SOURCE: Veritas Prep

December 11, 2008 11:13 ET

Veritas Prep Research: MBA Admissions Officers Reveal Current Trends in the Application Process and What Students Can Expect in the Next Five Years

Survey of Admissions Officers at Leading Business Schools Reveals a Desire for More Diverse Applicant Pools and More Direct Interaction With Applicants

MALIBU, CA--(Marketwire - December 11, 2008) - Veritas Prep, a leading GMAT prep and MBA admissions consulting firm, today released the results of proprietary research designed to identify current and anticipated trends in MBA admissions and mine the perceptions of admissions officers. The survey, conducted in October and November by an independent firm on behalf of Veritas Prep, yielded responses from admissions officers from more than half of the top 30 business schools nationwide, according to bi-annual rankings compiled by "BusinessWeek," including full-time MBA, part-time MBA and executive MBA programs.

While all findings gleaned from the eight-week survey will prove to be invaluable in helping Veritas Prep clients gain admission into leading MBA programs, the following results are of particular importance to anyone applying to business school:

--  The biggest challenges institutions face are attracting more, better-
    qualified candidates, and supporting cultural diversity in their student
    bodies. Among desired changes that admissions officers would like to see in
    their applicant pool, diversity ranks first (87%), while 57 percent of
    respondents would like to see a larger applicant pool at their
    institutions.
    
--  The number of international applicants to leading U.S. business
    schools has increased over the past five years. Ninety-four percent of
    responding admissions officers report a moderate to significant increase in
    international applicants during the last five admissions cycles. Currently,
    the average ratio of American student applicants to international student
    applicants is 59:41, with the two countries (outside of North America)
    sending the most students to respondents' schools being India and China.
    
--  The number of admits straight out of undergraduate studies is on the
    rise. Despite the fact that 63 percent of respondents say professional
    experience is the most important factor in student selection, almost half
    (47%) report that the number of admits straight out of college has
    significantly or moderately increased compared to five years ago.
    
--  Careless errors ranked as the top faux pas committed by students
    during the application process. Inconsistency between institutional choice
    and students' educational objectives and ambitions ranked second, and the
    inclusion of unrequested items and inappropriate interview conduct tie for
    the third most commonly witnessed application blunder.
    
--  Admissions officers view students that enlist the assistance of
    admissions consultants neutrally.  While seven percent of respondents said
    that they view applicants who use admissions consultants positively, 80
    percent view such students neutrally. In general, most admissions officers
    feel that admissions consultants help students identify the programs with
    which they fit best and clarify their career goals.
    
--  Admissions officers anticipate changes in the student application
    process in coming years.  Most respondents believe the student application
    process will include more face-to-face or telephone interviews in the next
    five years (60%). While over half of admissions officers foresee the
    application process becoming less complex (53%), another forty percent
    predict the application process will become increasingly intricate in the
    coming years.
    

"These survey results confirm the fact that admission into a leading business school is attainable for anyone with a compelling background, and that there is no single definition of a 'typical' MBA student," explains Scott Shrum, director of MBA admissions research at Veritas Prep and co-author of "Your MBA Game Plan: Proven Strategies for Getting Into the Top Business Schools." "While many people believe they would be out of place in a competitive MBA program, admissions officers from top programs have reinforced the fact that applicants should not refrain from applying simply because they think they don't fit the mold."

For additional information on the results of the admissions officer research or to inquire about Veritas Prep's GMAT prep and MBA admissions consulting services, visit http://www.veritasprep.com or call 1 (800) 925-7737.

About Veritas Prep

Veritas Prep is a leading GMAT prep and admissions consulting provider offering effective programs to help students improve GMAT scores and gain admission to the world's best graduate schools. Founded in 2002 by graduates of the Yale School of Management, Veritas Prep offers live GMAT prep instruction in more than 70 cities worldwide, as well as interactive online courses. In addition to the most comprehensive GMAT prep courses available, Veritas Prep offers industry-leading admissions counseling and advising services to applicants seeking admission to the most competitive MBA programs and law schools.

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