Master of Business Administration (MBA)
The Master of Business Administration (MBA) programme of the Graduate School of Business (GSB), The University of the South Pacific (USP) has become a market leader among Pacific Island states with an excellent regional reputation for quality and relevance. These characteristics have contributed greatly to the rise in enrolments over the decade and to the graduation of over 2131 students. The programme not only makes a much-needed and appreciated contribution to addressing the shortage of skilled managers in the region but also gives kudos and a healthy flow of funds to USP. At a personal level, graduates reported their high appreciation of the blending of theory and practice while the 2007 Tracer Study found that USP’s MBA graduates experienced an average 66 per cent salary increase compared to their pre – MBA incomes. Staff on the MBA programme, both academic and administrative, were found to be well qualified, able and highly committed. They have been keys to the success of the programme.
The review team was very impressed with the high quality of both the academic staff of The University of the South Pacific (USP) Graduate School of Business (GSB), as well as the program offered. The teaching facilities are of international standard and are entirely adequate for current requirements. The Master of Business Administration programme is in excellent financial shape, with an appropriate student fee structure.
A “Superior” MBA Programme, Respected by the World. USP’s MBA Programme has been commended for achieving international-level excellence and strong regional relevance by Professors Philip Williams of the University of Melbourne in Australia and Stanley Shapiro of Canada’s Simon Fraser University. Professors Shapiro and Williams had personally reviewed the Programme in 1999.
According to Professor Williams, “I have been very impressed by what the USP MBA Programme has achieved in only a few years. The value of the Programme is appreciated by alumni and current students. It is an extraordinary testament to the USP and to the staff of its MBA Programme that it has started to offer a high-quality international Programme while it receives little subsidy.” Professor Williams applauded the Programme’s clear focus on training professional managers, whose needs are quite different from those of purely academic researchers. Compared with competitor MBA Programmes, he asserted: “The USP MBA is positioned at the high end of the market. The USP Programme offers instructors with superior academic credentials, far more contact time with faculty members, a curriculum that is more demanding, and far greater opportunities for co-operative learning from one’s fellow students.”
Both professors were impressed by the caliber of the USP MBA students and graduates – they are “similar to MBA students at the world’s top schools, ”
Professor Shapiro found that: “The MBA offering at USP is superior to the Australian competition. Also, and the importance of this can never be over-emphasised, this MBA programme is not only taught in the South Pacific but deals appropriately with the problems of managing in the South Pacific. Indeed the USP MBA has moved more quickly in the direction of an appropriate local focus than have most other MBAs servicing developing areas. That courses are now being offered in Lautoka also is a very positive development.”
The programme has a very positive effect both on the professional lives of its graduates and on the organisations at which both past graduates and present students are employed. Much of the programme’s strength and its subsequent positive effect on careers seems due to its heavy emphasis on team building and group projects.”
Programme Review, 1999, Professors Shapiro and Williams
The MBA Programme is consists of 12 courses. These can be completed in one year study full-time, or two to four years of part-time. There are three trimesters. The three trimesters are 12 weeks long; full-time students take four (4) courses during each of these trimesters. Part-time students take one (1) or two (2) courses per trimester.
A student who obtains three fail grades will not be allowed to continue with the MBA Programme.
The following 11 core units are compulsory in the MBA Programme, and an elective course has to be done from one of the electives listed below or MBA425 can be done which is supervised independent research.
- MBA 431: Quantitative Business Analysis
- MBA 432: Accounting for Decision Making
- MBA 433: Management of Information
- MBA 434: South Pacific Business Environment
- MBA 435: Organisational Behaviour
- MBA 436: Finance
- MBA 437: Marketing
- MBA 438: Operations and Quality Management
- MBA 439: Business Economics
- MBA 440: Strategic Management
- MBA 423: Human Resource Management
Electives: Every student can take one elective course of his/her choice. The elective permits students to pursue their own interests. They may be selected from: electives offered by the MBA Programme, courses offered by other postgraduate programmes at USP, and supervised independent study.
MBA Electives :
- MBA 430: Special Topics in Business Administration
- MBA 421: Entrepreneurship and Innovation
- MBA 422: Financial Institutions and Markets
- MBA 425: Independent Study
- MBA 441: International Marketing
- MBA 442: Services Marketing and Management
- MBA 443: E-Marketing for Managers
Students may also select elective units from the list of postgraduate units offered by the Faculty of Business and Economics (FBE) such as:
- AF 420: Financial Statement Analysis
- AF 433: Advanced Studies in Financial Accounting
- DG 410: Development Theories and Alternatives
- DG 413: Special Topics in Development Studies
- DG 414: Rule of Law
- DG 415: Urbanisation, Development and Urban Planning
- DG 416: Development Internship
- EC 408: International Finance and Development
- EC 412: Economics of Governance and Institutions
- MG 401: Industrial Relations
- MG 404: Human Behavior in the Context of Work and Organisations
- MG 405: Management in the Context of Development
- MG 406: Special Topics in Management: Risk Management
- MG 409: Commercialisation, Corporatisation and Privitisation
- MG 410: Consumer Behavior
- MG 411: Project Management
- MG 412: Supply Chain Management
- LM 401: Urban Land Economics
- LM 402: Property Investment and Development Analysis
- TS 401: Perspectives on International Tourism
MASTER OF BUSINESS ADMINISTRATION
Persons are eligible to be admitted to study for the Master of Business Administration if they have:
a) Passed the Graduate School of Business Management Admissions Test (GSBMAT); and,
b) A Bachelors degree from a recognised tertiary institution and a minimum of three years significant work experience in an executive of professional position involving considerable authority and decision
c) Postgraduate diploma from Graduate School of Business, The University of the South Pacific with a
minimum GPA of 3.0 plus 5 years significant work experience in an executive or professional position
involving considerable authority and decision making; or
d) Have met the mature student admission criteria, which shall be judged on the basis of exceptional
The Master of Business Administration consists of twelve courses. A student who obtains three fail grades will not be allowed to continue with the Master of Business Administration programme.
Courses: MBA423, MBA431, MBA432, MBA433, MBA434, MBA435, MBA436, MBA437,
MBA438, MBA439, MBA440; plus one from: MBA421, MBA422, MBA430, MBA441, MBA442, MBA443; or one from: AF420, AF433, DG410, DG415, DG417, EC408, EC412, MG401, MG404, MG405, MG409, MG410, MG411,
MG412, LM401, LM402, TS401 or supervised independent research conducted within MBA425.
Note: Programmes in the Graduate School of Business operate on the basis of three trimesters per year.