BW To Change MBA Ranking Yet Again


Just before last year’s ranking was published, mbaMission, a prominent MBA admissions consultant, did an informal survey asking applicants and students which business school ranking they most trusted. Businessweek and The Economist had the weakest showing in the survey, both receiving only 5.1% of the vote compared to the most trusted ranking by U.S. News & World Report, which was “most trusted” by 46.1% of the respondents. Poets&Quants’ composite ranking, though only four years old, was deemed “most trusted” by 33.3% of the respondents.

Businessweek said it will resume publication of its undergraduate business school rankings in the spring of 2016 and will publish the list annually each spring. The magazine said it will streamline its methodology “to focus on the aspect of business programs that sets them apart from other undergraduate programs: career preparation.” The new methodology will weigh an employer survey 40%, a student survey 35%, Class of 2015 starting compensation at 15%, and the proportion of Class of 2015 students with internships 10%.

The magazine also said it will discontinue its Executive MBA and executive education rankings, and it will now publish its part-time MBA rankings on an annual cycle alongside the full-time MBA rankings. The part-time rankings will be based 50% on an alumni survey and 50% on a student survey.


For the student survey, Businessweek is asking schools to provide the email addresses of MBA candidates who graduated or will graduate between Oct. 1, 2014, and Sept. 30, 2015. To rank a program, the magazine wants a minimum 33% response rate for schools with more than 200 graduating students or a 40% response rate for schools with 75 to 200 graduating students in a class, or at least 30 respondents for schools with fewer than 75 graduates.

For the alumni survey, Businessweek said it wants email addresses of all full-time MBA alumni who graduated between Oct. 1, 2006, and Sept. 30, 2009, for whom a school has contact information. The magazine requires a 18% response rate for programs with more than 600 alumni from the combined classes of 2007-09, a 25% response rate for programs with 120 to 600 alumni from the combined classes of 2007-09, or at least 30 respondents for programs with fewer than 120 alumni from the combined classes.

A program must be rated by at least five corporate recruiters survey in order for Businessweek to rank the school.

Bloomberg Businessweek’s No. 1 MBA Program Through The Years


Duke is the first MBA program to top Businessweek’s list with as low a student score rank as 22.

Year School Employer Rank Student Rank Intel Capital Rank
2014 Duke (Fuqua) 2 22 2
2012 Chicago (Booth) 1 11 11
2010 Chicago (Booth) 1 2 8
2008 Chicago (Booth) 1 2 6
2006 Chicago (Booth) 3 1 9
2004 Northwestern (Kellogg) 3 2 20
2002 Northwestern (Kellogg) 2 1 18
2000 Pennsylvania (Wharton) 1 3 8
1998 Pennsylvania (Wharton) 1 2 NA
1996 Pennsylvania (Wharton) 1 4 NA
1994 Pennsylvania (Wharton) 1 3 NA
1992 Northwestern (Kellogg) 1 3 NA
1990 Northwestern (Kellogg) 2 7 NA
1988 Northwestern (Kellogg) 1 5 NA

Source: Bloomberg Businessweek MBA rankings from 2012 to 1988

Note: Businessweek added the intellectual capital component of the ranking, giving it a 10% weight, in 2000.


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