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IGNOU MBA Eligibility, Admission, OpenMAT (and more)

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IGNOU MBA Distance Learning

IGNOU MBA Eligibility, Syllabus, Fee Structure and Entrance Exam Details

IGNOU Distance Education MBA Details
Course offered MBA, PGDM etc.
Stream HR, Marketing etc.
Duration 2.5 years
Fee of course (INR) 37,800
Accreditation Yes, by UGC
Entrance exam Yes, OPENMAT
Work ex required 3 years
IGNOU Eligibility for MBA Graduate with 50%
Admission Help Click here

Quick Reference links


Indira Gandhi National Open University (IGNOU) School of Management Studies (SOMS) provides students across the world access to its distance learning MBA education program. The Correspondence MBA school of IGNOU became operational for admission in the year 1987.

At that time, it used to award just one pilot program – i.e. Diploma in distance learning  MBA education. It has now evolved into offering more than 10 programs comprising of 50 courses or more for students.

Not only does it cater to MBA distance education in India, but also in Africa. In terms of scale, IGNOU Distance MBA has a vast presence and one of the highest number of students across the globe. It is a Central University that has its own charm compared to colleges like Symbiosis Distance MBA and other famous private institutions.

Based on our research about Distance MBA, we have found that students are confused about a bunch of things – should I go for government college or private college? Will this provide value to my career? Is the money spent justified?

These questions are completely valid and we try to answer a few of these on our website. Your money is hard earned, and you should make sure that you spend it wisely. If your final target is to go for a government job – then go for IGNOU. No two ways about it!

Courses at IGNOU Distance MBA

  • Master’s Degree
    • Master of Business Administration (MBA)
    • Master of Business Administration (Banking and Finance)
  • Doctoral Degree
    • Doctor of Philosophy in Management (Ph.D. (M))
  • PG and Advance Diploma
    • Postgraduate Diploma in Management (PGDIM)
    • Postgraduate Diploma in Financial Management (PGDFM)
    • Postgraduate Diploma in Human Resource Management (PGDHRM)
    • Postgraduate Diploma in Operations Management (PGDOM)
    • Postgraduate Diploma in Marketing Management (PGDMM)
    • Post Graduate Diploma in Financial Markets Practice (PGDFMP)
    • Postgraduate Diploma in Teaching and Research in Management (PGDTRM)
  • Diploma
    • Diploma in Management (DIM)
  • Certificate
    • Certificate in Entrepreneurship (CIE)
    • Certificate in NGO Management (CNM)

Note that even though a lot of postgraduate programs are being offered by IGNOU, only one course is actually a real MBA degree. Students can opt for other IGNOU courses which are in the postgraduate domain; however, one should note that technically, these are not equivalent to the normal MBA.

Details of Course

  • Duration: 2.5 years
  • The maximum duration to complete the course: 8 years
  • Medium: English
  • Specializations offered
    • Financial Management
    • Marketing Management
    • Human Resource Management
    • Operations Management
    • Financial Markets Practice

Eligibility Criteria

    • Graduation in any discipline with 50% marks for general category and 45% for the reserved category with 3 years managerial/supervisory/professional experience OR
    • Professional Degree with 50% marks in Engineering/ Medicine/ Chartered Accountancy (ICAI)/ Cost and Works Accountancy(ICWAI)/ Chartered Secretaryship (ICSI), and Law
    • Clear OPENMAT conducted by IGNOU
    • There is no age bar


There are 21 courses to complete this program. Each course fees is INR 1,800. Hence, the total fees to pursue the IGNOU MBA course sums up to INR 37,800. Please do note that IGNOU happens to be one of the cheapest colleges for distance learning MBA in India. This is despite the fee increase over the past few years.

IGNOU Accreditation Status

IGNOU is accredited by the central government. All India Council for Technical Education (AICTE) recognises IGNOU MBA program. In addition, Distance Education Council (DEC) allows IGNOU to operate as an accreditor of distance education programs in India. All in all, it ensures that your education is in safe hands if you are planning to pursue correspondence MBA from IGNOU.

This means that you can apply for government jobs that require a management degree without any hassle.

Pertinent Information Regarding IGNOU course

The MBA course consists of 21 courses in total. These courses combine PGDIM, specialization courses, compulsory courses, and project courses.

It is very important that students should only opt for the courses which are available during that particular year. The courses within each keep changing every year and it may lead to complications at a later stage.

OPENMAT Preparation

OPENMAT is the test conducted by IGNOU before you can start with your MBA education. It’s not that tough a paper but you may want to prepare for it sincerely. Here are the details:

Openmat IGNOU Prep Details
Recommended Books One book you can refer to
Total Questions 200
Total Time 180 Minutes
Test Form Download Link Click Here
Consist of 4 Sections Mathematics or Quant – 50 questions
English – 50 questions
Reasoning – 70 questions
General awareness – 30 questions
Previous Year Paper Link Click here

How to Apply

For students who want to make it to the IGNOU MBA, there is an entrance test which needs to be cleared first. If a student has taken any national level aptitude test for MBA such as CAT, then he might be exempted based on a certain level of marks.

These may be determined each year depending on the proclivity of the IGNOU authorities.

Free Admission Help Available


You could find the prospectus of the IGNOU MBA here

Students’ Testimonials

“I started my education journey with IGNOU in 2016. I am very happy to share my experience and pleasure here. Today the university changed its operation completely to an online procedure. That helps the students to get an update and apply for new courses etc. One of the main advantages of this type of educational system providing simple and less complex study materials to students. Anyway, this is the best university that I will suggest for you for distance education 100+ course.” renjithct

“IGNOU stands for Indira Gandhi National Open University. The head office is situated in Delhi. This is one of the oldest and reputed universities in India. It provides lots of distance education courses for different degrees. They also provide the online facilities for their students regarding admission, syllabus, entrance exam, etc.

They have a good managing administration. They offer quality study, innovative and need-based programs at different levels. They have regional centres all over India to conduct exams and to provide the best quality study. They also arranged the Extracurricular programs for their students. They also maintained a database for Alumni Network. If anybody looking for a distance education then IGNOU is the best one.No doubt about it.” ssanjaya525

Credit: Mouthshut 

Frequently Asked Questions

Q1: Should I prefer IGNOU MBA Course over the regular MBA Program?

Ans: It totally depends on your situation. If you believe that it would be difficult for you to follow a fixed schedule of MBA, then a Distance MBA program would be a good option for you as it provides you great flexibility.

Q2: What is the duration of the IGNOU MBA Program?

Ans: Its normal duration in 2 years. The maximum duration to complete this program is 5 years.

Q3: What is the placement scenario at IGNOU?

Ans: In order to be a part of the IGNOU MBA, you should pass an entrance test. If a student has taken any national level aptitude test for MBA such as CAT, then he might be exempted based on a certain level of marks.

Q4: What is the eligibility criteria of the IGNOU  Program?

Ans: You should have a professional graduation degree with 50% marks for general category and 45% for the reserved category with 3 years managerial/supervisory/professional experience.

Besides that, you should clear OPENMAT conducted by IGNOU.

Q5: What is the maximum age limit for this MBA program?

Ans: There is no age bar for the IGNOU Distance Program. Everyone can enrol in this program without any age restrictions.

Q6: Can OpenMAT be taken online?

Ans: To the best of our knowledge, no. If this changes in the future, we’ll update our students.

Q7: OpenMAT fee structure?

Ans: Yes, you have to pay a nominal fee for taking the exam

Q9: How many times does IGNOU conduct examinations for distance MBA in a year?

Ans: Two times (June and December)

Q10: Can international candidates apply for distance MBA at the institution?

Ans: Yes, the program is open to international students

Q11: Are there age limitations for distance MBA?

Ans: No, there is no maximum age requirement

Q12: Is IGNOU recognised?

Ans: Yes, IGNOU is a central university that was established through an Act of Parliament in 1985. It is approved by AICTE and AIU.

Q13: What are the downsides of studying at IGNOU? 

This isn’t directly tied to IGNOU, but overall correspondence via a government college in general. Our friends have reported that IGNOU processes like form filling, dates etc. can be very tough to navigate. Mostly, the support provided by the local centers is not that great.

It’s basically run like a government agency, and that can cause issues to students.

Also, you need to submit assignments by post and the gradings are tough! Students specifically struggle in the quantitative section of IGNOU and find it the most difficult of all the papers.

Q14: How does IGNOU compare to Symbiosis and IMT and other private colleges? 

In terms of fee, it’s great! Mostly cheaper.

In terms of service and other basic information services, it’s way behind.

Also, clearing distance MBA from a place like IGNOU is no joke. The papers are tough and require hard work. If you flunk, you’ll have to reappear in these exams i.e. your back is carried forward. And unless you clear all the mandatory exams, you will not get your degree.

Other private colleges, tend to be a bit easier and getting a degree is not as hard.  But then, they are expensive and the accreditation is always under doubt.

Contact Details

  • School of Management Studies,
  • Indira Gandhi National Open University,

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Image Credit – David

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