Flexible MBA: how to tailor your study to your schedule and goals
Published 9 Feb, 2024 · 7-minute read
One of the biggest challenges to starting a Master of Business Administration is finding a flexible MBA that can align and adapt with your schedule and priorities. Whether you’re balancing study with a busy career or responsibilities at home (or both!), the UQ MBA is designed to flex with you.
What makes the UQ MBA one of the most flexible MBA programs?
True flexibility means choosing how to fit study in with your existing commitments. It’s also about having the freedom to easily modify your timetable along the way.
With the UQ MBA, you don't have to choose between accelerating your career or focusing on other life priorities. You can tailor our flexible MBA to suit your lifestyle and goals in 3 ways:
1. Different class times and lengths
Create your own balance of AM and PM classes. Attend weekend or week-long intensives when your schedule allows.
2. Study online or in person
Our blended learning mode gives you the flexibility to choose whether you study in person at 88 Creek Street in our conveniently located Brisbane CBD location or online via our interactive, live lectures. Or, study a mixture of both modes. Dial your collaboration time up or down, depending on your needs.
3. Choose how long it takes to finish
Choose how long it takes to complete your MBA with one of the 3 options below.
3 ways to structure your UQ MBA
1. Accelerated program
Complete the MBA program in 1 year by studying full time in intensive blocks between January and November.
Please note: International students will need to complete the MBA using this option.
2. Streamlined program
Complete the MBA program over 24 months alongside your work commitments by studying during morning, evening or weekend classes as well as 1-week intensive options.
3. Customised flexibility program
Study at your own pace on weekdays, weeknights, weekends or an array of short intensive options. You’ll have up to 10 years to fully complete the program if needed.
How 4 students made our flexible MBA work for them
Alex completed the MBA in 1 year while working part time
Dr Alex Chaudhuri is an infectious diseases expert who juggled full-time study with his high-pressure job to complete the MBA in 1 year.
"It was a very difficult year, but it taught me how to manage stress, and I grew from the challenge," says Alex.
"I had to be very organised and carve out protected time for my near and dear because I didn’t want to neglect that aspect of my life. I also found it important to be open about what that year was going to mean for my relationships and work life.
"Thankfully, I had the support of my wife and my boss, who had to trust I wouldn’t neglect my work and that I’d be available to hash out any issues if they arose."
"Although I didn’t choose to take up the flexible course options, knowing I could if I needed to was very helpful and made all the difference to me."
Camilla made the most of the MBA's flexible options to cope with life’s curveballs
When Camilla Roberts started the MBA, she was working a full-time, busy corporate job where she was often travelling.
Then, she was made redundant.
Realising she had to create her own work, Camilla started her own consulting firm while looking for another full-time job. At the same time, she had a non-executive director position on a not-for-profit board, was planning to have children, and was also juggling other general life commitments while studying.
"I studied full time for a while, then I worked full time and attended morning and evening classes," says Camilla.
"I also did some intensive classes during annual leave or with professional development leave from my employer."
"I took advantage of all the flexible class options available in the UQ MBA."
Helen became a mum of 2 while studying and maintaining a successful career
Helen Barker used the program’s flexibility to her benefit to manage her parenting and work responsibilities while studying.
"I did half of my MBA before kids, the other half of the program after having kids," she says.
"I found the UQ MBA very flexible. There were lots of different study options, which meant I could finish it when I wanted to, and I didn’t have to wait to do subjects.
"The staff and other students were very accommodating."
"Although the time I had to spend on my studies after having kids was much more limited, it made me appreciate everything I learned that much more."
Matthew became a business owner, not-for-profit board member and dad
Matthew Jones had to juggle full-time work, cultural obligations and being a parent to a young family while he was studying the MBA. He also served as a non-executive director on 2 not-for-profit boards and completed his studies over 3 years.
"One of the things that helped me juggle my competing priorities was the fact that the course delivery could vary," says Matthew.
"I took a couple of subjects on weeknights if I thought I needed a greater amount of time to learn.
"Conversely, I found the weekend intensives over 6 weeks to be quite useful for me, and I also did a number of week-and-a-half intensive courses."
"The flexibility of the program allows you to fit the right subject into your schedule for where you are and where your career is at the time."
Need more examples of how UQ’s flexible MBA can be tailored to your schedule and adjusted as your priorities change? Here are 2 hypothetical examples of different MBA journeys to give you a feel for what your week could look like, depending on whether you study full time or part time and how you can flex your program in response to other priorities.
Full-time student example timetable: Tim
After receiving a redundancy, Tim wanted to make the most of his time while looking for a new role by studying an MBA.
He enrolled in UQ’s accelerated full-time program and studied 4 courses each semester in his first year. Taking advantage of UQ’s summer semester, Tim completed an additional course during December and January. During this time, Tim was recruited into an exciting new role.
To fit study in around his new job, Tim swapped to part-time study during his second year, enrolling in 2 courses in Semester 1 and 1 course in Semester 2. Following this pattern, Tim was eligible to graduate at the end of his second year of study. Towards the end of his second year of study, Tim received a promotion by successfully leveraging the fact that he will soon graduate from the UQ MBA program.
Here’s an example of what a week for Tim might look like at the beginning of his degree, when he was studying full time. Tim is:
married with 2 children and responsible for dropping off the kids to school Monday, Wednesday and Friday on his way to class
enrolled in Marketing and Management, which has classes 3 times a week all day
able to designate time on Thursday to study and work on assignments
free on the weekend to play sport, go grocery shopping and spend quality time with his family.
It’s important to note that Tim’s weekly schedule would change throughout each semester depending on when his courses are offered.
Part-time student example timetable: Maya
After being accepted into the UQ MBA, Maya opted for the part-time course load and enrolled in 2 courses for her first semester. She thought this would be a good way to trial balancing study with her full-time job.
Maya was pleasantly surprised to find a good selection of courses offered at night and on weekends, meaning class time wouldn’t cut into her work time. She also took advantage of UQ’s summer semester, completing one course during this time. Over the Christmas break, Maya found out she was pregnant with her first child.
She continued to study 2 courses per semester until going on maternity leave from work. At that point, Maya enrolled in 1 course and then, after having her child, took a short break from her studies.
Unsure how she’d go balancing being a new mum with work and study, Maya only enrolled in 1 course each semester after returning to work from maternity leave. She continued this pattern until she was approved to graduate at the end of her fourth year of study.
Here’s an example of what a week for Maya might look like at the beginning of her degree, when she is working full time and studying part time. Maya is:
working during the day and attends a night class between 5.30pm–8.30pm
able to easily make it to class on time after work because she works in the city, where her classes are
attending 1 all-day weekend class every Saturday
free to make the most of her Sundays by hanging out with her partner and friends.
How could UQ's flexible MBA work for you?
With flexible study options to suit everyone’s busy schedule and career goals, the flexibility of our program means there’s an MBA timetable to suit you.
Discuss how the UQ MBA can fit into your life with our friendly administration experts.