Changing face of PGDM course amid COVID-19

COVID-19 has changed the way we were functioning and has impacted the way management institutes were imparting education to PGDM course students. One thing that the PGDM course teaches is “being able to manage yourself in every situation,” and that is what institutes imparting PGDM courses have done in this unforeseen, stressful situation.

In this suddenly disruptive environment, online education has become an imperative rather than a choice for all stakeholders of the PGDM course; students, faculty, and institutes. Essential things for successfully running online classes for the PGDM course are- gaining the support of students, faculty, management, and choosing the online platform wisely. Key factors that are important while choosing an online session delivery platform for PGDM course are:

  1. Scalability
  2. Flexibility (participant should be able to attend the session from any location with essential internet, should have devise compatibility, the platform should have provisions to record sessions so that those who missed the class can watch it later)
  3. Engagement (quality of presentation, usage of multimedia)
  4. Ease of adoption (learning curve should be small)
  5. Privacy (sessions should be protected and encrypted)

Blended learning is the best option for PGDM admission, even when the current environment stabilizes. Educators must make use of instructor-led sessions along with self-paced learning for students pursuing the PGDM course. While making a start with online delivery of classes, institutions must first begin with instructor-led live sessions to create engagement as completion rate of self-paced learning is not be very high.

Some important points to be considered by the faculty of the PGDM course while delivering online classes are:

  1. Use methods of moderation
  2. The instructor must use multimedia options.
  3. After every 10 minutes, the instructor should ask PGDM students to share their thoughts (can name 2-3 students to share views) to give a feel of the physical classroom.
  4. Be normal and relaxed.

The biggest challenge in adopting an online delivery mode for institutes imparting the PGDM course is change management. After onboarding and training of faculty, to prepare them to adapt to change is very critical, management must focus on this aspect.

To begin with, institutes must focus on quality rather than quantity (it is not necessary to do all sessions online, the institute shall deliver the important ones, rest of the content students can learn themselves as in the beginning, quality is of utmost importance otherwise students would loose connect).

This generation of students pursuing the PGDM course expects to learn flexibility from their institutions; thus, online learning is going to be the future of education. The sooner we adapt to it, the better it is.

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