University of Oxford’s Saïd Business School has announced a major redesign of the one-year Oxford MBA, launching in September 2014, that will provide future leaders with the skills, knowledge, and personal qualities needed to meet the world-scale challenges of the 21st century.
In the redesigned program, learning in the core areas will be enhanced with extended pre-arrival preparation materials and ongoing support courses. A wider range of electives will be offered, including a selection of inter-disciplinary and jointly developed courses that bring in knowledge from the wider Oxford community.
A review process of the MBA program began last year to ensure students were well-equipped for the career challenges that await. “The new Oxford MBA is now an even more powerful, rigorous and innovative programme with a range of exciting and valuable elements from which our students will benefit,” says Professor Peter Tufano, dean of Saïd Business School, who notes that program adjustments are ongoing in order to keep in step with changes in the external business environment.
At the heart of the redesigned MBA are three cross-cutting themes related to the world-scale challenges shaping today’s business environment:
- the global rules of the game
- responsible leadership
These themes are addressed in specific interdisciplinary modules and extend through the other parts of the program from core and elective courses, GOTO (Global Opportunities and Threats: Oxford), to guest speaker sessions and student-run conferences and competitions.
“We believe that future business leaders will be confronted with these complex global issues and firms will require people who have a wide range of skills and abilities to navigate the challenging landscape of global business. Knowledge in these areas is relevant whether you are working in finance or social enterprise, in a big firm or small firm, anywhere in the world,” says MBA Program Director Dana Brown.
Another innovation of the program is the pairing of each student with an executive coach, matched to help them grow in the unique skill-set and career path they’ve chosen. Executive coaching is offered as part of a wider program of talent development initiated during the MBA Launch. Students have free rein to identify a topic for discussion with their coach that is important to them and that will be personally transformative.
Dean Tufano calls this major review an effort to “future-proof” the Oxford MBA. “The business world is currently experiencing a period of unprecedented transformation…This environment needs individuals who can inspire and influence a wide range of stakeholders, and who can demonstrate responsible leadership in the face of complex and often conflicting interests. We wanted to be sure that our MBA will fulfill the needs of today’s students working in this environment.”
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