European b-school choice

Rody's picture
Rank: Senior Chimp | 18

Hi All,

I'm thinking about applying for an MBA to start in Sep 2007. At the moment top of my list are the Said Business School (Oxford) and INSEAD. I'm also considering Cass (City) and the London Business School.

For a bit of background - I live in london, have a good degree from a top UK uni, have been working for an IT consultancy for the past 4 years, and have a GMAT of 760. Am still a little uncertain about what to do after an MBA, but know it's time for a change.

I have a preference for a 1 year course just because of the lower opportunity cost and the fact that most european MBAs are 1 year.

Here are my thoughts at the moment:

I think INSEAD is generally rated as the best 1 year course in europe, plus it would force me to pick up another language which would be a plus, as would the opportunity to live in both france and singapore.

Oxford I think is good, but probably not up there right at the top, however the Oxford name gives this a certain amount of extra prestige, particularly outside of the world of Consulting/Banking.

Cass again might not be quite top tier but I assume would benefit from its location and the kind of people that would choose to study there would probably be good contacts to have. Cass would probably also be the easiest of these 4 to get in to.

LBS is undoubtedly the best in europe, and would I suspect be the hardest of these 4 to get into. As I say, the main thing putting me off is the two year length of the course. Two years brings a lot of advantages of course - an internship, more electives etc.

LBS and INSEAD are probably the only two that would rank in a worldwide top 10.

So, are my impressions correct? Does anyone have any thoughts on any of these institutions?

Cheers,
Rody

Comments (12)

Aug 15, 2006

you are correct. I'm not sure that Said has ANY recognition...if you're serious, and with your GMAT and degree you should be, then its LBS or INSEAD for you. Also good is IESE in Barcelona....

There's also a joint MSc/ MBA at LSE and HEC if my memory serves me correctly....if you're interested in the international element then that might be worth a look.

Ultimately your choice should be INSEAD followed by LBS. Although LBS seems to have more recognition in North America....

Aug 16, 2006

There's also a joint MSc/ MBA at LSE and HEC if my memory serves me correctly....if you're interested in the international element then that might be worth a look.

Thanks for pointing that out, I wasn't aware of this dual MSc/MBA programme. It looks interesting but unfortunately the the MScs on offer are quite limited. Plus I'm not sure what the advatage would be over doing say a 1 yr MBA at INSEAD followed by an MSc at LSE.

I think the main thing going for Said is the Oxford brand which I think does carry some weight. I'm pretty sure that all the top Banks and Consultancies would consider Oxford a core school for recruiting (along with LBS and Insead of course).

The FT 2005 european rankings/global ranking/average GMAT for these schools are:

Oxford (Said):7/20/675
Insead: 2/8/703
LBS: 1/5/680
City (Cass):9/47/623

I include GMAT just as measure of competitiveness, altough obviously it will depend on the weighting the school gives it in apps. For comparison Stanford's is 714 and Kellog's is 700.

I think given Cass's generally low standing I'm going to disregard it. If something goes terribly wrong with my other apps, I can probably get in with a late app here anyway.

Cheers,
Rody

Aug 16, 2006

No Oxford SAID is definately recognized globaly. While it may not be as high ranked as LBS and INSEAD, it is definately in the top 20 programs world wide. I'd say go for INSEAD or LBS if i were you. both are great choices. Hey do you mind me asking what your undergrad cumulative GPA is?

Aug 16, 2006

No Oxford SAID is definately recognized globaly. While it may not be as high ranked as LBS and INSEAD, it is definately in the top 20 programs world wide. I'd say go for INSEAD or LBS if i were you. both are great choices. Hey do you mind me asking what your undergrad cumulative GPA is?

I'm not sure what the equivalent would be in US terms. My degree was a 1st, which is the highest classfication possible in the UK system (which goes 1st, 2:1,2:2,3rd,Pass) with I think a 2:1 roughly equivalent to 3.5. Obviously our system isn't quite as granular or detailed as yours. Why do you ask?

Cheers,
Rody

Sep 6, 2006

"I think the main thing going for Said is the Oxford brand which I think does carry some weight. I'm pretty sure that all the top Banks and Consultancies would consider Oxford a core school for recruiting (along with LBS and Insead of course)."

I'll take your word for it, but I know from my experience in NA no one has heard of anything other than LBS or INSEAD and IESE if they've done their homework....

Sep 24, 2006

But the 1 year programs are not common in North America...

How are they viewed internationally?

Nov 16, 2006

Those are the optimal choices, but if you can't get into those schools, then those others are in the second tier.

As someone else pointed out IESE is a great school and the I-banks are recruiting there more every year. It is 2 years, but it's in Barcelona, so learning some Catalan and hang out on the beach is a great way to spend 2 years!

Nov 17, 2006

May be worth looking into...I think INSEAD may require two languages at start and 3 by the time you graduate, but I could be wrong

Nov 19, 2006

I don't think you have to be fluent in the second language to get into INSEAD--just studied a second language (from looking at the website).

Nov 20, 2006

you need to be able to pass some sort of internationally recognized test above a certain level in a second language to get into INSEAD. These levels are probably closer to Intermediate than really fluent.

Nov 24, 2006

I have been doing some in-depth analysis of the LBS program and you can actually complete it in 15 months if you want. Unless you have nothing going for you except the GMAT, you should have no problem getting into LBS or top U.S. schools.

Nov 26, 2006
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