Business Schools Say MBA Rankings Can’t Be Trusted

There’s growing concern among business schools who say rankings fail to reflect the true quality of MBA programs

MBA rankings are failing to reflect the true performance of the flagship business school programs, according to 1,291 school administrators, students, graduates and employers.

Just one in 10 believe that rankings do this, according to the survey by the Association of MBAs and Business Graduates Association (AMBA and BGA), which accredit business schools.

Rankings are a valuable resource for MBA and other business degree aspirants to compare and contrast dozens of courses. But the new survey today exposed the lack of trust in the ability of rankings to determine the relative quality of MBA programs.

Among business school deans, MBA directors and other staff, just 4% think rankings reflect MBA performance ‘very well’. More than half do not think rankings measure programs ‘very well’ or ‘at all well’, while a third of all respondents do not think this.

READ MORE: The Best Business Schools Of 2019 (FT Rankings)

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The survey is the second major piece of research that has criticized rankings recently. At January’s World Economic Forum in Davos, a report from UN Global Compact, a corporate sustainability initiative, called for a radical rethinking of ranking methodologies.

Currently the major rankings are geared towards the salary differential measure, which reflects MBA candidates’ desire to advance their careers. But respondents to AMBA’s survey said that the salary measures are too short term, and do not work for graduates who become entrepreneurs or work in lower-paying sectors such as international development.

Another concern is that some rankings, including that of the...

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