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Harvard (HBS) Calling all applicants - Class of 2016

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Re: Harvard (HBS) Calling all applicants - Class of 2016 [#permalink] New post 12 Mar 2014, 10:22
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ElGrampo wrote:
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I interviewed in mid February, so the wait has been excruciatingly long. I have spent a lot of time just reflecting on the process and discerning how they go from 10,000 applications to 1,100 acceptance letters.


I know exactly what you mean. I interviewed on campus, and I thought that pretty much everyone I met all day was incredibly talented (and did not seem like the type to get rejected due to bad English, extreme introversion, lack of ability to articulate, etc.). I have no idea how they take a pool that strong and then cut off 50% of it.


Well judging from posted numbers and the data from posted users on this site, if they interviewed 800, ~480 will be accepted ~140 will have the option to be wait listed and another ~180 will be rejected. So that means you are absolutely right. The vast majority of the people interviewed will get amazing or stressful news on March 26th. A smaller group will get pretty sad news considering that many of them invested time and serious cash to apply and travel to participate in the interview process.

Of the ~480 people who are accepted, ~160 will probably be international students. That group is probably pretty self selecting because of English proficiency. Of the ~320 domestic students accepted, ~130 will probably be female and ~190 will probably be male. They have, correct me if I remember incorrectly, 10 sections of a little over 90 people. Dee mentioned in my "whats next" session that they try and keep the demographic parameters equal among all sections (to try and keep each section pretty similar so to create more of a standardized education experience).

All of these numbers don't account for the fact that some of these positions were predetermined by the 2+2 applicants who applied in 2012, but since there are 2+2s also applying now this is probably a numbers wash. What it does affect however is the demographics of the class. I would be surprised if they don't keep track of the 2+2s to see what industry experience they are bringing into their respective class.

So long story short, if you are coming from a traditional background, it is really difficult to get through (after all this is one of the world's most selective schools). If you are not coming from a traditional background, you have a higher chance of getting in. Ultimately, the biggest factor affecting your chances at this point is your fellow applicants. That makes this process stressful regardless of your GMAT, GPA, or level of experience.

Yes, I have thought way too much about this process over the past couple weeks.
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Re: Harvard (HBS) Calling all applicants - Class of 2016 [#permalink] New post 12 Mar 2014, 12:53
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Re: Harvard (HBS) Calling all applicants - Class of 2016 [#permalink] New post 12 Mar 2014, 22:07
On average, does anyone have any idea on how many interview invites are typically sent out for Round 3?
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Re: Harvard (HBS) Calling all applicants - Class of 2016 [#permalink] New post 12 Mar 2014, 22:31
hbsfitness45 wrote:
On average, does anyone have any idea on how many interview invites are typically sent out for Round 3?


I believe the number is around 200 (not sure if this includes 2+2), from which they admit about a 100. That said, there is a much smaller applicant pool than either R1 or R2
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Re: Harvard (HBS) Calling all applicants - Class of 2016 [#permalink] New post 12 Mar 2014, 22:42
ryansemail7 wrote:
DefyingGravity wrote:
gamesfreak wrote:
On a related note (considering how my mind keeps drifting), I am trying to figure out how has the HBS adcom managed to interview 800 applicants based on the timeslots/locations provided in the initial interview mail. Assuming 1 candidate per slot, for every slot, across every location, I got to 350 interviews. Throw in another 50-100 via Skype that is still shy of the 800 number.
Wondering if my hypothesis of 1 candidate per slot is flawed - do on campus interviews/US based interviews not follow this rule? (I know all of this doesn't matter, but trying to keep myself distracted and entertained in the process :)


I interviewed on campus and about 8 other people interviewed during the same time slot as me. We each went into a bunch of different rooms.


Same here. There was about 50 people interviewing on my interview day.


This makes so much more sense now. Off-campus interviews (atleast non-US) from what I have heard are generally one candidate per slot. That is about 300 candidates off-campus (add another 50-100 for Skype interviews) and 400 candidates on-campus (50 people/day for 8 days) - getting us much closer to the 800 number.
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Re: Harvard (HBS) Calling all applicants - Class of 2016 [#permalink] New post 12 Mar 2014, 23:00
ryansemail7 wrote:
ElGrampo wrote:
Quote:
I interviewed in mid February, so the wait has been excruciatingly long. I have spent a lot of time just reflecting on the process and discerning how they go from 10,000 applications to 1,100 acceptance letters.


I know exactly what you mean. I interviewed on campus, and I thought that pretty much everyone I met all day was incredibly talented (and did not seem like the type to get rejected due to bad English, extreme introversion, lack of ability to articulate, etc.). I have no idea how they take a pool that strong and then cut off 50% of it.


Well judging from posted numbers and the data from posted users on this site, if they interviewed 800, ~480 will be accepted ~140 will have the option to be wait listed and another ~180 will be rejected. So that means you are absolutely right. The vast majority of the people interviewed will get amazing or stressful news on March 26th. A smaller group will get pretty sad news considering that many of them invested time and serious cash to apply and travel to participate in the interview process.

Of the ~480 people who are accepted, ~160 will probably be international students. That group is probably pretty self selecting because of English proficiency. Of the ~320 domestic students accepted, ~130 will probably be female and ~190 will probably be male. They have, correct me if I remember incorrectly, 10 sections of a little over 90 people. Dee mentioned in my "whats next" session that they try and keep the demographic parameters equal among all sections (to try and keep each section pretty similar so to create more of a standardized education experience).

All of these numbers don't account for the fact that some of these positions were predetermined by the 2+2 applicants who applied in 2012, but since there are 2+2s also applying now this is probably a numbers wash. What it does affect however is the demographics of the class. I would be surprised if they don't keep track of the 2+2s to see what industry experience they are bringing into their respective class.

So long story short, if you are coming from a traditional background, it is really difficult to get through (after all this is one of the world's most selective schools). If you are not coming from a traditional background, you have a higher chance of getting in. Ultimately, the biggest factor affecting your chances at this point is your fellow applicants. That makes this process stressful regardless of your GMAT, GPA, or level of experience.

Yes, I have thought way too much about this process over the past couple weeks.


Solid Logic and very interesting to read.

I would be interested to know if they actually keep that large a number on R2 waitlist? (I would have thought that such a high number would only be for the R1 waitlist, where the adcom leaves some wiggle-room to read R2 apps before deciding on 'almost-there' candidates)
Considering they have nearly shaped the class once R2 decisions are announced, do they still leave such a large wait list based on the statistics you've read? Also would be interesting to know if R1 waitlists get either accepts/rejects on R2 decision day (hence cleaning the existing waitlist) or do R2 waitlists get appended to an existing long list.
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Re: Harvard (HBS) Calling all applicants - Class of 2016 [#permalink] New post 12 Mar 2014, 23:10
MBA2016MBA wrote:
But if you are from a competitive industry wouldn't they have already factored the differentiating qualities already (who has worked abroad, started a charity foundation, won an Olympic medal etc?) for interview invites...makes me assume there are specific qualities they look for during the interview (that we are unaware they are looking for...)

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I tend to agree with the first part of your post. I would be inclined to believe that the interview pool is crafted in a manner, that reflects the same percentage breakdown for traditional/non-traditional backgrounds as final admits. So I don't believe coming from a traditional consulting/financial services background means you face more competition for the admit. You should have the same chance of success (50-60%), just that you compete with a larger pool of interviewees.

With regards to the second part - I don't think anyone apart from the adcom team can accurately answer what are the specific qualities they look for. Must be an incredibly difficult job to gauge in 30 minutes, how a particular candidate can be a better class contributor than another person with similar credentials, exposure and mannerisms.
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Re: Harvard (HBS) Calling all applicants - Class of 2016 [#permalink] New post 13 Mar 2014, 01:17
ryansemail7 wrote:
ElGrampo wrote:
Quote:
I interviewed in mid February, so the wait has been excruciatingly long. I have spent a lot of time just reflecting on the process and discerning how they go from 10,000 applications to 1,100 acceptance letters.


I know exactly what you mean. I interviewed on campus, and I thought that pretty much everyone I met all day was incredibly talented (and did not seem like the type to get rejected due to bad English, extreme introversion, lack of ability to articulate, etc.). I have no idea how they take a pool that strong and then cut off 50% of it.


Well judging from posted numbers and the data from posted users on this site, if they interviewed 800, ~480 will be accepted ~140 will have the option to be wait listed and another ~180 will be rejected. So that means you are absolutely right. The vast majority of the people interviewed will get amazing or stressful news on March 26th. A smaller group will get pretty sad news considering that many of them invested time and serious cash to apply and travel to participate in the interview process.


Do you think it's 480/800 accepted right off the bat or 480 accepted after all the waitlists are in? I'd always assumed the acceptance rate meant that maybe ~380-400 were accepted off the bat, and another 80-100 accepted off the waitlist. Otherwise, the acceptance rate math doesn't seem to work.
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Re: Harvard (HBS) Calling all applicants - Class of 2016 [#permalink] New post 13 Mar 2014, 04:32
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Re: Harvard (HBS) Calling all applicants - Class of 2016 [#permalink] New post 13 Mar 2014, 04:38
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Re: Harvard (HBS) Calling all applicants - Class of 2016 [#permalink] New post 13 Mar 2014, 07:47
gamesfreak wrote:
I would be interested to know if they actually keep that large a number on R2 waitlist? (I would have thought that such a high number would only be for the R1 waitlist, where the adcom leaves some wiggle-room to read R2 apps before deciding on 'almost-there' candidates)
Considering they have nearly shaped the class once R2 decisions are announced, do they still leave such a large wait list based on the statistics you've read? Also would be interesting to know if R1 waitlists get either accepts/rejects on R2 decision day (hence cleaning the existing waitlist) or do R2 waitlists get appended to an existing long list.


I could be completely wrong about this, but I think the wait list from R1 is cleaned out by now either by adcom or through decisions based on the applicants. Applicants who applied R1 who were wait listed who are trying to go to business school this cycle would probably have to commit at other schools they applied to by March or, probably, many in the group began applying to other schools R2. Also, regardless of the year, these numbers seem to hold. I am sure HBS knows how many people they will allow to go on the wait list and, from there, they probably have a good idea how many of them will actually say yes.
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Re: Harvard (HBS) Calling all applicants - Class of 2016 [#permalink] New post 13 Mar 2014, 07:51
MBA2016MBA wrote:
As a caveat to this all- curveball questions, I don't think there is a right answer in terms of content, but rather in terms of delivery. Ie do you take a pause for 30 seconds to answer and get flustered. Or can you quickly come up with something in two seconds that is somewhat reasonable.


100% agree. I have read that in many cases the interview is an attempt to see how you act in a destabilizing situation. In a case study class, one's opinion is going to be challenged regularly. They probably are going to want to see how you react.
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Re: Harvard (HBS) Calling all applicants - Class of 2016 [#permalink] New post 13 Mar 2014, 10:13
Any HKS/HBS Joint Degree candidates get some good (or bad) news today?
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Re: Harvard (HBS) Calling all applicants - Class of 2016 [#permalink] New post 13 Mar 2014, 11:05
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MBA2016MBA wrote:
I agree, we have no idea what they look for.


There's an interview with Dee Leopold where she mentions a few of the reasons why someone who interviewed could get dinged. I've highlighted a few points below:
http://poetsandquants.com/2010/09/04/th ... -director/


- Character Flaws: "The first thing is to screen out, to the extent that we can, hubris and character issues. If you cannot behave yourself for 30 minutes with a member of the admissions board at Harvard and we accept you, it would be like trying to bring a loaded gun on a plane. So to that extent, we’re baggage screeners, without any thought that we are going to catch every character flaw, but we are going to pay attention."

- Disengaged Students: "We’re looking for your ability to fit into this learning model, which is not a classic academic model of you sit still and listen and take notes and write papers and spit back stuff. You come into a 90-person section and you are there to contribute. You are there not to be a bystander but are there and willing to put yourself on the line and take a risk and say that ‘I think that Sally Smith in this case should do this and here’s why.’ And you need to be able to accept pushback, to be interested, alert and engaged. I need to know you want to be there."

- Boastfulness: “They talk about their substantial accomplishments and they think I could believe that at their entry level there is no one else in the organization,” she says. “They do billion-dollar deals and all the grown ups are somewhere else. They don’t realize that the goal of this application is really not to make yourself stand out but simply to tell your story.”

- Lack of Diversity: "A superb, off-the-charts person in an interview may not get admitted because at the end of the day the interview isn’t meant to be the lightening round where how you perform in 30 minutes determines your fate. It’s not, you’re in or you’re out. You might say this person is a star in the interview but we have a lot of people with similar backgrounds who did well and we just can’t take them all. So the shaping of the class can become more of a driving factor than the evaluation." Note: this does not mean diversity based on simply ethnicity, gender, or current field. Dee specifically notes this.
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Re: Harvard (HBS) Calling all applicants - Class of 2016 [#permalink] New post 13 Mar 2014, 14:03
@gamesfreak - do you happen to know how many applicants were admitted last year during Round 3?
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Re: Harvard (HBS) Calling all applicants - Class of 2016 [#permalink] New post 13 Mar 2014, 21:38
hbsfitness45 wrote:
@gamesfreak - do you happen to know how many applicants were admitted last year during Round 3?


I believe the number of admits is about a 100. You should read Dee's recent blog entry regarding R3 myths if you are planning to apply. Best of luck - keep the faith :)
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Re: Harvard (HBS) Calling all applicants - Class of 2016 [#permalink] New post 13 Mar 2014, 21:44
ryansemail7 wrote:
gamesfreak wrote:
I would be interested to know if they actually keep that large a number on R2 waitlist? (I would have thought that such a high number would only be for the R1 waitlist, where the adcom leaves some wiggle-room to read R2 apps before deciding on 'almost-there' candidates)
Considering they have nearly shaped the class once R2 decisions are announced, do they still leave such a large wait list based on the statistics you've read? Also would be interesting to know if R1 waitlists get either accepts/rejects on R2 decision day (hence cleaning the existing waitlist) or do R2 waitlists get appended to an existing long list.


I could be completely wrong about this, but I think the wait list from R1 is cleaned out by now either by adcom or through decisions based on the applicants. Applicants who applied R1 who were wait listed who are trying to go to business school this cycle would probably have to commit at other schools they applied to by March or, probably, many in the group began applying to other schools R2. Also, regardless of the year, these numbers seem to hold. I am sure HBS knows how many people they will allow to go on the wait list and, from there, they probably have a good idea how many of them will actually say yes.


Did some more digging on Sandy's blog, and it turns out they don't actually wipe the R1 waitlist clean. HBS does admit and release some candidates in the run-up to R2 decision day - but based on previous years data maintain a 170-180 person waitlist (including R1 and R2) till after R2 admits make their final decisions (May).
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Re: Harvard (HBS) Calling all applicants - Class of 2016 [#permalink] New post 14 Mar 2014, 08:41
@gamesfreak - thanks! I had checked it out, and it is promising. My plan is to definitely apply and roll the dice. We shall see how things shake out. Good luck to you, 2 more weeks and you'll be dancing.
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Re: Harvard (HBS) Calling all applicants - Class of 2016 [#permalink] New post 16 Mar 2014, 10:24
wonder if "further consideration" candidates who made it to Round 2 are evaluated any differently than other regular Round 2 candidates.... thoughts?
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Re: Harvard (HBS) Calling all applicants - Class of 2016 [#permalink] New post 16 Mar 2014, 12:17
ganteymula wrote:
wonder if "further consideration" candidates who made it to Round 2 are evaluated any differently than other regular Round 2 candidates.... thoughts?



There probably is no uniform answer to that question (given that the reasons people were FC'd will vary).
Re: Harvard (HBS) Calling all applicants - Class of 2016   [#permalink] 16 Mar 2014, 12:17
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