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5 myths on MBA admissions and reality check

Amidst various MBA options, there also exist some myths that hover an aspirants mind as they plan their MBA. What are those myths? What is the reality behind them? Do the facts support them?

MBA Admissions

Master of Business Administration (MBA) is one of the most sought after professional course for fresh graduates and executive who aspire to acquire and sharpen their professional skills and go up the corporate ladder. This is well reflected as you scan the professional qualification of most of the highly positioned corporate managers and CXOs.

More than 3500 B-schools in India cater to this aspiration amongst today’s young generation, offering different management programmes. Amidst various MBA options, there also exist some myths that hover an aspirants mind as they plan their MBA.

What are those myths? What is the reality behind them? Do the facts support them?

1. Value of MBA on decline or Post-MBA job scenario is not good

As the world economy is consistently facing tough challenges for last 4-5 years, there is a perception that MBA education might not yield a desired career and a proper Return on Investment (ROI) in the not-so-buoyant economic environment.

But on the contrary, despite the economic slowdown, the number of test takers for each management entrance exam in 2013 has increased as compared to the last year. The placement records at various B schools also indicate that MBA is still valued in the market and the growing economy needs more and more skilled managers.

In terms of ROI, the B-school placement report 2013 indicates an upward movement in the median salary of most of the B-schools.

Sample this: Average annual package in 2012: XLRI – Rs. 15.5 lakh, SPJIMR -Rs. 15.2 lakh, IIFT – Rs. 10.2 lakh , XIMB – Rs. 10.83 lakh and TAPMI – Rs. 8 lakh.
Average annual package in 2013: XLRI – Rs. 16.2 lakh, SPJIMR – 16.13 lakh, IIFT – 12.40 lakh, XIMB – 11.81 lakh , TAPMI – Rs. 8.65 lakh.
The salary data suggest that the MBA graduates are still valued in the industry.

While the placement scenario of many IIMs is not as rosy as last year but this is mainly due to increase in batch size of various IIMs and sudden increase in the number of IIM graduates thanks to new IIMs.

2.CAT is a must for MBA admissions

As an MBA aspirant plan for MBA, the first thing that haunts them is Common Admission Test (CAT).  There is a perception that Common Admission Test (CAT) is the only management entrance test that will fetch them admission into a good B school.

The fact is that there are half a dozen other management entrance tests that facilitate your admission to some of the best B-schools across India. As per the latest Supreme Court verdict, PGDM institutions can admit students who have taken any of the six MBA entrance exams, namely CAT, MAT, XAT, ATMA CMAT and GMAT. AICTE’s CMAT is accepted by most of the AICTE approved Institutes / Departments of Universities.

Apart from these prominent Management entrance tests, there are Private Universities like Alliance University, KIIT University, Symbiosis International University, UPES, etc which conduct their own entrance exams and also accepts scores of other management entrance tests.

Though it’s true that some of the top B-schools like IIMs, FMS -Delhi, MDI- Gurgaon, DMS IIT- Delhi only accept CAT score as the first step of selection procedure, a range of other top B schools don’t limit themselves only to CAT score. For example, top B-schools like SPJIMR, IMT – Ghaziabad, TAPMI – Manipal, BIMTECH – Greater Noida, accept XAT as well. Some of these B-schools accept other scores also. Another top B-school like JBIMS accepts CMAT scores also. Similarly, almost all the B-schools except IIMs have alternative ways of entry to their campus.

3. High fee for MBA

MBA is generally considered a high-ticket professional course. The fee structure of some of the B-schools also backs this fact. Fee also becomes a major factor as many aspirants do not get options like education loans and scholarships.

But in an environment where MBA education is becoming highly competitive, aspirants can look into a number of options available on affordable MBA.

Although while IIM & some other top B school like MDI Gurgaon, IMT Ghaziabad, NMIMS Mumbai charge around 12-15 lakhs, there are many more B schools who offer value for money and charge fee around Rs. 5 lakh. For example, BULMIM – Delhi, LBSIM, M S Ramaiah, Jaipuria Institute of Management, etc.

There are numerous other management institutes who provide management education at a very low fee. The fee structure at some of the top B-schools like FMS Delhi, JBIMS Mumbai, DMS IIT Delhi, NITIE, K J Somaiya Mumbai, etc is around Rs. 2-3 lakh only.

4. Entrance exam is necessary for MBA admissions

Many aspirants think that a written exam is a pre-requisite to get into a B-school.

It might sound bizarre, but some B-schools offer admissions only on the basis of academic background and personal interview. This way, these B-schools fill their seats with desired mix of batch.

So how do they pass through AICTE, HRD Ministry norms and guidelines which clearly state that a candidate must have taken at least one Management aptitude test to qualify for admission?

These B-schools, however, asks the aspirants to take an entrance exam at a nearest possible opportunity and submit the scores to the admission committee as a formality.  The most favorable entrance test in such a scenario is Management Aptitude Test (MAT), which is conducted 4 times a year.

5.Admissions closes by March-April

As the admission process for most of the B-schools open in the month August- September, MBA aspirants think that the admissions would close by the month of March-April.

While still waiting for their final graduation results, some of the aspirants even drop the plan of pursuing MBA/PGDM course just because they think that the management institute must have closed down their admission process by March-April.

But as a matter of fact most of the B-schools keep their admission open till May-June.

The reason for this could be many: less number of students applications, urge to lure top students from various other entrance exams, search for the right mix of candidates or even to have a plan B in case students enrolled didn’t joined or deposited their 1st installment of fees (results in cancellation of admission).

An additional CMAT in May for the admission year 2013-14, also brings a major relief to those who have decided on their MBA admissions late.  Top B school like JBIMS has to wait for May CMAT results to complete their admission deadline.

There are many other B schools across region i.e. East, West, North and South that keep their admission open without specified last date. For example, Myra School of Business, IFIM, ISB&M Bangalore, M S Ramaiah Institute of Management, Alliance School of Business, IMI & BIMTECH Bhubaneswar, ITM Business School, MITSOB, Universal Business School, etc.

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