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Management Courses: the degree dilemma
Management Courses: First degrees - great but, not for everyone?
This article focuses on management courses and management development, for mature students who are usually also in full-time work, so this is written against that background.
My comments here are not meant to be deliberately controversial, but are designed to alert managers and aspiring managers, of all ages, to the fact that a first degree is a good option, but not the only option, yes for some, perhaps for some, but definitely no for others.
As with most careers, a first degree BA or BSc is very valuable, and if you are leaving school and moving on to university, great, choose an appropriate course (business & management related if that is the field you plan to enter), work hard, and make sure you obtain as good a degree as possible and enjoy it, you’re only there once!
However, if you are about to, or have recently left high school, and university is not for you, or if you are in your early twenties and did not go to university there are many attractive options.
One excellent one, available in the UK and in dozens of other countries, is the Higher National Certificate, followed by the Higher National Diploma, known as the HNC and HND.
These are accredited by the internationally recognised Edexcel BTEC, the UK’s most prestigious and largest accreditation body.
You can take an HNC/D with a wide range of options, focusing on, for example, management, finance, hr, marketing, and many others.
An HNC or, better, an HND, is accepted by every employer, and international ones too, as evidence that you are a well qualified, well-informed, knowledgeable person, who is serious about business and management.
If a degree is still needed, which is the case in a few professions, students gaining a high mark HND can find many universities in the UK and USA and Australasia, which will accept them on to the Year 3, final year, of a business & management degree.
But for many young managers and specialists, the HND, mixed in with good experience, will be enough to ensure a solid, high quality start to their careers.
The same applies to a range of foundation, introductory level courses and qualifications, suitable for the younger, 18 to 23 year old, who wishes to make a positive start to their careers, but have not taken the university route.
Examples of these are the Certificate in Management, the NVQs in Management at level 3 and 4, and professional specialist qualifications such as the Certificate in Quality and the Certificate in Project Management.
Most employers, small, medium, large, or gigantic, will be happy to employ you if you can show one of these qualifications, as well of course, showing that you are hard working and a good team member.
If you are aiming to be a young entrepreneur, and hate the thought of working for someone else,these qualifications are for you too.
They all help you to learn about the basics, the foundation stones, on which business and management are built.
About the Author: CJ Williams is a tutor and management consultant currently working with Brighton School of Business and Management in the UK, specialising in Business and Management courses taught via distance learning.
CJ has had a wide and varied career including working as an Executive Manager in the Hospitality Industry, a Management and Business consultant in the Middle East, Europe and Asia and a Management Lecturer in the UK and China.
He currently focuses on helping individuals and teams to develop personally and professionally.
The writer, CJ Williams, can be contacted at firstname.lastname@example.org or via www.brightonsbm.com