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What are postgraduate diplomas?
If you are interested in getting specialist knowledge in a particular subject and boost your career prospects without taking a Masters degree, postgraduate diploma is a useful option. Postgraduate diplomas are available in a wide range of subjects and can be studied full or part time; there are some online courses as well. Some have primarily academic contents whereas others are more application oriented and seek to address industry needs. As the name suggests, postgraduate diplomas require that one should have already completed graduation, preferably in a similar subject; some institutions also lay down additional entry requirements. They are useful both for fresh graduates who want to acquire more specialised knowledge and skills but also for in-service people who are interested in their continuing professional growth. They are usually of one year duration as compared with Masters Programme which usually takes two years and are relatively less expensive. It does not mean, however, that they are in any way less rigorous or challenging.
What modules does a postgraduate diploma involve?
The structure of courses is usually similar to the one taught for masters degree with the difference that certain selected modules are included keeping in mind the limited duration of study. The specific modules will depend on the subject in which diploma is being pursued like economics, finance, management, law, social work, fashion design and so on. Studies involve attending lecture and tutorial classes, participating in seminars, giving presentations, writing assignments and taking periodic exams. Needless to say, regularity and punctuality in studies are necessary for successfully completing the course and acquiring requisite knowledge and skills. Postgraduate students are expected to assume responsibility for their own studies whereas the academic institutions and faculty happen to be facilitators in the learning process.
What are the benefits of pursuing postgraduate diploma?
Postgraduate diplomas have certain distinct benefits as compared to master’s degree programmes. Firstly, they require lesser financial or time commitments. Secondly, they provide focus on most essential and specialised aspects of a subject that are needed for professional development. Thirdly, they help in pursuing advanced studies in the area of your interest. Fourthly, they enhance the prospects of your employability and increase your earning potential. In fact, postgraduate diplomas add great value to your graduate degree both in terms of knowledge and skills that are so necessary for getting good jobs.
How to choose a right postgraduate course and college?
The right choice of postgraduate course and college will determine the quality of education you experience and the attendant benefits you get out of it. Therefore, in your search for appropriate diplomas, you should consider factors such as course contents of various modules, ranking or reputation of the educational institution in your area of specialisation, placement record in the institution, background of the faculty, current students’ satisfaction and the fee.
How do I apply for a postgraduate diploma?
You can apply online to the institutions you are interested using their website. You can also find out the deadlines for the purpose from the websites. However, it is advisable to apply as early as possible to avoid missing out, as good institutions have limited seats in various courses which may be filled early on a first-come first-served basis. Different institutions have different admissions processes. You may be required to appear in aptitude test, attend an interview, or provide certification of work experience.
Some specialised postgraduate diplomas
Although there are numerous specialised subjects in which postgraduate diplomas can be pursued, it would be of interest for numerous students to know about three important subjects viz. economics, finance and management. They are aimed at graduates who wish to acquire and demonstrate field specific skills in economics, finance or management in the workplace or beyond; or use these diplomas as a basis for progression into postgraduate studies especially when their first degree is in an unrelated field; or else who do have a first degree in the related field that is not academically considered as being of high standard whereas the diploma awarding institution offers a more rigorous and highly accredited course.
A postgraduate diploma in economics is based on a combination of verbal reasoning and mathematical and quantitative analysis that are so essential for research and industry requirements. Microeconomics, Macroeconomics, Econometrics, Mathematical Economics, Development Economics and International Economics are some of the subjects that are studied under this diploma. A postgraduate diploma in finance aims at those graduates who are interested in further studies or career prospects in investment banking or financial markets. This diploma trains the students in a sound financial reasoning, appropriate quantitative skills and relevant institutional knowledge about financial markets. Subjects like Banking and Finance, Financial Intermediation, Corporate Finance, Financial Reporting, Investment Management and Valuation & Security Analysis generally constitute the course contents of this diploma. A postgraduate diploma in management familiarises the graduates with important functional areas of business like production, marketing, human resource and finance and enables them to think independently about business and management decisions so that they can demonstrate logical reasoning in practical life. Some important subjects that form the course contents of this diploma are Core Management Concepts, Human Resource Management, Marketing Management, Financial Management and International Management.
University of London courses as good option
If you are interested in pursuing postgraduate diploma in Economics, Finance or Management, a very good choice is Indian School of Business & Finance (ISBF), New Delhi. ISBF is an Affiliate Centre of the University of London (UOL) and offers Diploma for Graduates in Economics, Finance & Management under the academic direction of London School of Economics & Political Science (LSE). The diplomas are of of one year duration and involve rigorous theoretical foundation with appropriate practical applications. Admission to these programmes is obtained by way of an aptitude test and a round of interviews with faculty members. ISBF familiarises students with enquiry based learning that develops superb analytical and application skills so essential for lucrative educational and job opportunities both in India and abroad. ISBF has a consistent track record of its students getting attractive job offers in leading corporates as also admissions in to top international Universities for higher studies.
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