The course

Delivery type
Weekends (full-time) / (part-time)
1 year (full-time) / 2 years (part-time)
Intake date
September, January

Study for your MBA in Dubai, the business hub of the Middle East, and graduate from a respected and world-renowned British university.


  • Contact

    Heriot-Watt University Dubai Campus

  • Telephone

    +971 54 302 8505, +971 58 113 8068

  • Email


Edinburgh Business School, Heriot-Watt University has been offering its MBA programme in Dubai for over 10 years. Fully licensed by the Knowledge and Human Development Authority (KHDA), the MBA programme can be completed through a full-time or part-time pathway at Heriot-Watt University’s campus in Dubai.

Both pathways begin in September and January. The full-time programme runs over one year with approximately two courses each term. The part-time programme runs over two years with approximately one course each term. Each year is split into four academic terms.

Why study with us?

We’re a globally recognised institution with an international perspective – and that’s reflected throughout the School. You’ll also share a classroom with like-minded individuals and join our growing network of global business professionals. Not to mention the opportunity to spend a week on our Edinburgh campus. (Flights and accommodation are included in the tuition fees).

The programme consists of seven core courses and two electives. For your electives, you can choose from our extensive range of self-study courses. Please see our course content section below for more details.

We’ll provide all the study materials you need, plus you’ll have access to our student portal.

Tutored interaction for each course will take place over weekends (Fridays and Saturdays), and a large amount of your time will be spent studying independently, with approximately 200 hours per course.

Shaping ‘Women Entrepreneurs’ Scholarship

The 30% Club GCC and Edinburgh Business School are delighted to announce that for a third year, a full tuition scholarship to attend the full or part-time MBA programme at Heriot-Watt University Dubai campus will be offered to an exceptional entrepreneurial woman.

Please note this scholarship is for September 2020 intake only, and the closing date for applications is 30 June 2020.

The scholarship covers the costs of all study materials, teaching sessions and revision seminars for the nine MBA courses required to qualify for the MBA degree, return flights between Dubai and Scotland, accommodation in Scotland whilst on exchange and the graduation fee.

How the programme is delivered

Full-time MBA programme

The full-time MBA programme starts in September and January of each year. The programme runs over one year, and each year is split into four academic terms. Each term you will do two courses.

You will typically attend: 

  • four 2-day seminars (Friday and Saturday) led by an Edinburgh Business School faculty member from the UK or Dubai. The seminars include simulations, case studies and class discussions 
  • two 2-day revision sessions (Friday and Saturday) to prepare you for your exam. These seminars allow a dynamic combination of students with diverse experiences, backgrounds and cultures to share and exchange knowledge in a rich learning environment.

Part-time MBA programme

You can start your part-time MBA journey in January or September. The programme runs over two years, and each year is split into four academic terms. Each term you will do one course.

You will typically attend:

  • two 2-day seminars (Friday and Saturday) led by an Edinburgh Business School faculty member from the UK or Dubai that includes simulations, case studies and involves class discussions 
  • a two-day revision session (Friday and Saturday) to prepare you for your exam; these seminars allow a dynamic combination of students all with diverse experiences, backgrounds and cultures to share and exchange knowledge in a rich learning environment.

Whether you choose to study on the full-time or part-time MBA programme you will also have the opportunity spend a week at our Edinburgh campus. The flights and accommodation are covered by the MBA tuition fee.

MBA with Specialism

MBA with Specialism in Finance
MBA with Specialism in Strategic Planning

MBA with Specialism encompasses the same seven core courses of the standard MBA, but instead of the two elective courses, you take four specialist courses in your specialist subject. Students have the option to study the seven core courses on our campuses, and complete the specialism by studying the four specialist electives by distance learning.

For further information on our Dubai campus MBA programmes please contact our MBA Programme Advisors at or +971 54 302 8505 / +971 58 113 8068.


The Dubai Campus is accredited by the Knowledge and Human Development Authority (KHDA) and fully licensed to teach its degrees in Dubai. All graduates receive a British degree that is accredited by Royal Charter in the UK.

Course content

Throughout your MBA studies, you will have unlimited access to all study materials needed, including interactive course websites. To complete the programme, you must pass seven core courses and two electives. 

MBA core courses

The MBA’s core courses, whether completed part-time or full-time, are:

Delivering Successful Projects 

Delivering Successful Projects equips managers and business professionals with knowledge, understanding and skills to manage projects using integrative concepts, tools and techniques.

The course opens by setting the mind-set for project decision-making and covers the fundamental concepts of the project management discipline and how it assists organisations in materialising their strategic and change objectives.

Topics include:

  • Projects in the organisational context
  • Leadership and behavioural aspects of human resources
  • How the project manager and the project team work
  • Project success criteria 
  • Qualitative and quantitative planning and control processes 
  • Project conclusions, strategic intent, final evaluation and reporting.

The course concludes with a closer look at current topics trending the project management profession, such as the project management office function, ethics, sustainability and agile project management.

Explores the nature of a firm’s response to the challenges of internationalisation by examining the strategic basis, method and direction of international strategies. Examines both multi- and micro-nationals and utilises conventional strategic tools to study international strategies.

Read the full Delivering Successful Projects course syllabus and get an overview of the course content.

Economics for Business

Economics for Business examines how companies compete by developing and understanding the interactions and relationships between theoretical concepts; examining the individual components of strategic management models; and considering how companies may achieve and sustain competitive advantage.

The course starts by outlining fundamental economic concepts and examining the workings of the market system. Different market structures and their impact on organisations are reviewed and the role of government in the economy is examined.

Relevant aspects of the macro-economy are introduced with a focus on business impact and decision-making. This is followed by an exposition of international economic issues.

Topics include:

  • The Role of Economics in Business 
  • The Market Mechanism 
  • Demand 
  • Supply
  • Market Structure
  • Factor Markets 
  • The Role of Government
  • The Macroeconomic Environment
  • Macroeconomic Policy
  • International Trade and Globalisation
  • Research Activity.

The course ends with a research activity that will pull all the strands of the course together, and prepare students fully for the assessment.

Read the full Economics for Business course syllabus and get an overview of the course content.

Financial Decision Making 

Financial decision making aims to provide students with a set of accounting and financial tools that enables them to interpret and critique financial information from a variety of sources, and to make informed and effective financial decisions that directly impact company operations.

The course begins with a closer look at the current financial landscape. It then examines the application of financial and management accounting tools relevant to critical financial decisions, including key performance indicators, breakeven analysis, working capital management techniques and the budgeting process.

This is followed by a consideration of financial management and the decisions faced by organisations on investment (what projects), finance (what type of finance) and dividend (pay or retain) and how an organisation analyses takes action on each of those decisions.

Topics include:

  • The financial landscape  
  • Financial accounting 
  • Working capital management  
  • Management accounting  
  • Budgeting  
  • Financial tools 
  • Capital budgeting and investment appraisal 
  • Financing, payout policy and management.

The course concludes with an introduction to exchange rate and interest rate risk management.

Read the full Financial Decision Making course syllabus and get an overview of the course content.

Leadership Theory and Practice

The course critically examines the concept of leadership in organisations, explores major theoretical developments in how leadership is understood and provides opportunities for managers to reflect on real-life leadership issues. 

The course is divided into eight modules. Having explored what we mean by ‘leadership’ in the first module, the course then considers key developments in leadership theories and how they apply to modern organisations.

Leadership is enacted differently depending on the context, and the course hones in on some example settings for practice, including creative industries and projects, to explore alternative approaches to leading.

The role of leadership in setting and shaping organisational strategy is also explored, and contemporary issues of gender, culture and ethics are discussed. 

Topics include:

  • Introduction to leadership 
  • Traditional and contingency leadership approaches 
  • Modern theories of leadership 
  • Post-heroic leadership 
  • Leadership in contexts 
  • Leadership, gender and culture 
  • Leadership and ethics 
  • Developing leadership 

The course ends by considering how leaders and leadership can be developed and provides insights into current trends and future directions. 

Read the full Leadership Theory and Practice course syllabus and get an overview of the course content.

People, Work and Organisations

Our People, Work and Organisations course aims for students to develop a detailed appreciation of factors influencing how people behave at work and how these link to performance. 

The course focuses on understanding individual differences, how these differences affect group dynamics and how organisational factors affect individual behaviour. At its core, the course aims to equip students with the skills and knowledge to positively impact on individual, team and organisational performance in a variety of dynamic organisational contexts.

Topics include:

  • Understanding behaviour in organisations 
  • Individual differences
  • Motivation and engagement
  • Work group dynamics 
  • Power, politics and conflicts 
  • Designing effective organisations
  • Organisational culture
  • Organisational change.

The course concludes with a detailed case study that allows students to draw on their knowledge of organisational behaviour and recommend interventions to improve performance. Throughout the course, students are encouraged to think critically about their role as managers and to reflect on their practice in light of relevant theory.  

Read the full People, Work and Organisations course syllabus and get an overview about the course content.

Strategic Marketing

Our strategic marketing course aims to provide students with the necessary tools and frameworks to enable them to make proactive marketing decisions. The philosophy underlying this course is that marketing-oriented companies put customers first, are geared for long-term success and that this orientation must be championed by top management and infused throughout the whole organisation.

Strategic marketing requires knowledge, skills and competencies in a range of techniques such as strategic analysis and planning, implementation – via a number of integrated and synergistic marketing functions and activities – and marketing control, aided by an array of marketing metrics and digital developments. 

Topics include:

  • Marketing management for a turbulent era 
  • Marketing fit with corporate and business strategies 
  • Marketing environmental insights 
  • Customer insights and customer connections 
  • Marketing insights for demand measurement  
  • Segmentation and target marketing  
  • Branding and positioning 
  • Marketing strategies for competitive and market scenarios 
  • The integrated marketing mix 
  • Organising, planning, delivering and measuring market performance.

This course aims to provide students with a strong grasp of both the strategic elements of establishing a long-term customer orientation and the operational techniques that are required of marketing managers to implement a strategic marketing orientation successfully. 

Read the full Strategic Marketing course syllabus and get an overview of the course content.

Developing and Executing Strategy

Successful business planning needs objectives to be set and strategies to be created, implemented and measured. This course covers the core areas of strategic management and uses the general management setting to integrate ideas across the core disciplines covered in other MBA core courses. Developing and Executing Strategy begins by examining the evolution of management and academic thinking around strategy and strategic management over the past 50 years, reviews the diversity of contemporary strategy theory and practice and examines the role of strategy in the management of different types of organisations.

The course then examines a variety of aspects of strategy, such as strategic intent, analysis, strategic options and implementation. At each stage the links with other management disciplines, such as leadership, organisational behaviour, economics, marketing and finance are considered. Finally an integrative framework for strategic decision-making is presented, which facilitates a holistic approach to complex business and management issues.

Topics include:

  • Introduction to Strategy and Strategists
  • Strategic Intent
  • Strategic Issue Diagnosis 
  • Interpreting and Analysing the Environment
  • Analysing the Organisation
  • Generating, Selecting and Evaluating Strategic Options
  • Strategy Implementation and Practice

The course encourages students to think and operate at the strategic level in a range of dynamic settings through integration of ideas across core business disciplines.

MBA elective courses

Entry requirements

Admission to the MBA programme is by application and acceptance. 

You're expected to have:

  • A recognised first- or second-class honours degree, or a qualification deemed to be equivalent by Heriot-Watt University
  • A minimum of two years' post-qualifying full-time professional work experience.

English language requirements

Where English was not the medium of instruction at Undergraduate studies, applicants must demonstrate English language proficiency equivalent to IELTS 6.5 (with all elements passed at 6.0 or above). Documentary evidence from the University where the candidate had studied their bachelor degree will be required to state that the medium of learning and teaching throughout their years of study was English.

Fees and funding

  • Full-time: AED 100,000*
  • Part-time: AED 100,000*

* All tuition fees inclusive of VAT

For further information on our fees and payment options, please contact our MBA programme advisors at

You can also visit our scholarships page to view the range of scholarships and discounts the University has to offer.

Scholarships and bursaries

Edinburgh Business School - Shaping 'Women Entrepreneurs' Scholarship

The 30% Club GCC and Edinburgh Business School are delighted to announce that a full tuition scholarship to attend the full or part-time MBA programme at the Heriot-Watt University Dubai campus will be offered to an entrepreneurial woman.


You must have received and accepted an unconditional offer of a place on the full or part-time MBA programme and paid the deposit, before a scholarship application can be submitted.

Amount of award

Up to AED 100,000

No of awards: 1



Opening date

Opening date for applications is

Closing date

Closing date for applications is

The Heriot-Watt Dubai Community Award

If you accept your offer of a place on the full-time or part-time MBA programme at the Dubai Campus and pay your deposit on or before 30 June 2020 you will receive a discount of AED 5,000 reduction on the balance of the MBA fee.


If you have gained a qualification (whether at degree level or through a professional body) in a relevant subject prior to the start of your Edinburgh Business School programme, we may be able to reward this hard work with an exemption from core and elective courses.

Contact our MBA programme advisors at to check your eligibility.