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To MBA or not to MBA, that is the question

To MBA or not to MBA, that is the question

To MBA or not to MBA, that is the question

I have heard that with the growing number of schools that offer "Master of Business Administration" programs, the quality of the education may not be high enough to warrant doing it.

My community university offers a two-year joint MBA/MENG program that sounds very interesting, but I want to make sure that if I decide to do it, I will get a good program. How can I rate one MBA against another? I'm sure they are not all created equal.

More generally, is it worth doing an MBA at all?

RE: To MBA or not to MBA, that is the question

The Association of MBA's produce a guide to business schools and MBA's (sorry, can't remember the exact title). It describes the content/format of many MBA's in UK/EC/USA and the facilities and resources of the business schools providing them.

The Association also evaluates MBA's ensuring that those gaining approval reach a minimum standard.

RE: To MBA or not to MBA, that is the question

Check out BusinessWeek's biennial ranking of MBA programs - it's on their website.  The rankings are primarily focused on the US, but do have some international schools as well.  US News & World Report also does a ranking, but I don't consider it to be as reliable.

However, remember that overall rankings are very subjective -- a top ranked MBA program may not be particulary good in your particular area of interest.  Also, some of the top B-schools (for example, Duke) now have distance-learning programs.

As for the value of an MBA, I can't really tell you because I don't have one.  My wife is currently in the MBA program at Duke, but she comes from a completely different background than me (she's a lawyer) -- it's extremely useful for her as she has no real mathematics/finance background.  You might want to check out one of the technology-focused MBAs like Carnegie-Mellon or Queen's (in Canada) rather than a general mgmt MBA like Wharton, Duke or Stanford.  The University of Michigan has a top-ranked general mgmt MBA that focuses more on manufacturing & less on I-banking, so that may also be more to your liking.

Return on investment is another factor -- some of the state schools (U.Mich., U.Va., UCLA, UC Berkely) have programs every bit as good as the top private B-schools, but at a fraction of the cost if you're a resident of the state.

Good luck in your quest for higher education!  Let me know if you have any questions -- I did most of the B-school research for my wife, so I may be able to assist you.


RE: To MBA or not to MBA, that is the question

This question is for CJM.
Taking advantage of your research on MBA programs, do you know a MBA program oriented to the Natural Gas Industry or either to the Oil and Gas Industry? do you have the same information about the MBA programs taught in the UK?

Thank you,


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