Is PGDM equivalent to MBA?

Management is the key factor to ensure that a business keeps running smoothly. It ensures efficiency and steady progress of any organization and hence requires immense analytical, creative, and people skills to execute. As a result, there is a high demand for management professionals in India and worldwide. When a student/working professionals ventures out to pursue their post-graduation in management, the one question that arises in their mind is whether to pursue PGDM or MBA? Are they equivalent to each other?

PGDM means Post Graduate Diploma in Management, while MBA stands for Masters in Business Administration. The confusion or the difference between these two programs only lies in the name. Any Institute that is not affiliated with the state university is eligible to offer a PGDM program but not an MBA as universities are the ones that offer degrees. So, autonomous institutes build their individual curriculum and offer Post Graduate Diploma in Management. Even if it is called a diploma, the duration, curriculum, and knowledge provided in the two courses are more or less the same. Both programs function for a span of 2 years and both of them offer specialization in similar fields.

The plus side to pursuing PGDM over the MBA is that you get to study updated programs. As independent institutes don’t come under State Universities, they can update the curriculum as per the present need of the day. Whereas, universities take time to adapt as they are much larger deeply rooted in the system. It is also said that PGDM programs, being up power with the current industry standards, are more industry-driven whereas MBA programs are more theoretical.

One has to keep in mind though, for higher studies like P.h.D., one has to make sure to pursue PGDM from institutes that have an Association of Indian Universities (AIU) certificate. Otherwise, after completing your PGDM from a non-AIU certified institute, one cannot apply for higher studies without a post-graduate degree.

When it comes to commercial standards, however, PGDM and MBA are both equal options in terms of career expansion and bagging excellent packages.

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