Online MBA
April 18, 2005 7:52 AM   Subscribe

I would like to enroll in a MBA in a good school in the US or UK, but I can't really stop working for a couple of years right now. And since I live in Brazil, nighttime courses are not really an option. So I am seriously considering an Online Distance-education MBA. Several schools offer this and I am a little lost with the huge offer. Any experiences or recommendations to share?
posted by falameufilho to Education (9 answers total) 3 users marked this as a favorite
Strange..I was noticing in my newspaper today that half the adspace has been bought up by MBA programs. Is today some sort of official Find-your-MBA-school Day?
posted by duck at 8:03 AM on April 18, 2005

My Dad completed an online-only (executive) MBA from the University of Phoenix online. Took ~3 years.
posted by defcom1 at 8:10 AM on April 18, 2005

Defcom1: And how does he feel about it?
posted by falameufilho at 8:11 AM on April 18, 2005

The true value of the MBA is not in the books that you read, or the cases that you write. The true value is in the people that you meet, the speakers that you are inspired by, the friendships that you develop and the network that you build. An online MBA will offer full title, yes - but only partial benefits.

Why do you want that MBA? What career objective do you want to achieve, with this degree? The three letters themselves will only get you so far. The network that you build may take you farther than you ever imagined.

Invest in a classroom based MBA. The experiences that you will have during those two or three years, and the experience that you will gain from this exercise will be priceless.
posted by seawallrunner at 8:39 AM on April 18, 2005

seawall: that's why online based MBAs cost a fraction of classroom based ones, not counting a couple of years out of the market. I agree with you: the networking factor comprises at least half of a MBA's benefits, but as I said, I cannot stop working right now. However, I need some formal business training specially in finances, strategy and marketing, and that's my main goal.

I could take a classroom based MBA in Brazil, but I think that for roughly same price I can find a good online based option with a better international outlook - and I already have an excellent network in Brazil, so I wouldnt be missing out on that :-)
posted by falameufilho at 8:47 AM on April 18, 2005

falameufilho: He was quite pleased with it. He would have preferred an in-class course, but that wasn't feasible for him to do.
posted by defcom1 at 10:04 AM on April 18, 2005

I've been toying with the idea of taking an MBA as well, pretty much ever since I finished my MSc. A highly mathematical and finance oriented degree, I haven't gotten some of the "soft skills" that most MBA programs teach.

This site hosts a vigorous community of on-line learning advocates. They also discuss the merits of programs that offer the totally on-line experience and those that require a mix of residential components.

I work with someone who took an MBA from The Open University. He's as sharp and maybe even sharper then some of the folks that took traditional "bricks and mortar" Universities.

You'll get out of any program what you put into it, so if on-line makes the most sense for you I'd say go for it.
posted by Mutant at 11:21 AM on April 18, 2005

I am finishing my MBA right now. I have taken several online courses through my in-class based school, but I have to agree that you learn/absorb more through group interaction than any online forum can give in the limited amount of time you have to complete the classes. The best classes for online learning are not business/management courses. You wouldn't manage your employees online, so learning this way isn't necessarily the best choice if you could do it another way. It has taken me 2.5 years to complete the executive program while working full time, though I did have a business undergrad - as with everything, YMMV.
posted by blackkar at 11:25 AM on April 18, 2005

I tend to agree that part of the value of an MBA is the network of people you meet. While I'm an advocate of online education in general, I tend to think that some face-to-face contact would befit a business degree.

That said, if I were you, I'd poke around Oxford University's MBA program at the Said School of Business. It's a one-year MBA (and is considerably cheaper than US business schools, in the long run). I have worked with students from the Said School, and they all say that it's a very intense year, but well worth the time.
posted by yellowcandy at 1:36 PM on April 18, 2005

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