The Imperial Institute of Higher Education (IIHE) was established in 1996 as a private tertiary education institution. IIHE is directly associated with University of Wales to offer Bachelors degree programmes in Business Management and in Software Engineering. IIHE also offers the Masters in Business Administration (MBA) from the University of Wales.
B.Sc. degree in business management is a three year degree programme, which has been offered at the institute since 1996. The B.Sc. honours degree in Software Engineering is a four year degree programme which has been offered since 2005. The subject matter is delivered via a semester basis with three semesters per year and four subjects offered each semester.
The B.Sc. honours in Business Management offers students the opportunity to go through theoretical management concepts whilst gaining an insight into aspects such as business, accounting, human resource etc, which make up a modern business environment.
Application of theory in real life situations is encouraged and valued. This is achieved through two main paths, one such module is Real Life Problem Solving (RLPS) where the students are given real business problems or issues faced by companies. Premier blue chip companies get the students involved in this program. The company identifies a problem area and final year students work in a group setting to solve the problem. The problem solving techniques are assessed by the company itself, while throughout this process the students would be guided by a lecturer as well to ensure that the students are able to make the connections between the theoretical learning and its practical application in a modern business environment.
“All RLPS presentations made by our students have been highly acclaimed by the participating companies” said Mr. Harshana Perera the Chief Operations Officer of IIHE.
Another module that encourages real-life application is the research based dissertation, which is a requirement for students to undertake in the final year. The students are expected to focus on an area that is of interest to them. “The students put in a lot of effort and time into this and they come up with a unique product, which they can be proud of” said Mr. Perera. Through this dissertation students are encouraged to gather data and information and study them with the theoretical backing they have received in lectures. Thus students are encouraged to follow scientific research methods, where they have access to all the literature. A unique factor is that students can be up-to-date with their knowledge by accessing the e-library facility of the University of Wales.
The RLPS and the dissertation are focused on during the third and final year of study. During this time students are also taught special skills such as research methodology. The final two semesters prepare students for the real-world by providing more opportunities to apply their theoretical knowledge to practical work situations.
The Bachelors degree in Software Engineering is four years in duration with one year of industrial placement and lectures delivered through a scheme of four modules per semester. Students spend the first two years in a lecture-based environment and the third year in industrial placement where students are able to gain exposure to working in a formal environment and they learn to apply their knowledge to real-life situations. Throughout the industrial placement, students will maintain contact with their lecturers for regular feedback and review sessions. Upon completion of the industrial placement students return back to campus with more maturity in terms of real-world technology issues. The final year also focuses on the research based dissertation, which is a graduation requirement of the degree program.
The Masters in Business Administration (MBA) is geared towards people who are working, and who already posses a degree or professional qualification. “The MBA program places great emphasis on moulding students to become managers who are capable of looking at an organisation from a strategic perspective. It gives them the background and skills needed to take on roles as Chief Executives in an organisation. Lectures cover all areas from an organisational point of view such as operations management, accounts, economics, human resources management which form the core of any recognised MBA programme” said Mr. Harshana Perera. IIHE has sufficient expertise in delivering the MBA program as the institute has offered the MBA from Wales since 2001.
’s a demanding course but also meant to be a rewarding one because it gives students understanding of how all aspects of a business works and creatively solve problems of the work place” said Mr. Perera. “We always maintain a mix of lecturers who are from universities as well as those excelling in industries, so students gain good exposure in learning experiences from both theoretical as well as industrial context. The lectures facilitate learning, provoking thoughts and encouraging students to think and formulate their own problem solving skills” Mr.Perera added.
Many companies approach IIHE and request for opportunities to interview the final year students and some students are picked up even before they graduate. Many software engineering degree students are offered jobs at the same organisations where they were placed for the industrial learning. “We are proud to say that all graduates are picked up by reputed organizations within 6 weeks of graduation”
University Of Wales requires that a greater component of degree program has to be compatible and comparable to the degree followed in Wales itself but they also give a certain amount of flexibility to customise programs to suit the context in which it is delivered. An example of this is the bachelor’s in business management program where students are given an introduction to Sri-Lankan legal systems and the legal context for business operations.
Students are able to transfer to the University of Wales anytime after their first year, if they wish to. A majority of the students though complete their degree at IIHE as this is much more cost effective. Upon completion of the degree students can even opt to attend the graduation ceremony at the University of Wales which is held in Cardiff.
“We have attracted some of the best students; the MBA has produced several top chief executives of organisations and those who are currently heading different departments. Our operations are monitored via external examiners appointed by the University of Wales, who moderate question papers and visit campus three times a year, they do a thorough check on answer scripts, coursework and delivery, which is aimed at ensuring that the quality of the program offered by the University of Wales is maintained even here” said Mr. Harshana Perera.
Thus IIHE is an ideal study location for students seeking to gain a recognised international qualification which is also cost-effective and provides a good point of entry to industries.