When you aspire for an MBA degree, one of the choices affecting the decisions in a major way is how much time you’d like to spend for it. The reasons behind it may be different for each student depending upon their ability to learn, financial condition, the urgency of placement, and the current employment situation. However, all the reasons converge and reach the cusp of that important decision.

The different hues of MBA

MBA programs have many branches. According to your interest, GMAT score and availability, you are offered different streams. In general, an MBA is a course dedicated to management topics. But internally, it varies in inculcating topics such as project management, executive programs, health management, forestry, biotechnology, or joint MBA programs like MBA/LLL (Joint Licentiate in Law),EMBA, MBA/Master of Fine Arts, Master of Social Work/MBA, MBA/Doctor of Medicine and so on.

So, instead of mulling over the options and finding which one is fit for you, evaluate how you fit in one of those programs. This is because the final decision depends upon your finance, family background and your goals. A descendent of a business tycoon may go for prestigious accredited schools like London School of Business, Stanford or Harvard. However, a middle-class working person might choose online accelerated MBA programs while working on their current jobs, reasons notwithstanding.

Most MBA programs are designed in four different ways. There’s the two-year full-time course, two-year part-time course, one-year accelerated course and three years part-time course. However, there are some on-campus and online MBA programs too.

More importantly, it is not necessary that one-year accelerated programs compromise on teaching or quality of education, nor do they lose their authenticity. These programs are tailored to suit the convenience of students. The online MBA program in Canada offer 8, 10, 12 or even 16 months programs which cost about $7700 to $15000. Within these short spans, some B-schools offer computer simulations, case studies, exercises, presentations, and tutorials. Some ‘instant’ MBA programs are called ‘accelerated’, and cost around $31,362.

So What do I Choose?

Many times, having a big pile of degrees is not considered as a qualification for the best job. It may depend on how you express the knowledge you have gained. The best B schools groom you to be competent managers who are an asset to the company. Sometimes it is worth spending two years in the right course with fair results than hastily completing fast track courses not worth their salt.

Similarly, switching careers is not an easy decision, when it could decide the course of your life. You can juggle your MBA degree and your existing job, but it requires great efficiency, concentration and persuasion.

Compared to the two-years courses, the one-year ones may have less in-plant experience to offer. Additionally, the study structure gets narrowed and specialized in the two-year courses as per your specific wing of business which is worth investigating. Often, some courses offer placement opportunities regardless of the duration, but you’d be better off verifying the authenticity. Don’t forget that there are facilities for obtaining dual degrees too.

If you are hell-bent on acquiring lucrative jobs as soon as you graduate, have no time or money to spend in long-term, you may opt for one-year MBA courses. But if you have considerable family support in terms of resources, you can choose detailed two-year programs. Perhaps, with your learning capacity and grasping power, you might complete the two-year program in one.

If you are facing a shortage of money and have demanding jobs, you can check for scholarships as well. However, be sure to double-check. Two years is a long period to waste in studies even with tuition waivers if the school is not accredited.

Some people are born managers. They need a little grooming along with a little additional knowledge to add sparkle to their careers. If you consider yourself to be one of them go, be confident in choosing a one-year course. Otherwise, the two-year period for comprehensive management education is a fair price to pay for being better off than the ones with short, temporary degrees or diplomas.