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When Should You Consider An Alternative To An MBA Program?

Executive programs manager at LSE Department of Management, Becky Coggins, answers our Applicant Question of the Week

By  Jasmine Lee-Zogbessou

Thu Jun 6 2019

It's time for another Applicant Question at BusinessBecause!

Every week, we give you the opportunity to ask one of our chosen admissions experts anything you want to know about getting into business school. One question each week is chosen for our expert to answer.

This week, our question comes from an anonymous user. 

Their question is answered by Becky Coggins, executive programs business development manager at LSE Department of Management.

Applicant Question of the Week:

Dear BusinessBecause, 

When should you consider an alternative to an MBA program?

The Answer:

The post graduate business education market is flooded with options for further study.

It can probably feel a little overwhelming when you begin researching your options.

Further study is a big commitment both in terms of your time and money, so it’s important that you pick the right program to suit your needs.

Whilst an MBA continues to be a popular and worthy choice, there are a wealth of alternative business programs out there you may also want to consider.

Deciding which degree suits you

MBAs tend to be general so you may want to consider an alternative to an MBA if you are looking for something a little more specialized.

If you have a particular career path in mind that requires a certain skill set or area of knowledge and expertise, there are many other degrees and programs available that might address these needs.

You really need to think about your motivations and what you are hoping to get out of a postgraduate course overall.

An alternative program could be the answer if you are looking for a program that is going to take a slightly different teaching approach.

If you’re looking for a program that will challenge you to think differently, as well as give you a set of skills which will make you stand out in the crowd in a market saturated with MBA graduates, then an alternative program could also work too.

MBA vs Masters?

The Department of Management at the London School of Economics offers a Global MSc Management.

It is a program designed with the above in mind and offers the tools and skills that set you apart from other graduates.

The program takes a fresh approach to the traditional MBA curriculum.

Whilst it covers many of the usual topics, such as managerial economics, organizational behavior, and financial management, it takes a social-science based approach with a focus on building fundamental critical thinking skills.

This enables graduates to challenge structures and ideas about people, organizations, and the global business world, no matter what career path they take.

The program is unique as it takes a slightly more academic approach to teaching management.

It still uses case studies and provides an opportunity for the practical application of what you are learning to the real world.

However, it combines this with underlying theories and contextual history to give students a framework they can apply across sectors in the future.

In keeping with the tradition of LSE, we emphasis understanding the root causes of things.

We ask how things are done in the business world but also why, and all within a global context.

This academic rigor gives our students a distinctive competitive advantage in the complex business environment.

This alternative style of program provides a skill set which is quite different to a lot of traditional MBA programs.

You come away having developed your intellectual decision-making skills and are able to look at business challenges from a different perspective.

The tools the program provides won’t become outdated as the business world changes.

They are the types of skills that will continue to be relevant throughout the rest of a graduate’s career as they give you the ability to think abstractly, analytically, and critically. 

Executive management programs come with a multitude of advantages and Europe is seeing a real trend towards them.

In a crowded business world, MBAs are becoming common currency and having a more specialized degree can help you stand out.

Often, they come at a lower financial cost than MBA courses and are run in a modular format, meaning students don’t have to take a break from their career to complete them and can directly apply what they learn in class to their workplace.

Ask an Admissions Expert a Question! small-image.jpg

Next time, you'll have the opportunity to ask Judi Byers, executive director of admissions & financial aid for Samuel Curtis Johnson Graduate School of Management, anything you want about getting into business school.

Judi has been with Samuel Curtis Johnson for four and a half years.

Prior to her current role, she was the admissions director for the Kogod School of Business.

Got a question you'd love Judi to answer? Submit your question on our TwitterFacebook, or LinkedIn pages, send us an email to info@businessbecause.com, or simply post a comment below!