Ross | Mr. Automotive Compliance Professional
GMAT 710, GPA 3.7
Chicago Booth | Mr. Oil & Gas Leader
GMAT 760, GPA 6.85/10
Stanford GSB | Mr. Seeking Fellow Program
GMAT 760, GPA 3
Wharton | Mr. Real Estate Investor
GMAT 720, GPA 3.3
Cornell Johnson | Ms. Chef Instructor
GMAT 760, GPA 3.3
Chicago Booth | Ms. CS Engineer To Consultant
GMAT 720, GPA 3.31
Harvard | Mr. Climate
GMAT 720, GPA 3.4
Wharton | Mr. New England Hopeful
GMAT 730, GPA 3.65
Wharton | Mr. Digi-Transformer
GMAT 680, GPA 4
Berkeley Haas | Mr. Bangladeshi Data Scientist
GMAT 760, GPA 3.33
Harvard | Mr. Military Banker
GMAT 740, GPA 3.9
Ross | Ms. Packaging Manager
GMAT 730, GPA 3.47
Chicago Booth | Mr. Private Equity To Ed-Tech
GRE 326, GPA 3.4
Harvard | Mr. Gay Singaporean Strategy Consultant
GMAT 730, GPA 3.3
Cornell Johnson | Mr. Electric Vehicles Product Strategist
GRE 331, GPA 3.8
Columbia | Mr. BB Trading M/O To Hedge Fund
GMAT 710, GPA 3.23
Columbia | Mr. Old Indian Engineer
GRE 333, GPA 67%
Harvard | Mr. Athlete Turned MBB Consultant
GMAT 720, GPA 3.4
Ross | Mr. Civil Rights Lawyer
GMAT 710, GPA 3.62
Stanford GSB | Mr. Co-Founder & Analytics Manager
GMAT 750, GPA 7.4 out of 10.0 - 4th in Class
Cornell Johnson | Ms. Environmental Sustainability
GMAT N/A, GPA 7.08
Cornell Johnson | Mr. Trucking
GMAT 640, GPA 3.82
Ross | Mr. Low GRE Not-For-Profit
GRE 316, GPA 74.04% First Division (No GPA)
Harvard | Mr. Marine Pilot
GMAT 750, GPA 3.98
Harvard | Mr. Army Intelligence Officer
GRE 334, GPA 3.97
Harvard | Ms. Data Analyst In Logistics
GRE 325, GPA 4
McCombs School of Business | Mr. Comeback Story
GRE 313, GPA 2.9

The Complete Methodology Behind P&Q’s 2022 Online MBA Ranking

No ranking methodology is perfect. But at Poets&Quants, we’re constantly looking at ways to improve ours. That means asking the deans and directors to make comments and suggestions on our methodologies each year and adjusting our approach accordingly. While we’ve tinkered with the details of our methodology over the five years we’ve ranked online MBA programs, the framework of the methodology has remained the same.

We believe a quality education is centered on three attributes, all equally weighted in our ranking — admissions standards, academic experience, and career outcomes. The admissions standards data is reported b y the business schools while our evaluation of a program’s academic quality as well as its career outcomes are based on an annual survey of the most recent graduating class. This year we surveyed students graduating between July 1, 2020 and June 30, 2021.

Some 52 schools were included in this year’s ranking — a new record. Last year, 47 schools participated, up from 35 two years earlier, and 25 in the inaugural year. All schools met the minimum alumni survey response rate, which was a first. Among the 52 schools to participate, we sent an alumni survey to 6,824 graduates. Of those, 1,229 responded for an overall response rate of about 18%.

Two major changes were made to the methodology this year. First, we significantly reduced the weight given to average GMAT scores. Second, we included alumni survey data from both this year and last year. If a school did not participate last year or did not meet the minimum response rate, we gave it the average of all other schools. This helped to reward schools for consistency over two years and helped to minimize the possibility of wild swings that can occur if a single class of graduates were unhappy.

Admissions Standards

We reduced the average GMAT score weight from 50% in the previous four years to 20% this year. We then evenly distributed the remaining 30% to three other data sets within the admissions category. For example, the average undergraduate GPA was given a 30% weight this year compared to 20% last year. Likewise, the average years of work experience for the most recent incoming class was also given a 30% weight, up from 20% last year. Acceptance rate was increased from 10% to 20%.

Academic Experience

Nothing changed this year in the academic experience category besides using two years worth of alumni data instead of just one. The bulk of this category (80%) comes from the average score of 15 questions that are on a one-to-ten scale. The survey questions cover a wide range of aspects about an online MBA program. Graduates are asked  if they would recommend the OMBA program to a family member, friend, or colleague, how accessible and helpful professors were, and their ability to create meaningful connections with fellow classmates and faculty. The remaining 20% comes from the average rating alumni gave their schools based on their ability to participate in student-run clubs and organizations and work on consulting projects with outside organizations.

Career Outcomes

There was only a slight change in the career outcomes section. In previous years, we’ve combined the scores given to graduates’ ability to build a professional network and the quality of that network. This year, we separated those out, giving each area a 5% weight. The most (40%) weight in this category is given to the percentage of graduates reporting a promotion and/or salary increase directly because of the OMBA program. Some 20% is the average rating given to the schools’ career advising office and career coaches or mentors. Another 20% is given to the percentage of students saying their primary career goal was met. And 10% is given to the percentage of students saying their secondary career goal was met.

2022 Methodology

Admissions Standards (100 possible points):

  • Average undergraduate GPA (30%)
  • Average years of work experience (30%)
  • Acceptance rate (20%)
  • Average GMAT (adjusted for percentage that reported plus percentage that had it waived with 10 or more years of work – 20%)

Academic Experience (100 possible points):

  • Average score of 15 one-to-10 scaled questions (80%)
  • Average percentage of three other questions looking at international experiences, student clubs and organizations, and completing a consulting project (20%)

Career Outcomes (100 possible points):

  • Average reporting a salary increase or promotion (40%)
  • Average rating of career coach/mentor and career advising office (20%)
  • Average of primary career goal being met (20%)
  • Average of secondary career goal being met (10%)
  • Average rating of ability to build a professional network (5%)
  • Average rating of satisfaction of that professional network (5%)

2021 Methodology

Admissions Standards (100 possible points):

  • Average GMAT (adjusted for percentage that reported plus percentage that had it waived with 10 or more years of work – 50%)
  • Average undergraduate GPA (20%)
  • Average years of work experience (20%)
  • Acceptance rate (10%)

Academic Experience (100 possible points):

  • Average score of 15 one-to-10 scaled questions (80%)
  • Average percentage of three other questions looking at international experiences, student clubs and organizations, and completing a consulting project (20%)

Career Support and Outcomes (100 possible points):

  • Average reporting a salary increase or promotion (40%)
  • Average rating of career coach/mentor and career advising office (20%)
  • Average of primary career goal being met (20%)
  • Average of secondary career goal being met (10%)
  • Average satisfaction of alumni/professional network (10%)