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Dr. Greta E. Couper email: gcouper@pepperdine 310-506-4074 Seaver College Career Center Pepperdine University October 2 - PowerPoint PPT Presentation

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Applying to Business School Dr. Greta E. Couper email: 310-506-4074 Seaver College Career Center Pepperdine University October 2009 Overview of the Choice

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Applying toBusiness School

Dr. Greta E. Couper



Seaver College Career Center

Pepperdine University

October 2009

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Overview of the Choice

What is an MBA? Why Obtain an MBA? Timing: Now or Later? Cost and Loans Rankings and Accreditation Program Types Application Process Top FAQs Long Term Benefits

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What is an MBA?

The Master in Business Administration (MBA) degree is internationally recognized as a passport to a successful management career.

  • The MBA is essentially a generalist qualification designed to widen the horizons of business professionals.  It takes into account all the major functions and practices of a business, including:

    • Production, Scheduling, and Marketing

    • Finance                                

    • Economics and Business Law

    • Accounting and Quantitative Methods

    • Management Information Systems

    • Organizational Development, Human Resources and Staff Management

  • As well as being a postgraduate degree, the MBA is also strongly experience-related, where students usually have three or more year’s postgraduate work experience.

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Why Obtain an MBA?

In a poll of members of the Association of MBAs, with 1,300 respondents, in which they were asked why they took an MBA, the following reasons were given (listed in order of priority) *:

  • To obtain a business qualification 82%

  • To improve job opportunities 79%

  • For Intellectual stimulation 70%

  • To increase salary 67%

  • To obtain general skills 64%

  • To change career direction 61%

  • To increase self-confidence52%

    * From:

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  • Regional: Such as WASC (Western Assoc. of Schools & Colleges)

  • (AACSB) The Association to Advance Collegiate Schools of Business. Represents the highest standard of achievement for business schools worldwide. (Focus on research).

  • (ACBSP) Association of Collegiate Business Schools and Programs, accreditation focus on teaching excellence.

  • See:


  • Degree Visibility

  • International Reputation

  • Reviewed programs

  • Company Reimbursement and Govt. Financial Aid

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Business School Reviews

  • The Financial Times

  • Princeton Review

  • US News and World Report

  • Business Week

  • Wall Street Journal

  • Asia News

    Agencies use different criteria

    • Alumni Surveys

    • Teaching quality

    • Career services

    • Faculty members' academic publications in 20 journals

    • (Wharton and Harvard did not allow alumni surveys)

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MBA Program Types

  • Domestic or International

  • Full Time Day Program

  • Evening MBA; Morning MBA; Other Location

  • Accelerated MBA; 5 Year Combo

  • Fully Employed MBA

  • Distance Learning Online MBA or Combo

  • Executive MBA

  • Special Combinations (JD, PP, Dispute Resolution, Technology, Environment, etc)

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Key Factors to Selecting a Program

  • When can you attend classes?

  • Where do you want to attend school?

  • How fast do you want to get your MBA?

  • How much work experience do you have?

  • How important is cost?

  • How do you enjoy learning – independent or groups?

  • Specialty applications; emphasis on industries

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GMATGraduate Management Admission Test

  • Electronic Standardized Assessment

    • Analytical Writing (2 essays, 1 hour)

    • Quantitative Reasoning; (37 multiple choice Qs; 75 minutes)

    • Verbal Reasoning (41 multiple choice Qs, 75 minutes)

  • Take only once per month; 5 times per year (Cost $225)

  • The MBA program accepts the highest score (500+)

  • Resources


    • Kaplan

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Personal Statement

A letter or essay that summarizes why they should select you, use questions below:

  • Why have I chosen to attend graduate school in this specific field

  • Why did I choose to apply to this particular school's program?

  • What are my qualifications for admission?

  • How am I different from others? (Languages, living abroad, work experience, etc)

    TOP 10 GRADUATE SCHOOL ESSAY WRITING TIPS* 1. Don't Write a Term Paper. 2. Don't Bore the Reader. Do Be Interesting. 3. Do Use Personal Detail. Show, Don't Tell! 4. Do Be Concise. Don't Be Wordy. 5. Do Address Your Weaknesses. Don't Dwell on Them. 6. Do Vary Your Sentences and Use Transitions. 7. Do Use Active Voice Verbs 8. Do Seek Multiple Opinions. 9. Don't Wander. Do Stay Focused. 10. Do Revise, Revise, Revise.

    Ask friends and colleagues to review for content and style.

    *See websites samples:

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Application Deadlines

  • Most MBA schools have rounds for application times.

  • The financial aid deadlines can be different from application deadlines.

  • Third round deadlines are not necessarily the final deadlines. Some schools have a fourth round and some others accept applications after the deadlines on a space available basis.


    School Round 1 Round 2 Round 3 subsequent

    Berkeley November 5 December 11 January 31 March 12, 2008

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The MBA Interview

MBA Admissions Interview Tips

  • Be yourself; allow your personality to shine.

  • Respond to questions honestly and candidly.

  • Understand what is asked of you. Feel free to ask for a repeat if you don't clearly understand a question.

  • Do your homework on the school and program.

  • Be on time. Look nice. 

  • Examine yourself. Know about the MBA and how it can aid you.

    Sample MBA Interview Questions*

  • Discuss your career progression.

  • Give examples of how you have demonstrated leadership inside and outside the work environment.

  • Why the MBA?  Why now?

  • Describe an ethical dilemma faced at work?

  • Describe your career aspirations?

  • What are your long- and short-term goals?  Why?


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Now What?

  • Meet with a Career Counselor

  • Use Career Center Library and Sources


  • Select three schools to concentrate on

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Application Process: General Requirements

  • Research Schools and Check Deadlines

  • Apply online at MBA school website

  • Minimum GPA for admission (2.5 ?)

  • Take GMAT (500+ , 700+ at top schools)

  • Write the Statement of Purpose and Other Required Letters

  • Write your Resume

  • Submit non-refundable fee ($100 ?)

  • Submit one set of original transcripts

  • Obtain Letters of Reference (2 ?)

  • (International Students apply to International Admissions)

  • Format application into Power Point slides (optional ?)

  • Apply Early TIPS (particularly international students)

    • Create your file – even if you have not yet taken the GMAT Exam

    • Inform the Admissions Office of your scheduled GMAT Date

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“A journey of a 1000 miles must begin with a single step.” Lao Tzu

"Would you tell me, please, which way I ought to go from here?"

"That depends a good deal on where you want to get to," said the Cat.

"I don't much care where..." said Alice.

"Then it doesn't much matter which way you go," said the Cat.

--- Lewis Carroll, Alice in Wonderland