- Our Doctorate in Business Administration is a research-based qualification, which is aimed at advancing your professional practice in management alongside developing your research credentials
- The programme structure and delivery is flexible and specific to you and your professional needs
- The DBA supports you to better integrate evidence into practice and become a critical and reflective practitioner
- The taught element of the course supports peer learning and networking at a doctoral level of study
- The DBA provides you with the highest possible academic qualification with a strong relevance to management practice, and awards the title of Doctor.
Derby Management School brochure
The programme provides significant opportunity for the development of professional knowledge through applied research.
The DBA offers an annual research conference to all cohorts, which provides a unique opportunity for students and academics (from a range of business topics) to showcase their research. A cohort Leadership Coach supports students in their senior leadership development.
The Doctorate of Business Administration:
- Offers a practice-based route to a doctoral qualification, developing skills to undertake applied research;
- Supports students to generate an advanced and critical understanding of their chosen study area, demonstrated through an original contribution to professional knowledge in the organisational context;
- Develops students to synthesise ideas and concepts, using relevant theoretical frameworks to solve problems innovatively and drive change within their professional domain;
- Benefits organisations and employers with students developing as change agents;
- Supports and prepares students for enhanced career opportunities.
By studying the Doctorate of Business Administration students will achieve:
- A doctoral level award which allows the title of Doctor to be used* (*some countries accept doctoral awards in different ways);
- A doctorate that is orientated toward professionals, managers, executives, and practitioners.
- Professional development and greater career prospects;
- The opportunity to make an organisational impact through their applied research;
- An ability to engage with advanced critical analysis;
- Greater confidence and potential for publication;
- A qualification from the University of Derby, the birthplace of the industrial revolution, innovation and home to manufacturing and engineering excellence.
Our Business and Management research is internationally recognised through the Research Excellence Framework (2014), and we possess expertise and research excellence in areas such as marketing, low carbon and the green economy, supply chain management and logistics, and economics. We can also support interdisciplinary projects with our law and criminology colleagues.
The programme comprises of four core modules, one negotiated module in the taught stage (year 2 of the programme), and one substantial project module in the ‘Independent Research’ stage. An optional sixth module is available at the end of year two for students wishing to exit with an MSc Business and Management Research.
The Theory for Practice Stage (years 1 and 2) begins to prepare the learner for the greater learning autonomy expected in the Independent Study stage of the programme. The stage also encourages argument, critical evaluation, analysis and reflection. Assessment outputs at the Theory for Practice stage include preparation towards a research progress review at the end of the year 2 of the programme, which needs to be successfully passed for a student to be transferred onto Independent Research stage of the DBA programme. The programme structure is as follows:
- Introduction to research (20 credits)
- Designing research projects (40 credits)
- Developing the professional self (20 credits)
- Negotiated module (20 credits)
- Communicating your research (20 credits)
Practitioner project (420 credits) – PhD thesis of 50,000-60,000 words
Teaching and Learning
Doctoral level study requires a great deal of independent study and you should be prepared for around 20 hours of independent study per week.
Scheduled taught sessions occur in blocks throughout the first two years of the programme. All students can access online resources through the virtual learning environment (Blackboard/Course Resources). All students can access tutorials via online, phone or face-to-face options.
Students will engage through seminars, practical activity, supervision, tutorials, guided independent study and work-based learning. One-to-one tutorials are arranged between the learner and tutoring/supervision team (typically 10-15 hours per year).
Assessments have been designed to be broad, wide-ranging, flexible and innovative, facilitating professional learning and allowing students to produce work relevant to their own specialism. Assessment will review the students’ ability to apply and evaluate skills, apply theory, critical reasoning and problem solving, use self-reflection and demonstrate evidence-based practice. Academic writing and language skills will also be taken into account. Students must pass all the taught stage modules (year 1 and 2) in order to be transferred onto the independent research stage.
Students on the independent research stage are required to undertake progress reports which act as progression milestones. The final assessment for a doctoral award is through examination of the major practitioner project and a viva voce. Support is available through mock viva voice examinations.
Throughout the programme, tutors and supervisors will also give formative feedback; this serves to provide on-going support and guidance to students. Formal records of supervision meetings will be held and provide additional feedback to students.
Who you will meet
Dr Polina Baranova
The programme seeks to admit highly capable individuals able to demonstrate motivation, interest and aptitude for doctoral level study with interests in business and management research. Both home and international applications are encouraged.
- Applicants should have a masters degree in a relevant field. A good first degree may be considered instead of a masters
- Applicants should have at least three years professional experience
- Where English is not the first language, applicants may need to provide the minimum English qualification IELTS 6.5 (with no less than 5.5 in each component). IELTS may not be needed where a degree has been obtained in the UK or another English speaking countries. English speaking professional settings may be considered
- All applicants must be interviewed
- Decisions about entry to the programme are made on the basis of application, prior education attainment, interview, professional experience and research proposal
Where English is not the first language:
- Applicants need to provide the minimum English qualification IELTS level 6.5 (minimum 5.5 in each component area). All tutorials, supervision and assessment are in English. Other substantial evidence of English Proficiency may be taken into account
- Applicants may be required to undertake a pre-sessional English course at additional cost to ensure that they have a standard of English appropriate to this level of study. If applicants do not pass this course they will not be permitted to study on this programme
Potential applicants are strongly advised to discuss the programme and alternative doctoral study options with the Programme Leader prior to applying to ensure a best fit in terms of personal, professional and career aspirations.
2019/20 Fees (August 2019 - July 2020)
- Year 1: £7,800
- Year 2: £7,800
- Year 3: £5,700
- Year 4: £5,700
Please note that all fees may be subject to annual increase.
Students undertake doctoral research for many reasons and many see benefits in terms of promotions in their professional area.
Students are likely to be in full-time employment and considering the research within their own work context; as such the learner links their employer with the University.
As the highest academic qualification that can be studied there is no further academic scheme of study for students to progress to.
Students are encouraged to maintain links with the University beyond their programme, possibly to contribute to joint research projects, associate lecturing, or publication with their former supervision team.
If you need any more information from us, eg on courses, accommodation, applying, car parking, fees or funding, please contact us and we will do everything we can to help you.Contact us
† Additional information about your studies
Download programme specification
Like most universities, we operate extended teaching hours at the University of Derby, so contact time with your lecturers and tutors could be anytime between 9am and 9pm. Your timetable will usually be available on the website 24 hours after enrolment on to your course.
Please note: Our courses are refreshed and updated on a regular basis. If you are thinking about transferring onto this course (into the second year for example), you should contact the programme leader for the relevant course information as modules may vary from those shown on this page.