac.uk/business/glc/mba-dl/
quote
georgep
By the way, I got admission now from Warwick and Manchester as well. But I am going to stick with Durham.

Anyone in this discussion board joined Durham this year?
By the way, I got admission now from Warwick and Manchester as well. But I am going to stick with Durham.

Anyone in this discussion board joined Durham this year?
quote
gaju1869
Although Distance Learning MBA will not mention it on degree papers ( which is most unlikely) one can not say that it was a full time. If you are in London I suggest please join at-least part time MBA where you will be attending classes on weekends. Distance learning MBA will not fetch you desired returns.
Although Distance Learning MBA will not mention it on degree papers ( which is most unlikely) one can not say that it was a full time. If you are in London I suggest please join at-least part time MBA where you will be attending classes on weekends. Distance learning MBA will not fetch you desired returns.
quote
gaju1869
By the way, I got admission now from Warwick and Manchester as well. But I am going to stick with Durham.

Anyone in this discussion board joined Durham this year?

I too got an offer from Durham for its Full Time MBA but I preferred to join Henley since it is for Senior Managers with more experience
<blockquote>By the way, I got admission now from Warwick and Manchester as well. But I am going to stick with Durham.

Anyone in this discussion board joined Durham this year?</blockquote>
I too got an offer from Durham for its Full Time MBA but I preferred to join Henley since it is for Senior Managers with more experience
quote
georgep
As I mentioned before I can't take part time/weekend programs. Henley is too expensive and opportunity costs are way too high. 20 days off work is required. Thanks for the comparison anyway.

I am clear on my decision. Durham stays at the top of my list.
As I mentioned before I can't take part time/weekend programs. Henley is too expensive and opportunity costs are way too high. 20 days off work is required. Thanks for the comparison anyway.

I am clear on my decision. Durham stays at the top of my list.

quote
georgep
Hi,
Anyone from emerging economy countries (BRIC) in this forum?

What do you think about the value of UK MBA such as Durham in your country?

Thanks for sharing your views.
Hi,
Anyone from emerging economy countries (BRIC) in this forum?

What do you think about the value of UK MBA such as Durham in your country?

Thanks for sharing your views.
quote
CANUCK
Right,

Just finishing the Warwick MBA...

Re your post and your list of items...

Durham: No compulsory visit to the school - hence less opportunity cost.

This is where I have issues as the interaction with students from around the world was invaluable and worth any days away from work, and out weights any costs. Trying not to go to Campus is costing immensely more than the few dollars in money, as well the contacts made are enduring. I still keep in regular contact with my September seminar team mates, and will continue to do so.

I have the two kids, dog, etc etc. but not IT as I'm in Marketing but I would suggest you are cutting yourself short from the benefits of attending Campus.
Right,

Just finishing the Warwick MBA...

Re your post and your list of items...

Durham: No compulsory visit to the school - hence less opportunity cost.

This is where I have issues as the interaction with students from around the world was invaluable and worth any days away from work, and out weights any costs. Trying not to go to Campus is costing immensely more than the few dollars in money, as well the contacts made are enduring. I still keep in regular contact with my September seminar team mates, and will continue to do so.

I have the two kids, dog, etc etc. but not IT as I'm in Marketing but I would suggest you are cutting yourself short from the benefits of attending Campus.
quote
gaju1869
I agree with Canuck I did my distance learning MBA 10 years before since I could not afford tuition fees at that point of time. I could reap the benefit of DL MBA to some extent but always wanted to do it full time by attending campus and decided to go for it now.
I agree with Canuck I did my distance learning MBA 10 years before since I could not afford tuition fees at that point of time. I could reap the benefit of DL MBA to some extent but always wanted to do it full time by attending campus and decided to go for it now.
quote
georgep
I think you guys have valid points about attending campus. I have already compared all schools regarding this option.

Durham offers two on campus options at no extra fee.

1. Global MBA Summer School (one-week per year)
2. Global MBA Residencies (intensive modules on campus and exam workshops).

They also made it as optional rather than compulsory.

I think I will take your advice and attend a summer school, if I like it, I will try to take residency. Obviously the cost will increase- since it is optional I can always choose.

Thanks.
I think you guys have valid points about attending campus. I have already compared all schools regarding this option.

Durham offers two on campus options at no extra fee.

1. Global MBA Summer School (one-week per year)
2. Global MBA Residencies (intensive modules on campus and exam workshops).

They also made it as optional rather than compulsory.

I think I will take your advice and attend a summer school, if I like it, I will try to take residency. Obviously the cost will increase- since it is optional I can always choose.

Thanks.
quote
CANUCK
Yes, even if you can't afford to go to campus full time the Warwick DLMBA does have an intensive September seminar where you are on campus for about nine days per year, invaluable. The course intensiveness and the syndicate seminar groups, as well as other times when you get to meet other students, such as meals, socially or otherwise, develops some lasting contacts world wide.

The Warwick DLMBA has been the ticket for me, I'm based in Canada, for reasons already posted here on FINDMBA within the two threads I have responded to so far.
Yes, even if you can't afford to go to campus full time the Warwick DLMBA does have an intensive September seminar where you are on campus for about nine days per year, invaluable. The course intensiveness and the syndicate seminar groups, as well as other times when you get to meet other students, such as meals, socially or otherwise, develops some lasting contacts world wide.

The Warwick DLMBA has been the ticket for me, I'm based in Canada, for reasons already posted here on FINDMBA within the two threads I have responded to so far.
quote
CANUCK
Warwick September seminar is included in yearly fees while obviously the travel, meals and accommodation are not, but then again they probably aren't included with other programs either.

I don't know much about the other school's programs but I've enjoyed and greatly benefited from my experience at Warwick, so I would recommend Warwick DLMBA from experience not from comparison of program outlines.
Warwick September seminar is included in yearly fees while obviously the travel, meals and accommodation are not, but then again they probably aren't included with other programs either.

I don't know much about the other school's programs but I've enjoyed and greatly benefited from my experience at Warwick, so I would recommend Warwick DLMBA from experience not from comparison of program outlines.
quote
georgep
Durham Business School
-----------------------------------
I just completed the online registration process. Simple and straight forward process and friendly, helpful administration team.

I am allowed to complete the full programme on my own pace till 2016 (minimum duration is 2 years).

Registration fee was £375
For the first term I opted to take only 2 core modules - each costing me £1100.

So for the next six months all I pay is £375 + (£1100 *2) = £2575 (includes everything - books/materials, online, exams, etc).

For self financing student like me who doesn't like to take heavy bank loans, it is a great news. Pay as you go is a top plus point.

:-) "No loans to worry at the end of the programme" :-)
:-) Plus Value for money :-)

I haven't recived any course material yet. I am yet to attend online induction programme.

I will post more info as I progress through the course.
Durham Business School
-----------------------------------
I just completed the online registration process. Simple and straight forward process and friendly, helpful administration team.

I am allowed to complete the full programme on my own pace till 2016 (minimum duration is 2 years).

Registration fee was £375
For the first term I opted to take only 2 core modules - each costing me £1100.

So for the next six months all I pay is £375 + (£1100 *2) = £2575 (includes everything - books/materials, online, exams, etc).

For self financing student like me who doesn't like to take heavy bank loans, it is a great news. Pay as you go is a top plus point.

:-) "No loans to worry at the end of the programme" :-)
:-) Plus Value for money :-)

I haven't recived any course material yet. I am yet to attend online induction programme.

I will post more info as I progress through the course.
quote
CANUCK
Good luck with your choice, all the best!

Keep Warwick in mind if the other doesn't live up to expectations.

I'm busy researching PhDs now......
Good luck with your choice, all the best!

Keep Warwick in mind if the other doesn't live up to expectations.

I'm busy researching PhDs now......
quote
georgep
Here is a good analysis of various distance MBAs, but there isn't details about my school of choice. It is refered in the comparison table at the end.

http://media.economist.com/media/WMBA/WMBA_Special_2010b.pdf

But I used it to eliminate some programmes such as Imperial, Open, Bradford, etc - before eliminating based on triple accredition.
Here is a good analysis of various distance MBAs, but there isn't details about my school of choice. It is refered in the comparison table at the end.

http://media.economist.com/media/WMBA/WMBA_Special_2010b.pdf

But I used it to eliminate some programmes such as Imperial, Open, Bradford, etc - before eliminating based on triple accredition.
quote
Duncan
The above linked report from The Economist is great! Aston and Warwick look best in the UK.
The above linked report from The Economist is great! Aston and Warwick look best in the UK.
quote
georgep
I think any triple accredited school will do. There is good level of confidence in them. After that it is more of your choise based on personal needs and your career objective, etc.

In short, ask yourself what do you want to do with your MBA?
The answer will help you to make the correct choice. Don't be influenced by any of the marketing propaganda of any school.

As far as my choice is concerned, I know exactly what I want to do with my MBA and where I would like to end up and how long will it take and what are the other things required to get there.

Here is a true story of someone at my client site ..

I met him 4 years ago. He had 10+ years of IT consultancy experience in the UK.
One fine morning, he decided to do an MBA. He did lot of research and opted to go for a full time MBA at a top tier school.
He wrote GMAT and got good ranks and got admission at few top schools but decided to do at TopUK Business School
He resigned his job and joined. He completed the full time MBA with good ranks. Soon after the completion he joined a management consultancy.
Something must have gone wrong he did not stay there for more than 6 months, then joined another managerial role - this time in a bank.
Again did not stay for more than few months. Then, jobless for a while. He could not stay like that as the "prestigious MBA loan"
calling him to go back to work.

I recently saw him again. He is doing the same job at the same company with exactly the same salary that he had before his MBA adventure.
Only difference is that he has a "prestigious fulltime MBA" degree and must be having a 70K+ loan to pay (forget the 1 year opportunity cost and fulltime study expenses).
And he seemed to be happy with his job now!

I even started questioning myself, what did the MBA bring to him? Is it worth?
After a lot of self reflection, I realised that it is up to you. It is not the MBA that will change you, it is you and your goal.

The moral of the story .. "know thyself"

So, clarity in your goal is the key :-)

Good luck to every one!
I think any triple accredited school will do. There is good level of confidence in them. After that it is more of your choise based on personal needs and your career objective, etc.

In short, ask yourself what do you want to do with your MBA?
The answer will help you to make the correct choice. Don't be influenced by any of the marketing propaganda of any school.

As far as my choice is concerned, I know exactly what I want to do with my MBA and where I would like to end up and how long will it take and what are the other things required to get there.

Here is a true story of someone at my client site ..

I met him 4 years ago. He had 10+ years of IT consultancy experience in the UK.
One fine morning, he decided to do an MBA. He did lot of research and opted to go for a full time MBA at a top tier school.
He wrote GMAT and got good ranks and got admission at few top schools but decided to do at TopUK Business School
He resigned his job and joined. He completed the full time MBA with good ranks. Soon after the completion he joined a management consultancy.
Something must have gone wrong he did not stay there for more than 6 months, then joined another managerial role - this time in a bank.
Again did not stay for more than few months. Then, jobless for a while. He could not stay like that as the "prestigious MBA loan"
calling him to go back to work.

I recently saw him again. He is doing the same job at the same company with exactly the same salary that he had before his MBA adventure.
Only difference is that he has a "prestigious fulltime MBA" degree and must be having a 70K+ loan to pay (forget the 1 year opportunity cost and fulltime study expenses).
And he seemed to be happy with his job now!

I even started questioning myself, what did the MBA bring to him? Is it worth?
After a lot of self reflection, I realised that it is up to you. It is not the MBA that will change you, it is you and your goal.

The moral of the story .. "know thyself"

So, clarity in your goal is the key :-)

Good luck to every one!



quote
CANUCK
Yes,

Failure to plan is planning to fail.

You have to embrace the change otherwise more letters after your name will not make a difference. Embracing the change will not happen in 6 months, and you will most-likely not walk into an ivory tower corner office within that time as well.

WOW, 70+ debt for the MBA (could be 95+ at some schools) , DL is just as good, same degree, and many will respect you for trying to achieve it while still working.

I still personally stick with my recommendation of the Warwick DLMBA as the best choice out there.
Yes,

Failure to plan is planning to fail.

You have to embrace the change otherwise more letters after your name will not make a difference. Embracing the change will not happen in 6 months, and you will most-likely not walk into an ivory tower corner office within that time as well.

WOW, 70+ debt for the MBA (could be 95+ at some schools) , DL is just as good, same degree, and many will respect you for trying to achieve it while still working.

I still personally stick with my recommendation of the Warwick DLMBA as the best choice out there.
quote
Duncan
I also think the Warwick MBA is a great choice, and I especially like the way you can go onto campus quite flexibly, and even move between the DL, PT and FT modes. I volunteer as an MBA admissions interviewer, and one thing that strikes me is that many MBAs have functional skills but not soft managerial skills, mainly because they are not actually involved in managing people. For those folk, any MBAs with intensive groupwork (which can also be part of a DL course) really can develop their capacities...
I also think the Warwick MBA is a great choice, and I especially like the way you can go onto campus quite flexibly, and even move between the DL, PT and FT modes. I volunteer as an MBA admissions interviewer, and one thing that strikes me is that many MBAs have functional skills but not soft managerial skills, mainly because they are not actually involved in managing people. For those folk, any MBAs with intensive groupwork (which can also be part of a DL course) really can develop their capacities...
quote
CANUCK
Definitely because to move into management is to move into managing people. If you don't develop the interpersonal skills to interact with people, you will not be successful in applying what you learnt at the MBA.

The international interaction with the other students was invaluable for exposure to other nationalities and cultures.

Warwick DLMBA with on campus seminars worked out great!
Definitely because to move into management is to move into managing people. If you don't develop the interpersonal skills to interact with people, you will not be successful in applying what you learnt at the MBA.

The international interaction with the other students was invaluable for exposure to other nationalities and cultures.

Warwick DLMBA with on campus seminars worked out great!

quote
georgep
Guys,
Soft skills are hard to develop, it has to be built over years.
Not that easy to pickup in a one week seminar.

Even a fulltime Oxford MBA could not develop that in student who lives at Oxford campus, eats and sleeps his MBA over a year with "world class" cohort. It is the fact.

Please be realistic. How could a one week Warwick (or Durham or any for that matter) seminar magically develop softskills? Do they have a "softskill magic wand"? and a spell such as "Implemete soft et international skills rapidmo..." that can be put on a DL student and he acquires world class softskills, international skills and cultural skills magically. :-) Is n't it false marketing?

The truth is that it takes years in the real world and on the field to develop such skills.

I have spoken to real C-level executives with MBA and got their expert views. They said the Exec Mgt skills are made of ..

1. Content ( your core functional skills) +
2. Management knowledge (acquired via MBA or experience over several years) +
3. Soft skills (acquired via parctical experience and/or coaching) +
4. Exec skills (acquired via exec coaching and experience )

I have got item 1 and currently building item 2. MBA is the right tool to build the managment knowledge "rapidmo".
Still a long way to go ...

No hard feelings guys.. It is very interesting to see all our view points.
We are MBA students/aspirants, if we don't wash, rinse and hang it dry, who else will?
Guys,
Soft skills are hard to develop, it has to be built over years.
Not that easy to pickup in a one week seminar.

Even a fulltime Oxford MBA could not develop that in student who lives at Oxford campus, eats and sleeps his MBA over a year with "world class" cohort. It is the fact.

Please be realistic. How could a one week Warwick (or Durham or any for that matter) seminar magically develop softskills? Do they have a "softskill magic wand"? and a spell such as "Implemete soft et international skills rapidmo..." that can be put on a DL student and he acquires world class softskills, international skills and cultural skills magically. :-) Is n't it false marketing?

The truth is that it takes years in the real world and on the field to develop such skills.

I have spoken to real C-level executives with MBA and got their expert views. They said the Exec Mgt skills are made of ..

1. Content ( your core functional skills) +
2. Management knowledge (acquired via MBA or experience over several years) +
3. Soft skills (acquired via parctical experience and/or coaching) +
4. Exec skills (acquired via exec coaching and experience )

I have got item 1 and currently building item 2. MBA is the right tool to build the managment knowledge "rapidmo".
Still a long way to go ...

No hard feelings guys.. It is very interesting to see all our view points.
We are MBA students/aspirants, if we don't wash, rinse and hang it dry, who else will?

quote

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