Postgraduate Factfile: MBA Business Management MBA

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Course at a glance

Mode of study: Full Time (1 year)
Start date: September 2014 and January 2015

  • Apply your learning to ‘real world’ situations through the use of case studies provided by major organisations
  • The Liverpool Business School has an excellent reputation for external research and collaborative ventures with partners across a range of sectors in the UK and internationally
  • Close links with business and employers
  • Support available for students wishing taking optional work placements

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Course overview

The Master in Business Administration programme will challenge your intellect, advance your managerial skills and boost your career prospects. You will gain an understanding of financial management, economics, operations management, research, law, HR, marketing and strategy. By linking these specialist areas, you will gain insights into how organisations function while also developing your skills in leadership, creativity and problem solving - all of which are essential for effective management. Furthermore, these skills are transferable across many industries and sectors.

This programme will equip you with the knowledge and skills to make an immediate contribution to your organisation. Taking an international and interdisciplinary approach to learning, you will gain an understanding of the key areas of international business and management and the way in which these key areas impact upon each other. Throughout the programme, you will have the opportunity to apply your learning to ‘real world’ situations through the use of case studies provided by major organisations.

MBA Business Management students have the opportunity to undertake valuable work experience as part of the 15 credit ‘Experience through internship’ option module in Semester 2. Organised through Liverpool Business School’s Employability Support Unit, students can expect to have their interests and skills matched with a broad range of work placements on offer, while receiving advice on how to develop their CVs, write impactful cover letters and prepare for interviews.

What will you study?

Semester 1 core modules

Managing the International Organisation (30 credits): This module introduces you to the major issues of managing business resources, including people, information, knowledge and technology. The module takes a multidisciplinary approach to managing the resources within the global environment.

You will critically evaluate the strategic importance of resources, core competencies and dynamic capabilities and evaluate how they may be used by companies in an attempt to develop a sustainable competitive advantage. You will also critically explore the role of leaders and managers in bringing about transformational and transactional change within international organisations.

The outline syllabus for the module covers:

  • Using information for competitive advantage
  • Organisational structure, culture and processes
  • Technology development and application
  • Knowledge management and the learning organisation
  • Enterprise-wide information and systems
  • IHRM challenges
  • Global digital business and its architectures
  • Intangible resources (people, data, information, knowledge and systems) and international business strategy

Managing Finance and Market Awareness (15 credits): This module integrates the study of the economic, marketing and financial contexts of business and enables you to gain skills and confidence in critically evaluating and interpreting data in these fields through evaluating economic measures undertaken by institutions globally; analysing the strengths and weaknesses of economic and financial tools and their appropriateness for different situations; interpreting financial reports; appraising the performance of public and private sector organisations and the application of the marketing mix.

The outline syllabus of the module covers:

  • The economic context to marketing and finance
  • The impact of the recession on business internationally
  • Marketing approaches, mix, strategy and implementation
  • The presentation and analysis of financial information
  • Key performance indicators
  • Investment appraisal and medium/long term strategy
  • Costing and management accounting
  • Pricing products and services

Managing Operations for Market Performance (15 credits): In this module you investigate the strategic, tactical and operational context of operations management and its relationship to market performance. You evaluate the significance of design, location, layout, supply chain management, scheduling and quality. You have the opportunity to select and apply established operations management tools and evaluate the results for optimising market advantage.

The outline syllabus for the module covers:

  • Design of products and services
  • Queuing theory and systems, facility layout principles
  • Process flow charting
  • Operations strategy
  • Capacity planning and supply chain management
  • Operations service systems
  • Continuous improvement
  • TQM and its limitations
  • Operations resilience and risk management

Semester 2 core modules

Managing Strategy (15 credits): This module introduces you to the higher level strategy process in a range of organisational contexts and assists you in acquiring practical experience in dealing with strategic issues. You will learn how to appraise and critique the role of objectives and stakeholder theory in the strategic management process, evaluate the key models and tools of strategic analysis and the main approaches to the achievement of competitive advantage.

You will have the opportunity to develop strategic plans that demonstrate an appreciation of structural, cultural and behavioural issues involved in successful change.

The outline syllabus for the module covers:

  • The nature and scope of managing strategy
  • Strategic decision making styles and processes
  • Macro and micro environmental analysis
  • Strategic capability analysis
  • Role of market positions and resource capability in delivering and sustaining competitive advantage
  • Corporate strategy for multi-business firms
  • Implementation and managing strategic change

Managing Business Research (15 credits): This module provides you with a conceptual framework from which research philosophies, strategies and methods associated with business management can be critically reviewed. It also helps you to develop your research competencies, in particular those relating to data collection and analysis, that enable you to design, undertake and evaluate independent research in an organisational setting.

You have the opportunity to examine, plan and evaluate issues surrounding qualitative and quantitative research processes for business; examine the relationships between research philosophy, science and empiricism; develop skills using anthropological, ethnographic, phenomenological and positivist approaches and critically evaluate research design.

The outline syllabus for this module covers:

  • Kuhn’s analysis, paradigms, Popperian critique, interpretive and realist approaches
  • Critical theory and ethics of research
  • Qualitative approaches and use of NVivo for analysing text
  • Data – primary and secondary sources, data types, sampling procedures and methods
  • Quantitative approaches – use of SPSS and hypothesis testing
  • Managing the research process – timescales and project management

Option modules

In addition to your core modules you will undertake two 15 credit option modules. These options are chosen during your first semester where staff will present their specialist areas and engage in a Q&A session with you to discuss issues such as content, assessment, skills and potential career paths.

We offer a range of subjects according to student demand:

  • Experience through internship
  • Entrepreneurship and Innovation
  • Project Services
  • Business Analysis
  • Global Corporate Finance and Governance
  • Marketing Management
  • Managing HR Strategy

The research stage

The Managing Business Research module prepares you for the next stage of programme. In this independent study stage of your MBA you are tasked with preparing a 20,000 word dissertation that applies managerial concepts and research techniques to a significant organisational issue or problem.

You will select, evaluate and apply critical management thinking to this problem or issue and support that evaluation with appropriate literature; synthesis information and data to arrive at a coherent conclusion and draw  recommendations from your work.

Working in conjunction with a supervisor, you will refine the precise topic for research, building on the research proposal explored in Managing Business Research you will develop your critical skills as a researcher, both with regard to methodological justification and subject specific issues.

A small selection of recent dissertation titles below will give you an indication of the type of projects we have supervised:

  • Ethics in Financial Reporting: a comprehensive study of Infosys
  • Social media as a B2C marketing tool in the UK
  • Online shopping in suburban communities in Malaysia
  • Culture in multinational marketing for Indian companies
  • Channel management and strategies for Sony Ericsson/Nokia Siemens
  • Is Islamic banking a viable alternative to conventional banking in the UK?
  • Gaining competitive advantage in SME retail pharmacies
  • Factors affecting online consumer behaviour in Qatar
  • The impact of service quality on brand perception: a study of RBS
  • Proximity marketing, a path to the future?
  • Employee retention in the hospitality industry: Radission Hotels UK and Ireland
  • Job satisfaction and Motivation in Indian Info Tec Ltd
  • Key Factors affecting consumer awareness and purchasing behaviour towards Fairtrade food products
  • Factors influencing ethnic entrepreneurship: focus on
  • Kurdish entrepreneurs in Liverpool
  • The effectiveness of customer relationship management strategies in achieving customer loyalty at the Gallery Restaurant Liverpool
  • Supply chain management in the food industry: a study of Chinese SMEs in Liverpool
  • Graduate employability in SMEs in Teneriffe
  • The examination of consumer decision making in the context of fast fashion: case study of Primark, Liverpool

About the teaching team

The MBA teaching team adopts an integrated approach to the teaching of the key business disciplines providing tomorrow’s managers with the knowledge, understanding and skills to operate as effective decision makers in a variety of roles. Academics have impressive profiles as active researchers, international journal editors and renowned textbook writers as well as bringing a wealth of industry experience directly into the classroom. In addition to the skills and experience of the team, the programme attracts a variety of guest lecturers from the private and public sectors, bringing a professional perspective on how multinational and small and medium enterprises can maintain competitive advantage.

The Liverpool Business School is a forward looking, professional business school, active globally as well as locally. We maintain close links with business and place students at the centre of all that we do. The programme team’s research interests reflect the wide-range of knowledge and skills that constitute MBA study. Staff are actively involved in management consultancy, risk management, entrepreneurship and innovation, strategic management, operational performance, global corporate finance and governance, information systems, educational technologies, intercultural communication and international negotiating.

Our team is highly regarded and sought after as supervisors at master’s and doctorate levels. The School has a strong reputation in external research and in collaborative ventures with partners across a range of sectors in the UK and internationally.

Meet a member of the team

Dr Philip Kelly is research-active academic, presently supervising five PhD students and a number of MBA dissertations. Phil is widely published with interests in management generally and group work and culture in particular.

As a high impact author, Phil’s bestselling management text book, Management Theory and Practice, has been cited by 788 scholars in their respective publications. He is presently writing the 8th edition.

Recent books and papers include:

  • Kelly PP and Ashwin A. 2013. The Business Environment. Hampshire, UK: Cengage Learning
  • Kelly PP and Moogan Y. 2012. Culture Shock and Higher Education Performance: Implications for Teaching. Higher Education Quarterly, vol. 66(1), 24-46
  • Cole GA and Kelly P. 2011. Management Theory and Practice. (7th ed.). UK: International Thomson Business Press.
  • Kelly P. 2009. International Business and Management. International Thomson Business Press
  • Kelly PP. 2009. Conceptualising business risk culture: a study of risk thinking and practice in contemporary dynamic organisations. International Journal of Business Continuity and Risk Management, vol. 1(1), 19-37
  • Kelly PP. 2009. Group Work and Multicultural Management Education Programmes. Journal of Teaching in International Business, vol. 20(1), 80-102
  • Kelly PP. 2008. Achieving desirable group-work outcomes through the group allocation process. Team Performance Management, vol. 14(1/2), 22-38.

How will I be assessed?

The MBA has a range of assessment methods designed to reflect the learning outcomes of each module, the particular content and skills being taught and as far as possible, to mirror the activities and approach of the real needs of the world of work. In addition to oral presentation skills, writing reports, analysing case study data and completing business research, simulation exercises using the most up-to-date technology give the opportunity to demonstrate business acumen at both operational and strategic levels. The Managing Strategy module also assesses performance through a traditional exam.

What do past and present students say about the course?

Current MBA stduent 31-year-old Ammar Al-Waeel from Yemen arrived in Liverpool as a Chevening Scholar. Describing his experience on the MBA, Ammar said:

“The MBA prepares you to be more analytical and to develop problem solving skills. It prepares you to start your own business as you study finance, HR, operations, marketing and strategy which are all very important when running your own business and to be a successful entrepreneur.”

Steven Lim Chin Yee, 32, from Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia graduated with Distinction on the MBA in 2013. He also received the Chartered Management Institute Leadership Award for his work as a student representative. Discussing his MBA exprience after graduating Stephen said:

"The MBA mostly met my expectations particularly the real-life business simulation tools which were used to examine case studies around current business issues. These helped stimulate my interest in learning and I gained knowledge at the same time. I believe that the quality of dissertation supervisor is higher than in other institutions, due to the smaller student groups, which allows for personalised advice and more contact time."

Rachel Higham, a current MBA student said:

“The MBA at LJMU is a highly diverse degree giving me valuable knowledge in core management areas such as finance, marketing, operations and HR. The course provides students with a valuable insight into practical working life and helps prepare all students for the workplace. The course has wide range of students from all over the world bringing together culture and experiences which creates a unique, multicultural learning environment for all students on the course.”

Why study this course at LJMU?

You will be taught in the £38million Redmonds Building, in the heart of Liverpool city centre's Knowledge Quarter. Academics teaching on the programme have a wide range of research interests and professional experiences. Throughout the programme, you will have the opportunity to apply your learning to ‘real world’ situations through the use of case studies provided by major organisations.

Participants on the MBA often enjoy the mix of fellow students who study on the programme - from seasoned professionals returning to education, to new graduates and students from overseas, this mix enriches the overall student experience.

Introduction to the School

Liverpool Business School (LBS) is a forward looking, professional, business school, active globally as well as locally. We maintain close links with business and place students at the centre of all that we do.
We offer a diverse range of high quality undergraduate, postgraduate and research based programmes covering all aspects of business and management.  With expertise particularly in  finance, marketing, public relations, information management and human resources, LBS has a strong reputation in external research and in collaborative ventures with partners across a range of sectors in the UK and internationally.
Whether you have just finished your degree, are currently in employment or are returning to study after a break, our  postgraduate and professional programmes will enhance your academic and professional development.

Staff research interests

The programme team’s research interests reflect the wide-range of knowledge and skills that constitute MBA study. We are actively involved in management consultancy, risk management, entrepreneurship and innovation, strategic management, operational performance, global corporate finance and governance, information systems, educational technologies, intercultural communication and international negotiating. Our team is highly regarded and sought after as supervisors at masters and doctorate levels.

Employment and careers

As a postgraduate student you will be able to take full advantage of the extensive range of advice and guidance available in our World of Work Careers Centre, including our Ready for Work training courses, which cover everything from interview skills to preparing for assessment centre tests.

LJMU also has a dedicated Centre for Entrepreneurship, offering business advice and start-up funding, to students and graduates interested in setting up their own companies or working freelance.

Map of UK

International applicants are required to demonstrate equivalent qualifications to the standard requirements for entry when applying for courses at LJMU.

Students must also demonstrate a proficiency in communicating through English, for example via an IELTS tests or equivalent.

Please note: UK visa restrictions mean that international students are only permitted to study on a full-time basis.

Please contact LJMU’s International Team by visiting for more information and advice.


LJMU has launched a range of generous international scholarships for students enrolling at the University.

These prestigious scholarships take the form of tuition fee waivers and are available for outstanding international students applying for taught postgraduate programmes and research degrees.

You will need to complete an additional application form in order to be considered for these scholarships. Full eligibility criteria and the online application form are available here:

Applications for these scholarships are welcomed from:

  • new international applicants
  • current LJMU international students hoping to progress onto postgraduate study at the University
  • LJMU international alumni

English for Postgraduate courses bursary

A bursary will be available for students who must complete the six week English for Postgraduate Studies course to improve their IELTS score by 0.5 prior to enrolling on their postgraduate taught or research degree at LJMU.

This bursary take the form of a tuition fee waiver, which will be deducted from your tuition fee when you enrol on your degree programme. You do not need to complete the online scholarship form in order to receive this bursary. Please note: If you are awarded this bursary you are not eligible to apply for an international scholarship.

English language requirements


6.0 (Min. 5.5 in each component)



Entry requirements

Our philosophy enables us to accept a wide range of applicants, the key criteria being that all candidates must demonstrate an ability to benefit from, and contribute to, the programme.

Given the general nature of assessment, your qualification and experience will normally match the criteria below:

  • A good honours degree from a recognised University or equivalent awarding institution; or
  • A professional qualification recognised as equivalent to the above; or
  • An award that the university has agreed to accept as equivalent to a degree.
  • Where English is not your first language or your first degree was not wholly taught and assessed in English, you need an IELTS score of 6.0 (with a minimum of 6.5 in the Writing component).
  • It is desirable that you have post graduation work experience but it is not essential.

You need to complete an application form and provide evidence of previous qualifications. Please ensure that you take time over your application. Provide us with a clearly written form and a statement of purpose which also details any work experience you have. Include copies of your qualifications and marks and your English language certificate if needed. Also include academic references.

Fees information

Tuition fees for full-time home and EU students for the academic year 2014-2015 are £5,000.   

Tuition fees for International students for the academic year 2014-2015 are £12,000.  Students residing in the Isle of Man, Guernsey and Jersey are classified as international students for fee purposes. 

Home and EU student fees can be paid in full or by instalments throughout the academic year. 

International students fees are payable in full on registration or you can choose to pay 50% with the balance paid in full four months later. 

Further information for international students about finance, fees and scholarships can be found here.

Financial support

Tuition fees

All full and part-time students enrolled on postgraduate taught programmes at LJMU are liable to pay an annual tuition fee. You can opt to pay your tuition fees in full at the start of each academic year or pay by instalments. If you need advice about how you will pay your tuition fees, please talk to LJMU’s Student Funding Team as soon as possible:, 0151 0151 231 3153/3154.

Sources of funding

LJMU Alumni Award

Final year undergraduates and alumni of the University are eligible to apply for a 15% reduction in their postgraduate tuition fees if they choose to progress onto a higher degree programme at LJMU. Both Home and international LJMU students and alumni can apply for this award (subject to eligibility criteria*).  Please go to for more details.

Postgraduate International Scholarships

LJMU offers scholarships for international applicants accepted onto taught masters programmes (excluding distance learning programmes) and research degrees. Current LJMU international students and alumni interested in pursuing postgraduate study and research at the University are eligible to apply for these scholarships along with new applicants. For further details, go to:  

English for Postgraduate Studies Bursary

A Bursary is also available for international students who need to improve their IELTS score prior to enrolling on their postgraduate course or research programme at the University. This course is run by LJMU’s International Study Centre ( For further details, go to:   

Earn While You Learn

Working while you study means you may be able to pay for your course without taking out any further loans or at least reducing the amount you need to borrow. Working while you study also gives you the skills valued by employers, such as managing your workload and prioritising your time.

LJMU’s Vacancy website ( can help you find graduate vacancies, sandwich/industrial placements, internships/ summer work, part-time jobs, volunteering opportunities and work-based learning placements. Over 1,000 local and regional employers regularly list opportunities on the website.

Professional and Career Development Loans (PCDL)

Many students fund their postgraduate studies via Professional and Career Development Loans. This is a bank loan which you will have to pay back once you’ve completed the course. However, while you are studying any interest on the loan will be paid for you by the Skills Funding Agency. PCDLs worth between £300 and £10,000 are available for eligible postgraduates to fund up to two years of study (three if the course includes work experience). The loan is split into course fees and living costs. Go to for more details.

Employer sponsorship

Some organisations and companies fund the cost of postgraduate studies for their employees as they recognise the value of having well qualified staff. Check out our courses and see if there are any on offer that could enhance your current career. Remember, employer support doesn’t always have to be financial; it can take other forms too, such as flexible working arrangements, day release and time in lieu of study.

Support for disabled students

Disabled Students’ Allowances or DSAs are designed to help meet the extra course costs students can face as a direct result of a disability, on-going health condition, mental health condition or specific learning difficulty. DSAs don’t have to be paid back and the type of support you receive will be determined by your specific needs not your household income. Please contact LJMU’s Disability team for further advice: 0151 231 3164/3165.

Council tax exemption

All full-time postgraduate students studying courses lasting one year or more are eligible for a council tax exemption certificate.

How to apply

Further information

Please contact the Faculty of Arts, Professional and Social Studies on:

tel: 0151 231 5175
web: Faculty web site

If you have any queries relating to LJMU or university life in general please contact:

Course Enquiries
tel: +44(0)151 231 5090

Please apply via the online application form

LJMU's Admissions policy is in line with the University's Equal Opportunities Policy and applications are welcome from all candidates who fulfil the entry criteria. The university has a commitment to equality of opportunity and welcomes application from everyone regardless of age, disability, race or sex. The University is committed to widening participation and therefore will actively consider applicants who do not have a relevant degree but who are able to provide satisfactory evidence of their knowledge in the area. All applicants will be considered by the Recruitment and Selection Panel, if shortlisted applicants will be asked to attend for an interview.

International students

LJMU offers an extensive support system through its international office and study centre. An equivalence to the normal entry requirements is needed for entry. Students must also demonstrate a proficiency in communicating through English, for example with an IELTS tests or equivalent. Please note that because of UK visa restrictions, International students are only permitted to study on a full-time basis. Please contact LJMU’s International Team by visiting for more information and advice.

Please Note: The University reserves the right to cancel, suspend or modify in any way the information contained in this leaflet.

Page last modified by Marketing and Corporate Communications on 22 September 2014.
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