Which sentence is better one ?
Harvard's MBA programme is regarded as the finest in the country.
Harvard's MBA programme is regarded the finest in the country.
Just like like the use of As with consider / considered is diminishing and its all right to use consider without as, Can we omit as in the above sentence ? Is it grammatically correct ? I am not able to figure the difference in above given sentence but in the below given sentence its clearly wrong to use regard without as :
He regarded her as his sister.
Please don't suggest anything else like replacing regarded with considered as I don't have that privilege .Its a exam question , considering just those two sentences suggest which one is better.