Business Administration - MBA

As an MBA student, you will build on your previous experience and gain practical skills in emerging business topics, Finance, Strategy, Marketing, Accounting, Economics, Human Resources and Leadership among other disciplines. Our core academic programme adapts in tandem with the most up-to-date business and organisational thinking, enabled by research and consultative collaboration between faculty and industry.

MBA teaching is a dynamic mix of theory, implementation, guest speakers, group discussion and analysis, and experiential learning. Case studies, simulations, international study tours and capstone projects are used to build expertise and analytical skills. MBA assessments place a strong emphasis on team work and core skills.

The programme is structured over 3 semesters during which time you will complete 15 core modules, 2 option modules, a major project and the opportunity to take modules in locations across the globe. Optional modules can be taken in autumn, spring and the summer term. The list of options evolves over time based on student feedback and the identification of new areas of interest.

UCD Smurfit School's Leadership and Employability Advancement Programme (LEAP) underpins the MBA Programme and is designed to support you wherever you are on your leadership and career journey.

Subjects taught

Please note that the lsit below is for indicative purposes only as modules are sometimes moved or replaced for academic reasons.

Autumn Trimester

MBA Welcome
Programme Orientation
Communications Skills
Intercultural Development
Effective Teamwork
Time & Task Management
Academic Preparation

Financial Reporting
Corporate Finance
Marketing Management
Leadership & Organisational Behaviour
Competitive Strategy
Business Economics

Spring Trimester

Operations, Innovation & Management
Management Accounting
Doing Business in International Markets
Digital Strategy and Transformation

Option Modules
Digital Marketing & Customer Analytics

Summer Trimester

Strategies for Human Resources
Global & Corporate Strategy
MBA Consulting Project (Capstone)
International Consulting Project

Option Modules
Strategy Development Systems
Strategy Execution

Leadership & Employability Advancement Programme (LEAP)
A holistic and unique approach to your professional development, with a dual focus on building your global leadership competence and future employability in the market.

Extracurricular Activities
MBA Alumni Events • UCD Sports Clubs • MBA Blog • MBA Clubs • Networking Events • Thought Leadership Events • GNAM Network Online Courses • GNAM Immersion Week

Please be advised that the above reflects the 2023/2024 curriculum structure and is subject to change each year. Option modules listed are indicative of what has been delivered in previous years and are also subject to change.

Entry requirements

A university degree*
A minimum of three years’ quality professional experience (excluding summer placements, part-time or temporary work experience) at the time of application.
A valid score on the Graduate Management Admissions Test (GMAT). GMAT Focus is also now accepted.

Full-Time MBA: preferred minimum score of 600 (565 on the GMAT Focus). Please note that we look at applications on a holistic basis, and a high GMAT score does not guarantee admission. The average GMAT for our current MBA class is 646 (approx. 595 on the GMAT Focus). If you have any questions in regards to your application we recommend that you contact the MBA Admissions team.

Executive MBA: GMAT score of 520 (495 on the GMAT Focus) or above required.

GMAC Executive Assessment (EA): EA score of 151 and above is required for the FT MBA. A score of 149 and above is required for EMBA programme.
More information on the EA available here.
For both the MBA full-time and EMBA, apart from meeting the minimum overall GMAT/EA score, candidates must also do reasonably well in the quantitative component of this test.

Alternatively to the above, candidates for both the full-time and EMBA can submit a valid GRE Test Score. Indicative equivalencies can be calculated here.

NB: Please note that scholarship competitions may require earlier submission of a GMAT score, which may vary from those noted above. View our Scholarships page for more details.

English Language Requirements: All applicants are required to demonstrate a high level of competence in English language. If English is not your first language you must present with the minimum standard in a recognised English language test, as outlined below. The exception to this rule is if you have completed your primary degree or an entire third level qualification through English, in a majority English speaking country.**
An average IELTS score of 7.0 over all components and a minimum of 6.5 in each band on the Academic Version.
A minimum score of 100 is required in the Internet based TOEFL (iTB) with minimum score 24 in Writing, and minimum score 20 in Reading, Listening and Speaking components.
For all proficiency tests the results must normally have been issued within two years prior to the start of your programme.
UCD has approved the use of the Duolingo Test of English (DET) for the 2023/24 intake. A DET score of 130 will be accepted with at least 110 in each subscore.
Through our rigorous selection process we endeavour to manage expectations so that the candidate’s aspirations for the programme and career objectives are aligned with what the programme can deliver.

*If you do not hold a university degree equivalent to NFQ Level 8 please contact Admissions for further advice on the non-standard admissions process.

**List of majority English speaking countries:
Australia, New Zealand, USA, Canada, UK, Ireland, Antigua and Barbuda, The Bahamas, Barbados, Dominica, Grenada, Jamaica, St Kitts and Nevis, St Lucia, St Vincent and the Grenadines, Trinidad and Tobago, Belize, Guyana.

Application dates

Candidates are required to Apply Online via the UCD applications system. The application fee is €60.

Candidates are required to submit an online application form which asks for basic details and short questions on why you are applying for our MBA.

The following supporting documentation should be uploaded to your online application account:

Curriculum Vitae
GMAT/EA official score report or confirmation of scheduled GMAT test date (if available)
English language official test report or confirmation of scheduled test date (if applicable)
Copies of official final transcripts of degrees and /or professional qualifications (degree certificates are not normally required but may be requested)
Two completed Recommendation Forms from current or former employers or clients if you are self-employed. For authenticity these must be signed by hand and scanned prior to submission. Please scan and upload these along with your application.

Assessment Info

Assessment for the MBA is based on a combined grade for group assignments and presentations, individual projects, class participation and written examinations. Graduates are given a GPA and level result.


1 year full-time.


Full-time MBA tuition fees can be paid in three instalments: September, January and May.

Executive MBA Tuition Fee: €15,950* per year (academic year 2019/2020)

EMBA participants pay fees on an annual (per academic year) basis, with fees split into three instalments per year. The Year 2 fees can also be paid in three instalments for that year. So, over the two years, the full fees can be paid and split into six spread out instalments.

MBA candidates must pay a non-refundable deposit of €1,000 at the time of acceptance, to secure a place on the programme. This deposit will be deducted from Semester 1 tuition fees. You can find further information on payment methods, schedules and fee payment deadlines online at

Important Note: Tuition fees and other charges are subject to change each year.

Enrolment dates

Starting: Late August 2024

Post Course Info

Graduates of the Smurfit MBA are highly sought after to take up roles across all types of organisations. They are hired into a variety of commercial roles in Ireland and abroad.

Over the past few years, our Full Time MBA class have secured roles in a large number of organisations, including: McKinsey, Google, Kellogg’s, EY, Grant Thornton, PwC, Amazon, Hubspot, Facebook, LinkedIn, Salesforce, Mainstream Renewable Power, KPMG, Novartis, Accenture, Roche, CRH and Glanbia.

More details
  • Qualification letters


  • Qualifications

    Degree - Masters (Level 9 NFQ)

  • Attendance type

    Full time,Daytime

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    Course provider