Second Wave of Findings from MBA Prospects Survey Released

July 06, 2010

Findings from our second annual study of students planning to pursue an MBA degree are now available in the publications section of Bill Hayward, the firm’s practice leader for higher ed, presented the findings last month at the annual conference of the Association of International Graduate Admissions Consultants (AIGAC) at MIT’s Sloan School of Management.

The survey was the most recent collaboration between Slover Linett and AIGAC, with whom we have enjoyed a productive partnership for the last two years.

The new wave of the study builds on the initial survey of prospective MBA students conducted last year by Slover Linett. It included many of the same questions, to allow for tracking, as well as several new lines of inquiry.

The annual research examines how prospective MBA students around the world choose business schools to apply to, what resources they use during the decision and application process, and what they hope to achieve with their degrees.

The presentation of findings from the 2010 MBA Prospect Study can be downloaded here.

Some of our key findings were:

  • 45% of respondents said the current state of the economy somewhat or strongly influenced their plans to get an MBA, suggesting that the application boom may not be a long-term trend;

  • Schools’ websites were the most-valued sources of information provided by the school, while media rankings and MBA resource websites were the most popular independent sources of information;

  • The top three desired industries in which prospective students hoped to work after finishing their MBAs were consulting, consumer products/services, and finance.

In his presentation at MIT in June, Hayward noted a theme of growth, both for AIGAC and for the research study. “Membership in AIGAC continues to grow in leaps and bounds, and attendance at the conference rose commensurately,” he told conference attendees. “And our data grew. We had many more respondents this year — almost 2,000 — and the survey was communicated to prospective students via a wider array of consultants and MBA resource providers. We also had a much stronger response from prospects living outside the U.S., a segment of the MBA prospect pool that is becoming increasingly important.”

Admissions deans from about a dozen leading MBA programs attended the conference and provided a valuable sounding board to ensure that the research is well-grounded in the complex realities of MBA admissions. We hope these findings will help schools improve their communication strategies and plan more confidently.

Category: Higher education

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