Walter A. Haas School of Business
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How To Get Into HAAS MBA at UC Berkeley - Complete Guide

February 28, 2024
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Haas MBA at UC Berkeley Acceptance Rate: 15%Haas MBA at UC Berkeley Admissions StatisticsWhat is Haas MBA at UC Berkeley Looking For In Applicants?Haas MBA at UC Berkeley Admissions RequirementsHow to Improve Your Chances of Getting Into Haas MBAHaas MBA at UC Berkeley Essay PromptsHaas MBA at UC Berkeley InterviewFAQs

The prestigious Haas School of Business at UC Berkeley ranks #11 on U.S. News and World Report's list of top business schools. Over 110 years of pioneering leadership in business education has cemented Haas' reputation for innovation

Nestled in the Bay Area startup scene, Haas leverages its Silicon Valley connections to provide unparalleled networking opportunities.

Haas MBA admissions is no easy feat. But developing a stellar application that showcases your unique experiences and passions can help you stand out from the ultra-competitive applicant pool. This guide will show you how to apply to business school, outline several Haas tips and tricks to improve your MBA profile, and answer all of your questions.

Haas MBA at UC Berkeley Acceptance Rate: 15%

Haas School of Business

Haas has an exceptionally competitive acceptance rate of only 15% for full-time MBA applicants. This means that for every 100 students that apply, only around 15 are admitted. 

Year Acceptance Rate
2023 20%
2022 19.6%
2021 18%
2020 24%

How Hard Is It to Get Into Haas MBA at UC Berkeley?

It is exceptionally difficult to get into the Haas MBA program, which has a competitive acceptance rate typically around 15%. Admission is highly selective not only due to low admit rates but also because of Haas’ rigorous curriculum and emphasis on cultural fit. 

Haas MBA at UC Berkeley Admissions Statistics

Understanding key admissions statistics can provide helpful benchmarks to gain admission to Haas MBA.

Haas MBA at UC Berkeley Average GPA: 3.8

The average GPA of students admitted to the Haas full-time MBA program is 3.8. While a higher GPA is preferable, admissions will consider the rigor of your college major and institution.

Haas MBA at UC Berkeley Average GMAT Score: 733

The average GMAT score for the Haas entering full-time MBA class is 733, with the middle 80% of scores ranging from 680 to 770. While the GMAT is important for assessing quantitative skills, it's just one component among many holistic factors.

Haas MBA at UC Berkeley Average GRE Score: 323

Applicants can also submit GRE scores, with an average of 161 in Verbal and 163 in Quantitative, equating to a 323 GMAT score. Haas claims to have no preference between the GRE or GMAT.

Haas MBA at UC Berkeley Average Work Experience: 6 years

The average work experience for students in the MBA program is six years, with most students falling between two to eight years of experience. Work experience provides context for evaluating an applicant's leadership ability, career progression, and potential for impact.

What is Haas MBA at UC Berkeley Looking For In Applicants?

Haas seeks students who demonstrate alignment with their Defining Principles: Question the Status Quo, Confidence Without Attitude, Students Always, and Beyond Yourself. 

Haas also looks for students who fit certain criteria:

  • First, applicants must demonstrate an ability to handle Haas' rigorous academic curriculum, which emphasizes analytical skills and quantitative coursework. 
  • Second, Haas seeks well-rounded students who excel both inside and outside the classroom across diverse experiences. 
  • Finally, the admissions committee places considerable weight on cultural fit - they wish to form a collaborative cohort with shared values around confidence without attitude, students always, and beyond yourself.
Academic Very Important Important Considered Not Considered
Rigor of secondary school record X
Class rank X
Academic GPA X
Standardized test scores X
Application essay X
Recommendation(s) X

Non-Academic Very Important Important Considered Not Considered
Interview X
Extracurricular activities X
Talent/ability X
Character/personal qualities X
First generation X
Alumni/ae relation X
Geographical residence X
State residency X
Religious affiliation/commitment X
Racial/ethnic status X
Volunteer work X
Work experience X
Level of applicant’s interest X

Haas MBA at UC Berkeley Admissions Requirements

To gain acceptance to the MBA program at Haas, applicants must submit:

All elements must conform to strict formatting and length guidelines listed on Haas' website.

Haas MBA at UC Berkeley Application Deadlines

Haas offers three admissions rounds:

Application Step Deadline Decision
Round 1 September 14 December 7
Round 2 January 4 March 21
Round 3 March 28 May 2

No exceptions are made for late applications. Students may apply during any round of applications to be accepted into the MBA program at Haas.

Haas MBA at UC Berkeley Regular Decision Deadline

The first regular decision deadline to aim for is January 4. If this deadline is missed, students can aim to apply before March 28, for the last round of applications.

Haas MBA at UC Berkeley Early Decision Deadline

The early decision deadline for Haas MBA is September 14. To get a competitive edge on admission, students should aim for this application.

How to Improve Your Chances of Getting Into Haas MBA

Getting into Haas is no easy feat. Beyond sky-high test scores and grades, you need to convince Adcom that Haas is the one and only place for you. To stand out, go beyond the generic application boosters and get creative.

Here are 11 tips for getting into the Haas MBA program:

  1. Show, don't tell. Provide concrete examples and stories to demonstrate your embodiment of Haas' defining principles like confidence without attitude. Don't just write platitudes.
  2. Get vulnerable in your essays and interview. Admit failures to show self-awareness and resilience. Ask bold questions about their DEI plans to show authentic engagement.
  3. Shadow Haas alumni at their companies to get insider perspectives into student life. Attend classes and student club meetings when visiting campus. Immerse yourself in the campus culture.
  4. Submit daring recommenders like peers instead of old bosses. Have them explicitly highlight your confidence without attitude or questioning of the status quo.
  5. Attend their open houses both virtually and in person to demonstrate your enthusiasm. Follow their social channels and sign up for email lists to show you're a superfan.
  6. Interview current Haas students over coffee during admit weekends. Ask probing questions about their experiences and day-to-day life that reveal authentic excitement about the program.
  7. Research Haas' student clubs, journals, and research centers on LinkedIn to see current students' projects. Use that info to strengthen your essays by showing interest in specific on-campus activities.
  8. Highlight niche overlaps between your past work and Haas' niche MBA concentrations like health care or cleantech. Articulate specific reasons you need Haas specifically to pursue those interests.
  9. Create a Haas-specific resume tailored to their leadership behaviors. Demonstrate how innovation and entrepreneurship encompass your career goals.
  10. Attend a Defining Principles course open house to experience their culture firsthand pre-MBA. Use that insider knowledge to prove why you make a great fit.
  11. Take advantage of Berkeley’s resources. If you are stuck with the application process at any point, please refer to Berkeley Haas’ application Bootcamp. This is designed to guide you through the process and give you a few hints along the way! 

Andy, a US Army officer, turned successful Haas applicant, stressed his differentiating factor while applying to the Full-time MBA program. 

Working closely with us, Andy was “encouraged… to stop trying to be the standard applicant with a finance or consulting background.” He was unique, and his application needed to reflect that; his military experiences provided him with “unique leadership capabilities and strengths.” 

So, present a compelling picture of yourself by reflecting upon your experiences within your application and interview.

If you need one-on-one attention, you should consider working with an admissions consultant who can ensure your application is as competitive as possible. 

Haas MBA at UC Berkeley Essay Prompts

Haas' MBA application requires candidates to complete two written essays. Additionally, Haas requires one video essay and one short answer, with two more written essays listed as optional.

  • Required Essay #1: “What makes you feel alive when you are doing it, and why? (300 words maximum)”
  • Required Essay #2: “How will an MBA help you achieve your short-term and long-term career goals? (300 words max)”
  • Video Essay: “The Berkeley MBA program develops leaders who embody our four Defining Leadership Principles. Briefly introduce yourself to the admissions committee, explain which leadership principle resonates most with you, and tell us how you have exemplified the principle in your personal or professional life. (Not to exceed 2 minutes.)”
  • Short Answer Response: “Can you please describe any experience or exposure you have in the area of diversity, equity, inclusion, justice, and belonging whether through community organizations, personal, or in the workplace? (300 words max)”

When crafting responses, do show vulnerability, alignment with Haas' principles, and concrete examples. Don't rely on platitudes about leadership or success. Every word must support your fit argument.

Remember, Hass doesn’t want to admit applicants who are solely motivated by money. Instead, they want candidates who will use their MBA to enrich their lives and perspectives. So, make sure that the essays reflect who you are, and you’ll be sure to succeed.

Haas MBA at UC Berkeley Interview

Haas invites select applicants to interview after submitting their application. The interview is conducted by an alumni volunteer, either in-person or virtually, depending on location. It runs about 30 minutes and includes both behavioral questions about one's background and essay-style prompts evaluating fit, interests, and goals. 

If you are invited to an interview, that means you are a competitive candidate. Proper preparation is key to acing your meeting with the college. 


It’s not easy to be admitted to the Hass School of Business MBA programs. However, we’ve provided several questions and answers below to help make the application process as smooth as possible. 

1. Who Should Write My Hass MBA Letters Of Recommendation?

Haas strongly prefers that both letters come from current or former supervisors who have worked closely with you and can attest to your professional accomplishments, abilities, and potential. Specifically, they recommend asking your current direct supervisor and a former supervisor.

2. How Many Applicants Does The Full-Time MBA Program Receive Each Year? 

The Full-time MBA Program at the Haas School of Business, University of California Berkeley receives around 3,700 applications per year. With a 15% acceptance rate, that means around 555 students are accepted annually.

3. Does Haas Have A Minimum GMAT or GRE Score Requirement? 

While the average GMAT at Haas is around 733, there is no strict cutoff or minimum score enforced for the GMAT or GRE. The admissions committee looks holistically at applicants based on work experience, academic background, essays, recommendations, and other aspects of the full profile.

4. Is There A Minimum Haas School Of Business GPA Requirement?

Much like the GMAT and GRE, there are no Haas School of Business undergraduate GPA requirements. But, Haas states that the standard GPA for consideration is 3.0.

5. Can I apply to multiple Haas School of Business programs in one application cycle? 

Although applications for each program are submitted and processed separately, Haas only allows applicants to apply to one program per admissions cycle.

6. Is It Better To Choose A Specific Interview Format? 

Whatever interview format you choose, Haas will give equal consideration to every option. 

So, ensure you thoroughly prepare for your MBA interview and research commonly asked MBA interview questions. Also, make sure you have prepared several questions to ask your MBA interviewer

7. What Is The Haas Acceptance Rate? 

The Haas acceptance rate is approximately 15%. That means that out of 3,700 yearly applicants, only 555 students receive admission.

8. How Hard Is It To Get Into The Haas MBA Program? 

Getting into the Haas MBA program is quite difficult and competitive. Haas’ low acceptance rate reflects its difficult applicant pool. 

Final Thoughts

Gaining admission to UC Berkeley's Haas School of Business is difficult, given the exceptionally low 15% acceptance rate. While one's test scores, grades, and work experience certainly matter, remember that the admissions decision is ultimately holistic. 

Haas seeks candidates who demonstrate strong cultural fit and embrace the defining principles that make the school unique. Rather than chasing prestige or rankings, focus your effort on determining if Haas is the right match to help you meet your goals and maximize your potential impact.

About Inspira Futures

At Inspira Futures, our sole focus is to get you accepted at your dream business school. Our team of experts consists of former admission committee members and alums from Harvard Business School, Stanford GSB, and other M7 schools. Our goal is to help you write great essays, ace interviews, and win scholarships. Without any stress or hassle. Our clients have gone on to secure admits at the world's top business schools while also being winners of some of the most prestigious scholarships like Stanford Knight Hennessy, HBS Baker Scholars, and many others.
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