Best B-Schools

How We Rank the Schools


Bloomberg Businessweek’s rankings of part-time MBA, executive MBA, and nondegree executive education programs each have their own methodology:

Part-Time MBA: This ranking is based on eight separate measures of student satisfaction, academic quality, and post-graduation outcomes. To measure student satisfaction, we survey part-time MBA students at participating schools—those who have recently graduated or are nearing graduation— about all aspects of their academic experience. Academic quality is determined using six equally weighted measures: average GMAT score, average student work experience, the percentage of teachers who are tenured, average class size in core business classes, the number of business electives available to part-timers, and the percentage of students who ultimately complete the program. To gauge post-graduation outcomes, we determine the percentage of student survey respondents from each school who say their part-time MBA program was “completely” responsible for their having achieved career goals. The student survey contributes 40 percent of the final ranking, with academic quality and post-MBA outcomes contributing 30 percent each.

Executive MBA: This ranking is based on surveys of EMBA graduates and EMBA directors. Using e-mail addresses supplied by the programs participating in the ranking, we contact graduates and ask them to complete a survey on teaching quality, career services, curriculum, and other aspects of their experience. The results of the 2013 survey are then combined with those from two previous surveys (2011 and 2009) for a student survey score that contributes 65 percent of the final ranking. The second survey asks directors of EMBA programs participating in the ranking to identify the programs they consider the best, and rank them from 1 to 10. We assign 10 points for every No. 1 ranking, nine points for every No. 2 ranking, and so on. The point totals for each program contribute the remaining 35 percent of the final ranking.

Executive Education: This ranking is based on a survey of client companies that send employees to the schools participating in the ranking. The survey asks the companies to identify the schools whose executive education programs they’re familiar with, and which of those they consider the best. The companies rank up to 10 schools in each of two categories—open-enrollment and custom programs. A No. 1 ranking is worth 10 points, a No. 2 ranking nine points, and so on. Each school’s point total is then multiplied by the number of companies ranking it, and the product is then divided by the number of companies that indicated a familiarity with it. The goal: to identify the programs that are considered best-in-class by the vast majority of companies that are familiar with them.

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Louis_lavelle
Lavelle is an associate editor for Bloomberg Businessweek.

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