As a future master student, you probably ask yourself many questions every day: Which programme should I choose? Should I do a short or a long programme? Should I specialise directly or should I give myself the opportunity to discover several fields? What training would be most beneficial in the short and long term? Which path is best for me?
There are many reasons why you might choose to enroll in a business master’s degree. You could be looking to improve your skills or increase your knowledge in a certain area; or you might want to gain international exposure, interact with people from around the world, and launch a global career.
MiM vs MSc: the basics
The Master in Management takes up the fundamentals of management with a common core: it allows you to specialise in three different fields, so you can choose very different ones or stay in a specific industry sector or job function, such as finance or sustainability.
Specialised Masters & MSc (MS & MSc), on the other hand, are focused on one area and have a fixed structure, enabling students to acquire specific advanced skills and industry sector knowledge in order to progress easily and rapidly in an international market.
Students who don’t have a defined project yet and don’t wish to specialise directly but rather discover different job functions or industry sectors should lean towards the Master in Management programme.
Students with a concrete project and wishing to specialise in a particular field in management or sector should choose an MS or an MSc.
The key question: Have you defined your career objective?
Nathalie Quintin-Gezelius, in charge of International admissions at the ESCP Paris Campus, has this advice for candidates wishing to join the MIM & MS/MSc programmes of ESCP Business School.
“The ESCP jury will want to go further than your CV when meeting you for an interview and will try to gain a well-rounded sense of who you are as a candidate. As the MIM is geared towards recent graduates who just completed a Bachelor degree, they will be interested in what your career goals are but they will not necessarily expect you to have a very clear vision of your professional goals as you may still be figuring that out and the programme will precisely help you fine tune those goals with the various specialisations and electives you can choose from.
For the MS/MSc interview, as you will be applying for a specialised degree in a specific business field or industry, the jury will ask a series of questions relating to your decision to continue to postgraduate study in that field and therefore will expect a well-defined vision of the future and a well-crafted career plan.”
With that in mind, let’s take a closer look at the main differences between MiMs and MS/MScs at ESCP.
Duration and rhythm
At ESCP, the Master in Management is a 2 to 3 year course compared to 1 to 2 years for our Specialised Masters & MSc (including the internship).
Two learning approaches are possible for the Master in Management training: apprenticeship, where the student alternates between classes and work in a company or full-time. Students having chosen the full-time approach, may elect to take gap semesters to undertake valuable internships to build their CV before graduation.
On the contrary, MS & MSc’s are only offered full-time, with usually 6 to 10 months of classes, and then a work experience of minimum 4 months (internship or full-time job). The full-time intensive nature of these programmes provides students with immediate access to managerial positions, after a short but intense period of study.
You will have the opportunity to discover up to four campuses with the Master in Management programme. Students may choose their study location amongst the 6 ESCP cities and partner institutions in 41 countries worldwide.
Most MS and MScs take place on two different campuses; some are delivered on one campus only, but include a seminar with an international partner, and some of them offer both a dual-campus course delivery PLUS an international seminar.
Study locations are determined by the programme’s academic director, and based on faculty expertise. For example, the Master in Finance is taught in Paris and London because that is where the most expert faculty in the discipline, particularly in corporate finance, is located.
The Master in Management can be 100% in English. Students may also choose to take tracks in French, Spanish or German.
The MSc’s are either taught 100% in English or both in French and English depending on the programme.
Reasons to choose the MIM or an MSc
- Manuel Oberascher, a student from Austria who is currently in his 2nd year, explains why he chose the MiM programme:
“I first heard about ESCP because of the Financial Times ranking, where both the MiM and the Master in Finance are very well ranked. I chose the MiM over an MSc for several reasons. I wanted to be in as many countries as possible because since I was working during my bachelor’s, I didn’t have the opportunity to live abroad. In the MiM, I chose a variety of specialisations based on the following factors: personal interest and talents, specialisation syllabi and courses included, the faculty, and the campus/city where it was taking place.”
- Catherine Hetzel, in charge of recruitment for MS & MSc in Paris, offers this advice on the advantages of these programmes.
“Joining an MS or an MSc at ESCP will allow you to specialise within a particular sector or field of management. It’s very important to define your objectives and the environment you’re looking for, then you’ll be able to choose the right MS/MSc. Each programme prepares you for a different job or sector so you need to clearly define your professional goals and motivations, and understand the link between those and the MSc you’re applying to.”
- For Baptiste Bonnefoy, the MSc in Marketing & Communication was the right choice.
“I decided to choose an MSc instead of the MiM for several reasons. First of all, before joining ESCP, I did a 4-year course in Lyon, France, where I obtained a Bachelor in Business Administration. I then thought that it would be interesting to finish my studies with just one more year in order to obtain my master’s.
I didn’t want to take on two more years of study and wanted to turn to a focused programme with specific courses. As my goal is to work in the field of Communication, I wanted to develop my theoretical and practical skills in this specific field turned towards my professional aspirations. This is what the MSc Marketing & Communication offered me.”
Which one should you choose?
Ultimately it comes down to your career objectives:
- Do you know that a career in finance is the one for you? Then choose the MSc where you will not only gain valuable knowledge in the field, you will also benefit from the specific network of the ESCP finance faculty and alumni.
- Not sure if you would like consulting or marketing better – or maybe even sustainability? Take the MiM so you can “test the waters” with a variety of specialisations and internships – which often turn into full-time positions.
Regardless of the choice you make, as an ESCP student, you will be given the opportunity to grow your network, work on your strengths and weaknesses, and take your career to the next level.