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The magazine Bloomberg BusinessWeek has been ranking the best MBA programs since 1988, making it one of the first publications to do so. Its list of the top MBA programs is published every two years, the latest in November 2010, with the next list expected in 2012. Aside from its primary list of 30 schools, Bloomberg Businessweek also lists second-tier MBA programs, part-time and EMBA programs, non-U.S. business schools and undergraduate business programs.
Bloomberg BusinessWeek focuses on customer satisfaction. Prospective MBA students can go elsewhere to find information about GMAT scores, undergraduate GPAs, financial aid or the starting salaries of recent graduates; the point of Bloomberg BusinessWeek’s MBA rankings is to give students and MBA recruiters a voice in pinpointing the best business schools. Poets & Quants ranked Bloomberg BusinessWeek as the top business school ranking.
How Do They Rank
Bloomberg BusinessWeek’s approach is innovative in that it is the first and only ranking centered on customer satisfaction. Every two years, Bloomberg BusinessWeek surveys full-time MBA students at about 100 schools across the United States, and students in Canada, Europe and Asia for a separate international ranking.
In 2010, Bloomberg BusinessWeek contacted almost 18,000 full-time MBA students in North America, Europe and Asia, and received 9,827 responses (a response rate of 55 percent). Around 10,000 responded to the 50-question web-based survey, which asked them to rate almost every aspect of their experience on a scale of one to 10. Students rate everything from the variety of classes offered and the accessibility of the faculty, to the effectiveness of career services and their level of preparation for the job market. This survey counts for 50 percent of the student satisfaction score; the scores from student surveys from the previous two years also are factored ensure that short-term issues, problems and improvements don’t skew results.
Bloomberg BusinessWeek was also the first publication to consider the opinions of corporate recruiters in an MBA ranking. It sends a survey to recruiters at companies of various sizes, from ones that hire a few MBA graduates to those that hire hundreds. They are asked to rate the top 20 schools according to perceived quality of graduates and their company’s experience with MBAs past and present. Companies rate only schools at which they have actively recruited in recent years.
In 2000, Bloomberg BusinessWeek added an “intellectual capital” measurement, which analyzes articles written by a school’s faculty members for academic journals and reviews of professors’ books published in The New York Times, Harvard Business Review and other business publications.
Student Survey: 45%
Corporate Recruiter Survey: 45%
Intellectual Capital: 10%
Student Survey: 65%
EMBA Program Directors Survey: 35%
Student Survey: 40%
Academic Quality: 30%
Post Academic Outcomes: 30%