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FAQs - Frequently asked questions

In the list of Frequently Asked Questions you will find some answers to questions regarding all aspects of the Kellogg-WHU Executive MBA Program. For any further questions, please contact us directly.


1. What are the differences between a Part-Time MBA and an Executive MBA?

Part-Time MBA Programs are usually for “young professionals” from various sectors who have 2-5 years professional experience and who are either looking to change industries, develop their business acumen or step into management roles within their companies while still working full-time.

The Kellogg-WHU Executive MBA Program is geared towards experienced managers and mid-career professionals with a minimum work experience of 8-10 years. Our modular program structure allows you to apply the knowledge acquired through outstanding faculty and team members back to your workplace facilitating the learning process. In addition, our Program puts strong emphasis on personal development and responsible leadership through fully integrated units such as individual coaching & profiling, outdoor leadership training, and 360° peer feedback sessions.

2. What credentials does the program award upon graduation?

Upon successful completion of the Program, you will receive a fully accredited and recognized joint MBA degree awarded by both WHU - Otto Beisheim School of Management and the Kellogg School of Management at Northwestern University.

3. Do you offer career placement services?

The Kellogg-WHU Executive MBA Program offers: Career management in the form of personal coaching and profiling sessions; leadership training and personal development through fully integrated units; regular international networking opportunities; learning from international business leaders through guest speaker series and workshops; and plenty of online resources.

4. Which alumni network will I belong to?

Thanks to our partnership with the Kellogg School of Management, our students and alumni can benefit from both the WHU Alumni Network (InPraxi) and the Kellogg Alumni Network, which combined represent over 55,000 graduates spanning 90 countries. This is a great way to keep strong bonds with fellow alumni and both universities long after graduation.

5. Where do your students come from?

We have no admissions restrictions in terms of geographic location, however we do not offer distance learning: All class sessions are delivered in person in a classroom setting whether on the WHU campuses in Germany during the Live-In Weekend classes, or at the Kellogg School of Management campus or our partner institutions’ campuses around the world during the International Live-In Weeks.  The Global Classroom setting allows you to build strong relationships with your classmates, the faculty and EMBA students outside of your network.

6. How does the Kellogg-WHU life-long learning advantage work?

Alumni are welcomed back to class to get a fresh perspective and new business inspirations at no additional costs. As a Kellogg-WHU alumnus/a, you can attend courses at one of our partner institutions all over the world or come back to WHU’s campuses to take part in a current EMBA course.

7. What are the best ways to learn about the program?

As a first step, we invite you to fully explore our website and have a look at our brochure in order to familiarize yourself with our program. However, the best way to get real insights about our program is to meet the EMBA staff, alumni, and faculty in person on campus during our info & interview days or at one of our global events. You can also easily get in touch with us via phone at +49 261 6509-183 or e-mail at emba@whu.edu.


1. What is the main focus of the program curriculum? Can we choose a major or specialization?

Our Program curriculum focuses on general management functions and fully integrates units related to personal development and leadership training. While we do not offer formal majors or specializations, our curriculum includes a choice of advanced courses and global electives, which allows you to put emphasis on a particular area of interest. Courses on offer always reflect the latest developments in the field, ensuring academic excellence remains at the forefront.

2. How does the selection of global electives work?

In Year 2 of the Program, Kellogg-WHU EMBA students are required to pick at least 1 Global Elective (composed of 2 courses) held at one of our prestigious international partner schools:  the Kellogg School of Management at Northwestern University (USA; Chicago & Miami campuses), Hong Kong University of Science and Technology (Hong Kong), Guanghua School of Management at Peking University (China), Tel Aviv University (Israel), York University (Canada). Through Global Electives, students have the opportunity to further tailor their area of interest and focus on a particular management function or region of the world. Selection of Global Electives is based on preference and seat availability. For more information about our Program Structure & Curriculum, please click on the link.

3. How much time commitment per week is expected for me to succeed in the program?

Successfully completing an EMBA requires a significant commitment from you and full support from your employer and family. The Kellogg-WHU EMBA Program’s schedule has been optimized throughout the years to maximize learning and personal development and minimize time away from work and home. Sufficient time for group assignments has been allocated during Live-In Weekends and Weeks. While the time commitment varies on an individual basis, you can expect to dedicate approximately 2 hours per day on individual study.

4. How are study-groups put together?

Our Program values diversity, both cultural and professional, and the study groups are a pure reflection of that. Study groups are made of about five to six students with whom you will work closely during the first year of the Program. In the second year of the Program, you will work with a new team and during the Global Elective weeks, you will work in mixed study groups with students from all partner programs. When assembling the study groups, we look for a balance of educational/work/industry/seniority background, gender and nationality.

5. How is individual performance assessed?

Individual performance can be assessed through exams, in-class assignments, participation, and the master’s thesis. All exams and assessments take place either during class, or remotely (at home) within 2 weeks following the end of a module.

6. How many days in total do I need to take off from work?

Your choice of Global Electives in Year 2 and your required travel time will dictate exactly how many days you will need to take off from work. However, on average, you will need to take off a total of 52 days (Saturdays/Sundays not included) over the entire 2-year Program.

7. Who teaches at the Kellogg-WHU EMBA Program?

Kellogg-WHU EMBA Students are taught by renowned professors from the Kellogg School of Management, WHU and international partner schools. Our faculty is actively involved in today’s complex business world and is able to share its best practices & tools and bring its diverse experiences into the classroom.  See complete list of our faculty profiles.

8. Does the program require writing a Master Thesis?

Yes, the program requires writing a Master Thesis. The Master Thesis shall be completed and submitted within the last 3 months of Year 2.The Master Thesis may be project-related (practical), research-based or an elaborated Business Plan. More information about the Master Thesis.


1. Is there an application fee?

A €200 non-refundable application fee is payable prior to participation in the interviews.

2. Is the GMAT required?

No, we do not require the GMAT for applicants who hold an undergraduate degree. Our Program puts a strong emphasis on professional and managerial experience. In addition, our Interview Days are an integral part of the overall admissions assessment. The Interview Day provides a uniform way of assessing candidates’ analytical, communication, and teamwork skills and allows the Admissions Committee to get a better picture of the candidates’ motivation, professional journey and development.

3. Do I need to take the TOEFL?

Proficiency in reading, writing and speaking English is required as participation in courses and study groups requires solid language skills. All applicants whose native language is not English and who attended a college or university in a country where the native language is not English must take either the TOEFL (IBT format) and obtain a score of 100 or better or the IELTS and obtain a score of at least 7.0.

4. How is the interview day structured?

More information on the structure and schedule of Interview Days.

5. What does the admissions committee consider when reviewing applications?

We look for candidates with diverse cultural and professional backgrounds and strong motivations who will proactively contribute and share insights they have gained throughout their professional and personal experiences. A competitive applicant demonstrates cross-cultural understanding and an international outlook, and a clear desire for personal growth, both in the classroom and during group projects. In addition, candidates must show their academic capability to address the intensive, rigorous and challenging EMBA curriculum. The Interview Day provides a uniform way of assessing candidates’ analytical, teamwork, and communication skills, and allows the Admissions Committee to know the candidate on a more personal level.

6. When will I be notified of the admissions committee decision?

You will be notified of the admissions committee’s decision within 2 weeks following the Interview Day. If you get positive feedback, you will then be required to submit the remaining application materials. Once we have received all required application materials, you will receive a contract officially confirming your acceptance into our program.

7. When does the program start?

The Program starts in September of each year.


1. What does “sponsorship” mean?

Sponsorship means at least one thing: That your company must sponsor you for your time away from the office. While you do not need to be sponsored financially by your company to be eligible for our program, you are required to submit a sponsorship letter demonstrating that your company supports your decision to pursue an Executive MBA and allows the time away from work.
Every year, around half of the EMBA class receives full or partial financial sponsorship (see sponsorship trends).

2. How do I negotiate sponsorship?

The Kellogg-WHU EMBA Program should be viewed as a win-win situation for both the sponsored candidate and sponsoring company. The sponsoring company invests time (and in some cases money) in developing your leadership skills and rewarding your ambitions. In return, the sponsored candidate contributes even more to the company through a strengthened job performance and broadened managerial skills. In addition, with the Kellogg-WHU EMBA modular schedule, the sponsored candidate is able to immediately apply the business tools and best practices learned through the Kellogg-WHU faculty and peers.

3. How can I finance my EMBA education?

Very often, employers provide some sort of financial support to EMBA participants but for those who require additional funding, several options are available. Visit our Tuition & Financing page for more information.

4. What does the tuition fee include?

The Program fee for the entire Kellogg-WHU Executive MBA Program (2015-2017) is €75,000. The fee includes: teaching fees for the entire duration of the program, all books and course materials, all meals (breakfast, lunch, dinner) during class days, accommodation during all required global electives and live-in sessions at the Kellogg School of Management, use of school facilities (gym, library,...), all leadership development workshops and required business coaching sessions.

Flights and other means of transportation to/from the global electives, live-in sessions at the Kellogg School of Management, and WHU campuses, as well as accommodation on WHU campuses in Germany are at each candidate’s own expense.

5. When is tuition due?

The 2015-2017 Program fee of €75,000 is payable in 4 installments (due at the beginning of September and around January/February of Year 1 & 2).

6. Do you offer an early bird tuition reduction?

Candidates who submit their full application by May 31st, 2015 will benefit from our early bird offer and receive a tuition fee reduction of € 3,000.

Program Brochure

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