Acceptance Rates & Yield At The Top 50 U.S. MBA Programs

Acceptance Rates, Yield & More At The Top 50 U.S. MBA Programs

Stanford MBA students outside class. Elena Zhukova photo


Yield is a number that schools never report and that U.S. News and other magazines rarely calculate. But it’s an important number because it shows the strength of a school’s appeal for the select group of applicants who have gained admission. Typically, yield is in the 30% to 40% range, and 2022 was no different in that regard.

The way it was different: Far more schools saw their yields decline, and while the declines were mostly small amounts, they indicated that admits in 2022 exercised greater freedom to choose between available options. Forty-three B-schools saw their yields decline, including eight of the top 10; by comparison, in 2021, 45 schools saw their yields increase — also including eight of the top 10. Eighteen of 51 B-schools saw double-digit yield increases in 2021; in 2022, none did.

There is little surprise year to year over which schools will have the highest yield: It’s usually Stanford or Harvard. Last year, Stanford recorded its highest-ever yield, 93.6%, and that was far and away the best of any P&Q-ranked B-school; this year the GSB saw its yield drop to 80.3%, while Harvard was one of two top-10 schools to see an increase, to a ranking-high 85.5% from 82.7%. (Yale SOM was the other, to 38.8% from 38.2%.)

More yield facts from 2022:

  • Lowest yield in the top 10: Dartmouth Tuck, 37.6% (in 2021: Yale 38.2%)
  • Lowest yield in the top 25: USC Marshall and Emory Goizueta, both at 28.9% (in 2021: Vanderbilt Owen Graduate School of Management, 35.7%)
  • Lowest yield in the top 50: No. 41 Maryland Smith School of Business, 23.9% (in 2021: Emory Goizueta, 34%, and Maryland Smith 34.2%)

Fifteen B-schools had yields above 50% in 2022, down from 20 in 2021. There were 10 in 2020 and 16 in 2019. Only five schools were above 60%, down from nine schools; three schools above 70%, down from five; and three above 80%, down from four. The highest yield in the lower half of the top 50 was at BYU Marriott School of Business, at 81.8%, though that can be explained by the extremely low tuition the Provo, Utah-based B-school offers Mormon admits. Otherwise the highest yield in the bottom 25 was at Arizona State Carey School of Business, at 66.7%. The Carey School also boasts the biggest yield increase year to year: 9.3 percentage points.

And the biggest yield drop? Minnesota Carlson School of Management, which saw its yield fall 15.1 points to 35.8%. See page 6 for more yield data for the top 50 MBA programs.

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