How Many MBA Programs Should I Apply To?

Applying to MBA programs can be a hectic time. Many factors are involved in the application process, but doing a little research in advance can maximize the chance of getting accepted.

The best tool an applicant can utilize is an updated book or web site on MBA programs. These tools profile various programs and contain information about the number of applications received during the previous year, the number of applicants accepted, typical GMAT scores, and GPAs. This information is usually published annually, and applicants may want to follow trends over a couple of years before applying.

Once the applicant has decided on a number of programs, the list should categorized based on how similar the applicant is to others that have been accepted. Sending applications blindly to many schools is equally as detrimental as focusing on one program. Most people suggest applying to at least five programs and applying to as many as possible. This can be difficult for applicants with limited funds. Application fees can be expensive, especially combined with the price of score reports, transcripts, and mailing. Applying to schools that require interviews during the selection process should also be thoroughly considered. If money is an obstacle, it may be wise to reconsider applying to a school where attending the interview would be impossible and a telephone interview is not an option.

Most of the applications should target programs where the applicant is similar in scores and GPA to previously accepted students. Applicants may also consider applying to a couple of schools they are overqualified for, and a school where they fall below the typical accepted applicant. Investing too many resources on programs that are beyond the reach of the applicant is inevitably a waste of time and money.

GMAT scores can have a strong influence on admission decisions and applicants will want to maximize their score. The most popular and convenient option is an online prep course. They are beneficial in their ability to cover information as well as giving sample tests and test-taking tactics. If the applicant is not satisfied with their score, they will want to give themselves ample opportunity to study and retake the test.

Students are Turning to Graduate Study to Improve Skills

With the economy still being in a very precarious state, and foreclosures and unemployment still a common occurrence, many wonder where life will take them. Americans are predictably resilient, starting new businesses, changing careers and going back to school to make the new reality work for them. Many people wonder how many students are going to grad school now that jobs are scarce and millions are struggling to make ends meet.

Test preparation companies are seeing a surge of students young and old enrolling in test prep classes and preparing for graduate study. These students want to gain new skills and sharpen old ones, making themselves more attractive in the employment market. For students looking to go to business school, it may be helpful to enroll in a free GMAT course, or enroll in online GMAT prep. These courses will prepare you for the questions that will be asked in the actual exam and will give you a snapshot of the test at a glance.

The GMAT, or Graduate Management Admission Test is the comprehensive exam that most students will need to pass in order to apply for graduate study. Most colleges and universities require this exam, although many schools are relaxing their score requirements to allow for more students to gain entry. The GMAT is administered by independent testing sites and registered proctors and requires a fee to sit for the test. The test is comprised of several parts that evaluate the verbal, mathematical and written analytical skills of the applicant.

Many students are enrolling in business programs in order to strike out on their own and learn entrepreneurship skills that will help them manage their own small businesses. Some are going back to school to learn skills that will allow them to train for more responsibility in their existing jobs. Still others are career changers looking for a totally new field, breaking away from their previous career fields.

With the state of the economy, more students are turning to graduate study as a means to earn new skills, and brush up on old ones. Many are finding that the new reality means that they have to change the way they think about the world of work. When it comes to graduate study, students can be prepared for college admission by studying for standardized tests, taking an online GMAT prep. The possibilities are endless.

Preparing to Retake the GMAT

Many people choose to retake the GMAT in order to improve on their original scores. You are allowed to retake the test once every 31 days and no more than five times in a one year period. As all test scores for the past five years (including cancellations) show on your student report, if you are planning on retaking the exam, we suggest taking it no more than three times. Beyond that, schools may not look at multiple attempts in a positive light. The good new though, is having taken the GMAT once before, you will be able to draw on your past experience and use these scores to help tailor your study plan for future tries.

Tailor Your GMAT Test Prep

Your GMAT test prep for the second time around can focus more heavily on the areas you struggled with on the first test, be it quantitative, verbal, or the writing assessment. You may feel that you just need to review some sections before test day and spend significant amounts of time on areas that were a challenge on your first GMAT. Immediately after taking the test, you may be able to look up questions that threw you off the first time you took the test, having these challenges in mind for your studying will give you a good starting point.

Online GMAT test prep will help you to cater your plan to meet your needs — even more important now that you have a better grasp on which areas will be a challenge. Taking practice tests along the way will help you to gauge how your scores are improving on the way to your second test.

Draw on Your Knowledge of the Test

Having already taken the GMAT once will also help you to relax and do your best on test day. You’ve been in the exact situation before and may have an even better idea of how they test will go than you did from your practice tests before the first attempt. You can focus on the content and feel comfortable with the computer and the format of the test.

The GMAT can be very different from any other test you have taken in the past, especially in that you cannot go back and change your answers in the verbal and quantitative sections. Having experienced this in a real test setting can help you the second time around, especially if you were anxious about the test format the first time you took the GMAT.

Even when you’re taking the test for the second or third time, it is important to maintain a solid study schedule and continue to review material and take online GMAT practice tests. Doing so will help prevent your scores from decreasing, help you to improve your test taking abilities, and keep the material fresh for the next test.

GMAT Study Tips

There are many different ways to study for the GMAT. As with any important test, you will want to think about the methods that have worked for you in the past and come up with a combination of the different approaches to create a plan that will work for you. Combining a few of the many strategies is a good way to ensure that you are well prepared for GMAT test day.

Online GMAT Test Prep
Online test prep is a great way to study for the GMAT on your schedule. Online test prep can fit into anyone’s hectic life and allow you to work at a pace that’s right for you. The GMAT is taken on the computer, so studying online is another way to get used to the format and comfortable with the test’s look. There are great options for online test prep available today and students are walking away feeling well-prepared for the exam.

Practice Tests
One of the most important ways to prepare for the GMAT is by taking practice tests. Practice tests allow you to get a feel for the way the test works and how you will work best on test day. Feeling comfortable with the format of the test, a new thing for many test takers, and allow test-takers to feel more confident on test day. Practice test scores can also help you to identify areas that need more work and narrow your focus when you go back to your other methods of studying for the GMAT.

Flashcards
For many people, flashcards are a useful study tool. There’s a reason flashcards have been a mainstay of studying since grade school, they work. Flashcards are good to help you learn new terminology and master new information in a quick and easy way. Flashcards are also great for people who are studying on the go because they can go with you to work, to school, or even on public transportation for your commute.

Test Strategies
Learning some basic test taking strategies can be extremely helpful for the GMAT. Learning how to work through questions, read questions quickly and accurately, and work through process of elimination the answers can help you on test day. Time management is another important skill for the GMAT and practicing skills can make a big difference in your final GMAT scores.

Combining several study methods as you prepare for the GMAT is a sure way to learn information and be sure that you go into the test prepared and confident.

2010 Business School Rankings

Choosing a good business school is an important decision for your education and career. It is important to take time to learn about various programs and review all of the information and rankings available. US News & World Report and Business Week are two reliable sources that rank the top business schools each year.

In 2010, Harvard Business School at Harvard University and Stanford University’s tied for first on the US News and World Report list. Third place went to the Sloan School of Management at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) and fourth to Northwestern University’s Kellogg School of Management. The University of Chicago’s Booth School and University of Pennsylvania’s Wharton School tied for fifth place on the list of top business schools.

Business Week also provides rankings of the best business schools in the United States, as well as the top international programs and part-time options. Business week ranked University of Chicago’s Booth School first, Harvard Business School second and Northwestern University’s Kellogg School third. Wharton School at the University of Pennsylvania came in fourth on Business Week’s list and the University of Michigan’s Ross School placed fifth.

The Queen’s School of Business in Kingston, Ontario ranked first in Business Week’s list of top international business schools. Business Week also ranked the best part-time MBA programs with Worcester Polytechnic Institute in Worcester, Massachusetts coming out on top. Carnegie Mellon University’s Tepper School placed first on this list in 2009. There are many excellent part-time programs that are designed to fit into each student’s unique situation and schedule. Through these programs, it is possible for students to continue to work or have a family while they are earning their MBA.

Admissions for the top business schools are extremely competitive. It is important to prepare an application that sets you apart from the pool of applicants. For business school applications it is important to highlight your unique experiences in work, education, and even travel. These are things that will shape how you perceive business and how your MBA will fit into your career plan.

Performing well on the GMAT is key for people who want to attend a top business school. The GMAT, in combination with the undergraduate transcript and work experience, will help to determine where you will be accepted. A solid GMAT test prep program will prepare you to excel on the GMAT. When preparing for the test, online test prep programs are a great option for people with full time jobs and hectic schedules. GMAT practice exams will help test takers to prepare for the unique format of the GMAT.

The Benefits of Online Test Prep for the GMAT

The Graduate Management Admission Test (GMAT) is the standardized test necessary for people planning to attend business school. The GMAT is made up of three sections: the analytical writing assessment, the quantitative section, and the verbal section. A solid plan for GMAT test prep is essential to preparing for test day. Due to the format of the GMAT, many people find that online prep is a good option.

It is important to know going in to the GMAT that the quantitative and verbal sections are computer adaptive tests. This means that the test taker is presented with one question at a time on the computer. Depending on whether or not they answer the question correctly, they will be presented with a new question. An incorrect answer will result in easier questions whereas a correct answer will generate more difficult questions. This process will continue until the end of each section.

Due to this computer adaptive test format, online GMAT prep is one of the best ways to prepare for the GMAT. It is critical for test takers to become comfortable with this format in order to be successful on test day. GMAT test prep can help people become acclimated to working with this format and be sure that they will not face unexpected challenges on test day.

In a computer adaptive environment, it is not possible to return to previous questions, skip questions, or change answers after the fact. Success is frequently determined not only by test takers knowledge of the material, but by their ability to perform within the test’s format. Online GMAT prep is a good way to give test takers time to learn the format. This will allow them to become comfortable not only with the material, but with the mode of delivery. It will also help test takers become familiar with the length of the test and work to pace themselves on test day as they move through the computer-adaptive sections.

GMAT test preparation can be a challenge for working professionals. Many people taking the GMAT have full work schedules and busy lives. Online GMAT prep is a good way to fit GMAT test preparation into a hectic schedule. It allows people to choose when and where they can prepare for the test and design a schedule that meets their needs.


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