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How to Choose an MBA School?

􀂃 Review the GMAC website, which contains information about applying and has a school
search database

􀂃 Read Peterson’s Guide to MBA programs.

􀂃 Check out the website from any school that interests you.

􀂃 Find out if the schools in which you are interested require prior work experience. Most
schools suggest two to five years work experience and are usually strict about this requirement.

􀂃 Meet with MBA representatives, who are available during the GMAC fall forums held annually
in Boston, Chicago, Los Angeles, New York, San Francisco, Atlanta, Washington,
D.C., and Toronto. Forums also offer workshops about applying to business schools.

􀂃 Decide if you want to study full or part time. Make sure the schools to which you are applying
offer evening or part-time options if this is important to you.

􀂃 Compare your GPA and GMAT scores to those of students accepted at the schools
you’re considering; each school publishes this information. If your grades and scores are
outside the range that a school usually accepts, be sure you have back-up options.

􀂃 Visit business schools. Attend classes and talk with current students and professors.
Factors to Consider When Choosing a School

􀂃 Ask about the size, composition, and diversity of the student body, including minorities, women, and international students.

􀂃 Determine the strength, composition, and accessibility of the faculty.

􀂃 Consider the number/variety of courses offered in the specific areas you intend to study.

􀂃 Methods of teaching vary among MBA programs. Some schools use lectures, some use
the “case method” (studying hypothetical business situations to teach concepts), and
some use both. Ask yourself what kinds of classes you enjoyed most at Smith (lectures?
round table discussions? seminars?) to help you decide what style of teaching you’d prefer
in business school.

􀂃 Ask if the school helps students find employment during the summer months between
classes. Ask about graduate placement. Each business school publicizes the number of
graduates placed in jobs in different areas. Do these fit your interests?

􀂃 Consider the atmosphere and location of the school.

􀂃 Make sure the school is accredited by the AACSB.


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