Profile: 2. Stanford’s Graduate School of Business


2. Stanford University

Stanford Graduate School of Business

518 Memorial Way

Stanford, California 94305

Admissions: 650-723-2766



Apply Online:

Admission Deadlines for Class of 2014:

Round One: 10/12/11

Round Two: 1/11/12

Round Three: 4/4/12

How To Apply to Stanford and What Happens To Your Application After It’s Submitted

Latest Up-To-Date MBA Rankings:

Poets&Quants (2011): 2

BusinessWeek (2010): 5

Forbes (2011): 2

U.S. News & World Report (2011): 1

Financial Times (2011): 4 (Global), 3 (U.S.)

The Economist (2011): 8 (Global), 7 (U.S.)

Ranking Analysis:

Stanford firmly held onto its number two ranking in the 2011 Poets&Quants’ analysis, though the school lost some very slight ground in two of the five most influential rankings of the year. In Forbes’ new biennial survey, which ranks schools on the basis of return-on-investment, Stanford slipped one spot to second from first. And when The Economist look its latest look at MBA programs on a global basis, the school also dropped one place to eighth from seventh in 2010. With a brand new world-class campus that makes it easier to implement new curriculum changes that allow for more small group group, the school has never been in better shape.

Tuition & Fees: $106,236

Median GMAT: 730

GMAT Range: 680-770

Average GPA: NA

Acceptance Rate: 6%

Full-Time Enrollment: 799

International: 41%

Female: 39%

Minority: NA

Mean Age: NA

Median Base Salary: $120,000

Median Signing Bonus: $20,000

Percentage of MBAs with Job Offers at Graduation: 79%

Percentage of MBAs with Job Offers Three Months Later: 14%

The first-year MBAs show up on Thursday evenings and settle into the living room of the dean’s home. They’re greeted by Turtle, an outrageously friendly black lab, who “makes his rounds sniffing and wagging his tail,” says Dean Garth Saloner. Soon enough, the dean leads a 90-minute session, engaging the 16 students in debate over a provocative issue before a casual dinner in his home.

The question: “What should Google do in China?” Over the course of the next seven weeks, the group will tackle and debate a wide range of divisive questions, from how credit-rating agencies should be regulated by the government to what responsibilities corporations have to society.

The course is an innovative small-group seminar called Critical Analytical Thinking (CAT), part of a new and radical curriculum at Stanford. The goal is to improve students’ reasoning and argument building skills so that MBAs ask the right questions, be more critical, work out the logic behind arguments, and ultimately uncover hidden assumptions. For each session, students write a three-page paper–roughly 1,000 words–that they turn in late Wednesday evening. Saloner has already read and graded the papers and knows where everyone in the group stands.

The fact that the dean of Stanford teaches two of these sections at his own home and participates in the teaching of another course, “Women’s Perspectives on Entrepreneurship,” tells you a lot about Stanford these days. The school has always fostered a close-knit community of students and faculty, known more for its collaborative style than sharp-elbowed competition, but the new curriculum and Saloner’s rise as dean reaffirms the school’s intimate scale.

“I love to teach,” says Saloner, with a slight South African accent. “I always loved to teach, and in Critical Analytical Thinking, the teacher becomes the adviser to these students. By taking two sections, I’m exposed to 10% of the class. It helps me to keep my pulse on the school and what MBAs are thinking.”

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