Lancaster University Management School

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The Independent Online

Age: 47

History: Founded as part of Lancaster University, which contained the first marketing and operational research departments of any UK university, it subsequently grew to become one of the UK's largest and highest-ranked management schools.

Address: The site has recently been transformed by £220m of investment in buildings and facilities, including the £10m Lancaster Leadership Centre.

Ambience: A modern school offering provision for undergraduate, postgraduate, executive and doctorate study, with views of Morecambe Bay and the Lake District. Students, staff, clients and guests mingle together in the Hub café area, with a purpose-built four-star hotel and executive training centre across the road.

Vital statistics: In the past five years, the school has doubled its faculty and now has one of the largest doctoral programmes in the UK. The full-time, one-year MBA is highly selective, with a strong emphasis on "action learning" – students undertake three consulting projects. The part-time executive MBA runs for two years.

Added value: The school prides itself on a combination of expert, research-inspired teaching and a vibrant student-centred culture. Research is second to none. Visiting professors include Henry Mintzberg, McGill University; Keith Grint, Cranfield University; Keith Blois, Templeton College, Oxford; Hamish McRae, associate editor, The Independent.

Easy to get into? Most undergraduate programmes require ABB at A-level, and specialist Masters require a 2.1 degree or equivalent. MBA competition is fierce, with nine applications for every place.

Glittering alumni: Antony Burgmans, non-executive chairman, Unilever, Netherlands; Alan Murray, former CEO, Hanson Plc, UK; Nahed Taher, CEO, Gulf One Investment Bank, Bahrain.

International connections: Most undergraduate degrees include an optional year abroad. On the MBA, you can opt for one of 12 exchange programmes or go abroad to do your project. The school also pioneered the European credit transfer system in management.

Student profile: The male-to-female ratio is 70:30 on the full-time MBA, and the average age is 30 (37 part-time). Classes typically have students from more than 20 countries.

Cost: Full-time and executive MBA fees are £25,000. Many scholarships are available.

Return on investment: Substantial CV enhancement through the action-orientated MBA.

Who's the boss? Professor Sue Cox, a safety and risk management expert.

Prospectus: +44 (0)1524 510 752;