Doctorate of Business Administration (Part Time) - DBA

Attendance:
Part Time
Starting:
September 2016, February 2017
Campus:
Fees:
£7,125 per year for UK/EU Part Time 2016 entry (view all fees)
Back
In order to get you to the correct application form, we need to ask you a couple of questions:
1

Our Doctorate of Business Administration (DBA) course is explicitly intended to assist mid-career professional managers who wish to develop themselves as ‘scholar-practitioners’. The modules taught are based on appreciating the range of methodological approaches to carry out research based upon consideration of theoretical aspects of your organisation’s practice.

Our DBA will ensure that you:

  • Understand the basis of management theory and the models presented
  • Give you opportunities to engage in collaborative appraisal of intellectual ideas
  • Allow you to explore aspects of organisational practice and seek improvement through the application of theoretical concepts
  • Develop your learning and ability to critically reflect through thinking and writing
  • Enhance awareness of strategic issues
  • Create opportunities to use tools and techniques to take better decisions
  • Write a research-based thesis on a topic of interest or concern in your organisation.

Find out more about Birmingham City Business School!

What's covered in the course?

The DBA (in contrast to a traditional academic PhD) is designed to help you apply research-based thinking to business ideas, whilst deepening and broadening your understanding of professional practice. You will also develop essential research skills which will enable you to play a leading role in strategic organisational development, policy formation and evaluation at a strategic level.

The programme addresses strategic issues in professional practice globally, and places a high priority on the beneficial transfer of knowledge to the workplace. There will be a balance of intellectual scholarly enquiry with an applied problem-focused approach of direct relevance to your organisation.

The course combines workshops, research based activities and a substantial research enquiry thesis to:

  • Enable you to focus on your own or participating organisations in a new way, based on a doctoral level understanding
  • Enhance management professional practice by developing and applying new knowledge
  • Empower you to improve your own personal practice as a professional
  • Employ new learning in change management and organisational development
  • Extend the range of ideas and skills to deliver change within your own or participating organisation
  • Enjoy considerable personal development, so that you achieve a greater level of effectiveness as a professional
  • Develop an action research/learning approach to organisational problems
  • Encourage critical engagement with consultancy and research processes.

The programme is intended to help you apply theory and professional practice perspectives to your own situation and work-based practice, and on completion, you may consider putting the thesis forward for publication.

This course is open to International students

Birmingham City Business School

Discover Birmingham City Business School

Visit our School site for more student work and extra information.

Visit the School website

Big decision

We appreciate the prospect of studying on a DBA programme is a very big decision. If you would like an informal chat at an early stage in the process (prior to or after) going through the course text supplied) please contact Dr Steve McCabe, Director of Research Programmes by email: steve.mccabe@bcu.ac.uk or by phone: 0121 331 5178.

Entry Requirements

UK students
Essential

To join the DBA programme, you must have completed an MA, MSc or MBA degree in a particular area of business-related professional practice, and also have relevant experience in a professional capacity.

Alternatively, you must have at least five years related professional practice experience, as well as being employed in the professional capacity that you propose to study.

You must have the formal agreement and active co-operation of the organisation where the DBA studies are to take place.

Please note, the course is only offered as a part-time programme.

UK or EU students

Award Start Mode Duration Fees
DBA Sep 2016 PT 4 years £7,125 per year
Feb 2017 PT 4 years £7,125 per year

If you're unable to use the online form for any reason, you can complete our PDF application form instead.

International Students

Award Start Mode Duration Fees
DBA Sep 2016 PT 4 years £11,500 per year
Feb 2017 PT 4 years £11,500 per year

If you're unable to use the online form for any reason, you can complete our PDF application form instead.

The University reserves the right to increase fees broadly in line with increases in inflation, or to reflect changes in government funding policies or changes agreed by Parliament.

How to apply - further information

If you're unable to use the online form for any reason, you can complete our pdf application form instead.

Applicants for a DBA research degree are encouraged to submit ideas in the form of the online application form together with an outline DBA proposal (guidelines for preparing the proposal are available here). If the Business School is able to identify an appropriate supervisory team you will be invited to attend a formal interview. If you require any assistance with the proposal, please contact Dr. Steven McCabe Director of Research Degree Programmes: steve.mccabe@bcu.ac.uk

Following a satisfactory interview and subject to meeting other university entrance requirements, you will be invited to enrol on the programme. Once you have enrolled you will be required to formally register your DBA proposal with the University Research Degrees Committee. You will be guided in this process by your supervisory team and by participating in the taught elements of the Postgraduate Certificate in Research Practice and the Professional Practice elements of the course.

Your personal statement

Your personal statement is a highly important part of your application. It gives you a crucial opportunity to say why you’re applying and why the institution should accept you.

Here are the key areas you’ll need to address:

Course choice

Why does this course appeal? What areas are of particular interest?

Career plans

If you have a specific career in mind, say how your chosen course will help you pursue this goal.

Work experience

Mention any work that is relevant to your subject, highlighting the skills and experience gained.

School or college experience

Highlight skills gained at school/college, eg summer schools or mentoring activities.

Non-accredited skills or achievement

eg Duke of Edinburgh Award, Young Enterprise scheme.

You should also mention your future plans – if you’re planning to take a year out, don't forget to give your reasons. Talk about any subjects you’re studying that don’t have a formal assessment and any sponsorships or placements you’ve applied for. And don't be scared to add in details about your social, sports or leisure interests.

Get more information on writing personal statements.

This course is available part-time

Got any questions?

Search our Frequently Asked Questions for a range of information about our courses and studying here.

Stage One

Research methods

Research methods will enable you to develop an appreciation of the key concepts of your chosen study and how they may be used as the basis of the research. This element requires a written submission of no more than 2,500 words.

Research skills

Research skills will provide you with an ability to select appropriate methods that will enable you to connect the concepts identified in research methods with the aspects of practice that you will explore. This includes the effective capture of relevant ‘data’ (experiences and observations). This module will require a written submission of no more than 3,500 words.

Professional Practice

Professional Practice provides you with a critical awareness of issues such as professionalism, ethics and methods that will allow exploration of how they occur in practice and enable reflection. This element will require a written submission of no more than 5,000 words.

Stage Two

Research Perspectives - Perspective One

Perspective One is based on an account of a small-scale study utilising techniques and methods consistent with approaches found in the scientific method, ‘positivism’. This includes the gathering of data through questionnaires or standard interview schedules and analysis by statistics. Such methods are frequently referred to as being ‘quantitative’. This element requires a written submission of no more than 5,000 words.

Research Perspectives - Perspective Two

Perspective Two is based on a limited study of an organisation (or group) and utilises approaches used by those attempting to gain insights and understanding of social processes. Such methods are usually referred to as being ‘qualitative’. This element requires a written submission of no more than 5,000 words.

Advanced Professional Practice

Advanced Professional Practice builds upon the professional practice element and provides the opportunity for deeper exploration of key issues and encourages you to critically reflect on relevant aspects of practice and their relationship with theory by adopting a specific evaluation paradigm (eg evaluative inquiry, appreciative inquiry or design). This element is intended as the final stage to commencing stage three (thesis). It will require a written submission of no more than 5,000 words.

Stage Three

Research Thesis

Stage three is the culmination of the programme and will enable you to write up your experiences in a research thesis. This describes the experience of developing the enquiry, how you selected concepts and applied relevant concepts from theory and your application in practice.

The thesis is examined by the use of what is known as ‘viva voce’ which is Latin for ‘with the living voice’ and requires you to provide what is an oral defence of your work.

Course Structure

Each DBA research degree student is supported by supervisors assigned to the particular area of study. Supervisors will be experts in the subject area, with a mutual interest in the particular study. They will be active researchers themselves with a wealth of experience in supervising postgraduate research.

The structure consists of six ‘taught’ elements and a thesis which intends to develop your expertise in the use of research in order to explore professional practice:

Stage one
  • Research methods* will enable you to develop an appreciation of the key concepts of your chosen study and how they may be used as the basis of the research. This element requires a written submission of no more than 2,500 words.
  • Research skills* will provide you with an ability to select appropriate methods that will enable you to connect the concepts identified in research methods with the aspects of practice that you will explore. This includes the effective capture of relevant ‘data’ (experiences and observations). This module will require a written submission of no more than 3,500 words.

* successful completion of these elements results in the award of a Postgraduate Certificate in Research Practice.

  • Professional Practice provides you with a critical awareness of issues such as professionalism, ethics and methods that will allow exploration of how they occur in practice and enable reflection. This element will require a written submission of no more than 5,000 words.
Stage two

Research Perspectives which has two parts:

Perspective One is based on an account of a small-scale study utilising techniques and methods consistent with approaches found in the scientific method, ‘positivism’. This includes the gathering of data through questionnaires or standard interview schedules and analysis by statistics. Such methods are frequently referred to as being ‘quantitative’. This element requires a written submission of no more than 5,000 words.

Perspective Two is based on a limited study of an organisation (or group) and utilises approaches used by those attempting to gain insights and understanding of social processes. Such methods are usually referred to as being ‘qualitative’. This element requires a written submission of no more than 5,000 words.

Advanced Professional Practice builds upon the professional practice element and provides the opportunity for deeper exploration of key issues and encourages you to critically reflect on relevant aspects of practice and their relationship with theory by adopting a specific evaluation paradigm (eg evaluative inquiry, appreciative inquiry or design). This element is intended as the final stage to commencing stage three (thesis). It will require a written submission of no more than 5,000 words.

Stage three

Stage three is the culmination of the programme and will enable you to write up your experiences in a research thesis. This describes the experience of developing the enquiry, how you selected concepts and applied relevant concepts from theory and your application in practice.

The thesis is examined by the use of what is known as ‘viva voce’ which is Latin for ‘with the living voice’ and requires you to provide what is an oral defence of your work.

Big decision

We appreciate the prospect of studying on a DBA programme is a very big decision. If you would like an informal chat at an early stage in the process (prior to or after) going through the course text supplied) please contact Dr Steve McCabe, Director of Research Programmes by email: steve.mccabe@bcu.ac.uk or by phone: 0121 331 5178.

OpportUNIty

OpportUNIty Student Ambassador

OpportUNIty: Student Jobs on Campus ensures that our students are given a first opportunity to fill many part-time temporary positions within the University. This allows you to work while you study with us, fitting the job around your course commitments. By taking part in the scheme, you will gain valuable experiences and employability skills, enhancing your prospects in the job market.

It will also allow you to become more involved in University life by delivering, leading and supporting many aspects of the learning experience, from administration to research and mentoring roles.

International Students

Birmingham City University is a vibrant and multicultural university in the heart of a modern and diverse city. We welcome many international students every year – there are currently students from more than 80 countries among our student community.

The University is conveniently placed, with Birmingham International Airport nearby and first-rate transport connections to London and the rest of the UK.

Our international pages contain a wealth of information for international students who are considering applying to study here, including:

Birmingham City University International College (BCUIC)

International students who have a serious interest in studying with us but who perhaps cannot meet the direct entry requirements, academic or English, or who have been out of education for some time, can enter Birmingham City University International College (BCUIC) and begin their degree studies.

BCUIC

BCUIC is part of the global Navitas Group, an internationally recognised education provider, and the partnership allows students to access the University’s facilities and services and move seamlessly through to achieving a Bachelor’s degree from Birmingham City University.

Learn more about BCUIC

Curzon facilities eatery
Curzon facilities staircase
Curzon facilities student hub

Our Facilities

We are constantly investing in our estate and are currently in the process of spending £260 million on new learning facilities.

The Curzon Building

This course will be held at our newest facility, The Curzon Building, part of our City Centre Campus.

The £63 million building provides you with a unique learning space, featuring plenty of informal ‘break out’ areas available, creating an open, sociable atmosphere. There is also a new home for the Students’ Union, with its location moving to the restored Victorian pub The Eagle and Ball. Both City North and Millennium Point libraries have moved to the new building.

The dedicated social learning spaces ensure you’ll have the perfect facilities to work independently and confidently, having the time and support you need.

All this ensures that The Curzon Building is a vital support hub and a true central location for students in Birmingham City Centre.

Dr Steve McCabe

Director of Research Degrees

Having graduated from the University of Manchester in 1984 with a degree in management, Dr McCabe spent time in industry as a management trainee before commencing an EPSRC research-sponsored MSc in Management at Birmingham University in 1988.

Since 1989 he has been employed at Birmingham City University as a management lecturer (teaching general and human resources, as well as strategy and operations but with a special emphasis on TQM, improvement techniques and benchmarking).

As well as teaching, Steven  is an active researcher and completed a Ph.D on a part-time basis at the University of Birmingham which explored the use of quality management techniques. He has written extensively on the subject of management and quality and has produced numerous papers, chapters for books and three books (see publications tab). He is currently working with Professor John Sparrow on a HEIF project (‘Development of value-adding business support need diagnostic: Timeliness and focus of business/management business development support’) which is exploring the way in which small and medium-sized businesses make key decisions about future direction (strategy). In particular the research aims to identify the nature of factors that contribute to what are known as ‘tipping points’.

Read Dr McCabe's blog posts on Views@BCU

UK prospective students:

UK enquiry form

+44 (0)121 331 5595

EU / International prospective students:

International enquiry form

+44 (0)121 331 5389

Already applied?

Email the applications team

+44 (0)121 331 6295