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Master of Business Administration (MBA)

by Ben Rath


General Information – Master of Business Administration

Heading towards the world of business? The MBA is an internationally recognised post-graduate qualification which constitutes the science of management. This means this qualification is beneficial specifically for those who work in business or management and for those who are seeking to develop their careers, technical skills and business knowledge. In our time and generation it is becoming a common trend to find ways to upgrade your qualifications or skills. Many business leaders consider an MBA qualification key to the continual success of careers in areas like manufacturing, business, education, healthcare and other service sectors. Essentially studying towards an MBA requires hard work and one that enhances your decision-making, strategic and analytical abilities.

Why are MBA qualifications important?

Let me break it down for you. So you’ve finished your undergraduate degree and now you’re looking to find a job in business or keen to expand your skills. What most graduates don’t realise is that many organisations expect candidates to have certain skill-sets that they may not have gained during their undergraduate studies. Phew, who knew finding a job would be so difficult! Nowadays it is becoming more and more important in the world of business to have really competent people. By studying an MBA, students broaden their knowledge on the fundamental aspects of business and many other electives such as project management, ethics, information technology etc. In South Africa, especially, there is a demand for MBA graduates due to the growing field of business education and the need to adapt to the 21st century business world.


MBA qualifications in South Africa offer entrants a wide choice of programmes integrating core subjects and electives. Many institutions are leaning towards programmes that reflect the needs of a changing South Africa. But remember, competition for enrolment to an MBA is quite tough. Therefore, if you are thinking of studying an MBA, you should keep two points in mind:

  1. What do you want to gain from the programme? Think in terms of the skills you wish to develop or the advancements you would like to make in your career.
  2. Consider thinking about your budget, time availability, location and interests at the time.

Depending on what programmes you are interested in, the duration of an MBA can vary from 1 to 5 years. Most institutions provide full-time, part-time, supported distance learning and internet-based MBAs. Of course, depending on what you’re looking for you would need to find the specific institution that provides for your needs.

An MBA generally consists of core subjects and electives. The core subjects are the basis of the MBA programme and provide essential fundamental business knowledge. Electives, on the other hand, are the add-on subjects entrants can choose specifically to what they are interested in. For example if someone is interested in learning more about Ethics they can take an elective in Ethics. I’m sure you see where I’m going with this.

Some core subject examples are:

  • Human Resources
  • Finance
  • Accounting
  • Economics
  • Marketing
  • Strategy
  • Information Management and Technology
  • Ethics
  • Company Structure and Organisational Management
  • Law

Some elective (additional subjects) examples are:

  • Entrepreneurship
  • E-Commerce & Technology
  • Consulting
  • General Management
  • Logistics
  • Leadership
  • Corporate Strategy
  • Collective Bargaining
  • Business Ethics
  • Economic and Financial Affairs
  • Small Business Management
  • Management of Human Resources in Small Business
  • Administration and Ecology

Note: Courses vary from institution to institution.


Some institutions that offer MBA qualifications:

FYI: These are merely example institutions in SA. There are many more that offer opportunities for studies, and it is in part up to you to research and find out which one is just the one for you!

EduConnect 2cents

Before you make the decision to study an MBA, make absolutely sure you are indeed ready to study further and you know the different options set out for you. The last thing you want is to be rushed into doing an MBA and then not use its full worth or slack. Doing your masters entails quite a bit of work, so be sure to weigh up the pros and cons before you jump right into it! If you have an interest to educate yourself further and you have a desirable need to enhance your skills in business or administration, then an MBA might be just for you!


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