man using laptop

Master of Business Administration

Skip to section

    Key information

    Mode of delivery
    Start date
    Open enrolment


    Contact our enquiries team

    Contact us


    Our flexible, online MBA from Edinburgh Business School is designed to provide you with a comprehensive understanding of core business principles and strategies to help you make more informed decisions as a manager, leader or entrepreneur.

    During your studies, you’ll cover essential areas from leadership strategies to project management to financial decision making, setting you up for long-term success.

    You will study nine courses, providing you with a comprehensive understanding of the key management concepts, techniques and practices needed to get ahead in your career. You’ll be equipped with insights into dynamic international business environments as you build essential skills in critical thinking, decision-making, complex problem solving, negotiation, marketing, finance and leadership.

    Embrace the freedom to tailor your education to suit your needs. Gain practical, career ready MBA skills sought by today’s employers. Start your MBA journey today.

    Degree duration

    Our MBA programmes are available to study on-demand, at your own pace, from wherever you are in the world. You can enrol at any time, begin your studies when you are ready, and pick up courses as you go – meaning you can structure your studies in a way that fits around your life. Each individual course requires approximately 200 hours of study, which also includes time to complete course activities and practice assignments. On average, it takes approximately two years to complete a full MBA with a specialism, but it can be completed faster or over a longer period - you can choose your own pace. Throughout the programme, regardless of your schedule, you will be able to learn alongside a diverse and global community of students and professionals and interact with peers and tutors in forums.

    How you'll learn

    You will have access to a virtual learning environment (VLE) that houses all your course content and acts as your online campus. Tools to track your progress through the course materials will help keep you on track with your learning. Other online resources such as quizzes and assessment practice are available in the VLE. Wherever you’re studying from, you’ll have access to collaborative discussion forums where you can engage with your fellow students around the world. With guidance from your experienced tutors, you will critically engage with your course materials and discuss how they apply to real-world business challenges.

    The university provides a range of valuable resources to support you in your academic journey. This includes our study skills support, which aims to enhance your learning strategies and techniques. Whether it's time management, note-taking, or exam preparation, we offer workshops, tutorials, and online materials to help you develop effective study habits. You can also connect with fellow students and receive additional support through our very popular Facebook community.

    Live online tuition

    You can choose to supplement your independent learning by enrolling in live online sessions led by experienced tutors. These sessions help you further contextualise your learning, prepare for your final assessment, and ensure your success on the programme.

    Meet our students

    When you study online with Edinburgh Business School, you join a diverse and global community of over 50,000 motivated individuals making an impact in the world and workplace.

    Your personalised MBA

    The MBA is part of a portfolio of flexible MBA programmes that are tailored for working professionals. Learn more about this unique programme from Edinburgh Business School, which allows you to stack courses together in a way that works around your life, matches your career goals and allows you to build credit towards your qualification, course by course.

    MBA Hub

    How our online MBA works

    Meet Asif Gul, an online MBA graduate from Oman.

    Course content

    Year 1

    Our online MBA offers unparalleled flexibility, allowing you to study at your own pace and stack courses together to seamlessly build credit towards your qualification. Select from courses that interest you, position you to have an impact, and align with your career path.  

    During this programme you’ll progress through nine courses: six MBA core courses and three optional courses (totaling 190 credits). You are required to successfully complete and pass all nine courses to be awarded your MBA.

    Download the prospectus for a full curriculum outline.

    Degree structure

    Core courses
    • People, Work and Organisations
    • Leadership Theory and Practice
    • Delivering Successful Projects
    • Developing and Executing Strategy
    • Financial Decision Making
    • Strategic Marketing
    Optional courses
    • Advanced Financial Decision Making
    • Big Data Analytics for Business
    • Business Analytics
    • Business Consultancy
    • Business Negotiation
    • Economics for Business
    • Entrepreneurial Venturing
    • Entrepreneurship and Creativity
    • Financial Derivatives
    • Global Purchasing and Supply
    • Global Strategy Analysis
    • Green and Sustainable Logistics
    • Humanitarian Logistics
    • Lending and Credit Risk Analysis
    • Logistic Operations: Freight Transport and Warehousing
    • Managing Financial Risk
    • Mergers, Acquisitions and Restructuring
    • Network Analysis
    • Operations Management
    • Performance Management for Business
    • Research Methods for Business
    • Strategic Change Management
    • Strategies for Managing Supply Chains

    Detailed degree guide

    Understanding, Knowledge and Cognitive Skills

    Participants will achieve the following learning outcomes at programme level:

    • Develop a detailed and critical awareness of relevant concepts, theories and principles in subjects fundamental to management
    • Demonstrate leadership in professional situations with the ability to conceptualise, analyse and resolve complex problems and issues in business and management
    • Gain professional level insights into dynamic international business environments and propose appropriate courses of action for organisations to deal with and take advantage of rapid external change
    • Through synthesis of ideas across diverse management disciplines, critically evaluate complex situations and propose innovative and sustainable solutions to the strategic and operational challenges that organisations face

    Scholarship, Enquiry and Research (Research Informed Learning)

    The learning model and curriculum actively encourages students to develop and apply their learning to their own professional experience and to wider developments in business and management.

    Approaches to Teaching and Learning

    The Edinburgh Business School MBA is an applied programme aimed at working professionals, providing them the opportunity to reflect on their own practice using contemporary theory in the management field. The programme is designed at the intersection of theory and practice and courses are oriented towards exploration of real-life examples and case studies.

    The MBA is entirely modular and delivery is flexible, operating a learning rather than a teaching model and each course is designed for self-study. All courses are designed around a comprehensive online offering that contains all necessary learning materials and guidance for students to successfully complete their studies. A key part of this is the opportunity for students to engage with each other as part of a global multicultural learning community.

    In addition to the online offering, different study modes offer a variety of value-added services to students. These include access to live cohort-based tuition on-campus or with an Approved Learning Partner and access to synchronous online tuition for all students across all modes.

    The Executive MBA study route offered in Edinburgh from September 2021 is designed for mid-career professionals and runs part-time over 24 months. The programme involves a mix of online study, intensive course-based workshops and personal development planning, culminating in a capstone business project linked to the student's own organisation.

    The MBA is available in languages other than English via selected collaborative partnerships. Non-English provision is detailed under programme code H149-MLN.

    Assessment Policies

    With the exception of the two entrepreneurship courses and the project, all courses are examined by written examination. Assessment includes objective questions (where appropriate), case studies and essays.  All courses are examined three times per year aligned to Heriot-Watt University's two semesters and the summer period.

    The pass mark for all courses is 50%. A candidate must pass all required course units to be eligible for an award. Failing candidates are allowed a single resit in each course.

    Awards with Distinction will be made to candidates completing an award with average marks of 70% and over with no examination failures. Awards with Merit will be made to candidates completing an award with average marks between 60% and 69% with no examination failures.

    Assessment for H11PJ, H11EN, H11EV, H11BP is by 100% coursework. One re-assessment opportunity is permitted (coursework re-submission).

    The MBA core courses and selected electives are available for examination in Chinese and Russian via collaborative partners, detailed under programme code H149-MLN.

    Professor Heather McGregor
    "When joining Edinburgh Business School, you join a network of industry professionals, top academics and people driven to succeed. We are here to prepare you to enter competitive job markets, excel professionally or even start a new business."
    Professor Heather McGregor,
    Provost and Vice Principal, Heriot-Watt University Dubai

    Fees and funding

    Tuition fees

    Additional fee information

    The MBA degree comprises of nine courses. You can study on a course-by-course basis and pay as you learn, or enrol in multiple courses at once.

    All course fees include one assessment attempt. Each attempt after this point will be charged at £160.

    If you want to enrol in live tuition for any or all of course courses, you can opt to at an additional charge. For more information, download the programme prospectus.

    Additional information is available within our Frequently Asked Questions.

    Edinburgh Business School is committed to ensuring our courses and programmes remain accessible to students no matter where they live. Therefore, we offer an Emerging Economies Scholarship in certain areas.

    Check if you are eligible for an Emerging Fees Scholarship.

    Scholarships and bursaries

    Each year Edinburgh Business School at Heriot-Watt University makes available a number of scholarships and discounts to help students to achieve one of our awards.

    20% Fee Reduction

    Students on our online Edinburgh Business School programmes benefit from a 20% fee reduction when purchasing all courses upfront for their programme of choice.

    Take advantage and enrol today.

    Alumni Discount

    If you are a Heriot-Watt alumnus, you qualify for 20% off your programme fees. For more information on how to claim for your alumni discount contact

    Entry requirements

    Typically you will hold a recognised first or second class honours degree, or equivalent professional qualification. Students whose native language is not English and who have not been educated previously in the English language must provide evidence of their English language proficiency.

    However, at EBS we are proud to make transformative education accessible to diverse communities and individuals across the world, therefore, we offer a performance-based admissions pathway onto our MSc and MBA programmes. This means that we provide a pathway to entry into our MSc and MBA programmes, even if you don’t meet the suggested entry requirements above. You will simply be required to enrol in and successfully pass three courses on your desired MSc or MBA programme (of which one must be a core course) before progressing to complete the full qualification.

    What does this mean? No matter your pathway to entry (direct or through performance-based admission), there is no need to complete an application form before enrolling. To begin your journey with us, simply click on 'Enrol Now’, follow the instructions to enter your personal details, select your desired courses, and make your initial payment.

    Find more information in the FAQs.

    English language requirements

    If English is not the applicant’s first language a minimum of IELTS 6.5 or equivalent is required with all elements passed at 6.0 or above.

    Applicants who have previously successfully completed courses delivered in the medium of English language may be considered and will be required to provide documentary evidence of this. Examples would be secondary school education or undergraduate degree course. A minimum of at least one year of full time study (or equivalent) in the medium of English language will be required.

    We offer a range of English language courses to help you meet the English language requirement prior to starting your master’s course:

    • 20 weeks English (for IELTS of 5.0 with no skill lower than 4.5)
    • 14 weeks English (for IELTS of 5.0 with minimum of 5.0 in writing and no skill lower than 4.5)
    • 10 weeks English (for IELTS of 5.5 with no skill lower than 5.0)
    • 6 weeks English (for IELTS 5.5 with no skill lower than 5.5)

    Additional information

    Rewarding previous study

    Edinburgh Business School recognises that some students entering our online MBA or MSc programmes will have completed prior academic study in subjects that align closely to certain EBS courses. Therefore, you may be eligible to be granted exemption for a maximum of 20 credits. Find more information in the FAQs.

    Assessment and award

    All courses are assessed by a Final Online Assessment. Your final course assessment is designed to help you to critically apply what you’ve learnt.

    You are given a 24-hour window to complete the assessment. You are able to sit your assessment in the comfort of your own space, from wherever you are in the world and will be allowed to access to your course materials during the assessment.
    Assessments are conducted at three points in the year: April-May, August, December.

    Upon successful completion of all three courses and the final online assessments, you will be eligible to receive a Postgraduate Certificate in Business Administration


    Heriot-Watt University has been named as first in the United Kingdom for producing CEO’S*, we have a reputation for  producing high calibre, employable students. Whether you're an early career professional looking to stand out in the job market or an established professional aiming for leadership roles, this MBA programme offers you the opportunity to lead and make an impact in a variety of roles, across sectors.

    Additionally, the online, flexible format of the programme allows you to learn while you work. This means that you can apply your learning immediately in your current job, providing real-time value to your organisation. If you’re just starting your career, it means you can build your work experience while you study. You will also get access to The Careers and Graduate Futures Service to support your career planning.

    *Novuna Business Cash Flow 2023

    "As a significant leader in employability, Heriot-Watt produces high-calibre students who are fully equipped for future success."
    Tom Kneen,
    CTO Office, Cisco UKI

    Why Heriot-Watt?

    Flexibility and affordability

    Study at a time and pace that suits you, and even while you work. HW Online offers pay-as-you-study courses and fees inclusive of exams and study materials, meaning you can focus on success, not extra costs.

    Online tutoring and revision

    We offer live tutoring and revision sessions with highly experienced tutors from our global network of teaching partners. You can choose the session which best suits your needs, such as time of day, duration and structure.

    Your career

    Employers around the world actively seek out our graduates because they are work-ready. All our degrees are career-focused and relevant to the needs of industry. Around 95% of our students are in employment or further study within six months of graduating.

    Online events

    We host online events throughout the year, giving you the opportunity to speak to our academic teaching staff, meet students, find out what it is like to study using our Virtual Learning Environment (VLE) and discover how to enrol.

    Lifelong connections

    Upon completing your studies you will automatically join the UK's oldest alumni association The Watt Club, with 147k members worldwide.

    Study options Malaysia - MBA Master of Business Administration

    Our MBA Master of Business Administration is also available to study at our Malaysia campus.

    Study options Dubai - MBA Master of Business Administration

    Our MBA Master of Business Administration is also available to study at our Dubai campus.

    Get degree news and updates

    Subscribe now

    Related programmes