MBA Essays: Topics from the Top 20 Business Schools – For a noteworthy MBA application, candidates need to ensure that their MBA essay questions have been answered with the right combination of articulateness and brevity. Being an integral part of the MBA application, the essays therefore require a significant degree of attention and devotion from applicants which is why understanding the questions beforehand is integral to a successful application. Taking the series Top MBA Essay Topics further, here is a list of essay questions from Top Business Schools ranked 11–20 by the QS World Subject ranking in the domain of business and management.
The Top 11-20 Ranked Business Schools
QS World Rank
University of California, Berkeley
HEC Paris School of Management
Kellogg School of Management
Melbourne Business School
The University of Melbourne
NUS Business School
National University of Singapore
The Hong Kong University of Science and Technology
Copenhagen Business School
Columbia Business School
Anderson School of Management
University of California, Los Angeles
Booth School of Business
University of Chicago
The MBA selection procedure for all of these universities is highly competitive in nature and involves a detailed application to be submitted by the candidate. The submitted application material is the candidates first interaction with the Admissions Committee and therefore is integral towards earning a university admit. Generally, an application requires a number of supporting documentation apart from professional and academic records including a CV or resume, a statement of purpose or personal statement, MBA essays and letters of recommendation.
The MBA essay topics are provided by the university upon application and the questions for the the top 20 business schools are listed below.
Click here to find out more about the MBA essay topics for the top 10 business schools.
11. Berkeley Haas, University of California, Berkeley (USA)
MBA aspirants for the program offered by the University of California, Berkeley are required to submit two compulsory MBA essays and may also submit two optional essays. Additionally, candidates may have to submit an essay concerning supplemental information in the situation that any other application constituent is not up to the mark.
The MBA essay questions are:
Tell us a six-word story that reflects a memorable experience in your life-to-date. Elaborate on why it is meaningful to you. (300 words)
Briefly describe your immediate post-MBA career goal, and discuss how it will put you on a path to a meaningful and rewarding career. (300 words)
Optional Information #1: We invite you to help us better understand the context of your opportunities and achievements. (300 words)
Optional Information #2: This section should only be used to convey relevant information not addressed elsewhere in your application. This may include explanation of employment gaps, academic aberrations, supplemental coursework, etc. You are encouraged to use bullet points where appropriate.
Application Fee: USD $200.
Berkeley Haas MBA Application Deadlines for Fall 2019 Intake
27 September, 2018
12 December, 2018
10 January, 2019
14 March, 2019
4 April, 2019
9 May, 2019
12. HEC Paris School of Management (France)
Applicants to HEC Paris’s MBA program are required to answer a number of essay type questions as a part of their program application. This includes six compulsory essays. The fifth essay question is open for the candidates to chose a specific MBA essay topic out of the three topics provided.
Why are you applying to the HEC MBA Program now? What is the professional objective that will guide your career choice after your MBA, and how will the HEC MBA contribute to the achievement of this objective? (500 words)
What do you consider your most significant life achievement? (250 words)
Leadership and ethics are inevitably intertwined in the business world. Describe a situation in which you have dealt with these issues and how they have influenced you. (250 words)
Imagine a life entirely different from the one you now lead, what would it be? (250 words)
Is there any additional information you would like to share with us? (900 words)
The fifth essay question needs to be answered using a maximum of 250 words and the three topics available for this question are:
What monument or site would you advise a first-time visitor to your country or city to discover, and why?
Certain books, movies or plays have had an international success that you believe to be undeserved. Choose an example and analyze it.
What figure do you most admire and why? You may choose from any field (arts, literature, politics, business, etc).
Application Fee: €200
Application Deadline for Round 1, 2 and 3
15 September, 2018
19 October, 2018
15 October, 2018
16 November, 2018
15 November, 2018
14 December, 2018
13. Kellogg School of Management, Northwestern University (USA)
In order to gain admission to the MBA program at Kellogg School of Management, candidates are required to submit two different essays along with an interactive video essay. For candidates who are reapplying to the MBA program, an additional essay is required.
Kellogg’s purpose is to educate, equip & inspire brave leaders who create lasting value. Tell us about a time you have demonstrated leadership and created lasting value. What challenges did you face, and what did you learn? (450 words)
Pursuing an MBA is a catalyst for personal and professional growth. How have you grown in the past? How do you intend to grow at Kellogg? (450 words)
The additional question for the re-application essay is:
Since your previous application, what steps have you taken to strengthen your candidacy? (250 words)
Application Fee: USD $250.
Northwestern University MBA Application Deadlines for Fall 2019 Intake
19 September, 2018
9 January, 2019
27 March, 2019
10 April, 2019
15 May, 2019
14. Melbourne Business School, The University of Melbourne (Australia)
There are no specific MBA essay questions which need to be answered as a part of the application for Melbourne Business School at the University of Melbourne. Instead, candidates are advised to lay emphasis on the personal statements which are required. The personal statement is similar (but not identical) to an MBA SOP and should enlist details regarding the candidate’s goals and how the candidate can contribute to the program.
The University of Melbourne MBA Application Deadlines for Fall 2019 Intake
Final Decision Notification
31 October, 2018
13 November, 2019
11 December, 2018
14 January, 2019
15 January, 2019
3 May, 2019
31 March, 2019
15 April, 2019
15. NUS Business School, National University of Singapore (Singapore)
All applicants for the MBA program offered by the National University of Singapore are required to answer three essay questions with a maximum word limit of 300 each. Additionally, re-applicants are required to submit another essay apart from the three compulsory MBA essay questions.
The questions which are required for application to the program are:
Briefly describe your immediate post-MBA career goal including your industry, function and country of choice and how have your prior experiences motivated and prepared you to pursue these goals? (300 words)
Name one current issue (economic / social / political) that Asia is facing and identify a couple of strategies that you think may address the issue. (300 words)
Define what success means to you. (300 words)
In 300 words, describe how you have demonstrated leadership and overcame obstacles in your professional, social, or family life. (optional)
The additional essay question for re-applicants is:
Please provide an update on any new aspects of your professional, international, academic or personal profile that would not have been included in your previous application. Please also explain your motivation for re-applying to NUS.
NUS MBA Application Deadlines and Application Fee for Fall 2019 Intake
1 August, 2018 – 31 January, 2019
1 February, 2019 – 31 March, 2019
16. The Hong Kong University of Science and Technology (China)
Candidates who want to apply for the MBA program offered by Hong Kong University of Science and Technology (HKUST) are required to submit MBA essays as a part of the application along with academic and professional supporting documents. The essay questions for fall 2019 intake will be available once the applications for the academic session have been made available on the HKUST website.
The application submission is carried out in three phases and the application deadlines for the fall 2019 MBA intake are yet to be announced.
Application Fee: HK$1,560
17. Copenhagen Business School (Denmark)
Apart from an interactive 10 – 15 minute video essay, applicants to Copenhagen Business School’s MBA program are required to submit two essays.
The MBA essay questions for this program are:
Discuss the relevance of "Responsible Management" in a modern business context? (500 words)
How will studying an MBA in Copenhagen uniquely impact your career? (200 words)
Application deadlines for the fall 2019 MBA intake at Copenhagen Business School are yet to be announced.
18. Columbia Business School, Columbia University (USA)
Prospective MBA candidates for Columbia Business School at Columbia University need to submit a number of essays as a part of the application process which includes three compulsory essays, a short answer question and an optional essay question. Additionally, for specific scholarship consideration, candidates are encouraged to submit essays for application.
What is your immediate post-MBA professional goal? (50 words)
Through your MBA resume and recommendations, we have a clear sense of your professional path to date. What are your career goals over the next 3-5 years and what, in your imagination, would be your long-term dream job? (500 words)
How will you take advantage of being “at the very center of business”? (250 words – video available on the website for reference)
Please provide an example of a team failure of which you have been a part. If given a second chance, what would you do differently? (250 words)
Is there any further information that you wish to provide the Admissions Committee? If so, use this space to provide an explanation of any areas of concern in your academic record or your personal history. This does not need to be a formal essay. You may submit bullet points.(optional) (500 words)
For Knight-Bagehot Fellows:
Rather than answer Essay 1, current Knight-Bagehot Fellows applying to Columbia Business School should use the space allocated to the first essay (500 words) to complete the Wiegers Fellowship application essay.
For Weigners Fellowship applicants:
What are your career goals? How has the Knight-Bagehot Fellowship affected these goals? How will an MBA help you achieve these goals? (500 words)
Columbia University MBA Application Deadlines for 2019 Intake
Merit Fellowship Deadline
January 2019 Intake
3 October, 2018
August 2019 Intake
4 January, 2019
19. Anderson School of Management, University of California, Los Angeles (USA)
Applicants for the MBA program offered by Anderson School of Management at UCLA are required to answer one essay type question and one short answer question. Re-applicants to the program also need to submit an additional MBA essay.
Describe your short-term and long-term career goals. How can the UCLA Anderson experience add value to your professional development? (500 words)
What are you passionate about and why? (300 words)
The essay question for re-applicants is:
Please describe your career progress since you last applied and how you have enhanced your candidacy. Include information on short-term and long-term career goals, as well as your continued interest in UCLA Anderson. (750 words)
Are there any extenuating circumstances in your profile about which the Admissions Committee should be aware? Please use your best judgment. (optional) (250 words)
UCLA MBA Application Deadlines for Fall 2019 Intake
2 October, 2018
18 December, 2018
8 January, 2019
26 March, 2019
16 April, 2019
21 May, 2019
20. Booth School of Business, University of Chicago (USA)
For admission to the MBA program offered by Booth School of Business, applicants are required to submit two compulsory essays and may or may not answer an optional MBA essay question. Re-applicants are required to submit an additional essay as well.
How will the Booth MBA help you achieve your immediate and long-term post-MBA career goals? (250 words)
Chicago Booth immerses you in a choice-rich environment. How have your interests, leadership experiences, and other passions influenced the choices in your life? (250 words)
Is there any unclear information in your application that needs further explanation? (300 words)
The additional required MBA essay for re-applicants is:
Upon reflection, how has your perspective regarding your future, Chicago Booth, and/or getting an MBA changed since the time of your last application? (300 words)
University of California MBA Application Deadlines for Fall 2019 Intake
6 December, 2018
3 January, 2019
21 March, 2019
16 May, 2019
Click here to know more about the MBA essay topics for the top 30 business schools.
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