Monday, July 25, 2005

Distance(d) education

Just how effective and value adding is distance learning? Does it do justice to a full time course? There are a whole host of institutions that offer distance learning facilities for a whole host of courses ranging from the mundane to the exotic. IGNOU is one. ICFAI is another. Direcway offers one of the newer type of distance learning courses. But, really, how much value do such courses add?

Most of us, have at some time or other contemplated addition of yet another qualification to our resume. The typical pattern is that a person graduates, takes up a job, hangs around for a year or so, feels he is not getting anywhere.

Now there are two routes. Try for a real MBA (which is the option for a large chunk of students), but that means losing two years of salary, which for many is not worth the return that an MBA can supposedly bring. The other option is to enrol in one of these distance type courses. (Somewhere along the way, the computer course bug could also bite, but thats for another day). The Cost Accountancy, CFA, CS are perhaps among the most preferred.

The "I want one more qualification on my resume to progress in life" bug bites and afflicts most of the one year olds. ( I too was a victim as have been many of my friends). So, they make a beeline to these courses. Initial excitement is at its peak. Tons of reading material arrive by post or courier. There is some more investment in books (logic: If I invest money, I will be motivated to do it). Some months go on, there is hardly any time and what time is left cannot be spent on mugging one more book. Slowly, but surely, the course enthusiasm dies a slow death. (The enrollment to drop out ratio of these courses would make interesting reading and many of them knowing this collect fees upfront). Many engineers do a financial courses, commerce students do technical courses, but does it add value to the work they do? Rarely. How much value a distance MBA can add? Shorn of the interactions with bright minds, which is the best part of an MBA, it reduces the MBA to mugging a of few concepts. Distance MCA and post graduations are no different. In a market like India, where the number of graduates runs into millions, post graduates a little lesser than that, its a craze to add yet another qualification to add "bite" to the resume or in some cases make the person more "attractive" in the "marriage market".

But the bug bites many individuals and they make a beeline to these institutes (some of them like ICWAI are quite reputed for course content and the market value of courses is quite high for initial recruitment), generation after generation. Some of them go on to complete them and add a line in their CVs, which beyond a small shaft of recognition during recruitment (or in cases of courses which go hand in hand), doesnt really matter during working life.

6 comments:

ambarishonline said...

MBA from ICFAI
The MBA opens doors and provides the modern manager with the tools needed to identify new business opportunities and threats. The MBA is a postgraduate and post-experience degree for managers with several years' work experience. It provides skills and knowledge relevant for managers in both public and private sectors. The MBA widens horizons and provides an overview of business. The MBA benefits managers who need to think and work strategically. A focus on decision-making and analysis and the opportunity to share ideas and experiences with others will prepare you for a senior managerial role.
MBAs are often seeking a more general managerial role in their current industry. The MBA provides a portfolio of managerial tools and techniques as well as the 'softer' skills needed to succeed as a manager. Entrepreneurial spirit, dedication, commitment and professionalism are words often attributed to MBA graduates. In investment banking and consultancy, the MBA is often a 'must-have'. In other areas it simply opens new doors and creates new opportunities. MBA doesn't offer an automatic passport to promotion, it will help you maximise your chances of career success.

Why get an MBA degree?
To climb the top management ladder
A Satisfying and Challenging career
To enhance skills and advance in current field
A better pay package.
To compete globally
Build upon professional network.
To get a competitive edge.
To understand the business strategies, Practices and tactics.
To become a leader and not a follower.
To have power and authority.
To mobilize your thoughts in the organization and achieve more.
To handle bigger responsibilities.
Why ICFAI?
1. ICFAI ranks first among the private universities.
2. ICFAI ranks 9th as per the outlook India survey 2005 among the Indian B-Schools.
3. ICFAI has foreign accreditations and collaborations.
4. The course materials are recognized by RBI (Reserve bank of India).
5. ICFAI is recognized by the University Grants Commission (UGC) recently
6. ICFAI has centres all over India and exams can be given any where in India and even from abroad.
7. E-learning, communications and user convenience
8. ICFAI has experience of more than 12 years in providing MBA programs
9. Good Industry interface
10. Frequent updation of the syllabus based on the industry requirements
11. Placement scheme for executive mode programs with a minimum assured salary of Rs 21000 per month
12. Study materials along with workbooks and CDs which are user friendly and have modules of self evaluation
13. Offers MBA in 9 different streams even in distance learning mode
14. The study material is the same for all distance learning, Part-time and Full time MBA programs and hence the university does not mention the mode of learning in the certificate.
15. The exams are conducted on quarterly basis, in order to reduce the burden of office goers
16. Only two papers a quarter, this is optional. You can also appear for 4 papers
17. The degree awarded after the completion of the program is not a post graduate diploma but an MBA degree from ICFAI University.
18. The degree is provided in three successive periods as you give your exams
19. Diploma in Business Administration after completing 6 papers
20. Advanced diploma in business administration after completing the next 8 papers
21. MBA degree after completing the last 8 papers
22. This scheme adds value to your CV as you give your papers as above and you don’t have to wait for the entire two years of the program
23. Fees can be paid as lump sum or in 18 monthly instalments.


For further details contact:-
Ambarish Kumar Verma
Student service Officer
ICFAI Business School
Bangalore
Mobile:- (0) 9986574638

vijayakumar said...

Hi,

Nice to read your blog, I am working for a IT company, basically I'm a Diplomo holder (full time) then i worked in a company as a IT system admin, during this time I did B.Sc (comp.scie) and then MCA through part time. Now,I am unable to get a job in any of MNCs, even though I have 5 years of experience as no one accept both the degrees as they are not full-time courses.

regards
vijay

vijayscsa@gmail.com

pradeep said...

hi

there r lot many contradictions about
distance education. Well i feel that no degree, let it be mca mba regular distance whatever, it just cant guarantee u a job. These should be seen as a ticket for sitting in a interview. Once there it all depends upon u. Moreover today for proving urself and giving some thrust to ur credentials and ability , u can try some cerifications.


pradeep

Anonymous said...

no qualification unless it is an iim iit kind of qualification will get you a ticket to an interview except for your first and perhaps second job. And then again just a degree will take you nowhere.

People who read resumes are sharp enough to figure out 'real experience'

Shweta said...

get latest cfa info at
http://www.kprofessionals.com/phorum/read.php?8,60

Brent said...

many MBA programs will allow you to earn joint degrees, so you can combine business administration training with training in another field, like law, health, or even social work.