The A-Z of Business Schools; City University Business School

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Age: 32

History: Started out as management studies in City University. Moved to the Barbican in 1981. Began full-time MBA in 1979.

Address: The Barbican: three floors of classrooms and offices a covered corridor away from the arts complex. In the heart of the City of London, it's the only British business school in the world's top financial centre.

Ambience: The semi-circular building has recently been refurbished, so it's comfy. Every lecture hall and office comes with a balcony. Cafeteria open all day and late into the evening. Recently redesigned Cyril Kleinworth library contains a suite of PC workstations. You get sweeping panoramic views of the City plus access to films, plays and music at the Barbican and the sports facilities at City University.

Vital statistics: Emphasises practice over theory. Aims to produce competent, hands-on managers through full- or part-time MBAs with a specialist slant. You can choose to specialise in finance, human resources, IT, international business and export, technology or marketing. Intake to full-time MBA is 150 a year; to part-time 120. Part-time MBA geared to City slickers.

Added value: All students undertake a business project to learn how to apply what they've learnt and to develop as managers - usually in a company of their choice. Recent projects included asset-backed securitisation in India, corporate venturing in the UK and the equity market in Turkey. A leader in the use of the electronic classroom, it was the first British business school to introduce Internet training as compulsory for MBAs, in 1989.

Easy to get into? Minimum requirement is a degree and three years' good career experience.

Association of MBAs accreditation: Yes

Glittering alumni: Stelios Haji-Ioannou, chairman of easyJet; Andrew Pople, managing director of Abbey National; Michael Cassidy, chairman of general purposes committee, City Corporation, and would-be mayor of London.

Research: Achieved a grade 4 (out of a maximum of 5) in the 1996 research assessment exercise.

Teaching: Rated excellent by the higher education funding council quality people.

Placements with firms: Full-time students have a three-month internship as part of the MBA programme. Dedicated placement service within the school.

International connections: Very strong. Links with the Alliance of Management Schools in European Capitals (AMSEC) and to EM Lyon, one of the top French business schools, and the University of Illinois with which it has undergraduate exchanges. Graduates can apply to spend a term at a number of big-noise European business schools. Staff come from all over the world e.g. Korea, Japan and Algeria. MBA students from 47 countries.

Student profile: The average age of students is 30 and women make up 25 per cent of student numbers.

Cost: pounds 13,000 a year for full-time MBA; part-time pounds 9,000 a year.

What do you get for your money? City-related remuneration packages (big salaries).

Who's the boss? Economic historian and university bureaucrat Leslie Hannah, formerly No 2 at the LSE under John Ashworth and founder member of consultancy group, London Economics. Arrived at City University with a staggering number of books. New bookshelves had to be built to accommodate them.

Next week: Cranfield.