Actual Global Undergrad Tier List

This is the most thorough tier list of institutions of higher learning's undergraduate programs, sorted by an aggregate of success rate into MBB, IBD and PE and international perception/prestige. Inaccurate metrics such as total placement, placement per capita, on-campus recruiting, geographical location or alumni base are eliminated from the aggregate data.

The metrics for schools in each tier fall within roughly 0.414 standard deviations of each other. Within tiers, there are no particular order of schools. This list only covers institutions of higher learning in developed countries (G7 + Hong Kong, Australia, Switzerland, Singapore and regions without developed status by FTSE nor MSCI, but has a sufficiently developed capital markets infrastructure on par with G7 countries).

Tier White

"A student from this school has roughly a 27-33% chance of breaking into MBB, IBD or PE in developed regions."

  • Oxford
  • Cambridge
  • LSE
  • Harvard
  • Yale
  • UPenn (Wharton only)
  • ETH Zurich
  • Tsinghua 
  • Kyoto 
  • Tokyo

Tier Gold

"A student from this school has roughly a 14-26% chance of breaking into MBB, IBD or PE in developed regions."

  • Dartmouth
  • Cornell
  • Princeton
  • UVA
  • MIT
  • Warwick
  • Imperial
  • UCL
  • HEC Montreal
  • Peking
  • Melbourne
  • TUM

Tier Grey

"A student from this school has roughly a 11-13% chance of breaking into MBB, IBD or PE in developed regions."

  • Georgetown
  • Notre Dame
  • Michigan (Ross only)
  • UToronto
  • St Andrews
  • KCL
  • Manchester
  • ANU
  • Sydney
  • Bocconi

Tier Brown

 "A student from this school has roughly a 3-13% chance of breaking into MBB, IBD or PE in developed regions."

  • NYU (Stern only)
  • Columbia
  • Chicago
  • UC Berkeley (Haas only)
  • Caltech
  • Queen's (Canada)
  • McGill
  • etc

Tier Black

"A student from this school has <3% chance of breaking into MBB, IBD or PE in developed regions."

I'm only going to include overrated schools that most would think are at least Tier Brown, well known or notable schools in this category, otherwise it would encompass pretty much every school in the developed world.

  • USC (Marshall only)
  • IU (Kelley only)
  • Stanford
  • Western (Ivey only)
  • Northwestern
  • etc

Comments (106)

Oct 24, 2021 - 9:35pm
jacksonl22, what's your opinion? Comment below:

Pretty accurate so far, especially because the success rates have shifted a lot this year. I'd put Princeton one tier down and Bocconi up a tier though.

Oct 24, 2021 - 9:42pm
cfalevel1candidate, what's your opinion? Comment below:

Why the fuck is Dartmouth that high, and I don't see a single german or french uni on here

  • 3
Oct 24, 2021 - 9:52pm
godofallbanks, what's your opinion? Comment below:

unironically accurate, even though i noticed you sorted the tiers from best to worst from white to brown to black (tf is wrong with you)

  • Prospect in IB - CB
Oct 24, 2021 - 11:02pm

Neither of those schools are hidden gems lol in fact UCLA is one of the worst schools for finance compared to peer schools

Oct 25, 2021 - 4:00am
Germonkey, what's your opinion? Comment below:

that TUM was included in the same tier as MIT, UCL, Imperial, Warwick, Princeton, Dartmouth and HEC is the much bigger troll

  • Intern in PE - LBOs
Oct 25, 2021 - 7:51am

Yeah - if you apply to MBB from Manchester they'll bin your CV without reading down the page..

  • Prospect in RE - Comm
Oct 25, 2021 - 12:32am

Serious question - how hard is it to make it to IB or S&T from Penn State?

  • Analyst 1 in IB-M&A
Oct 25, 2021 - 12:08am

Western Ivey and Queens should at least be the same tier as uToronto if not higher. I don't know if anyone from uToronto goes to US banks. It is a good feeder for MBB though

Oct 25, 2021 - 10:50am
user1026, what's your opinion? Comment below:

Western uses a 2 year program, meaning kids under x gpa are filtered out entirely, skewing data heavily in their favor because everyone in their b school has over ~3.8 gpa.

McGill and Queen's run the show domestically, why UToronto is by far the most represented international school found in Asia-Pacific, having even more presence there than McGill or Queen's does in Canada and the US combined.

  • Analyst 1 in IB - Gen
Oct 25, 2021 - 11:50am

Re your comment on UT in APAC, that is correct. UT has the most non-biz brand recognition out of any Canadian school. However, if we are talking about biz, UT is not really in the discussion. McGill and Queens are great schools, however, they do not "run the show" domestically. Ivey performs the best domestically, with Queens as a very close second. McGill is not considered to be in the same tier, however, they still do great regardless.

Side note, you placed HEC Montreal as the #1 school in Canada and in the same category as schools like Dartmouth/MIT? Anyone from Canada would read that and assume to be a troll

  • Intern in IB - Cov
Oct 25, 2021 - 12:11am

Read it bottom to top and its the ranking of likelihood of getting pussy in college. This is why I went to Blue Mountain State and now proudly work at GS/MS/Tobin & Co as an extern. 

  • 4
  • Prospect in IB-M&A
Oct 25, 2021 - 12:29am

Surprised to see Cornell so high, always thought its large class sizes somewhat covered its mediocre placement

  • Intern in IB-M&A
Oct 25, 2021 - 1:22am

had no idea the non-UK/NA universities ranked so highly 

  • Associate 1 in PE - Other
Oct 25, 2021 - 2:09am

Your percentages are so off lmfao. My Harvard graduating class had just one single student who wanted IB but couldn't land a gig. I couldn't tell you how many kids ended up in IB/MBB/PE, but it was certainly more than two.

  • Intern in IB - Cov
Oct 25, 2021 - 12:49pm

You sound like a total nerd. Pls fix by EOD and touch grass ASAP

Oct 25, 2021 - 10:51am
user1026, what's your opinion? Comment below:

They have roughly the same opportunities to place in their domestic seats as US/UK schools have of placing in North America/Europe.

Oct 25, 2021 - 3:57am
Germonkey, what's your opinion? Comment below:

Absolutely horrible list. While schools like ETH Zürich are well regarded it's not really a traditional target for non quant finance. Same goes for TUM, I think some of them go into MBB, but it's definitely not common and ppl from TUM in ibd or pe are even less common. St. Gallen, WHU and Uni Mannheim are all way better than TUM for getting into finance in the DACH area (Germany, Switzerland, Austria). I think the same applies to UofT, which is not target at all, even though it's highly ranked because of its research. St. Andrews, KCL and Manchester are Semi Targets at best, the only true UK targets are Warwick, Imperial, UCL, LSE, Oxbridge and LBS.

Oct 25, 2021 - 6:13am
rough diamond, what's your opinion? Comment below:

Tell me you're racist without telling me that you're racist... What else can be expected from a guy with a user name that reflects pristenely three facts a) heavy inferiority complexes due to micropenis issues b) repressed homo impulses c) very strong pedo impulses... Fuck off and go back to rape dogs while looking at a portrait of your fhürer or however is written ( is a well known fact of the history of psychiatry that hitler's niece committed suicide because of the aberrant acts that she was forced to commit by her uncle even including dogs)

Oct 25, 2021 - 12:03pm
rbcisabulgebracket, what's your opinion? Comment below:

Ivey is massively overrated on forums like WSO because of the US centric nature of these forums. People working in the US see Ivey overrepresented in the states relative to their b school size, so they tend to think it's more of a "target" than Smith (Queens) or Desautels (McGill) who really dominate up north.

  • 7
  • Prospect in IB-M&A
Oct 25, 2021 - 12:50pm

I do agree that Ivey, Queens and McGill are used to having better placements, however, UofT is doing better and better now, there are people who got BBs this year given how limited the spots are in BBs in Canada. Besides, UofT is probably the most academically prestigious school and is known for its bell curve. A 3.8 at UofT and a 3.8 in other schools (besides waterloo) are incomparable, and uoft kids work way harder to get the same GPA. 

Oct 25, 2021 - 12:50pm
chadleykennedy, what's your opinion? Comment below:

Can confirm that UofT is internationally acclaimed, the only kids from Canada I see here in London are all from UofT.

  • Analyst 1 in IB - Gen
Oct 25, 2021 - 11:39am

As per usual, international schools are all WAY OFF.

Wtf is Kyoto doing in the top tier instead of Keio or Waseda? Wtf is ETH Zurich doing in the top tier? 

Wtf is Manchester doing lumped in with Bocconi. Where tf are the other UK semi-targets? 

Trash effort

  • Intern in IB - Gen
Oct 25, 2021 - 12:43pm

It makes no sense to see KCL, St Andrew's, and Manchester above US targets like Columbia, Stern, Berkeley. A school like McGill is also several tiers below these schools as well. 

  • Analyst 1 in IB - Gen
Oct 25, 2021 - 12:49pm

This is not accurate for international schools in the slightest

  • Analyst 1 in IB-M&A
Oct 25, 2021 - 12:49pm

My graduating class would disagree with placements at literally every bank I can think of. Again, to each their own, but as mentioned from actually attending the school and having worked for 4 years, kids  are able to place anywhere from there and I didn't know anyone who was unable to break into banking that started on time (a few that missed the boat). Is there less interest broadly from the student body? Maybe. But it's not hard to get an interview coming from NU. Also, having been on the hiring end of things, it's going to be perceived better than stern/  umich/ any school ranked lower unless you are a direct alumni of that specific institution.

Oct 25, 2021 - 12:49pm
anothergodammasian, what's your opinion? Comment below:

hi,could you please talk a little more about lazardis,what sort of roles and what companies they place into,really considering attending,any info would be very very helpful

thanks in advance

  • Prospect in PE - Other
Oct 25, 2021 - 12:49pm

UK is very wrong - if per capita, LSE is actually worse than Imperial, UCL and Warwick (go look at the career outcomes for LSE, 22% in all of finance and accounting out of how many trying?). And Manchester even being on this list is a joke. 

Oct 25, 2021 - 12:49pm
jamiedimonshairline, what's your opinion? Comment below:

I'm pretty sure the politics, history or public policy kids (which is like half their filler courses) aren't gunning for finance (although I have no idea what their goals are)

  • Consultant in Consulting
Oct 25, 2021 - 12:49pm

Lmao at HEC Montreal, if you include TUM might as well include other continental enginering schools like EPFL, TU Delft, Ecole Polytechnique. Engineering schools as targets is retarded most people do not care about banking/mbb there.

Also hate to break it to you but people have already done the dick measuring contest with the QS Ranking and THE Ranking

Oct 25, 2021 - 12:50pm
junkyahd, what's your opinion? Comment below:

Totally biased take on my end because I went there, but not seeing Vanderbilt on any of these rankings always is just as reflective of the forum's bias. UChicago below Notre Dame and Georgetown? UChicago easily has one of the most revered economics departments in the US. 

Anecdotally, I completely agree with the Northwestern poster about everyone I knew that was set on going into IB or MBB landed it. Yes, there's no dedicated undergrad B-school (which is irrelevant in my opinion). Yes, the school is geographically in a massive recruiting void. Regardless, from my experience the kids that wanted to go for one of these specific routes all made it happen. 

My main qualm with the ranking is what the hell is your methodology behind the "probability of breaking in"? Are you assuming that every person at every school is gunning for only the industries you listed? That would clearly skew your numbers heavily in favor of schools with a larger population interested in these jobs, as they'd place higher in aggregate and relative % purely based on the self-selection into those programs. 

End of the day, anyone at a T20 in the US can break in given that's that's a goal they commit to along with the other universal set of pre-requisites (GPA, major, etc.). And limiting that to just T20 is being conservative. No comment on outside the US I have limited context there. 

Most Helpful
Oct 25, 2021 - 12:50pm
dpt23, what's your opinion? Comment below:

Whoever made this has zero clue what they're talking about. Princeton is definitely white. No way in hell is UVA even remotely close to gold lol. And why tf is my alma mater Columbia in tier brown? Columbia students go straight to buy side and skip that beta IB life. Don't think Stern or Georgetown should be that low either. List was made by some UVA kid trying to steal clout. UVA kids make me laugh.

Oct 25, 2021 - 12:50pm
xx_legendkid_2011youtube_xx, what's your opinion? Comment below:

Columbia kids don't go straight to buyside, buyside seats are filled 95% by WHYD/Oxbridge kids. Princeton is overrated as fuck on mainstream media, in most professional and academic fields, it's in the ballpark of Brown, Cornell, UCLA and the other low-tier ivy equivalents.

Oct 25, 2021 - 12:50pm
dpt23, what's your opinion? Comment below:

Yeah a bunch of my friends and I went straight buyside. Laughable that you try to sneak in Dartmouth with HYW. Dartmouth is for people who couldn't get into a good ivy and chose Dartmouth so their parents could brag their kids go to an ivy. And trying to group Princeton with Brown and Cornell (UCLA is not even a semi target) is also a joke. 

Oct 25, 2021 - 12:50pm
wowrelax, what's your opinion? Comment below:

Just LMAO at the Canadian schools ordered in the list and LMAO at the metrics being used here.

UToronto (Rotman) above Queen's, McGill which are above Western's Ivey tells me a literal baboon made this list.

At least read the actual tier list in Canada everyone and their mothers knows about before u try and implement it into your garbage 

Oct 25, 2021 - 12:50pm
ryanlou9233, what's your opinion? Comment below:

You literally have zero idea how statistics work if you still think Western and Queen's are above McGill or Toronto.

The undisputed ranking by those in the industry are: 






Oct 25, 2021 - 12:50pm
wowrelax, what's your opinion? Comment below:

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Jun 17, 2022 - 7:10am
[email protected], what's your opinion? Comment below:

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Jun 17, 2022 - 7:11am
freshman trying to figure it out, what's your opinion? Comment below:

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Jun 17, 2022 - 7:11am
freshman trying to figure it out, what's your opinion? Comment below:

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