Oxford vs LBS MBA: Which Business School is better for MBA?

Oxford vs LBS MBA: It’s a dream for all MBA aspirants wanting to study abroad. Getting a chance to study in the Oxford or London Business School (LBS) is a life-made for most. But it’s often tough to choose between Oxford vs LBS, when you get a call from both. Let’s take a look at the pros and cons of the Oxford MBA and the LBS MBA.

Oxford vs LBS MBA: Which is better?

Let’s consider the two institutes under the following parameters.


The MBA from London Business School can be finished in 15 months, if you take fewer electives. But most candidates choose the 21-month full-time program that starts every year in late August with an orientation and leadership module which runs through September, followed by three study terms. Students mainly learn through case discussions and structured lectures, along with workshops and tutorials. Group work is also part of the course.

The MBA from University Oxford is a one-year program with a near-complete integration of all the 38 affiliated colleges. But the program is larger and emphasizes more on social enterprise and entrepreneurship via the highly regarded Skoll Centre. Oxford is a relative newcomer to MBA programs, having started the course only in 1996. In the Oxford vs LBS battle, the latter steals a mile here.

Student composition

Oxford offers a truly “global” MBA. Only a handful of students are from Britain. More than 95% are from outside UK, representing at least 40 countries. About 31% are from North America, 3% from South America, 23% from South Asia, and 10% from Western Europe.

The LBS, on its part, has about 400 MBA students from across 59 countries. It indicates that LBS is more preferred globally, and should be your choice if you want to interact with people from a more diverse global background. Here too the Oxford vs LBS tussle has a winner in the latter. The famous London life is an added attraction for LBS students.

Campus placements

Oxford attracts all leading multinational companies and consultancy firms. But 2015 hasn’t been that great with only two McKinsey consultants but none from BCG or Bain. Goldman Sachs too hired from Oxford and so did JP Morgan. But private equities and hedge firms, including Morgan Stanley, game the campus a miss.

Campus recruitment at LBS, on the other hand, was attended by biggies from all sectors of the industry. Those who gave Oxford a miss, were there in London. LBS has been longer in operation and the preferred choice in the Oxford vs LBS debate.


Oxford is largely considered as an elitist business school because of the university’s long standing heritage. The image is hard to overcome. The administration is trying to portray Oxford as a modern business school. A lot of innovation is underway. The university is looking beyond the typical elite boarding school-type talent. University of Melbourne, McGill University, Montreal, and the University of Mumbai are feeder institutes to Oxford.

LBS offer a better return on investment according to Forbes and could be the preferred choice for many in the Oxford vs LBS contest. But you shouldn’t worry much in this regard as getting an opportunity to study in either of these two institutes is an achievement in itself.