Over the past several years business schools from across the world have flocked to the Middle East to establish a physical presence and offer online education. The moves reflect the demand for management expertise among the local populous, amid a period of economic diversification, especially in the oil-dependent Gulf states.
These students have rushed to enter Online MBA programs offered by business schools, both local and from overseas, to upgrade credentials and improve career prospects.
Often, these programs are not classic Online MBAs in the sense that they blend both online and offline teaching and come under the auspices of executive and part-time MBAs.
They offer enormous value for students, since they can visit the major commercial and financial centers of the middle east such as Dubai on a semi-regular basis, while maintain the flexibility and convenience of some remote study.
Many of the program options come not from business schools based in the middle east – though there are a few – but from academic institutions in the western world and in particular, the UK and other parts of Europe.
Many of these institutions have established international reputations, topping league tables and achieving accreditations from the best awarding bodies.
But the programs are mostly targeting executives from the middle east, mostly from across the UAE and Gulf countries. Program options remain limited, but here are the best among them:
London Business School has an EMBA in Dubai, which mixes online and in-class learning with participants studying in two commercial and financial centres in London and Dubai. LBS is Europe’s premier management school, which regularly tops numerous rankings from top-tier media outlets.View School Profile
The UK’s Alliance Manchester Business School opened its Middle East Center in 2006 and has offered a part-time blended MBA in the region for several years. The two-year Global MBA is taught in Dubai. Students, mostly executives from across the UAE and Gulf countries, take core courses on campus but study electives online.View School Profile
Online MBA Middle East is run by the UK’s Aston Business School, for students in the UAE, Jordan and Qatar. Aston has received “triple crown” accreditation from AACSB, AMBA and EQUIS, suggesting the very highest academic standards are maintained in teaching and research.View School Profile
SP Jain is based in Dubai in the United Arab Emirates. And the school runs an Executive MBA that is delivered only in English over a period of 18 months. The course is delivered part-time using the latest immersive technology, which offers a classroom-like experience from anywhere in the world.View School Profile
Edinburgh Business School at Heriot-Watt University runs an Online MBA in Dubai. The school, based in Scotland in the UK, launched a Dubai campus several years ago in the heart of Dubai’s business, innovation and entrepreneurship district.View School Profile
Strathclyde Business School, a triple-accredited institution based in Glasgow in Scotland, puts on an MBA in Dubai that is delivered part-time in a blended format. The school established its Dubai base in 1998 and has offered the MBA in the UAE since 1995.View School Profile
The Lebanese American University runs an English-language Online MBA that is delivered part-time over a period of 24 months. The fully online course is relatively affordable and delivers key learning outcomes such as data analytics. Students on the course also learn how to evaluate the social and ethical issues in business decisions.View School Profile
The University of Bradford School of Management offers triple-crown accredited online education from its outpost in Dubai, including the blended Executive MBA. There are currently 500 students enrolled from a wide array of countries and many diverse industries, which enriches the learning experience for all participants.View School Profile