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By Srishti Oberoi

Full-Time MBA V/s Part-Time MBA: Difference, Pros & Cons

16th March, 2019

Getting an MBA nowadays is very common to advance in a career, either after completing graduation or working for a few years. The delivery of management education is evolving over the years with online MBA, executive MBA, and 1 year MBA programs coming into the picture. The management aspirants must note that apart from the regular full-time management program, all these other formats of MBA fall under part-time management programs only. With the availability of so many options or routes of pursuing a management course, it is obvious for the management aspirants to get confused. Full-time MBA or part-time MBA, both have their merits and demerits, which we are listing in this post.

The candidates who are planning to do an MBA but are juggling with full-time MBA vs. part-time MBA and which one to pick must go read through this article to get clarity.

Full-time MBA vs. Part-time MBA

Choosing an MBA channel can be gruelling as well as confusing. But, this decision is imperative, for it will lay the foundation of your career in management. Let’s begin with understanding the full-time regular MBA or PGDM course.

Full-time MBA

A regular or full-time MBA is the most widely available two-year management program. Almost every business school across the world offer a full-time MBA. The first year is dedicated to introducing the students to a core set of business fundamentals involving accounting, operations, finance, and marketing. While the second year focusses on MBA specializations which the students choose based on their interest and career aspirations.

Who should go for a full-time MBA?

  1. Change your career path altogether
  2. Seeking career advancement
  3. Scale-up job designation and salary
  4. Pre-requisite for career goal accomplishment

Duration & Course Structure of a Full-Time MBA

Most full-time MBA programs can be completed in two years, but some one-year accelerated programs are available to full-time students.

The school and its curriculum largely determine the structure of full-time MBA programs.

The first year is usually spent learning management and business basics, and the second year is spent on electives and specializations.

Merits of Full-time MBA

  • Regular classroom learning and interaction with mentors & classmates
  • Opportunity to interact with industry experts and personalities
  • Great Placements
  • Internships to acquire industry exposure
  • Opportunities to build a network
  • Intense, dedicated career services support
  • Access to clubs and extracurriculars
  • Vast scholarships offered to saddle cost of MBA
  • Study abroad opportunities

Limitations of Full-time MBA

  • High Course Fee
  • Carry a risk that the investment may not always pay off
  • Carry huge academic workload
  • Regular time investment
  • Quit job to focus on studies

Part-time MBA

Part-time MBA is designed for working professionals who wish to pursue higher education. It is a popular course among executives, who do not wish to take a break from their jobs and are ready to squeeze in time for their education. The full-time MBA or a regular program no doubt holds the prestigious tag, corporate acceptance, and other benefits but a part-time MBA is still opted by majority of management aspirants due to its flexibility of time, place, less cost, accreditation by reputed University and more.

Who should go for part-time MBA?

  • Wish to work and learn simultaneously
  • Have limited time and money to invest
  • Climb up the career ladder
  • Earn a better salary

Duration & Course Structure of a Part-Time MBA

The duration of Part-time MBA programs depends on the pace of an individual student

Each student creates the structure of their part-time MBA program. The structure tends to be relatively fluid, as you can assemble the program according to your own needsd.

Part-time programs have a broad time frame for estimated graduation: depending on how an individual student structures their curriculum.

Merits of Part-time MBA

  • Less expensive program
  • High chances of Company sponsoring the program
  • Flexibility in terms of time and course fee payment
  • No need to relocate or quit the job
  • Continue to earn income while you learn
  • Can apply what you learn immediately to your job
  • More experienced classmates to learn from

Limitations of Part-time MBA

  • May lose focus at work or in class
  • Rigorous schedule for 2 to 3 years
  • No internships
  • No placements
  • No or limited opportunity to build a network
  • Little or no opportunity for extracurriculars which help you develop or enhance soft skills
  • Limited job opportunities
  • May require employer consent

Full-time MBA vs. Part-time MBA – A Final Word

Both programs have their pros and cons. We hope the points mentioned herein will help you make an informed decision regarding a full-time MBA or part-time MBA and which one to pick.

By Srishti Oberoi

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