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Master of Business Administration (MBA) or Post Graduate Diploma in Management (PGDM)

When it comes to management studies MBA or Master of Business Administration is considered as the pinnacle. And, PGDM or Post Graduate Diploma in Management is generally considered as an alternative to an MBA degree/certificate in India. Many students who have the goal of taking admission in one of the best MBA colleges instead enrol in a top PGDM institute, as most IIMs (Indian Institute of Management), as well as top private management colleges, provide PGDM/PGPM (Post Graduate Program in Management) instead of MBA.

However, it is recommended that a PGDM program should not be considered equal or substitute to MBA as most students do. For the reason that an MBA degree focuses on the theoretical approach of management studies, whereas PGDM is basically an industry oriented course. Various management stalwarts would argue that opting for a PGDM program instead of pursuing MBA can be beneficial for the students as it helps you prepare for the professional world. But it is always suggested to make a well-informed decision and choose a program that best suits your interests. Read on…


As you can make out from the names of the courses MBA is a postgraduate of master’s degree that is awarded after the completion of the 2-year program. On the other hand, PGDM is also a 2-year program, but not a degree. Instead, it’s a diploma program that you can pursue after completing your bachelor’s degree or graduate studies. This is because, as per the norms of the University Grants Commission of India (UGC), all colleges and institutes that are affiliated to a government university (state/central) can offer an MBA degree. Whereas, the autonomous universities/private Business Schools that are not affiliated to any university in India can offer only the PGDM program.

Which is Better?

While most autonomous business schools change their syllabus as per the changes in the current professional demands and market scenario. However, even top MBA colleges that are affiliated to government universities do not have this freedom and have to stick to the same curriculum until the university changes it. And when compared to PGDM, the MBA program is more academic and theoretical in nature. This can be a major hurdle in the management world as the professional business arena is very dynamic and prone to unexpected changes and transformations. And this is where the PGDM program excels, as along with the classroom learning, management students get good exposure to the current professional world through case studies, live projects, industry internship, and workshops, as well as interactions with top business leaders.

However, the global job industry treats MBA and PGDM graduates in the same manner, as the companies are more concerned about the student’s professional skill rather than his/her degree. In fact, your placement depends more on the reputation and brand value of the MBA/PGDM college/institute rather than the name of the degree. Hence it is advisable that one should carefully choose his/her business school/management college before choosing to pursue an MBA or PGDM.

Considering that most of the top management colleges and institutions in India (including IIMs) provide only PGDM program and not an MBA, it would be astute to get enrolled in a top Post Graduate Diploma in Management business school. However, if you are looking to obtain a full-fledged postgraduate degree, then going for Master of Business Administration for a top management college or university would be the best choice for you. Well, if you are still unable to make your mind and need some guidance, the Study in India portal can be of great aid.