What are the differences between MBA and Masters in Management?

What are the differences between MBA and Masters in Management?
February 2, 2021
Share on facebook
Share on twitter
Share on linkedin

Table of Contents


A master is generally regarded as the highest of the higher studies. After attaining a Bachelors’s degree, those who want to continue studying and extending their knowledge in their particular fields often resort to attaining a second type of degree- that of a master.

Whereas Masters in Business Adminstration (MBA) is often regarded as the bread and butter of the corporate world, more and more industries around the world have been starting to understand its positive effect in the working of employees and thus have started to look for new hires who have completed this degree in their masters.

While Masters is Business Adminstration is the most common known degree for the business world, another degree is quickly gaining momentum around the workspace- Masters in Management (MiM). Often being confused with its counterpart the MBA, the MiM degree is vastly different in terms of subject requirements, pre-requisites, career options, and scope.

Who can pursue an MBA vs Masters in Management?

The best of the MBA colleges are known to be extremely competitive to get into because of their strick pre-requisites including criteria like:

  • Prior work experience
  • Academic Merits
  • Professional Awards / Accolades
  • List of internships covered

While all of these strict requirements allow for a more scrutinized entrance examination and interview process, the majority of the people who wish to pursue an MBA after their undergraduate studies are often left out because of these pre-requisites, especially that of the necessity of having work experience before starting the MBA course.

These strict guidelines for entry into an MBA course are one of the reasons its counterpart, the Masters in Management (MiM) is quickly gaining steam as being an alternative for an MBA degree. Having no specific requirement of having necessary work experience prior to starting a Masters in Management course, it allows students to complete undergraduate with more options to begin their post-graduation studies. The requirement for work experience is one of the main differentiators between Masters in Management and MBA.

However, both of these courses and the colleges that offer them realize the importance of having a good amount of work experience prior to commencing their studies. Thus, it is always preferred to have spent some time in the work-life before starting off such a specialized course. However, while the MBA accepts any duration of work experience starting from 6 months to 3-5 years, the asters in management has a cut off for work experience standing at 1 year. Post 1 year of working in the real world, Masters in Management colleges would recommend you applying to an MBA school.

Thus, the masters in management offer an option for fresh graduates to begin and launch their careers with a course that teaches them all the necessary aspects of management, whereas the MBA is often reserved for experienced professionals, who while working in their respective fields, often resort to gaining an extra education like an MBA to excel in their career.

When to apply for an MBA vs Masters in Management (MIM)?

Generally, due to the nature of their entrance requirements (like prior work experience), MBA candidates are expected to be a little more aged than their MiM applicants. MBA candidates tend to be older than Masters in Management (MiM) ones because of the additional years of work experience.

While the average of applicants for a MiM are fresh graduates, around the ages of 21-25, MBA students often fall into the higher age bracket of 28-35 years. This is simply because the students for an MBA degree come back to their colleges in order to better their chances of excelling at their existing jobs or look for more opportunities in their industry.

While top MBA schools, like the London School of Economics, entertain students with 5-6 years of work experience, making them fall above the average age of applicants, the majority of the students, around 98% generally fall within the average age brackets.

Which one to pursue – MBA vs Masters in Management (MiM)?

Which one to pursue – MBA vs Masters in Management (MiM)

Often the answer to which of the courses to pursue lies in the goals that you have set for yourself in your work life.

The MBA is generally regarded as a degree that can help people get a chance to improve their current position within their companies. In a sense, the MBA degree allows for working professionals to take a new step in their respective jobs. This new step can be in the form of new payment opportunities, new leadership roles or new avenues in terms of promotion options. Thus, an MBA is an ideal choice for people who while working need a push to extend their career opportunities.

Counter to the working professionals, every year hundreds and thousands of fresh graduates enter the market in search of jobs. As it is the market is competitive, fighting for positions with those who have master’s degrees like an MBA, or with those who have worked for some period for experience, often fresh graduates might lose on some vital career opportunities. For them, the way to go is to get a Masters in Management degree. MiM generally accepts fresh graduates with little to new work experience, and those that are just launching their career options.

Many students join the Masters in Management courses with the objective of breaking into the corporate or business worlds. More than that, it enables students to prepare themselves with specific skills desired by the job market and to place their profession on a fast track.

In the end, it’s about career start versus career growth. The Masters in Management is a way for students to increase their career entry opportunities, while the MBA, on the other hand, is a degree for career growth seekers.

Structure for MBA vs Masters in Management (MiM)

  1. The difference in Tuition Charges

One of the major differences between the two similar courses of MBA and Masters in Management (MiM) is in the way they charge their students for their studies. A way they differentiate between their tuition or fee charges is the return on investment both of these courses provide to their students.

While the more popular and older course, MBA, is generally highly regarded by most of the companies, the average salary packages within MBA courses range from 35-75 lakhs. These are high numbers and definitely fluctuate between different colleges. But in the top colleges for MBA, these are the average payouts to students.

On the other side of the coin, the MiM courses, which have only recently begun to catch steam as a faster alternative to an MBA see a smaller average payout for their students. Averaging about 25-40 lakhs per annum, these costs vary too with different colleges offering the course. However, MiM courses usually require lower investments compared to that of MBA schools.

Thus, for those families and students who face some sort of financial burden or those who do not wish to opt for hefty students loans during their education, Masters in Management is often the choice of education as it requires less investments in terms of college tuition while offering a decent payout for their students. Of course, scholarships based on academic merit exists in both of these courses and offer substantial discounts on their total costs for the caliber of their merit students.

  1. Methods of education

The main difference between the two courses of MBA and Masters in Management in terms of their teaching methodology rests on the way teachers in these courses employ ways to impart their knowledge and ready the students for the real world.

The MBA is known to be more practical-oriented and relies heavily of studying using real-world scenarios and case studies that offer students a simulated environment of their intended workspace. This ‘experiential learning’ often helps students in understanding the market and its forces in a better manner and uses their prior work experience as a bed for understanding and analyzing the industry and its effects of their respective companies.

While the MBA employs a more hands-on approach to their teaching methods, the Masters in Management courses often rely more on the theoretical aspects of education. Rather than simulating a work environment, MiM as a course better prepares students in establishing a base of understanding the market and critical thinking from a more theoretical framework compared to the experiential learning methods of MBA schools. The reason for this difference lies in the difference of the student’s ability to have gained sufficient knowledge from their past work experience, which is reserved for MBA schools. Building the base of this knowledge therefore falls on to the MiM courses and thus, they involve students in a more theoretical understanding of concepts used in the business world.

  1. Awareness and Popularity of MBA vs MiM

MBA is still one of the most popular courses for getting an education in terms of management and understanding the basics of adminstration of people. Its renowned names, coupled with the payouts and return on investments students receive after the course’s completion work hand in hand to spread a more positive connotation of the course.

Take the difference in terms of the colleges you know offering these two courses. We all are acutely aware of the top colleges in the world that offer an MBA course. Names like Stanford, Harvard, and the Wharton Business Schools are at our fingertips when we engage in a conversation about the best schools in the world. Furthermore, a more robust alumni network, more career opportunities, and associations with some of the biggest companies in the world often helps MBA cement itself as a more global and elite education course for students.

In comparison, the MIM is more regionally focused. The MiM began primarily at colleges and universities have expanded rapidly in recent years, with many universities and colleges in India beginning to offer it in English. The position matters for a MIM, it is much more known in countries in which it has already been widespread, such as Germany, France, Italy just to name a few. Many of the MiM schools are therefore situated within Europe where this course first started to take off.

But, even as Masters in Management is getting popular, numerous colleges have noticed and adopted the degree in their course offerings. Famous colleges like LBS, IE, and LSE have acknowledged MiM ‘s promise and have been delivering it as a course for the last 6-7 years. And, as more and more with these renowned colleges offering the Masters in Management, their reputation on a global platform is bound to increase.


For its rigid prerequisites of requiring some form of prior work experience, the course of MBA relies heavily on expanding on the knowledge gained by students during their work. Teachers try to link real-world occurrences with their daily teachings in an effort to link the two. With a special emphasis on the management aspect of these real-life examples, teachers employ students to understand the importance of best practices in the management of people and the company for the best and most efficient results. Allowed to choose from a variety of specific sub-courses, MBA offers students the chance to get a more thorough understanding of their area of specialization.

On the other hand, Masters in Management (MiM) concentrate on creating their students a business base, most of whom come from diverse backgrounds. A powerful conceptual knowledge base is built up through a set of basic business courses such as strategy, project management, accounting, finance, and marketing, and through team projects, leadership, teamwork, as well as other essential soft skills are cultivated which are required to manage individuals and engage stakeholders.

Compared to its counterpart the MBA, the courses of MiM focus more on building the base and providing a more holistic understanding of management concepts. Thus, MiM courses focus more on the core components rather than urging students to dive into specialization courses during their studies.

Most MiM schools have also set up internship programs or facilitated internships in order to put into action the business concepts learned:-

Course Duration

Course Duration - MBA & MIM

The small difference between MBA and MiM courses can be seen in the context of their course lengths. Owing to a more practical based approach in teaching, the exhaustive course of MBA generally takes from 1-2 years for completion. Whereas, on the other hand, MiM courses, which are intended to provide a base for students to fast track their path to their dream jobs, usually end their course in a shorter span, averaging around 10 months.

However, it is important to note that this is just an average duration. Most of the top colleges that offer both MiM and MBA generally keep both of their courses for a similar duration of time.

Job Opportunities

In the fight between MBA vs Masters in Management, there’s a strong distinction in the types of work applicants are receiving.

Although an MBA implies considerable job experience and can lay the groundwork to a higher-level position immediately, a MIM frequently leads to an entry-level position initially.

While an MBA program provokes you to move your career to another level, a MIM program makes you more versatile when you reach the job market and helps you improve your career’s initial stages.

Consequently, MBAs are commonly known as “experienced candidates” for businesses and qualify for more advanced jobs, such as leadership or management roles. MIM is suitable for entry-level roles like analysts or graduate trainees. Business, being highly qualified and fresh to the job market, then lift them up at this point to train them into potential managers and represent the ideals of the business, something that is difficult to cultivate novice professionals.

Chegg is an e-learning company which provides digital and physical textbook rentals, online tutoring, and other student services. Chegg’s online tutoring connect millions of students across the globe with thousands of tutors. Chegg India hires subject matter experts from India who answer questions of the students online through our 24*7 Chegg Study portal. So just choose your subject, become a subject matter expert, answer anytime anywhere and earn sitting at home.

Related articles