This programme develops strategic leadership and decision making skills – for senior leaders who work at organisational (rather than functional) level. Learners gain a globally-recognised Master’s qualification – a Master of Business (MBA).

Our MBA apprenticeship is strongly focused on work-based skills (which makes it different to other Master’s programmes). Throughout the programme, learners identify business problems and decisions they face at work – then use relevant academic theory and research to inform their management and make real decisions.

The result? They’ll enhance their skills, and organisational performance.

Key facts

  • Learners will gain:
    • a prestigious MBA award
    • the potential to achieve full Chartered Manager status (CMgr) (if they meet CMI’s professional work experience requirements)
  • Learners can have one-to-one executive coaching and/or mentoring
  • Academic learning blends with their day-to-day management and leadership practice
  • Assessments are 100% relevant to their work

What’s included?

Senior Leader MBA Degree Apprenticeship

Learners will learn in lots of different ways – in workshops, discussions, online and more – and complete an assessment. Their learning and assessment contributes to both their MBA with Middlesex University, and their Master’s apprenticeship qualification.

Once learners have passed the MBA, they’ll prepare for their end-point assessment (EPA) – which assesses whether they have the developed the skills, knowledge and behaviours needed to be awarded the apprenticeship. They’ll go through their portfolio of work-based evidence – which can mostly be built from the assessments they do for the MBA.

The apprenticeship is awarded by the Chartered Management Institute (CMI). CMI will assess whether learners have demonstrated and evidenced the knowledge, skills and behaviours in the Senior Leader MBA Level 7 apprenticeship standard.

To be eligible learners need:

  • A minimum of a 2:2 Bachelor’s degree (or equivalent)
  • A minimum of 3 years continuous work experience after graduation – in a managerial or professional job
  • A CV
  • To be in employment

The programme covers:

  • Creating identity and setting direction
  • Collaborating with customers
  • Leading the entrepreneurial organisation
  • Growing the organisation
  • Creating value through innovation
  • Business transformation

How is learning delivered?

Learning should resonate with day-to-day life. So we use technology and digital content, alongside face-to-face teaching to deliver a ‘high tech, high touch’ approach to learning.

What does this mean? Our high-quality learning content is accessed on the go. We deliver ‘mobile-first’ education – it can be accessed anytime, anywhere, on any device.

Personal performance coaches with coaching qualifications and experience, make sure learners understand how to apply their new knowledge in work – which also helps build evidence in their portfolio. As it’s a work-based learning programme, the MBA merges with their day-to-day professional practice. So completing the learning and assessments has an immediate impact at work.

Each module is delivered over a 10-week term. It’s taught through a mix of face-to-face action learning set (ALS) workshops, online activities, peer discussions, coaching and assignments. Assignments are on an Issue, Situation, Challenge or Opportunity (ISCO) at work.

At the beginning of each module, learners prepare for a couple of weeks online – reading materials and doing activities. Then, they meet in their ALS to discuss their ISCO. Back at work, they have more online resources to support them, and they make their ISCO happen in reality. Our experts help learners delve deeper into their ISCO – to face and grapple with more complex areas. Finally, learners write up their ISCO (as their assignment) and hand it in at week 10.

On the apprenticeship, learners need to spend 20% of their time at work on off-the-job learning.

All modules are worth 20 credits (unless otherwise stated).

Creating an identity and setting direction

This is the starting point of the MBA journey. They’ll learn about personal presence, story-telling, confidence, character and all things essential for inter-personal excellence. Learners will consider how their development matches up with organisational performance. They’ll think about what motivates and empowers them to become a more considered leader.

Collaborating with customers

Let’s start at the basics of leading a successful organisation. The fundamentals to perform well are: reaching customers; maintaining relationships with them; and building new relationships. Learners examine how their organisation reaches out to customers. They’ll look at how technology and digital leadership might disrupt that process in the future. They’ll explore how marketing and operations work together to create value. Learners will also examine how they are supported by internal financial processes and external sources of finance – alongside reporting on financial performance or value for money.

Leading the entrepreneurial organisation

Management is far from easy. As customers become more disruptive, operations and people need to adapt. Learners will consider how organisations can make sure leadership capacity and capability is ready to work towards entrepreneurial aims that involve change. They’ll discuss thought-provoking topics, like: who should lead; how leading and following are intertwined and interchangeable; and how you balance entrepreneurship and change with stability. Learners will also explore how HR practices and technologies need to change to support entrepreneurship.

Growing the organisation

Learners will discover that improved productivity is linked to growth – and in the public sector, value for money. And there are logical links behind this. They’ll also look at how technology (especially artificial intelligence and machine learning), is likely to replace jobs – and (arguably) create new ones. This puts into question what a growing organisation might look like in the future. On top of this, strategic choices and careful financial management are essential – but not easy to deliver. So learners critically explore logical, rational views of what top management teams and senior leaders should do. What practices, logic and evidence result in growing organisations? What makes organisations less rational, and therefore less able to pursue the best route to growth or value for money?

Creating value through innovation

This module looks at the complexity of getting value from innovation. In a critical action learning set, learners will explore the social and emotional effect of innovation – and how leaders champion and promote new ideas at work. They’ll look at how creative cultures can be grown in their organisation – even when they bring conflict. Learners will also explore the diversity needed to be creative.

Business transformation project (60 credits)

Learners get the chance to choose their own area of personal development. They’ll work on a project of their choice, exploring an Issue, Situation, Challenge or Opportunity (ISCO) – that’s directly related to their work. They’ll examine how it has impacted organisational performance. The only requirement, is that their project involves the role of technology or digital transformation. This project is an important part of the end-point assessment (EPA) for their apprenticeship.

Portfolio building and identity reconstruction

Since starting their learning journey, who have they become? In the final module, learners will reflect on where they started, to where they are now. This prepares them to put together their portfolio and is good prep for their professional discussion (part of their EPA). In a critical action learning set, they’ll question how managers can be ‘good’. How do leaders balance their professional responsibilities with a work-life balance, corporate social responsibility and professional ethics?

For more information download the handout.

Please note: this programme is only available in England.

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