The introduction of an Executive Master of Public Administration (EMPA), program will provide students with the opportunity, skills and knowledge to coordinate and implement coherent policy alternatives, in order to implement successful cost-effective programs. The ‘executive’ element of the proposed EMPA program is primarily designed to educate working executives, managers, and other business leaders in a cohesive learning environment that is designed to fit the variety of different students’ schedules. The EMPA program requires students to attend blocks of lectures, and then complete a large portion of the work on their own time. Because module schedules are preset at the beginning of the program, the EMPA will not seek to use elective modules in its initial cohorts, however, as the market evolves this may be reconsidered.
The Executive MPA is taught within a truly global context and requires students to complete modules in a step-lock method, synchronously attending modules with the same classmates for the duration of the program.
The delivery of the EMPA, in Arabic supports the UAE government mission to emphasize the importance of the Arabic language. The ability to deliver the EMPA in Arabic brings a competitive advantage to MBRSG, and fills a significant gap in the service delivery of such bespoke higher education provision. The Executive MPA has been designed to meet the needs of currently employed, high-achieving professionals and who have demonstrated leadership potential from the public sector.
The Executive Master of Public Administration (EMPA), is specifically tailored to meet the professional challenges and time constraints of mid-career professionals in the public, private and nonprofit sectors. The program consists of block teaching direct contact sessions held on (extended) weekends every four to six weeks, as well as directed independent learning (DIL) that takes place between weekend sessions. The Executive MPA program tackles challenges of governance and management in a unique forum for exchange, learning, and professional development. The flexible program can be completed full-time in one academic year or over a period of two academic years while working.
Teaching and Learning
MBRSG believes that active learning and full student engagement is the most successful pedagogical approach. The learning, teaching and assessment approaches used throughout the program will encourage collaborative engagement among students. MBRSG aims to provide students with prompt feedback on their learning as well as reflective opportunities through which they can enhance their learning. Students will be actively involved in a range of learning, teaching and assessment approaches as part of the program. Interactive lectures, guest lectures, seminars, tutorials, group work, class discussions, directed independent learning, online learning resources via the Virtual Learning Environment (Blackboard), self- access and field trips are some of the learning activities that will add value to the student experience in the EMPA. Such active approaches are intentionally student-centered, foster involvement and engagement in all aspects of teaching and learning. The EMPA program will require active participation in learning activities and engagement with fellow students both individually and collaboratively.
In class learning will be supported by technology. Increasingly, lecturers will be using existing and emerging learning technologies to engage students in Virtual Learning activities. This will be facilitated using a variety of media and online tools such as podcasts, wikis, etc. At MBRSG the Virtual Learning Environment (VLE) is facilitated through Blackboard which will allow students flexible access to a diverse range of online resources, quizzes, discussion forums, learning materials and collaborative tools with which you can interact and learn with your peers.
The delivery of each module is designed to allow students to actively engage with the material and critically reflect on the delivered content. Modules are delivered over staggered weekends, which allow time for reflection between delivery sessions. Each day comprises of a minimum of six hours direct contact. Following the intensive teaching sessions, the students are assigned Directed Independent Learning (DIL) tasks which will reinforce and extend the taught content. Students are also expected to include self -access study time for critical analysis and reflection on content, before resuming for a final two-day period. For the duration of the program students will be working on assignments that measures their applied and analytical skills.
Students will receive detailed module handbooks each year with information on teaching and learning strategies, assessment methods and reading materials. The academic faculty, the Library, the IT Office and the Student Affairs teams will provide any required support to students studying at MBRSG.
Program Objectives and Outcomes
Students successfully completing the Executive Master of Public Administration (EMPA), program will be able to:
- Critically analyse and evaluate the ethical and cultural dimensions of policy making and management in the public sector
- Determine and evaluate organizational and management theory, process, structure and systems in the public sector.
- Synthesize the purposes, design, functions, and character of government organizations, market, and civil society and the interactions among them
- Utilise advanced problem solving skills to utilise knowledge from the external and domestic factors and drivers that determine the policy space
- Appraise and assess the role of global political and economic institutions and events in driving local outcomes
- Decide on effective leadership and teamwork skills to solve complex/advanced public organizational problems and communicate policy decisions.
The six (6) Executive Master of Public Administration (EMPA) , core modules have each been designed to extend the students’ knowledge of the variety of public administration functions, processes and strategies, in a context that will engage new ideas and concepts. The addition of an elective module ‘Global Governance’ (EMPA 1507) will enable Executive MPA students to complete their studies entirely within the UAE or to participate in an enhanced international context.
Students wishing to study EMPA 1507 are able to do so as an alternative to EMPA 1508. The Executive MPA modules will challenge existing practices, and the student’s personal management style. The EMPA proposes to enhance strategic thinking skills and the capacity to reflect critically on what works, and why.
Within the Executive MPA, students will experience fresh perspectives from their fellow students, faculty member and guest lecturers, as well as gaining an international perspective on public sector issues. The debate and discussion, both in the classroom and in subsequent online debate, will provide a powerful test-bed for ideas and potentially also a valuable source of professional advice. The Executive MPA has synergies with both the UAE Vision 2021, and the Dubai Strategic Plan 2021 where priority areas are encouraged to be engaged in Government Excellence.
- A minimum equivalent cumulative grade point average of 3.00 on a 4.0 scale for full admission or 2.50 (on a 4.0 Scale) for Conditional Admission. or its established equivalent, in the applicant’s recognised Bachelor’s degree program.
- English requirment: a minimum EmSAT score of 950, a minimum TOEFL score of 450 on the Paper-Based, or 133 on the Computer-Based, or 45 on the Internet-Based test, or its equivalent in a standardized English language test, such as 4.5 IELTS or another standardized, internationally recognized test approved by the Ministry of Education.
- Arabic requirment: EmSAT score of 1250.
- A letter “to whom it may concern” which states that the applicant holds a senior managerial position.
- An applicant who meets the above requirements should have a minimum of six (6) years of documented professional managerial work experience (gained prior to admission).
Prior to enrolling in the Executive Master of Public Administration program students must demonstrate proficiency in basic statistics and research methods. These requirements can be met by passing an undergraduate university level subject in statistics and/or research methods. Students who have not demonstrated previous proficiency in basic statistics and research methods will be required to take the Foundation Course for Research Methods in Public Policy during their first semester of academic study. Furthermore, these students will be limited to enrolling and studying one Core Module, in addition to the Foundation Course for Research Methods in Public Policy, in their first academic semester as part of their Executive Master of Public Administration program of study.
Orientation and Online Post Graduate Academic Skills Course
The aim of the MBRSG Orientation Session is to introduce students to the range of services that are available to postgraduate students, as well as to provide them with essential information about registration and enrollment. It is also an opportunity for students to get acquainted with each other. During these sessions, faculty members will guide you through essential knowledge and skills to enhance your progression through the programs.
We propose that induction will answer many of the questions that students may have about what being a postgraduate student at MBRSG. The Orientation Session will be delivered the weekend prior to the commencement of the first semester of study. All new postgraduate students are required to attend.
In support of students at the commencement of their graduate studies or at what may be a return to an academic environment after a period away from higher education, MBRSG requires that all new students admitted to a graduate program attend the Orientation Session.
There are a number of activities built into the first year of your experience at MBRSG to enable you to adjust to the learning environment and attain the desired level of progression. You will also be invited to complete the online Post Graduate Academic Skills Course which is designed to make you aware of the academic skills required to succeed at the Post Graduate Level. You will learn about vital academic skills such as critical thinking, academic reading strategies and writing for academic purposes, to help you in your study at MBRSG. This should be completed prior to registering on your core modules in the first semester of your learning journey.
Once you have started studying you will have access to a number of academic enrichment resources via Blackboard to support your development of transferable academic skills throughout the duration of your program.
The dates for the Orientation Session dates to be held during the 2023/2024 Academic year are as follows:
- Fall Semester 2023
- Saturday 19th August 2023
- Spring Semester 2024
- Saturday 27th January 2024 (TBC)
An Executive Master of Public Administration (EMPA) program student may enroll in up to a maximum of three (3) Modules, which is the equivalent of sixty (60) CATS credits, per semester, with the approval of the Director of Academic Affairs. It is envisaged that most graduate students will enroll in two (2) Modules, or the equivalent of forty (40) CATS Credits per semester. The Director of Academic Affairs may approve a student’s request to enroll in a third Module, in an academic semester, subject to School Timetabling constraints, and considering whether the student has achieved a minimum cumulative GPA of 3.50 (or equivalent) in their undergraduate studies and/or a minimum an overall average grade of 70% (Pass with Distinction) in their current EMPA studies. Students who are working full-time are unlikely to be given approval to study a full-time load.
Progression and Academic Standing
In accordance with the MBRSG Student Academic Progression Policy, students studying in the Executive Master’s in Public Administration (EMPA) program must maintain a ‘Good Academic Standing’ to progress through their program of study in order to successfully meet the graduation completion requirements. Student’s must maintain an overall average grade of Pass with Merit (B) under the European Credit Accumulation Transfer Scheme (CATS) Credits system, failure to do so will adversely impact a student’s progression and may lead to a period of Academic Probation or ultimately dismissal from the program should academic performance fail to improve.
Careers and Employability
The transformational nature of the Executive MPA equips graduates with transferable skills and knowledge which will enhance their career prospects and open up options in the area of public policy. MBRSG Executive MPA alumni will occupy positions in the public and private sectors, international organizations and think tanks around the world.