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Analysis: 2015-16 The Economist Full-time MBA Ranking

The Economist MBA Rankings AnalysisIt is official – “Booth is the new Harvard.” For the fourth consecutive year, Chicago Booth ranks #1 for The Economist 2015-16 Full-time MBA rankings. Darden took the #2 spot pushing Tuck to #3. Harvard is at #4, and HEC Paris is at #5. No matter how much noise you hear about the ranking methodology, no single ranking is perfect. Students tend to rely heavily on one ranking data: FT, The Economist, BusinessWeek, or US News (for US Schools). They are useful predictors, but calculating return on investments requires detailed analysis, taking into consideration, your financial position and short-term goals, and the quality and relevance of the program.

Despite what critics complain, the fluctuation in ranking is not the result of considering just one-year’s data. In fact, the Economist takes the weighted average of the last three years: 2014 (50%), 2013 (30%) and 2012 (20%). When schools fail to provide at least two consecutive year’s data, they are not considered for the ranking. That is why, you will see renowned programs like CEIBS, UC Davis and Aston missing from the ranking. Other top schools like Imperial College Business School and Rotman chose not to participate. For brand value, averaging the three rankings (The Economist, FT and BusinessWeek) will give you a better summary of where each school stands in the eyes of the recruiters and alumni – two influencers that determine the brand value of the program. Read our review of the ranking methodology used by The Economist.

What we like about the ranking is the 35% weightage given to career opportunities and 20% on increase in salary. That is 55% on whether the school can facilitate you to choose from a diverse pool of recruiters in emerging and established industries, in lucrative job functions, mapped to the skills that you developed in the MBA program. Networking opportunities vary from student to student. Even, top schools dispel the myth that just by being part of the school; you are guaranteed to get a $130,000 job offer. Candidates are expected to network aggressively.

Most students, accepts this answer, and return to their MBA application process without double-checking the role of the career service team. Ask at least 3-4 questions about the school’s career service team even if the school representatives feels uncomfortable. Don’t fall for the glossy marketing brochures about placements. Choosing a pro-active student with good communication skills is enough to maintain the 80-90% jobs found within the 3-month record.

The effective career service team networks and attracts recruiters from diverse regions and industries. They are attuned to the changing landscape of the global economy. If all that the school does is keep the current contacts in Banking, Consulting, Technology and Non-Profit (for the internships), soon MBAs will find themselves in precarious situations in spite of investing over $100,000 in a top MBA. The Economist ranking takes care of this factor brilliantly with the Career Opportunities (35%) survey. 8.75% is assigned to the diversity of the recruiters, 8.75% on the percentage work within 3-months, 8.75% on the percentage jobs found through career service team and 8.75% on the feedback that students give about the career service team. In short, 17.5% of the ranking score depends on the student’s feedback about the career service team, a factor that should always be the #2 factor while choosing one school over the other, second to the ROI. This is perhaps one reason why the top performing programs in other ranking publication (Harvard, Stanford, and Wharton) have never been featured in the top 3 list of the Economist MBA rankings. The brand is expected to pull in recruiters, but the reality is that rising stars have started challenging the position of the traditional behemoths. Applicants have to understand this reality and dissect the ranking factors more closely, especially the Return on Investment from an investment (short-term) and a brand (long-term) perspective. Let us know if you need assistance.

The four ranking factors considered by the Economist are Career Opportunities (35%), personal development/educational experience (35%), increase in salary (20%) and potential to network (10%).

Here are the Top 10 Full-time MBA programs according to The Economist Full-time MBA Ranking 2015-16. Visit the Which MBA Ranking page for complete ranking.

RankPrevious RankFull-time MBA Programs
11Booth School of Business
23Darden School of Business
32Tuck School of Business
46Harvard Business School
54HEC Paris
67Haas School of Business
714Kellogg School of Management
818INSEAD
913UCLA Anderson School of Management
1011Wharton School University of Pennsylvania

Top 31 MBA Programs + Analysis of 24 Industries (United States)


We analyze the MBA Curriculum, Class Profile, Total Cost and Post-MBA Salary of Top 31 MBA programs in the US.

+ Industry Trends

+ Future of Aerospace, Agriculture, Artificial Intelligence (AI), Automobile, Clean Tech, Education, Energy, Fashion, Financial Services, Insurance, FinTech, Government, Healthcare, Life Sciences, Military, Manufacturing, Maritime, Media/Advertising, Technology, Tourism, Trade, Transportation and Logistics, Virtual Reality (VR), and Augmented Reality (AR).


Pages: 327

Reviews

"I have not reviewed many books for MBA Admission consulting companies but doing it now to give all applicants a brief idea on what the book covers. The book includes 31 top MBA programs - almost all the top schools you have heard or considering for your MBA application. Each chapter is categorized by US States where there is at least one top MBA program. So you have California and Massachusetts with the most number of MBA programs and several states with one top program (Washington, Minnesota, Washington D.C., Connecticut, Virginia, and Maryland) and other states with two to three MBA programs. The book focuses on four aspects of an MBA program - curriculum, cost, class profile and post-MBA salary. For me, the breakdown of the cost and post-MBA industry was useful to make my decision on selecting the top 5 programs for 2017-18. It is a fascinating read in an industry where consultants overprice for their expertise. I recently bought a 30-page guide for $49. Compared to the obvious observation in that book, the 300+ page, MBA in US - the Ultimate guide is a goldmine of information and analysis." - Verified Purchase (21st June 2017)

"I bought the ultimate guide after a friend recommended it for me. The guide covers a lot of ground on the history of each prominent US states and goes into the reasons why a certain industry emerged from each state. In addition to the analysis of the economy, trends and expected changes in the next 5 years, the book features top MBA programs in each state with an extensive study of its curriculum. Ultimate guide is an essential reference book for MBA Applicants if they want to shortlist MBA programs based on value and cost, and not just ranking. " - Verified Purchase (14th June 2017)

"Should be a required reading before applying for an MBA. School events and MBA Tours are PR events disguised as a Q&A. On the contrary, the book is an unbiased analysis of each Top MBA program in the US supported by a large dataset and historical context on each industry. The guide builds a case for indstries that are likely to emerge as favourite for MBA graduates. Thorough and a valuable book." - Verified Purchase (15th June 2017)

"What I liked: The breadth of the information. Some of my favorite nonfiction books have taken the same approach as the ultimate guide have - cover background information in-depth. In the book, the author uses parallel threads to demonstrate the history of the state and the rise of industries. Will make you think how schools thrive based on the policy set by the state. California's obsession with Technology has revolutionized how we do Business and changed post-MBA trends. Many MBA applicants will be consulting or doing marketing for a Technology company. That is one key finding from the book. The latest development in AI, FinTech, and Automation is an additional context that I found valuable in the book.

Very informative. I would recommend that you read the book at least once in chronological order before using Table of Contents." - Verified Purchase (2nd July 2017)

Download How to Choose the Best MBA in US: The Ultimate Guide
(2018 Entering Class)

Top 31 MBA Programs + Analysis of 24 Industries (United States)


We analyze the MBA Curriculum, Class Profile, Total Cost and Post-MBA Salary of Top 31 MBA programs in the US.

+ Industry Trends

+ Future of Aerospace, Agriculture, Artificial Intelligence (AI), Automobile, Clean Tech, Education, Energy, Fashion, Financial Services, Insurance, FinTech, Government, Healthcare, Life Sciences, Military, Manufacturing, Maritime, Media/Advertising, Technology, Tourism, Trade, Transportation and Logistics, Virtual Reality (VR), and Augmented Reality (AR).


Pages: 327

Reviews

"I have not reviewed many books for MBA Admission consulting companies but doing it now to give all applicants a brief idea on what the book covers. The book includes 31 top MBA programs - almost all the top schools you have heard or considering for your MBA application. Each chapter is categorized by US States where there is at least one top MBA program. So you have California and Massachusetts with the most number of MBA programs and several states with one top program (Washington, Minnesota, Washington D.C., Connecticut, Virginia, and Maryland) and other states with two to three MBA programs. The book focuses on four aspects of an MBA program - curriculum, cost, class profile and post-MBA salary. For me, the breakdown of the cost and post-MBA industry was useful to make my decision on selecting the top 5 programs for 2017-18. It is a fascinating read in an industry where consultants overprice for their expertise. I recently bought a 30-page guide for $49. Compared to the obvious observation in that book, the 300+ page, MBA in US - the Ultimate guide is a goldmine of information and analysis." - Verified Purchase (21st June 2017)

"I bought the ultimate guide after a friend recommended it for me. The guide covers a lot of ground on the history of each prominent US states and goes into the reasons why a certain industry emerged from each state. In addition to the analysis of the economy, trends and expected changes in the next 5 years, the book features top MBA programs in each state with an extensive study of its curriculum. Ultimate guide is an essential reference book for MBA Applicants if they want to shortlist MBA programs based on value and cost, and not just ranking. " - Verified Purchase (14th June 2017)

"Should be a required reading before applying for an MBA. School events and MBA Tours are PR events disguised as a Q&A. On the contrary, the book is an unbiased analysis of each Top MBA program in the US supported by a large dataset and historical context on each industry. The guide builds a case for indstries that are likely to emerge as favourite for MBA graduates. Thorough and a valuable book." - Verified Purchase (15th June 2017)

"What I liked: The breadth of the information. Some of my favorite nonfiction books have taken the same approach as the ultimate guide have - cover background information in-depth. In the book, the author uses parallel threads to demonstrate the history of the state and the rise of industries. Will make you think how schools thrive based on the policy set by the state. California's obsession with Technology has revolutionized how we do Business and changed post-MBA trends. Many MBA applicants will be consulting or doing marketing for a Technology company. That is one key finding from the book. The latest development in AI, FinTech, and Automation is an additional context that I found valuable in the book.

Very informative. I would recommend that you read the book at least once in chronological order before using Table of Contents." - Verified Purchase (2nd July 2017)

Download How to Choose the Best MBA in US: The Ultimate Guide
(2018 Entering Class)

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