As a frequent Forbes contributor, second-year Harvard Business School student Leslie Moser has authored countless articles related to B-school applications. In a recent one, she compiled what she called her “best advice” into an “ultimate guide” to graduate program admissions.
As both we here at mbaMission and you already know, applying to business school is a difficult and time-consuming process, but Moser stresses that you can significantly improve your dream school acceptance chances by following the right plan.
Moser’s full article provides more detail, but here is a summarized list of her recommended steps and techniques.
1. Take the GMAT
The GMAT is required for acceptance to almost every major graduate program. Moser encourages you to pick a date on which to take the test and stick to it.
2. Select Your Schools
Identify the schools to which you want to apply early, so you can study their admissions policies as thoroughly as possible before completing applications. You should also make sure the program you ultimately attend will help you attain the type of skills and career you desire. Consult the various schools’ employment reports for in-depth information on the kinds of career offers graduates have received.
3. Do Your Research
Research your dream schools. Learn about their requirements. Subscribe to their social media channels. Investigate the backgrounds of candidates who have been accepted into their programs. The more information you have about your prospects, the better.
4. Devote Time to Your Essays
Every business school requires applicants to complete some sort of essay. Moser advises MBA hopefuls to allocate plenty of time for this all-important step.
5. Prepare for Your Interview
Once you submit your application, begin preparing as thoroughly as possible for your interview.
6. Weigh Your Options
If you receive an acceptance offer from more than one school, take the time to fully consider the pros and cons of each program—especially as they pertain to your career and personal goals.
7. Get Ready for School
Congratulations! Address and complete all the necessary paperwork and to-do’s before year one begins.