An MBA is one degree that is vigorously pursued by both fresh graduates and seasoned professionals. It would be prudent to enrol in an MBA program after gaining considerable work experience. As you have a much deeper understanding of business environments and models, you can truly make the most of what the program offers to enhance your career.Unfortunately, the misleading terminology used for various MBA programs is a cause for much confusion among candidates. For instance, the one year MBA program offered by various Indian institutes is commonly mistaken for an Executive MBA (EMBA). This idea is reinforced by certain similarities in the content and eligibility norms.

Here’s how to distinguish between these two formats of MBA.

1. Who is it for?

Traditional MBA programs offered by Indian universities and institutes do not require the candidates to have any work experience. On the contrary, the one year MBA program stipulates a mandate of at least 5 years of work experience, for a candidate to be eligible. It is therefore regarded as an MBA program for executives and experienced professionals.While the Executive MBA in India is also for professionals, it often requires considerable experience and seniority in a body of work. These courses are specifically designed for working individuals who want to pursue an MBA degree.

2. Duration of the Program

As opposed to a conventional MBA program, the MBA for executives in a rigorous one year program. The course adopts a more practical, reality-based approach as candidates are already acquainted with theoretical aspects.On the other hand, as EMBA candidates are employed in full-time jobs, their schedules tend to be more flexible and classes are often held over weekends. An Executive MBA is, therefore, a two-year program.

3. Eligibility criteria

Apart from work experience, there are several other criteria for enrolment into a one year MBA program. Applicants are shortlisted and evaluated on the basis of GMAT scores, personal interviews, and soft skills. However, the acceptance criteria for a full time Executive MBA are much more relaxed. Although the intake of students is limited, the requirement of GMAT scores is also lower.Both programs have their unique strengths as well as certain inherent limitations, but they allow candidates to enhance their professional potential. Opt for an EMBA if you wish to work and learn simultaneously.

If you prefer a full-time learning experience however, a one year MBA is the better option for you.

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