Published on 2013/04/03

Partnering to Launch an Online MBA
Despite having less funding, higher education institutions are expected to expand programming opportunities. The University of Roehampton navigated this issue by partnering with a corporation specializing in online program development and delivery.

Higher education in the United Kingdom is changing. With less money available from the government, universities need to diversify and look for new ways of deriving revenue. At the University of Roehampton, we have been exploring the possibilities that partnerships might offer us and our students. One of the avenues we were keen to consider was the opportunities that a move into online education could provide.

Online education isn’t new in the UK but it isn’t as widespread as it is in the United States. When we decided we wanted to widen our appeal and create opportunities for people right around the globe, an online degree seemed right.

However, having no experience in providing an online course and not wanting to sacrifice any quality in the delivery, we thought we’d seek advice from an expert in this area. The University entered into a partnership with Laureate Online Education B.V., a part of Laureate International Universities — a global network of 60 accredited campus-based and online universities offering undergraduate and graduate degree programs to students in 29 countries around the world.

Our Business School has a long tradition in the delivery of on-campus programs in business, management, marketing, human resource management, finance and information systems at undergraduate and postgraduate levels. The Business School’s strategic plan sets out some ambitious aims, including growing our postgraduate numbers through the development of new programmes that draw on our research expertise and complement our existing offerings.

We’ve started our online programs with a suite of master’s degrees in the Business School: an MBA, MSc in Project Management and MSc in Information Systems Management. Courses began in the fall of 2012 and take-up has been strong.

We’re really pleased at how the courses are developing as the move online has given us the ability to tap into new markets. We’re now considering expanding our online offering, not just in the Business School, but across the university. We’re really excited about online education and the opportunities it allows us. This development is the perfect example of Roehampton’s mission in practice: top-quality education made accessible for all.

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Readers Comments

Simon Pickering 2013/04/03 at 8:51 am

Good to hear that take-up of Roehampton’s programs has been strong. As global MBAs continue to rise in popularity and importance, it’s good for institutions to start thinking of how to move these programs online and offer them to a bigger market. It seems that Roehampton has this under control.


Anthony Day 2013/04/03 at 3:24 pm

It would be interesting to know some of the factors that influenced the university to go with this particular provider. It’s mentioned in the article that Laureate Online Education B.V. has worked with multiple institutions around the world. This certainly sounds like a valuable network to be a part of.
At the same time, I wonder if its scope means that programs are less personalized to individual institutions, or if there have been any challenges in working with a private provider perhaps not based in the same country as your institution. It would be neat to see some discussion on this.

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