Originating in the late 19th century, the MBA has taken significant strides in its journey to become one of the most sought after qualifications in the business world. From its humble beginnings as the first ever MBA program at Harvard Business School in 1908, there are now thousands of MBA programs located across the globe.
With the influx of more and more MBA programs around the world, it is becoming increasingly important that those high standards are maintained to ensure that not only quality MBA programs are produced, but also quality MBA graduates. With that in mind, the Association of MBAs’ (AMBA) mission is a simple one – to inform, connect and develop the global MBA community and set the international standard for accrediting MBA, DBA and MBM programs.
Established in 1967 by a small group of business graduates with the aim of raising the profile of business education and the MBA qualification in UK and Europe, AMBA is now the authoritative voice on postgraduate business education. Based in London, but with ties with major Business Schools and employers across the globe, AMBA currently accredits programs in 213 schools in 70 countries worldwide. The AMBA ethos is built around four pillars:
- Support AMBA’s exclusive global network of MBA students and graduates
- Deliver world class accreditation services
- Strengthen the collaborative relationship with AMBA’s accredited business schools
- Engage with business and MBA employers
With these strategic objectives in mind, AMBA’s reputation continues to grow and is now firmly recognized as the only global MBA-specific accrediting body.
AMBA membership comprises of two key sources – MBA students and graduates and Business Schools. This exclusive network connects the brightest minds with guaranteed world class education across the globe. Over 40,000 MBA students enrolled at AMBA Accredited Schools last year, with the highest percentage (27 percent) based in the Asia Pacific region, followed by Europe (26 percent), and Latin America and the Caribbean (22 percent). The world of MBA executive education is becoming increasingly global and grows at a very rapid pace. The Association of MBAs understands customer value and is able to respond to this rapidly changing business environment by offering support with access to MBA-specific careers, networking and knowledge services.
AMBA Accreditation is an assurance of quality earned only by the best programs and has the broadest global reach of any Accreditation Organization. The benefit of Accreditation affects all areas of the business world from students and Business Schools to employers and graduates.
AMBA accreditation represents the highest standard of achievement in postgraduate business education and only takes into account the MBA program as a stand-alone product. Each Accredited Business School must satisfy strict criteria to achieve and maintain AMBA Accreditation. Unlike unaccredited business schools, prospect Business Schools must go through a complex process which normally takes a year to complete, but guarantees a quality program for prospective students and international recognition for the Business School.
The value which Business School leaders place on the international recognition which AMBA provides for their programs remains an essential differentiator in a competitive market. The same is true for MBAs. In an increasingly competitive global world, the value of a quality MBA has never been more important. An MBA from a quality AMBA Accredited school, which offers a globally oriented curriculum, international faculty of MBA educators teaching it, and a talented cohort of students from all over the world with experience in many different industries, provides students with practical business education experience that is unsurpassed.
STUDENTS: ACCREDITATION IS AN ASSURANCE OF QUALITY
For students, the decision to take an MBA represents a major commitment, both in terms of time and money. In a crowded and complex market, AMBA accreditation provides a reliable list of meticulously tested programs and ensures that students’ investments are rewarded with the finest business education available, which will have a demonstrable impact on their careers.
EMPLOYERS: ACQUIRING FUTURE BUSINESS LEADERS
Employers looking to acquire the best managers and future business leaders know that graduates of AMBA accredited programs have received the highest quality and most relevant management education. To recruit a graduate from one of AMBA accredited programs is to recruit top talent.
BUSINESS SCHOOLS: INTERNATIONAL CREDIBILITY AND STATUS
Accreditation gives business schools international credibility and status. There are approximately 20,000 educational establishments offering MBA programs around the world, but only a small percentage of these would achieve accreditation if they were submitted to AMBA’s rigorous criteria. Accreditation by the Association of MBAs identifies the top programs globally. The developmental nature of the AMBA accreditation process often helps business schools spot potential shortcomings in their programs, and their comprehensive and consultative report outlines recommendations for improving provision in the future.
GRADUATES: CONNECTING WITH INDIVIDUALS FROM THE BEST GLOBAL MBA PROGRAMS
AMBA Membership means that MBA Graduates can network with one another, knowing that they are connecting with individuals from the best global MBA programs. AMBA member services provided to graduates from AMBA accredited business schools include careers support, job portals, networking opportunities, access to the latest research, and CPD events and training. MBA graduates know that AMBA accreditation opens doors and opportunities for them.
Over 40,000 MBA students graduate from AMBA’s accredited schools each year and one of our key strategic priorities is to fully support our graduate members during the next stages of their careers, helping them network with fellow MBAs and linking them with employers worldwide. They will champion the quality of AMBA accredited schools to future generations of high caliber, high potential MBA candidates. AMBA Accreditation is a prestigious accolade – AMBA accredits just 1 percent of the world’s MBA Schools and have the broadest global reach of any Accreditation Organization.
The research AMBA undertakes is highly important, both for the organization and all stakeholders. It develops AMBA’s global reputation as the authority on postgraduate management education. It also influences AMBA strategy, accreditation criteria, business schools’ programs and media articles on MBA issues.
Over the years a number of reports have been released that have been hugely informative and valuable to stakeholders. Reports such as ‘The Value of an MBA: An Employer Perspective’ and the ‘Intake and Graduation Report’ which demonstrated the shift of the MBA to a more global degree.
Adding to the regular reports, a series of surveys and reports are also underway such as the Careers Survey and the latest in the series of ‘Intake and Graduation’ which will ensure AMBA continues to inspire global excellence.
As the global thought leader in business education, AMBA hosts over 50 events each year, both in the UK and internationally. In a continuing effort to cover all facets of the MBA, AMBA events have something for everyone. AMBA Accredited MBA Fairs provides an opportunity for prospective MBA students to get the best information and advice from leading Business Schools, while our Refresher and Webinar events series provide a platform for continued education supported by CPD certification. On the Business School front, AMBA events offer opportunities for school marketers, admissions officers, recruiters and Deans and Directors to network with international colleagues while taking part in active discussions and interactive workshops.
As part of its global strategy, AMBA continues to host Deans and Directors Conferences throughout the world. The previous Deans and Directors Conferences were held in Europe (Warsaw), Latin America (Rio de Janeiro) and Asia Pacific (Brisbane). The events brought together over 300 deans and directors, who represent the vast majority of AMBA’s schools, to network, discuss and plan key future initiatives to shape MBA curricula, faculties and cohorts and to better serve future generations of MBA students.
Another key priority that AMBA focuses on is the future of MBA graduates. Utilizing its established reputation and a vast network of major multinational employers, AMBA is able to regularly host Careers Fairs and Employers Forums which feature the best prospects for employers and outstanding career options for graduates. Multinationals such as Accenture, Amazon UK, GE, KPMG, and Microsoft have all exhibited at AMBA’s Careers Fairs and are guaranteed to meet globally aware and both academically and professionally accomplished attendees who bring an average of eight years of work experience. These highly talented MBAs, who are culturally, geographically and professionally diverse, represent a powerful talent pool of tomorrow’s brightest future business leaders.