In our FAQ list you will find answers to the most
frequently asked questions about the MBA and master's
degree with a focus on Germany, Austria and Switzerland.
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What is an MBA?
The “Master of Business Administration” is probably
the best known degree from the Master family and has its
origin in the USA. An MBA has long been the most popular
degree among master degrees. The title “MBA” has spread
over time and is now recognized worldwide as a degree.
An MBA combines practice and profession with theoretical
knowledge. The course includes several special elements,
such as your own admission process, module formats, the
network concept and the costs.
How long have there been MBA studies?
The first Master Degree in Business was offered in
1902 at Dartmouth College in New Hampshire. The American
concept of practical and excellent business education
caused a sensation. Under the name of Master of Business
Administration (MBA), the program developed into the
most popular graduate degree worldwide.
The first American programs (such as those at
Dartmouth College or Harvard University) were set up in
the United States in the first decades of the 20th
century, because the aim was to secure America's global
economic competitiveness with specific training modules.
The previously existing university, very theoretical and
less innovative study programs were no longer able to
produce competent managers and top managers. These first
MBA programs revolutionized business education.
England followed the United States: From 1910, the
first master's programs were offered at business schools
in Europe. The supply increased rapidly in the first
half of the 20th century. At the same time, the bachelor
degrees were widespread in the economic education
system, so that the MBA programs had a lower number of
graduates than these "undergraduate degrees".
From the 1950s, the importance of MBA programs
continued to increase. The course program was
supplemented by mandatory courses (management,
financing, marketing, accounting). Up until 1950, the
MBA was intended as a deepening and specialization of
knowledge and economic knowledge, but now the focus is
shifting. In addition to technical knowledge, more
attention is being paid to the integration of training
in social skills (leadership skills, team building,
motivation, correct use of available resources).
The 1960s and 1970s saw massive criticism of the MBA
programs. Well-known business magazines predict a steady
decline of these training programs with fewer students
and graduates. Despite the forecasts, the MBA programs
experienced a real boom. More and more programs were
offered in the United States. After the anti-capitalism
mood of the 1960s, the access rate rose again. Students
of other subjects whose work situation had deteriorated
(law, history, philosophy etc.) as well as female
students, members of minorities and international
students hoped for new opportunities from the MBA
The business schools reacted to this trend by
introducing new training methods and modules. The
success of the MBA programs was also reflected in the
above-average earnings of the graduates.
In the 1980s there was a lot of discussion about the
hard work of the young top managers, regardless of
people and the environment. “Materialism” and
“arrogance” were two buzzwords that came up again and
again in this context. As a result, the top schools, in
addition to technical training, are increasingly
focusing on cooperation and social skills. The
information on economic, social and political framework
conditions was integrated into the training program as
well as team leadership, presentation and negotiation
More than at the beginning of the 20th century, top
MBA programs in their module design have to pay
attention to flexibility at a continuously high level.
The boom in MBA programs also brings providers to the
market who do not meet the quality criteria. The MBA is
no longer a direct guarantee of top management training
and expert knowledge, but it can still be.
The profile of the respective business school, i.e.
the design of the training modules, the professional
competence of the trainers and teachers as well as the
international network and the alumni club are, after
almost 100 years of MBA programs, just as important as
the title itself.
Can I also complete an MBA degree in parallel to
Yes, with different options. Either you study
part-time or part-time, via distance learning with only
a few presence times at the business school. A variant
of distance learning, the online course, is becoming
Do I get more salary with an MBA?
A high salary after an MBA degree cannot always be
guaranteed, just like a better position in the company.
The return on investment (ROI) depends on the current
market situation and the respective program in which you
are participating. Basically, it can be said: The more
prestigious a business school is, where you have
completed your studies, the more salary you can expect
after your studies (depending on the branch or division
and vice versa).
In any case, however, a general improvement in the
professional situation is achieved and the personal
career horizon is broadened. You are definitely on the
winning side - after all, by studying a Master of
Business Administration you can deepen your already
acquired knowledge and gain new knowledge.
What is the difference between an MBA and a
The MBA as “Master of Business Administration” is
also a master's degree, but is often seen separately
from all other master's degrees. In contrast to the
consecutive master (as a continuation of a previously
completed bachelor's degree), the MBA is a
non-consecutive form of the degree. This means that the
MBA does not provide further training in the subject of
the main course, but rather provides additional
qualifications for (prospective) managers in general
management programs or for specialists in professional
programs. MBA programs mostly focus on “best practice
approaches” and are less science-oriented (ratio 50:50)
than classic (master) courses (ratio 75:25).
Regardless of whether you are studying for an MBA or
a master's degree: Both can be completed full-time or
part-time, i.e. part-time, but also as a distance or
online course. Depending on the type of study, the
duration of the study program is between 9 and 24 months
(full-time) or 2 and 8 years (part-time). Distance or
online studies can be studied anywhere and at any time.
You can do it at your own desk, so to speak, and the
self-study phases are supplemented by presence phases at
the business school.
An additional distinguishing feature in addition to
the form of study is the specific objective of the
program. While a "Junior MBA program" is aimed primarily
at university graduates, the so-called "Executive MBA
program" offers are aimed more at prospective students
with years of professional experience. or leadership
What is the difference between an MBA and an
The Executive MBA, or EMBA for short, is a special
study program that was developed in addition to the
original MBA (Master of Business Administration). The
degree is completed as part-time part-time programs and
enables a company-related MBA to be completed in a
maximum of two years. It therefore primarily meets the
needs of managers and executives who work full-time and
would like to upgrade their career positions.
The opportunity to acquire an Executive MBA is
usually a very attractive offer for the participant.
Most of the studies are financed or co-financed by the
employer. Because participants can continue to work,
this type of study usually does not include a practical
study semester. The lessons usually take place in the
evenings or on weekends. Since the schedule of an
Executive MBA is very compact, there is very little
specialization that can be dealt with. A lot of time is
required of the participants in an Executive MBA.
What is a MAS?
MAS is in the long form for Master of Advanced
Studies and is a title that you receive especially after
completing a master's degree in Switzerland. The MAS is
advanced training for people with a university degree
and relevant professional experience. It is mainly
acquired as part of a post-graduate course at Swiss
universities and technical colleges.
In Austria the title MAS has been awarded since 1999
and marks the successful completion of a university
course, a course for further education, a university
course or a course with a university character.
In Germany, the MAS is not regarded as an academic
degree, but as a "postgraduate course offer (PGS)".
According to a decision of the Conference of Ministers
of Education on April 14, 2000, it may be run,
specifying the university that conferred the title.
Basically, the MAS is a deepening and specialization
course with different levels, which is not one of the
academic master degrees of the Bologna process.
The Bologna Process is understood to mean the
harmonization of courses and degrees related to Europe,
as well as a transnational university reform aimed at
international student mobility. This aims to create a
single European higher education area. The Bologna
Process is a political-programmatic declaration and has
been in existence since 1999. It was signed by 29
European Ministers of Education in Bologna, Italy.
A MAS degree can be completed in a minimum of 15
months and part-time in about two years, which
corresponds to a workload of around 1,800 hours. In some
cases, a MAS course is also modular. As mentioned at the
beginning, a multi-year professional experience and the
completion of a university (university or university of
applied sciences) or an equivalent qualification are
usually expected for the admission. B. A diploma from a
higher technical school or a higher technical
examination plus qualified professional experience with
managerial or departmental responsibility.
Before deciding on a MAS degree, one should find out
about the international recognition and accreditation of
the degree. The most important accreditation agencies
include AACSB and EQUIS. In Switzerland, the economics
faculties of the Universities of Zurich and Lausanne,
the International Institute for Management Development
in Lausanne and the University of St. Gallen have EQUIS
What does an MBA course cost?
In many cases, the price of an MBA program (only
Master of Business Administration, no other Master)
depends very much on the awareness of a school. As with
other branded products, a partial sum is paid for the
name (ie the “brand”) of the business school. So you
should be very clear about what to expect from the MBA
course, how much budget you have available for it and
whether the chosen course can meet these expectations.
When calculating the costs, one should not only include
the tuition fees and also not neglect the cost of
Does an MBA degree cost more than another master's
The cost of an MBA program is usually much higher
than that of another master. Again, there are
differences between the individual programs, depending
on the institution (whether private or state) and the
country in which the Master of Business Administration
is offered. However, the price should not be seen as a
quality feature of an MBA!
How do I know the quality of an MBA or Masters
In recent years, many new providers have come onto
the market to catch a share of the growing master cake.
Most of them also contribute positively to the MBA and
Master's events in German-speaking countries. After all,
competition stimulates business and special market
demands are served.
In addition to the established top schools, a wide
range of mid-segment providers, mostly with specialized
offers, has developed. In addition, companies have
emerged whose core competency lies more in marketing
participants than in teaching course content. For the
prospective student, these title makers are often
difficult to distinguish from real managers. Most of
these providers operate within the legal framework.