Tag Archives: part-time MBA

UMD Smith School to Offer Blended Part-Time MBA

Part-time MBA students in the nation’s capital no longer have to choose between online and classroom delivery. Starting in fall 2014, the University of Maryland’s Robert H. Smith School of Business will offer the region’s …

Part-time MBA students in the nation’s capital no longer have to choose between online and classroom delivery. Starting in fall 2014, the University of Maryland’s Robert H. Smith School of Business will offer the region’s first blended program for working professionals at its Washington campus.

The more flexible format will require participants in the school’s D.C. weekend program to meet on two Saturdays per month instead of three for traditional classroom instruction. Web-based learning modules designed by Smith faculty will provide the remainder of the content, allowing Smith students more latitude to structure their schedules. Participants in the pioneering program can complete their degree in two years.

“This eliminates 30 percent of the classroom time, giving students a huge amount of flexibility with their own lives,” Edward Lavino, Smith’s director of admissions for part-time MBA programs, said in a news release. “That three-Saturday-per month commitment takes away from an already small amount of free time from the program’s typical student — a 27- to 28-year-old professional.”

He said the blended format also allows assigned reading and skills practice to be designated for off-site engagement.

“About one-third of classroom time is currently consumed by students practicing skills via laptops or through other teacher-led exercises, and case studies sometimes are read in class prior to group discussion,” Lavino explained. “Now students will be able to engage in the same work at a quicker pace — off-site and on their own.”

Ken White, Smith’s associate dean of MBA and Master of Science programs, said flexibility is a major element of the program, but so is rigor.

“Students in the blended program will have the same classes and same professors available as in our full-time MBA program,” he said. “This is a high-quality program created for busy working professionals.”

The response among working professionals in the region has been positive. “Every applicant and current D.C. weekend student is on board,” Lavino said.

Upcoming application deadlines for the program are April 14 and June 2.

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Tepper School to Expand FlexMBA Program

Carnegie Mellon University’s Tepper School of Business has been on quite a roll lately. Last month, the school took Bloomberg Businessweek‘s top spot for best part-time MBA program; a week later, alumnus David Tepper, namesake of …

Tepper FlexMBA

Carnegie Mellon University’s Tepper School of Business has been on quite a roll lately. Last month, the school took Bloomberg Businessweek‘s top spot for best part-time MBA program; a week later, alumnus David Tepper, namesake of the university’s business school, announced he would donate $67 million to create a major new academic hub to  further strengthen collaboration among CMU’s schools and colleges.

It’s been almost exactly one year since Tepper announced it would launch a hybrid MBA format in fall 2013 known as FlexMBA, a 32-week program combining  in-person sessions, online classes and self-paced learning.  Robert Monroe, director of Tepper’s online MBA program, sat down recently with business school news website Poets & Quants and revealed the program has outperformed all expectations.

The first cohort this fall had 29 students, and Monroe tells P&Q he expects the school will double in size next year due to high interest in the program. Along with UNC Kenan-Flagler Business School and Indiana University’s Kelley School of Business, Tepper is one of the few elite business schools that has introduced an online MBA option—so far.

Tepper’s FlexMBA, priced at $118,080 for the 32-month program, is the most expensive in the market, the article notes. But Monroe asserts that you get what you pay for.

“The reason it’s expensive is it is the same MBA,” says Monroe. “We are moving to a model fairly rapidly where students can move between the different delivery alternatives, including full-time onsite and part-time. We made a very specific decision that we were not going to lower our standards for the program. We will not admit anybody who we don’t make it successfully through the program without any concern.”

The interview in P&Q covers a lot of ground, from the ways in which the school has worked to create a tight-knit community among the FlexMBA participants, to Tepper’s “anti-MOOC” stance, to Monroe’s projections regarding other top business school’s eventual entrance into the online MBA marketplace. You can read the whole article here.

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