News, advice and resources for business school applicants

Essay Topics

A listing of business school application essay topics posted as they are announced by leading MBA programs. Check back frequently during the summer months for updates!


Oxford / Saïd Essay Topics 2015-2016

oxford mba essaysThe Saïd School of Business has announced the 2015-2016 Oxford MBA essays for the coming application season. This year’s Oxford MBA application consists of two “mandatory” essays, as well as additional prompts for 1+1 applicants and reapplicants to Saïd.

The Oxford/Saïd MBA essays are as follows:

Essay 1: How do you fit with Oxford Saïd’s mission? (Maximum 500 words)

Essay 2: Is there anything not covered in the application form which you would like the Admissions committee to know about you? (Maximum 250 words) Continue reading…

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Fuqua Admissions Dean Dishes on Essays and Life

fuqua admissionsIt’s not every admissions director who will make time during her vacation to discuss how prospective business school applicants should approach their essays. And yet Liz Riley Hargrove, associate dean for admissions at Duke University’s Fuqua School of Business, did just that. Speaking from North Carolina’s Outer Banks this morning, before the kids woke up ready to head to the beach, she shared insights with Clear Admit on the essay prompts released last week.

Not a lot has changed this year in terms of Fuqua’s application, it turns out. Applicants will find they have twice as much space in which to answer three short-answer prompts—one on short-term goals, one on long-term goals and one on an alternative plan should that first short-term goal not pan out. This year candidates get 500 characters for each response, up from 250 last year. “We wanted to give candidates a little more opportunity to expand upon their responses,” she says of this year’s doubled answer field. Continue reading…

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HEC Paris 2015-2016 Essay Topics

european mbaThe HEC Paris admissions committee has released the 2015-2016 MBA essay topics via the program’s online application. The HEC MBA essays consist of five required responses and an additional optional essay.

The HEC MBA essays for 2015-2016 are:

Essay 1: Why are you applying to the HEC MBA Program now? What is the professional objective that will guide your career choice after your MBA, and how will the HEC MBA contribute to the achievement of this objective? (500 words)

Essay 2: What do you consider your most significant life achievement? (250 words)

Essay 3: Leadership and ethics are inevitably intertwined in the business world. Describe a situation in which you have dealt with these issues and how they have influenced you. (250 words) Continue reading…

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Duke / Fuqua 2015-2016 Essay Topics

Duke FuquaThe Duke MBA admissions committee has announced the Fuqua 2015-2016 essay topics for business school applicants targeting the class of 2018. Fuqua MBA applicants will complete three short answers and two required essays for this season’s admissions process.

The Fuqua 2015-2016 Daytime MBA essay topics are as follows:

Required Short Answers (500 characters; ~100 words)
Short Answer 1: What are your short-term goals, post-MBA?

Short Answer 2: What are your long-term goals?

Short Answer 3: Life is full of uncertainties, and plans and circumstances can change. As a result, navigating a career requires you to be adaptable. Should the short-term goals that you provided above not materialize what alternative directions have you considered? Continue reading…

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Georgetown McDonough’s Shari Hubert Points to Subtle Changes in New Application

McDonoughRefreshed following a two-day staff retreat, the head of admissions at Georgetown University’s McDonough School of Business took time this morning to share with Clear Admit her advice to prospective candidates on how to approach the school’s application for the Class of 2018.

Though its essay question remains unchanged from last year, there are subtle shifts elsewhere in the application, says Shari Hubert, who has served as Georgetown McDonough’s associate dean of MBA admissions since 2013. Among other things, applicants will have greater opportunity to highlight experiences living and working abroad. Read on to learn more about these subtle shifts, as well as Hubert’s advice on how to make taking a risk in response to the essay pay off. Continue reading…

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Georgetown / McDonough 2015-2016 Essay Topics

georgetownWhile the Georgetown adcom is still updating its admissions webpage, Clear Admit has received confirmation from the McDonough Admissions Director that the program’s MBA application essays will be unchanged from those that appeared on last year’s application. This means that applicants to Georgetown are required to respond to a single 750-word essay prompt, with two optional responses and an additional required essay for reapplicants.

The McDonough MBA Essays for 2015-2016 are as follows:

Essay 1: Essay 1: Why You? (Hint: we are looking for an answer that cannot be found from research on our website; 750 words) Continue reading…

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UVA / Darden 2015-2016 Essay Topic

uvadardenWhile we’re still waiting on the UVA MBA deadlines for the coming admissions season, the Darden adcom has released its essay topic for 2015-2016. As was the case last season, applicants are required to respond to a single prompt focused on a prior experience, with a length limit of 500 words.

The Darden 2015-2016 essay topic is as follows:

Essay 1: Describe the most important professional feedback you have received and how you responded to it. (500 words maximum)

For more information about applying, see the Darden MBA admissions website. And now that the essay topic is out, get a jump on your research with the FREE 2015-2016 UVA / Darden School Snapshot.

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Emory / Goizueta 2015-2016 Deadlines and Essay Topics

Goizueta_Business_School_-_rearThe Emory MBA admissions committee has posted the Goizueta 2015-2016 deadlines and essay topics for the school’s full-time MBA Program.

The deadlines are as follows:

Round 1
Application Deadline: October 19, 2015
Notification Date: December 3, 2015
Deposit Due: December 18, 2015

Round 2
Application Deadline: November 13, 2015
Notification Date: January 28, 2016
Deposit Due: Feburary 22, 2016 (International & One-Year) / April 11, 2016 (Domestic) Continue reading…

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INSEAD September 2016 Intake Essay Topics

Inseadlogon21A few weeks after the release of the coming season’s INSEAD MBA application deadlines, INSEAD’s online application for its September 2016 intake is now live, which means that this year’s essay questions are now available.

The INSEAD September 2016 Intake Essay Topics are as follows:

Job Description Essays
Job Essay 1: Briefly summarise your current (or most recent) job, including the nature of work, major responsibilities, and where relevant, employees under your supervision, size of budget, clients/products and results achieved. (short answer) Continue reading…

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NYU Stern Head of Admissions Offers Advice on Essays Posted Today

isser_galloglyJust after New York University (NYU) Stern School of Business posted its essay questions for the 2015-16 admissions cycle this morning, Assistant Dean of MBA Admissions Isser Gallogly got on the phone with Clear Admit to share some advice on what the school is looking for in prospective applicants’ responses.

Stern didn’t change much this year in terms of its essay prompts. The first, identical to last year, invites applicants to outline their professional aspirations, including why they are pursuing an MBA now, what they have done to determine that Stern is the best fit for them and what they see themselves doing professionally when they graduate. Continue reading…

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NYU / Stern 2015-2016 Deadlines and Essay Topics

The NYU Stern 2015-2016 deadlines and essay topics have been released for applicants targeting the NYU MBA Class of 2018. Stern conducts its application process in four rounds. The school notes that candidates can expect one of three outcomes on the initial notification date: an invitation to interview, a waitlist offer, or denial of admission. All application materials are due by 11:59pm Eastern Time on the date of the deadline.

Round One
Deadline: October 15, 2015
Initial Notification: December 15, 2015 Continue reading…

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