MBA abroad – requisites and prospects

MBA abroad – requisites and prospects

Pursuing an MBA abroad would definitely help you get an ultimate entry ticket with a good and high-paying job. The schools abroad focus on practical...

I am pursuing my final year graduation in commerce honours and want to pursue an MBA abroad, mostly in the US. Please give me details on the eligibility, the top B Schools and also the cost and other related information. - Pallavi Sinha, Secunderabad

Pursuing an MBA abroad would definitely help you get an ultimate entry ticket with a good and high-paying job. The schools abroad focus on practical aspects and offer much broader exposure and perspective. The cultural experience will broaden your outlook, and a foreign MBA will help you build a strong and large global network.

In the US, either you can opt for a state supported or a private B-School and all of these programmes are usually two year full time courses though some of them offer fast track programmes of lesser duration.

There is generally no age limit to pursue MBA and people in the age group of 21- 40 years are the ones who generally opt for it.

Business schools in USA, give preference to candidates with 16 years of undergraduate programme, therefore after your graduation you can pursue a one/two year university affiliated programme to make up for the fourth year. Ensure that the programme that you do is a recognised university programme. Some universities may accept the three-year graduation degree; list of such universities:

1.University of Virginia Darden School of Business

2.Dartmouth University Tuck School of Business

3.University of Pennsylvania Wharton School

4.NYU Stern School of Business

5.MIT, Sloan School of Management

6.Duke University Fuqua School of Business

7.University of Chicago, Booth School of Business

8.Northwestern University, Kellogg School of Management

9.Columbia Business School

10. Yale School of Management

If your dream school is not listed here, you need to visit the concerned university website and check out their FAQ section where most of your queries will get answered. If you still have questions unanswered, send across an email to the admissions committee and get a definite answer.

Before you decide to take a plunge into the international MBA world, I recommend that you spend a few years getting a decent amount of real-world experience. Average work-experience of students in top 10 B-schools in USA is 5.5 years, and is considered as one of the important criterion for admissions. Most likely, they look out for potential candidates who can add value to their school and benefit the most from the programme. Therefore, it is mandatory that you have some industry knowledge and hands-on experience in your chosen career field. In your application letter you can leverage your experiences, highlighting your meritorious achievements, professional accomplishments and leadership qualities at work.

Previous study records, play a key role in getting admission in the MBA programme in the US universities. Most of them have their own marking system, and might ask for official transcripts such as mark sheet of each college and university attended.

Along with a strong academic record, MBA schools abroad also give quite a lot of weight to extracurricular activities.

The tuition fee for MBA programme varies according to the different universities in the US, the average cost of tuition varies from 25-45 lakhs. However, all reputed universities across the globe offer scholarships for international candidates, you can avail student loans from Indian banks as well.

GMAT (Graduate Management Aptitude Test) and TOEFL (Test of English as a Foreign Language) are most important exams, which are generally needed for getting admission in the USA MBA colleges. Most of the MBA colleges generally consider the minimum TOEFL score IBT based - 80 and minimum GMAT score – 650.

The letter of recommendation, (usually two or three such letters are required) is very important for the application process. This is a statement of appreciation from people who know you either in an academic institution or at the work place. The person giving recommendation should include his position, how long he knows the candidate and in what capacity. He should mainly outline the candidate’s leadership qualities and his achievements.

MBA application essay plays a vital role in the admission process, and gives most significant impression of you as an individual. It helps make your application stand out amidst other suitable candidates. Many universities look into the leadership qualities in a candidate and if you have demonstrated ability in school/college/work place, it is highly recommended that you talk about your achievements in your personal essays. In addition, care should be taken to explain how this MBA would help you in your future career plans and emphasise your aims, objectives and aspirations for success.

List of top US business schools:

1. University of Pennsylvania: Wharton Business School

2. Harvard Business School

3. Stanford University GSB

4. Columbia Business School

5. MIT: Sloan School Of Management

6. University of Chicago Booth School of Business

7. New York University: Stern

8. Dartmouth College: Tuck

9. Yale School of Management

10. Northwestern University: Kellogg

Refer to link:; wherein you can find and compare schools, the name, location, the degree programme, programme type, delivery format, programme length, start date, etc.

Look at the top b-school rankings, the rankings published by Financial Times, Business Week, Economist Intelligence Unit are good starting points.

Study their websites and the web-page that says ‘current class profile’. This should give you a good idea of the entry barriers.

My final advice is before you decide for an MBA in the US, identify your strengths and weakness in the academic (undergrad grades, awards, achievements), professional (quality of work, career growth so far) and personal dimensions (personality, soft-skills, general knowledge). If you plan to take a loan, remember to keep debt below one year's salary. All the best!

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