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Liverpool John Moores University

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Liverpool John Moores University

Doctorate in Business Administration

LJMU's DBA provides senior executives and managers with the opportunity to achieve the highest academic degree while remaining in full-time employment.

- Equivalent to a PhD, the DBA is ideal for those who would like a doctoral level qualification whilst remaining in their chosen professional career

- Focus on situational issues from your own workplace, whilst continuing your employment

- Enhance not only your ability to develop new knowledge, but also the ability to apply that knowledge to a professional context

- Gain the necessary skills to carry out rigorous research

- Carry out individual projects that impact on your organisation and industry

- Undertake your research amongst a carefully-selected, highly diverse group of professionals, drawn from a wide range of nationalities, industries, cultures and backgrounds

- Develop your skills and meet your supervisors at a number of residential workshops in Liverpool

Join a cohort of senior professionals and apply your research directly to the needs of your business, driving forward organisational progress without putting your learning or your business on hold. You will contribute to commercial and academic knowledge and, on graduation, will possess a specialist range of problem solving and decision making strategies that will take you to the next level of success.

Entry requirements

DBA: You will need:

A DBA, which is a doctoral level qualification, is a challenging, but also rewarding journey. In order to make sure you are suitable for the programme we have defined the following entry requirements for the programme:

A master's degree in the area of business and/or management
At least two years of managerial or five years of other working experience

In order to make an application to the programme you need to provide the following documents via the online application:

Curriculum vitae
Master's certificate and transcript in the area of business and/or management - these must be official English translations
Evidence of at least two years of managerial or five years of other working experience - this can be e.g. a confirmation by your current employer or a reference letter from a former employer
An academic reference, which recommends you for the programme - this can be e.g. from your master's institution
An industry reference, which recommends you for the programme - this can be e.g. from your employer, from a client and/or professional body
Personal statement (max. 2,000 words) - this is not a full research proposal, but should address why you would like to do a DBA, why you think you are suitable for the programme and what you expect from the DBA. You should furthermore provide a brief outline of your research topic and its contribution to theory and practice, including:
title of your research
introduction of your research
literature review of current studies
research methods
contribution of your research.

How your application is considered:

The application is screened to ensure the candidate meets the entry requirements and has submitted all their supporting documents.

If the candidate meets the minimum entry requirements and all documents have been received, the application is passed to the appropriate academics within the School for consideration and to identify a suitable supervisory team.

The DBA Team and/or an appropriate academic member of staff will interview the applicant and make a decision following the interview. For applicants in the UK, they are invited to attend the interview in person at Liverpool Business School. For applicants based elsewhere, the interview will normally take place by telephone, Skype or Adobe Connect.

The deadline for applications for the January 2019 intake is 30 November 2018. Should you have any queries regarding the entry criteria or documents required, please contact the Faculty Admissions Office at busadmiss?

International Applications

LJMU welcomes applications from international candidates. Most of the studying and learning will be undertaken via distance learning in your home country and there are only a small number of residential days in Liverpool required.

In addition to the outlined entry requirements for home applicants, you will be expected to demonstrate a good level of English language competence, for example an IELTS score of 6.5 (with no single component below 6.0) or equivalent.

For UK visa requirements, please contact the UK Entry Clearance or contact LJMU's International Advice Team:

Course modules

Your programme is made up of a number of core modules which are part of the course framework. Some programmes also have optional modules that can be selected to enhance your learning in certain areas and many feature a dissertation, extended report or research project to demonstrate your advanced learning.

The design is based on two principles:

Allow full-time professionals from all over the world to undertake doctoral studies part-time.
Provide the full-time professionals with the necessary skills, knowledge, tools and techniques to undertake high quality research on a doctoral level and contributing to their professional practice.

Based on these two principles we've designed the following structure:

Year 1

Two residential workshops (taught elements) each 5 days long will take place in Liverpool. These workshops focus on the planning process of the research, on refining the topic and basic research methods.

Year 2 and 3

One 5-day residential workshops, will take place in Liverpool. These workshops focus on the execution of the research, i.e. data collection and analysis, but also on a dissemination and impact strategy, as well as academic writing and viva preparation.

Year 4 - 7

Our experience shows that DBA candidates typically take four years to complete their thesis, whereas the maximum duration of the programme is seven years. During year 4 - 7 no residential workshops take place. The thesis can be submitted any time during year 4 - 7.

Assessment methods

To cater for the wide-ranging content of our courses and the varied learning preferences of our students, we offer a range of assessment methods on each programme. Assessment techniques vary from module to module to reflect relevant assessment approaches and the key learning points of each topic.

There are various assessments throughout the programme.

During the first year students are required to submit the research proposal (approx. 5K words), learning agreement (approx. 3K words) and LJMU Ethical approval form. Year 2 and year 3 are for students to write their thesis (approx. 80K words), complete their reflective report and publish papers. The thesis can be submitted at the earliest after completion of year 3.

The assessment of the thesis takes place in form of an oral examination undertaken by two examiners, who are experts in your field. One examiner is from LJMU and one is external.


Qualification Study mode Start month Fee Fee locale Course duration
DBA Part-time £ 10,200 (Academic year) Home/EU 4 Years
DBA Part-time £ 11,250 (Academic year) International 4 Years
DBA Part-time January 2020 4 Years

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