Toronto Rotman 2015 MBA Essay Tips and Deadlines

By - Oct 5, 10:52 AM Comments [0]

Toronto-RotmanThe University of Toronto’s Rotman School of Business is one of the leading business schools in Canada. Known for its design approach to MBA education and strong emphasis on problem solving, Rotman’s program is growing in size and renown.

My tips are in blue below.

Essay Questions:

1. Please state your professional goals and how you plan to achieve them. (Please limit your answer to 25o words.)

This is a pretty straightforward goals question, requiring a concise answer. What do you want to do and where do you want to do it? The "where" refers to industry, not necessarily geography, but geography could be a part of your goal. If it is, you should include it in your response.

Your essay should show Rotman that you have thought about your career path, Rotman's role in that chosen path, and how your career can realistically progress after you receive your Rotman MBA.

2. Describe the most important piece of constructive feedback you have received recently. Please detail the circumstance and your plan to address it. (Please limit your answer to 25o words.)

Tell a brief story here. What were you told? What was the context? How has it proven constructive? If you have room in your essay and you feel it fits with the rest of your response, include a situation similar to the one that prompted the criticism and that you handled well as a result of the advice you received.

Alternatively, you could even start with the situation that ended well, and then provide the background, including the story of the constructive feedback.

3. Reflection Question: List 3-5 attributes or characteristics that best describe you. Limit response to 50 characters. (3-5 word maximum.)

My suggestion here would be to avoid what my friend and colleague from Maxx Associates, Maxx Duffy, calls "umbrella words." These are general terms for valued attributes, but they tend to be abused and overused in the MBA application process. There is nothing wrong with them other than the reality that they are sapped them of meaning and impact. And if you use these umbella words, you will blend in with all the others who are also using them, just like one more black umbrella on a rainy day.

An example: leadership. I guarantee that attribute (or any form of "lead") will be the most commonly mentioned term. I encourage you not to use a form of "lead" or "leader." It is an umbrella word. Instead, go into the key attributes you have that make you a great leader. Those are the qualities that go under the umbrella. They will be more distinctive and more memorable.

Video Interview:

The video interview component is a required part of Rotman Admissions process designed to give all candidates guaranteed "face time" with the Admissions Committee and showcase your personality, characteristics, passions, and values.

You will have an opportunity to test the technology, and then will be asked two taped questions. Both questions are personality/values based and are designed to be answered without any advanced preparation and will only take a few minutes to complete. After completing your questions, you will receive a confirmation email and unique URL to input into this section of the application and complete the video component. Good luck and have fun with the process!

We've written blog posts on the video essay, and last year I had a fascinating interview with Niki da Silva, Rotman's Admissions Director, who provided excellent advice on the Rotman video interview. It is by far, our most popular podcast.

Here are links to these resources.

Tips for Video MBA Essay Questions

MBA Video Essays: A Conversation with Rotman’s Niki da Silva

MBA Interview Tips: Video Essays

Toronto Rotman 2015 Deadlines:

Round Application Deadline Decision Notification
1 November 3, 2014 December 12, 2014
2 January 12, 2015 February 27, 2015
3 March 2, 2015 April 17, 2015
4 April 20, 2015 May 22, 2015
5 June 1, 2015 July 3, 2015

Want more school specific MBA application essay tips? Click here!

Linda Abraham By , president and founder of and co-author of the new, definitive book on MBA admissions, MBA Admission for Smarties: The No-Nonsense Guide to Acceptance at Top Business Schools.'s experienced admissions consultants can help you create the most impressive application possible with comprehensive packages, or provide targeted assistance from picking perfect programs to designing a dazzling resume, constructing engaging essays, or preparing for intense interviews…and more! has guided thousands of applicants to acceptances at top MBA programs since 1994 – we know what works and what doesn't, so contact us to get started now!

This article originally appeared on the Accepted Admissions Consulting Blog, the official blog of


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