The required essay portion of a student’s graduate school application offers the opportunity to explain his or her passion and provide additional background that standardized tests and résumés may not cover. However, some prominent MBA programs are cutting back on the number of written pieces that they require.
Although this may be telling of what the future holds for grad school applications, it may take a while for other schools to make the change. According to a recent Kaplan Test Prep survey of 204 business schools, only 13 percent cut the number of admissions essays for this application cycle, and a mere 3 percent reported plans to cut back on that portion in the next one.
“While it’s true that some of the most competitive business schools have cut the number of admissions essays or reduced the word count, our survey finds that the overwhelming number of MBA programs continue to see value in applicants submitting more information about themselves,” said Brian Carlidge, executive director of pre-business and pre-graduate programs, Kaplan Test Prep, in a press release.
Those who are applying to a school with a reduced essay section are encouraged to spend just as much — if not more — time honing their written section. Brevity is a skill that even some of the best communicators find challenging.
By Monique Smith