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MBA Admissions FAQs

Applying

Q: In which round should I apply?  How important is it to apply in Round 1?

A. Those interested in applying are encouraged to do so in Round 1 for two reasons. First, applicants who are placed on the waiting list in Round 1 will have two additional opportunities for review in the second and third rounds. Also, applicants admitted in Round 1 will be considered for scholarships in Round 1 and Round 2.  Applicants in Round 3 are less likely to be offered scholarships.

Q: Can I transfer into the MBA Program?

A. No, previous coursework will not transfer into our MBA Program. In addition, students admitted to Ross may not be simultaneously enrolled in two graduate programs unless enrolled in an approved dual-degree program.

Q: I already have an MBA. Can I still apply to the Ross MBA Program?

A. We do accept applications from individuals who have an MBA. However, you must explain through your application why you feel you need another MBA degree.

Q: Can I apply to both the Full-time MBA and Part-time MBA programs for the same term?

A.  No, students must chose between programs and may only apply to one program in any given cycle.

Q: Is a three-year undergraduate degree from India acceptable to apply?

A.  Yes, we will consider applicants who hold a three-year undergraduate degree from India.

Q: Do I need a business degree or business classes in undergrad to be admitted?

A: We welcome applications from a wide variety of backgrounds and do not look for or favor specific undergraduate majors. "Business” classes are not required before entering the MBA Program.

Q: Am I required to complete a college-level calculus course?

A:  No, however, due to the analytical rigor of the program, it is expected that students have a working knowledge of college-level mathematics, including basic calculus. If you have not had this coursework, we recommend that you take a course that emphasizes business mathematics prior to beginning the program. If you have basic math knowledge but need a refresher, you may want to take our Quantitative Skills Workshop prior to the start of classes.

Q: I am a college senior. Can I apply to the MBA Program? Does Ross admit students straight out of undergrad?

A. We require the completion of the equivalent of a U.S. bachelor's degree prior to applying.  Recent graduates are eligible to apply, but it is difficult to be admitted.  At Ross, we look closely at what an applicant can add to the Ross community and share with their classmates.  Students straight out of undergrad tend to have limited experience and therefore less to contribute.  Likewise, these students tend not to be as prepared to get the most out of all that Ross has to offer.

Q: How much work experience do I need before I can apply?

A. We do not require a minimum number of years work experience prior to entering the MBA Program, but the significant majority of our admitted students have at least one to two years of work experience prior to entering. For recent incoming classes, the average amount of post-undergraduate work experience has been five years. 

That said, we evaluate work experience not in terms of quantity, but in terms of quality: the impact the applicant has had on their organization and his or her natural leadership qualities. Those who wish to join us at an earlier stage of their career should be able to demonstrate what they will be able to contribute to the Ross experience, as well as have superb academic credentials and the maturity and self-confidence to handle the intensity of the program.

Q: What type of work experience are you looking for in the admissions process?

A: We seek diversity in the professional backgrounds of our admitted students, just as we do in other parts of our applicants’ profiles. No one industry or field is favored over another. We are more interested in the applicant’s contribution to the group or organization.  

Q: Should I apply using The Consortium application?

A: The Consortium application option is intended for US Citizens and Permanent Residents who have demonstrated support of The Consortium's mission of promoting underrepresented minorities in business education and in the ranks of management.

Q: Do you offer a hardcopy application?

A. No, we no longer accept hardcopy applications. You can only apply using our online application.

Q: Can I have my application fee waived?

A: The application fee is only waived if an applicant is a former member of the Peace Corps, AmeriCorps or Teach for America within three years of applying, or a former member of the U.S. Military who has been on active duty within three years of applying. We do not waive application fees for any other reason. Please email rossmba@umich.edu to request an application fee waiver prior to submitting your application.

Q: Who may write my letters of recommendation?

A. Recommendations should be from persons who have been directly responsible for assessing your professional performance. At least one, and preferably both, of the recommendations should come from an employer or supervisor.

  • If you do not provide a recommendation from an employer or supervisor, you should explain why not via the optional essay.
  • Recommendations from former professors are not as helpful to the Admissions Committee since they cannot evaluate your performance in a professional setting. Of course, there are exceptions, but a recommendation from a current or former employer usually provides more helpful information.
  • There are situations in which applicants do not wish to inform current supervisors that they are applying to business school. In this case, a former manager, client, or supervisor from an extracurricular organization may provide a recommendation.
  • It is important that recommendations provide details and/or examples to support opinions about an applicant. For example, noting that "Julie is a great team player" does not provide as much insight as providing concrete examples of how well Julie performed on a team when faced with certain responsibilities and challenges. Recommendations that state strong feelings, either positive or negative, without examples are not helpful.

Q: What should I do if my recommender has not received my online invitation to recommend me?

A: This tends to be a problem with a recommender's email account spam or junk email filter settings.  The emailed invitation is either blocked or automatically filtered into a junk mail folder.  An applicant can check the status of their recommendations, resend a recommendation request and even update a recommender if the recommendation is not yet started via an applicant's Personal Activity page.  This can be accessed under the Apply Online section of your online application homepage and by clicking on the Review Your Submitted Application/ManageYour Recommendations link.

Q: Do most applicants write the optional essay?

A. It varies. The essay is primarily offered to give applicants a place to tell the Admissions Committee pertinent information that has not been addressed in the other areas of the application. For example, if there are gaps in your resume, the optional essay could be used to explain them.

Q: How do I submit supplemental information (e.g., transcripts or a letter of recommendation) if I am unable to upload it with my online application?

A:   We do not accept updated documentation after application submission.  This includes new resumes, essays or additional recommendations.  The only exception is updated test scores. 

If there was a problem submitting transcripts or a recommendation via the online application, you can scan these items and attach in an email to rossmba@umich.edu.  Please include your name and date of birth in the email, and let us know this is supplemental to your application.

Q: Do I need to schedule an interview?

A. Interviews will be conducted by invitation only. If the Admissions Committee invites you to interview, you will receive the invitation and scheduling information via email.

The interview provides the Admissions Committee with more information about you. It is not an indication of the outcome of your application. Interviews are typically conducted by members of the Alumni Admissions Committee or by members of our Admissions Student Committee. Interviews may be conducted on or off campus, by Skype, or, in rare circumstances, by telephone.

Q: What happens to applications that arrive after the deadline?

A. Applications must arrive in our office by the deadline to be considered during a particular period. Applications that arrive after a deadline are processed in the order they were received and may be moved to the next decision round. Application deadlines are available here.

Q: My friend received a call informing her that she had been accepted. I haven’t received a call. Does that mean I wasn’t accepted?

A. No, this does not automatically mean that you have not been accepted. When possible, the Admissions Committee will try to call or email admitted applicants to inform them of the decision, but we cannot guarantee that all applicants will be contacted. Your decision will be mailed to you according to the timeline for the round in which you applied.

Q: What should I do if I need an early decision on my application?

A.  Unfortunately, requests for admissions decisions before our decision notification dates will not be granted. Notification dates can be found at our Apply Now page.

Q: I was not accepted to the MBA Program. Can I appeal?

A. Except in some rare cases, decisions are final. However, you may appeal the decision by putting the request in writing to the director of admissions. The appeal must include additional information that you  feel would have an impact on your application (e.g., a promotion, job change, etc.). No applications will be reviewed if new information is not included with the appeal. Letters can be sent to: Office of Admissions, 701 Tappan St., E2540, Ann Arbor, MI 48109-1234 or to rossmba@umich.edu.


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Deferrals, Gap in Enrollment

Q: Does Ross grant deferrals?

A. Deferral requests are considered on a case-by-case basis and are rarely granted. Requests to defer admission to the MBA Program should be submitted in writing to the director of admissions. A detailed explanation of the request and appropriate documentation are required.

Q: What if I have to step out of the program for a year?

A: The University requires that students stay actively registered. Should a student not register for a course within any 12-month time frame, the student would have to go through a re-application process, including paying the application fee. In rare instances where a student has stepped out because of engagement with a program that is in direct support of the school's mission, this fee may be waived. For Evening students, whose work assignments may necessitate breaks in enrollment, it is critical to pay attention to this University requirement.


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General Questions

Q: How can I contact the Office of Admissions?

A: Telephone: 734-763-5796
     Fax: 734-763-7804
     Email: rossmba@umich.edu
     Mailing address: 701 Tappan St., E2540, Ann Arbor, MI 48109-1234

Q: Can I make an appointment to talk with someone in the Office of Admissions?

A: Prospective students can schedule 15-minute counseling appointments with the staff where we can answer questions about the program. Contact the admissions office front desk at 734-763-5796 or rossmba@umich.edu to schedule an appointment. We do not make appointments with students on the waitlist.

Q: Can I schedule an appointment with a professor?

A: The Office of Admissions does not schedule appointments with professors or instructors. Please contact the secretary for that professor's department.

Q: How many credits can a student take outside of the MBA Program?

A: Up to 10 of the required 57 credits in the Full-time MBA Program may be taken through other graduate programs at the Ann Arbor campus.

Q: Do you offer an Executive MBA Program?

A: Ross offers an Executive MBA Program for candidates with progressive management and supervisory experience. Candidates typically have ten or more years of experience. Refer to the Executive MBA Program website for further details.

Q: How do I check my Michigan residency status?

A: Contact the Residency office at 734-764-1400. Residency information also is available online at www.umich.edu/~regoff/resreg.html.


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GPA and Test Requirements

Q: Do you require the GMAT?  Can I take the GRE instead?

A. The GMAT or GRE is a required component of our application.  Your performance on either exam will be used as part of our assessment of your academic ability, and you are at no advantage or disadvantage by taking one exam instead of the other.

Q: What is the minimum GMAT/GRE required for admission to the MBA program?

A. We do not have a minimum score requirement for either exam.  For recent incoming classes, the middle 80% scored between 650 and 750 on the GMAT, and the average score was 703.  Ross' acceptance of the GRE is relatively new, so no GRE average or range is available at this time.

Please keep in mind that your standardized test scores are only one of a number of criteria we review in determining admission. We encourage you to apply to our program regardless of the level of your score performance. However, if you are concerned about your test performance, you may want to consider retaking your selected exam to improve your score after additional practice and preparation.

Q: How long are GMAT/GRE scores valid?

A. Ross will keep GMAT/GRE scores on file for two years. Test scores are valid for five years from the date you took the test to the deadline date when you apply; scores more than five years old are not acceptable. We encourage you to take the GMAT/GRE no later than one month prior to the application deadline, and preferably earlier. If you take the test close to an application deadline, you should include an unofficial score report with your application.

Q. How long will it take for my scores to be sent to Ross after I take the test?

A. We recommend that you allow for at least four weeks for Ross to receive your GMAT or GRE scores. Ross’ GRE reporting code is 1839.  If you are uncertain as to whether we will receive your official scores by the deadline, you can upload your unofficial score via your online application, fax your unofficial score report to our office at 734-763-7804, or send it to 701 Tappan St., Room E2540, Ann Arbor, MI 48109-1234.

Q. What is the GPA requirement for applying to the MBA Program?

A. We do not have a minimum GPA requirement. Most admitted students have GPAs of 3.0 and above and the average GPA for recent incoming classes has been 3.4.

Q. What English proficiency exams does Ross accept?

A. If your native language is not English, you must demonstrate competence in English by taking a TOEFL exam or the IELTS exam.  For the TOEFL exam, we require the Internet-based test (IBT) version of the exam.

Q. What is the minimum TOEFL or IELTS score required for international students who apply to the MBA Program?

A. We strongly recommend a TOEFL score of 100 or higher on the Internet-based test (IBT).  Ross’ TOEFL score reporting code is 1839.  Ross will accept an IELTS score as an alternative to the TOEFL, and we strongly recommend a score of 7 or higher.

Q. Are there instances in which I wouldn’t be required to take the TOEFL or IELTS?

A. International applicants who have completed an undergraduate degree from an accredited institution where the sole language of instruction was English are exempt from the TOEFL requirement.

Q. How long are TOEFL/IELTS scores valid?

A. You may submit scores from tests taken no more than two years prior to the application deadline.


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Re-applying

Q: Can I reapply to the MBA Program if I wasn’t previously accepted?

A. Yes. You can apply to the next available admitting term. Reapplication procedures are streamlined if you reapply within one year. If you reapply after that time, you must submit a completely new application and supporting documents. Please visit our reapplication page for procedures and tips on reapplying.


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