There are various programs and courses of MBA in the Czech Republic and, of course, for students quality is one of the key attributes for decision making. There is however one new ‘game-changer’ on the Czech market of business education; we asked Miroslav Svoboda, Vice President for Faculty and Study Affairs at Anglo-American University (AAU), Prague, what exactly was going on?
MBA (Master of Business Administration) is newly recognized as being at the same level as Master's degree in the Czech Republic. Was it a general decision of the Ministry of Education (MŠMT) or is it related to one specific program only?
In May this year, MŠMT gave the first and only authorization to implement the MBA program to Chapman University of California, which, in Prague, offers the program in cooperation with the Anglo-American University. It is the first time in history that MŠMT has granted an MBA program the same level of recognition as a Master’s degree.
What are the practical consequences and effects of this decision?
Participants of this MBA program will newly receive the full status of a student with all its advantages and opportunities. The graduates will meet the qualification requirements such as the appropriate level of education (Master's degree, „Mgr.“) and after validation of their diploma, they will also be able to apply for a doctorate.
How difficult was it to go through the process and obtain the recognition?
The entire permission process was extremely demanding. It took ten months and required support from state authorities in the US. Among other challenges, it cost 100,000 CZK in fees to administrate the application at the ministry and huge efforts from our staff, faculty and partners in California.
It is obvious that the decision will potentially influence the entire local market. What do you expect to change?
There is a rooted awareness in Czechia that MBA is not a regular Master's program. Therefore this is a breakthrough decision, which puts quality MBA programs at the level of other university programs as is customary in the US, for example, where our program was initially accredited. All serious players in the MBA field here will have to decide how to proceed further. Whether they want to invest and profile their program as a university level of education, though focused practically on business, or whether they want to provide the public with specialised business courses.
How will AAU itself be affected?
MBA is just one of our accredited programs. We offer also law, international relations, humanities and journalism. We are used to providing education in small, interactive classes, based on American teaching standards, so the change will mainly impact the way students can benefit from the official “student” status and the degree, now perceived as Master’s by Czech authorities. It will also provide interesting prospects, both working and academic, to foreign students. This point is extremely important for us as AAU has the highest share of foreign students among domestic universities (80%) with a diverse spectre of 70 nationalities.
Publication date: June 07, 2018