Market research for Ranking the MBAs was undertaken among three groups:
* Employers with a history of employing MBAs or of encouraging staff to undertake MBAs, either company sponsored or at their own expense. We questioned executives from 300 employers, of which 270 were from the private sector and 30 from the public sector, either government departments or state-owned enterprises. Subjects were drawn from around the country.
* MBA graduates representing all the business schools taking part in Ranking the MBAs. Of the 1,340 who completed our questionnaires, 47% graduated in 2015, 28% in 2014, 20% in 2013 and 5% before that. Most (84%) live in SA, but 16% are based elsewhere in Africa, the UK, North America, Australia and Asia. Of the total, 69% were male and 31% female.
* Business schools whose MBA programmes are accredited by the Council on Higher Education. Eighteen schools completed our questionnaires: Gordon Institute of Business Science, University of Pretoria; Henley Business School, part of the University of Reading in the UK; Management College of Southern Africa; Milpark Business School; Nelson Mandela Metropolitan University Business School in Port Elizabeth; North-West University Graduate School of Business & Government Leadership in Mahikeng; North-West University Potchefstroom Business School; Regenesys Business School; Regent Business School; Turfloop Graduate School of Leadership, University of Limpopo; Tshwane University of Technology Business School; University of Cape Town Graduate School of Business; University of the Free State Business School; University of KwaZulu Natal Graduate School of Business & Leadership; University of SA (Unisa) Graduate School of Business Leadership; University of Stellenbosch Business School; and Wits Business School.
The two North-West University schools, at Potchefstroom and Mahikeng, previously operated independently but have merged into a single institution, the School of Business & Governance. Both former schools contributed figures for the tables on these pages but to avoid confusion, our tables use figures only from Potchefstroom, which is the headquarters of the combined school.
Unisa previously offered only a master of business leadership, but from this year it also offers an MBA.
Research was conducted by the market research division of Times Media Group and by Lodestar Marketing Research.