Taught course

Executive Master of Business Administration

University of Edinburgh · Business School

Entry requirements

Applicants require five years’ continuous work experience in a managerial or supervisory position. Applicants also require a first class or 2:1 Honours degree from a recognised University in any subject, or an appropriate professional qualification. Applicants who do not hold a degree or professional qualification may still be considered if they have a strong employment record demonstrating a high degree of responsibility. We may also require GMAT (minimum 600 score preferred) if further evidence of ability is needed. If English is not your first language, you must have one of the following qualifications as evidence of your spoken and written English. IELTS: total 7.0 (at least 6.0 in each module) TOEFL-iBT: Total 100 (at least 20 in each module) PTE(A): Total 67 (at least 56 in each of the "Communicative Skills" sections) CPE: Grade B; CAE: Grade A

Months of entry


Course content

Successful businesses in the future will be those that can confidently and capably steer a path through a world characterised by intense competition, rapid technological development, economic turbulence and increasing resource insecurity.

Businesses need leaders who can think and act strategically in this volatile environment, managing the risk and challenges involved, but also spotting and seizing opportunities for efficiency, innovation and new business models. Businesses also need leaders who will act responsibly in delivering value to all stakeholders.

The Edinburgh MBA will prepare participants to progress with confidence into leadership roles in this new world. We will deepen participants’ understanding of how businesses and markets work, how value is created through innovation and marketing, how strategies are crafted, how businesses are financed, how performance is measured, how value is delivered efficiently and effectively, and how organisations should be governed, managed and led through change.

We will instil a passion for business improvement, innovation and entrepreneurial action to help participants lead in the growth or creation of new business opportunities. We will develop participants’ ability to think strategically and beyond disciplinary silos. Successful leadership also requires accomplished interpersonal skills to bring about change in organisations. Through coaching and skills training, we will work with participants to understand their leadership strengths and weaknesses and provide support for improvement.

Programme description

The programme aims to develop leaders who:

  • demonstrate a strategic mind-set and skill-set
  • recognise their role as responsible stewards of financial, social and natural capital
  • are capable of leading improvement, change and innovation in organisations
  • are confident and capable critical thinkers and decision-makers
  • have an international perspective
  • value and take advantage of the benefits of collaborative and lifelong learning

The Executive MBA is a taught programme delivered by experienced internal and visiting faculty, and complemented by guest practitioner speakers from industry and the professions.

Programme structure

The programme is delivered in a modular format, starting in September each year. The main taught part of the programme is delivered over 21 months, followed by completion of a Capstone Project. Participants will complete the full programme within 27 months.

The design of the modules reflects consideration given to the balance between participant and employer investment and maintaining work-life balance. For most participants attending modules will mean taking one day a month from their normal working week and one day from their weekend with modules commencing Friday lunchtime and ending early Saturday evening.

Most of the core courses will run over three months, with one day per course on each of three weekends (with the exception of Strategic Leadership which will be taught in a series of three blocks across both years). Option courses will be delivered in the middle of Year 2 and will be taught in intensive one-week blocks. Between modules, participants will work on assignments and undertake further reading and study, supported by on-line resources and discussion forums.

The programme combines rigorous academic study with practical application. This is achieved both in the classroom through case studies but also via assessments that directly relate to the participants’ own organisations. There will also be opportunities to undertake consultancy-style project work with external organisations, to broaden participants’ insights into alternative business models and approaches.

Core courses include: Strategic Leadership, Strategic Marketing, Organising for Effectiveness, Operations Improvement, Understanding Economies, Finance, Accounting, Leadership and Responsibility, Entrepreneurial Leadership, Creative Strategy and Leading Strategic Change. Participants can also select from a range of option courses. Participants also undertake a major capstone project. In parallel with academic study, the programme is complemented by a Leadership and Professional Development programme and personal coaching.

Qualification and course duration


part time
27 months

Course contact details

MBA Administrator
+44 (0) 131 650 9663