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Frequently Asked Questions

Contact Information:

Executive MBA Program
Office of Admissions
Stephen M. Ross School of Business
University of Michigan
701 Tappan Street, W3700
Ann Arbor, MI 48109
(734) 647-3400
(734) 763-7804 FAX
rossemba@umich.edu

General Information

How does the Executive MBA program differ from Michigan's Full-time MBA Program?
Is there a difference between the Ann Arbor and Los Angeles cohorts?
What areas does your curriculum emphasize?
How long does the program take to complete?
What is the format of the program?
What happens when we are not in residency?
How much time should I expect to set aside for homework during the week?
How many students per class?
Will I be expected to work alone, or will I be assigned to work with a group of my peers?
Where do classes meet?
Where do I stay while in residence?
Can I choose a major for my Executive MBA?
Will my degree be the same as if I attended the Full-time MBA Program?
Who are the faculty teaching in the EMBA?
Is the Michigan EMBA Program accredited?

Admissions Information

Do you hold information sessions?
Can I sit in on a class?
Do I have to take the GMAT?
Is an interview required?
What can I expect in the interview?
When will I be notified of a decision regarding my admission?
Can I apply to the Executive MBA and another Michigan program during the same year?
Do international candidates have to take the TOEFL?
If I am asked to take the TOEFL, what is an acceptable score?
Can I defer my admission?

Finances

How much does the program cost?
What is included in the cost of the program?
Is corporate sponsorship required?
Is financial aid available?
Can I use my VA benefits to pay for the program?


General Information

Q: How does the Executive MBA program differ from Michigan's Full-time MBA Program?

A: The Executive MBA program is customized to meet the needs of individuals in senior management roles, focusing on leadership skills needed to be successful at the executive level. Specifically, the program targets participants who have 10-15 years of work experience, with significant experience in a managerial/supervisory capacity. The collective professional experience of EMBA participants enriches the learning experience both in and outside the classroom.

The participants’ average age for the last several entering classes has been 38, with about 10 years in a managerial/supervisory capacity. Participants come from a broad variety of organizations, including Fortune 500 firms, as well as regional and entrepreneurial businesses. While the core curriculum is similar to that in the Full-time MBA Program, the overall EMBA curriculum is more strategic in focus and designed to help participants make an immediate impact at work, while taking advantage of the participant's professional experiences. Both programs include Michigan's signature field study, the Multidisciplinary Action Projects (MAP) course, which partners students with organizations across the world.

The day MBA program is a two-year, full-time program targeting individuals who have had approximately four to five years of work experience, typically at the analyst level; the average age of students is 28. Candidates are looking at their MBA experience as a way to "jump-start" their career as well as to explore different career options. Whereas the EMBA program is a "lock-step" program where all participants take the same classes at the same time, the full-time program allows for a focus area (i.e. consulting, finance, marketing).

Q: Is there a difference between the Ann Arbor and Los Angeles cohorts?

A: Whether in Los Angeles or Ann Arbor, students experience the same Michigan Ross EMBA. Both locations offer the same strong, general management curriculum, renowned Michigan Ross faculty, and high-quality learning and networking experiences during on-campus residencies. Both Ann Arbor and Los Angeles follow the same schedule format. Students in both locations benefit from selected shared residencies and integrated networking opportunities.

Q: What areas does your curriculum emphasize?

A: The curriculum at Michigan's Ross emphasizes general management, strategy, and leadership development. It is highly applied and geared toward providing the skills and toolsets needed by individuals to lead organizations. Participants seeking advancement to the highest levels in their organizations need to have a broad-based education as opposed to functional expertise. As such, the EMBA curriculum provides a rigorous general management education that focuses on a strategic approach to business issues and problem solving as a successful leader. Being able to identify the "big picture" and implement winning strategy is critical to our approach.

Parallel to the traditional courses is a leadership development track in which participants outline goals as well as identify strengths and areas for growth during the first year. In the second year, a number of different workshops will be organized around these identified goals. Recent topics include dealing with media in crisis situations, delivering powerful presentations, and managing senior staff groups.

ExecMAP and the electives unit near the end of the 21-month program provide opportunities to customize your learning based on your unique goals and interests.

Q: How long does the program take to complete?

A: The Executive MBA Program at the Stephen M. Ross School of Business is a 21-month program. Courses begin in August and conclude 21 months later in April/May.

Q: What is the format of the program?

A: Participants in the EMBA Program attend an extended residency at the beginning of each academic year, and return to campus approximately once per month for an all-day Friday/Saturday residency. There is a major field project course (ExecMAP) held near the end of the program. During the weeks when participants are not in residence, the program takes advantage of a number of different distance learning technologies to augment the traditional face-to-face classroom teaching as well as provide opportunities for virtual team meetings. To view a sample 21-month calendar, click here.

Q: What happens when we are not in residency?

A: Participants are provided with the necessary materials and technologies to facilitate their distance learning efforts. With three courses typically taught concurrently, each month is organized to allow for one full week of online learning per class. Lectures are provided via podcasts, which may offer a number of different learning opportunities ranging from streaming video to interactive cases. The EMBA Program also supports a software platform allowing a broad range of features to supplement virtual teams, including document exchange as well as voice conferencing.

Q: How much time should I expect to set aside for homework during the week?

A: On average, students should anticipate spending between 15 to 20 hours per week on homework, including meeting times and time spent reviewing online materials. This time may vary depending on course material and individual habits.

Q: How many students per class?

A: We target a class of 45 to 70 students to begin each Fall.

Q: Will I be expected to work alone, or will I be assigned to work with a group of my peers?

A: Students will be assigned to a group that will include five or six of their peers. Although not all class work will be assigned as a group task, we recognize that many decisions made in the work environment are done so with a group of colleagues. Teams are formed with the intention of bringing together a diverse group of individuals across function and industry. Groups will change at least three times in the program to maximize your interaction with other classmates and to form the basis of a lifetime network.

Q: Where do classes meet?

A: Students in Ann Arbor will attend classes at Michigan Ross, in facilities designed specifically for the needs of executive education.

Students in Los Angeles will attend classes at the Hyatt Regency Century Plaza adjacent to Beverly Hills, where trained staff will provide an educational environment similar to the Ann Arbor experience.

Q: Where do I stay while in residence?

A: Students in Ann Arbor will stay at Michigan Ross' Executive Residence, a first-class hotel that offers easy, refined living. Hotel rooms are located on the top three floors of the Executive Residence and Wyly Hall, with classrooms on the lower levels.

Students in Los Angeles will stay at the Hyatt Regency Century Plaza adjacent to Beverly Hills, where first-class amenities, fine dining, and top-rated service ensure students can focus on learning during residencies, not on logistics.

Q: Can I choose a major for my Executive MBA?

A: As this is a "lock step" program, participants take the same classes at the same time with the same cohort. However, there are a number of opportunities to customize the experience based on individual interests. This may range from course assignments in which participants and/or teams can study specific industries and/or organizations, to the ExecMAP field projects in which participants are able to select from a variety of projects in different industries and functional areas. At the midpoint of the second year, students also take two of three electives spanning marketing, finance, and entrepreneurship. For more information, click here.

Q: Will my degree be the same as if I attended the Full-time MBA Program?

A: Yes, there is only one Master of Business Administration degree granted by the Stephen M. Ross School of Business at the University of Michigan.

Q: Who are the faculty teaching in the EMBA Program?

A: Faculty are drawn from the same pool of professors teaching in the full-time program. Faculty in the EMBA are more often senior faculty members with significant research, teaching and consulting experience.

Q: Is the Michigan EMBA Program accredited?

A: Yes, the Stephen M. Ross School of Business at the University of Michigan is fully accredited by AACSB International, the Association to Advance Collegiate Schools of Business.

Admissions Information

Q: Do you hold information Sessions?

A: Yes. Multiple recruiting events are scheduled each year. For the current schedule, click here. Candidates unable to attend an informational event are welcome to schedule a one-to-one appointment with an admissions counselor. Appointments are conducted in person, by phone or Skype, or online.

Q: Can I sit in on a class?

A: Yes. Applicants are welcome to sit in on a class. Class visits are typically scheduled during on-campus Preview Day events.

Q: Do I have to take the GMAT?

A: No. The GMAT is not a requirement of admission to the Michigan Ross EMBA Program.

Q: Is an interview required?

A: Yes. Candidates are encouraged to schedule their interviews during on-campus Preview Day events. Preview Days are typically held on Fridays and Saturdays during class residencies at both Ann Arbor and Los Angeles campuses. While on campus during these events, candidates also have the opportunity to observe a class, have lunch with students, and meet with admissions staff and faculty. If a candidate is unable to attend a scheduled Preview Day event, interviews can be conducted Monday-Friday during regular business hours.

Admissions interviews may be conducted prior to or after a completed application has been submitted. Candidates may request an interview by sending a copy of their resume to the EMBA Admissions Office at rossemba@umich.edu or by requesting an interview during registration for a Preview Day event.

Q. What can I expect in the interview?

A: Interviews are approximately one hour in length and are conducted by one or two members of the admissions committee. Dress is business formal. During the interview, candidates should be prepared to discuss their professional history, current level of responsibility, and personal and professional reasons for pursuing an Executive MBA at Ross.

Q: When will I be notified of a decision regarding my admission?

A: Application decisions are made within four to six weeks from the date of completion and are communicated via email and/or U.S. Mail.

Q: Can I apply to the Executive MBA and another Michigan program during the same year?

A: Individuals may only apply to one program at Michigan Ross during any given admission cycle.

Q: Do international candidates have to take the TOEFL?

A: Candidates are required to have a high level of proficiency in the English language. Language skills are assessed throughout the application process and are considered in an applicant’s overall evaluation. Based on the evaluation, certain candidates may be asked to take the TOEFL exam.

Q: If I am asked to take the TOEFL, what is an acceptable score?

A: A score of 100 or higher on the Internet-based test (IBT) is strongly recommended. Ross also accepts the IELTS as an alternative to the TOEFL. An IELTS score of 7 or higher is strongly recommended. TOEFL and IELTS scores are considered valid if taken within two years of the application deadline date.

Q: Can I defer my admission?

A: One-year deferrals of admission are granted at the sole discretion of the admissions committee. Candidates must submit a formal request of deferral to the committee.  If granted, candidates are required to submit a non-refundable deferral deposit to guarantee their seat in the following class.

Finances

Q: How much does the program cost?

A: Tuition and fees are set at the beginning of each program year. Once your tuition is set, it won't change during your 21 months in the program. Tuition and fees for the 21-month EMBA Program that will begin in Fall 2014 are $141,000 for Michigan residents and $146,000 for nonresidents. See the Registrar's Office for University of Michigan residency requirements. Tuition and fees for the Ann Arbor and Los Angeles cohorts will be the same. For more information, click here.

Q: What is included in the cost of the program?

A: At Michigan Ross, we believe in providing a comprehensive, all-inclusive, immersive experience for EMBA students. We believe this is the best way to foster a high-quality environment for learning, collaboration, and relationship-building among executives in the program. In our program, you won't find hidden costs or unexpected changes to tuition.

Tuition and fees in the Michigan Ross EMBA Program cover:

  • All tuition for courses, workshops, special speakers, and events
  • All books, electronic resources, and course materials
  • Technology, software, and communications needs
  • Lodging in Michigan Ross' Executive Residence (Ann Arbor) or the Hyatt Regency (Los Angeles)
  • All dining, including all breakfasts, lunches, dinners, snacks/coffee breaks, and occasional group dining excursions

Because the program is designed for intense group interaction, it is expected that participants stay in the Ann Arbor or Los Angeles executive residence location during scheduled sessions.   

Lodging and meals are covered for the duration of extended on-campus residencies.

Tuition and fees do not cover your travel expenses. EMBA students are required to pay for all transportation to and from Ann Arbor and/or Los Angeles.

Travel required for ExecMAP is covered by sponsoring organizations and/or the EMBA program.

Q: Is corporate sponsorship required?

A: No, corporate financial sponsorship is not required, although a "statement of corporate support" indicating support of your participation in the EMBA Program and recognition of the time commitment is required. Sponsorship may come from your direct supervisor, human resources director, or higher management representative. Candidates who are self-employed may waive this requirement.

Q: Is financial aid available?

A: Yes, financial aid is available. To learn about loan options, please click here.

Q: Can I use my VA benefits to pay for the program?

A: Ross is proud to participate in the Chapter 33Post 9/11 GI Bill and Yellow Ribbon Program. For detailed information, click here, and contact Ross Financial Aid with any questions.