About the MBA
The Master of Business Administration (MBA) originated in the U.S. in the late 1800s when industry began to seek a more scientific approach to business management. Today, hundreds of b-schools around the world offer thousands of MBA programs, aiming to provide students with advanced management skills.
MBA programs can be divided into several categories. The following are the most popular:
Full-time MBA: A one or two year program requiring full time study, during which students do not work. The most prestigious programs tend to fall under this category.
Part-time MBA: A program that allows students to work part-time during their studies.
Executive MBA: A program designed for executives with extensive business experience. The Executive MBA allows students to work full-time during their studies. One of the major advantages of this program is the networking opportunities amongst students.
Surveys show that the main reasons students choose to apply for MBA programs are:
• A significant salary improvement upon completing the degree
• Break through the glass ceiling and access a wider range of jobs within an organization
• Improve positioning compared to other candidates vying for the same job
• Obtain management skills and tools
• Networking and business connections
For most, application considerations for MBA programs include a GMAT score, the BA degree grade, professional experience and sometimes a candidate's background.
For admission to top business schools in the U.S. and Europe, a full GMAT score (i.e., a score in each section of the exam) is required. To gain acceptance to the best universities in Europe, you generally need a total score (combined verbal-quantitative) of above 680, a score of at least 4 in the Analytical Writing section, and a strong score in the Integrated Reasoning section. To attend a top business school in the U.S., you should aim to surpass 700, with at least a 4 in the Analytical Writing, and a strong score in the Integrated Reasoning.
However, the GMAT score constitutes only 15%-25% of the admission council’s considerations. Other considerations include past experience, prior studies, recommendations, and often a personal interview.
It is recommended that you work on the application essays with an admissions consultant specializing in the field.
Top U.S. and European University Rankings
The table below shows the rankings of the top 50 schools in the world in 2013. Each ranking includes the school's name, its location, the average GMAT score of admitted students, graduates average annual salary 3 years after graduation, the percentage of graduates who reported that they had gained employment within 3 months of graduation, and the reported increase of salary after completion of the degree (calculated as a percentage according to the difference from the average salary before the degree).