How to know if a particular MBA programme is right for youChen Wan Lim
Amongst the common reason why people get an MBA programme is to increase their knowledge base, increase their qualifications, a transition to a managerial role and to basically, better themselves.
While all accredited MBA courses in Malaysia are able to help candidates achieve those goals up to a certain extent, the choice of institution offering the MBA course is also an important factor to consider as different business schools offer different programme structures.
These are some points to consider whether a particular MBA programme is right for you.
Different schools have different types of application processes. Some have both online and offline applications, whereas some only receive online applications. Also, certain schools and certain programmes require potential candidates to attend interviews.
MBA degree requirements
The general rule of thumb is that candidates must possess at least an undergraduate degree/diploma to be qualified for an MBA course. However, since most MBA candidates have a substantial amount of working experience under their belt, exceptions are commonly given.
One such case is by open universities where matured students with vast working experience but with no formal tertiary education are allowed to apply. The main aim of open universities is to equip the general workforce with a formal tertiary education.
Duration of courses
Course durations also differ between universities and courses. Some universities only offer full-time MBA courses whereas some offer part-time courses.
Some can afford to be out of work for two years but some have to continue working and as such, choosing a course which offers flexible programmes that fit your schedule is important.
However, if you intend to take a break from your career while pursuing an MBA, then a full-time course might be more suited to you.
Enrolling in an MBA programme requires a decent amount of financial planning. Consult a university admissions consultant to properly gauge all the fees and other expenses involved.
For those who are planning to do a full-time degree and foregoing a stable income, other costs become important factors to consider as well, such as traveling distance, accommodation, subsistence etc.
MBA courses are typically taken by working executives on a part-time basis, in Malaysia at least. Flexibility is an important plus point to have when you have work datelines to meet or when you have family emergencies or perhaps just getting stuck in a traffic jam.
Have a chat with the course director before you enroll and ask if the university provides replacement classes, the percentage of compulsory attendance to complete and also the entire course structure inclusive of the amount of coursework and workload.
Alumni track record
In addition to the course in itself, candidates might want to get in touch with the alumni to see where most graduates end up.
Knowing this would give you a sense of industrial connections the university and its alumni have. Also, it would be somewhat easier for you to connect with your fellow alumni to get acquainted with industry connections which might land you a job at a place you want.
There are many different types of MBA programmes specializing in different areas. Depending on your career goals, some MBA programme will be more suitable for you compared to others.
Get in touch with the course directors to find out if the MBA programme will be aligned with your goals. Also, engage an external postgraduate admissions consultant for impartial advice on which university and course are best suited for you.