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Stanford GSB Holds Top Spot in Financial Times Global MBA Ranking

For the second time in a row, Stanford Graduate School of Business has captured the number one honors in the Financial Times Global MBA Ranking , beating out Harvard Business School .

According to the ranking, the top ten MBA programs of 2019 are:

– Stanford Graduate School of Business
– Harvard Business School
– University of Pennsylvania Wharton School
– London Business School
– University of Chicago Booth School of Business
– MIT Sloan School of Management
– Columbia Business School
– University of California, Berkeley Haas School of Business

The top ten schools are unchanged from 2018, but among those top ten some reshuffling has taken place. For example, CEIBS is up to fifth from eighth, which FT says is its highest ranking ever of a Chinese MBA program.

FT includes a variety of data points in its methodology, among which salary is the most important. Average alum salary three years after graduation and average pre-MBA to post- MBA salary increase each account for 20 percent of a school’s score.

For example, first-place Stanford GSB reported an average salary of $228,074 (with some adjustment for sector-to-sector differences), for an increase of 129 percent. At second-place HBS, those numbers are $205,486 and 112 percent respectively.

Faculty research is also a key factor in FT’s rankings, accounting for 10 percent of a school’s score. FT ranks research output by looking at both a school’s absolute number of papers in a sample of journals and its relative number adjusted for faculty size.

Other important factors include graduates’ international mobility (6 percent of a school’s score) and the portion of full-time faculty with doctorates (5 percent).

A handful of schools saw dramatic jumps in FT’s rankings from last year. University of Oxford’s Saïd School of Business rose from 27 to 13, and Indian Institute of Management Calcutta went from 78 to 49.

Still, FT points out that stasis appears to be a theme in this year’s rankings. Not only are the top ten schools unchanged from last year, but the proportion of countries represented in the top 100 appears to be more or less the same.

According to FT, the fact that “so few new schools made it to this year’s ranking” suggests a widening “gap between the top schools and the rest” such that “the barriers of entry have become too high for others to gain a foothold.”

Indeed, top MBA programs clearly stand apart both in the outcomes their alumni have and in the selectiveness of their admissions process.

At EXPARTUS, we can give you feedback on how your profile stacks up at these schools and what you can do to improve your chances of admission – ask us for a free MBA application assessment !