Full-time students can finish an MBA in as little as 13 months, says Kimberley Neutens, Director, MBA and Master of Finance Programs Services at the Rotman School of Management at the University of Toronto. A part-time schedule typically lasts three years.
How soon do you want your degree?
b) It’s part of my five-year plan.
c) Whenever, really.
Choosing a full-time program means quitting your job. “You’re taking a significant risk in the payoff,” says Neutens. What’s your risk profile?
a) I bungee jump on weekends and play the stock market for fun.
b) I wear a helmet when I bike and have a diversified portfolio.
c) I’ve never even jaywalked and my entire fortune is in government bonds.
Only full-time students have time for internships and extra-curricular networking opportunities to help position them in a new field. Are you switching industries?
a) Yes. This is a whole new step for me.
b) No. This is a career progression credential.
c) Maybe. I haven’t really thought about it.
Full-time students earn no income during an MBA program, warns Neutens. What financial resources do you have?
a) My partner’s cool with me leaning on my substantial savings.
b) My young family needs me to keep bringing in a paycheque.
c) My credit rating has tanked and I’m working two jobs to make ends meet.
Part-time students spend about five hours a week in class and about 12 studying. Currently, how much time can you spare in a week?
a) What spare time?
b) How does 20 hours sound?
c) You mean I should track my time?
Mostly a) Full time
You’re driven and ready to go for it, but you also know you need the support and hours available to full-time students.
Mostly b) Part time
You may have other obligations, but that’s okay. You also have the discipline to make your MBA happen, if more slowly.
Mostly c) Not your time
You may need to gather your financial, social and personal resources first.