There are so many elements that go into choosing the best MBA program for you. The guide below will lead the way:
A is for Academics
What is your preferred curriculum structure? Which is the best teaching style for you? Does your target school have strengths in fields that match your goals and interests? Do you prefer a more technical or more experiential program? Are you looking for a school with a strong global focus? How important is the option to study abroad? Will the program allow you to take classes in other schools at the university or at other universities?
B is for Brand
How important is brand to you? Do you need a top 10 program? Or will a top 20 or 30 school work for you? Do your post-MBA goals require the reputation of a prestigious program?
C is for Career Services
How active, accessible, and successful is the school’s career services department? What is their track record regarding securing internships and jobs in your area of interest? Does the school have an active alumni network?
D is for Direction
Will your target program point you in the right direction to help you achieve your career goals? Are its goals and mission aligned with yours?
E is for Environment and Extracurricular Activities
What sort of community are you seeking? Do you want a b-school with small, close-knit classes? How important is classroom diversity? Are there cultural or religious events that are important to you? Does the school have activities that interest you? If it doesn’t, how easy is it to start your own club or organization?
F is for Faculty
Does the school have a diverse and well-respected faculty? Are there specific faculty members that do research in an area that’s particularly important to you?
G is for Geography
How important is location to you? Do you want a big city or a small town? A large campus or a small one? A school that’s near your hometown or one that’s on a different continent?
NOTE: In addition to these considerations above, applicants also need to compare their qualifications to those of admitted applicants and see if they are in the ballpark. Just because you love every single detail of Wharton doesn’t mean that you are competitive. Use A-G above and balance them with a cold, objective assessment of where you have a reasonable chance of acceptance. (Hint: Accepted can help with that assessment.)
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This article originally appeared on the Accepted Admissions Consulting Blog, the official blog of Accepted.com.