The Rat Race Course

This post describes the courses that I'm doing in my first term of the Post Graduate Program at IIM Kozhikode. Some of them are interesting, some less so.

Many people wonder what it is that is taught at a B-school. I myself had little idea of what I was getting myself into. The course work is by and large, interesting, at least to me.

  1. Microeconomics: By far the most interesting course I have this semester. Though I had done a couple of basic economics courses as electives at IIT Madras, the level of instruction here was such that I was gaining new insights into old concepts from the very first class. The classes kept getting more absorbing and interesting, and our analysis of game theory was simply awesome. Lately, the classes have been getting a bit technical, so I need to study a bit to get back up to speed.
  2. Managerial Accounting: After struggling to understand 'debit' and 'credit' for the first few classes, I finally realized that practice was the essential ingredient to master this course. Haven't done much of that, unfortunately, a fact that will be borne out by my Mid Term exam marks. Plan to study accounts regularly from tomorrow, but that tomorrow never seems to come.
  3. Marketing Management: Have not really got any feel for this subject whatsoever. Common sense is covered in laborious detail in the textbook making it a daunting read. Classes are no better, with me straining to spot the additional value I'm getting by studying this course. Seniors have advised to stick with it though, and that a 'Eureka' moment arrives, when all things will start fitting together and make a holistic picture. Not very hopeful of that happening any time soon though. The current part of the course is completely case based, with us being required to read a fat textbook chapter and another fat case and come ready with a detailed analysis for discussion in class. Again, I fail to see what insights I'm gaining by these discussions.
  4. Organization Behavior: A course thats interesting in principle, but becomes tedious when one gets bogged down with all the formal definitions of commonly used English words like 'value', 'attitude', 'behavior' etc. It has some really interesting concepts though, and describes very interesting psychological phenomenon. For example, you have low 'self-efficacy' if you don't think you can do a job well, and an 'external locus of control' if you believe your fate is determined by factors out of your control. There are topics on personality types, perception formation, emotions, motivation, power and conflicts, all of which we deal with regularly in our day to day life.
  5. Mangement Information System: A nothing course. Just describes the role of IT in business. t is a bit boring because lots of definitions need to be memorized. Its surprising most of the class doesn't know much about what is taught in this course, given that the majority have IT work ex. Thats possibly because we're given a broad overview of a number of technologies and focus only on the business perspective, rather than the technical.
  6. Quantitative Methods: A course that doesn't have much new to offer, considering I'm an electrical engineer. Frustrating and entertaining in equal parts.
  7. Managerial Communication: Not much here either. A very light class that discusses practical communication aspects.
  8. Social Transformation in India: The most provocative and interesting course for everyone in class. The instructor being an anti-establishment atheist communist, challenges everyone's beliefs and values. He presents a radically different view of issues and idealogies than what any of us have been exposed to. Though some people take offense due to his vocal criticism of all religions and capitalism, most appreciate him for the unique perspective he provides on ideas we had taken for granted.
Thats about it for the courses. One of the early realizations I made a few days into my program here was the relatively minor role acads play in our overall experience in a B-school. I'll post about all the non-acad work and learning that happens here in another post.

Comments

  1. Great Analysis :).... Wanted to do same but wonder how the hell you get time for writing!!

    ReplyDelete
  2. Unfortunately, my OB scores will reveal how I made the time to write this! :)

    ReplyDelete

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