MBA or Masters in Management? You choose

Deciding whether to choose an MBA or a Masters can be a difficult decision. We break down the difference and benefits of each to help make the choice a little easier.

Studying at postgraduate level adds extra depth to your experience allowing you to stand out in an increasingly competitive workforce. However, deciding whether to choose an MBA or a Masters can be a difficult decision.

An MBA is designed for those with business experience already under their belt, whereas a Masters in Management is aimed at people from a wide variety of backgrounds looking to launch a career in management.

Unsure of which is right for you? To make your choice easier, we have broken down the differences between the two, including the benefits of each course and how they can help you to succeed.


What is an MBA?

Masters in Business Administration (MBA) is for ambitious professionals who have at least three years of work experience, ideally in a management position, and are ready to accelerate or redirect their career.

MBAs can vary in length, from 12 month full-time programmes to 24-36 month part-time ‘executive’ programmes. At the University of Exeter Business School, both options are almost identical in content, but our executive programme allows you to continue working alongside your studies.

MBA programmes attract a diverse mix of students from varying industries, nationalities and cultures, giving you fresh perspectives and an international network of ambitious professionals.

Why study an MBA?

You will gain a solid foundation in the fundamentals of commerce, such as finance, economics, accounting, operations, HR and strategy. You will also develop a deeper understanding of your strengths and weaknesses, enabling you to shape your own authentic and effective leadership style.

The Exeter MBA is unique in that is internationally recognised for its focus on sustainability, purposeful leadership, innovation and ‌technology.  We are exceptionally proud to rank Number 1 in the Corporate Knight’s Better World rankings 2017. 

The programme is experiential in nature and not only prepares you to be an influential senior leader in a complex and global future, but also how you can you leverage your career to have a positive impact on the world around you.

You will be supported throughout the programme by a dedicated careers service and provided with unique networking opportunities, to help you achieve your future career goals.

My personal interest lies at the intersection of marketing and technology, and through the MBA’s focus on emerging business models I’ve been able to appreciate how technology and new business models can contribute to a more sustainable world. My MBA knowledge with blockchain, big data and artificial intelligence has opened many doors. The programme as a whole allowed me to identify opportunities in the market place to create value for companies while solving global business challenges. Indeed, this was my professional aspiration.

Stephanie Lindan, MBA 2016 graduate and Utilities Consultant, Accenture


What is a Masters in Management?

A Masters in Management typically attracts students who have recently graduated and are either looking to move into the world of business or further develop their business knowledge. They are typically available to students from almost any academic background and help you to launch a dynamic, international career.

Why study a Masters in Management?

Our flagship management programme MSc International Management is available to study over 9 or 12 months and provides the essential skills, knowledge and insight that employers, worldwide, are looking for.

As well as an international business focus and diverse student cohort you’ll have the opportunity to gain further global perspectives and add an extra dimension to your experience by spending your second semester with one of our prestigious University partners:

This programme is similar to our MBA in that your career is the focus from day one. Our three day Careers Camp during week one will help you cement your career goals and develop a strategy to achieve them. Just like our MBA, you’ll benefit from your own dedicated career coach, employability events and more.

I chose the MSc International Management because it’s not an ordinary postgraduate programme – it combines theory and practice from the very first day to ensure that students are well prepared for a career in global management.

Michael Young, MSc International Management


To find out more about how to apply or the range of scholarships we have available, please get in touch.