Offering a truly transformational experience, the Lancaster full-time MBA is a one-year programme in the UK, in which you live and study alongside experienced and ambitious professionals from all over the world.
Through a mix of learning opportunities – in the classroom and in organisations – you explore what it really means to be a strategic leader, and at the end of the year, you emerge more aware, more confident and more capable, ready for the next step in your career.
Aims and philosophy
Here at Lancaster we are preoccupied with building the 'attitudes of mind' and skills that you will require to be highly effective at the most senior levels of management.
Our MBA programme is unique in its focus. We are focused on developing your practical wisdom – your capacity for judgment in the turbulent and ambiguous world of international business.
This MBA programme, like most MBAs, will equip you with all the necessary language, tools and techniques of business and management: from Economics to Entrepreneurship, from Accounting to Marketing, and from Operations to Finance and to Strategy. You'll gain a deep understanding of the functions of business and the complexity of organisations and markets.
While we ensure you acquire this vital knowledge, our focus is on you developing your capacity to mindfully deploy this learning in the real world in which business is practised. It is a volatile complex world of ambiguity and deep uncertainty – it is, as we say here at Lancaster, a wicked world that is suffused with opportunity and threat, one far removed from the caricature of the textbooks. It is for this reason that we focus on the development of your practical wisdom – your Phronesis as Aristotle termed it – your capacity for judgement. We attack this through our Mindful Manager, Leading Mindfully and Core Capabilities modules, that weave together, throughout the programme, deep philosophical learnings and practical skill development around, and through, four Action-learning opportunities.
If you aspire to lead or build a business you should do a Lancaster MBA!
The Lancaster MBA is accredited by AACSB, EQUIS and the Association of MBAs
There is no soft slow start to the Lancaster MBA. The programme begins on your very first day with an intensive engagement with the Mindful Manager and Core Capabilities modules. Find out more.
A series of compulsory modules run throughout the first two terms.
Those in the Autumn Term are designed to give a thorough grounding for the whole of the Lancaster MBA, providing essential knowledge and skills in areas which may be entirely new to you, or a welcome refresher in more familiar areas. Drawing on this knowledge you also undertake the first of your action learning modules: the Business Management Challenge.
The Spring Term modules have a broadly strategic perspective and include Macroeconomics, Finance, Strategic Management, Global Society and Responsible Management, and . The latter takes you out of the UK on a study tour.
The Spring Term also brings you the second of the action learning modules: the Entrepreneurial Challenge.
The Summer Term starts with the third action learning module, the Consultancy Challenge. This four-week consultancy project has three key parts: an introduction to the consultancy tool-kit, working with a business on the challenge itself, and a presentation and report that is vetted by a consultancy partner. On the Consultancy Challenge, you work in teams on client-based projects to analyse a problem situation and propose how it might be managed.
You select two assessed electives and can take a limited number of additional electives on a non-assessed basis. This gives you scope to broaden your expertise without the need to undertake formal assessment.
This final MBA action learning challenge, which runs for seven weeks from late June, is, for many, the climax to the programme. The Corporate Challenge gives you the chance to undertake a consultancy assignment for a global company, although you can also choose other forms of final project such as an internship. The majority of these challenges are based in London.
Career Advancement Programme
The Career Advancement Programme runs throughout the entire year, with regular presentations and talks, practical workshops and individual careers consultations for all students.
You need the following IELTS score:
Minimum required score:
The IELTS – or the International English Language Test System – tests your English-language abilities (writing, listening, speaking, and reading) on a scale of 1.00–9.00. The minimum IELTS score requirement refers to which Overall Band Score you received, which is your combined average score. Read more about IELTS.
StudyPortals Tip: The UK government has confirmed new English-language testing requirements for visa and immigration purposes. Learn more
To join the Lancaster MBA you must have:
A good first degree.
A minimum of three years' professional work experience since graduation.
Preference will be given to those who can demonstrate that they have strong business experience, and have held significant managerial responsibilities.
Two good references, one from your current employer, and one from someone who can comment on your academic ability.
A suitable level of English language capability is vital.
You must provide evidence of your English language ability. We are looking for an overall IELTS score of 7.0 or above (with at least 6.0 in each element).
You need to ensure that you take your English language test early. If you do not manage to meet our English language requirements you may have the option to join one of our pre-sessional English language courses to get you up to the level needed for the MBA.
We offer two pre-sessional English language programmes: our 10-week programme starts in July and our 4-week programme starts in September. Given the July and September starts for these English language programmes, it is essential that we have your test results as early as possible.
A GMAT evaluation may be required for applicants who have less than four years of postgraduate management/business experience, or do not have a first degree, but have a significant amount of relevant management experience. In certain circumstances candidates who do not fully meet these requirements, but who have other exceptional qualities, may be admitted without a GMAT evaluation, but may be required to successfully complete a Lancaster Admissions Essay.
At least 3 year(s) of work experience are required.
The scholarships available to candidates are substantial, and are awarded on a competitive basis.
The scholarship fund is large but is very quickly depleted as candidates accept their places
If you wish to have the best chance of acquiring and securing a scholarship you must apply early, gain a place on the course, and rapidly pay your deposit.
Five criteria drive their award:
The cohort at Lancaster is deliberately kept small to enable the rich learning process we provide. In a small cohort diversity in all dimensions is paramount – we target a balanced mix of student backgrounds to enhance the learning process. Thriving on diversity is our mantra, and building on experience is our goal.
Scholarships can be up to 50% of programme fees; though they are most usually around 30%.
In addition to our MBA programme scholarships, graduates of Lancaster University are eligible for an additional Alumni Loyalty Scholarship of up to 20% of the programme fees. Usually 10% for undergraduates who graduated with a 2:1, and 20% for those who graduated with a 1st, and 10% for those who graduated with a Masters degree.
To apply for a scholarship you have to prepare a five-slide PowerPoint presentation as part of your application and upload this to the application site.
Your presentation must cover these areas:
Evidence that demonstrates your managerial/leadership qualities and how these will contribute to the Lancaster MBA. This should include a clear description of what you see as your strengths and weaknesses and the personal attributes that set you apart from other applicants.
A description of how the Lancaster MBA will help you to grow as a leader/manager and will contribute to you achieving your career aspirations.
The slides do not have to stand alone — you can include some further detail in the notes. These slides should be uploaded to your application account at least 24 hours before your interview is scheduled to take place.
StudyPortals Tip: Students can search online for independent or external scholarships that can help fund their studies. Check the scholarships to see whether you are eligible to apply. Many scholarships are either merit-based or needs-based.
Testimonial Registration Module
Together with the ISIC Association and British Council IELTS, StudyPortals offers you the chance to receive up to £10000 to expand your horizon and study abroad. We want to ultimately encourage you to study abroad in order to experience and explore new countries, cultures and languages.