We often hear that an MBA is a ticket to professional success and financial prosperity. What is the magic in this two-year course? This is also a postgraduate programme like any other. Perhaps, the only differentiating part is that it trains students to understand the p’s and q’s of administering various business processes in organisations.

Consequently, students develop the potential to affect the outcome of business processes directly. That is the reason companies engage themselves in a continual search of skilled Bschool graduates. Like each postgraduate discipline teaches different academic subjects and has diverse pre-requisites, each MBA course curriculum trains to handle the nitty-gritty of the associated business processes. These comprise of results of admission processes like written tests, essay writing, group exercises and personal interviews, major academic score cutoffs like marks obtained and in some cases, fixed graduation disciplines.

Some of the courses that specify are postgraduate diploma in business analytics offered jointly by IIM Calcutta, IIT Kharagpur and ISI Kolkata; MBA in Telecommunication Systems Management offered by IIT Delhi; Postgraduate diploma in industrial management and postgraduate diploma in industrial safety and environmental management offered by NITIE; MBA in Infrastructure Management offered by SCMHRD and all MBA courses offered by IIT Bombay, IIT Kharagpur, IIT Roorkee and IIT Kanpur. In most of these, the requirement is a Bachelor’s of engineering or technology or a Master’s degree, except MBA by IIT Delhi that allows threeyear science graduates or CA/ICWAs to apply and PGDIM and PGDSEM by NITIE and MBA by SCMHRD that allow only engineers to apply.

However, one must realise that the pre-requisites are based on the course structures of these individual courses and it’s agreed that students from certain backgrounds alone can appreciate and grasp the concepts better. One must also appreciate that defying popular belief, the general MBA course offered by IIT Delhi, courses offered by IIT Madras and all other courses by SCMHRD do not specify any such graduation criteria.

Moreover, almost all the courses offered by all other colleges, including all the first-grade ones, have no such restrictions either. Therefore, the graduation restrictions for non-engineers are minuscule when compared with the openings.

The first step of admission to almost every B-school in India is a written test. Some of the MBA written tests are Common Admission Test by the IIMs, Xavier Aptitude Test conducted by XLRI on behalf of Xavier Association of Management Institutes, Narsee Monjee Admission Test, Symbiosis National Aptitude, Indian Institute of Foreign Trade, Common Management Admission Test, and Management Aptitude Test. Almost all of these tests comprise of questions from verbal ability, quantitative aptitude, data interpretation, data sufficiency, logical reasoning and general awareness. The reason behind asking questions from these subject areas is to test graduates of various disciplines on a similar platform.

Therefore, it is obvious that no such test will ask questions such that a particular section of the test-taking students have an edge over others. Many arts, humanities and commerce graduates tend to believe that these tests favour the engineers and science graduates because they are in a better position to handle quantitative aptitude questions. This is a myth. First, according to the Oxford dictionary of English, the definition of quantitative is relating to, measuring, or measured by the quantity of something rather than its quality. Quantitative aptitude, therefore, is one’s aptitude for measuring the quantities of things and not for solving high-level mathematical problems. The questions asked in this section might be parts of concepts taught under mathematics in high school but everyone treads that path.

No questions from subject areas like calculus or engineering mathematics, which might shift the odds in favour of engineering or science graduates, are asked. Secondly, every B-school desires a balanced class composition.

A batch of students from diverse backgrounds not just improves the quality of projects and discussions but also boosts the overall output and the placement scenario. As a result, no B-school takes admission through a test that prefers one group of students to others. Furthermore, many design their admission processes to foster rich diversity among their students. The admission processes are major learning experiences, which develop aspirants to handle the more rigorous curricula efficiently and prepare a strong base for their management education. For both non-engineers and engineers, they test the sincerity of their preparation and not their knowledge of high-level mathematics, English or analyses of data.

Admission depends on smart work, regularity of efforts and proper guidance from experts and not on one’s background. Therefore, it’s imperative that one should stop worrying about non-engineering background rather prepare for the admission processes. The writer is verbal faculty member, TIME, Kolkata We often hear that an MBA is a ticket to professional success and financial prosperity. What is the magic in this two-year course? This is also a postgraduate programme like any other.

Perhaps, the only differentiating part is that it trains students to understand the p’s and q’s of administering various business processes in organisations. Consequently, students develop the potential to affect the outcome of business processes directly. That is the reason companies engage themselves in a continual search of skilled Bschool graduates.

Like each postgraduate discipline teaches different academic subjects and has diverse pre-requisites, each MBA course curriculum trains to handle the nitty-gritty of the associated business processes. These comprise of results of admission processes like written tests, essay writing, group exercises and personal interviews, major academic score cutoffs like marks obtained and in some cases, fixed graduation disciplines.

Some of the courses that specify are postgraduate diploma in business analytics offered jointly by IIM Calcutta, IIT Kharagpur and ISI Kolkata; MBA in Telecommunication Systems Management offered by IIT Delhi; Postgraduate diploma in industrial management and postgraduate diploma in industrial safety and environmental management offered by NITIE; MBA in Infrastructure Management offered by SCMHRD and all MBA courses offered by IIT Bombay, IIT Kharagpur, IIT Roorkee and IIT Kanpur.

In most of these, the requirement is a Bachelor’s of engineering or technology or a Master’s degree, except MBA by IIT Delhi that allows threeyear science graduates or CA/ICWAs to apply and PGDIM and PGDSEM by NITIE and MBA by SCMHRD that allow only engineers to apply.

However, one must realise that the pre-requisites are based on the course structures of these individual courses and it’s agreed that students from certain backgrounds alone can appreciate and grasp the concepts better. One must also appreciate that defying popular belief, the general MBA course offered by IIT Delhi, courses offered by IIT Madras and all other courses by SCMHRD do not specify any such graduation criteria. Moreover, almost all the courses offered by all other colleges, including all the first-grade ones, have no such restrictions either. Therefore, the graduation restrictions for non-engineers are minuscule when compared with the openings. The first step of admission to almost every B-school in India is a written test.

Some of the MBA written tests are Common Admission Test by the IIMs, Xavier Aptitude Test conducted by XLRI on behalf of Xavier Association of Management Institutes, Narsee Monjee Admission Test, Symbiosis National Aptitude, Indian Institute of Foreign Trade, Common Management Admission Test, and Management Aptitude Test.

Almost all of these tests comprise of questions from verbal ability, quantitative aptitude, data interpretation, data sufficiency, logical reasoning and general awareness. The reason behind asking questions from these subject areas is to test graduates of various disciplines on a similar platform. Therefore, it is obvious that no such test will ask questions such that a particular section of the test-taking students have an edge over others.

Many arts, humanities and commerce graduates tend to believe that these tests favour the engineers and science graduates because they are in a better position to handle quantitative aptitude questions. This is a myth. First, according to the Oxford dictionary of English, the definition of quantitative is relating to, measuring, or measured by the quantity of something rather than its quality. Quantitative aptitude, therefore, is one’s aptitude for measuring the quantities of things and not for solving high-level mathematical problems.

The questions asked in this section might be parts of concepts taught under mathematics in high school but everyone treads that path. No questions from subject areas like calculus or engineering mathematics, which might shift the odds in favour of engineering or science graduates, are asked. Secondly, every B-school desires a balanced class composition.

A batch of students from diverse backgrounds not just improves the quality of projects and discussions but also boosts the overall output and the placement scenario. As a result, no B-school takes admission through a test that prefers one group of students to others. Furthermore, many design their admission processes to foster rich diversity among their students.

The admission processes are major learning experiences, which develop aspirants to handle the more rigorous curricula efficiently and prepare a strong base for their management education. For both non-engineers and engineers, they test the sincerity of their preparation and not their knowledge of high-level mathematics, English or analyses of data.

Admission depends on smart work, regularity of efforts and proper guidance from experts and not on one’s background. Therefore, it’s imperative that one should stop worrying about non-engineering background rather prepare for the admission processes.

(The writer is verbal faculty member, TIME, Kolkata)