International Business MSc (Brunel Business School)
Brunel Business School won the Times Higher Education Awards Business School of the Year 2013
About the course
The MSc International Business is designed for students seeking to operate within an international management or international business setting, as well as a myriad of organisations and disciplines where an understanding of international business is an asset. The programme aims to enable students to develop a sound understanding of international business contexts and the ability to make integrative links across various disciplines. Some aspects of the course will focus on emerging markets.
Graduates will have the opportunity to gain an understanding of the impact of contextual factors on organisations - within the context of internationalisation:
- the management of resources and operations
- the financing of business enterprise
- the management and development of people
- the use and the limitations of a range of research methods and on the development of appropriate business policies and strategies.
The programme offers training in research methods with particular application to the empirical study of international management situations, issues and process.
- The programme will enable you to further develop transferable skills suitable for engaging with the challenges of employment/self-employment within the global economy.
- You will gain comprehensive understanding of the processes of globalisation in the 21st century and their implications for the business person.
- You will develop comprehensive knowledge and skills for successful careers in multinational corporations, non-governmental organisations, multilateral international organisations, international laws, and academic institutions.
Download the full course programme
The MSc consists of both compulsory and optional modules, a typical selection can be found below. Modules can vary from year to year, but these offer a good idea of what we teach.
Global Business and Investments: The module aims to provide students with a comprehensive understanding of how globalisation has led to the intensification of international business activity pursued by the business enterprise in a changing global business environment.
International Trade: The module aims to provide students with a comprehensive understanding of the importance of overseas trade to a country’s economy, focussing on the most commonly used barriers to trade, regional trading arrangements and the case for and against the concept of free (unrestricted) trade.
International Business Strategy: The aim of this module is to help students understand strategies and structures that multinational firms adopt and how they perform their key business operations to compete and succeed in the international business environment.
Students will develop:
- a comprehensive understanding of the strategy of international business
- understanding of the organisational architecture that international businesses use to manage and direct their global operations
- understanding of issues related to foreign expansion
- understanding of roles of specific business functions in an international business
International Management: The module has six main aims. These are to:
- examine the important trends impacting international business and the major developing players in the international economy
- explore the issues and challenges of managing in an international environment and with reference to particular countries and regions understand the nature and forms of interaction between an international organisation, managerial decisions and the external environment, especially the effects of globalisation upon MNCs in both developed and developing countries
- facilitate understanding of the theories and concepts of international management and to use them to diagnose and solve managerial problems
- equip students with the analytical tools, techniques and models of negotiations, communication, and conflict resolution in international contexts
- explore the theories and concepts relating to the management of human resources in international context.
Organisational Behaviour: This module explores the main theories and key functions of leadership and management and their application. Students will be able to critique these as well as appreciate the contemporary issues facing leaders and managers. They will also be able to critically evaluate characteristics of effective management and how this differentiates from leadership. They will discuss and assess relative strengths and limitations of key approaches to developing leaders and managers in organisations.
Understanding Business and Management Research: The module is predicated on the dominant role of both quantitative and qualitative methods in management research. It is based on the need to enable the understanding of research reports and use this information to improve the quality of work, decision-making, and the understanding of complex management problems. The latter will be instrumental in applying existing management theory and research to practical management problems as action researchers.
The specific aims of the module are:
- to provide a balanced view of social science and business research methods enabling a critical understanding of research information
- to acquire theoretical and practical knowledge for business management by covering issues and debates in management research as reflected in the literature.
- to provide knowledge of relevant research methods and techniques for master'ss level project work.
Dissertation: A research-based dissertation is an integral and particularly important element of the programme. Students are required to base their dissertation on empirical research into a management problem or issue of their choice (subject to approval).
Dissertations are supervised by full-time members of the academic staff of the school who have a wide range of research interests and expertise. The dissertation must be submitted by the end of the academic year during which a student completes all of the taught modules of the course.
International Marketing: The module addresses critical understanding and ability in assessing the effectiveness of international marketing theory and practice. It targets principles and issues that drive markets world-wide. Students will develop insight and investigative ability concerning issues facing a business that needs to research markets and develop and implement market strategies, techniques and methods across a range of international sectors.
International and Comparative HRM: The HRM practitioner is in a position to make a substantial contribution to helping the organisation and its managers understand and apply the knowledge and skills needed for success in an international context. This module examines human resources strategy and practices for organisations operating across national boundaries, including the European Union (EU) and its member states, the USA, Japan and South East Asia.
Global Diversity Management: This module aims to provide an insight into Global Diversity Management by examining how organizations plan, coordinate and implement a set of management strategies, policies and initiatives. These include training and development activities that seek to accommodate diverse sets of social and individual backgrounds, interests, beliefs, values and ways of work in organizations with international, multinational, global and transnational workforces and operations.
International Business Ethics and Corporate Governance: This module focuses on business ethics, sustainability and corporate governance in the international context. Both areas will be addressed from the perspective of the dual ‘business’ models of the shareholder and the stakeholder approaches. Further the broader societal impacts of business activities will be considered in-depth. The full range of businesses will be considered – from large corporations through to SMEs. Empirical studies will be used to apply the theoretical resources of moral philosophy, CSR, sustainability and corporate governance.
Knowledge Management, Social Networks and Innovation: This module explores the intersection between knowledge, social network technologies and innovation. It examines how organisations create, utilise and communicate knowledge in the global knowledge-based economy and the wider social and economic factors affecting knowledge transfer. The module identifies the exploitation of Web 2.0 which enables social engagement and processes for business development.
Read more about the structure of postgraduate degrees at Brunel
and what you will learn on the course.
Brunel Business School won the Times Higher Education Awards Business School of the Year 2013
- This specialist programme is designed for pre-experience students seeking a career in international management/international business
- Tutors are active members of world class Centre for Research Entrepreneurship, International Business and Innovation in Emerging Markets
A number of Associate memberships to the CMI are open to graduates of Brunel Business School postgraduate programmes, offering discounted full membership rates upon application. Members of the CMI may use the following letters as appropriate: 'ACMI', Members 'MCMI' and Fellows 'FCMI'.
Teaching and Assessment
- Modules are typically assessed by individual assessment, or an examination in May.
- Teaching methods include lectures and informal small study groups.
- Coursework and examinations place considerable stress on the ability to think and reason critically, but constructively.
- The dissertation (12,000 words) is the capstone demonstration of these skills, requiring students to conceive, justify, design and execute a major project.
- Individual and/or group presentations using laptops, PCs and digital projectors.
Modes of Study
One-year full-time in September: The taught element of the course (September to April) includes eight modules; delivery will be by a combination of lectures, seminars and tutorials/group work. A further four months (May to September) is spent undertaking the dissertation.
Previous students of MSc International Business have achieved graduate positions at:
Employability Events, Visits and Training
The School’s Business Life Employability Programme is designed to help students to acquire a range of employability and networking skills. It enables them to gain a distinct edge in the labour market and to manage their career search and development more effectively. Typical events have included:
- Business Life Capstone Event
As part of their Business Planning module, postgraduate business students were invited to collaborate with Brunel’s annual Made in Brunel exhibition to provide a route to market for real creative and entrepreneurial products conceived by Brunel’s engineering and design students. Students from MSc Management and MSc Marketing not only created commercialisation plans for the products, but were invited to pitch their ideas to a panel of industry professionals and academic judges.
- BAT (Bloomberg Aptitude Test) with Bloomberg
The BAT is offered as a three-hour online test taken on campus within an invigilated environment with a Bloomberg representative. BAT was designed in conjunction with leading financial institutions and academics to uncover an individual’s knowledge and skills relevant for a financial career. Students can choose to submit their names along with test scores or anonymously during job recruitment drives.
- Meet the Professionals Showcase
A professional association is an organisation formed to unite and inform people who work in the same occupation. There are many advantages to joining professional bodies: typically they offer training and access to research, as well as networking opportunities like conferences and forums.
- Brunel Business School regularly invites key professional bodies to showcase these benefits to Business School students on campus. Professional bodies who regularly take part in the Showcase include: ACCA, ICAEW, CIPFA, CIMA, BCS, OR, CMI, CILT, CIPD, CII, CBI, CFA, CIM and CIPR.
UK Industrial and Commercial Visits
Where possible, events and external visits are arranged with UK organisations to help demonstrate theory in practice. Typical events have included:
- Tour of the Mini Car Plant, Oxford
MSc in Management students joined MSc Supply Chain Management students in 2012 on a visit to BMW’s Mini car plant in Oxford. The visit involved a guided tour around the Mini production line which was in full operation during the visit. Students witnessed in practice many of the management topics covered in their degree including international business strategy, new product development, customer focused marketing, operations and supply chain management, and financial resources management.
- CV Writing for Masters Students
Learn more about the Brunel Business Life Employability Programme.
Graduate School Workshops
In addition to the events and training sessions organised within the Business School, masters students have exclusive access to the workshops and skills training provided by Brunel University’s Graduate School. Typical sessions have included:
- CV Writing for Master's Students
A good quality CV is crucial and takes time to perfect. Students on taught masters are invited to attend this special training session on how to prepare Curriculum Vitae towards a targeted job or sector.
- CV Writing Drop-in Clinic for Master's Students
Masters students are invited to bring along their CVs for a one-to-one review session with a careers advisor or as a follow-up to the Graduates School’s CVs writing for Masters Students.
- How to Succeed in Assessment Centres (Master's Students)
This session will help students to prepare for assessment centres which are used as part of an organisation’s recruitment processes for jobs in industry or academia, in particular for highly competitive positions.
- Interview Techniques for Master's Students
A training session especially for masters students that explores the whole competitive process of the interview from preparation to presenting and demonstrating your interest on the day.
- Transferrable Skills for Master's Students
Students are encouraged to widen their skills base during postgraduate study in response to employer demand for transferrable skills as well as intellectual knowledge.
For further Masters Skills Training Courses, visit the Graduate School.
At Brunel we provide many opportunities and experiences within your degree programme and beyond – work-based learning, professional support services, volunteering, mentoring, sports, arts, clubs, societies, and much, much more – and we encourage you to make the most of them, so that you can make the most of yourself.
» More about Employability
Fees for 2016/17 entry
Brunel University is offering Academic Excellence Scholarships to postgraduate students (15%) and scholarships for Brunel Alumni (15%).
Read about funding opportunities available to postgraduate students
UK/EU students can opt to pay in six equal monthly instalments: the first instalment is payable on enrolment and the remaining five by Direct Debit or credit/debit card.
Overseas students can opt to pay in two instalments: 60% on enrolment, and 40% in January for students who commence their course in September (or the remaining 40% in March for selected courses that start in January).
Fees quoted are per annum and are subject to an annual increase.
Entry Criteria 2016/17
A 2:1 UK Honours degree or an equivalent internationally recognised qualification in management, business studies or a cognate discipline (with a large component of management related subjects in their degree).
Applicants from non-business/management disciplines (and without any business/management element) will be eligible if they have a first class Honours degree or the overseas equivalent.
Applicants with a lower second class degree (2:2) in a management; business studies or cognate discipline may be considered, providing they can show evidence of significant relevant work experience (minimum two years full-time post qualification).
Applicants with non-degree qualifications will be also considered who have relevant work experience (minimum five years full-time) and will be assessed on an interview basis.
Applicants may be required to attend an interview.
Entry criteria are subject to review and change each academic year.
International and EU Entry Requirements
If your country or institution is not listed or if you are not sure whether your institution is eligible, please contact Admissions
This information is for guidance only by Brunel University London and by meeting the academic requirements does not guarantee entry for our courses as applications are assessed on case-by-case basis.
English Language Requirements
- IELTS: 6.5 (min 6 in all areas)
- Pearson: 58 (51 in all subscores)
- BrunELT: 65% (min 60% in all areas)
Brunel University London strongly recommends that if you will require a Tier 4 visa, you sit your IELTS test at a test centre that has been approved by UK Visas and Immigration (UKVI) as being a provider of a Secure English Language Test (SELT). Not all test centres have this status. The University can accept IELTS (with the required scores) taken at any official test centre or other English Language qualifications we accept as meeting our main award entry requirements.
However, if you wish to undertake a Pre-sessional English course to further improve your English prior to the start of your degree course, you must sit the test at an approved SELT provider. This is because you will only be able to apply for a Tier 4 student visa to undertake a Pre-sessional English course if you hold a SELT from a UKVI approved test centre. Find out more information about it.
Brunel also offers our own BrunELT English Test and accepts a range of other language courses. We also have Pre-sessional English language courses for students who do not meet these requirements, or who wish to improve their English.
Our International Pathways and Language Centre offers a number of foundation and pre-masters courses to provide you with the academic skills required for your chosen course.
The Pre-Masters course has been designed to prepare international students who have not qualified for direct entry to Brunel University London's Master's degrees. Undertaking a Pre-Master's course will give you time to adjust to the rigorous research and independent study requirements of a postgraduate degree. This will ensure you get the most out of your master's studies at Brunel University London and go on to achieve graduation in your chosen field. See details.