PGDM  v/s MBA v/s MIM v/s MSBA v/s MIF – Understanding the difference!

MBA was the only master’s degree to be considered prestigious in the world. As a result of the progress and advancement, such claims can be discarded now. Consequently, many valuable master’s degrees are available now in our country and around the globe. Most importantly, these degrees are at par with the standards of an MBA degree. On top of that, you are still qualified enough as an MBA to receive a good salary. Therefore, if you do not want to do an MBA, you can very well choose other courses that serve the same purpose. 

In short, we bring you details and information on choosing PGDM v/s MBA v/s MIM v/s MSBA v/s MIF. Let’s look at them in-depth to start with.

pgdm vs mba vs mim


  • PGDM – PGDM courses mainly have an industrial orientation and they focus more on skill-based on market requirements. Consequently, the PGDM syllabus undergoes a substantial change according to the industry trends and requirements every year. Above all, it is highly in demand.
  • MBA – Most importantly, the core structure of an MBA always emphasizes a more  ‘hands-on approach’. Consequently, the whole curriculum is dominated by case studies & real-world examples of business issues.
  • MIM – Firstly, the focus here is in more theoretical aspects of management. Consequently, critical thinking is encouraged. As a result, the course is overloaded with team projects which nurture skills and talents like public speaking, team building, and leadership.
  • MSBA – The Master of Science in Business Administration (MSBA) is a more specialized degree than an MBA. The Business Analytics course focuses on an area specific to their needs or ambitions, with the goal of becoming an expert in the data field.
  • MIF – MIF is a much more specialized degree and as result, it offers its students with in-depth knowledge of finance and various areas concerning finance, such as investment banking, asset management, and corporate finance.


  • PGDM – The syllabus of PGDM is quite dynamic and is updated as per the needs and trends of the industry.
  • MBA – The MBA Syllabus is prepared by the universities and it gets updated less frequently.
  • MIM – The MIM degree shares a considerable amount of syllabus with the MBA structure. MBA and MIM are almost 40-60% similar.
  • MSBA – The MSBA degree syllabus combines data science, computer science, statistics, business intelligence, and information theory—all of which are focused on commercial applications.
  • MIF – MIF’s core syllabus is full of covering different aspects of financing from investments to stock markets.


Course Eligibility and Entrance Process


  • PGDM – This degree is valid and equivalent to a Postgraduate Degree and to an MBA from any other University.
  • MBA – MBA is a valid Post Graduate Degree and often considered the most top one in the industry.
  • MIM – MIM also is a valid Post Graduate Degree providing equal opportunities as an MBA degree.
  • MSBA – MSBA courses are much more personalized than MBAs and the curriculum ranges greatly. The MSBA degree sessions can include classes similar to those found while earning a Master of Economics, Master of Finance, Master of Accountancy, Master of Science in Marketing and Master of Science in Management and others.
  • MIF – MIF is a valid Post Graduate Degree with a shining specialization in Finance.


Fee Structure


  • PGDM – In your PGDM, in whatever field you have had the specialization, you can look forward to working as an Assistant Manager in that field.
  • MBA – If you have earned an MBA degree, it directly implies significant work experience and can pave your way to a higher-level position like Lateral management which can include Senior Manager, General Manager, Vice President, etc.
  • MIM – With Mims, the candidates are entitled to start at an entry-level position such as analysts or graduate program trainees. Having a MIM degree states that you are highly skilled and at the same time, new to the job market. Hence companies pick them up at this stage to groom them into future managers.
  • MSBA – MSBA graduates will find careers in banking, education, real estate, healthcare, and finance right after completing their degrees. As a result, both the MBA and the MSBA graduates are valuable assets to employers.
  • MIF – MiF graduates start their careers in financial services as an analyst and from there get promoted to job positions like associate, associate vice-president, vice-president, senior vice-president, and so on, with increasing levels of responsibility.


Salary in India
Salary in Europe


  • PGDM – What companies recruit you deeply depends upon the institution. Surprisingly, most of the PGDM institutions have better placement records than MBA institutions.
  • MBA – MBA with its strong and rich background of being the most prestigious masters degree has proven its ability to get students placed in top-level companies
  • MIM – Good companies but entry-level positions. Even with medium-sized companies, the job profiles stay the same. 
  • MSBA – MSBA graduates have great opportunities worldwide. All the companies ranging from multinational to SMEs are looking for MSBA graduates.
  • MIF – Employers value the deep and specialist financial knowledge of a MiF degree, hence top finance companies are looking to hire you.


  • PGDM – Since the tuition fee for PGDM is not that much but the starting salary is good. Hence the ROI is good and can be achieved sustainably.
  • MBA – This comes with no surprise that  MBA continues to be the most sought-after degree in the world. With an MBA or an MSBA, salaries are often competitive and usually range in the six-figures. Hence the ROI is sustainable.
  • MIM – When it comes to MIM, the ROI is great because the average salary packages range is great since the beginning itself.
  • MSBA – As mentioned above, in case of an MBA or an MSBA, salaries are often competitive and usually range in the six-figures. Generally, MSBA graduates achieve a return on financial investment around the two-year mark.
  • MIF – Like MIM, the ROI in MIF also seems to be great. As a result, average salaries are pretty good.


1London Business SchoolHarvard Business SchoolUniversity of St. GallenSloan Business SchoolHEC Paris
2University of PennsylvaniaINSEADHEC ParisUniversity of TexasESCP Europe
3Harvard Business SchoolHECEssec Business SchoolMarshall School of BusinessEDHEC
4Insead Featured business schoolStanford Graduate school of BusinessCEMS (Global Alliance in Management Education)University of Southern CaliforniaSKEMA
5Stanford Graduate School of BusinessLondon Business SchoolRotterdam School of ManagementThe University of RochesterSt. Gallen
6Hong Kong UST Business SchoolWharton School of UPennErasmus UniversityCarlson School of ManagementESSEC
7Columbia Business SchoolMIT Sloan School of ManagementLondon Business SchoolUniversity of MinnesotaMIT Sloan
8IE Business School Featured business schoolColumbia Business SchoolESCPSouthern Methodist UniversityBocconi
9Iese Business School Featured business schoolSaïd Business SchoolWHU BeisheimMichigan State University (Eli Broad)Imperial
10MIT Sloan School of ManagementIE Business SchoolUniversità BocconiHeinz CollegeSAIF


  • PGDM – PGDM is more suited for the candidates who are interested in the corporate world or want to be an entrepreneur.
  • MBA – MBA is most eligible for candidates who want to climb up the management chain and seek top-level management job opportunities.
  • MIM – MIMs are suitable for entrepreneurship and job roles.
  • MSBA – With an MSBA, you become suitable for successful handling of all aspects of business, and as an entrepreneur.
  • MIF – The MiF is more suitable for those who are absolutely certain they want to start or continue working in the financial sector. If you’re a finance professional looking to widen your skill base or a recent graduate eager to continue your education, the MIF degree can provide the knowledge you need to get to enhance your career in finance.

To conclude, these are the deciding parameters that will help you make a sound decision as to which master’s degree you should pursue. For example, choose a degree where most of these parameter boxes are ticked for you. In short, there are several options to choose from only if you are willing to pursue. Finally, good luck to your future endeavours! 

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