This article is about the Doctor of Business Administration (DBA) degrees that were developed in the UK during the 1990s. It looks at the range of programme structures, content and learning support used. The article is based on a content analysis of the 16 DBA programmes in the UK at the end of 1999. The main conclusion is that there is a tension in the form and function of DBAs through their relationship with the traditional PhD. The tension is captured in the question: To what extent do programme developers follow the design of the ’‘gold standard” PhD and to what extent do they design a programme aimed at meeting the learning outcomes of the DBA that distinguish it from a PhD?
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