Do Not Ignore Short Answers!
Many business school applicants work painstakingly on their essays, prepare rigorously for their interviews and endlessly contemplate their choice of recommenders. However, they tend to leave the short answer section of the application to the last minute, at which point some will simply paste in information from their resumes or from their applications to other schools.
However, the short answer sections—meaning the basic questions within the application about your work, community experiences, hobbies, etc.—should definitely not be treated as an afterthought and should be completed with the same spirit of diligence you would bring to all the other portions of your application(s). Take the time to truly contemplate each question in this section and write out your answers fully, in sentence form, making sure to directly address the issue involved. Do not just paste bullet points from your resume as responses to these queries.
Bullets from a resume often lack the necessary context, so they rarely make effective answers for this part of the application, and they may not fully address everything the questions demand. The schools request this fundamental information for a reason, so providing what is asked—clearly and fully—is in your best interest.
We suggest completing the short answer section of your application(s) early on in the season (i.e., in September or October) or at the beginning the process, if you are more of a last-minute candidate. Doing so allows you to focus completely on the other, more intensive portions of your application from that point forward and to avoid the stress of rushing to complete them in the final moments before the deadline. It also gives you the opportunity to review your responses with fresh eyes before submitting to ensure that they are complete and clearly stated.
Every aspect of your MBA application is important, so be sure to give appropriate care and thought to all of them equally. The short answer section is no exception!
mbaMission Insiders Guides: http://www.mbamission.com/guides.php?category=insiders
Free Consultation: http://www.mbamission.com/consult.php