University of Cambridge
University of Cambridge could soon offer a very expensive degree Reuters

The University of Cambridge is planning to launch a new four-year course, the Doctor of Business, which could be approved on 24 May by the university's governing Regent House. The course, costing approximately £230,000 ($333,707), is billed as one of the most expensive degrees in the world.

However, the course, which is likely to start in October 2017, will take only one to two students a year and will be known as the Bus.D, equivalent to a PhD.

According to the Cambridge University Reporter, the proposal has been submitted by Judge Business School with the support of the Faculty Board of Business and Management, the Judge Business School Advisory Board, the Council of the School of Technology, the Board of Graduate Studies, and the General Board's Education Committee.

"It is consistent with Cambridge Judge Business School's long-term strategy and with the university's research impact objectives.

"The degree will meet an evident demand from highly placed senior executives in business, NGOs, charities, and similar organizations, who are accomplished leaders who have built or run major companies and organizations," says the University's journal.

The degree is for individuals at very senior levels in their careers rather than those in their early or mid-careers.

"This differentiation, coupled with Cambridge's reputation, should make it attractive to the most senior leaders around the world, and market research undertaken by Cambridge Judge Business School indicates that the degree is likely to attract significant interest," the general board's proposal said.

"It is expected that over the duration of the Bus.D, the student's total time commitment will be equivalent to the full-time PhD" and will lead to a dissertation of 200 pages in 'maximal length'," according to the proposal.

The proposed course has also come in for some criticism especially regarding its fees.

Gill Evans, a veteran professor of medieval theology at Cambridge, has called business schools "a lucrative bolt-on for a university" and says that "nearly a quarter of a million per doctoral student is a nice little earner" in her draft speech to be presented on 24 May at Regent Hose, as reported in The Times Higher Education.

She has also called the fees "gigantic", asking "where is the intellectual justification for this departure into new doctoral territory?"