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This Online MBA Program Is Bringing Distance-Learning Into The Real World

Discovery learning techniques on Maastricht School of Management’s (MSM) Online MBA bring the advantages of campus-based courses to bear in the distance-learning space


Wed Apr 18 2018

Why do people opt for full-time MBAs?

For some, it’s the immersive experience of postgraduate education that swings their decision. For others, it’s about networking—getting to know a cohort inside and outside the classroom on a full-time course. For others still, it’s the practical experience that many courses offer: the chance to apply their learning in real-time.

But imagine if you could get all of this from a part-time course—a course that you could complete, if you wanted to, entirely online.

This is what Maastricht School of Management (MSM) aims to deliver through its Online MBA, launched in 2017. The course eliminates the opportunity cost associated with traditional MBAs as it doesn’t require students to leave work. It’s ranked by CEO magazine in the ‘Gold Tier’ of online MBA programs—4th in the world – proving the high quality of this Online MBA program.


The Online MBA at MSM is governed by the principle of ‘Discovery Learning’ which, according to course director Dr. Pascale Hardy, encourages the students to be active in their own education.

“Unlike a traditional course where students obtain most new knowledge directly from course instructors via lectures and textbook-based discussions and assignments,” she explains, “the courses in the online program require that students learn through discovery—by researching, reading, undertaking online activities such as writing papers, and discussion board posts that demonstrate their knowledge, understanding, and their ability to apply [these things].”

Online MBA students have the advantage of being learning while they work, and MSM’s Online MBA program actively encourages MBAs to apply the lessons they learn in their modules to their everyday working environment.

In line with MSM’s increasing commitment to innovation, this active engagement in the collection and collation of course information is supported by the latest developments in technology.

“The Maastricht School of Management Online MBA [uses] cutting-edge technology to support an innovative pedagogical framework in order to offer students the ultimate learning experience,” Pascale confirms. “Students participate in video conferencing sessions [hosted by Zoom Web Communications], during which they review and discuss the topics with their peers and instructor.”

MSM Online MBA students also participate in collaborative virtual activities like webinars and ‘Learning Sets’—small group meetings that use instant messaging and online ‘hangout’ services to simulate the experience of real-time interaction.

The course offers online specializations in International Business and Sustainable Development and Accounting & Finance. There are also options to pursue on-campus specializations.


Taking place over two weeks in July each year, business-related specializations include courses in Entrepreneurship and The Digital Economy; among the industry-focused specializations on offer are courses in Sports Management and Public Sector Management.

Indeed, according to the Graduate Management Admissions Council (GMAC), the number of students receiving sponsorship from an employer for online MBA programs is expected to rise, more than for EMBAs or any other program type.

MSM looks well-equipped to become an attractive option for candidates seeking the hybrid benefits of an MBA and EMBA in an efficient online package.

“The format of the program [at Maastricht School of Management] offers the opportunity to study wherever and whenever suitable [for the individual],” Pascale continues.

“Experienced international faculty are teaching to students from diverse cultural backgrounds, and students are actively interacting through discussion forums with their peers, sharing experiences and becoming part of a diverse, international, virtual classroom and community.”