MBA Rankings: MBA School Rankings
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We have a long tradition of rankings in the united States.
American magazines were the first to compile lists of the top 500
companies, the 100 richest people, the 50 best places to live and
even the 10 worst-dressed movie stars. Rankings are entrenched in
popular culture and classifying the products of the free market
keeps the wheels for capitalism turning. But you need to take
rankings with a big grain of salt!
Business Week, US News & World Report, and only fairly recently
the Financial Times publish Business School Rankings every year or
two. The results are eagerly awaited and are the subject of much
debate amongst the schools, alumni, recruiters and MBA candidates.
The results of the rankings change from one year to the next, and
from one publication to another. For example, Stanford is ranked
number one by US News, but is placed number eleven in the Business
Week rankings of the same year.
One of the explanations for such disparities is the lack of a
single, objective method for compiling of rankings of the best MBAs.
The aim is to compare different institutions according to a number
of pre-defined criteria. It's easy to company the respective heights
of Al and George because height is an objective measure that
provides easy comparative data. But things get a little trickier
when you are trying to establish whether Columbia is better than
MIT. Imagine that you are a journalist at Business Week, and that
your boss has just asked you to come up with a methodology for
business school rankings. What are the criteria you'll use?
Graduating salaries, or the number of Nobel Prize-winning
professors, GMAT scores or recruiter satisfaction? The Business
Week, US News, and Financial times rankings are the result of a
number of journalists' subjective selection of data for defining the
schools. Furthermore, the criteria change from year to year in some
publication. this explains why the rankings differ from one
publication to the next and, even within the same publication, from
year to year.