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The mbaMission Blog

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GMAT Impact: Reorient Your View on Math Problems [#permalink]

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New post 19 Feb 2017, 10:01
FROM mbaMission Blog: GMAT Impact: Reorient Your View on Math Problems
With regard to the GMAT, raw intellectual horsepower helps, but it is not everything. In this blog series, Manhattan Prep’s Stacey Koprince teaches you how to perform at your best on test day by using some common sense.

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The quant section of the GMAT is not a math test. Really! It just looks like one on the surface. In reality, the test writers are testing us on how we think.

As such, they write many math problems in a way that hides what is really being tested or even implies a solution method that is not the best solution method. Assume nothing, and do not accept that what they give you is your best starting point!

Instead, slow down a little. First, just glance at the whole problem (before you really start reading) to see what kind of problem you have.

Next, read the problem and jot down any numbers, formulas, etc. Do not do any translation or simplification at this stage—in short, do not do any actual work yet. Just get the basics on paper, and wrap your brain around what the question is saying. You will be less likely to fall into their traps if you think before you act.

Then, reflect and organize: what have you got, and what should you consider doing with it? Do any pieces of information go together? Do you see any clues that give you an idea of how to solve the problem? Is the problem really obviously suggesting a certain path? Maybe that will work—but make a conscious decision that this really is your best path.

Most of the time, when an “obvious” path is suggested, some other path is actually faster or easier. Also, remember that your best approach might be to guess and move on, depending on how hard the question is!

Finally, if you are not going to guess, then get to it and work! You made some kind of plan during the previous step, so start working that plan!

If you get stuck at this stage, you are allowed to give yourself one chance to unstick yourself. Go back to an earlier step in your work to see whether you can find another way forward. If you find yourself still stuck, pick something and move on.

Want to see some examples of all this? Glad you asked. I have got a full two-part article for you with three different practice problems. Get to it, and let me know what you think!
ForumBlogs - GMAT Club’s latest feature blends timely Blog entries with forum discussions. Now GMAT Club Forums incorporate all relevant information from Student, Admissions blogs, Twitter, and other sources in one place. You no longer have to check and follow dozens of blogs, just subscribe to the relevant topics and forums on GMAT club or follow the posters and you will get email notifications when something new is posted. Add your blog to the list! and be featured to over 300,000 unique monthly visitors

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mbaMission

Website: http://www.mbamission.com
Blog: http://www.mbamission.com/blog
mbaMission Insiders Guides: http://www.mbamission.com/guides.php?category=insiders
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Monday Morning Essay Tip: Vary Your Sentence Length [#permalink]

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New post 20 Feb 2017, 09:01
FROM mbaMission Blog: Monday Morning Essay Tip: Vary Your Sentence Length
Many business school applicants use medium-length sentences (like this one) in their essays. Few use short sentences (like this one). Likewise, few use long sentences in their essays, even though long sentences (like this one) can often play a useful role in an essay’s structure and story.

Confused? Consider the following example:

“At XYZ Inc., I was the manager in charge of leading a team of 12 staff members. Included in my team were four engineers, four marketing professionals, and four market analysts. Our goal was to develop a new thingamajig within six months. We worked really hard over the six months and succeeded. The new thingamajig is now on the market and is selling well. As a result of my efforts, I was promoted to vice president.”

All these sentences have approximately the same number of words and the same rhythm/cadence, making the paragraph fairly boring to read. Nothing changes—the structure just repeats itself over and over again, with one medium-length sentence following another medium-length sentence.

Now consider this example:*

“At XYZ Inc., I was the manager in charge of leading a thingamajig development team of 12 staff members, four of whom were engineers, four were marketing professionals, and four were market analysts. We had just six months to launch our new product. The team worked really hard and succeeded, and the new thingamajig is now on the market, where it is selling well. As a result of my efforts, I was promoted to vice president.”

The sentences in this paragraph are varied—the first is quite long, the second is very short, the third is medium-long, and the fourth is medium-short. Sentence variety makes for a much more interesting read, and one very short sentence in the middle of some longer ones can provide precisely the kind of contrast and drama that MBA application essays so often need.

*Please note that this is a simplified example for illustration purposes. If this were an actual essay, we would encourage the applicant to offer greater insight into his/her experience launching the product.
ForumBlogs - GMAT Club’s latest feature blends timely Blog entries with forum discussions. Now GMAT Club Forums incorporate all relevant information from Student, Admissions blogs, Twitter, and other sources in one place. You no longer have to check and follow dozens of blogs, just subscribe to the relevant topics and forums on GMAT club or follow the posters and you will get email notifications when something new is posted. Add your blog to the list! and be featured to over 300,000 unique monthly visitors

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mbaMission

Website: http://www.mbamission.com
Blog: http://www.mbamission.com/blog
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Mission Admission: Should I Seek a New Position Before Applying? [#permalink]

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New post 21 Feb 2017, 09:01
FROM mbaMission Blog: Mission Admission: Should I Seek a New Position Before Applying?
Mission Admission is a series of MBA admission tips; a new one is posted each Tuesday.

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Although the 2016–2017 MBA admissions season is nearing its end, the 2017–2018 season looms on the horizon. Many business school aspirants are already considering how they might enhance their candidacy. Candidates can take a variety of steps to accomplish this, from boosting their community and personal profiles, to pursuing additional classes, to reinvigorating relationships with potential recommenders. Some even consider seeking a new position in a different firm or industry—but is this a good idea?

If you are contemplating such a move, you should first consider your tenure at your current firm. If you have been with the company for less than one year, changing positions is generally unwise. MBA admissions committees tend to appreciate consistency and frown on what they perceive as opportunism. So, if you have had several positions in the past that you held for approximately one year or less, staying put now and proving your commitment is a likely a good idea. If, however, you are a long-serving employee and want to embark on a new path, a move may bolster your profile.

The next question is whether you are considering a horizontal or a vertical move. If you would be gaining an increase in salary and responsibility, you would almost certainly be making a wise choice and would also be insulated from concerns about tenure. Admissions committees want to know that you are a rising star. If, in the next nine months, you can obtain a new role that involves greater responsibility, you should grab that opportunity. As we often tell candidates, “What is good for your career is almost always good for your MBA candidacy.”

However, before you move on, you should also consider whether you might be burning bridges at your existing firm. Maintaining your references is important, because you will need them soon for your application(s). Further, ask yourself whether you have enough time to achieve something impressive at the new firm. If you believe nine months is sufficient time in which to bolster your professional or personal narrative, then a new position may be worth pursuing. However, if you are joining an organization that has a one-year sales cycle, for example, you may not have much to offer by application time, so you may want to think twice about moving.

Finally, we advise that you not pander to admissions committees. If you think that a consulting or banking position will impress the admissions committee but such a position is not legitimately part of your intended career path, shifting into one of these areas would be pointless. Your potential move should be consistent with your personal goals, not with what you think an admissions committee wants. The committees want authenticity and differentiated candidates—not a cookie-cutter “type” of candidate from a specific field.
ForumBlogs - GMAT Club’s latest feature blends timely Blog entries with forum discussions. Now GMAT Club Forums incorporate all relevant information from Student, Admissions blogs, Twitter, and other sources in one place. You no longer have to check and follow dozens of blogs, just subscribe to the relevant topics and forums on GMAT club or follow the posters and you will get email notifications when something new is posted. Add your blog to the list! and be featured to over 300,000 unique monthly visitors

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mbaMission

Website: http://www.mbamission.com
Blog: http://www.mbamission.com/blog
mbaMission Insiders Guides: http://www.mbamission.com/guides.php?category=insiders
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MBA Career News: Strategies for Keeping on Track [#permalink]

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New post 21 Feb 2017, 13:01
FROM mbaMission Blog: MBA Career News: Strategies for Keeping on Track
In this new blog series, our mbaMission Career Coaches offer invaluable advice and industry-related news to help you actively manage your career. Topics include building your network, learning from mistakes and setbacks, perfecting your written communication, and mastering even the toughest interviews. To schedule a free half-hour consultation with one of our mbaMission Career Coaches,click here.

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We know many of you made resolutions—and probably job- or career-related ones—at the start of 2017. Now that we are about eight weeks into the new year, have you made progress on those goals? If not, do not be frustrated or disappointed with yourself; just find a way to hold yourself accountable.

Although “real life” can often be an obstacle, we believe the following strategies will help you achieve your goals:

  • Find a job search partner, group, or coach. Schedule (and adhere to) regular meetings. At each meeting, report on your progress, brainstorm ways to overcome job search obstacles, and discuss and set mini-goals for the next meeting. Mini-goals should be specific and actionable (e.g., identify three new target companies, reach out to five people in your network). State your goals out loud to your partner and put them on your to-do list and/or add reminders on your calendar. We recommend scheduling these meetings every two weeks.
  • Create a tracking system, whether in a binder/notebook, in Excel, or in an online job-tracking program. In your system, be sure that all networking outreach and follow-up action items as well as deadlines/next steps are captured. Our clients find that having all their job search materials in one place makes it easier for them to stay organized and see their progress.
  • Set aside time each week for the job search—and schedule it on your Outlook/Google calendar. Whether you devote a small block of time daily to the job search or large chunks of time on one or two days during the week, just make sure it happens.
  • Establish and write down milestones for your job search. For example, plan a time when you will re-evaluate your progress to date, adapt your messaging, and shift strategies, if necessary. We advise that you schedule these milestone check-ins every six to eight weeks, depending on the urgency of your job search.
  • Reward yourself. When you achieve your mini-goals, acknowledge these accomplishments and celebrate your progress. Most people’s job searches are more of a marathon than a sprint, so it is important to stay motivated and positive.

In addition to these tactics, we advise you to reflect on whether there are any specific roadblocks or areas of the job search that make you overwhelmed or nervous. Consider the following questions:

  • Do you know what you are looking for—besides, of course, a great job?
  • Do you know how to talk about yourself in networking and/or interview situations?
  • Do you feel that your resume and LinkedIn profile are good representations of your candidacy?
  • Do you have confidence in your ability to execute on each part of the job search?
If you answered “no” to any of these questions, we suggest that you identify ways to address these core issues before (or as) you execute your job search.

Have you been admitted to business school? If so, do you want to get a head start on defining your career goals? Do you need help preparing for job interviews or learning how to effectively network with your target employers? Or maybe you want to be a top performer in your current role but are unsure how to maximize your potential. Let an mbaMission Career Coach help via afree 30-minute consultation!
ForumBlogs - GMAT Club’s latest feature blends timely Blog entries with forum discussions. Now GMAT Club Forums incorporate all relevant information from Student, Admissions blogs, Twitter, and other sources in one place. You no longer have to check and follow dozens of blogs, just subscribe to the relevant topics and forums on GMAT club or follow the posters and you will get email notifications when something new is posted. Add your blog to the list! and be featured to over 300,000 unique monthly visitors

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mbaMission

Website: http://www.mbamission.com
Blog: http://www.mbamission.com/blog
mbaMission Insiders Guides: http://www.mbamission.com/guides.php?category=insiders
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Professor Profiles: Dan Ariely, Duke University’s Fuqua School of Busi [#permalink]

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New post 22 Feb 2017, 09:01
FROM mbaMission Blog: Professor Profiles: Dan Ariely, Duke University’s Fuqua School of Business
Many MBA applicants feel that they are purchasing a brand when they choose a business school. However, the educational experience you will have is what is crucial to your future, and no one will affect your education more than your professors. Each Wednesday, we profile a standout professor as identified by students. Today, we focus on Dan Ariely from Duke University’s Fuqua School of Business.

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Dan Ariely
’s “Behavioral Economics” class is reportedly a popular one at Fuqua—“It always has the longest waiting list,” remarked one second year we interviewed, and an alumna said of Ariely, “He was wonderful.” When mbaMission asked a first-year student about Ariely’s class, he said jokingly, “I’m pretty sure you have to snag that class within one or two seconds of it becoming available!” The course explores how people actually act in the marketplace, as opposed to how they might act if they were being completely rational. (Note: “Behavioral Economics” is not being offered in the 2016–2017 school year, according to the course listing on Fuqua’s Web site.)

Ariely is also author of the books Payoff: The Hidden Logic That Shapes Our Motivations (Simon & Schuster/TED, 2016), The (Honest) Truth About Dishonesty: How We Lie to Everyone—Especially Ourselves (HarperCollins, 2012), The Upside of Irrationality: The Unexpected Benefits of Defying Logic at Work and at Home (HarperCollins, 2010), and Predictably Irrational: The Hidden Forces That Shape Our Decisions (HarperCollins, 2008).

An alumna told mbaMission, “He got us to think about everyday things in a totally new way,” and a second-year student commented, “Everyone takes his course. Everyone. He’s our rock-star professor.” Another second year agreed, saying, “He is one of the superstar professors here. He explains more complex research in an easy-to-understand way.”

Ariely maintains a blog that can be found at http://danariely.com. He also writes a weekly advice column for the Wall Street Journal titled “Ask Ariely,” bits of which were published in book form under the title Irrationally Yours: On Missing Socks, Pickup Lines, and Other Existential Puzzles (Harper Perennial, 2015).

For more information about Duke Fuqua and other top-ranked business schools, check out the mbaMission Insider’s Guides.
ForumBlogs - GMAT Club’s latest feature blends timely Blog entries with forum discussions. Now GMAT Club Forums incorporate all relevant information from Student, Admissions blogs, Twitter, and other sources in one place. You no longer have to check and follow dozens of blogs, just subscribe to the relevant topics and forums on GMAT club or follow the posters and you will get email notifications when something new is posted. Add your blog to the list! and be featured to over 300,000 unique monthly visitors

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Jen Kedrowski
mbaMission

Website: http://www.mbamission.com
Blog: http://www.mbamission.com/blog
mbaMission Insiders Guides: http://www.mbamission.com/guides.php?category=insiders
Free Consultation: http://www.mbamission.com/consult.php

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Download mbaMission’s Complete Start-to-Finish Admissions Guide for Fr [#permalink]

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New post 22 Feb 2017, 14:01
FROM mbaMission Blog: Download mbaMission’s Complete Start-to-Finish Admissions Guide for Free Now!
For more than a decade, our Complete Start-to-Finish Admissions Guide has been an essential tool for MBA applicants, helping them to create standout business school applications. Replete with brainstorming exercises, application advice, writing tips, and numerous sample essays, resumes, waitlist letters, recommendations, interview questions, and more, the guide is a chapter-by-chapter walk through the application process.

Today, we are proud to announce that the digital version of our Complete Start-to-Finish Admissions Guide—along with the rest of our impressive trove of digital publications—is now completely free!

You can now download every single guide in our store at no cost, including the following useful titles:

  • Our 175-page acclaimed Complete Start-to-Finish Admissions Guide
  • School-specific Insider’s Guides (16 individual school titles!)
  • International Business School Program Primers
  • Individual Admissions Guides (covering brainstorming, essay writing, waitlist guidance, and other relevant topics!)
  • Interview Primers
  • MBA Career Primers
Although nothing compares to working one on one with an mbaMission professional, we are confident that our collection of extensive guides will assist you in answering all of your pressing application questions. Download them all today!

 

And for those who are new to our offerings, be sure to take advantage of a free 30-minute consultation with an expert from mbaMission’s team of senior consultants.
ForumBlogs - GMAT Club’s latest feature blends timely Blog entries with forum discussions. Now GMAT Club Forums incorporate all relevant information from Student, Admissions blogs, Twitter, and other sources in one place. You no longer have to check and follow dozens of blogs, just subscribe to the relevant topics and forums on GMAT club or follow the posters and you will get email notifications when something new is posted. Add your blog to the list! and be featured to over 300,000 unique monthly visitors

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Jen Kedrowski
mbaMission

Website: http://www.mbamission.com
Blog: http://www.mbamission.com/blog
mbaMission Insiders Guides: http://www.mbamission.com/guides.php?category=insiders
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Beyond the MBA Classroom: 100-Case Party at Darden [#permalink]

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New post 23 Feb 2017, 09:01
FROM mbaMission Blog: Beyond the MBA Classroom: 100-Case Party at Darden
When you select an MBA program, you are not just choosing your learning environment but are also committing to becoming part of a community. Each Thursday, we offer a window into life “beyond the MBA classroom” at a top business school.

The celebration of the first-year class’s completion of its first 100 cases at the University of Virginia’s Darden School of Business, appropriately called the 100-Case Party, typically takes place in October or November at a Charlottesville club. Over the two years they spend at Darden, students will study more than 500 cases. Said one alumnus we interviewed, it is “a huge party; people go wild,” while another told us that the party is significant because “it celebrates a huge milestone.” In 2011, a first year described the party in her blog about MBA life at Darden, saying, “I’m not sure if the plan is to drink 100 cases, but anything is fair game!”

For in-depth descriptions of social and community activities at Darden and 15 other top MBA programs, check out the mbaMission Insider’s Guides.
ForumBlogs - GMAT Club’s latest feature blends timely Blog entries with forum discussions. Now GMAT Club Forums incorporate all relevant information from Student, Admissions blogs, Twitter, and other sources in one place. You no longer have to check and follow dozens of blogs, just subscribe to the relevant topics and forums on GMAT club or follow the posters and you will get email notifications when something new is posted. Add your blog to the list! and be featured to over 300,000 unique monthly visitors

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mbaMission

Website: http://www.mbamission.com
Blog: http://www.mbamission.com/blog
mbaMission Insiders Guides: http://www.mbamission.com/guides.php?category=insiders
Free Consultation: http://www.mbamission.com/consult.php

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Diamonds in the Rough: Georgetown University’s McDonough School of Bus [#permalink]

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New post 23 Feb 2017, 13:01
FROM mbaMission Blog: Diamonds in the Rough: Georgetown University’s McDonough School of Business
MBA applicants can get carried away with rankings. In this series, we profile amazing programs at business schools that are typically ranked outside the top 15.

Georgetown University’s McDonough School of Business unveiled an updated MBA curriculum in 2012—and with it, a revamped global emphasis. The school’s dean at the time, David A. Thomas, announced the changes as a response to the evolving global business landscape, meant to equip students “with the skills to be innovative leaders—whether they are joining established organizations or becoming entrepreneurs.” During “Opening term,” first-year students are required to take “Structure of Global Industries.” This immersive three-week core course provides a foundation in international business that runs through the required “modules” in the spring semester and culminates with the school’s newly expanded, signature “Global Business Experience” during students’ second year. In this program, students take on consulting roles working for actual international organizations. In the spring, student teams travel to their respective client’s country—such as South Africa, Turkey, Mexico, and Italy—to gain firsthand experience working in a global consulting and management setting. After the participating students return to campus, they present the stories of and takeaways from their experiences to their classmates at the school’s Global Business Conference.
ForumBlogs - GMAT Club’s latest feature blends timely Blog entries with forum discussions. Now GMAT Club Forums incorporate all relevant information from Student, Admissions blogs, Twitter, and other sources in one place. You no longer have to check and follow dozens of blogs, just subscribe to the relevant topics and forums on GMAT club or follow the posters and you will get email notifications when something new is posted. Add your blog to the list! and be featured to over 300,000 unique monthly visitors

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Jen Kedrowski
mbaMission

Website: http://www.mbamission.com
Blog: http://www.mbamission.com/blog
mbaMission Insiders Guides: http://www.mbamission.com/guides.php?category=insiders
Free Consultation: http://www.mbamission.com/consult.php

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Friday Factoid: Acclimating to the Cold at Dartmouth Tuck [#permalink]

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New post 24 Feb 2017, 09:01
FROM mbaMission Blog: Friday Factoid: Acclimating to the Cold at Dartmouth Tuck
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The thought of spending the winters in Hanover, New Hampshire—home of Dartmouth College’s Tuck School of Business—may send shivers down your spine. But those who tough it out and embrace the cold can discover some rewarding winter experiences, such as ice hockey and downhill skiing. From beginners to seasoned veterans, participate each year in ice hockey games organized by Tuck hockey leagues. Never played? Not to worry—teams are organized by skill level, so you can find a team of hockey players who will not care if you trip over the blueline (that is ice hockey lingo—you will learn). And those who are not quite ready to play hockey can always get in the game by cheering on their classmates!

Meanwhile, the Dartmouth Skiing and Boarding Club takes advantage of the Dartmouth Skiway in Lyme, New Hampshire, and organizes trips beyond campus as well. The club’s major event is the Tuck Winter Carnival, which draws more than 600 people from approximately 15 business schools. The 2016 event welcomed aspiring MBAs and sent teams of students to participate in the weekend events, which—in addition to the annual downhill ski races—included a 1980s ski party, a hot dog eating contest, sledding, and a raffle. Attendees also enjoyed live music at the end of the weekend. All events at the Winter Carnival are geared toward socializing while also raising money for a selected nonprofit organization. At Tuck, you just might be too busy working up a sweat to fret about the cold.

For more information on Dartmouth Tuck or 15 other leading MBA programs, check out the mbaMission Insider’s Guides.
ForumBlogs - GMAT Club’s latest feature blends timely Blog entries with forum discussions. Now GMAT Club Forums incorporate all relevant information from Student, Admissions blogs, Twitter, and other sources in one place. You no longer have to check and follow dozens of blogs, just subscribe to the relevant topics and forums on GMAT club or follow the posters and you will get email notifications when something new is posted. Add your blog to the list! and be featured to over 300,000 unique monthly visitors

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Jen Kedrowski
mbaMission

Website: http://www.mbamission.com
Blog: http://www.mbamission.com/blog
mbaMission Insiders Guides: http://www.mbamission.com/guides.php?category=insiders
Free Consultation: http://www.mbamission.com/consult.php

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4 GMAT Myths Busted [#permalink]

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New post 24 Feb 2017, 14:01
FROM mbaMission Blog: 4 GMAT Myths Busted
There’s a lot of well-meaning advice for GMAT test takers out there. Unfortunately, some of the most reasonable-sounding and frequently-repeated claims are actually false. In this article, our friends at Manhattan GMAT look at four of the most common GMAT myths, and what you should do instead.

1. I need to get 90% of the questions right to get a 700.
It’s true, somebody who got a 700 on the GMAT probably got more questions right than somebody who got a 400. However, the opposite isn’t true: just getting more questions right doesn’t increase your score. The GMAT scoring algorithm doesn’t look at how many questions you answered correctly in a section. Instead, it looks at the difficulty level you’ve reached by the end of that section. You could reach the same difficulty level by missing a lot of questions, or by only missing a few, depending on where in the test you miss them and whether you finish the section on time. Check out this article for more info on what your GMAT score really means.

2. Quant is more important than Verbal.
This is a tricky one. In part, it depends on the programs you’re applying to and the strengths and weaknesses of the rest of your profile. Some schools will want a high Quant score, while others will care more about whether you hit a particular overall number. In some situations, Quant might be very important.

However, when it comes to achieving a high overall GMAT score, Verbal is slightly more important than Quant. Getting a 90th percentile Verbal score and a 50th percentile Quant score, for example, will give you a slightly higher overall score than if they were swapped. Also, many students, especially native English speakers, find it easier, quicker, and more fun to improve Verbal than Quant. If you just want to earn a particular overall score, you might get there faster by focusing on Verbal. Don’t leave points on the table by ignoring Verbal! Even if you’re starting with a high Verbal score, an improvement of just ten percentile points can go a long way.

3. The first eight problems in each section are the most important.
Like most GMAT myths, this one has a kernel of truth to it. As you work through each section of the GMAT, the test will get harder when you answer a question correctly, and easier when you answer a question incorrectly. These difficulty changes are larger at the beginning of the section than at the end. This makes it seem as if the earlier questions are very important, while the later questions hardly matter at all.

However, that isn’t really the case. Getting the first eight questions right would cause your GMAT to rapidly increase in difficulty, up to the maximum level. However, your score isn’t based on the highest difficulty level you hit. Instead, it’s based on the difficulty level at the end of the test. A strong start is nice, but spending extra time on the early problems means having very little time to answer hard problems later on. You might even run out of time at the end, which carries a hefty score penalty. So, if you can answer all of the early questions correctly and quickly, go for it. Otherwise, work at a steady pace throughout the test, and proactively guess on hard questions that you can’t answer quickly – even at the beginning of each section.

4. If I want a 700, I should mostly study 700-800 level problems.
Don’t base the problems you study on the score you want. Instead, base your studies on your current ability level. When you take the GMAT, the difficulty of the test will change depending on your performance. In order to get the test to show you tough questions, you need to be very quick and consistent on the slightly easier questions. If you aren’t quite there yet, you won’t even see the super-hard stuff – so there’s no point in studying it just yet.

In fact, spending a lot of energy on studying hard material can be counterproductive. If you see a very hard question on test day, the best move is often to proactively guess on it: missing a hard question won’t hurt your score very much, and attempting it could waste a lot of time. However, if you’ve spent a lot of time studying really tough questions, it’ll be harder to make yourself guess on them when you need to. Instead, study the questions that will really help you on test day: the ones right at or slightly above your level, or easier questions in areas that tend to trip you up. Happy studying!
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MBA Admissions Myths Destroyed: Yikes, a Typo—I Am Done! [#permalink]

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New post 25 Feb 2017, 09:00
FROM mbaMission Blog: MBA Admissions Myths Destroyed: Yikes, a Typo—I Am Done!
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You have worked painstakingly on your application. You have checked and rechecked your work. You finally press the Submit button only to discover—to your horror—that you are missing a comma and you inadvertently used “too” instead of “to.” The admissions committee is just going to throw your application out, right? Wrong.

There is a fine line between a typo and pervasive sloppiness. If you have typos and grammatical errors throughout your essays and application, you send a negative message about your sense of professionalism and desire to represent yourself—and thus the target school—in a positive way. If you have a minor mistake or too (oops, we meant “mistake or two”) in your text, you have an unfortunate but not devastating situation on your hands. Admissions committees understand that you are only human, and if you are a strong candidate, the entirety of your professional, community, personal, and academic endeavors will outweigh these blips.

Do not dwell on the mistakes. Do not send new essays. Just accept your own fallibility and move on.
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GMAT Impact: Testing Accommodations on the GMAT [#permalink]

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New post 26 Feb 2017, 10:00
FROM mbaMission Blog: GMAT Impact: Testing Accommodations on the GMAT
With regard to the GMAT, raw intellectual horsepower helps, but it is not everything. In this blog series, Manhattan Prep’s Stacey Koprince teaches you how to perform at your best on test day by using some common sense.

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Do you qualify for testing accommodations on the GMAT? Or do you think you might?

Broadly speaking, the term “accommodations” refers to altering the testing conditions for a particular student to “level the playing field” for that student. Someone with serious vision problems, for example, may need some kind of altered test format to read the test questions. These accommodations do not make the test easier for the student; rather, they make the test possible at the same level as for a regular student.

What is the process for applying for testing accommodations, and how are the decisions made? Glad you asked. I have spent the past couple months reading everything I can find and talking to representatives from GMAC. In addition, I spoke with a psychologist who deals with various kinds of learning disabilities.

All this research culminated in our unofficial GMAT Testing Accommodations Encyclopedia! I will give you the highlights here and then link to the full article at the end.

GMAC lists five main categories of issues covered and also offers an “other” category (if you feel your particular issue does not fit into one of these five areas).

The general application process is the same for all categories, but the material required to document your condition can vary, and the full article (linked to at the end) covers these details.

What qualifies… and what does not?

No easy answer to this question exists. The overarching issue, according to both Dr. Teresa Elliott of GMAC and private psychologist Dr. Tova Elberg, is a condition that results in some kind of impaired functioning in daily life that meets the criteria of the ADA (Americans with Disabilities Act) and the DSM-IV or DSM-V.

A diagnosis by itself is not enough, though. The condition must be shown to affect current functioning, and this impact must be documented carefully.

Everyone was very clear that a diagnosis does not necessarily mean that someone qualifies for testing accommodations. The diagnosis must result in functional impairment that has an impact on daily work and living situations in general, not just testing situations. This is precisely why the application asks you to explain how a particular issue or disability affects your current functioning across work and academic settings.

Many additional nuances must be considered, so dive into our GMAT Testing Accommodations Encyclopedia\ and let us know if you have any questions or comments!
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Monday Morning Essay Tip: Pluralize Nouns Whenever Possible [#permalink]

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New post 27 Feb 2017, 10:00
FROM mbaMission Blog: Monday Morning Essay Tip: Pluralize Nouns Whenever Possible
One way to conserve words in your MBA application essays and short-answer responses is by pluralizing nouns whenever possible. Singular words often require an article such as “a,” “an,” or “the.” These words can add unnecessarily to your word count, thereby cluttering your page without contributing to your argument or style. Consider the following example:

“A manager with an MBA can ascend the corporate ladder faster than a manager who lacks an MBA.” (18 words)

Now consider this version, in which many of the singular nouns have been pluralized:

“Managers with MBAs can ascend the corporate ladder faster than managers without MBAs.” (13 words)

As you can see, both sentences present the same idea, but one sentence is five words shorter than the other. Given that essays can include dozens or even hundreds of sentences, pluralizing wherever possible is helpful in meeting word count requirements and decluttering the text.
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Mission Admission: Visit Campus… Again [#permalink]

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New post 28 Feb 2017, 09:01
FROM mbaMission Blog: Mission Admission: Visit Campus… Again
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Mission Admission is a series of MBA admission tips; a new one is posted each Tuesday.

As MBA admissions committees release their decisions, some applicants are fortunate enough to suddenly find themselves with more than one option for the coming year. But how does a candidate choose between two or more schools? If you cannot determine a definitive “winner” based on specific academic or professional criteria, you may now need to make a campus visit or, for some, another campus visit. If you have not yet had a chance to visit your target school(s), we advise you to get to know the program(s) better before deciding where to invest two years and $100K or more. However, even if you have already visited your target campuses, this may be a good time for a second, more focused trip.

Many candidates go on marathon tours of business school campuses in the fall but have only a limited window in which to get to know each program they visit. After the admissions committees have defined your choices and shifted the decision power back to you, you can really devote some time to familiarizing yourself with your target schools and completing diligence that may not have been possible before. For example, as a nervous prospective student, you may not have truly pushed the students you met to define a program’s weaknesses, or you may not have felt that delving deeply into the recruiting situation on campus was appropriate during your initial visit. Similarly, you may not have experienced the social environment on campus, preferring to maintain a strictly professional profile. Although attending “welcome weekends” will allow you to meet and mingle with your potential future classmates, visiting campuses now—while classes are in session and the schools are operating as they will next year—will provide valuable insight that will facilitate one of the most important choices of your life.
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MBA Career News: Deciding Whether to Apply to Multiple Jobs in the Sam [#permalink]

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New post 28 Feb 2017, 12:01
FROM mbaMission Blog: MBA Career News: Deciding Whether to Apply to Multiple Jobs in the Same Company
In this new blog series, our mbaMissionCareer Coaches offer invaluable advice and industry-related news to help you actively manage your career. Topics include building your network, learning from mistakes and setbacks, perfecting your written communication, and mastering even the toughest interviews. To schedule a free half-hour consultation with one of our mbaMission Career Coaches, click here.

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Applying for multiple positions at a company can be either an effective strategy or a dangerous one. You need to know your target audience. Will hiring managers view multiple applications as evidence of your lack of focus and commitment, or will they perceive your passion for their company?

Before you consider applying to multiple positions within the same company, we suggest you take the following steps:

  • Gather information on the company’s practices regarding multiple applications. Seek advice from networking contacts and/or HR to understand if they look favorably upon the practice or discourage it.
  • Learn more about each position (again, from HR, networking contacts, or peers who have held the position or similar positions), and be sure you have a good grasp of the differences and similarities among the roles. If the roles are similar (same function, skill set, etc.), you have a better reason for applying to multiple positions. Understand whether the positions have the same hiring manager.
  • Research the backgrounds of people who currently serve in each role of interest at your target firm or other firms; use LinkedIn. Are there any trends among their backgrounds? Is your background more similar to one of the positions than the others?
  • Evaluate each position and ask yourself, “Why am I applying for this position?” Can you articulate clear reasons why you are qualified for and interested in more than one role? You do not want to come across like you are just applying to every job that you see without really evaluating how you can contribute to the organization in that role.

When you apply, focus on doing the following (these tips apply whether you are submitting one application or multiple):

  • Treat each opening as a unique position, each unrelated to the others.
  • Tailor your resume and cover letter for each application (check out our previous blogs on writing effective resumes and cover letters).
  • Focus on proving that you are a qualified and distinctive candidate for each role.
Have you been admitted to business school? If so, do you want to get a head start on defining your career goals? Do you need help preparing for job interviews or learning how to effectively network with your target employers? Or maybe you want to be a top performer in your current role but are unsure how to maximize your potential. Let an mbaMission Career Coach help via afree 30-minute consultation!
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Professor Profiles: George Geis, UCLA Anderson School of Management [#permalink]

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New post 01 Mar 2017, 10:01
FROM mbaMission Blog: Professor Profiles: George Geis, UCLA Anderson School of Management
Many MBA applicants feel that they are purchasing a brand when they choose a business school. However, the educational experience you will have is what is crucial to your future, and no one will affect your education more than your professors. Each Wednesday, we profile a standout professor as identified by students. Today, we profile George Geis from the UCLA Anderson School of Management.

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George Geis has been voted Outstanding Teacher of the Year five times while at UCLA Anderson, most recently in 2012, and currently serves as faculty director of the school’s Executive Mergers and Acquisitions Program. Geis is also the editor of a Web site that provides analysis of mergers and acquisitions deals in technology, media, and communications (www.trivergence.com), and he writes a mergers and acquisitions blog (http://maprofessor.blogspot.com). One alumnus described Geis to mbaMission as an experienced investor and a funny and credible guy. The graduate added that he had very much enjoyed the guest speakers Geis brought to class, as well as the strategic analysis of the board game industry, covered in a case discussion about the game Trivial Pursuit.

For more information about the UCLA Anderson School of Management and 15 other top-ranked MBA schools, check out the mbaMission Insider’s Guides.
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Why GMAT Prep Is Like Training for a Marathon [#permalink]

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New post 01 Mar 2017, 13:01
FROM mbaMission Blog: Why GMAT Prep Is Like Training for a Marathon
Our friends at Manhattan Prep GMAT often tell students to think of the GMAT as a long-distance race. Successful runners conquer race day through specific goals, consistent training, and mental toughness. It turns out that the same holds true for successful GMAT test takers.

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Setting a Goal Pace
The best runners don’t just aim for completion; they set a goal pace. How do they arrive at a specific, measurable goal? Marathon runners test their abilities on shorter races (5K, 10K, half-marathon) to determine an achievable goal for race day. Also, many runners are looking to beat various thresholds such as completing a marathon in under four hours.

Similarly, if you’re taking the GMAT, you should have a goal score in mind. You arrive at that goal score by taking a practice test to gauge your current proficiency, and then setting a challenging but reasonable goal score. Usually that goal score also coincides with the benchmarks posted by the business schools you’re looking to attend. Having a specific goal in mind helps you develop an appropriate study plan and informs your test day strategies.

Training Consistently
The majority of a race outcome is dependent on the work you put in before on the race course; all of the training that your legs have endured will push you across the finish line. For runners, following a consistent training plan produces the physiological changes necessary for improving their pace; it gets their bodies ready for challenges they will face on race day. Just as runners aim to train 4-5 days a week with a couple rest days sprinkled in between, GMAT test takers should aim to do ~30 minutes of practice on most days and schedule longer (but not too long!) studying sessions for the weekends. Why?

Well, first off, spending long stretches of time away from test material will wipe away some of the “gains” you made in previous weeks. If it’s been two weeks since you’ve looked at a Critical Reasoning question, you’ll need to refresh your memory on the various types of Critical Reasoning questions and the approaches for each. Regularly exposing yourself to the material will keep you moving forward instead of having to repeat a chapter that you previously covered.

Second, consistent studying is more manageable than attempting to cram many hours of studying on the weekend. If you’re aiming to run 50 miles in a given week, trying to complete 40 of those miles over the weekend results in overtraining and perhaps even injury. Long, exhausting study sessions leave you tired and demoralized, and more importantly, it’s very difficult to master all of the content covered during those sessions because your brain is on overdrive. In fact, studies have shown that knowledge retention improves when students space out their study time. Shorter but more frequent study sessions also let you “sleep” on certain concepts and problems, and you will find that you’re able to tackle challenging problems with greater ease if you step away from them for a day or two.

Lastly, consistent training leads to incremental improvements. Runs that felt tough two weeks ago start to feel easier because you’ve been training almost everyday and your body is making the appropriate physiological adjustments. It’s impossible to jump from a 500 to a 600 on the GMAT without making many small improvements along the way. Significant score improvements are achieved through a combination of incremental changes such as mastering Quant topics, using alternative problem-solving strategies, and improving time management.

So open up a calendar and set a consistent study schedule. Feel free to vary it up by studying in different locations, mixing topics, etc. You’ll feel yourself training your brain muscles and the incremental improvements in performance will sufficiently prepare you for test day.

Preparing for the Big Day
Before race day, runners spent approximately one week “tapering.” Tapering involves reducing training volume to give your body rest, giving you that “fresh legs” feeling on race day. Staying up late the night before your test is a bad idea. Instead of frantically taking practice tests and completing problem sets during the week leading up to test day, try to taper the amount of studying so that you’re well-rested and “mentally fresh.”

On the big day, all runners are nervous. The runners who hit their goals manage their nerves and exhibit mental toughness. They are optimistic because they know that they have set appropriate goals and trained consistently toward those goals, and they don’t let the challenges of race day get in their heads, focusing instead on producing the best outcome possible. Also, they are ready for the long haul. Instead of gassing themselves out by running too fast for the first half to the race, they conserve their energy to maintain the pace required to hit their desired finish time.

How does that translate into strategies for test day? On test day, you’ll be nervous and that’s expected. Stay optimistic, gather confidence from all of the hard work you’ve put into studying, trust yourself, and stay mentally resilient in the face of challenging problems. Oh, and if you manage to also have fun on test day, I’m confident that you’ll deliver your best performance.

Manhattan Prep is one of the world’s leading test prep providers. Every one of their instructors has a 99th percentile score on the GMAT and substantial teaching experience. The result? 17 years and thousands of satisfied students. By providing an outstanding curriculum and the highest-quality instructors in the industry, they empower students to accomplish their goals. Manhattan Prep allows you to sit in on any of their live GMAT classes—in-person or online—for free! Check out a trial class today.
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Beyond the MBA Classroom: MIT Sloan Charity Auctions [#permalink]

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New post 02 Mar 2017, 09:01
FROM mbaMission Blog: Beyond the MBA Classroom: MIT Sloan Charity Auctions
When you select an MBA program, you are not just choosing your learning environment but are also committing to becoming part of a community. Each Thursday, we offer a window into life “beyond the MBA classroom” at a top business school.

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Twice a year, in the fall and in the spring, students at the MIT Sloan School of Management organize charity auctions. Each “ocean” (the roughly 70-person cohort with which students take their first-semester core classes) selects a charity to support and identifies items to be auctioned, ranging from lunch with a professor to a home-cooked meal by a student to more unusual offerings, like having a professor chauffeur you to class in his classic car. First-year oceans compete to see which one can raise the most money, and second-year students organize a similar auction. The oceans have raised notable figures in recent years—in 2014, for example, more than $48,000, and in 2013, more than $70,000. Over the years, the events have benefited such organizations as Children of Fallen Patriots Foundation, Heifer International, Curing Kids Cancer, the Cancer Research Institute, Pencils of Promise, and the Wounded Warrior Project. Items up for bid have included a personal White House tour, a weekend tour of Napa Valley, and a week at a Costa Rican beach house.

For in-depth descriptions of social and community activities at MIT Sloan and 15 other top MBA programs, check out the mbaMission Insider’s Guides.
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Diamonds in the Rough: Business of Medicine MBA at Kelley School of Bu [#permalink]

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New post 02 Mar 2017, 14:01
FROM mbaMission Blog: Diamonds in the Rough: Business of Medicine MBA at Kelley School of Business
MBA applicants can get carried away with rankings. In this series, we profile amazing programs at business schools that are typically ranked outside the top 15.

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As the demand for business-savvy health care professionals grows, business schools are taking notice. Leading the way is the Business of Medicine MBA at Indiana University’s Kelley School of Business, which is designed to train practicing physicians to assume management positions and face a changing health care business environment. As the Financial Times reports, the two-year degree program began in the fall of 2013 and presents a new kind of opportunity at the intersection of business management and medical practice. The degree combines the basic curriculum of Kelley’s full-time MBA with specialized health care courses supported by the school’s Center for the Business of Life Sciences. The Financial Times quotes Idalene Kesner, who was interim dean at the time of the article but has since been appointed dean, as saying, “With this degree, physician leaders will emerge with the full skillset to transform individual institutions, the broad healthcare field and, most important, patient outcomes.” Part of the Business of Medicine MBA program is taught online, drawing on Kelley’s pioneering strengths in distance learning, while the other part entails one weekend residence per month, allowing for a more flexible time commitment.
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Friday Factoid: Stanford GSB’s LEED-Certified Facilities [#permalink]

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New post 03 Mar 2017, 09:01
FROM mbaMission Blog: Friday Factoid: Stanford GSB’s LEED-Certified Facilities
Thanks in part to a $105M gift from Nike founder and chairman Phil Knight (MBA ’62), the Stanford Graduate School of Business (GSB) has constructed a new $350M campus in recent years. The 360,000-square-foot campus of the Knight Management Center, which opened in the spring of 2011, expanded the school’s existing campus footprint by 100,000 square feet. The extended campus is intended to allow the use of a wider variety of teaching methods and to increase interaction among students and faculty, including those from other Stanford University schools. Forty-two small classrooms, 7 large classrooms, 276 seats in the auditorium, and 60 faculty offices were added.

The Knight Management Center is a green, environmentally friendly building, boasting state-of-the-art technology. Each classroom has three screens and dormant cameras for computer presentations, as well as plenty of natural light (in contrast to many of the previous lecture halls, which were windowless). With an eye toward preserving green space, the 870-space parking lot was built underground. The school is employing sustainable practices with respect to site development and the conservative use of water and energy. In early 2012, the Knight Management Center was awarded the LEED (Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design) Platinum rating—the highest level of LEED certification granted by the U.S. Green Building Council—in recognition of its minimal environmental impact.

To learn more about the Knight Management Center, visit the school’s official Web site.

For more information on the Stanford GSB or 15 other leading MBA programs, check out the mbaMission Insider’s Guides.
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