This academic year, several thousand students will start their business studies courses in different business schools. Every business school strives to perfect its own curriculum. However, there are many shared experiences that all the students go through. Students invest adequate amounts of time, money and energy to make the most out of their business education. Therefore, it is crucial that students aptly choose the program and business school that meets their requirements. Given below are some tips for students to help choose the right ones.
Tip #1: Research both the faculty and curriculum
A good business school always attracts top-rated faculty. Experienced faculty members are recruited by quality B schools to teach future business leaders. Expert faculty members would be able to apply the theory that they teach to solve practical issues that plague the business world. Faculty members who are practitioners with adequate industry experience and the right connections are likely to bring in the best internships and perhaps good career opportunities for the students along the way.
As far as the curriculum is concerned, picking the institution is not as easy as it is for an undergraduate student. At this stage, it is important for the students to think about the companies/industries and sectors that they want to work with. This would make it easier to choose an institution based on their curriculum, electives offered and best departments. It is, therefore, important for the student to investigate about the faculty calibre, teaching methods and the diversity of the institution.
Tip #2: Check the student profile
It would do good to find out the number of students admitted to a program as this number varies widely. Before picking a business school, also check out the student profile in terms of factors such as gender distribution, cultural background, nationalities, professional experience or lack of it, etc. There is a lot that will be learned from fellow students during the course and who may perhaps be a part of your professional network in later life. It is just as vital to check out the alumni group and its worldwide spread. They can provide leads to a valuable career or start-up that the student has in mind.
Tip #3: Evaluate the programme format
There are many options for business studies that are available in the different business schools. Apart from general courses, there are specialized ones, short courses, one and two-year programmes, and others offering joint degrees. Different business schools have different core requirements for the study terms.
If a student is certain that they want to work in a single field during their entire career, it is important that they do a specialized programme. Otherwise, it is better to a broader course that will help them to make choices at a later point in time. According to experts, a two-year business degree is the one that offers adequate lessons and experience that would suit switching of careers in later life. A short programme of 15 to 18 months is apt for persons with sufficient professional experience and whose career goals are aligned with their current experience.
There are institutions that feature a Launch Pad or Business Incubator arrangements where students can design a product/service. This is for those students that want to hone their entrepreneurial skills.
Tip #4: Assess the prestige and reputation of the institution
As a measure of the prestige of the institution, it is always the achievements of the alumni that are usually checked out. The reputation of an institution may be good even if its place in the business school ranking list is not on top. Students are advised to check these out before picking a school which appeals to the mind and the suits the study requirements.
Tip #5: Check out the placement cell
It is best for students to pick out an institution with an active career placement cell that works to find the best internships (that are part of the curriculum) and the best jobs on completion of the course.
Tip #6: Make a note of the outside-classroom activities
The study in a business school is often intense and challenging, choices are overwhelming and students are competitive and intelligent. To reap the full range of benefits, however, whatever happens outside of the classroom is as important as the studies. Investigate the opportunities for extracurricular activities and social networking that the institution offers. This will help students to forge strong bonds with others and form lifelong friendships.