How do MBA application deadlines work?

Whilst each school obviously has its own specific deadlines for MBA applications, generally speaking business schools in the US have three admission rounds, with deadlines falling in September, January, and March/April respectively. Some schools may have a round 4 or even 5 but these are often for domestic students only due to the time taken to obtain a student visa. 


Deadlines for Asian or European programmes can be slightly different. Schools which follow the US calendar with a September start will usually have deadlines broadly matching the US system, although they may well have more rounds - Manchester, in the UK, for example, has 9. However there are some MBA programs in Europe and Asia which offer start dates in January, naturally meaning that they have a different admissions cycle. Round one applications often fall between January and March but of course, check with your individual school.

When are the UK MBA application deadlines?

Most UK MBA programmes run on the September - August calendar so MBA application deadlines in the UK tend to start in September/October for round one. For more details, see our downloadable MBA application deadline tracker.

MBA admission preparation: Where do I start?

 Assuming you have decided which are the best MBA courses for you to apply to, you need to make sure that you understand each school’s application timeline and entry requirements for the MBA. You may need to prepare for the GMAT, or other admissions test used by your target schools, but make sure that you put sufficient emphasis on your admissions essays too. More and more business schools are also asking applicants to submit a video recording as part of the process, ensure that you leave enough time to prepare for this. You could also speak to alumni from your target schools to learn more about their MBA interview and application experiences.

Are there MBA programs with no application fees?

There are! It is common for business schools to charge MBA application fees to ensure that applications are serious about being considered for the program. However a few top schools in the UK such as Manchester and Cranfield in the UK currently do not charge an application fee. Many other universities offer application fee waivers to those who qualify for reasons of financial hardship.