New Oxford 1+1 MBA Program Offers Depth, Breadth

The University of Oxford’s Saïd Business School has launched the Oxford 1 + 1 MBA Program, a new initiative that will allow students to combine Oxford’s one year full-time MBA course with one of a selection of specialist master’s degree programs offered by other University departments.

High-calibre applicants may apply to both the MBA and MSc programs at the same time, allowing them to undertake a rigorous two-year Oxford postgraduate experience that combines the depth of study of an MSc, with the managerial and leadership breadth of an MBA. The first students will begin the 1+1 program in October 2012.

“In many areas, it is important for successful practitioners to have strong technical skills or domain knowledge in conjunction with rich management training,” says professor Peter Tufano, dean of the business school. “Given the complexity of the challenges faced by the next generation of business leaders, this combination could become a dominant theme of 21st century postgraduate business education.”

In an interview with Financial Times, Tufano says the new program offers “the deep dive of a master’s degree in a specialist subject, such as environmental management or education, and the breadth of a business degree.”

According to a statement heralding the news, four departments at the University are participating in the first phase of the program – the School of Geography and the Environment, the Department of Education, the Oxford Internet Institute and the Department of Computer Science ”“ but it is expected that many more of the 200-plus postgraduate taught degrees at Oxford will follow as 1+1 becomes established.

The 1+1 Program will appeal to highly qualified applicants with well-defined career goals. The benefits of this combination will be unique; students will be trained within both departments of the University and will be able to draw upon a wide range of tailored resources to shape the program to their requirements. Oxford has historically offered this type of experience to its Rhodes Scholars, who have often constructed customized, multi-year programs.

“This will be a rich learning experience for strong, high-potential leaders,” says Tufano. “Studying in this way and in this environment, will allow students an unrivaled learning experience whereby 1+1 will amount to much more than 2. The interaction with two areas of expertise within one of the world’s leading universities, and the engagement with two distinct but connected networks, alongside a continuous two year college experience, will well prepare participants for successful and impactful careers.”

The Financial Times also points out the relative affordability of the newly conceived program. Noting that master’s degrees are less expensive than MBAs, the total cost of studying in the 1+1 MBA Program at Oxford will range between $114,500 and $134,000, depending on the degree. That is up to $50,000 less than a two-year MBA at Harvard Business School or the Wharton School at University of Pennsylvania.


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