PGDM expands to Post Graduate Diploma in Management, the confusion starts when you see the term Diploma. Many students are of the view that it is a Diploma course and not a Degree; you are right to an extent that it is a Diploma. The main reason why postgraduate courses are named as PGDM is because when an Institute is an autonomous body (meaning it is not affiliated to any University) and conducts management courses then such Institutes cannot offer MBA degree. Even IIMs, XLRI’s doesn’t offer MBA degrees they only give PGP Diploma or PGDM since they are autonomous and independent bodies.
When an Institute secures autonomy they design their own curriculum to be taught instead of following outdated University syllabus. The reason why they chose to do is because the curriculum can be updated regularly depending on the need in Industry. Hence one can say that PGDM courses are more Industry relevant as compared to MBA courses.
Colleges which offer AICTE approved courses will also offer PGDM not MBA, for example XYZ College is affiliated to ABC University they offer MBA course affiliated to that University, the same college is offering AICTE approved course it means they are offering PGDM which is not linked to ABC University.
Typically if any PGDM is to be equivalent to MBA then the course duration should be 2 years, a 1 year PGDM will not be equal to MBA course.
A two year management degree expands to Master of Business Administration, only Universities can grant MBA degrees. It could be foreign university or Indian University.
Let us help you understand the basic difference between the two in India-:
1) Only universities can offer MBA: In India only those management institutes which are affiliated to a university can offer an MBA degree. For this reason institutes like NIMT Institute of Hospital & Pharma Management and NIMT Institute of Management can offer MBA degree, as they are affiliated with Mahamaya Technical University and Rajasthan Technical University respectively. Also IIMs, though being the best of the lot, can’t offer MBAs as they are not affiliated with any university. Institutes which are not affiliated to university are autonomous and can offer PGDM (Post Graduate Diploma in Management) degree. However, these programmes are approved by regulatory bodies such as AICTE.
2) Difference in focus of curriculum: While there are huge similarities in the curriculum of both MBA and PGDM, there are finer points of difference. While MBA focuses more on theoretical aspects of management and is more exam-oriented, PGDM has a focus on building soft skills and is industry-oriented. It prepares you for the job market.
3) Curriculum of PGDM is flexible: Since an autonomous institute does not have to follow university standards, it is free to change its curriculum according to industry standards and change in business environment. Also a PGDM gives you an industry exposure. Whereas it will take time to change the curriculum for MBAs as it is affiliated with a university and it will essentially follow the university guidelines and changing this curriculum is a very slow process.
4) MBAs are more affordable: In compared to PGDM, generally MBAs are more affordable as the fees is almost similar to university standard.
5) Difference in focus: An MBA will help in developing technical skills and business knowledge whereas a PGDM will prepare graduates for senior level positions in industry and paves the way for a strong corporate career. Hence, if you’re looking for a career in the challenging area of management, you should go for PGDM.