Our previous blog looked at dual degree options at eight top business schools: Booth, Columbia, Fuqua, Haas, Harvard, IE, INSEAD, and Kellogg. This week, we’re covering nine more.
Is an MBA dual-degree program the right choice for you?
When it comes to dual-degree programs (also referred to as joint degrees at some schools), the key takeaway is “more”.
Pursing a joint degree gives you more flexibility to pursue a career path you’re interested in, more field-specific knowledge than a general management degree alone, and more credibility to employers within your target industry.
There is another side to the “more”, though: dual-degree programs take more time to complete than pursing an MBA alone, and cost more as well. The admissions process is also typically more involved, as most schools require students to apply (and be accepted) to each degree program separately.
Fortunately, an MBA is an excellent complement to almost any graduate degree, as evidenced by the impressive array of dual-degree options on offer from the business schools on our list. Everything from forestry to biology to divinity can be combined with an MBA, in addition to traditional choices like JD/ MBA and MPH/ MBA degree pairings.
If you decide to combine your MBA with another graduate degree, do your research before deciding on a target school. With so many programs available, you want to find exactly the right fit for your career interests, at a school that will be a good fit for you.
MIT Sloan School of Management
MIT offers two joint degree programs for Sloan business school students. In conjunction with the MIT School of Engineering, the school offers a MIT Leaders for Global Operations program, which grants students both an MBA and a MS in Engineering.
The LGO program is designed to be intensely hands-on, with students gaining experience in manufacturing and operations, as well as an understanding of leadership theories and best practices. As part of the two-year program, students spend six months in an “operations challenge” internship. Previous partner corporations have included Amazon, Boeing, Dell, GM, Massachusetts General Hospital, and Nike.
In conjunction with the Harvard Kennedy School of Government, Sloan students are able to pair their MBA with a Masters in Public Administration or a Masters in Public Policy. Depending on the choice of program, the dual degree can be completed in three to four years. This pairing of prestigious degrees is a good fit for students preparing for a career in economic development or international management, or in a role that requires significant interaction with government regulation.
NYU Stern School of Business
NYU Stern offers a wide variety of dual degree options, allowing students the freedom to shape their career path in a number of specific ways:
– MD/ MBA – Offered in partnership with the NYU Stern School of Medicine. The five-year program is designed for students who envision a career path with responsibilities in addition to the practice of medicine: opening a private practice, consulting within the pharmaceutical industry, directing a healthcare agency. Students spend their first three years at the School of Medicine, then split the following two years between Stern and the medical school.
– JD/ MBA – Offered in partnership with the NYU School of Law. The dual JD/ MBA program gives NYU students a foundational understanding of finance, operations, and management strategy, along with a rigorous legal education, that will serve them well in corporate legal roles, big law firms, or nonprofit agencies. The program consists of four years of study across three semesters at Stern and five at the law school.
– MFA/ MBA – Offered through the Kanbar Institute of Film and Television at NYU’s Tisch School of the Arts, the MFA/ MBA is a unique joint degree for students who want to combine the creativity and industry insight of a film degree with the rigorous leadership and management skills of a business degree. The program lasts three years, with the first year completed at NYU Stern, the second at Kanbar, and the final year split between both schools.
– MBA/ MS in Mathematics – Offered in partnership with NYU’s Courant Institute of Mathematical Sciences. Quantitative skills are an important part of any MBA program, but this MBA/ MS program allows students to hone their quantitative skills even further, whether it’s for a career in FinTech or any other quantitative/ business field. The program is completed in two and a half years, with one year at each school and the remainder split between the two.
– MPA/ MBA – Offered in conjunction with the Robert F. Wagner Graduate School of Public Service. For students who want to use their leadership skills to solve governmental challenges at the local or national levels, this combination of an MBA and a Masters in Public Administration will give them the theoretical and practical tools they need. The program requires three years to complete, split between 51 credits at NYU Stern and 33 credits at NYU Wagner.
– MBA/ MA in French Studies – Offered in partnership with the NYU Institute of French Studies. This two-and-a-half-year program is a natural fit for students who are looking to do business in or with France, with a curriculum that emphasizes France’s history, politics, economy, and society in addition to the business skills of the MBA courses.
– MBA/ MS in Biology – Offered in conjunction with the NYU Graduate School of Arts and Sciences. The three-year program gives students deep insight into the life sciences, and prepares them for a career on the cutting edge of the intersection between business and biology.
In addition to their traditional dual degree programs, NYU Stern also offers students the ability to gain global exposure with a joint degree offered in conjunction with HEC Paris School of Management. Students choose to complete their core courses at one school and their electives/ personalized curriculum at the other. The course load and structure is the same in both cases, and at the end of the program, students are awarded an MBA from both Stern and HEC Paris.
Oxford Saïd Business School
The Saïd Business School offers one of the most comprehensive and unique dual-degree programs of all the world’s top MBA programs. Through their 1+1 MBA, Oxford students are able to pair a Saïd MBA with a masters degree from any of thirteen separate departments within Oxford University – a total of more than 25 different dual-degree options.
In addition to more typical combinations like a combined MBA/ Masters in Public Policy or MBA/ Masters in Education, Saïd students are able to combine their MBA program with masters degrees from the School of Geography and the Environment (e.g. Masters in Biodiversity, Conservation, and Management), the Centre for Criminology (e.g. Masters in Criminology and Criminal Justice), Oxford Internet Institute (e.g. Masters of Social Science and the Internet), and the School of Anthropology and Museum Ethnography (e.g. Masters in Cognitive and Evolutionary Anthropology).
As indicated by the program name, Oxford 1+1 students spend a total of two years in the dual degree program. The first year is spent developing their expertise in the Masters program, and the second year gaining leadership and foundational business skills in the Saïd MBA program.
Ross School of Business
Similar to Saïd’s 1+1 program, Michigan’s Ross School of Business offers a dual-degree program with more than 20 established offerings, as well as the opportunity for students to design their own dual degree. The school has a robust area studies offering for dual-degree students, offering the ability to specialize in several regions: South Asia, Southeast Asia, Japan, Asian Studies, Modern Middle East, and Russia and Eastern Europe.
Ross also offers several standard degree pairings, including a four-year JD/ MBA and a five-year MD/ MBA. Dual degree offerings in public policy (MPP/ MBA), social work (MSW/ MBA), health services (MPH/ MBA or MHSA/ MBA), and architecture (two- or three-year M. Arch/ MBA), among other options, round out the non-engineering choices.
Dual-degree students have several options to specialize within the engineering discipline. In conjunction with the Rackham School of Graduate Studies, the school offers combined degrees in construction engineering (MBA/ MSE-CE&M), industrial and operations engineering (MBA/ MS-IOE), manufacturing engineering (MBA/ MEM), and naval architecture (MBA/ MSE-NA&ME).
In addition to their broad spectrum of available degree programs, Ross offers students the ability to design a program of their own if they are interested in a degree that is not an established offering. Students who are looking to pursue a Student Initiated Dual Degree (SIDD) must apply (and be accepted) separately to each school, submit a year-by-year curriculum plan for their desired program combination, and complete academic requirements for both degrees.
Stanford Graduate School of Business
At Stanford Graduate School of Business, students are encouraged to pursue their academic interests, regardless of the discipline or school those interests might be categorized under. They offer their students several different ways to immerse themselves in courses from non-MBA programs, believing that “[t]his flexibility leads to a rich and valuable academic experience.”
As a result, more than one in five students pursing an MBA at Stanford takes advantage of a joint or dual degree program. Stanford defines the two options slightly differently, specifying that students enrolled in a joint degree program are able to apply credit from a single course toward both degrees. The joint degree programs offered by Stanford are:
-JD/ MBA: A four-year program offered in conjunction with Stanford Law School. Students have the option to complete the degree in 11 or 12 quarters, with 11-quarter students able to take their final Winter quarter off to prepare for the bar exam.
-MBA/ MA in Education: A two to two-and-a-half-year program offered in conjunction with the Stanford Graduate School of Education, designed for students with an interest in educational policy, management, or technology.
-MPP/ MBA: This three-year program is offered with the School of Humanities and Sciences. Students focus on MBA courses during their first year, split the second year, and spend three quarters of their third year in the MPP’s practicum course working on real-world policy issues with an outside client.
-MBA/ MS in Computer Science: A three-year program offered in conjunction with the world-class Stanford Computer Science Department.
-MBA/ MS in Electrical Engineering: Three-year program with the Electrical Engineering Department.
-MBA/ MS in Environment and Resources: This three-year program combines business and leadership principles with science courses from the School of Earth, Energy, and Environmental Sciences, as well as other departments at Stanford, to give students the knowledge to lead and innovate on environmental issues and technologies.
Stanford also offers two dual-degree programs for its MBA students: a five-year MD/ MBA offered in conjunction with the Stanford School of Medicine, and a three-year MBA/ MA in International Studies. In addition, the school allows MBA students to pursue joint or dual degrees from external universities alongside their Stanford degree. Partner universities include the Harvard Kennedy School and Medical School, Johns Hopkins School of Advanced International Studies, Princeton Woodrow Wilson School of Public and International Affairs, and Yale Law and Medical Schools.
Dartmouth Tuck School of Business
Tuck offers eight combined-degree programs for its students. Like Stanford GSB, Tuck differentiates between joint-degree and dual-degree programs; however, Tuck defines joint degrees as programs within Dartmouth college and dual degrees as programs offered in partnership with other institutions.
Within Dartmouth, there are three joint-degree programs offered: an MD/ MBA, an MPH/ MBA, and a PhD/ MBA:
-The MD/ MBA is offered with the Geisel School of Medicine, and can be completed in five or six years. The school makes it explicit that work experience is not required for this program, which is aimed at students with an interest in biotech, HMO management, non-profit and governmental health organizations, and the pharmaceutical industry.
– The MPH/ MBA is offered with the Dartmouth Institute for Health Policy and Clinical Practice, with a curriculum addressing public health issues in both the public and private sectors.
– The PhD/ MBA program functions as essentially an “add-on” program, allowing students who are currently pursuing their PhD with Dartmouth to deepen their management and business knowledge without having to first leave academia for workforce experience.
In addition to the three joint-degree programs, Tuck offers five dual-degree programs in partnership with other institutions:
– A three-year MBA/ MA in International Studies program in conjunction with the Johns Hopkins School of Advanced International Studies.
-A three-year MBA/ MA in Law and Diplomacy (MALD) with The Fletcher School at Tufts University, designed for students whose interests lie at the intersection of international relations and business management.
-An MBA/ Master of Environmental Law and Policy with Vermont Law School, designed for students who want to shape the way business and environmental concerns affect one another over the coming years.
-An MBA/ MPA or MBA/ MPA-ID with the Harvard Kennedy School.
-An MBA/ MPP with the Harvard Kennedy School.
Darden School of Business
The University of Virginia’s Darden School of Business offers a total of ten dual-degree programs in conjunction with various other schools and departments within the University of Virginia:
-JD/ MBA: Four-year program offered with the UVA School of Law.
-MD/ MBA: Five-year program (including summers) offered with the UVA School of Medicine.
-M.ED/ MBA: Two year program offered with the Curry School of Education, with a focus on innovation in education reform.
-MPP/ MBA: Three-year program offered with the Frank Batten School of Leadership and Public Policy.
-MPH/ MBA: Three-year program (including two summers) offered with the Department of Public Health Sciences.
-MBA/ MA in East Asian Studies: Three-year program which includes a field internship in an East Asian location, in addition to immersive language and area studies.
-MBA/ MA in Government or Foreign Affairs: Offered with the Graduate School of Arts and Sciences.
-ME/ MBA: Offered with the School of Engineering and Applied Sciences, combining technical skills with a foundational understanding of management and business best practices.
-MSN/ MBA: Offered with the School of Nursing.
-PhD/ MBA: Five-year program that allows students to devote their first year of study to business education, before delving into their doctoral work.
Wharton School of Business
Interdisciplinary program options at the University of Pennsylvania’s Wharton School of Business take two forms: integrated programs offered within U. Penn, and dual-degree partnership programs with other universities.
The school offers a total of twelve interdisciplinary programs, including:
-MBA/ MA in International Studies: the Lauder Program allows students to combine their MBA with an international studies program focusing on Africa; Latin America; Europe; South Asia and MENA; or East and Southeast Asia.
-JD/ MBA: Three-year program offered in conjunction with U. Penn’s prestigious law school, and known as the Francis J. and Wm. Polk Carey JD/ MBA program.
–MBA in Health Care Management: A 22-month program which features dedicated faculty, a focus on connecting with influencers, and a broad, segment-spanning curriculum.
Other interdisciplinary Wharton programs include combined degrees with the Johns Hopkins School of Advanced International Studies, the Harvard Kennedy School, the Penn Design School, and Penn schools of Medicine, Nursing, Arts and Sciences, Social Policy and Practice, and Veterinary Medicine.
Yale School of Management
Yale offers nine different cross-discipline programs, all of which are designed to “prepare leaders who will bring a broad understanding and analytical thinking to whatever industry they work in.” Yale’s dual-degree programs include:
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–JD/ MBA: Both a standard four-year and an accelerated three-year program are offered in combination with Yale Law School. Students taking the accelerated program are able to complete both degrees in six semesters, without the need for summer coursework.
-MEM/ MBA or MF/ MBA: Yale SOM has offered combination management-environment degrees since 1982, preparing students to tackle the challenges of navigating the intersection of business interests and environmental needs. Both the Master of Forestry and Master of Environmental Management are three-year programs offered in conjunction with the Yale School of Forestry & Environmental Studies and administered through the Yale Center for Business & the Environment.
-MBA/ MA in Global Relations: The three-year program is offered in conjunction with the Jackson Institute for Global Affairs, and replaces Yale’s previous MA in International Relations.
-MD/ MBA: The Yale School of Medicine and School of Management pair up to offer this five-year degree. Students are required to complete a primary care clerkship, along with a thesis and the other degree requirements for their MD, and encouraged but not required to take part in the year-long Healthcare Management Colloquium during their fifth year.
-MPH/ MBA: In conjunction with the Yale School of Public Health, students are able to completed a three-year combined MPH/ MBA program, or the new two-year intensive MPH/ MBA – the first such program in the United States.
-MBA/ M.Arch: Four-year program offered in combination with the Yale School of Architecture.
-MFA/ MBA: Three-year program offered in combination with the Yale School of Drama.
-MAR/ MBA or MDIV/ MBA: Both the Master of Arts in Religion and Master of Divinity are unique three-year combined programs offered with the Yale School of Divinity, and designed for students interested in church management or non-profits with a religious affiliation.
–PhD/ MBA: As with the Tuck and Darden programs, the Yale PhD/ MBA program is a highly customized dual-degree option which allows students to complete an MBA in conjunction with their studies through the Graduate School of Arts and Sciences. The program typically requires seven years to complete, and students do not begin their time at Yale SOM until they have passed their PhD qualifying exams.
Considering a dual degree?
For students planning on pursuing a joint degree, the choices can be overwhelming: we’ve covered nearly 200 different dual-degree programs spread across the 17 business schools on our list.
If you’d like help narrowing down your options – and creating an effective application package – EXPARTUS can help. Get in touch with us today for a free MBA application assessment, or learn more about what we can do to help you get admitted.