It will not be far from truth to call business schools an epitome of modern education. Usage of cutting edge technology, plenty of highly competitive schools and students, experimental subjects and specializations, and an interesting variety of curriculum, all contribute to this. Although these factors contribute to make management education a rich field to experiment and learn, it also makes it increasingly challenging for the students to choose the right business school. The students must factor in a lot of things to choose a business school that is aligned to their interest and can support their aspirations. To be fair, most of top business schools in India such as IIMs, XLRI, IMT Ghaziabad, SP Jain, Symbiosis, ICFAI Business School etc. do a more than adequate job of accommodating the students’ aspirations while maintaining great standards of education.
To understand what makes a business school stand out from the crowd or in other words “special”, they need to understand the various aspects of the business school and what all things to look for when choosing a business school. All these things come together and must be weighed to understand the effect they have on the quality of B School experience. Here are a few things that can transform a B school from good to great.
- Curriculum: Curriculum is something which can vary a lot among business schools, due to the flexibility that most business schools can exercise. The academic experience revolves around it and a well-balanced curriculum is a big requirement for having a robust MBA, PGDM or PGPM course. There is also an increased need to have the curriculum calibrated to the industry requirements for the students to develop industry relevant skills and knowledge. The curriculum should also be flexible to accommodate associated learning as well as allow some breathing space for the extra-curricular activities. An integral part of curriculum is also the methodology applied by the business school to approach the learning based on the curriculum. A great business school will find more interactive and engaging methods to approach learning the curriculum instead of the boring lecture style approach. A good example of using interactive learning in classroom is the case based learning method of ICFAI Business School.
- Infrastructure: The infrastructure of the business school can be a pivotal point in facilitating learning. Although the infrastructure is not the direct part of the academics, it does affect the student experience a lot. The infrastructure can help create an environment in the business school campus that is conducive to learning. This is done through creating top notch facilities with collaboration of information technology to create spaces such as interactive classrooms, fully functional computer laboratories, a well-equipped library, spacious and clean classrooms, and comfortable living space at the hostels. The infrastructure also includes the shared spaces for extra-curricular activities such as auditorium for dramas and skits, courts and grounds for games, and greenery at the campus through well maintained lawns and gardens.
- Student Community: The student community is an important part of business school experience to consider. While this is not one of the things that someone can simply check from the outside, a fair idea is usually given about this on the website of the business schools. The future classmates as well as the culture of the business school can make your time in the business school amazing or awful. A few things to look for in this regard are the frequency of the student events, the type of discussions or behaviors around the campus, the attitude of the fellow students etc.
- Location: The location of the business school is also an important consideration to be given while determining if this is the right school for you or not. While it is important that the campus of the business school should be situated in an area which is open, spacious and free from noise, it is also desirable to be closer to the business hubs. As you would be spending the next few years on the campus, you can use this opportunity to make powerful networks and links with the local business community. These are only possible if the campuses are located around the business hubs of the country. This also enables a lot of interaction with visiting faculties, industry experts and business firms which may result in easier internships or even support in placements.
- Reputation: Reputation of a business school is not only related to the ranking of the school but it also extends to ‘how is the standing of that school in the business world’. The reputation of the school is a must check since the name of this business school would be associated with your name for a long time. To check about the reputation of the business school, detailed research needs to be carried out either firsthand or through internet. Independent sources must agree with the claims that the school makes about the standards.
Choosing a business school for yourself can be a daunting task but with careful and objective approach, it can be made easier. The business school experience can add some of the best years in a student’s life, but managing the expectations must be done beforehand to avoid any regrets later.