MBA acceptance rates in the USA are relatively competitive, and a bit more competitive than MBA acceptance rates in Canada. The US is home to some of the best-known and most prestigious MBA programs in the world, and these schools can be extremely selective. For the best shot at getting into a top MBA program, you’ll want to submit a high GPA, strong GMAT scores, an impressive MBA resume and killer essays. More importantly, you want to demonstrate how you stand out from a crowd of equally impressive candidates in the MBA admission essays and admission interview. In this blog, we’ll look at MBA acceptance rates in the US as well as how to improve your chances of getting into the program of your choice.
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MBA acceptance rates in the US
MBA acceptance rates in the US are generally very competitive, especially at the top-ranked schools like Stanford Business School and Wharton School of Business, which both have notoriously low acceptance rates and are some of the best MBA programs in the world. MBA programs are extremely popular in the US, with most schools receiving thousands of applications per year from both domestic and international students. MBA graduates continue to be in demand in the US, so earning an MBA from a top US school is considered pretty competitive, even with average acceptance rates going up in recent years.
There are around 560 MBA programs in the US alone, and the acceptance rate, average accepted GPAs and GMAT scores vary greatly depending on the school. At the top 10 schools like Harvard Business School and Kellogg Business School, the average acceptance rates sits at around 18%.
To get into the best MBA schools in the US, you’ll need a strong and diverse application to stand out. While you can get into an MBA program with a low GPA, you’ll want to bring your best to every part of the MBA application.
Admission requirements vary quite a bit from program to program, but most MBA schools in the US will require high GMAT or GRE scores. Even if these tests are not required, submitting them can bump up your application a bit. The overall reported average GMAT score for MBA students was 609, which is quite high but not unattainable. Average accepted GPA scores at US MBA programs are also relatively high at 3.5 and above out of a 4.0 scale.
Along with test scores and impressive transcripts, getting into an MBA program requires stellar MBA admission essays, on average two MBA letters of recommendation and of course your MBA resume to demonstrate your work experience. While professional experience isn’t always a requirement, it is preferred by many schools and goes a long way towards convincing admission committees.
In this table we’ll look at the acceptance rates and average GPA and GMAT scores accepted by the top 100 MBA programs in the US.
Prepping for your MBA admission interview? Watch this video!
How to improve your chances of getting into an MBA program
The most important thing to remember when putting together an application for a business school is to start early. Top MBA programs often ask for a comprehensive application package, not just your school transcripts and GMAT scores but an MBA letter of intent but multiple letters of recommendation and some personal essays or an MBA video essay. It will take some time to put it all together and review it before you apply. For feedback on your application, you might run it by an MBA essay consultant or MBA admission consulting service first, which may also take some of your prep time.
As well as applying early, it’s also common for MBA applicants to think that they need to create the “perfect” business school application with the right resume, personal essays and work experiences in particular fields. The truth it, most business schools aren’t particular about what your career aspirations are, they mostly want to know that you are committed to your ambitions and that their MBA program is the right fit. They want to know why you want to pursue an MBA and how you think their program will contribute to your professional development. That being said, it’s also crucial to set yourself apart and stand out. Some students can do this by including an MBA diversity essay, but you’ll need a little more to get accepted to the top business schools. Here’s a quick guide on diversifying and strengthening your MBA application.
Need some tips for an MBA resume? Read this helpful infographic.
While MBA acceptance rates in the US are quite competitive, it is far from impossible to get in. Most of the competition from MBA admissions in the US comes from the high number of qualified candidates and the selectivity of the top schools. If you plan to apply to some of the top schools, it’s in your best interest to apply early and to diversify your application as much as possible. Show the admissions committee that you are a preferred candidate by crafting a superior and personalized application.
1. What is the average MBA acceptance rate in the US?
The acceptance rate at US MBA programs varies greatly, but the average acceptance rate at the top schools hovers around 18%.
2. Which MBA has highest acceptance rate?
One of the MBA program in the US with the highest acceptance rate is Loyola University Sellinger School of Business and Management in Maryland, which has an acceptance rate of 99%.
3. Which MBA has lowest acceptance rate?
Stanford Business School has long held a notoriously low acceptance rate, most recently of around 6%.
4. What GPA do I need for MBA?
On average, MBA applicants have a GPA of 3.5 or higher to get into the top schools. It’s possible to get into a good MBA program with a low GPA, but a high one helps to stand out in a crowd of eligible candidates.
5. What GMAT score do I need for MBA?
The average GMAT score for MBA applicants is over 600, which is high but can be achieved with excellent GMAT prep. The GMAT is not a requirement at all MBA schools, but an impressive score can also help increase your chances of getting in.
6. Is it hard to get into MBA school? How low are MBA acceptance rates in the US?
While getting into MBA school in the US is challenging, it is not impossible. MBA programs are very popular and the top schools can be extremely selective, but there is a wide variety of programs to choose from with a wide range of acceptance rates and admission requirements.
7. Is GMAT required for MBA in the US?
Not all schools require a GMAT as part of their admission requirements, but some may suggest submitting GMAT test scores to improve a weaker application.
8. Can you get into MBA with a low GPA?
Yes, it is possible to get into an MBA program with a low GPA. There are a few different ways to make up for a low GPA, including addressing it in an MBA cover letter or in the MBA interview.
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