Admission Process of MBA Colleges
1. Entrance Exam
All MBA colleges in India have an entrance exam as the first stage of screening applicants. The IIM’s conduct a Common Admission Test or CAT whose scores are also accepted by other institutes like FMS, MDI, SP Jain, IMT along with many other colleges. Other popular entrance exams in India include XAT conducted by XLRI Jamshedpur. Some other entrance exams are NMAT, SNAP and MH-CET which are valid for all NMIMS colleges, all Symbiosis colleges and all government affiliated colleges in Maharashtra respectively.
The entrance exam, the first stage, tests a student’s ability to perform under pressure. The areas of testing include Quantitative Techniques or Maths, Verbal Ability or English and Analytical and Logical Reasoning (and General Knowledge in some cases). This is the most difficult step in getting into a top MBA college in India and most of the elimination takes place at this stage.
2. Application Essays
Application essays are an integral part of most top MBA college’s selection process these days. While only those shortlisted based on their written scores in CAT are expected to write these essays in the case of the IIMs, some other top management institutes in India such as S. P. Jain ask you to write essays as the first step itself. In the case of S. P. Jain, your essays play a crucial role in getting shortlisted for the next round. However most of the times, like in the case of the IIMs, they form the basis for the Personal Interview process itself.
3. Group Discussion (GD)
Not all GD’s are equal. MBA colleges use several types of GD’s to test the applicants. While there are some GD’s that test the knowledge of a candidate on a particular topic, others are designed to test the “lateral thinking” of the candidate. A type of GD that comes in the form of a short “case-study” is where applicants are asked to analyze a situation and frame responses. Another possible type of a GD is a “group exercise”.
So then how should you prepare for a GD? You should work on developing your knowledge base, while at the same time, focus on improving your communication skills. Some specific lessons on managing yourself during the GD are important too.
4. Personal Interview (PI)
This will be the final and the most important hurdle in your quest for admission to a top MBA college. And often, it is the toughest. PI experiences vary vastly from one person to another, and it often very difficult to predict the outcome of a PI. Just because you walked out of your PI feeling totally down in the gutters does not mean that you will not get through it, nor does it work the other way around. But there is one thing that anyone can definitely say about this process – that it is a game of confidence. Those 10 self-assured minutes you spend with the panelists is all it takes to get through. As simple as that.
Admission is usually offered based on the cumulative scores of all the above processes and academics and past work experience (in some cases).
Admission notifications from top MBA colleges start from November and continue till the end of May. Many of these colleges also have a wait list of candidates which gets regularly updated based on the number of students in the first list who took admission in the same college