IE Business School is the No. 1 business school in the world in the Financial Times 2014 ranking of online MBA programs. This achievement further consolidates the No. 1 position worldwide attained by the School in the QS Distance Online MBA Ranking 2014 published a few weeks ago by QS Intelligence Unit.

We live in a digital and globalized world. Although the education sector has taken longer than other sectors to adapt to change and technological innovation, in recent years technology has revolutionized management education, making it more accessible and flexible. The result is that hundreds of thousands of professionals from every continent are now able to undertake top-level management programs, combining study with work without having to leave their countries of origin. FT’s decision to launch a ranking of online MBA programs is further confirmation that the business education sector has entered a new phase.

According to the findings of the latest World Conference on E-Learning, online education will have a worldwide turnover of $130 billion in 2015. Moreover, the Sloan Consortium’s 2013 Report on Online Learning states that over 7 million people in the US, almost a third of the country’s students, are doing postgraduate programs that include an online component.

The criteria on which the Financial Times ranking is based includes student profiles, career progression, idea generation, program diversity, and quality of faculty. The IE Business School program which formed part of the survey was its Global MBA Blended program, a part-time MBA with students from over 50 countries with an average of 6 years’ experience in management. The Global MBA Blended combines face-to-face and online formats, and features onsite sessions, videoconferences, and discussion forums. The program takes place in a globalized and digital environment, equipping students with the knowledge and skill-sets they need to excel in multidisciplinary teams working on a remote basis.

“We were pioneers back in 2001 when we launched our online learning unit,” says Ignacio Gafo, Vice Dean of Blended Programs at IE Business School. “Since then we have taught over 2,000 directors from 90 countries, designed and implemented 15 master programs, produced 300 multimedia cases, and even launched our first MOOCs in collaboration with Coursera. The result of the Financial Times ranking evidences the quality of our blended learning model and the efforts made by our entire team.”

IE Business School’s portfolio of blended programs includes the IE/SMU MBA, the Executive MBA and Global MBA programs, available in both onsite or blended format, and in English or Spanish. IE Business School also runs the IE/Brown Executive MBA jointly with Brown University, an Ivy League university based in Providence (US). The portfolio is rounded off with the Global Executive MBA which combines face-to-face periods in Spain, Singapore, United States, and Brazil, with online modules.

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