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The main question for students considering furthering their management studies is what the difference between MBA vs PGDM courses is, and whether to pursue a Post Graduate Diploma in Management (PGDM) or a Master of Business Administration (MBA). A student who wants to pursue management studies after graduation is frequently perplexed about choosing between MBA and PGDM programs. They get caught up in the benefits and drawbacks of these two degrees. This decision is critical because it will be a life-changing decision that will help enhance your portfolio. We’ll do our best to help you disconnect from your uncertainty.
So, let us see MBA vs PGDM up close.
The primary distinction between these two programs is that the PGDM is a diploma program, and the MBA is a degree program. Furthermore, many people believe that the market value of a diploma program (PGDM) does not correspond to the degree level (MBA). However, this notion is still up for debate. Because there is no difference between an MBA vs PGDM in terms of industry acceptance or admission to higher education.
Both programs teach management skills, and recruiters are concerned with the quality of education provided by the business school, its unique value propositions, the track record of its alumni, and the value that graduates bring to the table.
A degree was always thought to be more valuable than a diploma at the undergraduate level. In the case of postgraduate courses, such as management programs, the value is determined by the quality and value provided by the business school and the program, rather than the nomenclature. Instead of concentrating on a degree or diploma, it is critical to identify your career objectives and enroll in a reputable university.
When applying for a PGDM course, it is necessary to make sure that the college has the necessary accreditations because they are typically offered by autonomous bodies. Some private universities and institutes may be unaccredited hence you should apply for admission only after the confirmation. MBA programs are accredited by universities and thus carry a lower risk of fraud.
Another factor in differentiating MBA and PGDM is the syllabus. In the majority of the MBA courses; the curriculum is formulated by the university and therefore is pretty rigid in that sense. So, the core syllabus is expected to be the same in two different MBA colleges recognized by the same university.
Conversely, PGDM courses are individually designed by an institute, which leads to more flexibility in the curriculum. Every year, changes in the industry force changes in the curriculum. Therefore, colleges offering a PGDM program are expected to be more suitable and aligned with the trends in the corporate world.
The focus of the course
Both courses’ core subjects, MBA and PGDM, are about the same. MBA programs, according to experts, are more concerned with technical and theoretical aspects of management rather than the application of practical knowledge.
In contrast, PGDM courses are more focused on the industry and its practical knowledge. This course is designed to assist students in developing the skills needed in today’s market. Therefore, the PGDM course is more beneficial to students in terms of developing practical marketing skills while keeping industrial perspectives in mind.
MBA programs in general follow a set curriculum and are more theoretical. There is some rigidity in curriculum revision to keep up with changes in the industry and economic landscape. These revisions take 3-5 years to complete. Private universities, on the other hand, update their curriculum on a more regular basis.
The PGDM curriculum, on the other hand, can be revised or updated at the discretion of the business school to keep up with new industry requirements and standards. This allows schools to maintain a competitive advantage, and such competition encourages rampant curriculum and pedagogical innovation. In addition, as opposed to pure theoretical learning, such programs allow for more practical application-based learning.
Any good PGDM program would include industry experts in curriculum design. These veterans bring foresight, which encourages the incorporation of emerging and disruptive technologies like AI, Design Thinking, and Business Analytics into management curricula.
Along these lines, it should be noted that MBA exams are administered by respective universities, and all colleges within a given university will have the same exams. In the case of IIMs and private b-schools, the exams are administered by the schools themselves, which have considerable control over their evaluation criteria.
Generally speaking, an MBA is less expensive than a PGDM. This is so because of the grants that these institutions receive from the government for these MBA programs. Aspirants can afford to attend these universities thanks to government grants and financial aid. Students must pay the entire program fee in order to pursue a PGP or PGDM degree.
Innovative Teaching Methods
A high-quality PGDM program provides much more than classroom instruction. Case study pedagogy is very important in PGDM courses because it helps students understand how concepts are applied in real-world situations. These cases are based on classic as well as contemporary business cases that have shaped the industry over the years. Learning occurs outside of the classroom as well, in the form of extra-curricular activities, social initiatives, events, competitions, and so on, to develop a variety of soft skills necessary for management professionals.
MBA students have the chance to interact with many thought leaders and CXOs during intensive industry interface programs, which helps them gain industry perspective and blur the lines between theory and practical application.
Both programs include live projects, summer internships with leading corporations, and regular guest lectures, conclaves, and symposiums – all of which contribute to the development of strong leadership, managerial, and analytical skills.
Another important distinction between PGDM and MBA is that the entrance exams required to apply for an MBA or PGDM vary depending on whether you are studying in India or abroad. To study MBA abroad, you must provide GMAT scores, and many universities accept GRE scores as well. In India, the GMAT is widely accepted, along with other management exams such as CAT, MAT, ATMA, XAT, NMAT, SNAP, and so on. Furthermore, if you intend to pursue a PG Diploma in a management field abroad, you may or may not be required to provide GMAT scores, depending on your chosen course and university.
Once the curriculum, prerequisites, specializations, and other details of both courses are known, it narrows down to a single question. Is PGDM better than MBA and what is the scope of both of these programs? The most important thing, after all, is your interests and career goals. Both programs are in high demand in the industry and have factors behind work performances. Despite their differences, the scope of MBA and PGDM programs are both greatly influenced by the institution you choose.
The secret to selecting the best option for your needs is weighing the pros and cons. However, the course that sparks your interest is the one that will give you the biggest career advantage. The ultimate goal of both programs is to prepare you as a student for a career in management. Examine your areas of strength and interest. Select the programme where you can develop your skills and move closer to achieving your career goals.
MBA vs. PGDM – Impact on Your Career
Let’s take a closer look by classifying the career impact of these courses into two categories, higher education, and jobs. There is a significant difference beginning with higher education. Obtaining an MBA degree is more valuable than obtaining a diploma. The MBA qualifies a person for a master’s degree, whereas the PGDM qualifies a person for a diploma. But this has nothing to do with students’ industrial success or the quality of knowledge imparted in institutes.
It is important to note that the institute’s infrastructure, which includes the faculty and teaching methodology, makes all the difference. In addition, the institute’s track record and reputation distinguish it from the competition. For obvious reasons, a degree or diploma from a reputable institute is always more valuable.
Therefore, it doesn’t matter which course you take if you want to build a successful career in management. All that matters is the institute you choose, so think practically when selecting a management institute.
Top MBA/PGDM Universities in the World
- London Business School, U.K.
- University of Pennsylvania, Wharton, U.S.A.
- Harvard Business School U.S.A.
- INSEAD, France / Singapore
- Stanford Graduate School of Business, U.S.A.
- Hong Kong UST Business School, China
- Columbia Business School, U.S.A.
- IE Business School, Spain
- ISDI Business School, Spain
- MIT Sloan School of Management, U.S.A.
- Indian Institute of Management, Ahmedabad (IIMA) India
- University of Chicago, Booth, U.S.A
- Indian School of Business, India
- CEIBS, China
- New York University: Stern, U.S.A.
- Yale School of Management, U.S.A.
- IMD Switzerland
- Dartmouth College, Tuck, U.S.A.
- HEC Paris, France
- Duke University, Fuqua, U.S.A.
- PGDM programs follow an industry-oriented curriculum with a more practical approach, whereas MBA programs are more theoretical.
- A PGDM from any top school will almost certainly land you a highly rewarding career. PGDM graduates may have an advantage because of the program’s pedagogy and close industry interaction, allowing them to remain more pragmatic and relevant in the industry for a longer period.
- An MBA from a prestigious college or university with a long track record in the industry can help you achieve certain immediate career goals for a fraction of the cost.
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Q1. Which is more valuable, MBA or PGDM?
Answer – The worth of an MBA and PGDM is determined by factors such as the quality of the course curriculum and pedagogy, as well as the institute’s ranking and reputation.
Q2. Is the PGDM equivalent to the MBA?
Answer – Because PGDM is a diploma program and MBA is a degree program, they are not completely interchangeable. However, the core subjects and curriculum of the MBA and PGDM are very similar.
Q3. Do IIMs offer MBA or PGDM programs?
Answer – Some IIMs provide MBAs, while others provide Post Graduate Programmes (PGPs) or Post Graduate Programmes in Management (PGPM). Until 2017, the IIMs only offered PGDM and PGP degrees, but the IIM Bill passed that year allows them to also offer MBA degrees.
Q4. Can I pursue an MBA after completing a PGDM?
Answer – According to the MBA eligibility criteria, candidates must have a bachelor’s degree from a recognized institute or university. Postgraduate candidates may also apply for the MBA program. As a result, after completing PGDM, a candidate is eligible to pursue an MBA.