University of Leicester MBA vs. Edinburgh Business School MBA?

Discussion in 'Business and MBA degrees' started by LG800, Feb 9, 2005.

  1. Professor Kennedy

    Professor Kennedy New Member

    Of course, all off-campus and out of sight work is subject to the risk that it is not the original work of the candidate. This is true of a PhD, a MSc, a MBA project or an undergraduate project or essay.

    Even an invigilated (protored) exam, though the supervisiory arrangements of such an exam minimise cheating, is sbject to some always try to beat the system. EBS is an onc ampus Bricks and Mortar University as well as one of the world's largest DL Schools, and our Disciplinary Committee deals with several cases per exam Diet of cheating. Most exam system managers are well versed in every known form of cheating, now added to by mobile phones and texting.

    Risk assessment grades the risks and adjusts the system to minimise lapses. My point, often made here, is that where exam regimes are relaxed by faculty the risk increases and with the risk so does the incidence of cheating. There is also 'collusive cheating' by faculty, which (accidentally) permits relaxation to ensure higher pass rates in order to raise the 'completion ratio' for purposes to do with the 'ranking' of the Schools.

    In the old collegiate tutorial system of Oxford/Cambridge/ Glasgow/Edinburgh, St Andrews universities, formed well before the 18th century and maintained until recent years, the faculty student ratio was very low. Thus, over the three/four years for a Bachelor degree, the incidence of 'cheating' was minimal because the supervision was too intense. Change that ratio and the relationship weakens until in the modern classes of 1:40 or worse it is less possible to spot plagiarised work. With the Internet it has moved beyond acceptable risks.

    Hence, grading systems that rely to a larger extent on out of sight and off-campus work are less reliable as a measure of a named student's performance than those that rely on rigorous, indepentally invigilated, written exams with no choice of questions.

    It has been pointed out to me here that certain subjects cannot be examined in the manner of the MBA subjects because they require considerable work to produce anything worth examining. I accept that point and I have no ready answers to it. But I do not accept the point that we must relax the MBA exam regime because some students 'cannot write by hand', 'are no good at exams', 'suffer from stress', and 'we must test more than their final exam performance'.

    Recently, I graded two exams dictated by a blind student to a stenographer, several similarly prepared by a student with severe dyslexia. There are ways of adjusting the system within the overall regime but experts in the subject area would be best able to suggest how.

    In the case of a PhD disertation this comes down to close supervision. The supervisor must be a subject expert and must closely supervise the student's progress. In my experience of supervising PhD dissertations it does not take long to recognise the signs that a student is 'faking it'. But this is back to the faculty ratio. The first of the 141 EBS DL DBA students are passing through their DL taught MSc classes to their disseration stage. We will see how confident we will be with the original nature of their work.

    The history of the adoption of the dissertation/project system in British MBAs is interesting. It boils down to it being adopted (though it was not common in the US) from what appears to be immitation - early Schools had a dissertation (influenced I believe by the habits of consultancy firms in UK industry and executive Management programmes, hence followers copied. It is now established as 'necessary'.

    Durham has a dissertation and I have some experience of its quality - my son-in-law has his MBA from Durham (part-time). I have no reason to suspect his project's provenance.

    This does not undermine my comments on the system in general (anecdote is not data).
  2. Stanislav

    Stanislav Well-Known Member

    I must admit, Professor, I positively LOVE the way you rate schools. The more similar to EBS, the better. :)

    Seriously, though, I think everybody here appreciate your extensive knowledge of UK academia "from the inside". This begs for the question, though: will those differencies in "quality" be even visible for anyone "outside", namely employers in the US, Asia and continental Europe. Here is the more typical question, for American contributors: what are the differences, if any, in "degree utility" in the US between, say, EBS MBA and Leicester MBA?

    Unrelated question to Professor Kennedy: what is your opinion on Oxford Brookes U.? It has been mentioned here, referencing to their partnership with ACCA in providing BSc in Applied Accounting to ACCA students. My wife, having time on her hands, (extremely) limited finances and a passion for accounting, might consider going the ACCA road in the near future, on wich condition getting that BSc becomes way too cheap and easy to attain. How would you judge relative worth of it?
  3. Professor Kennedy

    Professor Kennedy New Member

    You have hit on a global problem: recognition of the relative worth of own country university degrees with all or any foreign degrees (top level generalisation) and own specific institution's degrees with specific foreign institution's degrees (specific measure).

    Now, if experienced academics are unsure, employers and government agencies must be even less sure. Add in 'accreditating' agencies and their different criteria from different premises and we have, well, frankly a mess, or what lawyers would call 'unsafe judgements'.

    So a US employer looking at the merits of a British degree will either accept it on its merits or steer clear in risk averse mode at least for junior or mddle management jobs. When it comes to senior jobs, the cv is more important as a whole than nuances of university degree taken years back.

    Oxford Brookes is the ex-polytechnic of Oxford and has no connection with Oxford University. Its relationship with ACCA is up for renewal and I am watching developments, though I may be retired (end March) before events unfold. ACCA is a sound professional organisation in the UK (and the Commonwealth).

    I am not impressed with Oxford Brookes MBA as it is not exam based as I understand the term. It may be an excellent programme but, based on essay papers off campus and out of sight, there is no independent verification available to make that judgement of its 'graduates'.

    Incidentally, one of my last projects at EBS was to set up to service in DL format our undergraduate School of Management's Bachelor in Business with an on-line version. This goes ahead this Summer. If we could eventually do something with some institution like ACCA it could produce a neat combination (plus, our DL MBA). But that is enough about EBS in case I get accused of, er, 'shill-ing'(?).

    I believe you and your wife would find many opportunities in DL degrees at numerous US, UK and Australia universities now and in the near future, and at a wide range of prices and conditions to suit. Why not pose your last question in a new thread on degreeinfo and ask the membership to supply details of their experiences or their School's offerings? There is much experience on degreeinfo from around the world.
  4. Stanislav

    Stanislav Well-Known Member

    In my opinion, most parties, absent reliable information, will rely on the name recognition and general reputation of the "British royal charter". That's the whole point of "accreditation", "official" or not. Unfortunately, this obscures differencies among schools, making, say, EBS and Leicester equal in "utility".

    Thank you for this information. I did some research on the Internet and, apparently, ACCA qualifications carry significant weight in Russia and are well respected in Ukraine. What they do for accounting education around the globe is truly great!
  5. Yan

    Yan New Member

    The Association of Chartered Certified Accountants (ACCA), incorporated by Royal Charter, celebrated its centenary last year. It now has over 100,000 members and 220,000 students (1996: 50,000 members & 130,000 students) in over 160 countries.

    It helped to develop the profession in former Soviet states and in the Russian Federation. By 2003, ACCA's coverage is from Prague to Vladivostok and St. Petersburg to Yerevan, Armenia (Accounting & Business, Jan. 2004).

    Its official website:

    Its Centenary's website:
  6. Stanislav

    Stanislav Well-Known Member

    Yeah. Amazing, isnt' it?

    Now if they'd have similar recognition in the US...
  7. soochy148

    soochy148 New Member

    Distance Learning - MBA

    Hi proffesor Kenedy,

    i appreciate your point of view regarding the distance leanring, but i'm not fully supporting as for me its very suitable as i'm currenlty working in Dubai-UAE and would like to get MBA through distance learning from UK collage, cuz i cannot be in the uk now as well as the cost plus i have a very valid point - i wudnt fool my self by getting my investmet and get somone to pass the exams and essays for me !

    i'm between some MBA's through distance leanring method i would highly appreicate your support in this regard in order to help me in this...

    Heriot watt edinburgh MBA -- they have weekend classes as well
    Leicester distance leanring MBA - they have weekend classes as well - sttaford associate
    Warwick global MBA - my issue with this its 3 years program and its the most costly...

    the three of them offer summer classes as well optional courses to be taken in the campus.

    EDS , Leicester are around 8500 English pound
    Warwick 16000 English pound

    highly appreciate your reply on this matter as am considering to start on feb.

    thanks in advance.

  8. edowave

    edowave Active Member

    Hello Ahmed,
    You replied to a thread from 2005. Professor Kennedy has since retired from EBS, and I'm not sure if he visits this forum anymore. EBS does have a campus in Dubai if that helps with your decision making or not.
  9. Kolmar

    Kolmar New Member

    I am from Croatia and I want to go at Edinbrgh Business School, but I can find how many pound (euro) this school costs and I want to learn without distance learning if its possible.
    Can someone help me.
  10. Kizmet

    Kizmet Moderator

    Here are the full-time fees

    Distance Learning MBA Course Fees : Edinburgh Business School

    If you don't want to do distance learning then I'd respectfully suggest you've come to the wrong place. Why not simply contact the school?
  11. Kolmar

    Kolmar New Member

    Because my english is not good enough :). Thanks for advice.
    One question again. I am not interesed to MBA, but MSc in Financial Management. Self Study MSc Financial Management Course Fees : Edinburgh Business School
    In this link, if you put Croatia in country, its worte that is 875 GBP per course. I think that is cheaper MSc, than MBA because MBA is 15 000 GBP, MSc is 875X9 (courses)= 7 875 GBP. Can you check if this is correct????
    Thank you.
  12. edowave

    edowave Active Member

    Although some of the courses are available on campus, EBS does not have a completely full-time on-campus MSc. That is why the MSc price doesn't match the full-time MBA price.

    There is probably a full-time Finance program through the school of management or actuarial science, but not EBS.
  13. major56

    major56 Active Member

    In addition:

    The Centre for Financial and Management Studies (University of London): offer several MSc degrees in Finance via DL
    Programmes: MScs

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