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Data shows trends: part-time and non-degree programmes on the rise

Demand for part-time MBA programmes has held steady through the financial crisis, as the degree attracts people who want to study without giving up a job. This is the outcome of the Application Trend Survey conducted by the Graduate Management Admission Council or GMAC. Amongst the surveyed part-time MBA programmes 44 per cent saw an increase in applications from 2011 and 14 per cent reported no change.

Also non-degree programmes are on the rise. According to the annual Business School Questionnaire (BSQ) issued by accreditation institution AACSB the percentage of business schools offering these programmes rose from 55 per cent in 2007/08 to 57 per cent today. The questionnaire was based on 482 AACSB-accredited institutions that participated in the 2007–2008 and 2011–2012 questionnaire.These non-degree offerings are mostly executive education programmes.

And according to the latest report of the Financial Times on the best executive MBA programmes in the world, China is the hottest place to learn. Quite a few of the 10 best placed schools of the 2012 FT executive MBA ranking are based there. Hong Kong UTS with Kellogg comes first, Tsinghua University with INSEAD second, Ceibs third. And UCLA Anderson with National University of Singapore is also amongst the top ten, not in China, though, but in the dominantly Chinese speaking city state. After all, 90 per cent of MBA students in China choose to study on part-time and executive programmes.

An analysis of the AACSB's Business School Questionnaire shows that there has also been a small increase in the percentage of schools offering all three education levels, from undergraduate to masters and doctorate programmes: The number is up from 30.9 per cent in 2007/08 to currently 32.6 per cent. A decrease was found at the undergraduate only level: while 7 per cent of the participating AACSB-accredited schools reported as undergraduate only in 2007/08, the percentage fell to 5 per cent by 2011/12.

According to the AACSB the trend for schools is also to offer more services, such as academic and career advising. The largest increase was in the number of schools offering graduate-level career services, with a change from 37 per cent in 2007/08 to 47 per cent today.

Sources:
GMAC
Financial Times
AACSB

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