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Mapping the structure of MBA programmes: a comparative study of the structure of accredited AMBA programmes in the United Kingdom

Paucar-Caceres, Alberto and Thorpe, Richard (2005) Mapping the structure of MBA programmes: a comparative study of the structure of accredited AMBA programmes in the United Kingdom. ISSN 0160-5682

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Abstract

This paper reports on an application a multivariate analysis technique called Co-Plot. It replicates a study conducted among leading MBA programmes in the United States using the same technique; a statistical method especially suited for this type of analysis where there are samples with relatively few observations (business schools) and large numbers of variables (subject modules, core and elective). Using Co-Plot the paper presents a mapping of the structure of 32 Association of Masters of Business Administration (AMBA) accredited MBA programmes in the United Kingdom and compares the characteristics of the resultant groupings of MBA programmes and the relationship between group membership. The patterns of core and elective modules offered by the selected MBA programmes are then compared with the rankings of UK business schools. The research shows that in the UK, unlike in the US, the clustering is not as strong and clear. Five groups/clusters of schools are identified together with four main clusters of core and electives modules offered. Differentiation is only significant when the electives modules are taken into account unlike the US where differentiation is evident between programmes with the core modules.

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