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How to Choose Between the Best Business Schools

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Returning to education is an opportunity to develop your skills in order to revitalise your career or take it in a new direction. But how do you choose between the best business schools to find the course which provides the optimal fit with your professional aspirations? From training methods and course content to reputation and qualification quality, read on to discover the five key criteria to consider before making your decision.

1/ Course type: distance learning or face-to-face?

First of all, ask yourself which format is best adapted to your situation — a 100% online course? Face-to-face classes? Or “blended learning”, which combines both? Prestigious educational bodies like EDHEC offer all of these various options. Distance learning provides you with greater flexibility in managing your schedule, allowing you the option to continue working alongside your studies and to familiarise yourself with digitalised ways of working.

EDHEC Online offers introductory webinars to provide more information about your options. If you are leaning towards face-to-face learning, a campus’s location, equipment, and atmosphere are all factors for consideration — make use of open days to visit business schools of interest.

2/ Reputation, ranking, and accreditations

Your business school’s reputation can be what sets you apart from other candidates in the eyes of recruiters. A school’s reputation is built on its history, its values, and its placement in international rankings such as those of The Economist or the Financial Times. Rankings take into consideration a variety of criteria, from cost effectiveness and student diversity to how long it takes students to find a position after graduating from a course.

EDHEC is frequently ranked among the best business schools and notably features in the Financial Times’ international Top 10 for Executive Education. You can also look to the accreditations AMBA, EQUIS, and AACSB for proof of international recognition for your target schools — EDHEC is among the 1% of schools worldwide which can boast all three accreditations.

3/ Specialities, programmes, and teaching

Whether it is digital marketing, project management, finance, or management, select a business school with an academic focus which corresponds to your profile and needs, and which, above all, provides teaching which is anchored in the realities of professional life. Every element of the course must further your goals, from the available specialisations and personalisation to the career support on offer.

To be useful, your chosen course must include development of “soft skills”, which can be achieved by means of case studies, group work, or coaching. To this end, EDHEC courses, including distance learning, incorporate significant individual support in order to help you to develop your personal and professional skills.

4/ Corporate links

A school’s links with the business world are critical when it comes to the career benefits of a face-to-face or 100% online course — check to see whether your chosen school has solid business connections, if it organises events where you can meet businesses and recruiters, and whether its students have the opportunity to get involved in consulting projects, like those run as part of EDHEC Online programmes.

In 2019, EDHEC came top in Trophées AGIRES rankings, which recognise quality and innovation in school-business relations.

5/ Ways for you to build a network

Returning to education also provides the opportunity to enhance your professional network beyond the sphere of your company. Take a look at student profiles — they constitute a network which will be a contributing factor in your professional future. Will your course involve working on projects as a team and joining groups alongside international learners?

Check, too, whether the network of former students is extensive and active, like EDHEC’s Alumni network, and whether there are options for joining specialised clubs or participating in events for meeting stakeholders in your sector of interest.

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