The Booth School of Business is one of the most prestigious schools in the entire world. It boasts famous business leaders and Nobel laureates among its alumni and staff. Securing a place at this institution will make you one of the most desirable graduates in the MBA market. The only catch is securing that place.
A world-class institution means world-class applicants, and there are thousands of them. Booth regularly draws in the best and brightest of the business community and selects the best few into its programs.
This article will explore the Booth Business School, how to get into Chicago Booth’s MBA program, and how doing so could benefit you and your career.
About the Booth School of Business
To give you a good idea of what the Booth School of Business stands for, let’s go right to the source by looking at their mission statement:
“At Booth, our mission is to create knowledge with enduring impact, and influence and educate current and future leaders. Leaders like you.”
Although it is not one of the Ivy League Business Schools, the Booth School of Business can help you become the best business leader you can be, enhancing your abilities and career significantly.
It is a part of the prestigious M7 Business Schools or ‘magic 7’ group, a collection of some of the best business schools in the world. It consistently ranks as one of the finest business education institutions in the world by top business publications like Forbes and US news.
Graduating with an MBA from the Booth MBA program would give a significant boost to your career and an almost guaranteed salary of hundreds of thousands of dollars.
The school is probably best known for its emphasis on quantitative methods, with 31 Nobel laureates in the field of economics within its faculty, researchers, and alumni.
Working with data is a huge part of the Booth experience. Their programs are great for the number-oriented and for those looking to get into the fields of finance or economics.
If you think this learning style is a match for you and your career ambitions, the prestige of having an MBA from the Booth School of Business is a sure way to give yourself an edge in a data-focused industry.
The Booth School of Business offers full-time, part-time, and executive MBA courses to suit any needs or capabilities of their potential students.
Flexibility is a vital part of the Booth educational experience, with their present programs only including one mandatory class (Leadership Effectiveness and Development) for all of their students.
This means you are more or less free to decide your priorities as a student at Booth, but it could also be a drawback. If you are less certain of your career path and how a Booth MBA would benefit you, the wide degree of choice might leave you lost.
If you want to know more about the character of the Booth School of Business and whether it would be the right fit for you, check out our complete guide to the school.
What Is the Level of Competition Like at Booth School of Business?
As one of the most prestigious institutions in the world, Chicago Booth does not make it easy to get admitted. The school wants to only take in the best students available, meaning only a select few of thousands of applicants are accepted into their programs each year.
But being among those successful few will pay dividends, with MBA graduates from the Booth School of Business earning an average salary of $150,000 after their studies. Later in this article, we will discuss the process and requirements of applying to the Booth School of
Business, but first, let’s take a look at the Booth class profile to give you an idea of the typical Booth MBA student.
The Booth School of Business Class Profile
Very appropriately for the Booth School of Business, we’re going to be diving into the numbers here.
As you can see, Booth has a low acceptance rate and a small class size. And this exclusive club is populated by some of the most competitive candidates around, with an average GMAT score of 724 and an average GPA of 3.6.
Booth students’ average age and work experience are typical of other M7 business schools, with many entering in their late 20s. Most also have applied after having gained a good number of years of hands-on business experience.
Most accepted candidates have a background in consulting, financial services, or technology, comprising 25, 20, and 11 percent of 2020’s intake, respectively. But this doesn’t mean that they exclusively take in students from these industries!
Booth doesn’t require specific industry backgrounds from its candidates and accepts a wide variety of students from a wide variety of both personal and professional backgrounds.
The majors of those accepted to Booth are just as diverse, ranging from psychology to engineering. The majority of Booth’s 2020 class completed their undergraduate degrees in business (27.4%), though many completed both economics (23.5%) and engineering (23.8%).
Booth’s unique learning environment allows you to select “courses and experiences based on your interests while building critical leadership skills that are transferable across any industry.”
Let’s take a look at the Booth School of Business acceptance rate to understand how competitive its full-time MBA program is.
Booth School of Business Acceptance Rate
Of the 5,037 applications Booth received in 2020, it admitted 620 full-time MBA students. This means that the Chicago Booth acceptance rate is 12.3%.
Complete Requirements and How to Apply
The Booth MBA program application process varies according to the specific program you are applying for at the Booth School of Business. So, try and assess which course would be best for you before starting your application process.
Let’s explore how to get into business school and, more specifically, the Chicago Booth MBA.
What Is Booth Looking For?
Booth will evaluate your application in three areas:
Booth seeks applicants “who have both the ability and desire to thrive within a challenging and stimulating environment.” Alongside your communication skills, Booth highly values qualities like intellectual curiosity and academic preparedness.
You can evidence these skills in your application in several ways:
- Achieve high GMAT or GRE scores
- Receive academic recognition
- Obtain merit-based scholarships or professional certifications
- Ask questions or engage in debates
Booth is a community, and it wants to admit candidates who will fit into it. As such, it seeks applicants with a unique perspective who demonstrate desirable qualities like:
- Excellent interpersonal skills
- Collaboration and teamwork
- Respect for others
If you can point to several of these qualities in your essays, interview, or extracurricular activities, you will emphasize that you will fit into Booth’s community.
Booth wants you to demonstrate excellent professional attributes like resourcefulness and time-management skills. Additionally, if you can show that you have progressed early in your career and have a track record of success, you will stand out to the admissions committee.
How to Apply to Booth’s Full-time MBA
Applications to the Booth School of Business usually take place in three rounds that stretch from September to May. For each round of applications, you will know if your application was successful around two months later.
However, you’ll need to register with Booth’s online application service to get started. After you have created your account, you’ll need to satisfy the Chicago Booth MBA requirements, which include:
- Undergraduate degree from an accredited US college
- Business school resume
- Two letters of recommendation
- GMAT or GRE scores
- English language proficiency test scores (if applicable)
- $250 application fee
- Essay questions
Please note that there may be slightly different Chicago Booth MBA requirements for transfer and international applicants.
Transcripts, Resume, and Test Scores
You’ll generally need the work experience and GMAT scores that we have been discussing above to improve your MBA profile and give yourself a competitive chance at acceptance. These will usually be given in the form of a transcript of your grades, a resume explaining your relevant work experience, and your test scores.
Letters of Recommendation
It is in your letters of recommendation that the school will get the best sense of your personality, a vital part of the application process. Booth requires you to attach two letters of recommendation to your MBA application.
One letter should come from a supervisor, and the other can “come from another professional contact.” Booth states that the second recommender can be anyone who adds “new and valuable insight to your candidacy.”
However, you should ideally choose someone that can speak about your skill set outside of the workplace. If you can, speak with your recommender to mention things they should keep in mind when they’re writing your letter.
Your test scores and work experience will provide a quantitative assessment of your career and abilities thus far. However, your Booth MBA essays provide an opportunity to connect with Booth’s admissions committee on a personal level.
Every MBA candidate must answer the following two prompts:
- “How will a Booth MBA help you achieve your immediate and long-term post-MBA career goals? (Minimum 250 words, no maximum.)”
- “An MBA is as much about personal growth as it is about professional development. In addition to sharing your experience and goals in terms of career, we’d like to learn more about you outside of the office. Use this opportunity to tell us something about who you are… (Minimum 250 words, no maximum.)”
You can also choose to answer an additional question, although it is completely optional. The optional essay question reads, “Is there any unclear information in your application that needs further explanation? (Maximum 300 words.)
Writing a killer MBA essay is a brilliant way to speak directly to Booth’s admissions committee about your strengths. So, dedicate a serious amount of time to perfecting your responses.
We’ll be providing more direct advice on making a successful application to the Booth School of Business. Still, it should suffice to say here that the essay and letters of recommendation form a vital part of the school’s assessment of your fit for their programs.
If Booth likes your application, they will invite you for an MBA interview. Interview preparation is key; take the time to study commonly asked MBA interview questions, and have several questions ready for your interviewer.
Top Tips on How to Get Into Booth School of Business
There are several ways to boost your chances of getting into the Booth School of Business.
1. Obtain Competitive Test Scores
Make sure your test scores are competitive to show the admissions committee your capabilities and commitment to learning.
The average GMAT score for a Booth School of Business student is 724, and the average GPA is 3.6 — if your scores are lower than this, it doesn’t mean you have no chance of acceptance. It’s not a Booth application MBA requirement; it just shows the typical student that the school admits.
So, taking the time and effort to improve your scores to get into the bracket of typically successful applicants will not guarantee you acceptance. Still, it is one of the clearest means to gauge the likelihood of your success when applying and gives a clear way to improve your application.
Your Work Experience Matters
As you can see from the tables discussed in this article already, the Booth School of Business generally expects their students to have a significant amount of business experience before they apply.
In the case of the executive MBA, you could expect decades of experience alongside being a currently practicing businessperson. As such, making sure you have the work experience required before applying is a must.
The Booth MBA program is not designed to necessarily benefit a fresh-faced student just coming from their Economics 101 course. It is designed to build on the knowledge and experience you already have from several years of work and develop those skills to make you a successful business leader.
Write Stellar Admissions Essays
Another good way to improve your chances of admission is by improving your entrance essay.
Aside from test scores and work experience, the Booth School of Business will be looking at the character of its applicants to try and assess whether they will be a good match for their business education experience.
For this reason, your entrance essay, as one of the only times you can express your personality before interviews, offers a crucial opportunity to express yourself to the school and why you would be a great fit for their MBA program.
Something that is vital to your application to the Booth School of Business that you should be trying to express in your entrance essay is your motivation for attending.
The school will be looking for students that will demonstrably benefit from their MBA courses, so try and show how your desired course would enhance your career. Read this short passage from Rachel Waites, the Director of Recruitment and Admissions for the Executive MBA program at the Booth School of Business:
“... motivation is very important – we want to understand why someone has chosen Chicago Booth, how they plan to fit the program around their work and family life and how the executive MBA can help them meet their mid and long-term goals.”
Your reasons for attending are a vital part of the considerations that go into recruitment at the school. You need a clear picture of how attendance will benefit your career so you can present that picture convincingly to people like Ms. Waites.
You also need to choose the right course for you. The full-time, part-time, and executive MBA programs are suited to very different candidates with different personal situations, so assessing which one would best fit you before you apply is an absolute necessity.
How Good Is the Booth School of Business?
As we’ve already discussed, the Booth School of Business is considered one of the top institutions not only in the US, but in the world. It is a part of the prestigious M7 group and is regularly ranked highly by major business education publications.
However, its quality and usefulness for your career will come down to your unique needs. We’ve mentioned the quantitative emphasis of Booth — this is great if you are looking for a data-heavy MBA program and career.
To assess the quality of the Booth School of Business for you and your career, try looking at the rankings and specialties of the school and comparing them to your own needs. After all, Booth isn’t the only business school out there.
If you aren’t looking for the specializations Booth offers, there are plenty of other world-class MBA programs on offer at other institutions that would benefit you and your career.
FAQs: Getting Into Chicago Booth
You have questions, and we have the answers. See below.
1. How much does it cost to attend the Booth School of Business?
The average per-year cost of tuition for Booth is around $70,000.
However, the school estimates the total per-year cost of their MBA program, including health insurance, accommodation, and other living necessities, to total at around $110,000 on average.
2. Does the Booth School of Business offer financial aid?
Booth offers a range of scholarships and financial aid, depending on your circumstances and the course you are applying for.
You can find more information on this topic here.
3. What is the Booth School of Business known for?
Booth is known for its emphasis on quantitative methods, boasting more Nobel laureates in economics than any other business education institution.
This means that almost every class at the school will have discussions and learning using data at its core.
4. What is the Booth MBA GMAT range?
The booth MBA GMAT range is 590 to 760.
5. What is the Booth MBA acceptance rate?
The Booth MBA acceptance rate is 12.3%.
6. How diverse is the class at the Booth School of Business?
Booth’s most recent class has 38% international students, 43% US ethnic minority students, and 38% women.
If you would like a more detailed breakdown of the class profile at the Booth School of Business, take a look at the school website.
7. How long is a Booth MBA program?
For the full-time and executive MBA programs, the typical study time is 21 months. For the evening or weekend MBA programs, two to three years is typical.
Unlock Your Future by Getting Into the Booth MBA Program
The Booth School of Business is one of the most prestigious business education institutions in the world, so you are no doubt going to have a lot of competition when applying.
But successfully applying and securing a Booth MBA for yourself would hugely benefit your career. This is not only in terms of increased salary but also in the recognition that you would undoubtedly receive from having attended such an esteemed institution.
The key emphasis of Booth is on quantitative methods and study, although it’s still a world-class institution in nearly every other area. However, if you are choosing between other top-grade schools and aren’t interested in getting that quantitative emphasis, Booth might not be for you.
If you want to apply, this article should give you a good breakdown of the process and typical requirements that you should expect. None of the average scores or qualities should make you feel disqualified from applying.
More than anything, the Booth School of Business is looking for exceptional business leaders to form their MBA students. Measures like GMAT scores are only one of the factors they use in their assessment.
If you believe you are a candidate fit to study at one of the best business education institutions in the world, demonstrating your personality and motivation in your college essay and letters of recommendation should earn you your place.