International Business MSc

Postgraduate (12 months, 15 months full-time)


January, September

Intermediate awards: PG Cert, PG Dip

Course duration

September start 12 months; January start 15 months.

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Apply directly to ARU


You’re motivated by the possibilities that international business will unlock for you. And our International Business Masters degree has been designed with your ambitions in mind. You understand the importance of making your own career decisions, and what really sets this course apart are the many different options you can choose, such as a semester abroad in Switzerland or the Netherlands and graduating with a dual degree or choosing your optional modules. So you can personalise the course to suit your ambitions while getting the crucial tools of international business kit.

Find out more about teaching options and studying during COVID-19 in the Entry requirements section, below.

Full description


Our International Business Masters degree is for you if you’re looking to forge a career in international business. It will prepare you for roles as diverse as business development, marketing, international supply chain management, logistics, project management, HR, banking, international finance and management consultancy.

Modules & assessment

Core Modules

  • Contemporary Issues in International Management
    Organisations and managers have to adapt, change and evolve to meet the conflicting, competing and complex business related environmental change factors, whose rate of change is developing at an exponential rate. Irresistible influences fromNational, International and Global Macro. Micro and Operating environments are shaping and influencing contemporary management theories and practice. Today’s managers must equip themselves with new skills and knowledge in order to interact with and respond to the emerging challenges that change brings and where appropriate take the required corrective action. Business leaders are required to develop higher level management skills, especially critical evaluation and decision making within National, International and Global contexts, when needing to respond effectively to the challenges within theseconstantly changing operating environments This module provides professional managers with an opportunity to consider eflect and critically appraise a range of current contemporary management issues, including developing International lenses of reference from a theoretical and practical application whilst relating these factors to the art of management. The course content will provide a framework to assess how these issues impact within organisations and how managers are able to reactto these issues. The module will develop your critical appreciation of the challenges faced by management professionals in developing responses to business environment conditions which are complex, dynamic and diverse. You'll engage with contemporary issues in context with associated links to organisational strategy and management approaches and systems related to information, networks and collaborations as well as organisational learning.In achieving its overall objectives, You'll be encouraged to further develop, engage, evaluate and critique your contemporary understanding with a view to the realities of practice and organisations. You'll consider interactions, theories and frameworks that explain contemporary issues and ground this in organisational and individual contexts. It is widely accepted that such issues are crucial to the viability of organisations across all sectors and contexts and the creation of value (however defined).
  • Supply Chain Strategy and Practice
    Supply chain management is a major strategic concern for organisations, it is often stated that individual organisations no longer compete, but that the impetus of competition has shifted to supply chains/networks. A number of strategic philosophies and techniques are explored on the module that focuses on improving the efficiency and effectiveness of supply chain flow. This module highlights how the ever-demanding customer creates a need for managing the network from raw materials to end customer across organisational interfaces. Therefore, supply chain networks rely on effective management of relationships and outsourcing arrangements. Supply chains can be fragile due to the participants and external risks, risk management strategies are applied within the module. Any logistics/supply chain strategy has to make trade-offs in terms of cost; quality; flexibility; dependability and time. These strategic priorities are explored in an intensive supply chain simulation game. The game simulates a product supply chain, including necessary functions produces results and statistics about the supply chain that you must improve over the course of the trimester. The overall aim is to provide an insight into the system consequences of decisions, focusing on operational decisions, e.g. procurement, manufacturing, distribution, transport etc. Here you'll work in teams, to represent the management of the company, developing a strategy and work together to implement their decisions. The impetus is on real-life practice and the impetus here is on learning by doing building on team-work; communication; analytical; project management; time management and presentation skills.
  • Finance for Decision Making
    Management decision making is a complex subject involving many variable factors. The primary objective of this module is to provide a conceptual and analytical framework for looking at organisations operating in capital, financial and operational markets. You'll explore the financial element contained in decisions and the techniques that may be used to assist informed management decisions. You start by considering the availability of financial information that may be relevant to decision making and whether this fits with the information you need to make the decision. This is further developed to the type of decision and differing requirements, leading to a more bespoke deliverable information set that meets the context of the decision. You'll gain an appreciation of core themes prevalent throughout financial management. The module also explores the financial techniques developed by financial and management accountants and how they may be used and applied. Finally, consideration is given to the relevance and weighting of the financial element in the decision making process and how qualitative issues may be incorporated in the overall decision. Strategic financial management issues covered include financial statement analysis, budget and performance management, raising finance (both short and long term), efficient allocation and utilisation of financial resources (including investment decisions), and mergers and acquisitions as well as foreign currency and interest rate risk management. Different organisations and sectors are covered to develop your knowledge and skills in finance and business analysis through practical tasks involving developing financial strategies, conducting a financial analysis, managing foreign currency risks and by using professional database such as FAME and Osiris, etc.
  • International Marketing and Brand Management
    In today’s digital world, big brands are known and coveted by consumers around the world. In fact, social influencers can create a desire for a brand or a product in countries where it is not even available! In this module, you'll learn the techniques of international marketing and how brands can appeal to consumers in different markets, including how to assess market opportunities and develop brand strategies appropriate for a variety of international markets. In particular, you'll learn more about brand management theory and analyse why some brands manage to cut through cultural boundaries to target a broader consumer base. This will involve deconstructing brands to understand the value they create for the consumer and the essence of their appeal. Brand listings will also be examined to understand what makes a brand valuable, how to increase brand equity, and how other brands can improve their ranking.
  • Leadership and Change
    You'll investigate and critically evaluate historical and contemporary approaches to leadership theory, focusing especially on leadership at junior to middle management level. Classical theories of leadership will be examined including traits theory, behavioural theories and contingency theories. Some contemporary theories will include issues such as emotional intelligence, psychodynamics and leader-led relations. There will be a strong emphasis on applying the theory to your own personal leadership with a view to enhancing leadership performance in preparation for middle management roles within the organisation. Management of change will be another key emphasis, including organisational politics & power, change theories and the implementation of the change process. Issues for consideration will include the organisational context of change, resistance to change and practical management of the change process.
  • Postgraduate Major Project
    This major project module allows you to engage in a substantial individual primary and/or secondary research project focussed on a topic relevant to your business degree and specialist subject area under the supervision and guidance of a member of academic staff. Supervisors will discuss with you the contemporary research problems and issues based on your research and practice, and you will conduct literature reviews, evaluate and critically appraise a range of information, investigate and adopt suitable theoretical frameworks, research methodologies and methods, and process and analyse data to produce a coherent and justified solution to the problem(s) identified. Throughout the module your supervisor will support you in terms of content and skills development so that you can work semi-autonomously on your individual research project. This is achieved through regular supervisory meetings throughout the year, which will allow for individual discussion of the tasks that will have to be completed in order to develop the project smoothly.


We’ll asses your progress through a range of written assignments, portfolio and presentations. You’ll have the option to carry out both group and individual work. As part of this course, you will also create impact on current knowledge by contributing to existing research by undertaking a Postgraduate Major Project.

This is a 12  or 15 month programme

Please note that modules are subject to change and availability.

Where you'll study

Your faculty

You have a highly active mind and see opportunity everywhere. Now you need theory and life-changing skills to sharpen your approach to management. At the Faculty of Business & Law, you will immerse yourself in a multicultural environment where technology blends with teaching to create a dynamic and innovative learning environment. An environment to help you gain those skills.

Where can I study?

Lord Ashcroft Building on our Cambridge campus

Our campus is close to the centre of Cambridge, often described as the perfect student city.

Explore our Cambridge campus

Fees & funding

Course fees

UK students starting 2021/22 (per year)


International students starting 2021/22 (per year)


Additional costs

Semester at a European University
Flights may cost up to £500
Accommodation may cost up to £1,000.

How do I pay my fees?

UK students

You can pay your fees upfront, in full or in instalments – though you won't need to pay until you've accepted an offer to study with us.

How to pay your fees directly

International students

You can pay your fees upfront, in full or in two instalments. We will also ask you for a deposit of £4,000 or a sponsorship letter. Details will be in your offer letter.

Paying your fees

Funding for postgraduate students

It’s important to decide how to fund your course before applying. Use our finance guide for postgraduate students to learn more about postgraduate loans and other funding options.

We offer a fantastic range of ARU scholarships and bursaries, which provide extra financial support while you're at university.

International students

As well as a number of scholarships, we offer an early payment discount. Explore your options:

Entry requirements

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Important additional notes

Whether you're studying entirely online or through a blend of on-campus and online learning from September 2020, you'll need a computer and reliable internet access to successfully engage with your course. A small number of our courses require additional technical specifications or specialist materials. Before starting the course, we recommend that you check our technical requirements for online learning. Our website also has general information for new students about starting university in 2020-21.

Our published entry requirements are a guide only and our decision will be based on your overall suitability for the course as well as whether you meet the minimum entry requirements. Other equivalent qualifications may be accepted for entry to this course, please email for further information.

Due to national restrictions all universities in England, including ARU, are only able to provide face to face teaching on campus for a limited number of courses.

Teaching options

In response to the COVID-19 global pandemic all our students can choose to either study face to face on campus or online only, and students are able to change their mode of delivery at given dates throughout the trimester.

For on-campus teaching, we offer at least four hours face-to-face teaching related contact time per week for our undergraduate full-time courses, supported by online learning using our established online learning systems. The number of contact hours vary course by course, and you can contact us for further information. The provision offered is subject to change due to the possibility of further Government restrictions, however we remain committed to delivering face-to-face teaching and ensuring a COVID-19 secure environment.

In the event that there are further changes to the current restrictions that are in place due to the pandemic, we may need to move some courses online only at short notice to remain in line with Government guidelines and ensure the continued safety of our students and staff.

View the impact of the current restrictions.

International students

We welcome applications from international and EU students, and accept a range of international qualifications.

Whether you're studying entirely online or through a blend of face-to-face and online learning from September 2020, you'll need a computer and reliable internet access to successfully engage with your course. Before starting the course, we recommend that you check our technical requirements for online learning.

English language requirements

If English is not your first language, you'll need to make sure you meet our English language requirements for postgraduate courses.

Check the standard entry requirements for IELTS requirements for this course.

Improving your English language skills

If you don't meet our English language requirements, we offer a range of courses which could help you achieve the level required for entry.

We also provide our own English Language Proficiency Test (ELPT) in the UK and overseas. To find out if we are planning to hold an ELPT in your country, contact our country managers.

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Get more information

UK & EU applicants

01245 68 68 68

Enquire online

International applicants

+44 1245 68 68 68

Enquire online