MBA candidates know that a rejection message is not only disappointing, but often also mysterious. The admissions committee rarely details its considerations, and the rejected candidate is left with little explanation. An article on the site Poets & Quants reports on a recent Kaplan Test Prep telephone survey of 140 admissions committees from the U.S. and Canada (including 5 of the top-10 programs). The survey aimed to uncover the main reasons for rejection.
The survey reveals that in 2013 the main reason for a candidate’s rejection was a low GMAT or GRE score (51%). The second contributing factor was a low GPA (28%) and then a lack of relevant career experience (12%). These were then followed by poor recommendations (6%) and weak essays (4%). A similar survey conducted in recent years also revealed low GMAT/GRE scores to be the main factors toward a candidate’s rejection.
The Kaplan survey also showed that 54% of the surveyed schools accepted more candidates from background in Exact Sciences (science, engineering, and mathematics) this year compared with the last three years. For example, students from the Exact Sciences make up 39% of Harvard’s 2015 class, as opposed to 34% last year.