The Emerging Trends in Management Education in India
Dr. K.S. Srinivasa Rao | the education magazine

Management education has taken different shapes in India. During 1985-90, due to privatization, management education was offered by several institutions and it was like a mushroom growth. The regulatory bodies were allotted to grow it like an unorganized sector. But after 2010, slowly the regulatory bodies started controlling the management institutions, mainly by using Information Technology (IT).

Basically, management education is divided into three categories: (a) Management colleges, where only undergraduate (UG) Management programs are offered like BBA/ BBM and teaching is the main job for the faculty (b) Management institutions, where Master’s program are offered like MBA/ PGDM exclusively or in addition to UG programs and along with teaching, faculty works on research and (c) Business schools or shortly, ‘B-Schools’ offers exclusively the Master’s program like MBA/ PGDM exclusively and faculty works on teaching, research, training, academic administration and consultancy. B-Schools, by its nomenclature, should be autonomous and self-sustained.

Initially, MBA programs started in university departments and later in their affiliated colleges with an objective as an additional degree with just knowledge transfer.  Later, with the advent of IIMs, PGDMs became popular, which imparted knowledge through practical learning using ‘Case Studies’. B-Schools that practicing IIM Model are very successful, and IIMs are conducting training Programs on Case Study Pedagogy and facilitating other management institutions to imitate the IIM Model in training the students to learn practical application of management. The greatness of IIMs is the faculty members do research in developing the cases and then they teach those cases in the class, whereas in other management institutions, faculty downloads the cases and use.

B-Schools started working on ‘Entrepreneurship’, but it took some time to create awareness in the mindsets of Indian students about entrepreneurship. Students joining B-Schools with the only motto of getting jobs and hence placement became the pivotal element. Slowly, B-Schools used ‘Placement as their marketing strategy to attract candidates. Majority of the B-Schools, even though they offer entrepreneurship as a program, very few Institutions like EDI, Ahmedabad able to withstand on this concept.  But, with the recent boom in start-ups, B-Schools are focusing on entrepreneur development programs once again. B-Schools are now able to attract budding Entrepreneurs and nurturing their ideas through the ‘Incubation Centers’.

B-Schools in India are facing problem in getting qualified and experienced Faculty. In the process of training students to industry requirements, B-Schools are able to support students for good placements.  The Ph.D. in management program offered by universities and FPMs offered by B-Schools are giving partial support to ‘Education Industry’ to get faculty in management field. On the other hand, all Institutions are going for quality norms like NAAC, NBA etc. where the process includes lot of documentation with data/information from various departments. Some of the Management of B-Schools are able to train their faculty for academic administrative works and offering better positions like Dean or Director in various verticals like admissions, student services, academics, and placements etc.

With the reforms that are taking place at higher education with a focus on technical and management education through clear-cut policies from the government, B-Schools are slowly moving from fixed specializations to Choice-based Credit System (CBCS) and this seems to be a good direction for management education as (a) uniformity in curriculum across country (b) freedom to the students to choose their courses without intervention by the Institute (c) easy for any credit transfer with any international institute during any student exchange program (d) student will be getting what direction his career has to forward by selecting his course credits semester wise (e) student gets advantage during placements as recruiting companies are looking all-rounder profiles not just specialization in one vertical.

All business strategies are now connected with “Big Data” and “Business Analytics” became a common factor as a new tool of understanding businesses. B-Schools are offering the analytics courses at different levels in the form of (a) certificate courses – long term and short term; (b) PGDM in analytics – as a full pledged 2-year Master’s program. Analytics have taken into all verticals /specializations (a) HR Analytics (b) Financial Analytics and (c) Retail Analytics.  Majority of the B-Schools are offering analytics, even though they may not be having resources, but as on a third party service, they are offering training programs in analytics.  The current job market for MBAs is good and expecting bright future with the support of analytics.

Government of India has initiated “Digital India” and slowly all sectors are on digital platform.  Education sector has also taken its role in such an initiate and exploring the possibility of technology-based learning in the classrooms.  Flipped classrooms are becoming popular compared to the traditional classrooms. This is an instructional strategy where material will be given through online in addition to the lecture sessions. This also includes the home works /assignments/tests /projects which students can do after the lecture sessions through online. Now slowly educational sector started using MOOCs (Massive Open Online Course) in which online education for unlimited participation through web,  In MOOCs, in addition to traditional lecture sessions, one can find video lectures, readings, Problem Sets, interactive sessions through forums, quizzes and assignments.  One has to register and it is a free of cost for learning, but if you want a certificate for your learning, then only you have to make payment.  IIM-B has started giving training to faculty of different Institutions in how to integrate MOOCs in management education. AICTE has indicated that faculty should go for refresher courses on MOOCs in different topics and asking them to register, as the future of education is mainly ‘Digital’.

About the Author

Dr. K.S. Srinivasa Rao has got his M.Sc., M.Phil., and Ph.D. in Statistics from Andhra University-Visakhapatnam. Presently, he is serving as Director General, IBMR Business School, Hubli, Karnataka. He has more than 25 years of rich experience in Teaching, Research, Administration, Training and Consultancy. Dr. Rao is very much interested to bring reforms in B-Schools in terms of Curriculum, Pedagogy, and Assessment that give benefit to the students in terms of placement offers.

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