New Master Degrees Announced In Expansion Of OUBS [Open University Business School] Programme

June 24, 2004

The new qualifications from Europe’s largest business school reflect a growing demand among managers in a broad range of sectors for specialist programmes that adopt the flexible study methods and quality for which the School is renowned.

Available from November 2004 will be:

     Master of Business Administration (Life Sciences) – MBA (LS);

     Master of Public Administration – MPA;

     Master of Science in Human Resource Management – MScHRM;

     Master of Science in International Finance and Management – MScIFM;

     Master of Science in Management and Business Research Methods – MScMBRM.

    Each draws on core modules in management offered by the School, which are supplemented by a suite of modules tailored to the specific professional development needs of its students.

    Dr Keith Dixon, director of the masters programme, said the new courses were an important addition to the School’s already comprehensive portfolio. “The School’s 30,000 current students already acknowledge the benefits offered by our flexible study methods and the opportunity to apply immediately in the workplace skills and knowledge that are newly-developed from studying. The new suite of masters degrees extends that opportunity to new sectors of professionals who are looking to undertake study and professional development while continuing successful careers.”

    The Master of Public Administration (MPA) is tailored to people in managerial and governance roles in a range of sectors, including regional, national and federal government organisations, the uniformed services, and public and non-profit agencies.

    The launch of this degree comes at a time when its universal appeal is growing, but when there are few universities able to offer it at a distance through supported open learning.

    The MBA (Life Sciences) is aimed at strategic decision-makers and those with the potential to hold such positions in the life sciences industry, which ranges from pharmaceutical and biotech enterprises through to private and public healthcare provision. The launch of this degree follows the School’s extensive work with a number of the world’s leading pharmaceutical companies in providing MBA studies for their staff.

    The MSc in International Finance and Management is aimed at those specialising in accounting and finance and who need to respond to the rapid globalisation of business and internationalisation of business accounting. Meanwhile, the programme of study of the MSc in Human Resource Management focuses on the developing role of human resources professionals in influencing and facilitating organisational change, and on the reflective practice that is required for continued professional success.

    For those looking for advanced level preparation in research methods, the MSc in Management and Business Research Methods will be particularly relevant. It is aimed at both those who intend to go on to study for a PhD and at those who work in a commercial, professional or educational environment in which business research forms a significant part of the work.

    News of the programme follows the School’s announcement of plans to enable managers to achieve their OUBS MBA in two-and-a-half years – instead of three – if they wish. Changes in the study format mean that students are able to take a new third compulsory course at the same time as two six-month elective courses rather than three six-month elective courses in succession.
    Would-be students seeking more information about the degrees can call +44 (0)1908 653231 or visit the Qualifications and Courses section of the School’s website at

    The Open University Business School (OUBS) is Europe’s leading business school and the major provider of management development programmes delivered by supported distance learning. It is one of an elite group of UK and European business schools to hold both the prestigious EQUIS quality kitemark, awarded by the European Foundation for Management Development (efmd), and AMBA (the Association of MBAs) accreditation for its MBA. The OUBS has 30,000 students based in the UK and more than 40 countries. Since its inception in 1983, more than 150,000 managers have studied an OUBS course at Certificate, Diploma or MBA level. The School’s website can be found at:

    Neil Coaten
    Open University Media Relations
    +44 (0)1908 652580