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Stanford Graduate School of Business has re-named its Sloan masters programme the Stanford MSx degree. The school has been one of three to teach the Sloan one-year immersion degree for very senior managers - the other two are MIT Sloan in the US and London Business School in the UK.

The re-branding follows a re-design of the degree by Stanford, including a lengthening of the programme from 10 to 12 months and a change in the start date - the Stanford MSx will begin in July. The name change has been on the cards for some time, to avoid confusion between the Stanford programme and that at MIT.

Stanford is reporting increased applications for the degree. In the 2013-2014 academic year the school enrolled 88 senior managers on the programme, up 57 per cent on the previous year. When the programme was initiated more than 50 years ago by US industrialist Alfred P Sloan, it was designed for corporations. But these days only a third of Stanford students are corporately-sponsored, with two-thirds footing the bill themselves.

The Sloan Masters is one of only a handful of full-time programmes that targets very senior managers, although Executive MBAs - MBAs for working managers - offer a similar education to those who remaim in employment.

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