India remains attractive for B-school aspirants

Foreign universities may be going the extra mile to lure Indian students abroad, but a new report reveals that Indian students who aspire for a Master in Business Administration (MBA) degree continue to find the country an attractive destination for higher studies.

March 10, 2014 11:23 IST | India Infoline News Service

Consider this. The Indian School of Business (ISB) has overtaken Harvard Business School for the first time in terms of schools/programmes to which Asian citizens sent score reports, according to the 2009 Application Trends Survey. It was conducted by the Graduate Management Admission Council (GMAC), which owns and administers the Graduate Management Admission Test (GMAT).

While the US tops the wish-list of Indian students chasing their management education dreams with 74,948 scores (56.87 per cent) sent, it’s India that follows with 21,440 scores (16.27 per cent). The UK came third with 10,909 (8.28 per cent) scores, states the report.

And the recent closure of bankrupt colleges in Australia coupled with the “bashing” of Indian students appears to have hit the country badly. The island nation received only 2,072 scores (1.57 per cent) from Indian students this year to stand seventh in the list of Top 10 countries.

The survey also states that the per cent change of score reports sent by Indian citizens to Indian schools increased by 23 per cent from testing year (TY) 2008 to TY 2009. In TY 2008, Indian citizens sent a total 127,916 score reports to 10 countries, which increased 3 per cent, or 3,870 score reports to 131,786 in 2009.

“In 2008, the US spearheaded the growth in the number of applications for full-time MBA programmes, whereas, it appears that growth in 2009 was primarily driven by programmes located in other world regions across all MBA programme types,” the report states.

The study further stated that the applications are down to half of the executive MBA programmes while the average number of applications per programme declined 25 per cent. Part-time MBA programmes experienced two distinct trends — nearly half (45 per cent) of the programmes reported an average decline of 22 per cent in applications, and 42 per cent of part-time programmes had an average increase of 40 per cent. This translated into an overall positive change of 7 per cent in part-time programme application volume, despite the fact that slightly fewer programmes reported an increase in applications than those that reported a decline.

Flexible MBA programmes continued to attract more applications — two-thirds of such programmes surveyed (66 per cent) reported an increase in application volume; the average participating programme received 14 per cent more applications in 2009 than in 2008, the report further states.

Graduate management programmes participating in the 2009 GMAC survey received nearly 230,000 completed applications from approximately 75,000 candidates. Created in 1954, GMAT is the only standardised test designed by business schools specifically for graduate business and management programmes.

The IIM Bangalore recently joined 178 leading business schools from 19 countries, which accept GMAT. In India, ISB, Great Lakes, SP Jain, MICA, TAPMI, IIM-B, among other accept the GMAT scores. The GMAT exam is offered the year-round at more than 450 test centers in over 110 countries. In testing year 2009 (July 1, 2008-June 30, 2009), a record number of 265,213 exams were administered.

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