Core modules

The core modules of the Lancaster Full-time MBA build the foundations for the action learning projects and your later elective work. 

Term 1 – The Autumn

The first term modules provide essential knowledge and skills in areas which may be entirely new to you, or a welcome refresher in more familiar areas. We also get you started on your journey to becoming a Mindful Manager.

The Mindful Manager – focuses on the development of your practical wisdom; your ability to make decisions in the volatile, uncertain, complex and ambiguous world of business management.

Leading Mindfully – here we will help you to explore your understanding of leading, and will develop your capability to lead others.

Core Capabilities – designed to help you to develop the skills that are vital to effective managing and leading. We focus on three things: your cognitive conduct, your collaborative conduct and, most crucially, your reflectivity.

Digital Innovation in Business – will provide an essential foundation for understanding the critical role of information and information technologies in modern business environments, equipping you with vital knowledge for a business leader in the 21st century.

Finance 1 – provides the fundamental principles of management and financial accounting that will enable you to analyse financial statements, including balance sheets, profit and loss accounts and cash flow statements.

Microeconomics – serves as an introduction to the economist's view of competitive and co-operative behavior. You will rapidly cover the basics of microeconomic theory and move to study game theory.

Marketing – equips you with the core vocabulary of the Marketing discipline, from Product and Service marketing to Branding, Pricing and Integrated Marketing Communication. Through case study work, you also develop your capacity to develop ‘go-to-market’ strategies.

Operations Management – shows how properly-managed operations can be a source of competitive advantage. This module covers issues relevant to both manufacturing and service companies.

Business Management Challenge – a competitive real-world simulation which drives you to integrate and apply the knowledge gained in the first term to the complex business issues involved in the expansion of a start-up business.

Term 2 – The Spring

The core modules in the second term take an increasingly strategic focus. The Mindful Manager, Core Capabilities and Leading Mindfully modules continue throughout this term.

Finance 2 – takes a practical look at the basics of corporate financial management. It covers issues such as cash budgeting and financial planning, stakeholder value, investment appraisal, raising capital, risks and returns, capital structures, leasing analysis, mergers and acquisitions and the management of working capital.

Macroeconomics – explores the main drivers of change in the broader economic context within which firms operate, distinguishing between short-term episodes and long-term trends, and recognising the roles played by trade, government policy and business behavior in shaping the wider market/business environment. 

Organising Behaviour – provides you with a broad theoretical and practical understanding of some key concepts and issues in organisational behaviour, and their implications for managing the human resources of organisations at a time of disjunctive change and the globalisation of markets.

Strategic Management –develops your understanding of strategy both as a ‘science’ and as an ‘art’. On one level you will be taking an essentially analytical perspective, studying the traditional ‘toolbox’ of strategy as a business discipline. On the other, most crucially, you will gain practical exposure to strategy development by engaging in strategy-making and reflection.

Entrepreneurial Challenge – you will work in a team to conceive a business idea and produce a business plan for your company; researching the market, developing a marketing strategy and considering how your business might be organised and financed in the future.

International Business in Context – here you leave Lancaster and the UK on an intensive one-week study tour of an emerging economy, where you can experience for yourself the challenges and opportunities such economies present for businesses. (Costs for the visit are included within the programme fee.)

Term 3 – The Summer

Consultancy Challenge – in this four-week module you are introduced to various consultancy skills and conceptual thinking tools. You then work in teams on client-based projects, analysing a problem faced by the organisation and making recommendations as to how that situation could be managed.

Responsible Management and Ethics – explores the ethical, social, developmental and ecological issues that are encountered, and have to be contended with, in international business management.

Corporate Challenge

The Corporate Challenge is the fourth of the Lancaster MBA’s action-learning challenges, and builds on the Business Management Challenge, the Entrepreneurial Challenge, and the Consultancy Challenge. This business-based consulting project takes place over two months in the summer. The project is the climax of the MBA; it pulls together all the learning of the year, and sometimes it leads directly to offers of employment.