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Retake College Course or Take Class in Intended MBA Area?

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Intern
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Joined: 21 Feb 2016
Posts: 8
GMAT 1: 660 Q44 V37
GMAT 2: 720 Q49 V38
GPA: 3.2
Retake College Course or Take Class in Intended MBA Area? [#permalink]

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New post 25 Mar 2018, 17:19
Hello,

I currently work in high tech for a Fortune 500 company on a marketing platform and am looking to go into Brand Marketing/Management. I took the GMAT and scored a 720 (49Q, 39V), and am looking to bolster my GPA ~3.2. I majored in Mathematics / Economics but really did not do well on many of my quant courses (stats, econ, maths). 2 courses I took outside of my major, principles of accounting, I got a C+ and B- in. I'll be addressing these in the optional essay and attributing my low scores in college to a lack of focus on coursework and being involved in school functions.

I'm looking to take a course over the summer though to also include in the optional essay as a way of showing my commitment. I was thinking of taking a Financial Accounting course to show that I can do well in accounting courses, but since I am targeting going into Brand Marketing, would it be better to take a course in marketing or brand management to showcase my interest? Or taking a Stats or other quant course? In my current role, I work with large brands and was going to attribute my interest in brand management from working with these brands.

Thanks for your help!
Alex
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Ivy Groupe Admissions Consulting Representative
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Status: Boutique MBA Admissions Consulting from a Harvard Business School graduate and MBA admissions expert
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New post 25 Mar 2018, 18:42
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Hi Alex/LearntUp,

In my view, given the rigor of the curricula at business schools, it's better to take classes that show your ability to handle quantitative material (such as accounting, stats, and calculus), especially since you did not do well in these classes in college. Therefore, I would recommend taking the quant classes instead of a course in marketing/brand management. Given that you work for large brands, schools should be able to "connect the dots" to your interest in brand management.

Hope that helps!

Best,
Shaifali
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Intern
Intern
avatar
Joined: 21 Feb 2016
Posts: 8
GMAT 1: 660 Q44 V37
GMAT 2: 720 Q49 V38
GPA: 3.2
Re: Retake College Course or Take Class in Intended MBA Area? [#permalink]

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New post 25 Mar 2018, 20:05
Hello Shaifali/IvyGroupeCEO,

Thank you so much for the reply! The response was on point with my thinking, but it's nice to get some reassurance on that. Given that there are a variety of options for these courses, does the school where I take the course online bear any weight? I live in the Bay Area and am looking at online financial accounting courses from Harvard, UCLA, Berkeley extension programs, but also could take course at USF or SF Community college. Cost isn't a barrier as I will likely fund the course via the learning program from my company. Thank you!

Best,
Alex
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Re: Retake College Course or Take Class in Intended MBA Area? [#permalink]

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New post 25 Mar 2018, 20:26
Hi Alex/LearntUp,

I always recommend taking the course(s) at an institution where you will get an actual letter grade. I usually recommend the UC Berkeley or UCLA extension programs (since business schools are very familiar with those programs), but the community colleges should be fine as well.

Best,
Shaifali
_________________

Ivy Groupe, Founder/CEO
Boutique MBA Admissions Consulting

Website: https://www.ivygroupe.com
Blog: https://www.ivygroupe.com/blog
Email: info@ivygroupe.com
Phone: 646.801.5190

Click here for GMAT Club Reviews!

Intern
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Joined: 30 Jan 2018
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Retake College Course or Take Class in Intended MBA Area? [#permalink]

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New post 25 Mar 2018, 21:05
I was in the same position (similar GPA and transcript course history) as you a year ago and took 3 UCLA Extension classes over the summer: Mathematics for Management, Business Statistics, and Business Economics. Got A’s in each class and I believe it really did help in my admissions process. 2 or 3 classes seemed like the sweet spot when I was researching this last year if you were to go this route. I would recommend it to any of my friends that were financially able to do so.

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Intern
Intern
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Joined: 21 Feb 2016
Posts: 8
GMAT 1: 660 Q44 V37
GMAT 2: 720 Q49 V38
GPA: 3.2
Re: Retake College Course or Take Class in Intended MBA Area? [#permalink]

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New post 25 Mar 2018, 21:45
Hi 2020outlook,

That's extremely helpful. I didn't even think to take a Mathematics for Management online class but looking at the course now I think it would be very beneficial to boost my application. I think I'll start that one before taking the Financial Accounting onilne course.

A few questions for you that would be very helpful:
1) How time intensive / difficult were these courses to get an A?
2) Assuming you were working full-time when taking these, did you take multiple at the same time?

If you're open to it, I'd love to PM and hear more about your experience.

Thanks so much for your help - it's really going to guide some of my decisions over the next week.

Best,
Alex
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Re: Retake College Course or Take Class in Intended MBA Area? [#permalink]

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New post 26 Mar 2018, 06:14
LearntUp wrote:
Hi 2020outlook,

That's extremely helpful. I didn't even think to take a Mathematics for Management online class but looking at the course now I think it would be very beneficial to boost my application. I think I'll start that one before taking the Financial Accounting onilne course.

A few questions for you that would be very helpful:
1) How time intensive / difficult were these courses to get an A?
2) Assuming you were working full-time when taking these, did you take multiple at the same time?

If you're open to it, I'd love to PM and hear more about your experience.

Thanks so much for your help - it's really going to guide some of my decisions over the next week.

Best,
Alex

Sure thing! I will answer your questions here to help anyone else out who may come across this. You can also PM me with any super specific questions.

The 3 courses individually were easy to get A’s. The material itself is pretty easy, it is just making sure you submit the weekly assignments on time. I work 60 hours a week in financial services and during the summer the work at the office is less time and deadline intensive so 3 courses were doable but definitely had at least a couple working weeknights per week along Sunday late afternoons to complete the online coursework for the week. I’d say 2 classes is absolutely fine but 3 might be a tipping point if you aren’t organized/don’t want any stress - I just thought I wanted to do Round 1 applications so I took the full plunge into it.

In your case, I probably wouldn’t do the Math course and instead opt for the business courses as you are a Math major (even if your math grades weren’t the best) and got a 49Q split on the GMAT. Think the Math course is overkill for your specific situation.

Posted from my mobile device
Intern
Intern
avatar
Joined: 21 Feb 2016
Posts: 8
GMAT 1: 660 Q44 V37
GMAT 2: 720 Q49 V38
GPA: 3.2
Re: Retake College Course or Take Class in Intended MBA Area? [#permalink]

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New post 26 Mar 2018, 22:35
2020outlook wrote:
LearntUp wrote:
Hi 2020outlook,

That's extremely helpful. I didn't even think to take a Mathematics for Management online class but looking at the course now I think it would be very beneficial to boost my application. I think I'll start that one before taking the Financial Accounting onilne course.

A few questions for you that would be very helpful:
1) How time intensive / difficult were these courses to get an A?
2) Assuming you were working full-time when taking these, did you take multiple at the same time?

If you're open to it, I'd love to PM and hear more about your experience.

Thanks so much for your help - it's really going to guide some of my decisions over the next week.

Best,
Alex

Sure thing! I will answer your questions here to help anyone else out who may come across this. You can also PM me with any super specific questions.

The 3 courses individually were easy to get A’s. The material itself is pretty easy, it is just making sure you submit the weekly assignments on time. I work 60 hours a week in financial services and during the summer the work at the office is less time and deadline intensive so 3 courses were doable but definitely had at least a couple working weeknights per week along Sunday late afternoons to complete the online coursework for the week. I’d say 2 classes is absolutely fine but 3 might be a tipping point if you aren’t organized/don’t want any stress - I just thought I wanted to do Round 1 applications so I took the full plunge into it.

In your case, I probably wouldn’t do the Math course and instead opt for the business courses as you are a Math major (even if your math grades weren’t the best) and got a 49Q split on the GMAT. Think the Math course is overkill for your specific situation.

Posted from my mobile device



That’s very helpful. I think I’ll sign up for one (Probably Business statistics) and see how I’m pacing and see if I can overlap Financial Accounting with it as well. I hope it can make a positive impact to my app as you’ve said.

On the application side, did you address the low gpa in the optional essay as well? I’d love to know more about the process for you and your gmat score and how successful you were with a lower gpa too! If you already have a thread on this, please let me know.

Thanks again for all the advice here.


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Re: Retake College Course or Take Class in Intended MBA Area?   [#permalink] 26 Mar 2018, 22:35
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