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The Executive MBA

  • Why should I choose an Executive MBA?
    Many people wish to complete an MBA but do not want to interrupt their careers. Executive MBA participants remain in full-time work while they study, simultaneously advancing their careers and their professional and personal development.

    Executive MBA students are able to immediately apply knowledge gained through the programme back to their workplaces, which fast-tracks the learning process. While the London Business School Executive MBA is an intensive and challenging programme, it is also a highly stimulating and enriching experience.
  • What's the difference between the Executive MBA and the full-time MBA?
    While both the MBA and the Executive MBA cover similar material, and both award the same MBA degree, there are some fundamental differences.

    The Executive MBA is designed for managers and executives who already have substantial professional experience behind them. They want to remain in full-time employment to continue their careers whilst studying for their degree. Full-time MBA students take part in a number of practical exercises, such as work shadowing and placements, making it more suitable for those at an earlier stage in their career.
  • What is the difference between the London and Dubai streams of the Executive MBA?
    Executive MBA (London) conducts its core courses on consecutive Fridays and Saturdays of alternate weeks in London. Executive MBA (Dubai) conducts the majority of its core courses in four or five-day modules each month in Dubai, with some visits to London.

    All Executive MBA students have access to London Business School's extensive elective portfolio and international elective options, but only Executive MBA (Dubai) students take core courses in both Dubai and London. For Executive MBA (London) students, core course teaching is conducted in London only.

    With a fully aligned curriculum and admission requirements across both streams, your choice of primary study location is dependent upon your personal preference and circumstances.
  • Is it possible to do the Executive MBA if I don't live either in London or Dubai?
    There are no admissions restrictions in terms of geographic location. However, as the majority of the Executive MBA programme is delivered in London or Dubai, you must think carefully about how you can combine the travel requirements with your full-time employment. Approximately 25% of Executive MBA students live outside the UK and the UAE, and commute to London and/or Dubai for classes. While students often find commuting demanding, the benefits from the programme far outweigh the inconvenience of the travel.
  • Can I swap between the London and Dubai streams of the Executive MBA programme?
    You must apply and commit to only one stream of the programme. This decision will determine the primary location(s) of your core coursework. After you have completed the core, you are free to take electives from the Schools elective portfolios, thereby customising your experience on the programme.
  • What is the typical Executive MBA student like?
    Executive MBA students represent a wide range of nationalities and work backgrounds. What they share is that they are exceptional, experienced people who can both contribute to and benefit from the programme.

    Download the class directory

    Here is the profile of a typical Executive MBA class*:

    Executive MBA (London)
    Typical class size 75
    Average work experience 12 years
    Range of work experience 5-21 years
    Women 23%
    Nationalities represented 30

    Executive MBA (Dubai)
    Typical class size 60
    Average work experience 10 years
    Range of work experience 5-24 years
    Women 12%
    Nationalities represented 27

    *These figures are a three year average and represent a typical EMBA class. Please note that admission decisions are taken in accordance with best equal opportunities.

Programme details

  • How is the curriculum structured for the Executive MBA?
    The Executive MBA is a five-term, 20-month programme. Students on both the London and Dubai streams will come together in London to start the Executive MBA experience. You will join together to undertake a total of three modules in London - at the start and end of the programme. All three shared modules are residential and provide the ideal environment in which to build valuable networks with an extended group of diverse peers.

    The Executive MBA programme begins with Orientation, a London-based residential week dedicated to understanding the principles of general management and leadership. Following Orientation week, the two Executive MBA streams continue the core course curriculum in either London or Dubai. You study the majority of the core courses in your primary study location. In London, core courses are taught on consecutive Fridays and Saturdays of alternate weeks. In Dubai, core courses are taught in a four or five-day block each month.

    During the second academic year, you take between six and eight elective courses. Schedules differ for each student depending on which electives they choose. Students embark on a compulsory week-long International Assignment and may choose a second as an elective option. You can also elect to undertake an in-company project as part of your elective credits.

    The Executive MBA concludes with the London and Dubai streams coming together for two residential modules. Theses core modules are designed to consolidate your learning through multi-disciplinary group simulation and feedback to help you prepare for your career transitions ahead.

    There are also optional workshops offered throughout the programme, designed to develop your interpersonal skills, and cover topics such as presenting, negotiating, handling conflict and business writing.
  • What are the study groups? How are they put together?
    Study groups consist of about five or six people who work together for core course work during the first three terms. When putting the study groups together, we look for a balance of educational background, work background, gender and nationality. We also consider a number of personality profiling tools, to create diverse groups and challenging and collaborative learning environments.
  • Can I waive core courses if I have already studied a particular subject?
    If you hold professional accounting qualifications, or if you have a Masters degree in economics, you may request to opt out of the Accounting or Economics core courses. However, the experience that each student brings to the classroom is a vital part of the learning achieved on the programme, and therefore attendance through every core course is encouraged. Waivers are judged on a case-by-case basis.
  • How do the electives fit in the programme structure?
    Elective courses offer you the opportunity to concentrate on areas of special interest and to explore new subjects. Studied in the last two terms, Executive MBA students complete between six and eight elective courses, each taught over 30 classroom hours.
  • Where do I take my electives?
    The broadest choice of electives is available in London, with a selection of the most popular courses offered in Dubai. A limited number of elective opportunities are also available in New York and Hong Kong through our partnership agreement with Columbia and HKU business schools.
  • What format are the electives offered in?
    London Business School electives may be offered in the following formats*:

    Modular format

    • Over a single ten week term
    • Alternating weeks
    • Fridays or Saturdays

    Block week format

    • Typically Monday or Friday
    • Blocks of five working days
    • Taught outside term dates

    Term class format

    • Three-hour class
    • Morning, afternoon, evening
    • Once a week over 10 weeks

    *Please note that not all electives are offered in all formats.
  • How much time do I need to allocate to each elective?
  • What is the purpose of the Global Business Assignment and where do they take place?
  • What is the in-company project?
  • When does the programme start?
  • How many days will I need to take out of the office to complete the Executive MBA?
  • How much time will I need to spend studying outside the classroom?
  • How is the programme assessed?
  • Where do I stay when I'm attending classes?
  • Is it possible to do the Executive MBA while living outside the UK?

Employer support


  • What level of work experience do I need to have?
    You need to be able to demonstrate experience in the management of projects, budgets, processes or people over a sustained period. Students typically have between six and 22 years of managerial experience.
  • Does my work experience need to be as a manager?
    Generally, EMBA students have managerial experience in at least one of four areas - people management, project management, process management or budget management. Not everyone leads large teams of people, but they usually manage in one of these key areas. You are required to be in this kind of role so that you can directly apply your classroom learning to your job. This is one of the key benefits of the programme.

    Find out more about the admission requirements
  • Should I hold an undergraduate degree?
    Executive MBA students normally have an undergraduate degree from a recognised university. However, we do occasionally consider non-graduate candidates. We would expect such candidates to have alternative professional qualifications and/or outstanding work experience. We would also look at the GMAT or Executive Assessment more closely as an indicator of academic ability.

    Find out more on the GMAT website
  • What is the minimum GMAT score required?
    There is no minimum score requirement. The GMAT is just one of several pieces of information used by the School to assess a candidate's suitability, and just as a high score does not guarantee admission, a lower score does not eliminate a candidate. In making an admissions decision, we consider all aspects of a candidate's background, knowledge and experience as demonstrated throughout the application process.

    If you are concerned about your test score, please contact a member of the admissions team at or telephone +44 (0)20 7000 7512 (UK) or +971 440 193 01 (Dubai).
  • How do I qualify for the GMAT/EA/GRE waiver?
    Only applicants with exceptional work experience and academic performance will be considered for a waiver and all requests will be assessed on a case-by-case basis.

    Some eligibility criteria include:

    • Candidates with C-level experience in a heavily quantitative role from a medium/large organisation
    • Vice President, Senior VP in Business Services, Technology sector with demonstrated experience in leading a function for minimum 2 years
    • Masters qualification and higher in a quantitative field
    • Relevant Professional Qualifications ie: CFA Level 2, ACCA Level 4

    Please note that decisions will be made using a holistic approach. If you feel you are suitable for a waiver please email the EMBA London or EMBA Dubai Recruitment Team with a copy of your CV and the reason why you feel you meet the waiver eligibility criteria.

    Applicants who meet the eligibility requirements will be reviewed by the Admissions Team. We will then let you know within 7 working days whether your request has been successful
  • What is the school's code to submit a GMAT score?
  • Do I need to take TOEFL/IELTS?
  • Can I apply for more than one programme at the School?
  • What is the Executive Assessment (EA)?

Application process

  • When should I apply?
    We operate a rolling admissions process, which means the sooner you apply, the sooner you receive a decision. In most cases, you will receive a final decision within eight weeks of submitting your completed application.

    Find out more about application deadlines on the applying section
  • How much is the application fee?
    The application fee is £180. You can pay the fee online as part of the online application or by downloading the Application Fee Payment Form.
  • Can I waive the application fee?
    For graduates of the University of London colleges, Columbia Business School and Hong Kong University, the application fee will be waivered. This must be requested when you apply, and you must provide a copy of your college transcript.

    Candidates recommended by London Business School alumni may also be exempt from the application fee. Alumni wishing to recommend a candidate should email stating their relationship with the candidate and their reasons for the recommendation. Recommendations must be received before the application is submitted.
  • Who should my references be from?
    One should be from your immediate line manager. The other should come from someone who can comment directly on your academic or managerial abilities.
  • Academic transcripts
    Candidates are required to submit academic transcripts from their undergraduate or graduate educational institutions. If the original transcripts are not in English, you must also provide certified translated copies.
  • How do I apply?
    Our preferred format for receiving applications is via our online system at If you need to make a paper application, please call +44 (0)20 7000 7512 or email

    Find out more about applying
  • Once an application is submitted, what happens?
    We review applications within two weeks of receiving them. If you are successful, you will be invited to interview. Interviews are conducted by a member of the Executive MBA Admissions Committee. You will receive a final decision within six to eight weeks of submitting a complete application.
  • What happens if my application is not successful?
    If your application is not successful, please review the admissions criteria against your application and ensure that your experience and objectives are aligned with the admissions criteria. Remember that competition for places is high, and consequently we are not able to offer places to a number of entirely suitable candidates.

Fees and financing

Finding out more