I am currently working as a systems analyst with additional responsibilities in business administration. I am pursuing a masters in computer applications (MCA) degree by correspondence but would like to discontinue it and enrol in a MBA e-business programme by correspondence from an Indian university. The syllabus focuses on both IT and business administration. Would earning a degree in this improve my job opportunities in this region?
Salim, Sharjah

In the aggressive job environment it is definitely advisable to obtain another qualification. I agree that it is not always easy to do so and you too have found it difficult to complete your MCA. Therefore I am not sure how you will juggle the MBA e-business programme.

When doing your research for courses at online universities, look for modules which offer flexibility and can be completed over a period of time. Look for courses without strict time limitations. It is important that the course you pursue is recognised and accredited.

In the future, institutions and companies will increasingly be dependent on technology, creating a demand for people with professional qualifications.

A good e-business programme should cover issues confronted by managers working in an internet environment whether it be in a small/medium enterprise (SME) or a multinational company.

The IT industry continues to flourish and an additional qualification will definitely help you improve your job prospects.

My son will soon be going to grade eight. He is following the Central Board of Secondary Education (CBSE) curriculum. What are the advantages of International Baccalaureate (IB) and International General Certificate of Secondary Education (IGCSE)? How would they affect his chances of gaining a place in a school overseas after his 10th grade?
Neelu K., Dubai

All curriculums have their merits. If your son is performing well in the CBSE system then I would suggest you let him continue there.

Schools and colleges all over the world recognise most school examinations and I do not foresee any problem of gaining admissions overseas after grade 12 if the student has good grades.

If you are planning to send him before he completes grade 12, then I suggest the IGCSE as it has a formal exit after the O Levels. However, it is recommended that you let your son complete his 12 or 13 years of schooling as this gives children time to grow and develop diverse interests.

It has been found that many graduates wish they had chosen a different line of study within a few years of graduating. As college counsellors, we feel students make better choices as they mature.