When it came to applying to business school, most candidates said they turned to friends among their sources of support. Some 44% said they received help from friends. The survey found that 39% said they got help from an MBA admissions consultant. This finding could be exaggerated, however, because the AIGAC survey lacks a controlled sample and respondents are far more likely to have been clients of MBA admission consultants because the consultants actively encourage their clients to respond. Shrum says he now believes that as many as half of the applicants to Top Ten business schools now use admissions consultants.
Some 30% of the respondents said they were given help by a family member with the application process, while 25% gained support from a school alum. Nearly one in five applicants said they pretty much went it alone, without help or support from anyone (see table below).
The survey respondents who used consultants said they were most often advised to earn a higher GMAT score before applying (32%), apply to a school that they had previously considered (29%), or apply to more schools than originally planned (27%) (see table below).