DBA Doctorate in Business Administration
The Doctorate in Business Administration from Edinburgh Business School is an integrated doctoral programme that develops applied research skills in strategic focus in various areas of Business Administration. This course aims to produce business research professionals who can directly apply their doctoral level skills at a senior executive level in a business environment.
Heriot-Watt University MBA
OR An approved MBA of equivalent standard to that currently offered by Edinburgh Business School
OR A Masters degree such as MSc, MA, Mphil in a relevant field of study
OR A PhD in a relevant area
Part 1 - The Study Element
You have two ways to demonstrate your knowledge in the subject area of your proposed thesis. Either:
- Complete one of the EBS MSc degree programmes. EBS currently offers MSc programmes inFinance, Human Resource Management, Marketing and Strategic Planning. The EBS MSc programmes will ensure you have sufficient subject knowledge for a thesis in any of these broad subject areas, and each includes the course Introduction to Business Research 1, which provides a basic understanding of what research is and how it is done.
- Apply to the EBS DBA Research Committee with details of an existing degree at Masters level (or higher) and the proposed subject for your thesis.
The DBA Research Committee will determine additional subject-based courses that you will be required to complete with EBS before you can start the Mentored stage.
This 'tailored' route is at the discretion of the Committee and additional academic references may be required.
If you do not have a clear concept for your thesis proposal, it is recommended that you focus on a specialist MSc programme in the Course stage.
Part 2 The Research Element
Research skills and research proposal - the Mentored stage
To embark on this stage of your DBA, you will be allocated a mentor and be required to complete the EBS courses Introduction to Business Research 2 and 3. In this stage you will also develop your thesis proposal.
Introduction to Business Research 2 considers research methodology and literature review. It explains how to carry out a business-related literature review and then use it to develop a hypothesis or theory about a business issue.
Introduction to Business Research 3 concentrates on statistical techniques for data collection, analysis and drawing conclusions.
As with other EBS courses, the two Introduction to Business Research courses are each assessed by written 3-hour examinations.
Your EBS mentor will work with you to help in the preparation of the research proposal. Your mentor will be a senior academic with experience of mentoring DBA students but not necessarily an expert in the subject of your final thesis.
Your research proposal must be submitted to the EBS DBA Research Committee for approval. If the research proposal is not acceptable, it is returned to you with suitable explanations and you will continue to develop the research proposal until a standard acceptable to the EBS Research Committee is achieved.
Once the research proposal is accepted, you will be allocated a supervisor whose expertise lies within your proposed area of research.
The Mentored stage is normally of 1 year's duration.
Literature review and thesis – the Supervised stage
During this stage of the DBA programme, you work under the direction of your allocated supervisor to conduct a literature review to support your research and underpinning methodology, carry out your research and write your thesis.
Your supervisor will be a senior academic with specific knowledge of your chosen area of research. He or she may or may not be a member of EBS's faculty, and will allocate to you approximately 6 hours of contact time per month.
Communication with your supervisor will be primarily via email.
As with the research proposal, each stage of your research must be developed to a level acceptable to the EBS DBA Research Committee.
After acceptance of the literature review and synthesis, you will work on your thesis (approximate length 45,000 words) under the direction of your supervisor; the thesis is then submitted formally to the university and assessment takes the form of a review followed by a viva voce 'defence' of your thesis.
The examination will be conducted in person or by live video link at the university's discretion.
The supervised stage is normally of 2–3 years' duration, but this can of course vary greatly by individual student.
Assessment is by formal viva voice (a formal face-to face oral defense) examination comprising the student, an internal examiner, an external examiner and a supervisor.
The EBS DBA offers a number of valuable benefits.
- builds on the internationally successful EBS MBA programme, utilising established distance-learning-based delivery and support systems;
- produces applied research professionals – people who are able to analyse complex business issues and develop original and reliable solutions; and
- generates understanding of synergies and insights that can only be developed by integrating different disciplines within the context of original research.
EBS MBA graduates may be eligible for up to four credit transfers for relevant courses from the MBA, which form part of the DBA programme.
For the Study Element Examination sessions, known as diets, are held in all exam centres for all courses in June and December each year. Minor exam sessions are held in March and August in selected locations for selected courses. A full examination timetable is available on the EBS Student Services website.
Each exam is a 3 hour written exam per course. All questions are compulsory: you do not have a choice. Exam scripts are marked by EBS Faculty and are rigorously scrutinised by external examiners from other UK universities. You are permitted a maximum of two examination attempts for each core course. There is a fee of £100 for each exam you sit.
29 April for exams in June
30 October for exams in December
4 October for exams in March
21 July for exams in August
1 May for exams in June
1 November for exams in December
7 February for exams in March
24 July for exams in August