On the way to MBA: is this fortress so unwinnable?

MBA program managed to become the benchmark for training of top managers and middle-ranking managers in the shortest possible time

Entry to MBA program is usually motivated as follows: to increase one’s income level, to make a dizzying career, to raise the profitability of own business ... 

All these motives are related to one thing: in MBA they see a panacea for all financial hardship, possible or already happened in a person's life.

The degree of Master of Business Administration and the program that allows take this degree was invented by the Americans at the beginning of the last century. The purpose of the "invention" was quick and effective training of managers for business needs. MBA program managed to become the benchmark for training of top and middle managers in the shortest possible time. The fact is that from the very beginning MBA system "put" on the cruelest selection system. And today not everyone is enrolled in the program. But it's not just worth trying, but necessary. It is necessary to exert all imaginable and unimaginable efforts if you see yourself in the future as a successful and competent professional in the field of business.

There is no single MBA standard, however, it is quite possible to "sketch out" an approximate list of documents required for admission.
Package of documents.
1. Application in the form of a completed application form;
2. Resume;
3. Transcript: a copy of the diploma and a list of the listened university courses with hours and scores (translated and certified by a notary);
4. Receipt confirming payment of a registration fee;
5. Recommendations from the place of work or study;
The list of requirements for a candidate for admission varies depending on the business school, its level and country. For example, many people believe that one of the mandatory conditions for admission to MBA is 2-3 years of experience of an applicant in the leadership activity. However, this is true only for classical European business schools, while American schools do not always require the availability of professional experience.
Requirements for a candidate:
• higher education in any field (bachelor's degree is sufficient);
• essay writing;
• high result in the TOEFL/IELTS test;
• high result in GMAT test.
Absolutely all schools require writing several essays. The number varies from three to eight. Each school has its own priorities, its own value orientations. Carefully study all available information about the business school you have chosen. This information should form the basis of the ideological and semantic content of your work.

Keep in mind that the quality and readability of the essay directly depends on the time you spend on writing. Do not expect that due to your literary pseudo-talent and excellent English proficiency, you will be able to produce wonderful, competitive texts in one sitting. Depend upon two or three weeks. Comprehension of one's own self, own achievements and prospects, in relation to the educational concept of the chosen educational institution, will take many hours, and even more than two.

Educational institutions annually approve their thematic directions of essay writing. Sometimes topics far from trivial are offered, but more often they are variations of the themes of a certain standard set:
• retrospective look at own successes and achievements,
• statement of motives that prompted you to choose MBA program and this particular school;
• story about plans and proposed ways of their implementation in the future, etc.

Members of the commission will not be interested in stylistic and grammatical "delicacies" of your written statement. The main thing is the clarity and logical "alignment" of the composition of the essay. There are plenty of recommendations on this issue in the network, and therefore it makes no sense to specifically expand on this topic.
Often essay writing is presented as a test, the results of which play a key role in deciding whether to enroll a candidate for MBA program. Perhaps this is so. However, your "opus" may not reach a main reader, and the members of the commission will never know about your extraordinary abilities and other "talents", if the results of the test "fail" without reaching the envisaged passing score. The mandatory requirements for entering MBA program include passing two tests TOEFL/IELTS and GMAT.

We dare to assume that since you are viewing this material, then, most likely, you do not have any problems related to language, and do not take the abbreviation TOEFL as a "cobwebbing" of Latin letters with an incomprehensible meaning.
Examination test for the degree of proficiency in English is not possible to be "failed". And the examination in this regard is perhaps the only one of its kind. There is no "bad" or "good" level, as well as there are no individuals in nature who know a foreign language in perfection. Bilinguals are also no exception.
Almost all universities uniquely "prescribe" in their requirements the number of scores required to enter the program. Each school approves its minimum. In fact, the "good" result is the one that will not prevent your entry.
Passing GMAT to many is more problematic. This test has the reputation of "great" and "terrible", which is not quite deserved.

Graduate Management Admission Test is an English-language test, determining the ability in mathematics and analytics, as well as language skills of a testee. GMAT test is mandatory for applicants under a master's or graduate program with an economic (or technical) specialization in the universities in Europe and America, as well as anyone wishing to continue the education in the best foreign business schools.

GMAT is called a "smart" test. This "nickname" it has earned because of a special adaptive format that allows the computer to adjust to the level of a testee. Each of your answer shall be analyzed by a special program and it shall "decide" which question to propose next: if you answered correctly, the next question will be more difficult, respectively, and the scores for the correct decision will be higher; Incorrect answers predetermine a low level of complexity of the next task, and therefore a low score for a correct answer. If the level of complexity of the questions increases with each click - you are on the right track.

For successful passing GMAT it is not necessary to have any special deep knowledge in the field of economics and business - above all, the test evaluates your skills of using the resources of a logical device in solving problems, as well as the ability to optimally use information.

The structure of GMAT test is four blocks of tasks, each of which assesses your preparedness for business education in terms of its parameters. The total duration of the exam is 3 hours 30 minutes (for verbal and mathematical parts - 75 minutes, for analytics and writing - 30 minutes) + 10 minutes for the break after each block.
1. Analytical Writing Assesement (evaluates the ability to critically think and express something in writing) takes the first 30 minutes of the exam. A testee is offered an argument, which he/she must analyze and confirm his/her conclusions with actual examples. The examiners are represented by experts from the examination board (style and logic of presentation) and a computer program (orthography, punctuation and plagiarism).

2. Integrated Reasoning (analytical abilities) is added quite recently and does not affect the overall result of testing. For half an hour you need to answer 12 questions. The illustrative material (graphs, diagrams and tables) and information to it are offered, which a testee must confirm or disprove.

3. Verbal section evaluates the skills of working with the text. It includes three sections, for execution of which 75 minutes are given.  

•Reading Comprehension is reading several texts of economic subjects and answers to questions.
•Critical Reasoning  is reading texts + refutation or confirmation of arguments with "connection" of one's own argumentation.
•Sentence Correction is check spelling and punctuation in the proposed texts.

4. Quantitative (mathematical block) involves solving two types of problems: algebraic and arithmetic calculations + interpretation of graphic data. 75 minutes are given for the assignment.

Each block is evaluated separately. The maximum total score is 800, the minimum score is - 200.

Relatively recently GRE test began to spread as an alternative to GMAT exam. Examination test in the form of GMAT/GRE is relevant for high-end MBA-fulltime programs. The differences in these two tests will be discussed in more detail in the following publications.

The last step on the way to admission will be conversation with the admission committee tete-a-tete. It is difficult to give any concrete, practical advice to those preparing for an interview, and it is useless. Once you were invited - it means that you were "worthy" to study at this school. At the interview it will be decided, whether you are suitable or not. Therefore, try as much as possible to "sell" yourself - all well-known tricks of PR-arsenal will fit.

An objective analysis of the entire set of elements of the individual preparatory program of MBA applicant shows that about 70% of a candidate's time and efforts are spent to preparing for GMAT. Therefore, do not save on your own success and contact a solid consulting agency specializing in international education, which will help with preparation of documents, writing essays, with choice of a training center and courses for preparing for GMAT exam. The higher your requests, the more rigorous should be the attitude towards your education.