June 11, 2011


The Admissions 2011 season is in full bloom. One of the key questions that is striking the minds of many management education seekers at present is: Should I join a PGDM programme or a MBA programme? The aspirants are most often in a dilemma with respect to these two terms ‘PGDM’ and ‘MBA’, as many of them have no clear idea on the exact differences between the two.
With MBA admissions over at university B-schools like JBIMS, FMS Delhi, the PGDM admissions are also getting into the final gear at present. Although the top league PGDM institutions, such as XLRI, MDI, IMT, BIMTECH, and others have announced the final list of selected candidates, the admissions are on at other B-schools across the country.
This is the peak time to apply and gain admission to a PGDM institute or another option is to start preparations for gaining admissions to university B-schools next year for pursuing MBA.
Come, lets see, how MBA is different from PGDM.

The Differences 
How are PGDM programmes different from MBA programmes?
Explaining the differences between PGDM and MBA, Fr. PT Joseph, Director, XIMB said, “PGDM programmes are Diploma programmes, which are granted by the institutions that are recognized by Government of India through the Ministry of HRD or AICTE. The MBA programmes are offered by business schools which are mandatorily affiliated to a University, usually a technical University of their respective states.”
“The PGDM programmes are offered to students under the CAT/XAT/MAT, etc entrance examinations while the students undertaking MBA are admitted mainly through the respective State Government’s Joint Entrance Examination. PGDM Programmes are more flexible and customized while MBA programmes are University run and therefore its adaptability is difficult at short notice,” added Fr. Joseph.
PGDM is autonomous, MBA is affiliated. Curriculum for PGDM is dynamic and can change every term even. MBA curriculum has to follow University Syllabi and can change in several years.

“PGDM programmes usually provide more scope for learning as the course curriculum is customized to the needs of a specific institute’s students. It also provides flexibility in pedagogical systems, teaching-learning process, examination schedules and timely evaluation and convocations, whereas the MBA programmes are stifled due to the University hierarchy which takes longer period of time to amend its curriculum and policies and thereby curbs innovation and creativity in the academic culture,” said Fr. PT Joseph, Director, XIMB.
The PGDM institutes have the best of faculty, infrastructure and have the capacity to invite best of people from industry for mentoring, lecturing the students.”
The unique selling proposition of a PGDM programme is the structure of the curricula: it is dynamic and undergoes changes according to the needs of the industry. PGDM scores some brownie points over University MBA. PGDM Institutes are flexible in the conduction of examinations, assessments of the students pursuing their PGDM programme and in summer-internships and final placements too. Assessments or conduction of examinations or even for that matter, their management of summer projects and placements of MBA in University systems are iron clad. Therefore, PGDM is always a better alternative.

Which one is the superior
Highlighting the superior aspects of PGDM programme when compared to MBA, Fr. PT Joseph, Director, XIMB said, “PGDM programmes are superior especially due to their contemporary approach, flexible modules and industry relevance whereas the MBA programmes suffer from outdated syllabi and lack of customized approach for a particular segment of students. The PGDM programmes are dynamic in nature while MBA programmes due to their affiliation to Universities are marred by bureaucratization.
It is really difficult to say whether MBA is superior to PGDM or vice versa, since it may be possible to have innovative approach to conduct MBA programs too. However it is clear that more autonomy to the PGDM programs results in a program delivery model that results in management graduates gaining more industry acceptance.

Final decision lies with you
Giving his advice to the student aspirants Fr. PT Joseph, Director, XIMB said, “My advice to the aspirants who are intending to undertake their careers in business management is to opt for PGDM programmes from reputed institutions like the IIMs, XLRI, XIMB, MDI, FMS and similar institutions and make sure that equivalence to MBA is given to that program by AIU. They should opt for CAT, XAT, MAT as entrance examinations and ensure that they score well across all the sub-sections of the test. They need to prepare effectively and showcase their strengths at the Group Discussion and Personal Interview rounds. They need to brush up their communication skills and exhibit positive attitude and team-work.”


  1. Thanks for taking this opportunity to discuss this, I feel fervently about this and I like learning about this subject.mba college in punjab

  2. Thanks for taking this opportunity to discuss this, I feel fervently about this and I like learning about this subject.mba college in punjab

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  4. NICE BLOG!!! Business management is currently the most sought after career option in the entire globe. Thanks for sharing a valuable information about a difference between MBA and PGDM courses.
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  5. I think both are best for the career of students. It is depend on students what are they choose for their better career.

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