Essay Topic Analysis
Free, expert analysis of business school application essay topics.
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Analysis of Indian School of Business Essay 1: Please detail your two most significant achievements.
Please detail your two most significant achievements. These could be either professional or personal but relevant to your application to the ISB. (300 words max) New to the ISB application, this is a fairly straightforward question, but brevity will be key given the 300-word limit. Applicants should select two achievements... Read more »
Based on this year’s essay questions, it looks like Columbia remains interested in learning about applicants’ career goals and personal experiences, although the first two essay topics have slight variations from last year’s. New to the application, the third question offers students the opportunity to demonstrate their knowledge of Columbia’s... Read more »
Analysis of Columbia Business School Essay 3, Option C: Select one of the current executives in residence with whom you would like to meet during your time at Columbia. Explain your selection and tell us how you would best utilize your half hour one-on-one session.
Founded nearly three decades ago, the Executives in Residence Program at Columbia Business School integrates senior executives into the life of the School. Current executives in residence include more than a dozen experts in areas ranging from media and investment banking to private equity and management. A hallmark of the... Read more »
Analysis of Columbia Business School Essay 3, Option B: You are running for either Cluster Chair or a club leadership position of your choosing. Compose your campaign speech.
Columbia deeply values its vibrant student community, the building of which begins at orientation when admitted students are assigned to clusters of 65 to 70 fellow students who take most of the first-year core classes together. During the first weeks of school, each cluster selects a Cluster Chair. Further strengthening... Read more »
Analysis of Columbia Business School Essay 3, Option A: Develop your own “outrageous” business idea. In essay form, compose your “elevator pitch.”
The annual A. Lorne Weil Outrageous Business Plan Competition is a student initiative managed and run by the Columbia Entrepreneurs Organization (CEO). The competition encourages Columbia MBA students to explore creative entrepreneurial ideas that are sufficiently ambitious in scope and scale to be considered “outrageous.” Students explore these ideas while... Read more »
Describe a life experience that has shaped you. The goal of this essay is to get a sense of who you are, rather than what you have achieved professionally. (Maximum 500 words) Because Columbia explicitly states that they do not want to hear about professional achievements in this essay, applicants... Read more »
Analysis of Columbia Business School Essay 1: Considering your post-MBA and long term professional goals, why you are pursuing an MBA at this point in your career? Additionally, why is Columbia Business School a good fit for you?
Considering your post-MBA and long term professional goals, why you are pursuing an MBA at this point in your career? Additionally, why is Columbia Business School a good fit for you? (Maximum 750 words) This prompt falls in line with the standard Career Goals Essay, and thus the general advice... Read more »
With essay topics for the coming year already starting to be released by some schools, there are applicants who are eager to get started on their written applications. Though essay questions tend to vary year to year, the two things that nearly every prospective student can count on being asked... Read more »
Why do you want an MBA? (400 words) A variation of the standard career goals essayrequired by many business schools, this essay is actually a new addition for HBS this year. While an inquiry about applicants’ “career visions” had been among the school’s essay options over the past few seasons,... Read more »
For the 2011-2012 admissions season, HBS applicants will need to respond to a total of four essay questions. Unlike the past few years in which applicants had some choice about what essay questions to respond to, this year applicants must respond to all of the questions provided. Similarly to prior... Read more »
Answer a question you wish we’d asked. (400 words) Making a return to the HBS application after a years-long absence, this question provides candidates a chance to explore an important aspect of their candidacy not mentioned in their data forms, resume, or other essay responses. For applicants from oversubscribed groups... Read more »
Tell us three setbacks you have faced. (600 words) Last season, HBS posed questions asking candidates to discuss a single mistake they had made and a single frustration they encountered, so this focus on things going less-than-well for the applicant isn’t too far afield from the adcom’s established interests. The... Read more »
Tell us about three of your accomplishments. (600 words) This is a variation on an essay question that has been a hallmark of the HBS application for many years, downshifting its previous request for an applicant’s “three most substantial accomplishments” to a more laid-back formulation this season. Due to its... Read more »