Structure and content
The full-time Stirling MBA combines academic theory with real-life business case study analysis, underpinned by significant personal and professional development support. Successful completion of the first six taught modules leads to the award of Certificate, and the second six taught modules, including electives, leads to the award of Postgraduate Diploma. Students then progress to the Master's element of the course where you will be required to complete a significant piece of research which relates to an area of personal interest (Dissertation) or else on behalf of an external client organisation (otherwise known as a Student Consultancy Project).
Key components of the course include:
- Self-awareness and personal capability - the PPD module will help you identify, develop and practice key skills that contribute to a successful managerial career including handling conflict in groups, managing group dynamics, assertiveness, facilitation, critical reasoning and argument building. These skills are fundamental to the instinctive and resilient manager to cope with all situations that you may meet in the future.
- Education means business - bringing together local businesses, students and business support agencies, to solve real problems that businesses are faced with today. This is a key element of the theory-practice-theory relationship.
- Masterclasses– delivered by world-renowned academics and industry leaders who are responsible for shaping management thinking today. This year’s masterclasses include insights from two of Stirling’s eminent professors:
- Boardroom Action and Economic Institutions – Professor David (Danny) Blanchflower, who is also a research associate at the National Bureau of Economic Research, a visiting scholar at the Federal Reserve Bank of Boston and was a former member of the Bank of England monetary policy committee. Danny is currently an economic columnist for both the New Statesman magazine and the Independent Newspaper, as well as a contributing editor of Bloomberg Television.
- Personal Resilience in Context – Professor Alex Wood, whose research into well-being is internationally recognised and regularly featured in prestigious media publications including Time magazine and the Financial Times. His research is being applied in diverse settings such as schools, businesses, and health care providers.
- Organised field trips - gain an insight into the workings of specially selected Scottish companies. Visits will include an overview on the company's history and culture, as well as understanding their approach to strategy development.
Make a difference with a Stirling MBA
We believe that everyone has the capacity to be outstanding, and it is the role of the Stirling MBA to facilitate that transformation. The Stirling MBA focuses on the development of the whole person. It enables each individual to become aware of their untapped capabilities. Our MBA is unusual in its holistic approach – it is not only focused on sustainable strategy, but also on sustainable selves. Consequently, participants will develop an understanding of both functional and operational demands as well as their personal role as an inspiring leader.
At Stirling Management School we understand the importance of your postgraduate degree to help you with your career choices. We understand the skills and personal qualities that recruiters look for in an individual. With such an understanding we have carefully embedded opportunities to identify, practice and develop those skills during your time with us, which is reflected in the personal and professional development modules. We think that the development of these skills is complementary with a world-class management education.
From day one our 'Flying Start Leadership' programme is designed to help you make clear your learning and development aims and objectives, which will evolve during the year. Our programme provides opportunities for personal and professional skill development that will be the foundation of your successful management career.
In addition, the range of our classes ensures that all of our students gain an insight into each important management function, such as, accounting and finance, marketing, human resource management, operations management so that students encounter the rare opportunity to understand all aspects of business and management. We also help you to understand how these functions are integrated through our strategy classes, enabling you to develop helicopter skills – the ability to see the wood and the trees – the big picture and the detail and work comfortably with both at the same time.
As one current postgraduate student recently commented: “At Stirling you educate us, whilst back home they teach us” – a clear understanding of the approach we take to our teaching, how it empowers the individual to develop the capability for independent thinking.
Running throughout the academic year, and contributing 20-credits towards your overall MBA, the Personal & Professional Development (PPD) module offers a unique space for MBA students to focus on their own personal skills development, career plans and aspirations.
Delivery and assessment
You have an active role in your learning experience. Delivery includes lectures, group work, case studies, role-play simulations, workshops, guest speakers, master classes and presentations, followed by a three-month dissertation period. Assessment is by a mixture of examination and coursework (both individual and group-based), including written assignments, class tests and presentations. Successful completion of the taught element of the course leads to the award of the Diploma or allows you to continue for the award of the MBA by completing a 15,000-word dissertation based on an original research question agreed by yourself and your supervisor. The project should reflect your own understanding and knowledge of selected topics learnt during taught modules.
Please view the School web pages for the MBA reading list by clicking on the button below.
The timetable below is a typical example, but your own timetable may be different.
A detailed timetable of activities, covering lectures, student led group work and personal and professional development workshops will be provided at the outset of the course, the example timetable below may be subject to change.
Personal & Professional Development (PPD)
Continual aspects of the PPD are taught throughout the course.
This includes both stand-alone sessions as well as those that are included within the rest of the teaching framework.
The overall assessment accumulated from these aspects within the PPD totals 20 credits.
Part 1 – BUAP001, Part 2 – BUAP014
|1-2||Welcome to SMS & Flying Start Leadership Programme|
|3-4||Strategy & the International Environment - Professor George Burt|
|(students take all four modules during weeks 5-6 and 8-12)|
|Accounting & Finance - Dr Ioannis Tsalavoutas, Dr Dimos Kambouroudis||Managing the Human Resource - Prof Sharon Bolton||Marketing Management - Prof Julie Tinson||Economics for Sustainable Business - Dr Maria Grydaki|
|7||Mid Semester Reading Week|
|Semester Total 60 credits including PPD (Part 1)|
Examinations - December
|1||Personal & Professional Development (PPD) Activities
Two-day Introduction to Research Project Methods
|(students select four from the following six options during weeks 2-12)|
Managing Change, Prof Bernard Burnes
Leadership & Responsible Business, Dr Cecile Rozuel
Managing in Emerging Economies, Dr Swapnesh Masrani
New Venture Creation, Dr Suzanne Mawson
Project Management, Prof John Bowers
Corporate Governance, Prof Graeme Acheson
|4-5||Operations Management, Dr Gerry Edgar|
|6-7||Mid Semester Reading Week plus resit examination period|
|12-13||One-day Research Project Methods contd. Dr Swapnesh Masrani|
|13-14||Strategy for Sustainable Success, Professor George Burt|
|A series of additional Personal & Professional Development Activities will run throughout the semester|
|Semester Total 80 credits including PPD|
Examinations - May
Semester 1: you will study five compulsory modules during this semester, plus your Personal and Professional Development module, which will provide you with a foundation for the remainder of the MBA course:
- Strategy & the International Environment
- Accounting & Finance
- Marketing Management
- Economics for Sustainable Business
- Managing the Human Resource
- Personal and Professional Development (Part 1)
Semester 2: builds upon what has previously been covered in Semester 1 and introduces some of the key elements which make the Stirling MBA stand out from other similar courses. Students will undertake two core modules, four elective* modules, as well as complete the second part of Personal and Professional Development module.
- Strategy for Sustainable Success
- Research Project Methods
- Personal & Professional Development (Part 2)
- Operations Management
Four electives* from:
- Managing of Change*
- Corporate Governance*
- Managing in Emerging Economies*
- Project Management*
- New Venture Creation*
- Leadership & Responsible Business*
Summer: students are required to carry out a significant piece of academic work on their own (MBA Project), utilising the skills and knowledge attained throughout the taught elements of the course.