Tips for Duke Fuqua’s Application

Which MBA Delivery Option Is Right For You?

There are several delivery options when it comes to the MBA degree.

Whether it’s the traditional two-year program, One-Year Accelerated, Part-Time, Executive, Online, or Global, applicants have a variety of degree types they can choose from.

Stacy Blackman, of Stacy Blackman Consulting, recently discussed attributes of each and how applicants can decide which delivery option is right for them.


The accelerated MBA is suited for those who want to continue working in the same industry but would like to either improve on their skillset or rise up the ladder.

It’s important to note, however, that recruiters don’t have a preference for candidates who have completed the traditional two-year program vs. the one-year, Blackman says.

“This MBA delivery option is both a time and money saver,” she writes. “It often provides a faster return on investment as participants endure only one year of lost income. While the accelerated MBA option doesn’t allow for internships, students return to the workforce after 12 months.”

Applicants should know that the one-year degree isn’t easy.

“This degree is time-consuming and requires intense focus,” Blackman writes. “Therefore, applicants must come onto the scene with a strong background in business fundamentals. Many programs show a definite preference for those with an undergraduate business degree.”


The Executive MBA is made for mid-career professionals who plan to continue working as they pursue their degree.

“They may be looking to switch industries, or to transition from manager to entrepreneur,” Blackman writes. “A demanding family life may also make it impossible to take advantage of the extracurricular activities available to traditional full-time MBA students, which may make an EMBA more desirable.”

Additionally, Blackman notes, EMBAs need to be sure they are receiving support from their employers prior to applying.

“This format requires some time out of the office for week-long residencies or classes held on alternate Fridays,” she writes.

While employers in the past tended to pay for 100% of EMBAs, fewer are willing to pay for the total costs today.

Top MBA recommends that prospective applicants build a strong case around their EMBA before asking their employer for financial support.

“Prepare a strong case, including the benefits for the business, and discuss with your employer the ROI (return on investment) to your company of investing in you,” according to Top MBA. “If your employer is not prepared to fund you 100%, then consider how your company could still provide you with financial support through matching funding, percentage splits, reduced hours, salary sacrifice, bonus payments, and tuition reimbursement at key milestones or after successful completion of the program.”


Business schools are increasingly offering the option of earning the MBA degree online. This may be especially helpful if you’re unwilling or unable to leave your job to pursue the degree.

“In today’s global business environment, much of the day-to-day interaction takes place remotely, via E-mail, text, or video conference,” Blackman writes. “An online MBA format maximizes these technologies and perhaps even better prepares tomorrow’s business leaders for navigating within the dominant communication methods.”


Blackman says the traditional MBA is still the ‘gold standard’ when it comes to MBA education.

“The full-immersion experience is invaluable for the networking opportunities and alumni connections it provides,” Blackman writes. “It also provides a unique time for MBA students to reflect on and reconsider their career paths.”

Despite this, at the end of the day, choosing which MBA delivery option is a personal choice.

“In reality, every candidate has his or her own unique needs that must be aligned with the format that makes the most sense,” Blackman writes. “Whichever MBA delivery option you choose for your b-school journey, a great fit with your goals and lifestyle will ensure the best results from application to graduation.”

Sources: Stacy Blackman Consulting, Top MBA

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