There are a ton of different places to get information about business school out there on the web—but how can you weed out the valuable information from the noise? I know I was overwhelmed when I started searching!
Since it’s the time of year when you’re starting to seriously think about applying, I thought it would be helpful to share a list of the key websites I used regularly during and after the grad school application process. Hopefully, they’ll be as useful for you as they were for me.
1. GMAT Club
GMAT Club hosts a ton of different forums on the application process for each specific school. Hundreds of people are active on the site, and many more (like me) hop in every now and then to keep an eye on relevant threads.
It’s a great place to get up-to-date information about a particular program (such as interview questions or thoughts on essay topics)—plus, reading posts about how stressful the whole application experience is can be kind of cathartic.
One quick warning: Some people can find the forums to be intimidating because people post when they get admitted to various schools and share personal information such as GMAT scores. Don’t let that get to you, and focus on getting to the helpful information.
Poets and Quants posts editorial content, b-school news, and information about the application process. I especially like the site’s comparisons of similar programs (such as Ross vs. Kellogg)—they really helped me frame some of my decisions as I was comparing different programs.
The resident expert Q&A, in which experts on particular topics such as admissions, financial aid, and international schools answer questions from readers, can also be really informative.
Beat the GMAT is a great one-stop-shop for free help as you prepare for the GMAT. It hosts a lot of different forums about GMAT-specific topics—both general threads about ways to prepare for the test and conversations about how to derive the answer of a particular question—and also provides discounts on GMAT prep classes.
My favorite feature was the math and verbal question of the day—if you sign up for Beat the GMAT’s newsletter, you’ll get a daily email with a GMAT question, along with an explanation of how to answer it.
There’s definitely a lot of promotional material on this site, but I found it to be critical to my success on the GMAT for one reason: It has two official, full-length GMAT tests that anyone can download for free. Because the tests from this site mimic the real GMAT’s adaptive question method, taking them really helped me to prepare for the actual test.
5. MBA Apply
This advice site is run by a professional b-school admissions consultant. While you can pay for private consultations, there’s also a lot of information available for free.
The site is more focused on top-tier MBA programs, but a lot of the tips are generalizable to any application process, such as whether or not a full-time program is right for you. There’s also a great post matching b-schools up with their car personas, which, though completely based on stereotype, is a fun diversion from GMAT prep and essay questions.
6. School Admissions Blogs
Once you decide where you’re applying, you will definitely want to spend some time on each school’s admissions blog. These blogs are maintained by admissions offices, which put a lot of thought into what gets posted, so the sites can be a great place to get information about both the process and the feel of the school.
Some of them are very different—for example, the admissions director is the only person who posts on HBS’s blog (and she’s always very direct, which I love) while Darden’s shares a broader scope of information.
I hope this helps you get started! Are there any sites you would recommend to folks applying to b-school?
Photo of desk courtesy of Shutterstock.