Happy New Year! Are you planning to apply to business school? Here are my predictions about 2018-2019 MBA admissions trends.

  • More Targeted School Lists

Increasingly, I hear from my clients that they are only interested in a small number of highly selective schools. I expect this pattern to continue, which means that the top 10-15 schools will become even harder to get into. It also means that there are terrific opportunities to get into fantastic programs that are ranked in the next tier. My advice: Apply broadly, and don’t become overly focused on the rankings. ROI is a very personal calculation, and there are life-changing opportunities at business schools outside of the M7.

  • Reapplicants

Unsurprisingly, the fact that people are applying to fewer schools that are harder to get into means that there will be more reapplicants in the pool. Many schools look favorably upon reapplicants, as long as your first application was solid and you can demonstrate growth. I worked with many reapplicants in the early round, all of whom got into at least one of their target schools. Don’t give up!

  • Fewer International Students

Especially at American schools that are located in rural areas and the South, I expect to see fewer international students apply. This does create opportunities for international applicants, and for domestic candidates with diverse global perspectives.

  • Early Action, Women and the GRE continue to gain traction

As in previous years, I expect early action to continue to grow. There are real advantages to applying early, which helps you get in and get financing. (My early clients earned more than 1.86 million dollars in scholarships this year, and were admitted to HBS, Stanford, Wharton, Booth, Kellogg, Sloan, Tuck, Darden, Stern, Ross, Cornell, UCLA and more.) Many schools are getting closer to gender parity, and I expect to see continued progress in this arena. Finally, the GRE continues to grow in popularity. If the GMAT does not reflect your potential definitely consider switching exams.

As always, the key to leveraging these MBA admissions trends and maximizing your candidacy is to start now – the early rounds will be here before you know it!

 

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Karen Marks

Karen has more than 12 years of experience evaluating candidates for admission to Dartmouth College and to the Tuck School of Business at Dartmouth. Since founding North Star Admissions Consulting in 2012, she has helped applicants gain admission to the nation’s top schools, including Stanford, Harvard, Yale, Wharton, MIT, Tuck, Columbia, Kellogg, Booth, Haas, Duke, Johnson, Ross, NYU, UNC, UCLA, Georgetown and more. Clients have been awarded more than 20 million dollars in scholarships, and more than 97% have gotten into one of their top choice schools.