Most of the advice here on the blahg is about “DON’T DO IT!!” – meaning, a last-round app to bschool is very very challenging and has much less probability of success than it does in the first two rounds of the admissions season. There are many factors and reasons for this and we discuss them…
Along with the many frothy and celebratory emails that EssaySnark gets around this time — beyond the ones wishing holiday cheer, we’re talking here about ones where our clients are reporting acceptances by their schools of choice — we also get a few that feel like they come loaded with bricks: “They put me on…
For many BSers, the answer to that question is “It’s gonna have to be.” Because let’s be real: Even if there’s a small voice in your head worried and wondering about the GMAT score you currently have, there’s a good chance that you’re not going to do anything about it. Not now. Not when it’s…
The Class of 2020 profiles are starting to come out and we’re amazed that GMAT scores are STILL GOING UP WTF HOW?!??? Ross is now sporting a very healthy 720 average. For comparison purposes, Columbia was below 720 until two years ago. NYU is up to 717 from the prior year’s 714, and they are…
You know your GMAT (or GRE) score is low. You’ve debated whether to take the test again, but it’s August. You’re getting stressed about deadlines coming. What if you just write the optional essay about your low score? Shouldn’t that be sufficient? You can tell the adcom that you’ll take the test again if they…
Any long-time reader of the EssaySnark blahg knows that we’re no fans of bschool rankings.
Sure, they give you a starting point when you’re brand-new to this process, to understand which schools are considered “good” — but they hardly tell the whole picture.
When we have a BSer come to us saying they’re interested only in Harvard, Stanford or Wharton, then we just heave a little sigh and say, “Oh well.”
It’s a very limited way to look at the world.
A ranking is someone else’s evaluation of the school. Not your own.
Harvard, Stanford and Wharton are soooooo different as to be almost laughable.
And, there are so many other really good schools out there!!
Anyone claiming that the ROI is only worthwhile with H/S/W is simply saying that they only want to buy their way into a club. That they want the prestige or rubber stamp of a particular brand associated with their name.
They are overlooking the fact that it’s a TWO YEAR COMMITMENT into an experience that will CHANGE you.
Don’t you care about what that experience will be like?
The Harvard and Stanford and Wharton experiences are similar, sure, but they are by no means the same — and they are by no means that much different from what you might get at Columbia, or Ross, or NYU, or…
You get the point.
The biggest issue with someone saying they only care about H/S/W though is when in the same breath they lament the fact that these schools select applicants on GMAT score.
They don’t, of course.
They evaluate the whole package. They look at everything you submit individually and complete a holistic review on how you present your background and your qualities and your strengths and your weaknesses through the individual elements of the app. Including GMAT score, of course.
But they do not select applicants on the basis of GMAT score alone. If they did, the top schools would have only 780-scoring students and nobody else.
Yes it’s a factor.
And yes, the rankings maybe can play a part, in the initial phase of your process of investigating the schools.
But please, if you’re serious about changing your life and you REALLY want to impact the world, then don’t rely on rankings alone to evaluate quality of an institution.
Go find out for yourself what the place is about.
Do your own research.
Construct your own viewpoints. Don’t accept someone else’s.
Rankings are not like fake news; they all are constructed through different methodologies put in place by the different publications. They all profess to use data behind them.
But if you’re serious about learning what the world is really like and not being a victim of propaganda and undue influence from the powers that are trying to control your mind (said in half-jest) then please find out what the world is like FOR YOURSELF.
The schools don’t make admits only on GMAT.
You should not use ranking to figure out where to apply.
Going along with our post from yesterday where we alerted you to the fact that all the schools are asking really different essay questions in their MBA apps this year and the ramifications of that to your app strategy, we’ll further elaborate on some important cautions when you’re researching the schools. We had a very important WARNING! post many years back that talked about when to bother retaking the GMAT or not based on how much of an improvement you expect to be able to make. That post quoted the MBA admissions director at Yale with some scary advice.
When we saw that, we said, “!!!!!”
Dunno if he feels the same way today but he might — and to be fair, we understand where he was coming from. (Pro Tip: Read that original post we just linked to — oh hey here it is again!)
We’re offering this as an example to make a larger point.
Most certainly, the Yale director’s view about GMAT score improvement is shared with others, but it’s not a universal.
There’s an opposite school of thought among some admissions professionals where they appreciate every effort to improve, and the mere fact that you’re trying gets you some brownie points.
Our purpose today is not to discuss GMAT test strategies (you can find plenty of that in the ‘snarchive under the category of GMAT and GRE). Instead it’s to warn you to pay attention.
Because it happens every year and it’s happening again this year: Different schools have different requirements, which you probably know, but different admissions folks have way different philosophies and standards, too.
It makes sense, obviously. Everyone comes into a job with their own biases and priorities, and also every school has a different set of values and they tackle the task of evaluating candidates through different approaches.
This means that not only do you need to review carefully all the details that a school offers to you on applying, but you need to keep them straight and not assume that what applies in one place is translatable anywhere else.
So this is just a PSA for today.
Review those applications early! Read all the pages!
Keep notes! Make a spreadsheet!
Sweat the details!
Make sure you’re giving each school what they want!
Pay attention to what the admissions peeps tell you in the info sessions! But don’t think that every other school will have the same view!
Obviously you need a good GMAT score to get into a good business school. But did you know that that’s not the end of it? There’s actually several other situations where your GMAT (or GRE) score will be used to make critical evaluations about you that will dramatically impact your life. One situation is your…
EssaySnark has long been a fan of giving the adcom every reason to want to admit you and in the category of presenting a conservative approach to your app strategy, we traditionally have extolled the virtues of the GMAT over the GRE at least if you’re looking to get an MBA. We kinda cover this…
Are you (re)taking the GMAT? What’s your score cancel strategy? A key driver of GMAT score inflation among MBA applicants is the relatively new development that allows you to cancel your test score. Years ago, you took the GMAT and that was that. Bad score? Oh well, tough luck, it’s part of your permanent record….