With the advent of Industrialization, Globalization, and Entrepreneurship, the demand for management education has risen in recent years. To fulfill the needs of the candidates, various colleges and universities are offering several programs worldwide. However, Indian students often find themselves faced with the choice between two such courses, namely MBA and PGDM. Aspirants are often ambiguous about the difference in the labels as well as the content of these programs. This leads to a dilemma regarding the course one should opt for, and why. Here’s your handy guide for understanding the difference between the PGDM and MBA courses in India.

Understanding the Terminology

Though both the programs fulfill the needs of the candidates looking for managerial, administrative and leadership positions, some technical differences exist between the two. MBA, which stands for Masters in Business Administration, is a post-graduate degree program whereas PGDM which stands for Post Graduate Diploma in Management is a diploma program. Both the programs are of two years duration, though the difference could be in terms of semester-based, trimester based or yearly based. Most of the programs are of 4 semesters. However, as far as recognition is concerned, both the programs are recognized equally when it comes to qualification level. There is one – year PGDBA program also offered by some institutions, but it is not equivalent to MBA or PGDM. Therefore, a candidate must check the equivalence and its recognition by concerned authorities or industry before taking admission.

Affiliation and Accreditation

The MBA program which leads to a degree is offered by a University or an Institution that is affiliated to a University recognized by University Grants Commission (UGC). For example, Poddar Management and Technical Campus is affiliated to Rajasthan Technical University, Kota and offers a two-year, dual specialization MBA degree.

On the other hand, PGDM is a Diploma program offered by a business school or Autonomous institutions which are approved by All India Council for Technical Education (AICTE). The IIMs, XLRI, SPJain, etc. are institutions which are approved by AICTE and offer PGDM under their own banner.


Though there are many similarities in the curriculum of both the programs, there are slight differences persist too. The MBA program emphasizes more on theoretical aspects and is more exam-oriented, whereas PGDM is industry-oriented and prepares a candidate for personality development.

The curriculum of MBA is generally updated after a particular time interval and needs rigorous paperwork and approvals from various committees of University. On the other hand, the syllabus of PGDM is updated as per industry demand and is more flexible. Hence, it can be updated as and when required without much paperwork.

Program Approach

As mentioned earlier that MBA program is theoretic, the classroom sessions are held more from books and reading materials. However, in PGDM the concepts are covered through real-life industrial case studies, writing of term papers, problem-solving approach, use of ICT and industrial training.

In the MBA, a student’s learning is evaluated based on examinations held from time to time as per the University’s Academic Calendar. However, in PGDM, a continuous evaluation approach is followed where a student’s evaluation is done based on class presentations, term-papers writing, participation in case discussions, internships and application-based examinations.


In comparison to PGDM, MBA programs are more affordable as the fee charged is as per University’s Standards. PGDM program fee is as per the goodwill of business school and its ability to place its students in the industry. While finalizing an institution, you may calculate Return on Investment.

I hope this guide will help you in deciding which course needs to be selected. However, a student also must consider constraints like fees, security in terms of recognition of degree, convenience, placement track record and other facilities that may affect your decision.

Poddar Management and Technical Campus (PMTC), Jaipur which is approved by AICTE and affiliated to RTU, Kota is offering 2 years, dual specialization MBA program since 2011. In order to make its students corporate ready, the b-school has introduced various value-added programs to enhance problem-solving skills and other soft skills. It is offering Pearson’s English-Speaking course with certification for its first-year students so that their communication skills can be improved. It also provides two times, one-week business training on the latest industrial practices, during the tenure of two years MBA, at one of the top b-schools of India. Apart from these training, it also provides hands-on training in Digital Marketing, Data Analytics, Advanced Excel, Content Writing and various Software used by industries like SPSS, Ms Project, CRM, etc.

The students are also provided the benefit of industrial visits, on-the-job training in industries, case discussions in classrooms, and conducts various events organized by students to enhance their event management, team building, report writing, and coordination skills. The training and placement cell of PMTC conducts various training programs to enhance aptitude, CV making, and interview skills so that the students can be prepared for campus placements.

The entrepreneurship cell under the banner of Institution’s Innovation Council (IIC) of MHRD conducts different programs for budding entrepreneurs where the aspiring entrepreneurs are trained in setting up start-ups. Various competitions like b-plan are organized to select great ideas that can be converted into a profitable business.

For more details on PMTC, you may click here.



Dr. Avnish Vijay

(Ph.D., NET, PGDM, ME, BE)